Magic and occult spirituality are often themes in popular culture, but with the trend of people moving away from mainstream religion there is a growing market for less traditional forms of spirituality. Now, publishers are conjuring up a cluster of books to respond. One has magic-focused books on the horizon addressing our current political climate and social issues, while another publisher’s forthcoming book attempts to bridge the gap between magic and science. The occult life of an influential 16th-century scientist is the subject with one publisher and yet another brings the ancient ways of Druidic magic into the modern world.
Every month on nights of a waning crescent moon, “people around the world, alone, or in groups, have gathered,” writes author Michael M. Hughes, “to focus their consciousness in a ritualistic effort to bind Donald Trump and his cohorts from doing harm.” Magic For The Resistance: Rituals and Spells for Change is due out in September and according to Elysia Gallo, senior acquisitions editor at Llewellyn Worldwide, it “is a direct response to the dramatic rise in more personal, practical spiritual traditions from the ashes of organized religion.”
In June, also from Llewellyn, is Queer Magic: LGBT+ Spirituality and Culture From Around The World by Tomás Prower. Publisher Bill Krause, tells PW that it “offers the LGBT community much-needed representation.” He points out that “there has definitely been more increasing interest and engagement in magic by the queer community than by the general population.”
Gary Jansen, senior editor at Harmony Books observes, “We are seeing a shift in how people define their faith with many people leaving organized religion to pursue their own syncretic spiritual path.” This, he hypothesizes, “can lead many to research personal empowerment though magic.” In April, Harmony will release Real Magic: Ancient Wisdom, Modern Science and A Guide to the Secret Power of the Universe. Author Dean Radin writes, “There are rising trends in science suggesting that what was once called magic is poised to evolve into a new scientific discipline, just as medieval astrology and alchemy evolved into today's astronomy and chemistry.”
In John Dee and the Empire of Angels: Enochian Magick and the Occult Roots of the Modern World (Inner Traditions, April), author Jason Louv informs readers that, “[John] Dee is remarkable not [just] for his occult interests but for the unprecedented level of intellectual and scientific rigor he brought to them.” John Hays, director of sales and marketing at Inner Traditions, predicts, “As people seek new spiritual paths outside of mainstream religion, they may become more open to the occult.”
Finally, Red Wheel/Weiser Books has a more down to earth approach with The Bardic Book of Becoming: An Introduction to Modern Druidry by the late Ivan McBeth, coming out in April. Judika Illes, the book’s acquiring editor, believes that “the spiritual lessons of Druidry are particularly significant and beneficial during a time of environmental crisis.” She also stresses that “the spiritual teachings” of Druidry “are accessible to those of all faiths or none.”