Tuesday, 11 August 2020

Magical Books: The Treadwell's Book of Plant Magic

That beautiful package wrapped in tissue paper and ribbon contains my copy of The Treadwell's Book of Plant Magic, which arrived in the post for me yesterday. 

It looked almost too pretty to break the seal and unwrap, but of course I did. While I've only glanced through the new book by Christina Oakley Harrington, I'm really looking forward to studying it and trying out the spells within its pages.

The description from Treadwell's says: "Treadwell's first ever guidebook has been two years in the making. The plants' magic powers are drawn from old remedy books, scrapbooks, and Victorian folklore collectors. Over 200 sources were consulted for the book, and every spell is footnoted discreetly at the back."

While I just bought the book on its own, which costs £11.99, you can also order two bundles of the book plus a range of dried herbs and spell candles

For £15, you get a signed copy of the book with sachets of three herbs, two spell candles and a Treadwell's badge. 

The picture to the left shows the most luxurious set. For £40 you can order a box containing the book with twelve jars of herbs and four large spell candles, plus instructions on how to use them, and for what magical purposes. The pack also includes a Treadwell's tote bag which you could use in the garden or when out foraging for herbs - although I have one I just take to do my grocery shopping. All the sets come with a spell card or two as well.

You can order the book and the boxed sets from Treadwell's online. The physical shop will be reopening at the end of August at 33 Store St, Fitzrovia, London WC1E 7BS.

Monday, 10 August 2020

Lammas Lament: It Is Okay When Things Go Wrong

Jane Mortimer took these pictures of Lammas crafting she did for a ritual. Jane said: "We were asked to take seasonal offerings for the altar. I made a wheat pentagram, but it turned out too big and I broke some of the ends off trying to ease it into my wheely trolley. Luckily I'd already got a photo of it (picture left). I ended up taking a simple bunch of dried botanicals from the garden (pictured below), the teasel representing a harvest for the birds - it's their Lammas too!"

I think both of the crafting projects look great, but the message from the first breakage is that it is okay when projects don't work out quite how we intended. We often only get better at a skill by making a few mistakes.

I'll qualify that: it is really annoying when we have a great idea for a crafting project, spend time, effort and often money making the thing, but it ends up breaking or simply not being quite as good as we hoped. However, the next time we try, we'll be better at it.

I know I can sometimes be put off attempting things from fear of failure. I even do that with writing projects, despite being a published author already. I can prevaricate with a blank computer screen and no words typed, even though I know the sooner I start, the sooner I'll finish.

The first draft of every book I've written was a bit rubbish. However, it is often less of a waste of time to dash out the first attempt quickly, then improve on that, than to delay starting until I feel more confident. As a friend who is an experienced writer reminded me recently, there's often a lot more perspiration than inspiration behind every best-selling book. It is the same with every artistic and creative project.

However, I think both Jane's pentagram and Lammas dried botanicals look lovely in the photos, and I'm delighted to see them and put them on my blog.

Friday, 7 August 2020

Tales from the Witch Room: A Tarot Deck Shelfie

Here's a photo I took of the shelves in my witch room that contain most of my tarot cards and books. I do have a few more in other places too, and several more than I did back in 2018, when I did another Tales from the Witch Room post and those shelves were surrounded by pointy hats. You can see that picture here.

This year, I've been doing tarot and oracle card readings using a variety of decks, including the Vertigo Tarot, the Haindl Tarot and the Lord of the Rings Oracle. Which one would you like me to use next?

Previous related posts

Thursday, 6 August 2020

Review: Colm Holland's The Secret of the Alchemist

Here is a review by Jane Mortimer of Colm Holland's new book, The Secret of the Alchemist:

A lot of people will be familiar with Paulo Coelho's classic 'The Alchemist' - a widely read and profoundly influential book.  I would consider Colm Holland's The Secret of the Alchemist to be the perfect companion volume, and really it's essential to read Paulo's book first. It's not a big read - took me two days.  

Colm's book was released last week and is only slightly thicker than Paulo's, so it's a speedy read, albeit a very deep one, though it doesn't come across as quite the adventure of Paulo's book. It's at a more temporal level, because it's an autobiography as well as an objective critique of a book that's supposed to be fiction, though it feels very real, and almost Biblical.  

Looking back over the years, I'm starting to see how the cogs and wheels of alchemy connect with the cogs and wheels of our lives, and as for omens, well, that's a whole new (to some of us anyway) resource waiting to unfold.  I can also see the synchronicity involved in The Alchemist and Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone sharing the echelons of the world's most widely translated and most read books, while both having the philosopher's stone at their heart. They ooze triumph over adversity, which is what happens when we let ourselves be loved by the Soul of the world and trust in our destiny.  

I would thoroughly recommend all of these books, and am so glad their authors have laid all this magic before us.

Wednesday, 5 August 2020

Online and London Pagan Events in the Next Week

Here is a list of online events and in-person activities in or near London and for pagans, witches and those with similar interests. I generally list events in the UK, but some of the activities are outside that time zone, so check what time it will start in your location. If you know an online ritual, talk, meeting or workshop you want included, please email me at badwitch1234@gmail.com

Wednesday 5 August; Online Meditation hosted by Light in London, which offers mostly free spiritual events. Time: 1pm. Free. https://www.meetup.com/Light-in-London/

Wednesday 5 August; Introduction to Shamanic Drumming. Online workshop with Heron Drums. Time: 2pm. Tickets: £29. Details: https://www.herondrums.co.uk/workshops

Wednesday 5 August; Moon Books Live Talk and Discussion with Steve Andrews, author of Herbs of the Northern Shaman, hosted by Moon Books. Time: 7pm. https://www.facebook.com/events/618103335801623/

Wednesday 5 August; Soul Circle: Online Colour Meditation and Energy Healing, hosted by Emily Rose Home Design. Time: 7.30pm. Tickets: £6.57. https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/soul-circle-colour-meditation-energy-healing-tickets-114875337226?

Wednesday 5 August; Full Moon Sound Journey. Digital event organised by She's Lost Control. Pay what you can sessions (£5-£15). Time: 8.30pm. https://www.sheslostcontrol.co.uk/digital

Thursday 6 August; Herbal Medicine With Peter Jackson Main, hosted by Star Events Online, CNM - College of Naturopathic Medicine and Association of Master Herbalists. Time: 2.30pm. Tickets: Free/£11.36. https://www.eventbrite.com/e/herbal-medicine-with-peter-jackson-main-tickets-115750945193

Thursday 6 August; Dr Ann Winsper on Timeslips. ASSAP webinar. Time: 7pm. Free event. Tickets limited to 100 and available first to ASSAP members, but can be booked by non-ASSAP members from Thursday morning. Email secretary@assap.ac.uk to reserve a place.

Thursday 6 August; Breathwork for Creativity. Digital event organised by She's Lost Control. Tickets: £5-£20. Time: 7pm. https://www.sheslostcontrol.co.uk/digital

Thursday 6 August; Psychedelic Magic. Online workshop with Julian Vayne via Treadwell's. Time: 7pm start. Tickets: £20. https://www.treadwells-london.com/events

Friday 7 August; Shakti Yoga. Online event with Dancing the Goddess. Time: 7am. Tickets: £7. https://www.meetup.com/Dancing-the-Goddess/

Friday 7 August; Feel Good Friday - Mastering Productivity. Digital event organised by She's Lost Control. Pay what you can sessions (£5-£15). Time: 8am. https://www.sheslostcontrol.co.uk/digital

Friday 7 August (tbc - usually every Friday); Friday Live Chat hosted by Rachel Patterson, author of the Kitchen Witch series of books. Time: 9am. Free event. https://www.facebook.com/RachelPattersonbooks/

Friday 7 August; Traditions. Online talk via Children of Circe, is a private pagan group run by Richard Levy and sponsored by the Doreen Valiente Foundation. You have to join the group to watch the videos: Time: 8pm. Free event.  https://www.facebook.com/groups/725752541262809/

Saturday 8 August; Outdoor Woodland Drumming Circle with Shamanic Walks of Consciousness. Meet at Oxleas Wood Car Park, London SE18 3JA. Time: 10am. Tickets: £15. https://www.meetup.com/Shamanic-Walks-of-Consciousness/

Saturday 8 August; Shamanic Journey to the Sirius Star System at Lionsgate 2020 with The Divine Awakening Sacred Circle London. Online event. Time: 10.30am. Tickets: £11.11. https://www.meetup.com/The-Divine-Awakening-Sacred-Circle-London/

Saturday 8 August; Lions Gate Portal Breath Ceremony via Zoom with Lisa Li Organised by Aho Community. Time: 2.30pm-4.30pm. Tickets: £20. https://www.aho.community/

Saturday 8 August; Witchfest Online: The Cone of Power, Energy and Working in Circle. Talk by  Moira Hodgkinson, hosted by Wicca and Witchcraft Magazine. Time: 4pm. Free. https://www.facebook.com/events/2335828186727077/

Saturday 8 August; Story Circle: The Supernatural Sea, with Vanessa of London Dreamtime. Time: 7pm. Free, but donations for Justice for Grenfell are encouraged. Details: https://www.londondreamtime.com/calendar/

Sunday 9 August; Druidic First Fruits of the Harvest Celebration on Primrose Hill with the Loose Association of Druids. Gather in the Hawthorne Grove at Primrose Hill, London, NW1 8YH, by 12.45pm to prepare the site ready for a prompt 1pm start. Nearest tube: Chalk Farm. Bring a small contribution of food and drink to share. All are welcome.

Sunday 9 August; Reflect and Appreciate – Spiritual Stepping Stones. Webinar with Lorna Byrne organised by Mind Body Spirit Ltd. Time: 4pm. Tickets: £32.04. https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/o/mind-body-spirit-ltd-6186126875

Sunday 9 August; Greek Magical Papyri and exploring Aleister Crowley’s Bornless Rite. Online talk presented by Tom McArthur, organised through the Centre For Pagan Studies. Time: 4pm. Details: http://centre-for-pagan-studies.com/kitchen-table-talks/an-introduction-to-the-greek-magical-papyri/?

Sunday 9 August; Carrie Kirkpatrick (Working with Goddesses) and Lyn Thurman (Energetic and Magickal Implications of a Pandemic). Part of the Magickal Women Conference Summer Salons. An online series of short, engaging talks with discussion via Zoom. Time: 7pm. Tickets for individual salons: £8.50. https://ti.to/magickal-women-conference/summer-salons?

Sunday 9 August; The Witches Of Yorkshire! Online talk hosted by Shadows of York Ghost Walk. Time: 8.30pm . Free to view but donations via PayPal welcome. https://www.facebook.com/events/320849942419862/

Monday 10 August;  Mindful Still Life Monday Sessions with London Drawing, via Zoom. Two sessions: 12.30pm and 6pm. Free, but donations welcome. http://londondrawing.com/events/mindful-still-life-monday-sessions/

Monday 10 August; Witchcraft with Mercury. Online workshop with Rebecca Beattie, author of Nature Mystics, via Treadwell's Online. Via Zoom. Time: 7pm start. Tickets: £20. https://www.treadwells-london.com/events

Tuesday 11 August; Suit of Wands Tarot Masterclass. Digital event organised by She's Lost Control. Tickets £20-£30). Time: 7pm. https://www.sheslostcontrol.co.uk/digital

Tuesday 11 August; First of 2-part online workshop on Sigil Magic for Results, with Mark Vincent. Part 2 is on 18 Aug. Organised with Treadwell's. Time: 7pm start. Tickets: £40 for the two sessions. https://www.treadwells-london.com/events

Tuesday 11 August; Heron Drums Online Shamanic Drum Circle via Facebook or Zoom. Time: 7pm: Details: https://www.facebook.com/herondrumsuk/

Tuesday 11 August; How Odin lost his eye and gained the Runes. Storytelling with Jason Buck. Time: 8pm. Tickets: £2-£6.50. https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/how-odin-lost-his-eye-and-gained-the-runes-tickets-115012549632?

Wednesday 12 August; Essential Oils for the Face. Online workshop with Hackney Herbal. Time: 6pm. Tickets: £20. http://www.hackneyherbal.com/workshops/

Wednesday 12 August; Siberian Wisdom for the Healing Family Lineage with AAYLA, Workshop with a Siberian shaman. Venue: Aho Studio, 13 Prince Edward Rd, London, E9 5LX. Time: 6.30pm. Tickets: £35. www.aho.community

Wednesday 12 August; Dan Snow live in conversation with Suzannah Lipscomb to discuss her new book A History of Magic, Witchcraft and The Occult. Online. Time: 4pm. Free event, but you must sign up before 2pm to get a place. https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeUu7CpqnLi5Nbr1U5oCphG76iM8Z5UThinJCSgFyh_M9dGdw/viewform

Wednesday 12 August; Demonstration of Spirit Portraits. Online demonstration with June-Elleni Laine through the College of Psychic Studies. Time: 7pm. Tickets: Members: £14, Non-members: £18. https://www.collegeofpsychicstudies.co.uk/

Wednesday 12 August; Moon Books Live Talk and Discussion with Luke Eastwood, author of The Druid's Primer, hosted by Moon Books. Time: 7pm. https://www.facebook.com/events/744658119692696/

Thursday 13 August; Stories From Lore: Shapeshifting Hares, hosted by DD Storyteller. Time: 7pm. Tickets: £4.50. https://www.crowdcast.io/e/stories-from-lore/register

Thursday 13 August; An Introduction To The Pagan Calendar. Online talk at South East London Folklore Society. Time: 8pm. Price: pay what you can - suggested donation £5. Details: https://www.facebook.com/groups/2438110887/

Thursday 13 August; Breathwork for Creativity. Digital event organised by She's Lost Control. Tickets: £5-£20. Time: 7pm. https://www.sheslostcontrol.co.uk/digital

Thursday 13 August/Friday 14 August; Mystic Chat ep 15: Author Cyndi Brannen. Online event. 7pm on Thursday CDT, which is 1am Friday UK time. https://www.facebook.com/events/3129190090528854/

Friday 14 August; Teach Yourself Magic. Online talk via Children of Circe, is a private pagan group run by Richard Levy and sponsored by the Doreen Valiente Foundation. You have to join the group to watch the videos: Time: 8pm. Free event.  https://www.facebook.com/groups/725752541262809/

Sunday 16 August; Caroline Wise (Working with Goddesses) and Ruth Bayer (Goddesses and Wild Women of the Alps). Part of the Magickal Women Conference Summer Salons. An online series of short, engaging talks with discussion via Zoom. Time: 7pm. Tickets for individual salons: £8.50. https://ti.to/magickal-women-conference/summer-salons?

Free Practical Magic 101 tutorials: How to do Candle Magic, How to Burn Loose Incense, How to use a Sage Smudge, How to use a Pendulum at https://www.treadwells-london.com/intro plus free podcasts: https://www.treadwells-london.com/treadwell-s-podcast  For  £12.99 a month you can also subscribe to gain access to uploaded illustrated lectures and seminars from Treadwell's renowned catalogue of events: https://www.treadwells-london.com/lectures

Disclaimer: Please note that I am not responsible for the content of any of these events. Where a practitioner is offering information about magical protection, this is *not* medical advice.