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Cauldron and Candle
Issue #14 -- August 2001

A Publication of The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum
website: http://www.ecauldron.com/
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Return to Cauldron and Candle Archive

C A U L D R O N   A N D   C A N D L E  #14 -- August 2001

           A Publication of The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum
                website: http://www.ecauldron.com/
     mailing list/board: http://www.ecauldron.com/fregmb.php
     delphi forum: http://forums.delphiforums.com/CUSTOM7999/start
             newsletter: http://www.ecauldron.com/cnc/

           With a little help from The Witches' Thicket
               website: http://www.cros.net/soraya/
       delphi forum: http://forums.delphiforums.com/thicket/start

In this Issue:

[01] Editorial: Pseudo history, Fluff Bunnies and Wicca
[02] Poem: In The Dark
[03] Lammas: The First Harvest
[05] Review: Are We Living In The End Times
[06] Review: Ariande's Thread
[07] Review: The Holy Book of Women's Mysteries
[08] Review: Origins of Modern Witchcraft
[09] Magick: Elemental Cauldrons
[10] Magick: Money Drawing Spell
[11] Summertime Incense, Potpourri and Philtres
[12] Humor: You Know Your Coven's Getting Older
[13] New Articles on The Cauldron's Site
[14] New Web Polls
[15] Support The Cauldron When You Buy at Amazon.com
[16] Cauldron and Thicket Chats
[17] Newsletter and Forum Info
              (Including How To Subscribe/Unsubscribe)

  +++ Submission Deadline for next issue:  August 20, 2001 +++
   Guidelines: http://www.ecauldron.com/cnc/submissions.php

========= by Tony M.

  [The following is long and a bit rambling. It is just some
  thoughts I have had going around in my head, and thought I
  would put down for personal clarity. These are just my
  opinions. I don't wish to imply that I have a unique and
  correct insight that others miss. This is simply the way I
  have seen things. I thought I would post this and give
  others the opportunity to comment one way or the other.

  It is not really meant as a rant against fluff bunnies.
  Rather some observations of how and why things have gone the
  way they have in Wicca, and how I feel it effects me as an

I have been noticing a few things about Wicca and the changes it
has been going through over the past decade or so. I first began
to get involved with Wicca in 1982. I felt it would round out my
spiritual practices, and it did.

I have to admit that one of the things that appealed to me about
it were the mystery and the fact that it directly addressed some
of the most primal aspects of human existence; life, death and

At that time the more vocal debates about the origin of Wicca
were just getting into swing. There had always been controversy I
suppose, but up until then it was mostly debate within or between
occult groups, and an occasional article in one of the few Pagan

So, for the most part, at that time people were still being
taught the idea that Wicca was an ancient tradition that went
back practically to Paleolithic times. That the form may have
changed, but what we were doing was in direct decent of what our
primitive (yet spiritually advanced it seems) ancestors did. I
know that for me and the circle of individuals I associated with,
this so called ancient link and sense of antiquity given to what
we were doing lent a sense of awe when we entered a circle. It
produced a certain mindset that opened us to the wondrous.
Gardner may have reworked some stuff and supplemented it, but as
far as we were concerned he was a Witch who's practices could be
traced to the farthest reaches of human memory. He was in touch
with something that modern man, living in modern society, had
been mostly cut off from. We few who were following this path
were trying to reconnect to something ancient, enlightening and
yes, powerful.

There were some good books out. Even those of us lucky enough to
find a coven supplemented our practice with stuff from these
books. But these books were written by people like us, who felt
we were dealing with something ancient and mysterious. They were
not best sellers, and most bookstores did not carry them.
Searching these books out lent a certain sense of adventure to
the whole learning process.

Gardner had talked about life and death in plain terms. Death is
still a subject that we avoid in most western societies, but here
was a guy who explained that birth, death, and sex were all a
part of the great cycle we, as animals on the Earth, were a part
of. It was a philosophy that included both the base and the
sublime. It dealt with the body and its functions, sweat, blood
and the dirt under our feet. But also the spirit, the search for
transcendence, the union with the higher forces of the universe.

We thought about things we otherwise would not have. We
celebrated dirt, sex and death. There was joy in it, but also
something dark. Not in an evil way, but in the sense that we were
putting our minds to things our society labels as impolite
conversation, morbid topics, and things better left unexamined.

As time progressed things changed. At first it seemed like a very
good change to me. More books. Books actually geared to
solitaires. Books suggesting self initiation is ok. And
eventually books that dealt with the idea that the history we
were being told about our links to the distant past, the numbers
killed in the "Burning Times", the stories of who were witches
secretly in the past and the things they had done, were not
accurate. That some were outright lies. That Gardner made it all

I did not care, and neither did most of those I knew. So Gardner
made it up? He would not be the first to create a false history
to give validation to his creation. It did not change the fact
that what he created answered a spiritual need for some of us. So
what if some of the awe at the thought of the antiquity was gone?
So what if some of the mystery was lost when numerous variations
of our secret ceremonies were being published in books for anyone
to read?

At first it seemed that those who were learning on their own from
just books and experimentation were doing well. They were just as
dedicated, and often just as educated. They also tended to have a
streak of creativity that was breathing new life into Wicca. They
were making it more accessible and understandable. This was, to
me, a good thing. If Wicca could help people searching for
something missing in their spiritual lives then I was all for it.
We were still part of something different. Something that may
becoming available to more people. But due to its frank nature,
and dealing with certain aspects of life that most preferred not
incorporate in to their spiritual thinking, it was not going to
be the path for very many despite this deluge of information
being easily accessible.

But as the history was refuted and the secrecy was stripped away
things started to change. There were those who felt that since
Gardner made it up it was fair game to change the things they did
not like. Fine to certain extent. I am all for people modifying
to fit their needs, to a point.

But in my opinion some of those things that have been changed are
some of the things that make Wicca what it is. The first
casualties were the Death and Sex. Birth was ok, and you can't
get away from the death completely, but it was drastically
reduced in importance and brushed under the rug.

Magic, in terms of spell work, started to take precedence over
religion. I never understood this since you don't need the
religion to do the spell work. But it seems many would be Witches
and Magicians wanted to seize on the concept of "White
Witchcraft" in a way that seemed less threatening to others or

The problem is that Gardner's Wicca was not not threatening
(please forgive the double negative). It was, in fact, rather
radical and dangerous in its own way. Not inherently dangerous to
the individual practicing it, but dangerous in a societal sense
because it provided a worldview that was significantly different
from that of Western society as a whole. At least that is how it
seemed to me in my younger years. The changes being made were in
order to make it more appealing as a possible spiritual path to a
wider bunch of people, and more acceptable to society at large.

The books coming out were "lighter". Less Sex and Death. Not only
were certain practices that were not appealing to a large number
of people called unnecessary, old fashioned or optional: they
were not mentioned at all.

I was recently reading a review of some Wicca books on Amazon and
found people criticizing Raymond Buckland's early books. Not
criticizing his writing style or overly authoritarian tone. They
were criticizing his use of bondage and scourging during
initiation rites. His discussion of sexuality as sacred. His
explanation of the Great Rite in fact, not symbolism. There were
those calling him sick and perverted.

I was floored at this. All these things are part of the Wicca
Gerald Gardner created. They have been a part since long before I
was born. And here are people who have no clue of that. They call
themselves Wiccan, but look upon some of the most basic concepts
of Wicca as sick and perverted.

With the discarding of the Pseudo history Gardner created for
Wicca there seems to have been a loss of understanding of why he
did things the way he did. I have come to realize that the pseudo
history contained a lot of the myth and symbolism that defined
the message of Wicca.

Joseph Campbell once said that the problem with Christianity is
that it takes it's myths too literal. In doing so the symbolic
message contained in those myths is lost to many. In the case of
Wicca we have discarded the myth altogether, and with it the core
of what it is all about.

I try not to be judgmental, but I have a hard time seeing these
"fluff bunnies" as Wiccan. Not because I am an elitist who thinks
that every one who does not agree with my version of Wicca is a
heretic. But these are people who don't even have a clue they are
disagreeing with the original teachings of Wicca. Wicca is a
religion of Death, Birth and Sex, yet these people are trying to
remove these very things, or at least trying to change the
concepts to the point that Gardner himself would not recognize.

The books are teaching something very different than what I was
taught. They are more about spells with a touch of religion
thrown in. They are about casting circles and consecrating the
pretty new wand you bought at the local occult shop. The dirt and
blood and sweat are gone. The extremes of life, the pain and joy,
celebrated and cherished in Wicca have been converted to more
acceptable and palatable middle of the road point of view.

The few concepts that have survived because they were acceptable
enough not to be changed or removed have been adhered to with
such ferocity that their true meaning and purpose have been lost
in rabid fundamentalism. Like most fundamentalists these Wiccans
hold certain things about their religion as absolutes while
brushing the aspects they are not comfortable with under the rug.
The old "pay no attention to the man behind the curtain"

The mystery religion of Wicca is now Pop Culture. Wicca (in it's
lightened form) is hip. It is on television. Or at least the term
Wicca is. Those who are supposed to be Wiccan on these shows bear
even less resemblance to Gardner's concepts than the new crop of
fluff Wiccans. We have become trendy and trite. The lightening up
of Wicca has not really brought us in to the mainstream of
religion in the U.S. We are just a fad to some, a joke to others,
and just as evil to those who look for evil under every stone.

I am starting to feel that Wicca, as I have always thought of it,
is dead. There is a new Wicca in town and it bears little
resemblance. I am reluctant to use the term anymore for myself. I
find that if I have to describe myself in terms of religion I
fall on my roots and simply say Buddhist. At least that typically
gets some respect. Or just call myself a general Pagan and leave
it at that.

I am not a strict traditionalist. I think change can be a good
thing. But change something too much and it is no longer the same
thing. It is fine for folks who don't feel comfortable skyclad to
wear robes, but don't turn around and call the skyclad folks
perverted. It is fine to forgo scourging in initiations, but
don't assume that it was there just for kicks. Try to understand
the reason it was there and replace it with something that
achieves the same effect in a way more acceptable to you. Don't
throw out the baby with the bath water.

This new, new religion of Wicca is not for me. The old, new
religion of Wicca was more my cup of tea, but there is no place
for it anymore it seems. What is a middle of the road
Pagan/Buddhist to do? I don't fit in with the strict British
Traditionalists who accept every word of Gardner as holy writ,
and I don't want to fit in with the fluff bunnies. I don't want
to abandon this part of my spiritual life. My core is Buddhist,
but my outlook is often very Pagan. Change can be grand, but
change can also suck. It all depends on what way the wind is
blowing I guess.


        The Cauldron and Candle now has its own web site
        where we store our back issues for easy reading.


========= IN THE DARK
========= A Poem by Elspeth Sapphire

I am the voice in the night....
                                     no one listens.
 Bringing words of warning....
                                     no one hears.

There is truth to my words.....
                                     no one listens.
 Truth to bring inner peace....
                                     no one hears.

Friends bide me to silence....
                                     no one listens.
 Others just turn away.....
                                     no one hears.

Why continue on my Path....
                                     no one listens.
 Why be a sound in the dark....
                                     no one hears.

My wise Lady only laughs....
                                     no one listens.
 It's as it always was....
                                     no one hears.

Predestined from time past....
                                     no one listens.
 The truthsayer in the dark....
                                     no one hears.

                     SEND A PAGAN POSTCARD

       You can send a Pagan Postcard from the menu of any
       of our web pages at http://www.ecauldron.com/. If
       you haven't tried our postcard site, give it a
       try. It has quite a few nice features.

========= by Mike Nichols

  Once upon a Lammas Night
  When corn rigs are bonny,
  Beneath the Moon's unclouded light,
  I held awhile to Annie...

Although in the heat of a Mid-western summer it might be
difficult to discern, the festival of Lammas (Aug 1st) marks the
end of summer and the beginning of fall.  The days now grow
visibly shorter and by the time we've reached autumn's end (Oct
31st), we will have run the gamut of temperature from the heat of
August to the cold and (sometimes) snow of November.  And in the
midst of it, a perfect Mid-western autumn.

The history of Lammas is as convoluted as all the rest of the old
folk holidays.  It is of course a cross-quarter day, one of the
four High Holidays or Greater Sabbats of Witchcraft, occurring
1/4 of a year after Beltane.  It's true astrological point is 15
degrees Leo, which occurs at 1:18 am CDT, Aug 6th this year
(1988), but tradition has set August 1st as the day Lammas is
typically celebrated.  The celebration proper would begin on
sundown of the previous evening, our July 31st, since the Celts
reckon their days from sundown to sundown.

However, British Witches often refer to the astrological date of
Aug 6th as Old Lammas, and folklorists call it Lammas O.S. ('Old
Style').  This date has long been considered a 'power point' of
the Zodiac, and is symbolized by the Lion, one of the
'tetramorph' figures found on the Tarot cards, the World and the
Wheel of Fortune (the other three figures being the Bull, the
Eagle, and the Spirit). Astrologers know these four figures as
the symbols of the four 'fixed' signs of the Zodiac, and these
naturally align with the four Great Sabbats of Witchcraft.
Christians have adopted the same iconography to represent the
four gospel-writers.

'Lammas' was the medieval Christian name for the holiday and it
means 'loaf-mass', for this was the day on which loaves of bread
were baked from the first grain harvest and laid on the church
altars as offerings.  It was a day representative of 'first
fruits' and early harvest.

In Irish Gaelic, the feast was referred to as 'Lugnasadh', a
feast to commemorate the funeral games of the Irish sun-god Lugh.
However, there is some confusion on this point. Although at first
glance, it may seem that we are celebrating the death of the
Lugh, the god of light does not really die (mythically) until the
autumnal equinox. And indeed, if we read the Irish myths closer,
we discover that it is not Lugh's death that is being celebrated,
but the funeral games which Lugh hosted to commemorate the death
of his foster- mother, Taillte. That is why the Lugnasadh
celebrations in Ireland are often called the 'Tailltean Games'.

  The time went by with careless heed
  Between the late and early,
  With small persuasion she agreed
  To see me through the barley...

One common feature of the Games were the 'Tailltean marriages', a
rather informal marriage that lasted for only 'a year and a day'
or until next Lammas.  At that time, the couple could decide to
continue the arrangement if it pleased them, or to stand back to
back and walk away from one another, thus bringing the Tailltean
marriage to a formal close.  Such trial marriages (obviously
related to the Wiccan 'Handfasting') were quite common even into
the 1500's, although it was something one 'didn't bother the
parish priest about'.  Indeed, such ceremonies were usually
solemnized by a poet, bard, or shanachie (or, it may be guessed,
by a priest or priestess of the Old Religion).

Lammastide was also the traditional time of year for craft
festivals.  The medieval guilds would create elaborate displays
of their wares, decorating their shops and themselves in bright
colors and ribbons, marching in parades, and performing strange,
ceremonial plays and dances for the entranced onlookers.  The
atmosphere must have been quite similar to our modern-day
Renaissance Festivals, such as the one celebrated in near-by
Bonner Springs, Kansas, each fall.

A ceremonial highlight of such festivals was the 'Catherine
wheel'.  Although the Roman Church moved St. Catherine's feast
day all around the calender with bewildering frequency, it's most
popular date was Lammas.  (They also kept trying to expel this
much-loved saint from the ranks of the blessed because she was
mythical rather than historical, and because her worship gave
rise to the heretical sect known as the Cathari.)  At any rate, a
large wagon wheel was taken to the top of a near-by hill, covered
with tar, set aflame, and ceremoniously rolled down the hill.
Some mythologists see in this ritual the remnants of a Pagan rite
symbolizing the end of summer, the flaming disk representing the
sun-god in his decline.  And just as the sun king has now reached
the autumn of his years, his rival or dark self has just reached

Many commentators have bewailed the fact that traditional
Gardnerian and Alexandrian Books of Shadows say very little about
the holiday of Lammas, stating only that poles should be ridden
and a circle dance performed.  This seems strange, for Lammas is
a holiday of rich mythic and cultural associations, providing
endless resources for liturgical celebration.

  Corn rigs and barley rigs,
  Corn rigs are bonny!
  I'll not forget that happy night
  Among the rigs with Annie!

[Verse quotations by Robert Burns, as handed down through several
Books of Shadows.]

(This file contains eight seasonal articles by Mike Nichols. They
may be freely distributed provided that the following conditions
are met: (1) No fee is charged for their use and distribution and
no commercial use is made of them; (2) These files are not
changed or edited in any way without the author's permission; (3)
This notice is not removed. An article may be distributed as a
separate file, provided that this notice is repeated at the
beginning of each such file. These articles are periodically
updated by the author; this version is current as of 9/28/88.)


       Learn to tell the wheat from the chaff when you
       view a web site or read a book.


========= Reviewed by Seraphina

Are We Living in the End Times?
Author: Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins
Trade Paperback, 400 pages
Publisher: Tyndale House
Publication date: December 2000
ISBN: 0842336443
US Retail Price: $14.99
Amazon Link:

The title alone tells what the book is about. This book is a
Fundamentalist Christian view of the End Times as prophesied in
the Bible. I found this book to be both fascinating and
infuriating. At several points in this book I wanted to scream my
head off, yet I was bewildered. I have yet to figure out how some
Christians can believe this is going to happen. It seems so

The first point which made me scratch my head was how the authors
claim that to name an exact date is against the Word of God. If
one should name a date, then they are termed false prophets. The
authors then disclose how they believe the generation who saw
Israel become a nation will be the last generation to pass. The
rapture will soon come about after that. It may not be a specific
time but they are cutting it close to being false prophets by
their own definition.

The second point is how they think tolerance of other religions
is the next step to being one religion. At one point they stress
one shouldn't be tolerant of other religions because they're not
the "one true way" to God. The authors also say those who worship
Gaia will soon become Mary worshipers and, thus, the "one world
religion" will come together. It seems they never did their
homework when it comes to Pagans.

The third point made me laugh out loud. The authors said the
technology of today is a stepping stone to the total control of
everything by the AntiChrist. We now have the ability to live in
a cashless society by the use of credit and debit cards. We also
use microchips to tag animals which the authors think will be the
mark of the Beast.

The fourth and final point is what nasty things will happen while
saying God loves you with all of his being and He wishes you to
be with him. God loves you but He'll send demon locusts to grab
your attention. He wants you to believe in Him, and to make you
believe He'll send 200 million demon horsemen to make you see
He's loving and just. Half of the world population at this point
will die just so He can prove to you how much He cares for you.
Those who don't believe will be tortured, killed then thrown in
the Lake of Fire with Satan, the AntiChrist and the False

If this book was suppose to make the reader think about life,
love and religion then they failed miserably. I found myself
disgusted with their narrowmindedness and their highhandedness.
Of course, I am one of the scoffers they talk about. Reading this
book made me glad I am a scoffer.

           This review is available on our web site at

========= Reviewed by Seraphina

Ariadne's Thread: A Workbook of Goddess Magic
Author: Shekhinah Mountainwater
Trade Paperback, 382 pages
Publisher: Crossing Press
Publication date: September 1991
ISBN: 0895944758
US Retail Price: $16.95
Amazon Link:

Ariande's Thread is a workbook of Goddess Magick and Worship.
This book has three sections called Gathering, Spinning and
Weaving. The first section deals with the preparation of the
Goddess path. The second section deals with holidays and rituals.
The third deals with divination and magick. This book is somewhat
difficult to review. I liked and disliked it. It is very hard to
decide how this book should be taken.

The reasons I like it are numerous. Mountainwater is a great
writer. Her poetry and rituals are the most beautiful I've read.
Another great thing about this book are the exercises she gives
at the end of each chapter. They are thought provoking and very
useful, and her writing keeps you interested. I was not bored
with this book.

The reasons I disliked it are numerous as well. Her history is
horrible. She believes the 9 million dead of The Burning Times is
true. She believes women can become immaculately conceived by
exposing her genitals to the full moon. She's very anti-male, and
states that patriarchy is the reason for society's problems.
There are other fallacies which made me rethink my position on
this book.

If one is looking for ideas for rituals, a book full of exercises
and questions to think about then this is the book for you.
However, critical thinking is definitely a must here. She has very
outlandish theories and thoughts. Overlooking the faults of the
book isn't hard when you have wonderful rituals and poetry
contained within it.

           This review is available on our web site at

========= Reviewed by Seraphina

The Holy Book of Women's Mysteries
Author: Zsuzsanna Budapest
Trade Paperback, 308 pages
Publisher: Wingbow Press
Publication date: September 1989
ISBN: 0914728679
US Retail Price: $17.95
Amazon Link:

I liked this book. Budapest has a way with the written word. This
book kept me interested until the very last page. The rituals
were beautifully written. Some of the spells are not what you
would expect from a Pagan book. The book contains love spells
which some people would call unethical. This book also contains
spells on how to hex people or bring them to justice. When
reading the rituals it is almost as if you're there with her and
the Goddess she invokes. Her stance is a feminist one and she
makes sure you know it. One of the things I liked is how she
didn't exclude men in the rituals. She doesn't hate them nor is
she against them. This was refreshing compared to some books I've

What I didn't like about this book is her history and some of her
politics. She subscribes to the theory of nine million people
dead during The Burning Times. Budapest says her mother was the
result of a immaculate conception, and her opinions on meat and
women come close to being a conspiracy theory.

All in all, this was a good book to read. Critical thinking is a
must in some areas, but if one can deal with Budapest's politics,
one will find beautiful rituals and some very good ideas.

           This review is available on our web site at

========= Reviewed by Daven

Origins of Modern Witchcraft: The Evolution of a World Religion
Author: Ann Moura
Hardback, 336 pages
Publisher: Llewellyn
Publication date: October 2000
ISBN: 1567186483
US Retail Price: $14.95
Amazon Link:

I had hoped when I started this book that it would explain many
things that have long puzzled me.  I thought "here is a person
who has a Bachelor's degree along with a Master's degree in
History.  Finally, we can get to the heart of the matter and stop
a lot of pointless debate."

How wrong I was.

The first three chapters are interesting.  There is little
evidence to back what she claims up, however.  There are no
footnotes in this book to reference claims she makes, or even to
guide the reader to finding the answers for themselves.  While
these are not necessary in most cases, they are critical to
having a work taken seriously by the scholastic community.

Of some distraction (and unique to this work) there are rituals
interspersed with the text, to encourage you to do the rituals
with an open mind.  Well, I had an open mind and I closed it
quickly.  The rituals, while nice and of use in another setting,
are useless in this book.  They only serve to distract you from
the  claims made by the author.

Of concern, this tome has many thoughts and "facts" that can't be
proven by any of the references or points or theories that she
cites.  For instance, it is Ms. Moura's assertion that the
current plethora of religions came from the Sind, in the area now
known as the Mid-East or India, and the worship of Shiva and
Shakti.  She cites a gradual progression of beliefs and a
metamorphosis of the politics and religion as being directly the
"fault" of the Aryan beliefs as the Sind area grew and traded.

In brief, the Aryans had a religion based on a king class of
people, with the Gods supporting their rule, while the Indus had
a religion of all being equal before the Gods.

She does a good job of writing this all down.  It is somewhat
confusing the way she presents her arguments.  Instead of putting
all the information and happenings into a timeline, and walking
the reader through it all, she breaks it into groupings and takes
the reader from the beginning to now, then back to the beginning
again, over and over.

All of this I could forgive, but then she starts into claiming
that the current Wiccan religion is exactly how the ancients
(meaning the Celts and Irish) of the time of the Tuatha de Danna
and just after, worshiped.  This spans the time of about 200 C.E.
to approximately 500 C.E.  She further cites all the troubles in
the world being directly attributable to the Roman Empire and the
religion of that Empire and their Aryan philosophies.  She even
claims that the current hierarchy in the Vatican is a leftover of
the pre-Roman political structure.  One passage in particular has
many reviewers of this book up in arms, where she calls the Pope
the current incarnation of the Roman Emperor.

Claims of passing knowledge from parent to child during the
"Burning Times" and keeping it pure abound in some sections of
this book.  This is criminally negligent in my opinion.  There is
no way, to cite Isaac Bonewits, that an uneducated peasantry
could keep the teachings pure for better than 500 years without
writing it down.

But to state that modern Wicca is the reincarnation of
Shiva/Shakti worship is ludicrous.  To give you the scale she is
taking in, she cites that the height of this Shiva/Shakti worship
was approximately 14,000 B.C.E.

Oh, to give her credit, she may honestly believe these things. It
IS possible that she is correct in her thoughts and assertions,
but it is highly unlikely.  Her open hostility against the
Christian churches, as well as anything considered "Aryan",
meaning any non-Wiccan/Green Witchcraft, is distressing and it
slants the entire book.  Readers are advised to take this book
with an entire salt-pan, rather than just a grain.

She does state that the Burning Times and the Witch Hysteria of
the Middle Ages were for political gain, rather than for
persecution of Witches.  She does state that the Celts invaded
Ireland in three waves, mostly from Iberia (Spain).  She does
give an accurate portrayal of the struggles on Ireland of the
Celts, first with the Fir Bolg, then the Tuatha de Danna, then
the Irish invaders, and she does give a somewhat accurate history
of Christianity.

However, statements like "yes, they did elect a woman and a
horse" in regards to the Papacy elections and the Catholic Church
leave me wondering if she bothered to do ANY research of the
Christian Churches at all. Because according to every scholar I
consulted, that is a bunch of hogwash and they would be very
interested in seeing her evidences.

It is my opinion that Ms. Moura does achieve a triumph in this
book.  Never, since the writing of "The White Goddess" have so
many straws been clutched at, so many half baked theories and
coincidences been strung together into one book and presented as

I'm afraid that, all things considered and despite her good works
in Green Witchcraft, her other series, that I must only give her
one half star out of five.  This is the worst rating ever, for
me.  Readers would be well advised to keep their money in their
pockets, rather than encourage shoddy scholarship like this.  In
this case, I must also condemn Llewellyn books for publishing
this tripe.  It's books like this and the 21 Lessons of Merlyn
that continue to give them a bad name.

           This review is available on our web site at

                         UPCOMING REVIEWS
       We've just received a list of new books and tarot
       decks Llewellyn is offering for the rest of 2001.
       Some of them sound like they might be very
       interesting. Hopefully, at least some of the books
       will live up to the hype. Here's a list of some of
       the more interesting sounding titles we are hoping

========= Author Unknown

Using a cauldron, symbol of inspiration and rebirth, has brought
new dimensions to both group and solitary work. A cauldron
decorates the center of the Circle during Lesser Sabbats. An air
cauldron at a spring rite creates a misty, magical quality for
the ceremony. In summer, the cauldron will flash and spark. A
blue flame burns mysteriously within the Water cauldron during
the autumn festival. Throughout Yule, the Earth cauldron burns
steadfast and constant. During moon rites, when magick is done,
we write the purpose of our working on flash papers and toss them
into the burning cauldron while chanting.

A working cauldron should be of cast iron, with a tight-fitting
lid, three sturdy legs, and a strong handle. Season your cauldron
before using it for the first time. Pour in generous helping of
salt and lighter fluid, slosh it up to the rim and wipe dry. For
indoor use it MUST have a fireproof base or your workings will
summon up yellow-coated salamander spirits from the fire

Earth Cauldron
Layer salt, wax shavings, three powered or ground herbs, lighter
fluid and ivy leaves in the cauldron while focus and chanting.
Use a candle to light it. When the smoke starts to roll,
extinguish the cauldron by putting the lid on.

Air Cauldron
Using tongs, put a chunk of dry ice is a small glass or ceramic
bowl and place the bowl on a cloth in the bottom of the cauldron.
Allow the cauldron to smoke as long as the ice lasts. The mists
create excellent images for scrying.

Fire Cauldron
Cover the inside bottom with dirt or sand to dissipate heat.
Light incense charcoal and add either salt peter for flame and
spark or flash powder for a different but spectacular effect. To
assist in releasing or firing off peak energy, try using flash
"bombs." Make a small pocket in a piece of flash paper, fill with
flash powder and tie with thread. The "bomb" should be about the
size of your smallest fingernail. The results are spectacularly
bright, so use the powder sparingly. Don't look directly at the
flash as you drop the "bomb" in the cauldron.

Water Cauldron
At least seven days before the ritual, place equal quantities of
three appropriate herbs in a pint glass jar. Fill the rest of the
jar with Everclear (200 proof alcohol), cap tightly, and shake
gently while concentrating on the purpose of the ritual. Add a
chant if its feels right. Let the jar rest in a dark, warm spot
and shake twice daily, charging with purpose. Before the ritual,
place a fireproof ceramic or glass bowl in the cauldron. Pour in
the herb mixture, being careful none spills into the cauldron.
Light with a candle to produce a beautiful blue flame.

The cauldron, as the fifth elemental spirit, symbolizes
inspiration, rebirth, illumination and rejuvenation. Use a Fire
cauldron with salt peter to cast a Circle. Use the mists of an
Air cauldron for an initiation. Burn away hate, prejudice and
negative self-images, with a Water cauldron. The Earth cauldron
is ideal for indoor Beltane rites.

Remember to place a burning cauldron on a fireproof surface.
Practice safety when using any volatile materials and you will
enjoy your cauldron for many rites.

========= Author Unknown

Don't try this unless you have a fairly large altar surface that
you don't mind being unable to use for other things for 4 days!

Decorate your altar with money-drawing herbs; sage, mandrake, red
clover, blood root, chammomile, nutmeg, myrrh, etc. (you don't
have to use them all).

Anoint one orange glass candle with money drawing oil and bless
it in the name of Isis of the Thousand Breasts. Place it in the
center of your altar; at the four corners of the universe (north,
east, south, west on your altar) put four green glass candles,
anointed with money drawing oil and magnet oil. Start after sunset,
once the first star of the evening is visible.

Light the 2 white altar candles (one each side) saying:

  Blessed be thou creature of fire.

Light your incense (High John the Conqueror or cinnamon, sage,
nutmeg, chammomile, etc. -- but NOT mandrake). Say:

  Great Mother, I come to you.
  I live in this world, and the wealth
  is all in the hands of the masters.
  Great Mother, we are asking you to help.
  You are the true owner of the wealth:
  please blow the karmic winds in our favor.
  Let my cupboard fill up with food, and my
  checkbook with balances.
  Allow me the livelihood of the daughters
  and sons of Isis:
  be my nurturing mother. I invoke Thee.
  Souls of nature,
  woven within all hearts,
  make the jobs go to  those who need them
  and all have enough.

Now light the orange candle and say:

  This candle represents me.
  Like the magnet,
  I draw encouragement, money, friends around me.

Then light the green candles all around (east to north). Say:

  Thus I draw money from the east,
  the south, the west and the north.

Surround your orange candle evenly with cinnamon and contemplate,

  Mine is the blood,
  the Mother's (Father's) blood which promises life.
  Mine is the blood which promises substance.
  Mine is the blood of the Lady of Plenty.
  The Goddess bestows reasonable wealth on Her
  sisters and brothers who ask for it.
  Great Goddess, bless my life with health,
  and let me have no more want.
  So mote it be!

Each day (for 3 days) repeat this ritual, moving the green
candles closer to the center. when their (fire-proofed)
containers touch, let them burn down all the way. While they
burn, always burn your money-drawing incense, and put all money
that comes to you onto your altar before depositing/spending it.
This can be followed with a white candle lit while the green
candles still burn, so the flame is continued from the spell.

========= Author Unknown

Here are some recipes for making some Lammas/Lughnasadh or
summertime incense, potpourri and philtre type potions.

Lammas incense

    2 parts frankincense
    2 parts sandalwood
    1 part pine resin
    1/2 part bay
    1/2 part cinnamon
    1/2 part coriander
    1/2 part meadowsweet
    1/2 part oregano
    1/2 part rosemary
    A few drops rose oil
    Slightly less oak moss oil
    Very little patchouli oil (start with one drop)

Mix well. Burn during Lughnasadh/Lammas rituals.

Lammas Ritual Potpourri

    20 drops clove bud oil
    25 drops sandalwood oil
    1 cup oak moss
    2 cups dried pink rosebuds
    2 cups dried red peony petals
    1 cup dried amaranth flowers
    1 cup dried heather flowers

Mix the clove bud and sandalwood oils with the oak moss and then
add the remaining ingredients. Stir the potpourri well and store
in a tightly covered ceramic or glass container. Simmer during
Lughnasadh/Lammas rituals.

Leo Incense

    2 Parts Gum Mastic
    1 Part sandalwood
    1 Part Juniper berries

Use as a personal altar or household incense to increase your
powers. Good for rituals done during the zodiac time of Leo.

Lughnasadh Incense #1

    2 parts dried rose petals
    1 part apple leaf
    1 part barley
    1 part yarrow
    1/2 part Irish moss
    1/2 part wheat
    1/2 part basil
    3 drops Cerridwen Oil (see Lammas Oils and Perfumes)
    1 drop Lugh Oil (see Lammas Oils and Perfumes)

Blend all ingredients and keep in a magick bag or bowl. To
charge, put it in a sacred space or bring to the
Lughnasadh/Lammas ritual for the energy of the Sun, growth,
healing, wealth, and protection of the Earth.

Lughnasadh Incense #2

    2 parts Frankincense
    1 part Heather
    1 part Apple blossoms
    1 pinch Blackberry leaves
    a few drops Ambergris oil

Burn Lughnasadh Incense during Wiccan rituals on August 1st or
2nd, or at that time to attune with the coming harvest.

Lughnasadh Incense #3

    2 parts meadowsweet
    3 parts chamomile
    5 parts goldenrod
    10 ml carnation oil per 8 oz. dry ingredients
    10 ml rose oil per 8 oz. dry ingredients

Mix together all dry ingredients and then mix in the oils. Burn
during Lughnasadh/Lammas rituals.

Lughnasadh Incense #4

    2 parts Benzoin
    1 part oakwood
    1/2 part basil
    2 parts frankincense
    1/2 part gorse flower
    1/2 part Borage
    few drops pine oil

Mix together all dry ingredients and then mix in the oils. Burn
during Lughnasadh/Lammas rituals.

Lughnasadh Philtre

    Poppy seeds
    Raspberry leaf
    Strawberry leaf
    3 drops Macha oil (see Lammas Oils and Perfumes)
    3 drops Cerridwen Oil (see Lammas Oils and Perfumes)
    3 drops Lugh Oil (see Lammas Oils and Perfumes)

Use the oils to bind the philtre. Blend all ingredients and keep
in a magickal bag. Tie onto a Witch's Cord and use in your
rituals and spells.

Sun God Incense

    Balm of Gilead
    Orris Root

Mix together well. Recipe calls for mixing "Equal" parts of each
ingredient. However, it makes for interesting flavors to use the
trial and error method to see what works best. Good for any Solar
rituals or when invoking any Solar Gods.

Sun Incense #1

    3 Parts Frankincense
    2 Parts Myrrh
    1 Part Wood Aloe
    1/2 part Balm of Gilead
    1/2 Part Bay
    1/2 Part Carnation
    few drops Ambergris Oil
    few drops Musk Oil
    few drops Olive Oil

Burn to draw the influences of the Sun and for spells involving
promotions, friendships, healing, energy and magickal power.

Sun Incense #2

    3 Parts Frankincense
    2 Parts Sandalwood
    1 Part Bay
    1 pinch Saffron
    few drops Orange Oil

Burn to draw the influences of the Sun and for spells involving
promotions, friendships, healing, energy and magickal power.

Sun Incense #3

    3 Parts Frankincense
    2 Parts Galangal
    2 Parts Bay
    1/4 Part Mistletoe *
    few drops Red Wine
    few drops Honey

Burn outside to draw the influences of the Sun and for spells
involving promotions, friendships, healing, energy and magickal

Thousand-Named Solar Incense

    3 Parts Frankincense
    1 Part Clove
    1/2 Part Red Sandalwood
    1/2 Part Sandalwood
    1/4 Part Orange Flowers
    3 pinches Orris

Burn for Solar influences.

========= Author Unknown

You know your coven is getting older when...

* The ritual feast is pureed.

* Last Beltaine the coven decided it would be nice to go out to
  dinner to celebrate.

* The last time you tried to do a spiral dance your oxygen feeds
  got tangled.

* Viagra is kept in the coven supplies.

* The maiden of the coven is a grandmother.

* The ritual room is outfitted with defibrillators.

* The coveners drive their RV's to Scottsdale for Mabon.

* When you are at a festival you go to bed at sunset.

* It takes the whole coven to move the cauldron.

* The high priest still has a vendetta going against Richard Nixon.

* You find yourself using your pendulum over the stock pages in
  the newspaper.

* You tell an initiate that in your day you had to slog through
  five feet of snow uphill both ways when you did a Yule ritual.

* You drop your teeth in the ritual cup.

* At Samhain you see more of your coveners in the Wild Hunt than
  you do in circle.

* You put your athame in the chalice during ritual but you can't
  remember why.

* You hold an all night blow-out drum frenzy and none of your
  neighbors noticed.

* You use Glenn Miller records for trance music.

* All of your ritual robes are tie-dyed

* Your coven has a 401(k) retirement plan.

* A nitro pill vial replaces the crystal on your pendant.

* No one's successfully jumped the Beltaine fire since 1983.

* When the coven sings, "Creak and groan, creak and groan . . ."

* When you set comfy chairs around the circle.

* When you sit on the floor and can't get up again.

* You do anointings with Aspercreme.

* The oak tree your coven planted died of old age.

* You use Bran Muffins and Prune Juice for Cakes & Ale
  because you need the extra fiber.

* You don't use salt to consecrate you altar because you need to
  stay away from extra sodium.

* You use a walker during the Wild Hunt.

* You prefer to rent a Hall for rituals because the bathrooms are

* You need a flashlight to find the candles.

========= Cauldron Info

The following new areas have been added to The Cauldron's web
site since our last issue.

 * Humor: White Light Coven Application


 * Humor: Evocation of the Pizza Delivery Lad


The following book and tarot reviews (some included in this
newsletter) are new to the web site:

 * Are We Living in the End Times


 * Ariadne's Thread


 * The Holy Book of Women's Mysteries


 * Origins of Modern Witchcraft (A Second Review)


========= Cauldron Info
========= NEW WEB POLLS

Two polls have opened since the last issue of Cauldron and

The first new poll, opened July 16, asks:

 * Faith or Reason. Which is more important to your religious

   Possible answers include:

   + Mainly faith
   + More faith than reason
   + Both equally important
   + More reason than faith
   + Mainly reason
   + Neither are that important
   + Other

   You will find this poll at:


Our newest poll, opened August 1, asks:

 * When you need non-mundane aid, do you (most often) pray for it
   or work magick for it?

   Possible answers include:

   + Work Magick
   + Pray
   + Both
   + Neither

   You will find this poll at:


Make your opinion known, take one or both polls today.

You'll find a list of all of our polls (over 20 now) at:


========= Cauldron Info

If you wish to purchase books or other items at Amazon.com, you
can help fund The Cauldron's web site by using this link to
access Amazon.com when you make your purchases:


Just use this link to go to Amazon.com via our web site and
almost every purchase you make that visit will earn The Cauldron
a small amount to help pay for our web page -- at no extra charge
to you. You can also use the Amazon link on the menu of every
Cauldron web page and not have to remember this long link.

Unlike the Amazon link listed in some prior issues of this
newsletter, you can simply visit this site and save the link in
your bookmark list. If you then use this bookmarked link every
time you wish to visit Amazon.com, any purchases you make while
there will help fund The Cauldron's web site.

========= Cauldron and Thicket Info


Cauldron Co-Host Elspeth Sapphire is thinking of starting a
monthly chat on the ecauldron mailing list's Yahoo chat room
starting in September.  If you are interested in seeing this
happen, start asking about this after mid-August.


The Thicket hosts several chats each week in their Delphi
(Java-based) chat area. You have to be a member of Delphi and The
Thicket to participate. You will find the chats by pointing your
browser to The Thicket's Start Page at:


Chats are normally being held on the following days and times
(all times are Central Time):

 * Monday at 11:30pm

 * Wednesday at 12:00 noon

 * Friday at 11:30pm

Please check on The Thicket's message board for changes to this

If "Central Time" doesn't mean anything to you, there's an online
time converter at http://sandbox.xerox.com/stewart/tzconvert.cgi
might help. I think Central Time is listed as something like "US
- Central" in the drop down box.

========= (Including how to subscribe and unsubscribe)

Cauldron and Candle is a free publication of The Cauldron: A
Pagan Forum with assistance from our sister form, The Witches'
Thicket. The Cauldron and The Thicket aim to publish this
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Copyrights on individual items in this newsletter are retained by
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Merry Meet, Merry Part, Merry Meet again!
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