I’m happy to say I’ve been working steadily on my witching herbs book. I’m halfway through turning all my notes into actual chapters. Right now I am writing about vervain. I have SO MUCH information about this plant that it has been difficult to sort it all out into something useful. It was like a shattered cup. Now it is more like a mosaic–the pieces are becoming connected. It’s such a great feeling!
I originally considered this book to be merely an introduction to the herbs and how to grow them, sort of an herbal magic 101: “Here’s some folklore, and here’s the lowdown about growing them; have at it.” But all sorts of stuff has been pouring steadily into it–and coming up from my own work with the plants and IMO, from the plants themselves. It is now much more about how to learn from these plant spirits–still practical, but in a way that I feel has been lacking in writings about herbal magic (including my own). Working on this book is enabling me to codify my own experiences with these plants in a way I could not before and found difficult even to express in words. I also feel it is much more worthwhile to do this than another intro to witching herbs. I consider that the deepening of my work on this book is a result of the work I did for the Abramelin operation. Although I did not complete it, the operation worked profound changes in my spirituality and magic.
I had already begun to sketch out a series of related books I was interested in writing next. These too were very practical and entry-level herbal magic. But I have had a lot of inspiration on a completely different topic–the witch’s sabbath–and I am working up an outline for a book on that. It is going to be damned absorbing to research that one, and I feel it will be a much more significant contribution to witchcraft than the books I had planned. Witchcraft has a huge hole in it, IMO (maybe a bunch of holes), with regard to working with other practitioners. The hierarchical setup of a Wiccan coven and its accompanying dualistic approach to spirituality has never appealed to me. I mean no offense to Wicca, which has completely revitalized magic and opened it up. It is just not my thing. I don’t think the Wiccan coven setup is especially historical, either. I am not a reconstructionist, but I do think history is vitally important. We should at least make an attempt to learn from past mistakes–and past exemplars. History can function as a wellspring of inspiration and guidance for the present. I wanted to work towards remedying the absence of a true means for working with other witches and to get back to what I consider (perhaps wrongly, but there ya go) the true anarchical and hierarchy-busting historical foundations of witchcraft. The witch’s sabbath gives a center to my attempt. I expect my research along those lines to be both fun and dangerous. I will keep folks posted here.