Monthly Columns

Writing “The Magic of Nature” By Author Jessica Marie Baumgartner

Nature is magic. I mean that in every way: figurative, literal, serious, humorous. Like all creatures, humans hold their own place in the balance of existence on Earth. We may get a little out of hand at times, but Mother Nature knows how to keep us in check.

When I sat down to write my upcoming Llewellyn Worldwide release, “The Magic of Nature: Meditations & Spells to Find Your Inner Voice,” I had no idea if they would accept it. That didn’t matter. The work has its place and I knew it had to be written.

It seems that a lot of people aren’t sure of themselves or their place in the world. Modern technology has advanced so quickly that a great deal of the population can live in comfortable discomfort, depriving ourselves of our basic natural needs to heed the “call of the wild.” Depression, anxiety, or fear for the future is increased by numerous media messages hammering ideas of self-hatred into the hearts and minds of people everywhere.

There are reasons to be concerned. On the whole, we have become imbalanced. There is an obesity epidemic in the United States and the UK while children in Haiti, Yemen, and Ethiopia suffer starvation. Freedom is heralded in Hong Kong and Switzerland while China still uses slave labor and currently holds 1 million people in concentration camps. There are constant clashes between movements for Nationalism and Globalism in various countries across the globe. These extremes are polar opposites.

Some days I think the Gods are laughing at us, others I wonder if they’re taking a nap and we’re running around like unsupervised children doing whatever we want, facing the consequences without proper guidance.

No one ever has all the answers but I find my peace in recognizing what matters most. Nothing has to be any one thing. A person can appreciate their homeland while also wishing to improve it. We can be more conscious of what we support and turn away from destructive corporations and people. It is possible to take care of ourselves while looking out for others in the process.

It’s all about balance. Balance is a constant struggle in life, but it is everywhere in nature and Paganism. Where death occurs so does birth. When natural disasters decimate lands, new growth is found. Disease many plague one generation so the next can be stronger, and so on.

I have always found balance in the natural world. Hiking, swimming, fishing, and just immersing myself in the beauty of forests or natural waterways makes everything clearer. It pushes away self-doubt and reminds me to listen, to trust fate, and spread love. It may sound cheesy but all the best things are (unless you’re lactose intolerant, and if you are, I hope it sounds more appley to you).

But it’s not just about balance. It’s easy to say, “We need more balance.” Living it is another realm.

So how do we find that perfect middle ground? That place where we can go for a walk but sometimes bring our cell phone along without it attaching itself to our face and blocking the view?

That is what this book is about. It doesn’t matter if you live in a city, suburb, or a rural area, everyone can reclaim the natural instincts that properly guide them through life.

Everyone has a compass within. It just gets drowned out sometimes. Modern technology can be a helpful tool that aids people in many areas of life, but when we get addicted to it and/or cannot allow ourselves time inside our own thoughts without some kind of device draining our battery life, we miss a lot of messages from our inner voice, and in so doing, we drift farther away from the God(s)/universe.

Rachel True said something in an interview with The Witch Daily Show a few months ago that really spoke to me. She explained how she doesn’t cast a lot of spells. She noted the reason being, “I am the spell.”

It perfectly embodies my approach to spirituality and my connection with everything. I consider spellwork a special gift meant only for specific needs, but at the same time, a lot of my daily practices are a ritual. Meditation is life. In essence, life is magic. Nature is magic because it is full of life, balancing itself however it needs to, regardless of how much we try to stack the odds in our favor.

The first draft of, “The Magic of Nature,” was very natural. Writing is a difficult craft for me. I’m a dyslexic who doesn’t sit still well, but this manuscript flew from my fingers. At times I would message my husband and note that the book was “writing itself.”

I’ve been a practicing Pagan for over two decades and writing professionally for almost 10 years now, so maybe I’ve just reached the point of taking on a topic that suits me best. Having knowledge to impart definitely makes the words flow. There is also that silly romantic idea crying out from within that says: Dammit woman, the Gods have set you on a mission, give them some freaking credit!

Whatever it is, my main goal is to get people back outside and reconnecting with natural ties. I know there’s a lot going on. We should always work to stay well and care for others, but the trees are just sitting there offering clean oxygen and scenery. The birds keep singing, and no matter what happens, their songs remind us of our own meaning.

I’m not saying everyone has to give up their current lifestyle and wander the forests for ever and ever (as fun as that sounds to me). What I’ve been writing about is finding that deeper part of ourselves which offers greater purpose. Our instincts have kept humanity in order for generations. They exist for a reason.

Those bonds are a direct link between ourselves and the land. Digging deeper, they hold the roots of humanity and what it truly means to live as an intelligent creature of this planet.

Meditation, rituals, and spellwork are best done in nature. They host the power to unlock our inner voice and draw out our higher selves to lead us with better intentions. I’ve included various practices to be used on the trail, in the water, and beyond in, “The Magic of Nature.” These workings were made with minimum materials needed so individuals can better focus on themselves and balancing the energies which flow from within throughout the rest of the world.

Simply put, I wrote a book about talking to myself and Mother Nature. There is magic in each page. If you look for it.

The Magic of Nature: Meditations & Spells to Find Your Inner Voice on Amazon

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About the Author:

Jessica is a Pagan mother of four, whose children’s books about diversity and acceptance have received critical acclaim and multiple awards. She is the author of “Walk Your Path,” and the new upcoming Llewellyn release, “The Magic of Nature.” Her work has been featured by, “Sedona Journal of Emergence,” “Light of Consciousness Magazine,” “Conscious Shift Magazine,” “The New Spirit Journal,” “Chicken Soup for the Soul,” “Circle Magazine,” “The Witches’ Voice,” and many more. Find her at jessicamariebaumgartner.com

Jessica is a Pagan mother of four, whose children’s books about diversity and acceptance have received critical acclaim and multiple awards. She is the author of “Walk Your Path,” and the new upcoming Llewellyn release, “The Magic of Nature.” Her work has been featured by, “Sedona Journal of Emergence,” “Light of Consciousness Magazine,” “Conscious Shift Magazine,” “The New Spirit Journal,” “Chicken Soup for the Soul,” “Circle Magazine,” “The Witches’ Voice,” and many more. Find her at jessicamariebaumgartner.com