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Heka
07 Sep 2013, 20:42
Book, by Raven Kaldera and Galina Krasskova. Has anyone read this? Or used it in their own spiritual development? I just got it as an ebook, and after reading the first chapter have decided I like it. I've even started some of the exercises in and see it as a good guide for me at the moment.

So anyone else used it/read it/studied it? Or read any of their other books?

MoonRaven
08 Sep 2013, 12:11
*Lols so hard she nearly falls of the sofa*

Sorry, it's just that I got my dirty little mitts on that one just the other week :p. Now there's synchronicity for you. I've only skimmed so this is very much a preliminary judgement that may go in either direction as I read it more thoroughly.

All in all find it not so bad, I realise a lot of recons are going to go all militant over it because it does not conform to lore, but since Kaldera and Krasskova is mostly speaking of their own tradition I can't really see why it the lack of scholarly veracity would matter. Also they make it clear that this is not to be taken as historically correct or adhering to lore but is based on what these two have learned from the Gods and the Spirits.


That said, in certain places they present things that are the worst kind of nonsense, I've found some glaring errors in the historical and etymological 'truths', their translation of the meaning of the name Sleipner made my teeth hurt. Also the whole the-north-in-the-Viking-era-and-revious-was-covered-by-snow-and-ice-and-everyone-was-close-to-freezing-to-death-constantly quickly gets tiresome and displays a complete lack of knowledge about the wildly varying climate in Northern Europe, then as well as now, not to mention ignoring the fact that Bronze Age, Iron Age and Viking era was as warm in general climate as we are now. More or less.

Okay, rant over.

On the other hand, a lot of the things they do, that is as in the exercises and practices I do something similar in many cases. Like the part with connecting to plant spirits, in particular of those plants we eat. It has always puzzled me that there aren't more people doing this. And the whole feeding the vaettirs. I never figured out how people thinks it is okay to take energy from a place and not give something back. And the whole thing with incorporating crystals into your working/practise.


So, my judgement. Take the contents with a whole ton of salt, if your experiences deviate from what they describe then go with your own thoughts and ideas. On the other hand, if you want something different than the usual recon song-and-dance when it comes to Nothern Tradition, it looks like not a bad book. But as stated above, don't rely too much on the historical, etymological, ect. facts.


But then, I've only skimmed so far. I may have to get back to you later.

thalassa
08 Sep 2013, 12:33
That said, in certain places they present things that are the worst kind of nonsense, I've found some glaring errors in the historical and etymological 'truths', their translation of the meaning of the name Sleipner made my teeth hurt. Also the whole the-north-in-the-Viking-era-and-revious-was-covered-by-snow-and-ice-and-everyone-was-close-to-freezing-to-death-constantly quickly gets tiresome and displays a complete lack of knowledge about the wildly varying climate in Northern Europe, then as well as now, not to mention ignoring the fact that Bronze Age, Iron Age and Viking era was as warm in general climate as we are now. More or less.

Actually, a really fabulous little book to read, that sort of illustrates the "problem" of climate and the impact of climate on culture, is called The Little Ice Age: How Climate Made History 1300-1850 by Brian Fagan (http://www.amazon.com/The-Little-Ice-Age-1300-1850/dp/0465022723)...it discusses quite a bit in the beginning the role of climate in Norse history.

Rae'ya
08 Sep 2013, 19:15
Book, by Raven Kaldera and Galina Krasskova. Has anyone read this? Or used it in their own spiritual development? I just got it as an ebook, and after reading the first chapter have decided I like it. I've even started some of the exercises in and see it as a good guide for me at the moment.

So anyone else used it/read it/studied it? Or read any of their other books?

I've read all their books and personally I'm a fan. Having said that, they're just like any other authors... they aren't perfect and you can't take everything they say as gospel.

Raven is a spirit worker and shaman, while Krasskova identifies primarily as a Heathen priest and secondarily as a shaman. I have an issue with Krasskova's use of 'Heathen' because of my own definitions of what Heathen is; and with her claiming the term shaman rather than shamanist (which is a modern shamanism thing... most people don't care about the distinction). I'm generally less impressed with her work than with Raven's work, but I have read most of her books. They collaborate well, despite having different core practices. I think that Raven's work pulls me more because of my own shamanist training and interests; Krasskova has a much more devotional focus and I have some personal disagreements with her lack of transparency.

Having said that, read her Rune book (and Raven's rune stuff in his Northern Tradition series). They are the only two published people I have ever seen who work with the runespirits as distinct spirits rather than just symbols. It was very validating to see that at a point where I was second guessing myself. And of course we all support the things that validate our own UPG lol.

I also like this particular book because of it's focus on spirits outside of deities. It has deity work interwoven into it, but it's primarily about the vaettir... landvaettir, natural vaettir, animal spirits, greenwights, the vaettir that come to us to inhabit our objects... there are so few books that focus on this as a primary goal. Most talk about them in a single chapter or as an addendum to primary deity work. We have books about non-deity spirits... books like 'Ecoshamanism' (James Endredy... focuses on the larger landwights), Weather Shamanism (Nan Moss and David Corbin... focuses on weather spirits) and various totemism books (which focus on animal spirits... authors like Lupa, Yasmin Galenorn and dare I say Ted Andrews and Scott Alexander King)... but books that focus almost entirely on working with the smaller, intimate, myriad spirits that inhabit our world? There aren't many of those. And those few tend to rely on historical and mythological records rather than an actual working relationship with the spirits (for example 'Elves, Wights and Trolls' by Kveldulf Gundarsson). I think Neolithic Shamanism fills a gap that desperately needed filling.


That said, in certain places they present things that are the worst kind of nonsense, I've found some glaring errors in the historical and etymological 'truths', their translation of the meaning of the name Sleipner made my teeth hurt. Also the whole the-north-in-the-Viking-era-and-revious-was-covered-by-snow-and-ice-and-everyone-was-close-to-freezing-to-death-constantly quickly gets tiresome and displays a complete lack of knowledge about the wildly varying climate in Northern Europe, then as well as now, not to mention ignoring the fact that Bronze Age, Iron Age and Viking era was as warm in general climate as we are now. More or less.

Agreed, but I just wanted to put in some context for this particular book.

The Neolithic Shamanism book is about the ancient pre-Viking ages, not the Bronze, Iron or Viking eras (hence the title). Raven is also heavily influenced by studies in Saami shamanism. Thus in this particular book, and others, they are not talking about the temperate North, but about the far North and circumpolar areas... of the older circumpolar Ice Age and Neolithic age people... the first people in that area, who lived in a very different world to the Viking Age people. This is stated in the introduction, but only for people who have some background knowledge. It's implied, not explicit, which encourages assumptions.

Of course, that's all spirit-taught UPG, but that's what they're talking about here. Raven is usually very clear about that in his books. I feel Krasskova is less inclined to own up to it and is generally the one who talks less specifically in order to allow some form of (unwarranted) historical validation to creep in. Similar to her claiming the term 'Heathen'. I don't personally agree with that.

Ula
09 Sep 2013, 07:00
I have many books by these two but not his one. You have to keep in mind they are not mainstream and in some circles not well like. They almost always have exercises in their books that work for me. They are also both very dedicated to the gods they serve. I say read any book you want and take what you will from it. Ebooks are cheap enough I try to get and read whatever I find interesting if the reviews are good. Since you like the first chapter try it.

Jembru
09 Sep 2013, 07:48
I've never even heard of it, but I'm seriously curious after reading the comments. It sounds like a book worth looking into. I have a book, that is considered fluff by some, but that has such good messages and exercises that I read it anyway, and actually work though it every other year, when I want to revamp my spirituality again. It inspired me so much, that all the ways in which my current ritual style deviates from what I used to do as a wiccan, came from this book!

I've mentioned her before, but a former covener of mine is viciously protective of all things fluffy or flaky within paganism. She has some good arguments for why this is too, including how often the scientific community holds down groundbreaking new thinking, because the theory doesn't match the main school of thought and far from being the pioneers of human discovery the scientific community claims to be, it's largely a bunch of old toffs clinging tooth and nail to dogma. She's of the opinion that everything is worth considering and testing out before it is outright rejected. She also says that human beings have been making up history for as long as they've been able to recite and record it. She believes it is important and healthy to do the work yourself and find out what really appears to have gone on (although she points out that we place a lot of weight on evidence in the absence of concrete proof, which always leaves room for error). However, armed with our own conclusions about what is 'true', we should treat the poor history presented in books as we would treat any mythology. Mythology can make a society strong, it can inspire them, it can enchant the imagination. She also believes that one can change their perceptions of the past and used to do a lot of healing work by regressing people to bad times in their life and attempting to change their memory of it through visualisation, to make it easier for people to unlearn patterns of behaviour triggered by those events. So she basically has a concept that divides 'past' into real past and perceived past, and claims that while one happened and one did not, neither exist in the present.

She's knocked me down to size on a few occasions when I've been laughing at the likes of Amber K or Silver Ravenwolf, so I'm hesitant to rule out anything offhand anymore.

Heka
15 Sep 2013, 02:28
Thanks everyone for your replies.


I have many books by these two but not his one. You have to keep in mind they are not mainstream and in some circles not well like. They almost always have exercises in their books that work for me. They are also both very dedicated to the gods they serve. I say read any book you want and take what you will from it. Ebooks are cheap enough I try to get and read whatever I find interesting if the reviews are good. Since you like the first chapter try it.

Them not being mainstream kinda draws me more. I like finding things not everyone is finding, and not having all those existing preconceptions and opinions overshadowing it. And the excesses are something I've been looking for. Something to guide me to more daily practise. This seems to fill the gap so far. And I don't feel like I have to rush through it.


I've read all their books and personally I'm a fan. Having said that, they're just like any other authors... they aren't perfect and you can't take everything they say as gospel.

Raven is a spirit worker and shaman, while Krasskova identifies primarily as a Heathen priest and secondarily as a shaman. I have an issue with Krasskova's use of 'Heathen' because of my own definitions of what Heathen is; and with her claiming the term shaman rather than shamanist (which is a modern shamanism thing... most people don't care about the distinction). I'm generally less impressed with her work than with Raven's work, but I have read most of her books. They collaborate well, despite having different core practices. I think that Raven's work pulls me more because of my own shamanist training and interests; Krasskova has a much more devotional focus and I have some personal disagreements with her lack of transparency.

Having said that, read her Rune book (and Raven's rune stuff in his Northern Tradition series). They are the only two published people I have ever seen who work with the runespirits as distinct spirits rather than just symbols. It was very validating to see that at a point where I was second guessing myself. And of course we all support the things that validate our own UPG lol.

I also like this particular book because of it's focus on spirits outside of deities. It has deity work interwoven into it, but it's primarily about the vaettir... landvaettir, natural vaettir, animal spirits, greenwights, the vaettir that come to us to inhabit our objects... there are so few books that focus on this as a primary goal. Most talk about them in a single chapter or as an addendum to primary deity work. We have books about non-deity spirits... books like 'Ecoshamanism' (James Endredy... focuses on the larger landwights), Weather Shamanism (Nan Moss and David Corbin... focuses on weather spirits) and various totemism books (which focus on animal spirits... authors like Lupa, Yasmin Galenorn and dare I say Ted Andrews and Scott Alexander King)... but books that focus almost entirely on working with the smaller, intimate, myriad spirits that inhabit our world? There aren't many of those. And those few tend to rely on historical and mythological records rather than an actual working relationship with the spirits (for example 'Elves, Wights and Trolls' by Kveldulf Gundarsson). I think Neolithic Shamanism fills a gap that desperately needed filling.

I wondered if you'd heard of them! One of the names rang a bell when I found it and I think you mentioned it.

I really like the emphasis on the spirits too. At this stage, those big famous gods don't feel right to me. Bit the spirits are something that I feel more connected to, better able to understand, and even crave. So in that sense, it should be good!

I do plan to search out more of their books (esp. Ravens, now that you mention it) and even buy them as a hard copy. Ebooks just aren't the same.


*Lols so hard she nearly falls of the sofa*

Sorry, it's just that I got my dirty little mitts on that one just the other week :p. Now there's synchronicity for you. I've only skimmed so this is very much a preliminary judgement that may go in either direction as I read it more thoroughly.



Oh god I was so worried you were about to laugh this book into the ground.... Don't scare me like that! I still care too much what people think! Haha



All in all find it not so bad, I realise a lot of recons are going to go all militant over it because it does not conform to lore, but since Kaldera and Krasskova is mostly speaking of their own tradition I can't really see why it the lack of scholarly veracity would matter. Also they make it clear that this is not to be taken as historically correct or adhering to lore but is based on what these two have learned from the Gods and the Spirits.


That said, in certain places they present things that are the worst kind of nonsense, I've found some glaring errors in the historical and etymological 'truths', their translation of the meaning of the name Sleipner made my teeth hurt. Also the whole the-north-in-the-Viking-era-and-revious-was-covered-by-snow-and-ice-and-everyone-was-close-to-freezing-to-death-constantly quickly gets tiresome and displays a complete lack of knowledge about the wildly varying climate in Northern Europe, then as well as now, not to mention ignoring the fact that Bronze Age, Iron Age and Viking era was as warm in general climate as we are now. More or less.

Okay, rant over.



Ill take this all into consideration. Thanks.




On the other hand, a lot of the things they do, that is as in the exercises and practices I do something similar in many cases. Like the part with connecting to plant spirits, in particular of those plants we eat. It has always puzzled me that there aren't more people doing this. And the whole feeding the vaettirs. I never figured out how people thinks it is okay to take energy from a place and not give something back. And the whole thing with incorporating crystals into your working/practise.


So, my judgement. Take the contents with a whole ton of salt, if your experiences deviate from what they describe then go with your own thoughts and ideas. On the other hand, if you want something different than the usual recon song-and-dance when it comes to Nothern Tradition, it looks like not a bad book. But as stated above, don't rely too much on the historical, etymological, ect. facts.


But then, I've only skimmed so far. I may have to get back to you later.

As I said before the exercises are what I'm enjoying the most. Their experiences and justifications are interesting.

Thanks again guys.

Rae'ya
15 Sep 2013, 23:21
I wondered if you'd heard of them! One of the names rang a bell when I found it and I think you mentioned it.

I'm actually a contributing artist in Raven's 'The Northern Shamanic Herbal'. Only one illustration... I wish I'd done more but the other two herbs I wanted to do were already taken. But yeah. lol

Heka
16 Sep 2013, 02:43
I'm actually a contributing artist in Raven's 'The Northern Shamanic Herbal'. Only one illustration... I wish I'd done more but the other two herbs I wanted to do were already taken. But yeah. lol

That is epically cool! How did you manage to do that? Does that mean you've met him? Signed copies? :P

Lokabrenna
19 Sep 2013, 07:07
I read it. I posted a review of it on my blog (https://adventuresinvanaheim.wordpress.com/2013/08/29/review-neolithic-shamanism-spirit-work-in-the-norse-tradition/) if you want my more in-depth opinion.

My major problems with it:

1) The authors frequently talk down to people who are not shamans or spiritworkers. As in this quote about dealing with well spirits:


“If you tried it [Well divination] without first contacting or propitiating the Well Spirit and it worked, it was probably because the spirit decided that it liked you. Instead of hoping blindly, introduce yourself and be a real spirit-worker, not merely a superstitious peasant.” (p. 199)

What I find interesting about this quote is that those same "superstitious peasants" are the ones that kept Pagan traditions alive today when the upper classes converted. This just smacks of biting the hand that feeds you.

The quote I found most troubling was this one:


Aren’t you ripping off these ancient peoples and their cultures?

Because these are our ancestors, we would say that we have a fairly solid right to do what we’re doing, if you use the argument that one’s ancestral traditions are an inheritance. Frankly, though, we’d do this even if they weren’t our ancestors. Political correctness aside, we do this because that’s what the Gods who own us and the spirits who work with us say that we have to do. If we had been grabbed up by, say, Native American Gods and spirits, we’d be doing that even though neither of us have a drop of that blood, and we’d just have to find a way to pay back the lineage that was not ours by birth, and deal with the opprobrium that would be heaped upon us. (p. 11)

And here is my response:

"I find this cavalier dismissal of cultural appropriation to be quite disturbing, especially the way “political correctness” in invoked (in my experienced, folks tend to cry “Political correctness!” when they want an excuse to be assholes) and claiming “but my ancestors said I had to do it!” does not absolve you from craptastic behaviour” nor mean that you are not participating in a culture of oppression against minority cultures. Seriously, my dad has First Nations ancestry though his grandmother, and that does NOT give him the right to take from those people."

I would say it is ONLY a good resource if you're interested in spirit work WITHIN THE AUTHORS' TRADITION, but there are definitely better books out there.

BTW, in case you're wondering about my bias, I'm publishing a devotional through Kaldera's press (Asphodel) and, let's say I have some....issues....with recent things Krasskova has said on the interwebs. However, I tried to keep my personal feelings out of it and write as balanced a review as I could.

Ula
19 Sep 2013, 10:02
I read it. I posted a review of it on my blog (https://adventuresinvanaheim.wordpress.com/2013/08/29/review-neolithic-shamanism-spirit-work-in-the-norse-tradition/) if you want my more in-depth opinion.

My major problems with it:

1) The authors frequently talk down to people who are not shamans or spiritworkers. As in this quote about dealing with well spirits:



What I find interesting about this quote is that those same "superstitious peasants" are the ones that kept Pagan traditions alive today when the upper classes converted. This just smacks of biting the hand that feeds you.

The quote I found most troubling was this one:



And here is my response:

"I find this cavalier dismissal of cultural appropriation to be quite disturbing, especially the way “political correctness” in invoked (in my experienced, folks tend to cry “Political correctness!” when they want an excuse to be assholes) and claiming “but my ancestors said I had to do it!” does not absolve you from craptastic behaviour” nor mean that you are not participating in a culture of oppression against minority cultures. Seriously, my dad has First Nations ancestry though his grandmother, and that does NOT give him the right to take from those people."

I would say it is ONLY a good resource if you're interested in spirit work WITHIN THE AUTHORS' TRADITION, but there are definitely better books out there.

BTW, in case you're wondering about my bias, I'm publishing a devotional through Kaldera's press (Asphodel) and, let's say I have some....issues....with recent things Krasskova has said on the interwebs. However, I tried to keep my personal feelings out of it and write as balanced a review as I could.

You haven't tried to be balanced at all. You were very supportive of these works until your falling out with them including threatening to leave the gods. You have insulted many in this particular community. I am shocked they would publish your book and even more shocked with all you have said your utilizing this community for something that will make you money.

Lokabrenna
20 Sep 2013, 08:07
You haven't tried to be balanced at all. You were very supportive of these works until your falling out with them including threatening to leave the gods. You have insulted many in this particular community. I am shocked they would publish your book and even more shocked with all you have said your utilizing this community for something that will make you money.

I don't recall ever threatening to leave the gods based on what they said, I do recall saying that they have been saying things lately that might drive others away from the gods, and, regardless of my arrangement with Kaldera (which, I might add, was arranged long before the kerfluffles in question) doesn't mean that they are beyond criticism, or that I'm just going to sit there and keep my mouth shut about things that others might find problematic. If you read my review, you would see that I encourage reading the book for yourself and deciding whether it's going to be useful to you, and you'll also notice that I recommended one of their other books if this one wasn't to your liking.

I fail to see how I've insulted many in the community, especially since I count Northern Tradition Pagans (some, you will be surprised to know, who are also critical of Krasskova and Kaldera) as my friends and none of the contributors to the devotional have said anything about it beyond "when is it coming out?" In any case, it's a bit too late to back out now.

Optimistic discord
20 Sep 2013, 08:50
I don't recall ever threatening to leave the gods based on what they said, I do recall saying that they have been saying things lately that might drive others away from the gods, and, regardless of my arrangement with Kaldera (which, I might add, was arranged long before the kerfluffles in question) doesn't mean that they are beyond criticism, or that I'm just going to sit there and keep my mouth shut about things that others might find problematic. If you read my review, you would see that I encourage reading the book for yourself and deciding whether it's going to be useful to you, and you'll also notice that I recommended one of their other books if this one wasn't to your liking.

I fail to see how I've insulted many in the community, especially since I count Northern Tradition Pagans (some, you will be surprised to know, who are also critical of Krasskova and Kaldera) as my friends and none of the contributors to the devotional have said anything about it beyond "when is it coming out?" In any case, it's a bit too late to back out now.

I liked your review, Its honest , you explain why you have problems with elements of it without trashing the entire book or just telling people not to read it.
Having read your review I am more tempted to read it that I was before.

Heka
30 Jun 2014, 01:54
Putting it in this thread, cos ForumRunner.

Continuing to read this, just read the Green World section. Anyone work with Greenwights? What about local trees? I find often I get turned off this kind of this because I live in Oz, and there's no real guidance of this kind for my area. Nor is there generally big old Elder or Juniper trees around.

Rae'ya
30 Jun 2014, 04:13
Putting it in this thread, cos ForumRunner.

Continuing to read this, just read the Green World section. Anyone work with Greenwights? What about local trees? I find often I get turned off this kind of this because I live in Oz, and there's no real guidance of this kind for my area. Nor is there generally big old Elder or Juniper trees around.

I don't do a lot with greenwights, aside from the few in my little garden (the roses, mainly). But I have had some amazing experiences with things like the huge Tingle trees in the Valley of the Giants in WA. And I always try to acknowledge the greewights when we go bushwalking, and we visit Botanical gardens when we travel to pay homage to them also.

It is harder in Aus, because there's just no one out there talking about our native plants when they write books about herbs and/or greenwights. But then I look at greenwights the same as I do animal guides... rather than just reading someone else's experiences, go out there and form your own. Research the plant itself from a botanical point of view, then sit with it and connect. Start with the plants in your actual garden... connect with the individual spirits of the plant first, then with the overarching grandparent spirit.

Greenwights are a bit like animal guides. Everyone seems to talk about the big ones like Oak and Elder and whatever. Think of those as the equivalent of Wolf and Eagle. Then think of our little Banskia or Bottlebrush as the equivalent to some of the less 'impressive' animal guides. Just because they aren't big and flashy doesn't mean that they can't be profound guides. Sometimes it helps to find the plants the would fill the same niche or have the same significance as some of the obvious European species. SA Blue Gum, for example. Many of the greenwights are intimately linked with the landwights, especially the big trees.

Also keep in mind that we DO have a lot of the mentioned plants here, we just call them different things. Soursobs, for example, are actually a type of Wood Sorrel. And Wood Sorrel tends to be in a lot of the European and US centric herbals.

Heka
30 Jun 2014, 04:49
I don't do a lot with greenwights, aside from the few in my little garden (the roses, mainly). But I have had some amazing experiences with things like the huge Tingle trees in the Valley of the Giants in WA. And I always try to acknowledge the greewights when we go bushwalking, and we visit Botanical gardens when we travel to pay homage to them also.

It is harder in Aus, because there's just no one out there talking about our native plants when they write books about herbs and/or greenwights. But then I look at greenwights the same as I do animal guides... rather than just reading someone else's experiences, go out there and form your own. Research the plant itself from a botanical point of view, then sit with it and connect. Start with the plants in your actual garden... connect with the individual spirits of the plant first, then with the overarching grandparent spirit.

Greenwights are a bit like animal guides. Everyone seems to talk about the big ones like Oak and Elder and whatever. Think of those as the equivalent of Wolf and Eagle. Then think of our little Banskia or Bottlebrush as the equivalent to some of the less 'impressive' animal guides. Just because they aren't big and flashy doesn't mean that they can't be profound guides. Sometimes it helps to find the plants the would fill the same niche or have the same significance as some of the obvious European species. SA Blue Gum, for example. Many of the greenwights are intimately linked with the landwights, especially the big trees.

Also keep in mind that we DO have a lot of the mentioned plants here, we just call them different things. Soursobs, for example, are actually a type of Wood Sorrel. And Wood Sorrel tends to be in a lot of the European and US centric herbals.

I think mostly this comes down to my complete lack of actual research. I know I need to go out and do this myself, but it's also a long way off. I've fallen completely out of whatever practise I was doing, and am no where near the levels of dedication etc described in the book. It's just me expressing frustration at my lack of progress, dedication or knowledge atm I guess. Ah well. I'm sure I'll get there, someday. Lol

Tylluan Penry
30 Jun 2014, 09:41
I'll throw my hat into the ring too, for anyone who's interested... Sacred Shadows, Ice Age Spirituality, which is available as a very cheap Kindle download. (It's also available as a paperback from the Wolfenhowle Press Website - but outside the UK the postage costs tend to make Kindle a better option.) You can look inside the book too for an idea what is there.

No exercises in this book - just a lot of information about spiritual aspects of the very ancient past. All properly referenced, too! The idea was to try and reach out to the ancient past we each carry within us... because I believe that the past never really goes away, we have it with us all the time. It does briefly refer to shamanism, within the context of characters such as the Bison Men or the 'sorcerer' at Les Trois Freres.

Ooh, and one other thing... the Iron Age, Bronze Age etc., reached the far north MUCH later than it did the areas around the Mediterranean. These thawed out first after the Iron Age and then, while some tribes stayed put, others followed their herds northwards.

My own favourite part of Sacred Shadows was discovering the engravings of La Marche - sheer magic!

Ophidia
05 Jul 2014, 10:47
All the neolithic Paganism I ever needed I got from the Clan of the Cave Bear books :P


My own favourite part of Sacred Shadows was discovering the engravings of La Marche - sheer magic!

OMGs, yes! The people! (I love Chauvet, too :) )

Tylluan Penry
05 Jul 2014, 14:00
All the neolithic Paganism I ever needed I got from the Clan of the Cave Bear books :P



OMGs, yes! The people! (I love Chauvet, too :) )

The Clan of the Cave Bear books are really incredibly well researched. I find it sad though when people lump together things like the Venus of Willdendorf and say, the Sorcerer at Les Trois Freres cave and just think of them as 'ancient.' The sorcerer figure is c. 13,000 years old, and the Venus is 13,000 years older than that again. Really, really mind boggling!

Ophidia
05 Jul 2014, 16:00
The Clan of the Cave Bear books are really incredibly well researched. I find it sad though when people lump together things like the Venus of Willdendorf and say, the Sorcerer at Les Trois Freres cave and just think of them as 'ancient.' The sorcerer figure is c. 13,000 years old, and the Venus is 13,000 years older than that again. Really, really mind boggling!

Well, there's 'ancient' and then there's 'really ancient', lol. I'm currently trying to carve a wax Venus and it's so frustrating. I'm like, if it's so easy a cave person could do it, why can't I???

B. de Corbin
05 Jul 2014, 16:45
I'm currently trying to carve a wax Venus and it's so frustrating. I'm like, if it's so easy a cave person could do it, why can't I???

They didn't have a lot of distractions in their spare time... Aside from saber tooth tigers, and big bad bears... :p

Try warming your knife up a bit with a lighter every now and then. It'll go through the wax like a hot knife through wax.

(Captain Obvious steps in to assist - I look great in the uniform)

Rae'ya
05 Jul 2014, 18:57
I'll throw my hat into the ring too, for anyone who's interested... Sacred Shadows, Ice Age Spirituality, which is available as a very cheap Kindle download. (It's also available as a paperback from the Wolfenhowle Press Website - but outside the UK the postage costs tend to make Kindle a better option.) You can look inside the book too for an idea what is there.

No exercises in this book - just a lot of information about spiritual aspects of the very ancient past. All properly referenced, too! The idea was to try and reach out to the ancient past we each carry within us... because I believe that the past never really goes away, we have it with us all the time. It does briefly refer to shamanism, within the context of characters such as the Bison Men or the 'sorcerer' at Les Trois Freres.

Ooh, and one other thing... the Iron Age, Bronze Age etc., reached the far north MUCH later than it did the areas around the Mediterranean. These thawed out first after the Iron Age and then, while some tribes stayed put, others followed their herds northwards.

My own favourite part of Sacred Shadows was discovering the engravings of La Marche - sheer magic!

Hah you've just reminded me that this book of yours is on my to-buy list!

Tylluan Penry
05 Jul 2014, 23:07
Hah you've just reminded me that this book of yours is on my to-buy list!
Thanks - if you're in australia then definitely cheapest to get it on Kindle. And an Australian buyer did review it too! :)

- - - Updated - - -


Well, there's 'ancient' and then there's 'really ancient', lol. I'm currently trying to carve a wax Venus and it's so frustrating. I'm like, if it's so easy a cave person could do it, why can't I???

I think the thing to remember is that they were considerably more convinced than we give them credit for. They used crayons (yes, honestly, this isn't a von Daniken flight of fancy) they did embroidery (which is why I love the La Marche engravings.) I've attached one to this post... I think the figure is just gorgeous, and nigh on about 14,000 years old! The detailed headdress isn't like we'd expect and yet these engravings are hard to find out about... I had to go through about ten journals (all in French) and translate them. Really, really hard work. For a long time they were thought to be forgeries but in 2002 it was agreed they were genuine. (Much the same happened at Lascaux, believe it or not!)

Heka
06 Jul 2014, 01:43
All the neolithic Paganism I ever needed I got from the Clan of the Cave Bear books :P


Lol yes! I have one goddess figure I call a 'doni' and I'd love to be a zelandonii haha. I really want to do the thing where you get up every sunrise/set to mark where the sun come up etc and see the solstices and equinoxes.

Its a shame you can't join the zelandonii as a legitimate career path like you could then hahs

Ophidia
06 Jul 2014, 12:55
I think the thing to remember is that they were considerably more convinced than we give them credit for. They used crayons (yes, honestly, this isn't a von Daniken flight of fancy) they did embroidery (which is why I love the La Marche engravings.) I've attached one to this post... I think the figure is just gorgeous, and nigh on about 14,000 years old! The detailed headdress isn't like we'd expect and yet these engravings are hard to find out about... I had to go through about ten journals (all in French) and translate them. Really, really hard work. For a long time they were thought to be forgeries but in 2002 it was agreed they were genuine. (Much the same happened at Lascaux, believe it or not!)

This is part of what I find so frustrating about people who like to give credit to aliens for ancient art and architecture. Humans have been pretty damned clever for a looooong time, and our ancient ancestors were no slouches.

Heka
01 Sep 2014, 00:27
I finished the book.

I loved it.

I admire it immensely.

Now I need to go back and do the exercises.

There is my problem.

Teutonicus
05 Sep 2014, 23:42
I'm currently reading the Northern Tradition for the Solitary Practitioner by Galina Krasskova and Raven Kaldera. So far it's a very affirmative exploration of devotional practices that should not be overlooked by anyone of our faith, regardless of what end of the spectrum we end up on. Odinists and Asatruar alike can gain something from this particular book if approached with an open mind. I think there's far too much divide within our community as a whole and we get so hung up on being right that we forget about what brought us to this path in the first place: hearing the calling of the Gods in one form or another. "Northern Tradition for the Solitary Practitioner" does a good job of recalibrating our focus on our personal connection with the Gods, which in turn can only strengthen our community.

Juniper
09 Jul 2015, 15:46
Reopened by request

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Jembru
09 Jul 2015, 18:07
Reopened by request

Sent from my mobile device using Forum Runner

Thank you!

Well, I've read a little way through the book now and I'm so pleased I ordered it. I'm also glad that I had read this thread, because having little previous knowledge of the true history, I could have easily been taken in by their version of it. Of course, I wasn't interested in that side of it anyway, so I'm not too put off by their lack of historical accuracy.

As a workbook, it suits me wonderfully so far. I almost cried when I read the first chapter (not including the intro), and they started talking about the spirits that occupy the home. I've mentioned here and there on the forum that I 'talk to my flat and it answers'. I also have a dialogue with the spirit of the house I work in. My family and some of my colleagues know about this side of me, but I've always kind of played it down on PF out of fear of ridicule. Like 'oh dear, look at Jembru with her little imaginary friends', despite actually having much I'd love to ask and discuss about these spirits. Somehow, reading that there are other people with similar little imaginary friends validated my experience. In fact, I rushed over and topped up my offering bowl, (which I had instinctively placed in the kitchen anyway, which is exactly where the book suggests it should go; although I maybe read or was told this somewhere before and I've just forgotten), as it had been a shamefully long time since I last left anything out. On that subject though, I was slightly taken aback by their comment about 'wiccan types' not leaving offerings after rituals. I don't know if it's just that the word 'wicca' is used much more loosely by certain groups in the states, but I don't know any wiccan who wouldn't show due respect and leave an offering after a ritual. If I were still wiccan, I'd have taken offence to the suggestion that wicca is less spiritually connected than their Northern Tradition shamanism. It reminded me of the Christian bashing you used to see in earlier wiccan/pagan publications. But of course, perhaps it was a genuine observation, in which case.. shame on those people.

I love the idea of the 9 worlds, although due to my previous experience of a similar system I''m not comfortable with them not including the Earth in their 9 worlds. I don't think they explained it (unless I missed it). I would argue that it is as much a 'world' as any of the other categories they suggest. Maybe 10 worlds just didn't sound mystical enough.

While the book frequently talks about things that are already part of my practices (or at least were previously when I was more filly engaged in my spiritual life), it has also introduced me to some useful concepts. Most notably, is the part where they said that the physical body is actually part of the soul. As someone who's quality of life has been battered by BDD (both in the traditional sense of obsessing over my unfortunate facial features, as well as hating my general body shape), this is a concept that could potentially be extremely healing for me. It's a great place to start in making peace with my body.

There's a long road ahead of me, but I feel that things have finally started to fit into place in my spiritual life. This book has helped me to see much more clearly that I already have a good workable system already outlined in my BoS. I've been doubting myself for too long I think. I'm feeling really positive that over the coming months, I'll find myself on much steadier ground! Oh and of course, I can be in very little doubt now that I am definitely a shamanist!

MaskedOne
09 Jul 2015, 18:22
I love the idea of the 9 worlds, although due to my previous experience of a similar system I''m not comfortable with them not including the Earth in their 9 worlds. I don't think they explained it (unless I missed it). I would argue that it is as much a 'world' as any of the other categories they suggest. Maybe 10 worlds just didn't sound mystical enough.


The book in question explicitly treats Earth and Midgard as separate? Some think Earth = Midgard, some think Midgard is separate but sort of like Earth. I haven't read the book so I don't know which way they go on the issue.

Jembru
09 Jul 2015, 18:41
The book in question explicitly treats Earth and Midgard as separate? Some think Earth = Midgard, some think Midgard is separate but sort of like Earth. I haven't read the book so I don't know which way they go on the issue.

It doesn't explicitly address this actually. Or not that I've discovered so far. It calls the earth the 'starting place', teaching about land spirits, the concept of grounding and being fully in your body. Then it moves onto these 9 worlds which are the worlds of the sun (the golden world), moon (the silver world), plants (the green world), animals (the brown world), water (the blue world), fire (the red world), craft (the grey world), air (the white world) and ancestors (the black world). Probably not in that order, although the order you work through them, so long as you started at earth, isn't important (so I'm jumping ahead into the Green World because the summer seems an appropriate time, and because I've already worked with the sun and moon when I did my temple work).

MaskedOne
09 Jul 2015, 19:02
Okay, different context, you mentioned 9 worlds and the authors of the book mentioned a post or two up deal with a lot of Norse Mythos so I was thinking of the Norse world tree. You seem to be dealing with something else.

Rae'ya
10 Jul 2015, 03:12
Well, I've read a little way through the book now and I'm so pleased I ordered it. I'm also glad that I had read this thread, because having little previous knowledge of the true history, I could have easily been taken in by their version of it. Of course, I wasn't interested in that side of it anyway, so I'm not too put off by their lack of historical accuracy.

My experience is that you ALWAYS have to take the historical introductions with a grain of salt. I've not read one single book by a pagan (non academic) author that I took at face value when it comes to history and etymology. Pagan authors are notorious for not being particularly accurate when it comes to history.


As a workbook, it suits me wonderfully so far. I almost cried when I read the first chapter (not including the intro), and they started talking about the spirits that occupy the home. I've mentioned here and there on the forum that I 'talk to my flat and it answers'. I also have a dialogue with the spirit of the house I work in. My family and some of my colleagues know about this side of me, but I've always kind of played it down on PF out of fear of ridicule. Like 'oh dear, look at Jembru with her little imaginary friends', despite actually having much I'd love to ask and discuss about these spirits. Somehow, reading that there are other people with similar little imaginary friends validated my experience.

House wights (husvaettir is the term used by NT and Heathen folks) are very common in European traditions, though they can be called different things. One of the few books that I kept out of storage while we're in the housing twilight zone (because I'm only halfway through it) is 'The Tradition of Household Spirits' by academic Claude Lecouteux, which has a lot of information regarding house wights across different European cultures... not so much from a spiritual point of view but from a literary, archaelogical and historical point of view. It's quite an interesting read if you're interested in some historical validation for your experiences.

Personally Torey and I were very careful not to engage any husvaettir in our rental, because we knew we wouldn't be there forever. But as our own house is built we'll be inviting a husvaettr into the new building. There is some debate about whether husvaettir will stay with a house when you move out or come with you, and we didn't think it was worth the chance when we knew it was only a temporary home. I'm inclined to think that true husvaettr as described in historical sources are tied to the house, not the people who live in it... and I'm also inclined to think that they may sometimes be the source of supposed 'hauntings' and emotional personalities of old houses. Our rental had a cat spirit which was there when we moved in and which we invited to come with us, but which opted to stay behind in the house. I'm not sure I'd call it a husvaettr though! Though we do have a household of spirits who are a part of our 'family' and who are tied to us and certain objects of ours rather than the building we live in.

I think you'll find that the phenomenon is far less rare than you thought it was, especially amongst people of Heathen, NT or Celtic persuasion. They just might call them things like brownies, domovoi, kobolds, tomte, nissies, boggarts or somesuch. Folklore (rather than religion) is an excellent source for researching house wights and other household spirits.


In fact, I rushed over and topped up my offering bowl, (which I had instinctively placed in the kitchen anyway, which is exactly where the book suggests it should go; although I maybe read or was told this somewhere before and I've just forgotten), as it had been a shamefully long time since I last left anything out.

The traditional place for offerings to the husvaettir is the hearth, which in the modern home usually translates as somewhere in the kitchen lol. Traditionally, the hearth was the centre of the home, it was where the home was heated from, where you cooked at, and where you gathered in the evening. Modern homes are a bit different, and with more rooms and more contraptions there is much less of a central 'heart' of the house, so to speak. Most people instinctively feel that it's in the kitchen, but the idea is that the husvaettir live where the heart of the home is.


On that subject though, I was slightly taken aback by their comment about 'wiccan types' not leaving offerings after rituals. I don't know if it's just that the word 'wicca' is used much more loosely by certain groups in the states, but I don't know any wiccan who wouldn't show due respect and leave an offering after a ritual. If I were still wiccan, I'd have taken offence to the suggestion that wicca is less spiritually connected than their Northern Tradition shamanism. It reminded me of the Christian bashing you used to see in earlier wiccan/pagan publications. But of course, perhaps it was a genuine observation, in which case.. shame on those people.

Unfortunately, both the authors suffer from a case of 'we must prove we aren't fluffy nonsense New Agers by being biased against anything neo-Wiccan'. It's something I've seen A LOT amongst Heathens, NT'ers, Demonolators and Shamanists. I think I've switched off to this fault, and automatically filter out any reference to it in any book I read... but it's not an uncommon thing to read when you start getting into certain other communities. I think it's absolutely like the Christian shaming... and the 'We don't even BELIEVE in the Devil' that many Wiccans proclaim when accused of being Satanist. To me it smacks of over compensating and helps perpetuate misinformation.


While the book frequently talks about things that are already part of my practices (or at least were previously when I was more filly engaged in my spiritual life), it has also introduced me to some useful concepts. Most notably, is the part where they said that the physical body is actually part of the soul. As someone who's quality of life has been battered by BDD (both in the traditional sense of obsessing over my unfortunate facial features, as well as hating my general body shape), this is a concept that could potentially be extremely healing for me. It's a great place to start in making peace with my body.

Any time you want to discuss the soul complex, let me know.

We call the body the 'lich' in the Northern faiths. There are a few spellings, by I use the Old Norse terms for my soul complex parts, which in my personal documents is 'Lík', but which I usually write as 'lich' online (because it's the most common spelling and the more likely to get you a hit from Googling). There are a number of other soul parts, but the lich is always a good place to start! The relationship between the lich (the physical body) and the hame (the astral body) is also a good place to start, especially because things like BDD and gender dysphoria are often connected to the fact that the lich and hame don't match.

It's also quite difficult to do much in the way of shamanic journeying if you don't have a good grasp of how your physical and astral bodies work, interact and connect with each other.


It doesn't explicitly address this actually. Or not that I've discovered so far. It calls the earth the 'starting place', teaching about land spirits, the concept of grounding and being fully in your body. Then it moves onto these 9 worlds which are the worlds of the sun (the golden world), moon (the silver world), plants (the green world), animals (the brown world), water (the blue world), fire (the red world), craft (the grey world), air (the white world) and ancestors (the black world). Probably not in that order, although the order you work through them, so long as you started at earth, isn't important (so I'm jumping ahead into the Green World because the summer seems an appropriate time, and because I've already worked with the sun and moon when I did my temple work).

Don't get too caught up in this nine world system... it's a completely arbitrary system that was made up specifically for this book. I suspect they used nine worlds because of the symbolism of the number nine for NT and Heathen folk, and because it splits up the exercises into manageable groups that easily relate to everyday life. They aren't tangible worlds in the sense that they are places in the Otherworlds... they're just a literary and spiritual tool to help you work through the content of the book.

Ula
10 Jul 2015, 05:44
It doesn't explicitly address this actually. Or not that I've discovered so far. It calls the earth the 'starting place', teaching about land spirits, the concept of grounding and being fully in your body. Then it moves onto these 9 worlds which are the worlds of the sun (the golden world), moon (the silver world), plants (the green world), animals (the brown world), water (the blue world), fire (the red world), craft (the grey world), air (the white world) and ancestors (the black world). Probably not in that order, although the order you work through them, so long as you started at earth, isn't important (so I'm jumping ahead into the Green World because the summer seems an appropriate time, and because I've already worked with the sun and moon when I did my temple work).

I can't remember if it's this book or one of his (Raven Kaldera) others where he talks about journeying and seeing both the Earth and Migard at the same time. I have been under the impression he views them as similar but on separate planes.

Tylluan Penry
10 Jul 2015, 06:13
My experience is that you ALWAYS have to take the historical introductions with a grain of salt. I've not read one single book by a pagan (non academic) author that I took at face value when it comes to history and etymology. Pagan authors are notorious for not being particularly accurate when it comes to history.


You do have to be very careful. But I will say, as an author myself, that I reference carefully (Harvard system) and have a full bibliography at the back of my books. That's often a good starting place but even then, proceed with caution. You would be amazed how many times I've checked someone's reference in an academic journal only to find that it says nothing of the sort being claimed!

Jembru
10 Jul 2015, 11:29
Any time you want to discuss the soul complex, let me know.

How does now (http://www.paganforum.com/showthread.php?10405-Soul-Physiology&p=185654#post185654) suit you? I started a thread because I know how long our posts get, which is too long for a side topic! ^^

I'll make another post for discussing house spirits in due time, but I was only meant to spend 30 minutes on that last thread and it's already gone to an hour and 15. I really should get some studying done before I leave for work.


Don't get too caught up in this nine world system... it's a completely arbitrary system that was made up specifically for this book. I suspect they used nine worlds because of the symbolism of the number nine for NT and Heathen folk, and because it splits up the exercises into manageable groups that easily relate to everyday life. They aren't tangible worlds in the sense that they are places in the Otherworlds... they're just a literary and spiritual tool to help you work through the content of the book.

Aaand... now I get the point of those inner temples! It's been bugging me because I never finished my work there. I never quite understood where Francesca was heading with it because she would roll out her course gradually, letting previous lessons lead into more advanced techniques gradually.

I guess she was just using these temples as a convenient way of organising my inner work so she could better lead me through it. It's not like she should watch what was happening in Rotokia from some magic mirror after all. Well I'm less concerned about messing it up then!

Rae'ya
12 Jul 2015, 21:12
I love the idea of the 9 worlds, although due to my previous experience of a similar system I''m not comfortable with them not including the Earth in their 9 worlds. I don't think they explained it (unless I missed it). I would argue that it is as much a 'world' as any of the other categories they suggest. Maybe 10 worlds just didn't sound mystical enough.

I thought I might expand a bit for you on 'physical body stuff' or the World of Earth sort of stuff.

I'm currently working on my own set of elemental inspired categories for magickal and spiritual practice, and Earth is a good place to start for me because it's the element I resonate with the most. It's also the element that many consider to be the most spiritually boring, because it's very much involved with the physical body and the physical world around us... which a lot of people don't think are magickal enough to be talked about much. The other reason it is often overlooked is that it involves many things that we take for granted, and forget to talk about, because they are foundational things.

So here's my list of Earthy things to work on from a spiritual perspective...

- Grounding! Not just grounding before or after work, but maintaining a permanent ground channel that you can move energy up and down.
- Shielding. Basic shield and advanced shields. Psychic defense is an Earth sort of thing for me, which can be expanded into other elemental realms with advanced techniques.

- Nutrition (not cooking... that's Fire... but nutrition)
- Anatomy.
- Physical health.
- I know, boring, boring. But the physical body is your greatest connection to Earth energy... so looking after it is one of the best ways to explore Earth. Our flesh and bones are the dirt and soil and rock of our bodies. It's our foundation. Our stability. Bodywork is one of the most important things when working with Earth. It doesn't mean the perfect healthy diet with the perfect healthy body. It doesn't mean daily gym visits and endless workouts. It means understanding how your body works and what it needs. It means looking after your basic needs. It means trying to tweak your diet and lifestyle to provide your physical vehicle with the fuel and conditions it needs to be able to carry you around. It means treating your body with the respect and consideration that it deserves. It also means trying not to hate your body so much, which can be really, really hard for some people.

- Genealogy and History. This can fall into Ancestor work, or it can simply be an investigation into your personal history and that of your family. I've always thought that history was a part of Earth, because it's the foundation and the place from which we came. Personal history, family history and the history of the place you inhabit are probably the most relevant to a personal practice that is rooted in a sense of place.

- Geology and rocks. The dressed-up version is crystals and crystal healing, but the rocks in your backyard are just as profound as the ones at the New Age store.

- Plants and plant energies (as above)
- Herbs and herbal medicine (as above)
- Gardening (as above). The best kind of gardening for Earth is a vegetable and/or herb garden, for a number of reasons... till the earth with your own hands, learn about the seasonal cycles, learn about the nutrition of the soil, learn about how plants work and what they need, learn about how seeds germinate, learn about the cycle of life, interact with plants on a daily basis, act out a prioritization of life when you decide to kill off weeds and harmful insects, learn about beneficial insects, learn about companion planting, learn about the miniature ecosystem of your backyard or greenhouse or balcony pot-plant garden, learn sustainable harvesting to get the most out of your plants... and then eat what you've grown, putting that energy back into yourself, nurturing yourself with something that you nurtured and bought to life and harvested.
- Wildcrafting, which is gathering herbs and edible plants from the wild.

- Animals and animal energies (which Neolithic Shamanism gives it's own world)
- Raising companion animals.
- Raising livestock. Pretty much what I said above only with animals rather than plants.
- Hunting and fishing. I include fishing because the whole idea is about the cycle of life, nourishing yourself with the body of another being, respecting life and death and making yourself a part of that cycle. In that sense it makes no difference what element the animal lives in... life, death and nutrition are Earth.

- Landvaettir. Meet your local land spirit/s (genus locii). Learn how the land spirit interacts with the spirits of the plants and animals that inhabit it (including you). Develop a relationship with your land spirit if it's amenable (they aren't all interested in interacting with people).
- Check out the indigenous or historical accounts of your landscape, any folklore from the local area etc. In some cases you might find names for the land spirit, or the identity of local sprites and spirits that come through in your place.
- City spirits. Cities have spirits too. Meet it and learn how it grew from the land spirit it invaded. If you live in a city your land spirit may not be interested in interacting with you, but the city spirit probably is. City spirits thrive off their humans, so they are almost always open to interacting with people.

- Bioregional practices of any sort are a beautiful way to connect with Earth energy.

- House spirits
- Household management. Yes that means cleaning and housework, but it also means managing your assets and resources and running a household effectively. For the most part we've lost the sense of pride in running a household... with modern society it's almost become taboo to talk about running a household, lest we fall into outdated gender stereotypes of the housewife cooking and cleaning all day. But that's not what it's about. Running a household effectively is still an art, and it falls into the realm of Earth.

- Physical labor
- Occupation/job
- Hobbies that involve physical crafts and construction of any kind.
- Your job is in the realm of Earth, regardless of what it is, because it's your job. But it's difficult to do anything spiritual with your job because most people can't work in an area that feeds their spirituality. So falling back of physical labor or hobbies for Earth is helpful. Anything where you work with your hands is Earth, even if it includes other elements. I think that's part of why Neolithic Shamanism gives Craft it's own 'world'... because there is lots of overlap. But generally, if you are constructing something or making something that has a practical use, it's primarily an Earth type craft.

- Fertility workings
- Death, rot, and decay and all the workings that can go along with those
- Defensive and protective workings
- Binding, shielding, warding etc
- Colour work

Jembru
13 Jul 2015, 00:50
Wow! That needs printing off and stapling to something.. haha.

There are plenty of ideas there to get me going. I'd never considered that history could be an earth lesson, but it makes perfect sense. Rocks have tremendous memory after all (although I have also found that they have less concept of the passage of time on a smaller scale, so they may miss the fact that mankind has modernized and changed since those first tribal people who walked over them. It all just happened so fast).

On the subject of rocks actually. Using regular stones is actually something I've done for a long time. In fact I am sure there's a blurry photo of my favourite stone on photobucket, that I posted on PF before the crash..

http://i872.photobucket.com/albums/ab290/jembru/Paintingandrock007.jpg (http://s872.photobucket.com/user/jembru/media/Paintingandrock007.jpg.html)

There's the fella.. I'm surprised it's showing up as large as it is. I used to have to resize photos because back in the day images appeared massive on the forum.

I've forgotten what he is now actually (geologists, help!), but I was gifted him by my ex girlfriend along with a few other large stones that I've forged strong bonds with. I call this stone 'Big Grey', and he's definitely my favourite stone of all. I stopped buying crystals many years ago, but I will still use them too if the mood takes me (I never meditate with them though, I prefer my non-shiny friends for that), and I keep them clean and cared for.

I should take up rock divination again. I used to be good at it, but the last time I did this successfully is a bitter memory.

Understandably, my High Priest hadn't wanted me to go to Germany. He knew it was doomed to fail and whenever he spoke to me about it, he could hear my own spirit allies screaming at him to make me stop, because I'd stopped hearing them. However, he knew too, that my leaving would be the end of the coven. We'd broken away from the coven we'd been in together due to personal differences, and he'd had hopes of gathering together some of the members of the coven I'd been in years earlier, as some of us wanted to work together again, and the previous HPS had refused to even consider them on the grounds that they had more experience than her (she was a self-appointed HPS), so wouldn't be able to respect her position (probably true, actually). So I saw his comments as having an ulterior motive. He knew I was good at speaking to the stones, so he drove us down to the beach, hoping that I'd see my fate for myself.

We walked along the beach until I felt a pull towards one of the stones. I always look for a stone with distinct sides for this. I can still see the shape of this stone vividly in my memory. It was sandstone, and there was a diagonal line across one side, where it was raised (where the movement of waves would have caused ripples). I spent a few moments with it, and images started to form. I saw clearly that things were going to be bad in Germany. I wouldn't find work, Gattsu would reject me, I'd take years to recover from the damage the experience would cause. Yet I didn't want to believe any of it. I started to tell myself that I was a strong enough witch that I could change fate. I just wouldn't listen to reason because I was blinded by my desire for Gattsu. So I left, the coven was never reformed, and my HP moved down south where I believe he started a successful coven of his own.

I stopped being able to hear the stones after that (and I can't read tarot anymore either, because they too had been telling me what I didn't want to hear). In fact, I've never again been able to hear my guides clearly since that period, because I'd deliberately filtered them out, replacing them with a fake voice of my own creation, that said what I wanted to hear instead of what I needed to.

Hopefully working through these Earth lessons will help me to hear the stones again. More than that. I'm hoping that all of this work will bring back the true voices of my guides. They're currently speaking to me through the animals in my second world, but it's not the same as the open channel we once enjoyed.

Tylluan Penry
13 Jul 2015, 07:02
Regarding pebbles... have a look at what I found (and wrote about) in my blog:
http://thewolfenhowlepress.com/when-books-become-reality/

Jembru
13 Jul 2015, 13:18
Regarding pebbles... have a look at what I found (and wrote about) in my blog:
http://thewolfenhowlepress.com/when-books-become-reality/

The link doesn't seem to be working for me. :(

Tylluan Penry
13 Jul 2015, 13:41
I'll try it again... though it works from here for me... how odd.
Here we go:
http://thewolfenhowlepress.com/when-books-become-reality/

Jembru
14 Jul 2015, 10:21
I'll try it again... though it works from here for me... how odd.
Here we go:
http://thewolfenhowlepress.com/when-books-become-reality/

That one worked. Maybe it was just my PC acting strangely last night. Interesting story. I don't have anything so interesting in my meeting with Big Grey. The closest to an 'interesting' experience I've had with a stone would be the 2 almost identically shaped crystal shards, an amethyst and a citrine, that were both given to me by friends who found them randomly in car parks (about 3 months apart in different areas), and said they just 'felt' they were meant for me. These were both pagan friends though, and knew I was into crystals at the time, so it wasn't all that remarkable that they'd think of me.