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Thread: Books: traditional vrs wicca, help?

  1. #1
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    Books: traditional vrs wicca, help?

    Does anyone know of a good book(s) that is more traditional witchcraft vrs wicca or any books other then Llewellyn published. I have read mostly Llewellyn published books and find then how do I say repetitive, looking for something different. I'm still in the discover and research stage not really practicing yet

    Melissa
    Merry Meet

  2. #2
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    what kind of path are you leaning toward? what pantheon do you feel closest to? mine's the egyptian pantheon, and right now i'm reading "the sacred tradition in ancient egypt." just search for books on the roots of your path. if you're interested in celtic witchcraft, look for books on celtic wisdom. you know why there's no wicca 201 books? because once you find the basics of wicca, all you can do to advance is to research the roots of wicca - shamanism, ceremonial magick, qabala, green witchcraft, mythology, philosophy, runes, tarot, eastern mysticism, etc... hope this helps. when i first heard someone describe it this way, it was like a lightbulb came on in my head.
    Let us be silent that we may hear the whispers of the gods. - Ralph Waldo Emerson

  3. #3
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    Read work by Buckland, Gardner, Valiente, Fortune, and the Farrars. Go back to older books such as Buckland's Complete Book of Witchcraft, The Witch's Bible Compleat (the Farrars), Witchcraft for Tomorrow (Doreen Valiente), Drawing Down the Moon (Margot Adler), and so on. These folks were around when Wicca was still more traditional then eclectic, and their books thus will provide a better representation of that then the books now. Though they aren't Wiccan, you might also delve into the subjects that contributed to Wicca in it's infancy - look at work by Crowley, the Kybalion, and in subjects such as alchemy, Qabalah, tarot, and paths such as Thelema, Hermeticism, Buddhism, and Kemeticism.

    And incidentally, I think you have a great idea. I read many "modern" Wiccan books and didn't connect to Wicca as well as I did when I read the older ones that were more traditional so to speak. Of course one still needs to be in a coven to belong to a tradition, but these books allow you to be a solitary and get closer to traditional Wicca even so.

    Outside of older books and authors, get Amber Laine Fisher's Philosophy of Wicca - it's an excellent modern book with in depth discussion of Wiccan philosophies and one of my favourites. I've heard Elements of Ritual by Deborah Lipp is another modern book that is excellent and in depth.
    Last edited by Rain Gnosis; August 20th, 2003 at 11:14 AM.

  4. #4
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    Here are my suggestions. Keep in mind that anything you read should be taken with a grain of skeptical salt. Llewellyn isn't the only publisher that puts out books that have some rather questionable claims in them (in particular when it comes to the history of Wicca or modern witchcraft.)

    Anything by Marian Green (she presents mostly a solitary witchcraft path... I believe she doesn't consider herself to be Wiccan.)

    Paul Huson's "Mastering Witchcraft" (but be aware he presents a witchcraft that tends to be drawn from things like Margaret Murray's discredited theories, and what many people might consider "negative" stuff.)

    Gwyn's "Light from the Shadows: A Mythos of Traditional Witchcraft" (a newer book on non-Gardnerian-derived witchcraft.)

    Doreen Valiente and Evan Jones' "Witchcraft: A Tradition Renewed." (This is a presentation of the witchcraft tradition promoted by the late Robert Cochrane. Evan John Jones has other books out on this particular tradition including "The Roebuck in the Thicket" which I just picked up myself the other day and have started to read. Very interesting. Evan John Jones also wrote, with Chas S. Clifton, "Sacred Mask, Sacred Dance" which focusses more on mask work in ritual, but again has info on the Cochrane tradition too.)

    If you haven't read Janet and Stewart Farrar's books (in particular their "Witches Bible") you should check them out too.

    For lots of excellent historical material on how ancient magick was practiced, I can't recommend Hans Dieter Betz's "The Greek Magical Papyri in Translation" nearly enough. It's a collection of English translations of magical spells, prayers, invocations, etc. from way back, some from papyri dating back into the BCE era. Lots of inspiration there.

    You might find Ellen Cannon Reed's "The Heart of Wicca" of interest. I have a lot of problems with this particular book, as the author makes a lot of claims and assumptions which I'm not sure hold up to scrutiny, but I'm told it does represent the more "traditional" Wiccan viewpoint well.

    And finally, while I know you've said you've already read a lot of Llewellyn stuff, you might find Raven Grimassi's books to be of interest. He presents a more "traditional" approach, closer to what Gardner presented in his books than some books on Wicca, but again he makes a lot of questionable claims (in particular with regards to history.)

    I'm sure if I do a bit more research, I could come up with even more suggestions. But these should keep you busy for a while, and most of these books and authors are pretty easy to find in stores or on Amazon.com/Amazon.co.uk/Amazon.ca.

    Ben Gruagach
    MysticWicks forum guide in "Paths: Wicca", "Books" and "History"
    author of The Wiccan Mystic: Exploring a Magickal Spiritual Path
    visit my website at http://www.witchgrotto.com
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  5. #5
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    Thanks you all gave me great ideas and a lot of books to look into. As for the path I'm leaning towards I'm still not sure, wicca seams to lose of a religion for me but everything I read seems to be wicca this wicca that It's hard to differentiate between anything else.

    Melissa
    Merry Meet

  6. #6
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    Yep, you'll find that with a lot of the more modern stuff out there. The older books tend to have a stricter view of what is Wiccan.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rain Gnosis
    Buckland's Complete Book of Witchcraft,
    Hey, something Marchosias has actually read!

    Thats a pretty neat book, easily readable with a coherant layout.

    9 out of 10 Satanists agree, BCBoW is the book to read!

    To expect the worst is to never have an unpleasant surprise.


    Men often mistake the strength of their emotion for the strength of their argument.

    The heated mind resents the chill touch and relentless scrutiny of logic.

    I am... <a href="http://www.imood.com/users/Marchosias"><img src="http://moods.imood.com/display/uname=Marchosias/fg=FFFFFF/bg=330066/imood.gif" alt="The current mood of Marchosias" border="0"></a>

  8. #8
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    Yeah, it's definitely a workbook. Some people find it a bit dry, though I think it's a worthwhile one. I find the Farrars' Bible Compleat to be heavy too but it's also one I'd consider an essential.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rain Gnosis
    Yeah, it's definitely a workbook. Some people find it a bit dry, though I think it's a worthwhile one. I find the Farrars' Bible Compleat to be heavy too but it's also one I'd consider an essential.
    Yeah, I can certainly see how it can be dry. Then again, if you are interested in the subject, new information is always juicy.

    EDIT: 400th post!

    (I honestly do NOT see how you people have them in the thousands. )
    Last edited by Marchosias; August 21st, 2003 at 01:26 AM.

    To expect the worst is to never have an unpleasant surprise.


    Men often mistake the strength of their emotion for the strength of their argument.

    The heated mind resents the chill touch and relentless scrutiny of logic.

    I am... <a href="http://www.imood.com/users/Marchosias"><img src="http://moods.imood.com/display/uname=Marchosias/fg=FFFFFF/bg=330066/imood.gif" alt="The current mood of Marchosias" border="0"></a>

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marchosias
    (I honestly do NOT see how you people have them in the thousands. )
    I have a big mouth.

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