Books on Spiritual Topics

Polytheism, Paganism, and Northern Tradition Shamanism

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Talking to the Spirits: Personal Gnosis in Pagan Religion

with Kenaz Filan (Inner Traditions – Destiny Books, 2013)

For our ancestors the whole world was alive with spirits. The Gods bubbled forth from rivers and springs and whispered in the breezes that rustled through cities and farms. The ground underfoot, the stones, the fire that cooked the food and drove off the darkness, these all had spirits–not just spirits in some other dimension, but spirits in them who could be spoken to and allied with. In today’s world we are led to believe that the spirits long ago went silent and that spiritual wisdom can only be gained through established religious doctrine.

Providing a guide for opening two-way conversation with the spirits of daily life as well as direct communication with the Gods, Kenaz Filan and Raven Kaldera explore how to enrich your spiritual path with personal gnosis–asking your Guides for assistance or teachings and receiving a response. They explain how to develop your sensitivity to the voices of the Divine, discern genuine spiritual messages from the projection of internal psychodrama, and what to do (and not do) with the messages you receive. Confirming their own personal gnosis with Northern Tradition Pagan beliefs and Greco-Roman, Celtic, Egyptian, and indigenous hunter-gatherer lore, the authors discuss how to avoid theological conflicts when someone’s personal gnosis differs from that of their Pagan group as well as how to authenticate messages with individual and group divination. Offering practices and principles for seekers and groups, they reveal that the spirits never went silent, we simply forgot how to hear them. Buy Talking to the Spirits at Amazon

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Horn and Banner: Rituals for the Northern Tradition

(Asphodel Press, 2012)

As long as we have had Gods and ancestors, we have created rituals to honor them and to mark the turning points in our lives. Although the rites of the ancient people of northern Europe were almost all obliterated, modern inheritors of this tradition are creating new ceremonies to bless our lives and celebrate our Gods. Horn and Banner contains a rainbow of Norse/Germanic-inspired rites contributed by practitioners around the world, and from many branches of the Northern Tradition. May they light your way and guide your path. (362 pages, 6″x9″) See preview of Horn and Banner at Asphodel Press.

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Neolithic Shamanism: Spirit Work in the Norse Tradition

with Galina Krasskova (Inner Traditions – Destiny Books, 2012)

We are all surrounded by spirits. Many people feel called to work with them, but few know where to begin. Enjoined by the Gods and spirits to fulfill this need, Raven Kaldera and Galina Krasskova have reconstructed the indigenous spiritual traditions of northern Europe and Scandinavia extinguished more than one thousand years ago by the spread of Christianity. Arising from basic survival needs, these practical traditions are fundamentally tied to the elements found in the harsh world of the ancient North.

Beginning with the skills tied to the Earth element, necessary for grounding prior to the more demanding aspects of the practice–working with Sun, Moon, Plants, Animals, Water, Fire, Craft, and Air–the authors explain, step by step, how to build relationships with each elemental spirit and the Ancestors. Offering 83 practical exercises, from cleansing with the Moon or borrowing the legs of Reindeer to making sacred space with Mugwort or creating an ancestor altar, they also explore building spirit relationships through altered states. Emphasizing the proper management of your spirit relationships to avoid spiritual debt or offense, the authors outline the ancient cultural rules and taboos that circumscribe these practices, essential knowledge for successful and fruitful spirit alliances.

Detailing the beginning set of skills needed to work with the spirits of this ancient world, this comprehensive workbook offers a unique ancestral spiritual outlet for those of northern European descent as well as an accessible guide for anyone trying to fulfill their shamanic callings. Buy Neolithic Shamanism at Amazon

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EarthBound: Pagan Homesteading

(Asphodel Press, 2012)

A guide to rural living, small farming, and self-sufficiency as an earth-centered spiritual discipline. While it has hundreds of tips on simple, practical skills, its greatest gift lies in the words of its contributors — Pagan and Heathen homesteaders across the continent. This book is not only about what we do, it’s about how and why we do it, and what that means to our souls. Whether you homestead yourself, or you’d like to someday, or you simply want to drink in the virtual life around many different Pagan homesteads, this book will educate you in many ways. Five different photographers and one artist donated their work to this lavishly illustrated, full color book. Revised second edition. (459 pages, 8.5″x11″) See preview of EarthBound at Asphodel Press.

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Dealing With Deities: Practical Polytheistic Theology

(Asphodel Press, 2012)

Polytheism – the worship of multiple Gods and Goddesses?is still a fledgling movement in Western civilization after centuries of oppression and near-obliteration. Many consider it mere superstition, but a new wave of polytheists are analyzing their faiths in the same way that mainstream religions have done. Dealing With Deities delves into one theology of polytheism with clear and consistent explanations of belief, placing it on the same stage as any other players in an interfaith examination. For polytheists who want to take a deeper view of their faith, and for non-polytheists who want to learn about what goes on across the many-colored side of the religious fence, this book is a valuable and sensible resource that shows the power and profundity of a modern look at this ancient path. (135 pages, 6″x9″) See preview of Dealing with Deities at Asphodel Press.

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Sacred Masque: Ensemble Rituals for Pagan Groups

(Asphodel Press, 2012)

Mystery plays, interactive sacred games, teaching rituals with casts of dozens? As Neo-Pagan groups grow in size and scope, large public rituals with a cast of dozens are becoming more popular. This book holds fifteen years of ensemble rituals from the First Kingdom Church of Asphodel, ready for any Pagan group to use part or all of them as part of their large religious rites. May the Gods and spirits bless us all! (219 pages, 6″x9″) See preview of Sacred Masque at Asphodel Press.

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Moon Phase Astrology

(Inner Traditions – Destiny Books, 2011)

A guide to understanding the phases of astrological Moon signs and their effects on emotions and personality.

  • Describes the positive and negative character-defining traits of each of the 96 Moon phase/Moon sign combinations
  • Explains how to use your natal Moon’s sign and phase to predict how current and approaching Moons can affect you
  • Explores the universal challenges arising during each Moon phase throughout the year and ways to honor each phase as it passes

The Moon’s ever-changing phases offer a way to deepen our understanding of our natal Moon sign as well as the Moon’s day-to-day influence on our emotional tides. Through its 8 phases and its wandering dance through each of the 12 signs of the Zodiac–from the Infant’s Moon (the New Moon in Aries) to the Storyteller’s Moon (the Full Moon in Gemini) to the Prophet’s Moon (the waning Balsamic Moon in Aquarius)–the Moon shares its story in 96 different ways.

Telling the stories of the heart of all 96 Moon phase and Moon sign combinations, Raven Kaldera explains the creative gifts and emotional challenges bestowed upon those born under each Moon archetype as well as how to nurture the positive traits and improve–or at least discourage–the negative ones. Exploring the influences each Moon archetype has on us as it passes, the author reveals which Moons are the most difficult, what innate qualities each Moon brings out in us, and what we can do to honor each Moon. Including evocative quotes illuminating the nature of each Moon, Kaldera shows how to use your natal Moon’s astrological sign and phase to find your “hidden Moons”–the shadows cast by passing Moons–and predict how current and approaching Moons will affect you. Buy Moon Phase Astrology at Amazon

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Pagan Astrology

(Inner Traditions – Destiny Books, 2009)

Traditionally, magically oriented astrology has focused on Sun-sign horoscopes, whereas modern Western astrology has focused on attempting to become as “scientific” as possible in hopes of aligning with its sister science of astronomy. In Pagan Astrology, Raven Kaldera, a practicing astrologer and Pagan shaman, uses the commonalities and strengths of Western astrology and Pagan green magic to introduce a hands-on astrological practice that incorporates intuition, spells, and other modes of folk magic.

Kaldera includes an extensive compendium of modern magical remedies to counteract negative astrological influences and shows how to use planetary energy to aid Pagan worship and green magic practice through spell-casting, love magic, and shamanic stargazing. Kaldera also explains how to create planetary altars that enhance the astrological correspondences of traditional Pagan holidays using the tools of folk magic. Practitioners of green and folk magic and those who love traditional astrology will welcome this unique approach to planetary magic. Buy Pagan Astrology at Amazon

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The Northern Shamanic Herbal

(Asphodel Press, 2011)

Long ago, healers in northern Europe used herbs for medicine, magic, sustenance, and to commune with spirits both green and divine. The Northern Shamanic Herbal picks up where the ancients left off, with introductions to 150 northern European herbs and their many uses. This book is also an introduction to a modern Pagan elemental herbalism that is rife with the spirits of plants and Northern Gods. Learn to listen to the voices of the Greenwights! Buy the Northern Shamanic Herbal at Lulu

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Spirals & Shards: Pagan Poetry from the Back of the Heart

(Asphodel Press, 2010)

To be a Pagan is to live in a world that is alive, all around you. Trees and stones and rivers have lives and spirits of their own. Gods send omens in the rustle of leaves, the advertisement in the mailbox, the song on the radio. I called this book “Pagan Poetry from the Back of the Heart” because so many of us write these poems in solitude, not for any other eyes, just scribbled down because we saw and felt and had to do something. These poems are from the part of the heart not often seen, the reclusive part that writes in the wee hours and then carefully saves what may never be seen. We tuck them away, between the old outworn toys from our childhood and the travel brochures for the trip we’ll never take. One day, perhaps someone will want them. Who knows? Buy Spirals & Shards at Lulu

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Drawing Down the Spirits: The Traditions and Techniques of Spirit Possession

with Kenaz Filan (Inner Traditions – Destiny Books, 2009)

Drawing Down the Spirits presents an insider’s view of the inner workings, sacred traditions, and prevalence of spirit possession existing in our modern world. Spirit possession is an integral part of shamanism as well as many neo-pagan forms of worship that draw down deities or invite spirit possession. However, spirit possession is not for the unprepared. In Drawing Down the Spirits, Kenaz Filan and Raven Kaldera, both initiated and experienced in shamanic and Vodou traditions, present the practical guidance needed to participate in ritual possession.

Addressing the benefits and the dangers that await the naive, Filan and Kaldera show that there is no such thing as a guaranteed “safe” possession because spirits have their own agenda–and they are much more powerful than we are. The authors provide a variety of techniques to prepare for possession and abort possession and to promote the safety of the possessed as well as the spirits and witnesses present. With a wide-ranging look at the historic forms of ritual possession found throughout the world–including Uganda, Nepal, Korea, Bali, Greece, Turkey, Scandinavia, and France–the authors also include numerous firsthand accounts collected from witnesses of modern spirit possession. Buy Drawing Down the Spirits at Amazon

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Northern Tradition for the Solitary Practitioner: A Book of Prayer, Devotional Practice, and the Nine Worlds of Spirit

with Galina Krasskova (New Page Books, 2009)

Northern Tradition for the Solitary Practitioner is a ground-breaking look at the development of devotional work within the body of polytheistic religious traditions ranging from Theodism to Asatru to Norse Paganism, that comprise the greater umbrella of the Northern Tradition. While interest in devotional and experiential work within these traditions has been growing rapidly over the past few years, this is the first book to offer an inclusive look at the diverse scope and breadth of such practices as a living, modern-day religion. It features an in-depth exploration of altar work, prayer, prayer beads, ritual work, sacred images, lore, and a thorough examination of the common core cosmology that forms the foundation of belief for the vast expanse of Northern Tradition communities.

Northern Tradition for the Solitary Practitioner is not denomination-specific: rather, it seeks to provide an entry into interior practice for anyone involved in a branch of this broad family of traditions of the ancient Norse, Germanic, and Saxon peoples, using material suitable for the solitary, independent practitioner. Those outside of the Northern Tradition who wish to deepen their own devotional practice will find this book helpful in their own work, as well. This important new title can be seen as a companion book to Galina Krasskova’s Exploring the Northern Tradition or it can stand entirely on its own. Buy Northern Tradition for the Solitary Practitioner at Amazon

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The Giants’ Tarot

(Asphodel Press, 2008)

The Jotunfolk, or Giants, of northern myth are a widely varied race. Some are fiery, some watery, some earthy, some like the blizzards of winter. Some are Gods, some are simple trolls, and many are in between. Their stories weave through northern myth like the tracks of wild animals. This Tarot deck celebrates them, showing their faces all together for the first time. As a race with many different faces, it is fitting that the deck is a collaborative effort by many artists, all with different styles. The accompanying booklet tells the stories of all the gods and spirits in the deck, as well as how to interpret readings. See the Cards on NorthernPaganism.org!

Buy The Giants’ Tarot direct from Asphodel Press

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Hermaphrodeities: The Transgender Spirituality Workbook

Revised & Expanded 2nd Edition (Asphodel Press, 2008)

Transgendered people have long been robbed of their own spiritual history, not knowing that there were once times and places where ours was considered a spiritual path in and of itself. This book explores both our spiritual history and our modern predicaments, shaping the outline of a contemporary spiritual path for those of us who don’t fit into just one gender box. This revised and expanded edition of Hermaphrodeities features third gender myths, deities, personal and group exercises, community service project suggestions, rituals, and interviews with people from all over the transgender spectrum. We are all sacred and it is time that the world knew it. (370 pages, 6″ x 9″) Buy Hermaphrodeities at Lulu or on Amazon.
(You can sometimes find the previous edition of Hermaphrodeities at Amazon or other used-book sellers.)

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The Ethical Psychic Vampire

Revised & Expanded Second Edition! (Ellhorn Press, 2008)

If you’ve ever felt that your energy or life force was being continually drained by someone – especially if it was someone that you loved – then you probably should have given them this book. This is the definitive guide to psychic vampires, with exercises and advice to help them learn control and compassion, and get their needs met in ethical ways. Far too many books on the subject treat psychic vampires as “those awful people over there who should be avoided”; this book treats them as real human beings who may need a little help coping with a challenging and ambivalent psychic gift. Written by a psychic vampire and shaman, “The Ethical Psychic Vampire” also covers such controversial topics as spirituality, sex magic, and ceremonial blood-drinking. From coping with vampire children to dealing with your vampire lover, this book covers it all in straightforward style. Buy The Ethical Psychic Vampire at Lulu or on Amazon.

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Wightridden: Paths of Northern-Tradition Shamanism

(Asphodel Press, 2007)

The Eightfold Path is a wheel of eight roads to opening the mind and soul, eight paths of altered states. From rhythm to utiseta to fasting to ordeal, this book covers the ways that the ancient shamans of the Northlands used these paths to open themselves to the Wights. The fourth book in the Northern-Tradition Shamanism series, this book includes spirit-taught lessons from many different spirit-workers and the Gods that they serve and revere. Buy Wightridden at Lulu or on Amazon.

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Wyrdwalkers: Techniques of Northern-Tradition Shamanism

(Asphodel Press, 2007)

From dealing with Gods and spirits, to mastering the elements to reading the Threads of Wyrd, this book is a primer for the basic skills of a northern-tradition shaman or shamanic practitioner. The third book in the Northern-Tradition Shamanism series, this book includes spirit-taught lessons from many different spirit-workers and the Gods that they serve and revere. Buy Wyrdwalkers at Lulu or on Amazon.

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The Pathwalker’s Guide to the Nine Worlds

(Asphodel Press, 2007)

The Pathwalker’s Guide to the Nine Worlds is the first written exploration of the ancient Norse/Germanic cosmology not by academics and mythologists, but by the experiences of northern-tradition spirit-workers astrally visiting the Cosmos of the World Tree and the Nine Worlds that surround it. Written as a travelogue and etiquette-primer for would-be worldwalkers, and centered around the author’s experiences on a nine-day walking tour of the Nine Worlds, this is the first book of its kind ever published. Buy The Pathwalker’s Guide at Lulu or on Amazon.

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The Jotunbok: Working With The Giants Of The Northern Tradition

(Asphodel Press, 2007)

The Gods of the Northern Tradition–the religion of the ancient Norse/Germanic/Anglo-Saxon peoples–have been rediscovered in growing numbers in the past years, as have the elves and dwarves that inhabit the Nine Worlds of the Cosmic Tree along with them. However, few have written about the Giants of those worlds and the Gods who number among them-Loki, Hela, Fenris, the World Serpent, and others-until now. The Jotunbok-the first book in the Northern-Tradition Shamanism series-is a collection of the wisdom, ways and tales of the Giants and their Gods, told by those who revere and work with them. Buy The Jotunbok at LuLu or on Amazon.

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Dark Moon Rising: Pagan BDSM & the Ordeal Path

(Asphodel Press, 2006)

Throughout history, from the Hindu Kavadi ceremony to the Lakota Sun Dance, the Ordeal Path has been an honored spiritual road to the magic of the flesh, and to touching the Gods. Today many Pagans are discovering this path, by accident or by design. Simultaneously, many practitioners of secular BDSM are finding themselves having spiritual experiences in the middle of their most secular scenes. This book explores the crossover points between both these communities and practices, a cross-section which is growing steadily, baring controversial articles on topics as diverse as sacred pain, bondage, hook suspension, cathartic Pagan ritual, the spirituality of dominance and submission, and being the slave of the Gods. With contributions by noted authors and activists in both communities, and stunning photography by artist and Shibari-Do master Bridgett Harrington, this book is an awe-inspiring gateway into the Realm of the Underworld… and back again. Buy Dark Moon Rising at LuLu or on Amazon.

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Pagan Polyamory: Becoming a Tribe of Hearts

(Llewellyn Publications, 2005)

The term polyamory describes non-monogamous relationships based on honesty and affection. Presenting a fascinating peek inside the polyamorous lifestyle from a Pagan perspective, Raven Kaldera offers practical insight and spiritual depth into a vastly misunderstood way of life.

Relating polyamory to astrology and the elements (air, fire, water, earth, and spirit), the author addresses all aspects of the polyamorous life, including family life, sexual ethics, emotional issues, proper etiquette, relationship boundaries, and the pros of cons of this lifestyle. Kaldera also discusses polyamory as a path of spiritual transformation and shares spells, rituals, and ceremonies for affirming one’s relationships and spirituality. Buy Pagan Polyamory at Amazon

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MythAstrology

(Llewellyn Publications, 2003)

In ancient times, priests, poets, and astrologers studied the movements of the planets to understand the cycles of life. Mars, Venus, Neptune – the planets themselves are named after gods and goddesses of civilizations past. MythAstrology is a guide to understanding the expression of planetary energies through the signs of the zodiac. Explore the many myths that you may be living, their lessons, and their rewards and difficulties by discovering your own astrological mythology. All you need is a copy of your astrological birth chart and this book to form a complete astromythological profile of yourself and your friends and family. Deepen your understanding of ancient myth, modern astrology, and your own psyche. Buy MythAstrology at Amazon

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Welcoming Hera’s Blessing: Handfasting and Wedding Rituals

with Tannin Schwartzstein (Llewellyn Publications, 2003)

Cross-culturally, weddings are perhaps the most common rite of passage that adults in our society have in common. It is also the one event that crosses cultures regardless of age, gender, social status or income. Perhaps most interestingly, it is also an event that most people wish to commemorate with some kind of ritual regardless of whether they had a religious or secular upbringing – and whether they do it publicly or privately, brief and cursory or long and elaborate.

Handfasting and Wedding Rituals has everything you need to plan the perfect Pagan wedding. You’ll find advice and examples to help you with basic wedding planning, writing vows, and ritual construction, along with practical tips and great ideas about everything from low-cost wedding favors to candle and bonfire safety. Handfasting and Wedding Rituals also includes sixteen full rites honoring a wide variety of Pagan traditions. Rituals in their full form can be used exactly as printed or modified to fit your needs. Each rite is categorized as level one, two, or three depending on their level of overt Pagan content and degree of participation expected from your guests. Handfasting and Wedding Rituals includes multiple interfaith rituals and handparting/divorce rituals, as well as rituals for same sex couples and weddings of more than two. Buy Hera’s Blessing at Amazon

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Urban Primitive

with Tannin Schwartzstein (Llewellyn Publications, 2002)

“When people think of Wicca, say authors Raven Kaldera and Tannin Schwartzstein, they tend to conjure images of bucolic festivals, dryadic rituals and flower-wreathed maidens. In other words, the public mind associates paganism with the seasons and the countryside. But that’s only a part of the picture. In The Urban Primitive: Paganism in the Concrete Jungle, Kaldera and Schwartzstein contend that modern neo-paganism is actually an urban-based movement, and they offer specific rituals and hints on living in the city. Here, readers will learn how to use magick to find an elusive parking space, understand the symbolic meaning of various body piercings and discover spells for unearthing treasures in a junkyard. There is even a chapter on the magickal properties of urban weeds such as bittersweet, dandelion, kudzu (who knew?) and ragweed.” — Publisher’s Weekly Buy Urban Primitive at Amazon