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People tend to think that darkness is evil, malign and dangerous, that anything that is feared or hidden should be avoided, only to be seen in the distance. Some pagans often decide to focus on what shines, the commonly descriptive as the ‘light’ side of magic, while the ‘dark’ is approached with more caution, more fear and even with doubt.
With her book “Dark Goddess Craft: A Journey through the Heart of Transformation,” which is filled with Goddesses from different cultures and myths, each a new face of the same Goddess many pagans worship in their rituals and ceremonies, author Stephanie Woodfield showed that there’s nothing to be afraid of in the dark.
Woodfield explores the many version on how darkness, as perceived nowadays, could lead to a positive, useful and valuable part of spirituality in general, along with examples on how to honor those deities, work with them, ask for their help, so the reader can do their own ways in the future after some practice, which is also encouraged by the author, understanding that Paganism is a very personal path depending on who practices it.
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Because of that, Woodfield has included her own and experiences, along with those of her friends, with such deities as a way of providing an example of the possible outcome, but always making it clear that any approach is as valid as hers, as long as comfortable to the reader and taking into consideration the background of each Goddess.
Well known myths such as Hekate’s, Kali’s and Morrigan are explained to newcomers along with those who could be more foreign such as Sedna’s, Eris’, Blodeuwedd’s and Ereshkigal’s, making it an interesting and juicy learning process, a well invested amount of time that provides a window to a larger picture about the common, shared and publicized vision of the Goddess.
Each of the chapters of Dark Goddess Craft presents a different Goddess, each one with her own lore, the myths that surround her, different version of their stories by some authors and the elements the rule over, giving a complete, yet practical and simple approach to them for the reader to fully understand what they all mean for both the author and the readers themselves.
Stephanie Woodfield uses a simple language, very descriptive at times to cover the amount of details that have to be understood in order to properly work with some of the deities, but not boring at any time. It also sparked my interest that each of the chapters start with a kind of guided meditation, or a narrative that could be used as such, when working with the Goddess presented.
Dark Goddess Craft: A Journey Through the Heart of Transformation is a book many Pagans should read, and that could even be of use for those who are uninformed about what Paganism is about in order to corrects wrong interpretations and fight ignorance about a topic, perhaps controversial, but that can bring a lot of good and light, no matter how contradictory or ironic it can sound.
Dark Goddess Craft: A Journey through the Heart of Transformation
Print Length: 242 pages
Publisher: Llewellyn Publications (November 8, 2017)
Publication Date: November 8, 2017
About the Author:
Stephanie Woodfield (Brookfield, CT) has been a practicing Witch for over fourteen years and a Priestess for ten years. Her lifelong love of Irish mythology led to a close study of Celtic Witchcraft. A natural clairvoyant and empath, she has worked as a tarot card reader and is ordained as a minister with the Universal Life Church.
About the reviewer:
Bader Saab is a digital journalist and self-published writer; a solitary, eclectic wiccan interested in the darker side of magic and divination; a gothic guy that tries to educate whenever he cans. Hopefully, someday he will succeed in one of them.