PAGANISM: An Introduction to Earth-Centered Religions

Joyce Higginbotham, Author, River Higginbotham, Joint Author . Llewellyn $14.95 (250p) ISBN 978-0-7387-0222-3

Most pagan primers jump right into the seasonal calendar, Celtic strands, pentagrams, spell casting and the like. True to form, this offers a judicious overview of the calendar and the general characteristics and essentials of Paganism as the Higginbothams see it—interconnectedness and blessedness. To their credit, though, the authors have crafted a very different kind of book, one of great spiritual depth that could be of genuine and lasting service to anyone who is interested in sorting out the whats and whys of belief. Early on, they outline the "big tent" of Paganism that shelters a dozen or more passageways (Wicca, Druidism, Shamanism, Santería, etc.), comparing it to Christianity and its popular denominations (Methodist, Roman Catholic, etc.). Throughout, they employ calm and rational prose that seeks not to proselytize as much as to aid discernment, making good on the authors' claim that, "Whether or not you decide to be a Pagan once you finish [the book] is not as important as providing you with tools to help you identify your values and goals." The seven chapters are nicely paced with illustrations, diagrams, visualization exercises, discussion points and journal prompts, all of which can be used by individuals or groups. The authors tackle the charge of Satanism head-on with success, but even more progressively (and clearly) they weave new discoveries in physics into the life fabric of belief and action. The final chapter explores ethics, and similar to the others, serves the broadest common good. (July)

Reviewed on: 06/10/2002
Release date: 07/01/2002
Genre: Nonfiction
Open Ebook - 272 pages - 978-0-7387-1703-6
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