The Magical Life of Scott Cunningham by Donald Michael Kraig
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Mention the words Pagan or Magic and most likely these two names will pop up, Scott Cunningham and Donald Michael Kraig. Scott was Wicca and Donald was Ceremonial Magick. Donald and Scott became room mates after Donald had to leave his apartment because the land lord did a horrible job with the roof. Through an occult shop of sorts Donald met Scott Cunningham. For six years they were room mate and life long friends.
This mini-book which runs about 50 pages is broken into three sections. The section talks about their 6 years together as room mates, the second section talks about Scott's MAGIC techniques, and the third talks about Hawaiian Island magic and spirituality. The part that I found most informative was the first part that spoke about their years as room mates. I have been to Donald Michael Kraig's workshops and I regularly read his blogs. I knew most of it. But someone who did not would learn a lot. A couple things that stand out for me was the lesson of Scott being focused. When he was involved in a project he became so focused until he finished that he blocked everything out. That was the magical secret to his success. Before anything went into Cunningham's books Scott either experimented with it or made sure it was based on historical facts. Scott was dedicated to the truth. Scott also made Wicca available to non initiates who did not have access to a coven. He allowed people to learn the basic principles of Wicca and work it their own way. He did not put down the coven structure but he did present an alternative.
The second section was about his magical techniques. Now these technique are available in all of Scott's books. I read most of his books so all this stuff was review for me. It was a bit of a let down. I was expecting to learn something that I had never read about before. I guess if you are new to the whole what was presented in the second part would be rather informative and mind blowing.
The third section was about Hawaii spirituality and religion. During his last years even when he was struggling with lymphoma he made his way out to Hawaii a few times year to learn more. Scott loved Hawaiian spirituality and he wanted to learn as much as he could in a time when access to non Hawaiians was rather limited. Donald gives a good over view of the history. The Hawaiian gods are discussed and so are the miniature menuhune folk who are reminiscent to the Pict of the British Aisles. This third section whetted my appetite leaving a hunger to pursue Hawaiian spirituality more in depth. I think I will definitely buy Scott's book on the subject.
Scott Cunningham was a luminary who totally changed the face of Wicca. I was hoping for more even from such a short book and a great author as Donald Michael Kraig. Maybe Mr. Kraig can write a full length biography. Someone like me is beyond this teaser but for someone just getting started it is a good appetizer.
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