Monday, December 12, 2011
Wisewoman of Cornwall
Cassandra Latham-Jones, Troy Books
She is now the wise woman of St. Buryan a village in Cornwall England. Her life is stable and happy in the cottage where she lives and works. But life was not always so serene for the village wise woman. She has had her share of trials and tribulations.
One could question whether a wise woman and or witch is born a witch or a wise woman or made into one. Cassandra has not completely made up her mind just yet. Currently she feels it is a bit of both. To called by the spirits is no joy ride. Those called by the spirits of the old ones are tried with many challenges. Those who are called are ordinary human beings but there are no gifts that go unearned. There is darkness and pain and sickness but there is also a great degree of self knowledge and intimacy with the old one.
Cassandra was adopted to her family on Halloween. She got introduced to the craft on the Lammas. Her adoptive family was rather unkind where the only physical intimacy was over a parent’s knee if they were unhappy with the child. Cassandra felt unloved where anything she did was never good enough. Her adoptive father suffered from violent episodes. Cassandra was used to walking in nature and becoming familiar with the spirits that dwelt there. She also used to escape into the other world. Cassandra used psychic skills in order to survive.
She experimented with Christianity and Buddhism both of which did not appeal to her for a variety of reasons. She was institutionalized at least twice and had a horrific traffic accident. Her trials also included scoliosis. From beingh a nurse and going through occupational therapy Cassandra decided to become a village wise woman at the behest of a social worker.
St. Buryan is very tolerant and accepting. Cassandra gets most of her instruction from the sprits themselves. Not one one to believe in dogmatism , rigidity or dependence. Casandra insists that her patients heal themselves and she just assists them. She also belive that rituals and spells should not be followed by rote but should allow for change. She listens to her clients and uses the tarot to diagnose problems. She also tells how she fights for the preservation of monuments and pagan burial sights.
Cassandra Latham Jones is very compelling. Too bad her book was not longer. I finished all to quickly in one weekend. From her story any aspiring witch can glean lots of information cause you have a general idea of what to do. Which is the real magic. She does have spells and recipes at the end of the book. But Cassandra misses the old days of covens and learning from elder and spirits and laments in away the do it yourself book and workshop trend. I would love to learn magic from her directly. This book gets five out of five stars
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