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Gerald Gardner (1884–1964)

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15+ obres 1,028 Membres 8 Ressenyes 4 preferits

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Nota de desambiguació:

(eng) also published under the pen name of Scire

Obres de Gerald Gardner

Obres associades

The Paganism Reader (2004) — Col·laborador — 64 exemplars
The Magicians: Occult Stories (1972) — Col·laborador — 18 exemplars


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Incidentally, the cover of my edition is kind of ridiculous; a ‘central text of Wicca’ is a bit saying, The place where I herd my cats together, you know. But anyway.

Historians/rationalists (it’s my job to say no…. No!…. Noooooes!) like to criticize Gerald for not being a time traveler (and, let’s face it: for not being a chemist), you know, but: so the Gardnerian craft isn’t unaffected by the esotericism of Christians and secular people; I say—so what? Just as there’s never been a ‘pure’ race separated from the blood of other races, there’s never been a ‘pure’ religion or philosophy, without some of their rivals’ ideas swishing about, you know.

And there’s never been a religion that doesn’t change, and there’s not much worse than to try to force what can’t be, basically.

That said, it is a little tool-heavy or ornate, and makes real demands on one’s ability to provide privacy for oneself, you know, (nine feet is a lot of space to have for oneself where I am; actually the six feet for a circle from the newer books is a lot, too), and the occasional dramatic-symphonic references to history, are probably a little overdone, although certainly a little sermon on the necessity of prudence in an unjust, unfeeling-and-unreasonable, world is called-for, you know…. But basically, it’s not at all a blueprint for my practice, for a bunch of reasons (different circumstances/different personality/1961 and years immediately before it was a while ago now, etc.), but it was cheap, and I’m reading the digitized old books because they’re cheap, and because they’re curious, and I’m glad I have this.

…. Pretty much any group practice is unusual nowadays, you know. Doesn’t make it wrong. I don’t know. Really it is nice to invent your own religion, though.

…. Some of it does sound hard of initiation, like somebody would muck it up, but on the other hand, it doesn’t sound pretty too, like things are desired for themselves, ‘pale or purple’, and not just because they were done of old time, you know.

I have never known it, but it IS something Different, you know.

…. It is a little unusual, of course.

The other striking feature is that, although this isn’t absolutely so, the rituals are largely social (communal) in nature, rather than psychological (results-seeking) in nature, you know. It’s not exactly witchtok, you know. (Not that I’m primarily a TikTok person, of course.)

…. It sounds like I wouldn’t really like being a Gardnerian. That said, I can’t help but wonder how much of that is societal conditioning: only seeing the bad in things, gossiping, science-gossip-on-religions, it’s-newsworthy-if-it’s-bad-because-things-are-bad, etc.

But it’s not something I have to experience, obviously.

…. It is kinda marked by its time—‘gentle’ goddesses and ‘great’ gods and a little humbug here and there along those lines—but Wicca and magical religions aren’t scriptural or set in stone, not based on the idea that truth was discovered at a discrete moment in historical time, and needs to be preserved unchanged, right. There are certainly more creative/innovative threads and others less so, of course, but I don’t know if there are Defenders of the Faith in the same way, right. I’m sure there could be individuals with prejudices, of course.

But in general I’d find even the old Gardnerian craft to be a curious marriage of the physical and the spiritual (concentration/mental focus/intent with laughing and playing with your friends), which is a wonderful thing to attempt, since that is what we are: a marriage of the fleshy and the heavenly, you know.

…. There’s Internet freedom today to talk about witchcraft online, and there’s legal freedom in that the government can’t burn your house down and roast you like a pig for believing in magical religion, and the ‘Old Laws’ portray how much things have changed since the old days, although it obviously still isn’t prudent, or socially safe, to talk about Wicca or anything like it to the majority of people, you know. Lots of superstitious people, superstitious, aggressive Christians, angry reactionaries, and hate-filled sorts…. It’s not socially safe to be known as a witch in most situations. We’re still working on getting there. At least they can’t butcher us and roast us over an open fire, you know.

…. (Chris Christian’s review) Well, I certainly am embarrassed to acknowledge that the church murdered people because they were witches or whatever; anything associated with me should be ~perfect~ and murdering people is not perfect…. (wipes snot with sleeve) But what I don’t like about the situation today is, that we’re losing control. You’ve got to really crush the little brownies and leprechauns, if you want control, and today’s Christians don’t get that, half the time….

~ Beauty and freedom, children. Beauty and freedom.

…. Note: I’m pretty sure this is the book where it has the line—all caps—‘drugs will come to you’, right: when you’re burning up with your love of the Old Gods, right: or maybe it’s that Jesus’ friends are lighting you up like a torch, right; ({hands} Jesus seemed to have such potential: where did he go wrong? {downcast Constance}) {now THAT is a FUN, auto-‘correct’: that is Staying, lol}—and it wasn’t a huge number of deaths, numerically speaking, even compared to a smaller European population in those centuries, right: but sometimes tyrants do have a certain wily-ness to them, right—an ounce of violence can have a pound of influence, you know~ it’s almost like the Northern Ireland episode, right; only a few thousand people died in Belfast and Derry and Armagh, and all those places, but it was a huge background anxiety for the whole society for literally thirty years, right….

But yeah—‘drugs will come to you’. I think it’s possible, in terms of my mind, and in terms of my belief, I believe it, right. In ACA meetings—a sort of 12-Step meetings—they used to (ie, ‘they used to’ in terms of my personal history: they still do, really) talk about, I think they called it the, ‘internal drug store’ or ‘internal medicine store’, or something like that: always as a, well, a criticism, basically, it was 12-Step purity/puritanism: and not that that is never helpful, it certainly keeps some people alive and even out of trouble that otherwise wouldn’t be, right; although I do think it has the tendency to be overly critical of the human organism—overly weakness-oriented…. But yeah, apart from the interpretation, I think that the ‘internal drug store’ metaphor is completely accurate/understanding: when you’re having an adult child reaction, or whatever it is, your anxiety or your perfectionism or irritation or whatever it is—it’s like your brain is producing chemicals and that’s how you have a reaction, right. I don’t believe in the hard-materialism thing: your brain is producing chemicals because your brain just produces chemicals; there’s no reason for anything or why chemicals arise they just happen—but yeah, I explained it, it’s chemicals ABC and XYZ and LMN and maybe a few others, but yeah there’s no reason why there are chemicals: I’m a lot better and more scientific than you are, is all—but yeah, there’s a chemical medium by which the movement of the heart and the spirit is conducted into the physical world. Medieval philosophers understood some of that, the concept, at least, if not chemicals LMN, etc., but where I disagree with the consensus Christians and the normal people and the 12-Steppers is that “drug” should not be this big scare word, right: just a powerful physical being you treat with respect, the way that Native peoples do, right…. It’s like a sort of psychiatry, you know: you have one drug, adult-child irritation/phobia, etc., or say, embodied being existential terror at getting painfully burned up to a crisp in the next five minutes—or rather, for however long it takes—then the answer doesn’t have to be monkishness, you know—I mean, if that works for you, right—but a spiritual drug that turns your perfectionism/control down a little bit, or as a total analgesic for your spirit as your body perishes, right….

Suffering is kinda an over-valued, by many people, part of the spiritual experience. Certainly we all need to have enough discipline to treat life with respect to have the best results, and also sometimes pleasure and pain are linked—‘a court of thorns and roses’, lol: a silly little book, but, love does not always waste many days, right: the first passion and insanity of things, right—sometimes the monk’s way of life is a sort of Epicureanism, you know: not according to the popular conceptions (food/sex = pleasure), but really Epicurus thought no pain = pleasure, right: which is the sort of “selfish” monk’s way, right: and then there’s like, pleasure = bad, pain = God; which is a little…. I mean, you want to be highly atypical and you’re okay with walking alone in the woods, then that too is Nature: but you want be atypical and have all the world with you, right—walking all along with the woods, with all men at your beck and call, right…. That’s kinda been the path of the Christian Church: and that’s not really natural, right….
… (més)
goosecap | Jan 7, 2024 |
The Meaning of Witchcraft written by the author, founder and creator of Wicca and what is now dubbed the Gardnerian Tradition after its founder Gerald Gardner.
Though this book is dated and has many fictious historical references, this is a must read book for anyone wanting to follow the Wiccan path and more specifically Traditional Wicca in order to understand the mind set during the times of Wicca's beginnings.
CerberusBindweed | Hi ha 2 ressenyes més | Nov 8, 2023 |
I read this book some time ago as part of a Wiccan history project or whatever, although since the review I did then was kinda stilted and unfortunate, I’ve decided to cannibalize the old one and re-do it. (Which will probably be the beginning of a rumor at the Intergalactic Crusade Network that witches are cannibals, you know. “The Intergalactic Crusade Network: a diminished church for today, a smaller church for tomorrow”.)

I certainly think the thing could stand on its own, apart from Gerry’s unique status, as a novel, you know, (blah blah blah, blah blah BLAH, (offers tray) opera cake?), but however you look at it I think it’s also different from many witch-themed novels in that Gerry is trying to gain the acceptance of Christians, at least to exist, you know, whereas a lot of later writers have used the whole episode to thump “Christians” or whatever, (“All men will know you are my disciples, in that you Christians and the women have nothing to do with one another”), without actually thinking that there is such a thing as a witch, you know. And Gerry’s novel is more social realism than mythology, so there’s a lot of, I don’t know, a certain amount of saying that of course some of the more /fantastic, dramatic/ things were rumor, you know—you have a body; your body has limitations…. But he certainly does see matter as open to influence from mind and spirit, and doesn’t see the quest to use that power to gain ‘castles and lands’ as illegitimate, right….

And the war-spirit is funny. It really is.

The old man is a great character; I love how he was a Christian despite being not a naive angry peasant persecutor, and even the church authorities are okay in the end (shhh, I won’t tell anyone you killed your cousin the old baron, just start paying taxes on that new castle…. Baron!). I even liked how the old man was skeptical of the whole broomstick fertility symbol crap….. although, hey, religions in this age are usually skeptical of inter-gender relations, but love is certainly part of all religions.

…. And they are mostly men, except for the classic persecuted witch, but it was the 1940s, witchcraft was still illegal, and I guess Gerry figured he didn’t need extra risk, you know.
… (més)
goosecap | Hi ha 1 ressenya més | Apr 16, 2023 |
An old book and topics jump around a lot. Loved first chapter and last chapter but everything inbetween i had to be patient as I read through.
As one of the first books written publically about the truth of witches and the magick they work and religion they believe, Gardner starts a new era and if he were alive today would likely be astounded by how many Gardnerian Wiccas there claim to be. A historical read for those interested in modern witchcraft and occult of the modern age.
Evelyn.B | Hi ha 1 ressenya més | Jan 1, 2021 |


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