[Cauldron and Candle Illo]


Cauldron and Candle
Issue #41 -- November 2003

A Publication of The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum
website: http://www.ecauldron.com/
message board: http://forums.delphiforums.com/CUSTOM7999/start


Return to Cauldron and Candle Archive

C A U L D R O N   A N D   C A N D L E  #41 -- November 2003

           A Publication of The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum
                website: http://www.ecauldron.com/
 message board: http://forums.delphiforums.com/CUSTOM7999/start
             newsletter: http://www.ecauldron.com/cnc/

In this Issue:

[01] Editorial Notes
[02] Poem: Toward Thargelion
[03] Cauldron News
[04] Cauldron Discussions
[05] Reviews
     [05-1] The Wicca Handbook
     [05-2] Philosophy of Wicca
     [05-3] Wicca: The Complete Craft
     [05-4] The Forest of Souls
     [05-5] Full Contact Magick
     [05-6] Maiden Magick
     [05-7] Exploring Chakras
     [05-8] The Elements of Ritual
[06] Received For Review (with Mini-Reviews)
[07] Articles:
     [07-1] Goddesses of the Sun
     [07-2] Candle Feelings
     [07-3] Ovro's "Malice In Underworld"
[08] Columns
     [08-1] TarotDeevah on the Tarot
     [08-2] Humor: The Perfect High Priestess (A Chain Letter)
     [08-3] Software Watch: Messenger Plus!
[09] Around the Planes: Notes from All Over
     [09-1] Fill'er Up with Cornstalks, Please
     [09-2] Chemical Safety In Your Home
     [09-3] Art Of Creating Sweet & Simple Spa Treatments at Home
     [09-4] Tips To Make Kids More Nice Than Naughty
     [09-5] Feeling Safe: What Girls Say, What Adults Can Do
[10] Support The Cauldron by Volunteering to Help
[11] Newsletter Information
              (Including How To Subscribe/Unsubscribe)

  +++ Submission Deadline for next issue: November 25, 2003 +++
     Guidelines: http://www.ecauldron.com/cnc/submissions.php

========= by Randall Sapphire

Welcome to the November 2003 issue of Cauldron and Candle. With
this issue we start our fourth year of monthly publication under
the Cauldron and Candle name. It's hard to believe that we've
been publishing this for three full years now -- while continuing
to maintain a large web site and one of the more active Pagan
discussion and debate message boards on the web. I hope you have
enjoyed our previous issues and will enjoy our future issues.

This is another very large issue. As promised last issue, Kensho
Godchaser's "Goddesses of the Sun: Exploring the Myth of the Moon
Goddess" is our feature article this month. We are also launching
a new short column on free (or low cost) windows software that I
discover on the net. While only some of the software highlighted
will by Pagan or magick oriented, all of it will be useful.

With Halloween/Samhain behind us, we are starting one of the
busiest times of the secular year: the holiday season. Many
important secular and religious holidays are coming up in the
next two months. While it is easy to get caught up in the secular
rush to buy presents, decorate, and cook huge holiday feasts,
most of us have religious holidays of one type or another in
November and December -- and it's important not to forget them in
the rush.

Enjoy the upcoming Holiday Season -- whatever holidays you

                      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 Todd Jackson
========= http://www.winterscapes.com/apollopoetry/main.htm

Leave others to the endless womb,
and to the smooth segue from womb to grave
With not one crack of cold dry light.
It is their avid wish, and I wish them well.
May some other God hold their hands in the dark.

My own years of bathos did not pass,
as is proper, with the end of boyhood
But they have now passed.
I am ready.

Teach me to see myself my own object.
Show me a shape no mere man may shape,
Then set me loose upon the dust.

Delphian Apollo, electric,
You have dazzled the horizon with virgin worlds.
I bid you set them spinning in my eyes like
Twin vortices.
Then lead me forward into the dawn.

========= by The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum Staff

===== The Cauldron's Message Board Sets Record in October

8703 messages were posted to The Cauldron's DelphiForums message
board in October 2003, surpassing the old record of 7435 posts
set last March by over 1200 posts. Thanks to everyone who
participates in The Cauldron's DelphiForums message board for
making it such a popular place.

===== Cauldron Delphi Message Board Top Poster -- October 2003

Daphne (MIDNIT3MAR3) had the most message board posts (but only
by three) of any eligible non-staff member in October and snagged
our monthly "top poster" award. Our Runner Up was Cat (XILAO).
Jenett (JENETT), Celeste (CELESTE621), Gwyn (GWYNYVYR), and
Dragonoake (DRAGONOAKE) gave Celeste a good race for that runner
up spot.

===== New "About The Cauldron" Section

The "About The Cauldron" section of our web site has been revised
and expanded to better describe The Cauldron's many features and
to make it more useful to new visitors.

Find out more "About The Cauldron"

===== Support The Cauldron As You Shop Online this Holiday Season
===== Shop Via Our Amazon.com and Cauldron Mall Links

It's that time of year again: the holiday shopping season. If you
are planning to shop online for family and friends, you can help
fund The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum as you shop by shopping at
Amazon.com and other stores in our mall via the links on our web
site. Each time you visit Amazon.com or one of our mall stores
from a link on The Caldron's web site and make a purchase, a
small percentage of your purchase price will go to The Cauldron
to fund our web site and other expenses -- and it will not cost
you a penny extra.

Shop at Amazon.com
Shop at the Cauldron Mall

===== New Special Topic Chat Logs Available

The Cauldron's "Special Topic Chats" (Tuesdays 8-10 PM US Eastern
Time) have been very popular thanks to all the effort Koi,
Shadow, and other staff members have put into them. We are trying
to log these chats and make those logs available on our web site
for those who cannot attend.

Logs of the following additional "Special Topic Chats" are
available in the Chat Logs section of our web site:

=== Creation!

The chat log for our September 30th "Creation!" chat is now
available on The Cauldron's web site. It was a discussion of
Creation: why we're here, how we got here, and where we're going
from various Pagan perspectives.



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


========= Recent Discussion Topics on our Message Board

In an average month, over 150 new discussion topics are started
on The Cauldron's message board. Here are a few of the more
interesting discussions from the last month. It's not too late to
join in.

Thanks to Bloglet, you can now receive an email every night on
days we post new site news items to the main page of The
Cauldron's web site. These emails contain a link to the new item
and the first couple of lines of the news text. You can sign up
for Bloglet's free news delivery via the form at the end of the
site "News and Updates" section of The Cauldron's main web page.

=== Walking Out Of Ritual

What would cause you to walk out of a ritual?

Personally, I never have but I've heard of some rituals where I
think I'd head for the door or gate. What about you?

* Read (or join in) this discussion:

=== Does Innocence Protect You?

There's a theory in some esoteric circles that innocence (whether
that's being a generally law-abiding sort of person, or being
ignorant of esoteric/occult stuff) provides a form of protection
from esoteric or occult problems (or at least some of them). Some
people believe that not believing in magic provides a form of
defense against negative magic, for example.

Alternately, there are people who think that moderately serious
investigation of esoteric/occult concepts can open you up to new
dangers in some ways (in some cases, I've heard this described as
getting a 'sign' over your head that can be picked up on by those
looking for that kind of thing: whether that's people or other

Still others believe that things like deliberately breaking
agreements (i.e. cheating, going against parental rules, etc.)
can open you up not just to a general karmic response (if you
believe in karma), but can specifically open you up to esoteric
dangers in various ways, sometimes on the theory that breaking
the rules means you're willing to have others break the
understood rules regarding you.

Do you think any of these are true? One of them? None of them?
All of them? Do you have experiences or stories you'd like to
share about any of these related issues?

* Read (or join in) this discussion:

=== Do the Gods Still Mate with Mortals?

In many mythologies, the Gods mated with mortals and often
produced heroic or even immortal offspring. Are the Gods still
mating with mortals and producing heroes or immortal beings?

* Read (or join in) this discussion:

=== What Is Your Response To Being Prayed For?

What is your response (either internal or expressed to the person
in question) when someone of a different religion says that they
will pray for you? I'm imagining that it might depend on the
circumstances and the person, so please allow me to be more

Scenario one: Something is going badly in your life. Let's say
you mention it in a post here (in passing, not asking for good
wishes) and get a response from someone you don't know very well,
or possibly even from a lurker you don't know at all, saying that
they will pray for you.

Scenario two: A random door-to-door proselytizer shows up at your
house. Whatever your response is, it indicates you're not
interested and prompts them to tell you that they will pray for
your immortal (and obviously corrupt) soul.

Is your response different in scenario one than it is in scenario
two? And does it make a difference if the person is someone you
know and are close to instead of some random person you've never
really met?

* Read (or join in) this discussion:

=== Ritual and Chronic Illness

In several books I have read that if you don't feel well or are
just plain sick "Do not participate in ritual or ritual magic
etc." What if you have a chronic illness such as I do? On my
worst days I don't make it out of bed so that's not a biggie, but
what about my everyday sickness when I feel better but am still
sick? I have not been able to find any answer to that question
anywhere. Does anyone else have a possible answer or suggestion?
I could really use one. I have a couple of times worked ritual
but have been extremely exhausted and have gotten worse after. Is
this why? Because I deplete my stores of energy? Any ideas?

* Read (or join in) this discussion:

=== When Should We Celebrate Holy Days and Festivals?

As a Catholic, we celebrate festivals on the day they occur, not
on the nearest Sunday. If All Saints' is on a Wednesday, we go to
church on Wednesday, and so forth. There are a few minor
exceptions to this rule (for example, so many holy days of
obligation fall between Christmas and New Year's that if certain
of those festivals are within one day of Sunday, certain Sunday
obligations are forgiven.)

Most Protestants, however, celebrate "All Saints' Sunday" on the
Sunday closest to All Saints' Day, and so forth. This makes for
many problems in Protestant churches trying to do Holy Week
before Easter - many congregations don't really feel like they
ought to have to attend on Good Friday. My Protestant friends,
however, think it's odd that I disrupt an entire week with
midweek observances that could be moved to a convenient weekend.

Pagans often face the same issues - celebrate rituals on
solstices and equinoxes/full moons? Or celebrate them at the
nearest day off? This is magnified (for Christians and Pagans) by
any nighttime or vigil rituals that involve being up half the

What do you prefer to do? Why? Do you think that either system is
clearly right or wrong? Do you feel that one is too rigid, or the
other too conformist?

* Read (or join in) this discussion:

=== Why Not Get Married?

I hear a lot about people that don't want to get married, for
whatever reason. They're living with the person, have for years,
consider themselves married, but don't want to do the legal
contract thing.

What I'm wondering is: why not? Is there something about the
commitment? the belief that it's none of the government's
business? bad experience with divorce lawyers? What? What's the
advantage of not getting married?

* Read (or join in) this discussion:

=== Where Have All The Gods Gone?

It seems like back in the olden days, the gods were always
hanging around. Whether it was cavorting with mortals, making
miracles, or just a good old-fashioned smiting, the older myths
are full of the clear and obvious presence of the Divine.
Nowadays, the deities seem more subtle, to say the least.

What do you think there is such a big difference between the
ancient stories and most modern religions? Is it because the
things people used to attribute to Divinity have been explained
by science? Is it because the Divine has withdrawn from the
earth? Is it because most people just don't know how to listen
any more? Is is all of these; is it something else? What do you

* Read (or join in) this discussion:

=== Silliest Ritual Ever?

What is the silliest ritual in which you have ever participated?
This could be intentionally silly (like when an acquaintance of
mine wrote a "SouthPark" ritual) or unintentionally silly, like
when the HP gets the giggles. What made it silly or funny?

* Read (or join in) this discussion:


       If you like The Cauldron and have a few extra
       dollars, please donate via the Amazon Honor System
       and help us pay the web site bills.


============    BOOK AND DECK REVIEWS

========= Reviewed by Seasons

The Wicca Handbook
Author: Eileen Holland
Trade Paperback, 320 pages
Publisher: Weiser
Publication date: May 2000
ISBN: 1578631351
US Retail Price: $16.95
Amazon Link:

I bought my copy of Eileen Holland's The Wicca Handbook for 50
cents at the employee bookstore. It has a nice cover in shades of
slate blues and greys. In the middle is a great big pentagram
with a handy crescent laying on top of it. Maybe that convenient
crescent is for "love" offerings. That central picture is
surrounded by two neato arches, presumably to keep rain off any
cash in the crescent. The arches are nicely decorated with neat
leafy and chainy doodles. There's two triskele-like things in the
top corners. And those are neat too.

The book reminds me of a nice text printout of the major sections
of a web page. Maybe the very same web page touted in the
author's bio. It's very convenient to have a text printout like
this so one can learn what real Wiccans do even when one's
parents or little brother are using the computer and you're
grounded so you can't use a friend's computer.

Holland is very good about letting us know that Wiccans aren't
the only kind of pagan around. Who those other pagans are is a
bit vague. We are also told that Wicca is today's modern
shamanism so even if it's a new religion it's an ancient one too.
One can just type what she says whenever questions like that
arise and presto! one will sound profound. Holland decrees that
like all pagans, Wiccans are polytheistic and worship the Great
Goddess. I was sad to hear no mention of the god. I guess that
means I can't be Wiccan anymore.

She glosses over the different traditions of Wicca, just
mentioning them so solitary Wiccans like her won't go "Huh?" when
they're mentioned. She mentions the holidays of the Wiccans and
our tools too, even arcane tools like scourges that she informs
us solitaries don't need.

Ethics are given a look too. Basically Wiccans practice white
magick because we follow the eight words of the Wiccan Rede which
are "all we need." She informs us that black magick is a no-no,
and that she won't even answer email from folks who do black
magick. Green magick is okay because Celts and faeries do it, but
grey magick is an illusion.

But enough theory. The bulk of the book is devoted to magickal
correspondences. All kinds! Numbers, letters, days of the week,
gemstones, elements, Watchtowers...a vast plethora of lists and
connections with nary an explanation of why any of them might be
so. After all, why clutter things up with speculation? There's
already so many words to memorize in order to become a powerful
White Witch.

           This review is available on our web site at

========= Reviewed by Sana

Philosophy of Wicca
Author: Amber Laine Fisher
Trade Paperback, 268 pages
Publisher: ECW Press
Publication date: April 2002
ISBN: 1550224875
US Retail Price: $19.95
Amazon Link:

To start, Ms Fisher makes one point in Philosophy of Wicca that
all-too-many texts on Wicca do not -- Wicca and Witchcraft are
not synonymous. They are related, but they are far from the same
thing. Unfortunately, that is the single accurate point made in
the entire book.

Ms Fisher does state in her introduction "This book is my
interpretation of Wicca". However, that is followed by 253 pages
that state unequivocally "Wicca is" and "Wiccans believe". This
would probably not be so bothersome if many of the things stated
were actually in line with the principles of Wicca. Perhaps Ms
Fisher should have spent more than 4 years in the religion before
attempting to write this book. (She says "the Goddess made
herself known" in 1995, and that she began this book in 1999.)
There are certainly areas where a lack of research shows -- most
obviously when she states in a footnote for Chapter 7 "The actual
Rede is a long poem with questionable roots, as the author is
unknown." The history of the Rede, and a significant amount of
the material that influenced its authors is easily available with
a simple web search.

There are two areas where I have significant disagreement with
the author, and these fundamental areas greatly influence the
entire tone and scope of the book. The most far-reaching
difference is the role of spirituality and the nature of
Divinity. Ms Fisher states that "the purpose of any spiritual
path is to compel the individual to ascent to Heaven" and "in
truth, even in Wicca there is a chasm between the individual and
the ultimate first creator". This is not a common view in Wicca
-- very few Wiccans "hope and pray that the Goddess has a plan,
and that all of these things somehow fit into that plan" or
believe that our entire purpose for existence is "to carry out
the will of the Goddess." Wicca is not about "Jehovah in skirts"!
I find Ms Fisher's view of divinity quite disturbing in the
context of statements full of "Wicca as a whole" and "most
Wiccans believe".

The second significant difference is in the role of Traditions,
and in the nature of Wicca itself. Ms Fisher states "Certainly
there will be tenets of Wicca that we do not accept -- throw
those out!" While there is definitely room to personalize your
path in Wicca, can you still be said to practice a religion if
you throw out several of the basic tenets of that religion? There
are many ways to approach the core tenets of Wicca, but all
differences and traditions aside there are a few core concepts
that make Wicca what it is. Without those core concepts, it does
not matter what you label something, it does not make it Wicca.

Ms Fisher calls many Traditional practices "childish tendencies"
and "unabashed immaturity", and believes that "Wicca has a lot of
growing to do" to be a real religion. Considering these
statements, and the many misrepresentations in her book, I have
come to the conclusion that Ms Fisher really does not understand
"the Philosophy of Wicca". From where I stand, it appears that
the one "creating an unnecessary chasm between the seeker and
true knowledge" is Ms Fischer herself.

           This review is available on our web site at

========= Reviewed by Sana

Wicca: The Complete Craft
Author: D.J. Conway
Trade Paperback, 460 pages
Publisher: Crossing Press
Publication date: September 2001
ISBN: 1580910920
US Retail Price: $22.95
Amazon Link:

I picked up a copy of Wicca: The Complete Craft because of the
number of people telling me that this was so much better than
Conway's other poorly done books. After reading it, I strongly

Beginning in the introduction, when she incorrectly states that
"the words Wicca, Witchcraft and the Craft are actually
interchangeable", there is very little here that can't be found
in dozens of other phony McWicca-lite introductory texts.

Her history is based on the myth that there was once a peaceful
matriarchy, and everyone worshipped "the Goddess" until evil
patriarchy came along and spoiled everything. She would do well
to actually read some of the accurate archaeological works listed
in her bibliography!

She proceeds to confuse the term "Paganism". In spite of the way
she misuses the word, "Paganism" is actually a large group of
related, but highly dissimilar religions. It is not a single path
"based on a specific pantheon of deities", and there are
certainly more than "a few differences between Wicca and
Paganism, besides the difference in their ages". (And no religion
can be dated back to the Stone Age! No one knows what beliefs
existed then, what their 'religious' practices were, or even if
they had any religious beliefs!) She also defines many Traditions
within Wicca inaccurately, and shows little understanding of the
history of Wicca, or the various practices that define it's many

When speaking of deities, she first states that Wicca is
polytheistic, then proceeds to "explain" that all Gods are a
reflection of a single God archetype, and even the Gods are
subservient to the Goddess. (That's not polytheism.) She also
speaks of Triple aspects of Goddess, saying that this is a
universal concept, and that it has been recognized "from the
beginning of religion". This is untrue. (She has quite a habit of
stating historical "facts" that are contrary to the
archaeological evidence, without stating where she is obtaining
her "information". She also frequently states conclusions of how
found items were used or what they signify that are very
different from what the scholars who are trained to interpret
such finds conclude. Especially when the archaeologists determine
that no conclusions can be made from the evidence available.)

In my opinion, Ms Conway's version of "Wicca" is a blend of New
Age thought, ceremonial magic influence, and poor research. While
I don't doubt that it could be used to create a viable and valid
spiritual path, it bears little relation to actual Wicca. If one
wishes to learn about Wicca, I would strongly suggest starting
with 21st Century Wicca by Jennifer Hunter or The Heart of Wicca
by Ellen Cannon Reed, then moving to books such as When, Why...
If by Robin Wood, and books by Doreen Valiente, Patricia
Crowther, and Gerald Gardner. No, it won't be as easy as what
Conway has written... but real Wicca cannot be condensed into a
400-page how-to manual.

           This review is available on our web site at

========= Reviewed by Sana

The Forest of Souls: A Walk Through the Tarot
Author: Rachel Pollack
Paperback, 312 pages
Publisher: Llewellyn
Publication date: September 2002
ISBN: 1567185339
US Retail Price: $14.95
Amazon Link:

In her new work, Rachel Pollack takes readers deeper into the
Tarot than many would have thought possible. She says that "the
Tarot works best as an instrument of our wisdom when we dare to
ask it outrageous questions...." and she does, indeed, ask
questions and explore concepts that are both complex and

The Forest of Souls: A Walk Through the Tarot is written so that
people who have had little exposure to Tarot can follow along
(cards from many decks are reproduced right in the text), but
also where people who have spent years studying can find new
things - even the third and fourth times through.

Rachel encourages us to let go of more traditional definitions
and layouts, and to use the cards in "divine play". With tales of
myth and history from different cultures and traditions, she
moves from the origins of the Tarot to the origins of the
universe... and through the inner workings of the human soul.

Although this book is not about how to read the Tarot, it will
significantly enhance your reading skills and enlarge your notion
of what the Tarot can be and do. Many of the questions pondered
also create transformation experiences as Rachel leads us to
"explore possibilities outside our normal ways of thought."

I highly recommend Forest of Souls to anyone interested in Tarot,
no matter what their level of experience or skill.

           This review is available on our web site at

========= Reviewed by Sana

Full Contact Magick: A Book of Shadows for the Wiccan Warrior
Author: Kerr Cuhulain
Trade Paperback, 312 pages
Publisher: Llewellyn
Publication date: September 2002
ISBN: 0738702544
US Retail Price: $14.95
Amazon Link:

Kerr Cuhulain's new work, Full Contact Magic: A Book of Shadows
for the Wiccan Warrior, has me quite torn -- in many areas it is
much better than a great number of recent "101"-type books... but
there are also a great number of contradictions, a rather
dismissive attitude toward those who view a Warrior's path
differently from the author, and personal views touted as Wiccan
bedrock. I am quite conflicted whether to recommend it, or
recommend against it!

Kerr's writing is very conversational, and many points are
illustrated with real-world examples that make it much easier to
grasp Kerr's viewpoints. The material is well-organized, and
well-footnoted for further reading. The Rede is discussed much
more rationally than I have seen a majority of books, care is
taken to distinguish Wicca from the many other Pagan religions,
and he defers to Ronald Hutton on many matters of documentable
history. There is a great deal of information about energy work
that can be useful -- particularly to folks who may not perceive
energy in the visual ways commonly referred to.

On the other hand, Kerr also exaggerates situations and
paraphrases portions of his source material to make them fit his
personal ideals (something he criticizes in both of his books), a
number of elements are not identified as opinions of the author
but are instead inaccurately presented as general views of Wicca,
and several elements that do derive from Traditional Wicca are
changed, but the changed form is presented as the Traditional
form without any note of how or why they have been changed.

There is much here that may make this well worth purchasing...
but brush up on your critical reading skills beforehand, and
follow up with some of the source works noted in the footnotes
and bibliography.

           This review is available on our web site at

========= Reviewed by Randall Sapphire

Maiden Magick: A Teen's Guide to Goddess Wisdom and Ritual
Author: C.C. Brondwin
Trade Paperback, 221 pages
Publisher: New Page Books
Publication date: April 2003
ISBN: 1564146707
US Retail Price: $12.99
Amazon Link:

Maiden Magick: A Teen's Guide to Goddess Wisdom and Ritual is a
book about Goddess spirituality for teenage girls, presented as
if written by "your very own Clan Mothers, the ancient Celts of
the Goddess Clan." The Goddess spirituality presented in this
book is vaguely Wicca and somewhat Celtic -- and definitely aimed
at teenage girls. It presents an eclectic mixture of magick,
spirituality, psychology, and just plain old good advice aimed at
helping a young woman grow and mature within a Pagan framework. A
good amount of basic and somewhat eclectic Pagan knowledge gets
passed on in the process, but I'm not sure that teaching Paganism
is really a major goal of this book.

This book is somewhat different than many of the "Wicca for
Teens" books I've read. It's not mainly about magick or religion,
it's about growing up into a capable adult woman via Goddess
spirituality. Those looking for spells to attract popular
boyfriends or to control their school bus driver -- or for
detailed religious instruction -- will be disappointed. While I
think a bit more in the religious instruction department would be
nice, I think this is a book that many parents on a Goddess-
oriented Pagan path will want to consider as a gift for a
daughter entering her teen years.

           This review is available on our web site at

========= Reviewed by Randall Sapphire

Exploring Chakras: Awaken Your Untapped Energy
Author: Susan G. Shumsky
Trade Paperback, 284 pages
Publisher: New Page Books
Publication date: May 2003
ISBN: 1564146561
US Retail Price: $14.99
Amazon Link:

According to the introduction to Exploring Chakras: Awaken Your
Untapped Energy, the author spent 21 years studying under
Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the founder of Transcendental Meditation,
part of the time in India. This gives her a unique view of
Eastern systems like chakras and yoga -- a level of understanding
that many in the Western world probably cannot achieve. I know
that while the chakras have always interested me, I found most
books on the subject I have seen to be either superficial (and
generally written by Westerners) or impenetrable (and generally
written by someone from the East).

Therefore, I did not hold out a lot of hope for Susan Shumsky's
Exploring Chakras. I expected an impenetrable book written by
someone from the west who had lived and studied so long in the
East that she might as well have been from the orient herself. I
was wrong.

Shumsky starts out explaining the basics: what the kundalini
force is, what a chakra is, what prana is, what yoga is, etc.
These are explained both simply and directly, in clear and
understandable language -- even if the text is sprinkled with
many foreign words. I was impressed and decided to give the book
more attention than I had originally intended.

Exploring Chakras is divided into three parts. The first third of
the book deals with the very basics. It discusses prana,
kundalini, your subtle bodies and their relationship to the
macrocosm. You don't actually get to the details of the chakras
until page 104. Shumsky managed to make all this background
material interesting -- helped by numerous illustrations and
charts. The second part of the book deals with understanding and
awakening your chakras. A chapter is devoted to each chakra,
which allows for a fairly detailed introduction. Each chapter
includes basic exercises to open that chakra. The final section
of the book discusses awakening and using kundalini and describes
the techniques mentioned in the exercises for opening chakras
in the second section.

I liked this book and learned quite a bit from it. However, it
has one major problem. It is obviously written as a companion
book to the author's Exploring Meditation. Many of the exercises
refer to this companion volume for additional information and for
meditations. I probably would have got more from Exploring
Chakras: Awaken Your Untapped Energy if I had read Exploring
Meditation first. Also, since I am not an expert on Eastern
techniques, I cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information in
this book, but as I mentioned in the first paragraph, the
author's credentials are excellent. If you are interested in
learning about the Chakra system, I think this book is an
excellent place to begin. You might want to purchase a copy of
the companion volume as well.

           This review is available on our web site at

========= Reviewed by Randall Sapphire

The Elements of Ritual: Air, Fire, Water, & Earth in the Wiccan
Author: Deborah Lipp
Trade Paperback, 273 pages
Publisher: Llewellyn
Publication date: July 2003
ISBN: 073870301X
US Retail Price: $16.95
Amazon Link:

There are a large number of Wicca 101 books, most average in
quality at best, that attempt to introduce the reader to the
basics of various versions of the Wiccan religion. Many Wiccans
buy five, ten or even more of them. Not because they are so dense
that they need multiple introductory texts to learn the basics of
their religion, but because advanced texts are few and far
between. Therefore they buy intro book after intro book hoping to
find something new in each one. Publishers seem reluctant to
publish many non-introductory books on Wicca. I'm not sure why
this is as the same publishers sell advanced texts on astrology,
tarot, and other similar topics.

Deborah Lipp's The Elements of Ritual: Air, Fire, Water, & Earth
in the Wiccan Circle is one of those rare advanced books on
Wicca. While those without a good basic knowledge of the religion
will probably not get much from reading this book, I am happy to
see this book published and hope that it will be the start of a
publishing trend. Wicca doesn't need a dozen or so additional
introductory books each year.

The title of this book, The Elements of Ritual, has a double
meaning. In her book, Lipp goes through the standard Wiccan
ritual structure and discusses the meaning and ritual design
options possible for each element of the ritual from preparation
to closing the circle. She also discusses how the steps of ritual
relate to the four elements.

This book is arranged in a straightforward and logical order. A
brief introduction explains what this book is about. This is
followed by a short chapter on the elements and how the elements
are worked into the structure of the book. The next four long
chapters discuss the stages and elements of Wiccan ritual in
detail from various points of view: the practical (what is done
and how can it be done), the theological (why is it done), the
metaphorical (what is the mythology or story behind things), and
the mystical/magical. As Wicca ritual can vary, the author often
mentions various choices that can be made along the way and often
gives sample pieces of ritual. The final short chapter is a
complete ritual script with all the choices made by the author as
an example of Wiccan ritual design.

Wiccan Ritual Design: that's really what this book is all about.
Good Wiccan ritual doesn't just happen, it has to be created by
someone who thoroughly understands the purpose and meaning behind
all of the various parts that make up the standard Wiccan ritual
structure. Lipp teaches this important background in this book.
According to her biography, she has the experience to do so. She
was initiated into a traditional Gardnerian coven in 1981, became
a High Priestess in 1986, and has been teaching and leading
ritual ever since.

With the wide range of beliefs and practices in Wicca today, I'm
sure that there will be some Wiccans who will find Lipp's ideas
alien to their version of Wicca. However, I feel that most
Wiccans can greatly increase their understanding of their
religion's rituals by studying The Elements of Ritual: Air, Fire,
Water, & Earth in the Wiccan Circle. I urge all Wiccans,
especially those who lead ritual or hope to lead ritual, to read
this book. Unless you come from a coven with an excellent
training program, I think most of this material will be new to
you. I suspect the average Wiccan will find more new and useful
information here than in all the Wicca 101 books published in the
last few years.

           This review is available on our web site at

========= by Randall Sapphire

The following books and decks have been received for review in
late October 2003 and may be reviewed more fully in future
issues. "First Glance Comments" included with these listings are
exactly what they seem to be: my first impression of the item
from a quick glance through the book or deck. Be aware that these
views could change drastically after a more complete examination.
If you are waiting for a particular review, remember that reviews
appear on our web site as they are finished -- often a good while
before they are published in the newsletter.

Before You Cast A Spell
by Carl McColman (New Page Books)
ISBN: 1564147169
First Glance Comments: This book takes a different approach to
      magick by discussing the theoretical and ethical
      underpinnings of magick. Or, at least, of magick as seen
      from a fairly modern (and fairly "New Generation" Wiccan)
      point-of-view. The author sees magick as "spiritual power,"
      teaches Wiccan Rede/Threefold Law-based ethics, and
      otherwise has a point-of-view that will make sense more to
      Wiccans than ceremonial mages, atheists, or magick workers
      following non-Wicca-like Pagan religions. Even from a quick
      glance, I can see that this book has some excellent points
      and some points I disagree strongly with. While I think
      books like this are a good idea, I'll have to read the book
      fully to decide if this book is a good example of this good
More Info from Amazon.com:

Hoodoo Mysteries
by Ray Malbrough (Llewellyn)
ISBN: 0738703508
First Glance Comments: This book discusses Louisiana Hoodoo.
      According to the author, Hoodoo is a Black American
      variation on the magickal (but not the religious) practices
      of Vodoun, which makes considerable, but unorthodox, use of
      Catholic Saints in its rituals. This book seems to provide
      quite a bit of information on the practice Hoodoo, although
      I have no idea how accurate it is (especially as I know
      some do not think highly of some of the author's previous
      works). In some places it seems to be talking about Vodoun
      instead of Hoodoo. Divination methods and some rituals and
      magickal procedures are provided. At first glance, it looks
      interesting and readable.
More Info from Amazon.com:

The Pocket Spell Creator
by Kerri Connor (New Page Books)
ISBN: 1564147150
First Glance Comments: This is a small book of lists. Lists of
      the magickal associations of things like the elements, the
      moon and its phases, the days of the week, colors, crystals
      and stones, foods, herbs and plants, and oils. There are
      also lists of oil, incense, and bath salts recipes and a
      collection of pre-written incantations (mainly doggerel as
      most incantations seem to be). In other words this is a
      small handbook written for those who construct their own
      spells. Like most such handbooks, it does not teach, it
      just provides information for those who already have the
      knowledge to make use of it.
More Info from Amazon.com:

The Dark Archetype
by Denise Dumars and Lori Nyx (New Page Books)
ISBN: 1564146936
First Glance Comments: This book deals with the "dark" side of
      mythology and magick, the part that is often swept under
      the rug in the interest of making the universe look safe
      and inoffensive. This book discusses deities such as
      Hecate, Hel, Kali, Loki. Set, Shiva, Tezcatlipoca. I can't
      vouch fort the accuracy of the information, but at first
      glance they seem interesting and there are some academic
      works in the bibliography. The information on Hecate at
      least mentions things like she was not a crone or part of a
      triple Goddess in ancient Greece, always a good sign. A
      spell or ritual created around each deity makes up the
      latter half of the book.
More Info from Amazon.com:

Tarot Tells The Tale
by James Ricklef (Llewellyn)
ISBN: 0738702722
First Glance Comments: I don't usually review uncorrected proofs,
      but occasionally a book is so good that I break my own
      rule. Tarot Tells the Tale is a marvelous idea. One of the
      best ways to learn to read cards well is to see sample
      readings by an expert. This book provides 22 three card
      readings (and one longer celtic cross reading) for the
      questions of famous people in history, mythology, and
      fiction. The result is a wonderfully enjoyable book that
      provides many entertaining examples of how the cards work
      together in a reading, the way a professional reading
      handles questions, and the power of the simple three card
      reading. If you read Tarot cards, buy this book when it
      comes out.
More Info from Amazon.com:

The Circle Within
by Dianne Sylvan (Llewellyn)
ISBN: 0738703486
First Glance Comments: There are a lot of books on the basics of
      Wiccan beliefs and practices, but unlike most religions,
      there aren't yet many books on how to be a better Wiccan.
      This book is a start. It is a discussion of how to live as
      a Wiccan and grow spiritually closer to the Wiccan God and
      Goddess. The first part discusses Wiccan ethics and
      philosophy while the second deals with creating a personal
      spiritual practice for daily life. I can't tell from a
      brief glance how well the author does, but I have to
      applaud the attempt.
More Info from Amazon.com:

A Wiccan Bible
by A.J. Drew (New Page Books)
ISBN: 1564146669
First Glance Comments: At first glance, this book disturbs me.
      Its chapters are called "books" to make it seem more like
      a bible, I guess. It's a combination of the author's
      opinions which often seem counter to -- and even hostile to
      -- traditional Wicca mixed with all sorts of lists and
      tables (some examples: holidays in Rome and Greece, and a
      huge list of deities from around the world). It's a long
      book with a lot of information and I admit I've only taken
      a brief glance at it for these first comments, but at first
      glance I really don't like it because from what little I've
      read I think it strays too far from traditional Wicca.
More Info from Amazon.com:

The Sacred Magick of Ancient Egypt
by Rosemary Clark (Llewellyn)
ISBN: 1567181309
First Glance Comments: The first thing I noticed about this book
      is that it is not Egypt shoved into a Wiccan framework, it
      is apparently an attempt to provide the ancient rituals and
      practices of Egypt in English for modern use. I'm not an
      Egyptian historian or reconstructionist, so I cannot
      comment on its accuracy or authenticity, but many of the
      references in the bibliography are to scholarly books and
      journals which is a good sign. The book seems dense, but
      interesting, on first glance.
More Info from Amazon.com:

Witchy Tarot
by Antonella Platano (Lo Scababeo/Llewellyn)
ISBN: 0738704458
First Glance Comments: The theme of this Tarot deck is teen
      witches: mainly modern witches and mostly female. While is
      deck is obviously designed to be attractive to the teen
      market, it is a clean, usable deck with very nice art. A
      few minor changes have been made to the traditional Tarot.
      The suits are Cauldrons (cups), Boulders (pentacles),
      Flames (wands), and Broomsticks (swords). The court cards
      have been replaced completely with Celebration, Moon,
      Goddess, and Trial. The former works, the latter confuses
      me a bit.
More Info from Amazon.com:

Tarot of the New Vision
by Raul and Gianluca Cestaro (Lo Scarabeo/Llewellyn)
ISBN: 073870413X
First Glance Comments: This is the most interesting idea for a
      Tarot deck I've seen in many years. Take a card from the
      Rider-Waite deck, imagine yourself walking around the
      figure(s) on the card and looking at the scene from the
      opposite direction, allowing you to discover what can be
      seen "behind" the standard view. This makes a lot of
      additional symbolism available. While I'm not sure I agree
      with all of the new symbolism, almost every card is
      interesting. If you like the Rider-Waite deck or its
      variations, you really should take a look at this deck.
More Info from Amazon.com:

Karma Oracle
by Laura Tuan and Silvana Alasia (Lo Scarabeo/Llewellyn)
ISBN: 0738702412
First Glance Comments: This is a set of 33 divination cards and
      a 48 page instruction booklet. The cards are of Vedic and
      Hindu deities, their mounts, and attributes. The art style
      is reminiscent of some Hindu art that I've seen. The theme
      of the deck is karma. From a first glance the system
      presented seems workable and is explained in just enough
      detail to be usable.
More Info from Amazon.com:

Essential Energy Balancing II
by Diane Stein (Crossing Press)
ISBN: 1580911544
First Glance Comments: I've never seen the first book in this
      series. It reportedly deals with cleansing one's soul of
      negative karma suffered on Earth. This second book, like
      most of the author's works, seems primarily aimed at women
      and extends the first book's idea to past lives and, from a
      first glance, other planets -- including strange stories of
      humanity originating on other planets. (Pardon me while I
      roll my eyes and gag.) The exercises may be better, but the
      titles of some them (e.g. "Sealing the Planet") make me
      wonder if I'll even be able to read them without giggling.
More Info from Amazon.com:

by Charles Leland and A.J. Drew (New Page Books)
ISBN: 1564146790
First Glance Comments: While this is a nicely printed edition of
      Leland's 1899 book, Aradia or the Gospel of Witches with an
      introduction and commentary by A.J. Drew. If you need a
      copy of Aradia, which is certainly an important document in
      the history of Wicca as the Charge of the Goddess is taken
      from it, this is a nice copy. Unfortunately, from a first
      glance Drew's introduction and commentary really add little
      to the book, failing even to point out the many problems
      modern scholars have with the book.
More Info from Amazon.com:

Angel Voices
by Laura Tuan and Antonella Casttelli (Lo Scarabeo/Llewellyn)
ISBN: 0738714164
First Glance Comments: This is an 80 card divination deck based
      on Judeo-Christian angels and astrology. The deck is made
      up of 72 angel cards, 7 archangel cards and one angelic
      palace. The cards are done in mostly muted colors and each
      depict an angel against a cloud or sky background. A 190
      page trade paperback is included to explain the
      interpretation and use of the deck.
More Info from Amazon.com:

The Complete Guide to Divination
by Cassandra Eason (Crossing Press)
ISBN: 1580911382
First Glance Comments: This book is a introductory survey of ten
      popular divination systems: tarot cards, playing cards, the
      I Ching, runes, crystal divination, tree divination, tea
      leaf reading, numerology, pendulum dowsing, and palmistry.
      The amount of information provided varies from system to
      system, but appears to be enough to get started and do
      useful divination with each system.
More Info from Amazon.com:

Polarity Magic
by Wendy Berg and Mike Harris (Llewellyn)
ISBN: 0738703001
First Glance Comments: My first look at this book confuses me.
      Its subtitle, "The Secret History of Western Religion,"
      sets off all sorts of alarm bells in my mind, especially
      when I look at the book's non-academic bibliography.
      However, the back cover describes the book as talking about
      the "secret history of sexuality" in the Western Magickal
      Tradition. I can't tell from a quick glance through the
      book which it really is. If Polarity Magic is about the
      Western Magickal Tradition, its authors look well-
      qualified. If it's another revisionist view of religious
      history, however, it probably isn't worth reading.
      Unfortunately, I will not know which it is until I read it.
      Watch for my full review.
More Info from Amazon.com:

by Carl F. Neal (Llewellyn)
ISBN: 0738703362
First Glance Comments: If you have ever wanted to make your own
      incense but had no idea how to go about doing so, this
      might be a good book to start with. From a quick glance, it
      looks like a good introduction to incense and incense
      making. The book seems easy to read and gives explanations
      of terms and procedures instead of just recipes. There's
      even a chapter on troubleshooting the problems one may
      encounter when making incense.
More Info from Amazon.com:

The Wicca Herbal
by Jamie Wood (Celestial Arts)
ISBN: 1587611694
First Glance Comments: This book is a fairly basic herbal,
      providing a few paragraphs of information on the magickal
      and medicinal uses of about 100 different herbs. What sets
      this book apart from other herbals is that at least one
      recipe or ritual is provided for each herb. The info on the
      herbs themselves seems skimpy, however. It appears to be
      more of a herbal cookbook and ritual book than what I
      expect when I see a book described as a "Herbal."
More Info from Amazon.com:

============    ARTICLES

=========   Exploring the Myth of the Moon Goddess
========= by Kensho Godchaser (http://www.KenshoGodchaser.com/)

Wiccans and Pagans strongly emphasize the relationship between
the Goddess and the moon; indeed, "drawing down the moon" is a
synonym for "invoking the Goddess". Some Web sites, such as the
MoonXscape site, declare flatly that "the Moon is a female
object", and that "[t]he moon is the archetypal female symbol."

The truth is that the "Moon Goddess" is a confluence of
historical fact and modern Wiccan myth. While it is true that the
moon is a possible symbol of the feminine archetype, there is no
lack of historical Goddesses who embody the sun. Indeed, it was
customary in the Bronze Age for the Goddess to rule the sun, and
for the moon to belong to the sphere of the ever-dying, ever-
resurrected God-King. A mythological inversion around the time of
Hammurabi switched these assignments, leading many modern Pagans
to assume them as the default.

(Note that, in this essay, the word "myth" should not be taken in
the lay sense of "falsehood" or "lie", but in the spiritual sense
of "a story which points to a greater, underlying truth". My goal
is not to "explode Wiccan myths", but to show how this myth
evolved - and how it is only one of several possible myths you
can integrate into your spiritual practice.)

===== The Moon Goddess

Moon Goddesses appear throughout the mythologies of the world. In
Greek mythology, this honor goes to Hekate, particularly in her
aspect of Hekate Selene (often just Selene or Semele; sometimes
Helen or Helena; Roman Luna). Hekate is the Triformis (Triple)
Goddess: Maiden (waxing), Mother (full) and Crone (waning).
[Editor's Note: This is the Romanized mythology. The ancient
Greeks saw Hekate as a young woman who was not a part of a triple
Goddess.] In Graves' (1955) words, "Core, Persephone and Hekate
were, clearly, the Goddess in triad as Maiden, Nymph, and Crone,
at a time when only women practiced the mysteries of agriculture"
(p. 92). While the Triformis Goddess is native to Greek
mythology, the association of the Triformis with the moon phases
seems to have been spurred by Robert Graves (1948, p. 386).

The death or disfiguration of the Goddess, and her subsequent
transformation into the moon, is a common theme in mythology.
Joseph Campbell (1962) tells of the West Ceramian myth of Rabia,
whose refusal to marry Tuwale the sun-man caused her to expire
and, three days later, take her place in the heavens as the moon
(p. 176). The Aztecs viewed the moon as the severed head of the
Goddess Coyolxauhqui, while the Cambodian moon Goddess Biman Chan
was born when Her head was severed by the wind and reattached by
a Buddhist monk (Husain [1999], p. 67).

Due to its cyclical nature of waxing and waning, the moon is
often associated with or personified as the Goddess - the
guardian of the feminine mysteries, including the mystery of
creation. As Starhawk (1981) says:

    The celestial Goddess is seen as the moon, who is linked to
    women's monthly cycles of bleeding and fertility. Woman is
    the earthly moon; the moon is the celestial egg, drifting in
    the sky womb, whose menstrual blood is the fertilizing rain
    and the cold dew; who rules the tides of the oceans, the
    first womb of life on earth. (p. 92)

It is hard to tell which cultures explicitly made this
association between the female menstrual cycle and the phases of
the moon. [1]

===== The Sun Goddess

However, there is also a long and storied tradition associating
the Goddess, not with the moon, but with the sun. The most well-
known example is Amaterasu, the Shinto Goddess whose origins
extend back to the KOJIKI and the NIHONGI, the most ancient
sacred texts of Japan. According to legend (Husain [1997]),
Amaterasu was mortally offended by her brother Susan-O and hid
herself in a cave in anger, depriving the world of sunlight. The
world grew dark until the shaman, no-Uzume, coaxed her out with a
raucous dance; upon emerging into the world, Amaterasu caught her
reflection in a mirror, and decided to bring her radiance back to
the world (pp. 63-66).

In Egyptian mythology, the moon belonged to Thoth, a servant of
Osiris. The sun was the domain of Hathor, who is often pictured
as a cow with a solar disk between her horns.

One of the most complex Goddesses of the Bronze Age, Inanna, was
not assigned to the moon either; rather, as the daughter of the
moon God Nanna and the moon Goddess Ningal, she was "First
Daughter of the Moon" (Wolkstein, p. 44), as well as the "Goddess
of the New Moon" (Catshaman). Inanna is, in the words of Diane
Wolkstein (1983), "not only...a sky or moon goddess, but...the
goddess who rules over the sky, the earth, and the underworld."
(p. xvi) It is not clear that the Sumerians ever considered a
"moon Goddess" per se, but rather considered her both the sun and
the moon, which they saw as a symbol of order and cosmic harmony.
What little Sumerian poetry we do have relating to Inanna makes
more of her association with the sun and the light. One hymn
(Wolkstein [1983]) calls her the "Great Torch" who "fill[s] the
sky with light". The same hymn goes on to establish her identity
with both vessels:

    Mighty, majestic and radiant,
    You shine brilliantly in the evening,
    You brighten the sky at dawn... (p. 93)

===== The Moon-Bull

Joseph Campbell helps to put these conflicting associations into
perspective. The association of the Goddess with the moon in the
West is largely a post-Bronze Age, post-matriarchical development
(hence its appearance in the largely patriarchical Greek
culture). In ancient Egypt, the moon was represented as a
sacrificial bull. As mentioned above, the Egyptian moon God was
Thoth - and his master was Osiris, one of mankind's first
examples of the dead and resurrected God. We can see here the
mythological sense: The moon dies and is reborn both every night
(with the rising and setting of the sun) and every month (as it
wanes to new and then waxes to full) - a fitting parallel indeed
to the dying God.[2] This parallel was carried forth into
Mithraism, where the bull, identified with the moon, is
slaughtered as a symbolic defeat of personal ego (Nabaraz).

This argument is strengthened by the Bronze Age's tradition of
religious regicide. The Sumerians, Indians, Sudan, Indonesia, and
Egyptians of the Upper Nile, among others, knew this practice:
when the king died - either of natural causes or ritualistically,
at a time augured by the city-state's priests and usually aligned
with some cosmic event - his entire court was buried with him
(Campbell [1962], p. 69). The king could take on the personage of
the sun or the moon, depending on the preferences of the city-
state's local cult. Frequently, however, he took on the moon,
enacting in life the legend of the Moon (the God) descending to
the underworld, followed by the Sun or Venus (the Goddess), who
retrieves him (Campbell [1959], p. 166, 409).

Mythology took a turn for the monotheistic around the time of the
Babylonian king Hammurabi. With the introduction of the
Babylonian God Marduk, we see the tendency to elevate one God
above all others - a position that this God attains through the
use of warrior skill against a hateful Goddess. Marduk achieves
his position through triumph over the Goddess Tiamat; hundreds of
years later, in Greek myth, Zeus will reach the same stature
through victory of the Titans, the children of the Earth Goddess,
Gaia. Even the God of the Hebrews, Yahweh, boasts to Job of his
victory over Leviathan - a serpent, the Bronze Age companion of
the Goddess. As Campbell (1964) puts it:

    ...the celestial orb to which the monarch is now likened is
    no longer the silvery moon, which dies and is resurrected and
    is light but also dark, but the golden sun, the blaze of
    which is eternal and before which shadows, demons, enemies
    and ambiguities take flight. The new age of the Sun God has
    dawned, and there is to follow an extremely interesting,
    mythologically confusing development (known as
    *solarization*), where the entire symbolic system of the
    earlier age is to be reversed, with the moon and the lunar
    bull assigned to the mythic sphere of the female, and the
    lion, the solar principle, to the male. (p. 75)

We see here the disturbing trend that would dominate Western
religion for the next several thousand years: the association of
the light with the Good and the dark with the Evil. In Persia,
Zoroastrianism would make this distinction explicit, depicting
the Universe as a battle-ground for Ahura Mazda and the forces of
light against Angra Mainyu, the spirit of death and decay. It is
but a short leap from here to Christianity.

===== Wicca and the Moon Injunction

This makes it hard to argue that Wicca's use of the lunar
principle to represent the feminine is a return to a pre-
patriarchical religion. Such associations cannot be traced very
far back into the history of mythology. The Wiccan injunction to
meet once a month by the full moon (to take one example) comes
from Doreen Valiente's Charge of the Goddess. But the Charge, in
turn, is based on an entry in Gerald Gardner's original "book of
shadows", "Ye Bok of ye Arts Magical". As Dearnaley (1999) makes
clear, Gardner lifted this injunction straight from Charles
Leland (1890):

    When I shall have departed from this world, Whenever ye have
    need of anything, Once in the month, and when the moon is
    full, Ye shall assemble in some desert place, Or in a forest
    all together...And ye shall all be freed from slavery, And so
    ye shall be free in everything; And as the sign that ye are
    truly free, Ye shall be naked in your rites, both men And
    women also...

In other words, the Charge comes from the mouth of Leland's
Aradia - and Aradia, a vengeful Goddess who taught the art of
poisoning against her "oppressors", takes as her inheritance the
"solarization" of the great Bronze Age myths.

===== Conclusion

The purpose of this essay is not to destroy anyone's cherished
beliefs, but rather to awaken people to creative alternatives.
Contrary to popular belief, the moon is not an "archetypal"
Goddess symbol. As C.G. Jung himself made clear, all symbols are
local; archetypes precede symbols, so there can be no such thing
as an "archetypal symbol".

Wiccans and other Witches who worship the Dark Goddess do so to
"take back the dark", assimilating into a single Deity both good
and evil, hope and fear, restoring the Goddess and God to the
ethical positions they possessed prior to Marduk and Ahura Mazda.
This is a noble, valid endeavor, and the moon serves as a
powerful symbol for this restoration.

But Pagans should be aware that there is power in the Goddess of
the Sun as well, and that their tradition may benefit from
worshiping the Goddess in this form, and exploring the God's role
as the dying and resurrected Moon. Still others may wish to
forego such associations altogether, and use the Moon as a symbol
for the gateway to the mysteries of the Universe. The cult of
Mithra used the moon for this purpose. Occult Qabalah
accomplishes the same thing by assigning the Moon to the
Yetziratic sphere of Yesod, the sphere directly above the
physical plane of Malkuth (Reed [1985], p. 63). [2] Once these
possibilities are embraced, a whole new world of spiritual
exploration bursts wide open.

===== Footnotes

[1] Wolkstein (1983) insinuates that 50 lost lines in the Hymn to
Inanna may have made this link explicit. Barring a new
archeological find, it appears these lines are lost forever.

[2] Frazer (1922) would take exception to this; he identified
Osiris as "the corn-god", as Osiris was sacrificed only once
yearly, and this better corresponds to the rise and fall of the
yearly crops. But the link between the kings of the hieratic
city-states and the moon is too strong and plentiful to be
ignored - even though these kings were sacrificed, not yearly,
but anywhere from seven to 12 years into their reign, depending
on the astrological phenomenon the priests used for auguring.

Frazer, of course, argues that Osiris is the corn God, because
his death occurred yearly - which parallels the rise and fall of
the year's corn yield. But most hieratic city-states did not
extinguish their kings after a single year, so arguing for such a
strict correspondence misses the point.

[3] Reed identifies Hathor as a Moon Goddess, and assigns her to
Yesod. While there may be lore associating Hathor with the Moon,
I have been unable to find it. Reed also classifies Osiris in
Tifareth, which she associates with the Sun. According to Frazer
(1922), only two ancient texts of any quality associate Osiris
with the Sun. Frazer goes so far as to declare that the evidence
for this linkage to be "minute in quantity and dubious, where it
is not absolutely worthless, in quality" (Chapter 42, para. 1).
Most mythologies describe the sun's setting as a form of rest or
hiding rather than a death.

===== References

Campbell, Joseph (1959). The Masks Of God: Primitive Mythology.
New York: Penguin Books.

Campbell, Joseph (1962). The Masks Of God: Oriental Mythology.
New York: Penguin Books.

Campbell, Joseph (1964). The Masks Of God: Occidental Mythology.
New York: Penguin Books.

Catshaman. Inanna New Moon Goddess. Online at

Dearnaley, Roger (1999). The Influence of Aleister Crowley upon
"Ye Bok of ye Art Magical". Online at

Frazer, Sir James George (1922). The Golden Bough. Online at

Graves, Robert (1948). The White Goddess. New York: Farrar,
Straus and Giroux.

Graves, Robert (1955). The Greek Myths, Vol. 1. England: Penguin
Books Ltd.

Husain, Sharukh (1997). The Goddess: An Illustrated Guide To The
Divine Feminine. London: Duncan Baird Publishers/One Spirit.
(Also available in the US from Little, Brown & Company.)

Leland, Charles (1890). Aradia: Gospel Of The Witches. Online at

MoonXscape. The Goddess and the Moon. Online at

Nabaraz, Payam. Mithras and Mithraism. Online at

Reed, Ellen Cannon (1985). The Witches' Qabalah. St. Paul:
Llewellyn Publications.

Starhawk (1989). The Spiral Dance. New York: Harper Collins

Wolkstein, Diane & Samuel Noah Kramer (1983). Inanna, Queen Of
Heaven And Earth: Her Stories And Myths From Sumer. New York:
Harper and Row, Publishers, Inc.

========= by Kelli LaVoy

Most of us are aware of candle magic, and a good many of us
practice it. We've read about the correspondences of colors,
astrological signs, essential oils, etc. However, I think there s
more than just symbolism to consider.

I always light a candle at dusk, to usher in the night. On my
late grandmother's birthday, I let a candle burn all day in honor
of her. Whenever I miss a traveling loved one, I light a candle
for their safe return.

We all have our own personal ceremonies. Candles are included in
many of mine. I try to make sure I always have many colors on
hand, for whatever situation or mood might take precedence, and I
don't usually follow what the candle magic books tell me. Yellow
symbolizes remembrance for me. I light a brown candle to feel
grounded and centered. I use green and blue candles to lift my
spirits and clear my mind.

I think the colors of candles, along with the scents of essential
oils and incenses, should be guided by your intuition. Most of
the books on this subject are good to use for guidelines, but I
think you should also consult your inner self, as your intuition
knows best.

========= An Announcement

Artist: Ovro
Title: Malice in Underland
Label: Some Place Else
Release date: October 2003
Catalogue number: SPECDR03030

Long-time The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum member (and author of
numerous articles for this newsletter) Faerie K. has ventured
into the world of making music. Her debut album, "Malice in
Underland" is now out, under the name Ovro.

Ovro employs microphones and computers to create her personal,
eerie microsoundscapes. Various source sounds, especially her
voice, are torn apart, bent, looped and transformed, and put
together again to form these magickal Ovrian soundscapes.

Ovro's sound is reminiscent of the so-called lowercase sound or
microwave in that it is minimal and subdued. She digs deep into
the waveforms and takes microscopic pieces for further
investigation, operation and amplification. The importance of
things usually passed unnoticed are magnified in great detail. A
crack in a wallpaper suddenly gets your complete attention in a
room otherwise familiar and cosy to you. It is mangled and
twisted and looped and looped and looped to have an altogether
new pattern decorating your walls. Then you find it's actually
the ceiling you're standing on, and all the furniture's missing
except for the sofa that is now the size of a matchbox.

That in itself is cool, but then there's the voice. Ovro calls it
Malice in Underland, another alter ego I suppose (layer upon
layer upon layer...). A slightly treated voice of a little girl
appears and tells me disturbing things. "I wish to die inside of
you." I find myself in the middle of a surrealist scene that I
cannot really make sense of but one thing I know.
It gives me the damned creeps. In a good way.

Besides Malice, other different personalities are introduced, and
they all seem to share a similar surrealist vocabulary. Ovro also
employs her "normal" voice as distant humming and wailing in
order to create a more ethereal, melancholic atmospheres wherever
found useful.

"Making music is a magickal process", says Faerie K. "First of
all, it involves invoking a whole new persona/self, one
expressing herself through sound. Second, the process of
transforming a source sound into something else, something new is
definitely alchemical in the traditional Solve & Coagula manner."

There is a definite magickal element present in the album, but
what it is - that's left for the listener to decipher.

More information on the album and how to order can be found at

============    COLUMNS

========= by TarotDeevah

=== Power of Flowers

by Isha Lerner
Illustrated by Karen Forkish
Published by US Games Systems, Inc.
Copyright 1999 by US Games Systems, Inc.
ISBN 157281196X
See Cards From This Deck:
Amazon Link:

Power of Flowers is not a tarot deck, rather "an archetypal
journey through nature" according to the cover. The deck consists
of 32 cards, each assigned a flower. The art is lovely, and the
little white book is very good. The booklet gives lots of
information about each flower. Although I don't use my deck, I
have used the little white booklet as a reference many times.

Cards measure 3.5 by 5 inches, which is rather large for me.
Card stock is very good, although it could be just a tiny bit
stiffer. The cards are durable and hold up very well.

I recommend this deck for anyone who loves flowers, and
especially for those who use flowers for healing and magickal
purposes. Collectors may also want a copy, depending upon whether
they also collect non-tarot divination decks.

=== Quick & Easy Tarot

Published by US Games Systems, Inc.
ISBN 1572812443
See Cards From This Deck:
Amazon Link:

This deck is identical to Rider-Waite in naming, order and
illustrations (although it has been recolored). On each card, a
paragraph of meanings are written, both on the upright and the
reversal. The idea is that beginners will not have to keep
looking up meanings in a book or booklet, since they are printed
on the cards. I've heard arguments for and against this practice,
but haven't an opinion one way or the other. This is not how I
learned, so I can't say whether it is beneficial or detrimental.

The cards are about 2.75 by 4.75 inches and handle well. The
stock is durable and will stand up to repeated use.

I can't really recommend or not recommend this deck for
beginners. Some say it makes for a lazy reader. I can't say for
sure. I don't recommend the deck for more advanced readers,
simply because the printed meanings will be distracting.
Collectors may want to add it to their collection, as I have

=== Renaissance Tarot

by Brian Williams
Published by US Games Systems, Inc.
Copyright 1987 by US Games Systems, Inc.
ISBN 0880793074
See Cards From This Deck:
Amazon Link:

Renaissance Tarot is a beautiful deck ... very rich with lots of
guilding, which I like. The colors are rather muted and very
calm. Symbolism is adequate, although not plentiful. Titles are
in both Italian (I think that's Italian) and English.

The deck follows Marseilles style more than Rider-Waite, although
the pips are slightly illustrated ... only slightly. La Giustizia
(Justice) is VIII and la Forza (Strength) is XI. The Wheel of
Fortune is Chance and Judgment is the Angel. Suits are staves,
cups, swords and coins. Court cards are king, queen, knight and

The cards measure about 2.75 by 5 inches and are of durable
stock. I find them a bit large for me, but that's a matter of
taste. The deck is of a very good quality, and none of the
guilding should come off, even with heavy use.

I recommend this deck for intermediate and above readers, for
collectors and those who prefer the Tarot de Marseilles style. I
would recommend the deck for beginners, except that the
illustrations (what illustrations there are) in the pips reveal
little of the meaning of the card.

=== The Rider Tarot (Rider-Waite Tarot)

by Pamela Coleman Smith under Arthur Edward Waite
Published by US Games Systems, Inc.
Copyright 1971 by US Games Systems, Inc.
ISBN 091386613X
See Cards From This Deck:
Amazon Link:

How does one critique the American standard? I really don't know
how. This deck obviously follows the Rider-Waite style ... in
fact, it invented it. All cards, including the pips, are
illustrated. This is the first deck to do so. Strength, which was
always 11 until this point, has been changed/corrected to 8; and
Justice, which had always been 8 until this point, has been
changed/corrected to 11. Waite believed that Strength corresponds
with Leo (the lion), thus #8, and Justice corresponds with Libra
(the scales), thus #11. It annoys me that this deck is called the
Rider Tarot or the Rider-Waite Tarot, and not the Rider-Waite-
Smith Tarot, as Smith deserves just as much credit, in my
opinion. Symbolism is abundant and on multiple levels/layers
throughout this deck. I do find the illustrations rather
cartoonish, though.

The cards measure about 2.75 by 4.75 inches, which is slighlty
large for my taste. They handle rather well, nonetheless. The
card stock is very durable, but easily managed as well. Many a
Rider Deck has held up over countless shuffles.

I recommend this deck to anyone and everyone. In fact, I think
everyone should own this deck (as well as a Tarot de Marseilles
deck). Of course, I own over 100 decks, so ... Beginners would do
very well to start off with this deck. The majority of American
tarot books use this deck as their pattern. Collectors must have
this deck due to its historical significance, in my opinion.

===== About This Column

TarotDeevah's column will feature monthly articles or reviews
selected from her web site or written for this newsletter.
You can find TarotDeevah's web site at:

========= Humor by Author Unknown

The Perfect High Priestess' circles are always on time, and run
exactly 20 minutes. She is deeply devoted to her tutelary goddess
and god, but never belittles other people's gods, not even the
Sacred Sky Bunny. She works from 6 a.m. until midnight, and is
also sweeps up after circle and carries out the garbage.

The Perfect High Priestess excels in a demanding professional
career, and donates all her time to community concerns. She came
from humble origins and is always happy for a crust of bread,
rind of cheese, or a place on your sofa while she is on lavish
book tours for her publisher, Harper Collins.

She has a big comfortable home which she always makes available
to the community, and spends most of her time in study and
personal work. She is quiet and unpretentious, she blends into
the background, and her experience and power are apparent to
anyone who meets her. She cares nothing for appearances, wears
good clothes, drives a good car, buys and loans out good books,
and donates candles, altar cloths and incense to the coven. She
is 29 years old and has many years of experience in several
previous lives as a High Priestess in Ancient Egypt, Ireland, and
Northern Italy.

Above all, she is beautiful and of course she is female.

The Perfect High Priestess has a burning desire to work with
novices, and she spends most of her time with an authentic
traditional coven.

Her coven, which upholds the old customs of secrecy, is known and
respected on several continents. She can be trusted with any
private confidence, and is a generous font of knowledge, on
procedures, people and the gossip of the Craft dating back to
when Gerald was just back from Burma.

She smiles all the time with a straight face because she has a
sense of humor that keeps her seriously dedicated to her craft.
She always attends local coffee cauldrons, festivals and
workshops, and is always by the phone to be handy when needed.

Unfortunately, the Perfect High Priestess is always in another

If your High Priestess does not measure up, simply send this
notice to six other cities that are tired of their High
Priestess, too. Then bundle up your High Priestess and send her
to the city at the top of your list. If everyone cooperates, in
one week you will receive 1,643 High Priestesses.

One of them should be perfect.

Have faith in this letter. Don't break the chain! One Pagan
community broke the chain and got its old High Priestess back in
less than three months, along with Lance Spearshaft, a new lover
she picked up in Vegas. Lance proceeded to beguile several women
in community before running off with their BoS's, $827 in IOU's,
and the coven Maiden.

Don't let it happen to you!

========= By Randall Sapphire

Polls on The Cauldron's message board show that MSN Messenger is
the most popular instant messenger client among Cauldron members.
So we'll launch this column with a free add-on to MSN Messenger
(hereafter referred to as MSNM) versions 5 and 6 that greatly
expands it base program's features: Messenger Plus!

Messenger Plus integrates into MSNM adding a new "Plus" menu and
new items to regular MSNM menus with many new features. Here are
just some of the features of Messenger Plus! adds:

* Various MSN Messenger Tweaks (e.g. Hide the ad)
* Automatic Chat Logging (Logs can be encrypted)
* Personalized and Custom Statuses
* Rename Contacts on contact list
* IRC-style commands available in chat
* Multi-color and formatted text
* Quick Emotions Panel
* Individual Sign-in/Sign-Out Sounds for contacts
* Sound "Emoticons"
* Lock MSNM while you are away from your computer
* Full Contact Manager
* Event Logging
* Quick text macros
* Pop Email Checking
* Text recall in chat
* Use special tags to send variable info in messages
* Scheduler

As I write this, the current version of Messenger Plus is 2.51.
The installer is about a 2.6 meg download.

There is one thing to watch for when you install this program.
The author makes money to support the Messenger Plus! web site
and development by installing OPTIONAL (but annoying) adware with
the program. The adware is completely optional, however, and you
can opt out of installing it by unchecking a box when the
installer tells you about the adware. If you leave the box
checked, the adware is installed. However, if you forget to
uncheck the box, you can remove the adware completely by
uninstalling Messenger Plus! from Add/Remove Software. You can
then reinstall it, remembering to check the box.

If you use MSNM, you will love Messenger Plus! -- if for no other
reason than it lets you remove the MSNM ad! You can read more
about it and download it at:



Corporate America (and many large non-profits) keep a small army
of publicists busy writing copyright-free articles that busy
newspaper and newsletter editors can use in their publications.
Many are nothing but shill worthy only of a cartoon version of
used car salesman. Others contain useful information with only a
subtle plug. Your editor has found a good online source for these
and will be including a few that he feels may be of interest to
Cauldron and Candle readers in issues of this newsletter.
Remember that publication of an article in this newsletter is not
an endorsement of the authors' position or any products and
companies mentioned therein.

========= Fill'er Up with Cornstalks, Please

The next time you drive past a cornfield or wheat field, think 50
billion gallons per year of ethanol. That's the fuel potential
locked within the nation's agriculture and municipal wastes such
as stalks and husks (corn stover), wheat straw, rice hulls,
leaves, grass, and paper according to Burrill & Co., a San
Francisco-based life sciences merchant bank.

The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that 10 to 15 billion
gallons of ethanol could be produced using only corn stover and
wheat straw.

The general term for these vast agricultural resources is

There's an economic incentive for unlocking this fuel source.
Using just 30 percent of the available corn stover as feedstock
for "biorefineries" adds $3 billion to the farmer's annual net

More work needs to be done before farmers can profit from
harvesting two crops in every field-a food crop and a biomass
crop for energy production.

The Energy Future Coalition, a Washington-based non-governmental
organization, urges the Defense Department to fund a competition
of biorefinery technologies that will put biomass from all
sources into the nation's gas tank.

Brent Erickson, who chairs the Coalition's Bioenergy and
Agriculture Working Group, says the goal of researchers in
biotech companies is to find and develop new biotech enzymes that
break up the cellulose-the tough cell-wall substance that gives
plants their rigidity-and convert it to sugars. Sugar is the raw
materials for making ethanol and a host of other biobased

"This is research based on a new technology called industrial
biotechnology," he says.

"Cracking cellulose would be the Permian Basin oil strike of the
21st century," Erickson says. "The environmental, political, and
economic benefits of this technology are incredible: cleaner-
burning fuel and bio-degradable materials, replacement of a
limited resource (petroleum) with renewable biomass resources,
less reliance on foreign suppliers of petroleum, and a new outlet
for agricultural production."

Since almost any plant material can serve as a raw material for
biorefining, the technology has the potential to bring economic
benefits to all 50 states.

Unfortunately, some corn farmers and commodity groups continue to
focus advocacy efforts on older ethanol processing technologies
that only use the grains, Erickson explains. "Improving our self-
sufficiency in transportation energy calls for farmers, refiners,
and policy makers to recognize the fuel potential locked in all
forms of biomass," he says. "Only then can they make a more
substantial contribution to our farm economy and energy security
in the near term.

"The renewable fuel mandate is a good first step but Congress and
the Administration should take steps recommended by the Energy
Future Coalition," Erickson says. "This will ensure that our
energy policy doesn't leave farmers, refiners, and consumers with
a tank that is only half full."

Further information on the fuel potential of biomass is found
under the Bioenergy and Agriculture icon at
http://www.energyfuturecoalition.org/ or the industrial and
environmental icon of the Biotechnology Industry Organization
(BIO) at http://www.bio.org/.

========= Chemical Safety In Your Home

Household products are designed with safety in mind, but it's a
smart idea to learn more about the safest ways to use and dispose
of them.

According to The Chemical Educational Foundation, the following
safety guidelines may help people protect their families and the

* Love your labels - Read and follow label directions on how to
  use, store and dispose of a substance.

* Plan your purchases - Buy the right amount of a product to
  prevent waste.

* Store properly - Keep products in their original container and
  store them securely, out of reach of children and pets.

* Handle properly - Never mix household chemicals together, the
  effects can be toxic.

* Proper disposal and recycling - Never pour household chemicals
  on the ground or down a storm drain. Recycle what you can.

Special disposal and recycling programs may exist for the
following products:

Automotive products, aerosol containers, paints and coatings,
pesticides and fertilizers, and household batteries.

Find out whether or not your community has a household hazardous
waste collection program. You may need to either schedule a
special pick up or take items to a designated site. Check what
your community's program will accept for recycling. If you cannot
find a household hazardous waste collection program, call the
manufacturer for recycling or disposal recommendations.

To learn more about household chemical safety or to receive a
copy of Solutions-Chemicals in Your Home, call 703/527-6223 or
visit http://www.chemed.org/.

========= Art Of Creating Sweet & Simple Spa Treatments at Home

Few can resist the inner and outer glow produced by a trip to the
spa. The soothing, pure powers of honey, used in beauty
treatments since the time of Cleopatra, make it easy to bypass
expensive trips to the spa and indulge in economical and all-
natural pre- and post-workout treats at home.

The natural hydrating properties of honey make it an ideal
moisturizing ingredient in skin and hair care products. Honey
also contains antioxidants, which have been known to protect skin
from the damage of UV rays as well as aid in skin rejuvenation.

Recipes featuring honey have long been a staple of healthful
diets, with recent studies suggesting that the glucose and
fructose in honey can help enhance athletic performance.

Following are two recipes from the "Sweet and Simple Spa Moments"
brochure, created by the National Honey Board. The brochure
features recipes for at-home spa treatments as well as spa-
inspired cuisine. To request a free brochure, call 888-421-2977
and press 5.

For more information on the many beauty and possible health
benefits of honey, and other tasty, healthful menu ideas, log
onto http://www.honey.com/.

8 whole unblanched almonds
2 Tbsp. rolled oats, uncooked
1 Tbsp. honey
2 tsp. yogurt, sour cream or lightly beaten egg white

Process almonds and oats in a blender until finely ground. In a
small bowl, mix ground almonds and oats, honey and yogurt until
blended. Pat scrub on face and neck; leave on for up to 10
minutes for extra softening. Wet hands and massage gently to
exfoliate. Rinse off. Makes enough for one scrub.

11/2 cups frozen strawberries
1 large kiwi, peeled
1 container (8 oz.) low-fat vanilla yogurt
2 Tbsp. honey
10 ice cubes

In a blender or food processor, combine all ingredients and
process until smooth. Serve immediately. Makes 2 servings (1 1/2
cups each).

========= Tips To Make Kids More Nice Than Naughty

It's easy for people to get caught up in the retail rush and
marketing madness of the holiday season. Parking lots fill up and
checkout lines wrap through department store aisles. Children
make gift wish lists and their parents scramble to purchase toys
before they disappear from the shelves.

Considering all the yuletide lunacy, sidestepping Santa and his
ringing bell on the corner or overlooking the toy drive box can
become second nature. And for kids, these charitable
opportunities can slip by completely unnoticed unless their
parents explain the importance of philanthropy and include them
in the giving process.

Here are a few tips that can make holiday charity more fun than
anything else on your family's "to do" list:

* Spare Change Challenge: The Salvation Army Santas have been
  ringing bells on street corners every December since the 1890s.
  This year, challenge your kids to contribute a portion of their
  allowance to every Salvation Army Santa they see. Ask them to
  keep track of their donations, and at the end of the holidays,
  reward them with a "humanitarian" prize.

* Point-and-Click Donation: Ever think huddling around the
  computer participating in bidding wars could be just the thing
  to further family bonding? Several charities are now holding
  online auctions to benefit their cause-offering tech-savvy
  families a point-and-click alternative to traditional gift
  giving. Embassy Suites' "Starry Nights" fund-raiser is in its
  second year raising money for the Starlight Children's
  Foundation. Celebrity-decorated ornaments by stars such as
  Faith Hill, Brooke Shields and Derek Fisher will be sold at
  http://www.ebay.com/starlight December 1-11. Best of all, 100
  percent of the proceeds benefit Starlight.

  For more information about the Starlight Children's Foundation
  and "Embassy Suites' Starry Nights," visit

* Toy Debate: For more than 50 years, the U.S. Marine Corps has
  orchestrated the Toys for Tots program, donating millions of
  toys each year to needy children. As a family project this
  year, urge your kids to research the perfect toy(s) to purchase
  for the program. If you have more than one child and there is a
  disagreement, let them present evidence about why their
  selection is the best. Then let a "toy jury" decide the

* Food Adventure: Contributing to a food bank is also a simple\
  way to help around the holidays. Treat this effort as a
  scavenger hunt. Hide canned goods around the house, and give
  clues to help your kids find each "treasure." Then take a day
  trip to the food bank with the canned goods, and arrange for
  your kids to see how the organization operates. Most
  establishments will be glad to explain the process to

* Friends Field Trip: Helping a charity during the holidays (or
  any other time) doesn't necessarily require money. Many
  hospitals and nursing homes-as well as soup kitchens and
  shelters-are more than happy to have parent/kid volunteers. You
  can also recruit a few other parents and kids to make the
  volunteer time a group, neighborhood or community activity.

So this holiday season, when you're making a list and checking it
twice, add in some time to show your kids how simple it is to
help a good cause. They might not fully grasp "goodwill toward
men," but some kids will understand philanthropy if they think a
man in a red suit knows when they've been bad or good.

========= Feeling Safe: What Girls Say, What Adults Can Do

What makes girls feel safe? Why does feeling safe matter? How
does feeling unsafe impact the quality of girls' lives? These are
the main questions explored in a new study by the Girl Scout
Research Institute (GSRI), in conjunction with Harris
Interactive, Inc.

According to Feeling Safe: What Girls Say, girls who feel less
safe are more likely to long for attention, be sad, make poor
decisions and fare worse in school.

The findings of the study demonstrate that feeling emotionally
safe for girls is as important as being physically safe-and
threats to feelings of safety may negatively impact the overall
quality of their lives. Girls who feel unsafe have trouble paying
attention in school, making decisions, forming friendships,
obtaining social support and do not feel as competent as girls
who feel safe.

In the study, girls expressed a strong need for safety and the
desire to discuss real-life issues with trusted peers and adults.
While adults consider safety in physical terms, many girls in the
study considered it more in emotional terms-especially in their
every day lives. Girls said that trusting, positive relationships
are what make them feel safe and secure. Yet research also found
that almost 25 percent of girls do not know three adults they can
go to for support.

The more adults know about how girls perceive safety, the better
they will be able to help them develop effective strategies for
coping with emotionally and/or physically dangerous situations.
With this in mind, the report offers the following suggestions
for adults working with girls:

* Be proactive about asking how girls feel, even if they are
  reluctant to talk. Don't assume to know what they consider
  important, and don't expect them to automatically share their
  concerns with parents or other adults.

* Encourage working together to establish guidelines for
  responsible behavior. Do not judge, threaten, lecture, issue
  orders, and/or try to "teach girls a lesson" by withholding

* Realize that a safe location is not enough. Trusted
  relationships, in which girls feel valued and supported, are
  what make girls feel emotionally safe.

* Take emotional harm seriously. Typical environments, such as
  classrooms, sports fields, or group meetings, often create
  situations that cause girls anxiety. Hurtful teasing, gossiping
  and name-calling should be addressed by adults and girls

* Make safety a shared goal-one girls don't have to deal with
  alone. For example, adults in Girl Scouting, including STUDIO
  2Bsm, need to partner with girls and encourage them to share
  their real-life concerns.

========= Cauldron Info

The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum was founded in December 1997 to
provide a friendly but serious discussion area for Pagans on the
Internet. We've grown a bit over the years. We now have an active
message area, a large web site with around 700 pages of
information (including over 250 book and divination deck
reviews), and a monthly email newsletter. To continue to provide
and expand these services, The Cauldron needs lots of volunteer
help from our members and supporters.

Here are some of the things members and supporters can do to help
The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum thrive:

===== Actively Participate In Our Message Board

While our Delphi message board welcomes readers, we encourage
members to actively participate by posting their comments and
views in our discussions. One of the easiest ways to help The
Cauldron is to actively participate in our message board. The
staff especially appreciates members who start new topics for
discussion based on their own questions, opinions, or interests.


===== Articles! Essays! Tutorials!

We are in constant need of original, well-written and accurate
articles, essays, tutorials, and other written items for both our
web site and for our Cauldron and Candle newsletter. There's no
real limit on length for web site articles. Here are a few areas
in which we always need articles:

* information on the beliefs and theology of the various Pagan
  religions, especially non-Wiccan religions

* information on holidays and festivals of the various Pagan
  religions, especially non-Wiccan religions

* recipes for oils, incenses, and food for the various Pagan

* magick, spells, and ritual information

* herbal information

* positive articles on dealing with other faiths

* information on historical pagan cultures

* editorial/opinion pieces

Non-Wiccan material is stressed not because we don't want Wiccan
material but because good non-Wiccan material has been hard to
find. We have a web form you can use to submit an article for
consideration: http://www.ecauldron.com/persontestart.php

===== Book Reviews

While The Cauldron receives some review copies from a couple of
Pagan publishers, there are many books that can only be reviewed
on our web site if a member has a copy and writes a good,
objective review. The Cauldron is interested in reviews on the
more academic books used by reconstructionist Pagan religions as
well as on the books one finds on the Pagan/New Age shelf in the
bookstore. We have a web form you can use to submit a book review
for consideration: http://www.ecauldron.com/persontestbr.php

===== Graphic Assistance

The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum is purposely a low graphics site as
we value page download speed over flashy graphics. However, we
are always willing to talk with artists who have ideas for
well-designed small graphics (small in both physical dimensions
and file size) that might enhance a specific article or page.

===== Invite Your Friends

If you have friends or acquaintances who you believe would find
The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum useful, please tell them about our
site. If you are active in our message board and have friends who
might enjoy them or have information to contribute, please invite

===== Link To The Cauldron

If you have a web site where linking to The Cauldron: A Pagan
Forum would be appropriate, simply providing a link to this web
site is a big help. Our Link to this Site page explains how you
can do this if you need help or want some simple graphic buttons
to use: http://www.ecauldron.com/linktous.php

===== Donations

As The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum uses as many free services as
possible, our need for money to operate our site is currently
lower than our need for the many items we list above. However, if
you have a few dollars to spare, we would be honored to have your
help in paying for our web site. You can donate by using either
PayPal or the Amazon Honor System links below (we get about 85%
of what you donate).

Donate via PayPal
Donate via Amazon.com

===== Amazon Purchases

The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum also receives a small percentage
(usually 5%) from most items purchased from Amazon.com when you
go to Amazon.com from one of the links to Amazon on our web site.
If you purchase a lot of books, CDs, and other items from
Amazon.com as many members do, going to Amazon.com through one of
our links when you are going to make a purchase there is a
painless way to help fund this web site.


===== Have Questions or Suggestions?

If you have specific questions, proposals or other ideas we
haven't mentioned here, please email them to
rssapphire00@ecauldron.GETRIDOFEME.com. (Unfortunately, Randall
has to answer general "Tell me more?" type questions with a
request for a more specific question. He's not trying to be rude,
he just can't think of anything general and useful to say that
isn't said here.)

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

Cauldron and Candle is a free publication of The Cauldron: A
Pagan Forum. The Cauldron intends to publish this newsletter once
a month and often actually succeeds in doing so. We tried to
publish it twice a month for a while, but real life interfered
too often.

This issue of Cauldron and Candle as a whole is copyright (c)
2003 by The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum. Copyrights on individual
items in this newsletter are retained by their author, please
contact the editors if you need to contact an author for
permission to reprint an article and the editors will do their
best to put you in touch with him or her. The opinions expressed
herein are those of the individual authors and do not necessarily
reflect the views of newsletter, The Cauldron: A Pagan Forum, or
its staff. Publication of an article in this newsletter is not an
endorsement of the authors position or any products and companies
mentioned therein. No one involved in producing this newsletter
has any money to speak of so suing us if you don't like something
we do is a waste of time and money.


You are receiving a copy of this newsletter because you signed up
to receive it. You can subscribe or unsubscribe to this
newsletter via your web browser at:


Or you can unsubscribe via email by sending a blank message to


Be sure to send this message from the email account actually
subscribed to the newsletter. If you have trouble unsubscribing
by email, please use the web browser method mentioned above.

If you need to change your subscription to a new email address,
unsubscribe your old email address and subscribe your new email
address. Note that you have to make these changes yourself. Yahoo
Groups does not allow the list owner to make them for you.


The Cauldron and Candle web site contains information on this
newsletter and an archive of back issues.



If you have Pagan friends who you believe would be interested in
Cauldron and Candle please invite them to subscribe. You can
either drop them a note yourself or -- better yet -- send them
one of The Cauldron's email postcards with the information.

You are also welcome to forward a copies of this newsletter to
interested friends and associates provided you forward the entire


Don't forget that your suggestions for this newsletter are always
welcome, either posted on the message board or via email to
LyricFox (lyricfox@ecauldron.GETRIDOFME.com) or Randall Sapphire
(rssapphire00@ecauldron.GETRIDOFME.com). Typos are, as usual,
courtesy of the Goddess Eris.

Return to Cauldron and Candle Archive

Top | Home | Message Board | Site Info & Rules | Report Site Problems
Thanks to Cauldron Sponsors
(Sponsor The Cauldron!)

Cheap Web Hosting Report | Pagan & Magick Supplies
Witchcraft Course
Download Hundreds of Magic Spells