Monday, 22 August 2016
PF London Conference - In Memory of Jean Williams
Pagan Federation London Conference was in honour of Jean Williams, an inspirational woman and high priestess who worked for the pagan community tirelessly throughout her life. She was a lovely person with a great sense of humour. I am glad to have met her on a few occasions, but wish I had known her better. She died last year shortly after launching her book The Play Goes On, and is very much missed.
At the conference, Morgana of PF International (pictured left) gave a talk about Jean Williams' life and legacy, including her work with Pagan Pathfinders and The Rainbow Bridge. The picture at the top shows a slide from Morgana’s talk with a photo of Jean and one of Morgana's memories of her.
Although the title of the conference was Magic and Mind, I made a comment to a friend on the day that it might have more aptly been named Death and Darkness. As well as the eulogy to Jean, there were talks by Lyn Balis on home funerals, Philip Shallcrass on death and Cat Treadwell on inspiration in darkness.
The programme wasn’t entirely about the darker side of life. I sadly missed the chance to go to workshops on animal spirit guides and the tarot, which were running alongside my own talk on candle magic. After that I went to a fascinating workshop on goddess oracles run by Caroline Wise. Other talks included Rebecca Beattie on 20th century literary pagans, Astrid Haszprunarova on spiritual alchemy, Amie Summer on conservation medicine and Jonathan Woodley on coming of age rites. There was also a chance to try belly dancing with Sascha Cooper and the day ended with music from Spriggan Mist.
There was a wonderful esoteric market, including stalls run by The Atlantis Bookshop, London Wildlife Trust, Domina Lunea Apothecary, Gemini Aspect pagan suppliers, Fox and Hare wand makers (pictured bottom right), Hendon Heathens, and Goddess in London (pictured above right). I bought a lovely candle, which I am going to blog more about later, and I won a book called The Avalonians in the tombola.
But for me, the best bit of the day was meeting up with old friends and making a few new ones.
Links and previous related posts