Moon Phases


Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Condensed Sorcery

Condensed Chaos: An Introduction to Chaos MagicCondensed Chaos: An Introduction to Chaos Magic by Phil Hine
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Wow this book was awesome. Short powerful and too the point. wish I had read this earlier in my quest. This book is pure magical technique. If you want to get started with magic this book is a great place to start. If it is piffy little spells you are looking for then this will not be what your looking for. Chaos magick is a very unique form of magick. . There are several paradigms of magic; Ceremonial, Wicca, Voodoo etc. Chaos is not exactly it's on paradigm yet it is a philosophy that let lets you paradigm hop so as to do the form of magic that is best suited for what your goal is. Belief is a tool and you can basically believe in a paradigm while you are working with it and when you are done you can sort of move on to another paradigm. Chaos magic is results oriented magic. If you do a working and it worked then you will have the physical results you were working for. Very real and down to earth. Chaos spurns the mentality that rejects the physical world over the spiritual . In a way physical is most important. Magic id done for results Becoming a magician does require commitment and drive. It is something that you have to want to do. One has to do magic at their level. Phil Hine crumbs on the magus's or people who think they are all that. He I against these inflated egos. Magic is meant to be fun and the value of laughter in dispelling negative magic is unspeakably powerful.

Other items covered in this book are how to make Chaos servitors, energy creation that do our bidding. It tells about ho o do it, the pitfall and how to do it safely. Ego magiick tells about dissolving the identity so a to make oneself more fluid flexible and able to take needed action. Our demons are those little buggers in our subconscious that act up as jealousy or anger. The book tells how to del with it and how to make use of it. The Shamanic path is discussed as well.

If you like magic then whatever you path this one is for you. Great technique which are easy to understand and easy to use. This is one book I will refer back to time and again.

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Thursday, April 20, 2017

Manson the Cult Leader

Manson: The Life and Times of Charles MansonManson: The Life and Times of Charles Manson by Jeff Guinn
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The murders of Sharon Tate and Jay Sebring foisted the infamously murderer, Charles Manson into the spotlight. There was more to Charlie Manson then being a serial killer and it ain't all that good. His mother, Kathleen Maddox, was raised in a very strict Christian Environment and she used to rebel.. One act of rebellion was to slip into bars for illicit romance. The result of such an affair with Col. Scott was the birth of Charlie, of course this man never knew Charlie. She later married a guy with the last name of Manson. The name stuck. She herself went through a multitude of guys and ended up serving several terms in prison .

Charlie's childhood was about moving around from one relatives house to another. Usually his bizarre behaviors would become too much for his relatives to bear. He also ended up in a multitude of juvenile detention centers. It was while he was in prison that Charlie picked up a love of Scientology and Dale Carnegie's "How to Make Friends and Influence People". He would use these tactics to start his own cult.

From prisons and Juvenile detention centers, Manson made his way west to San Francisco and then to Los Angeles. It was in San Francisco that Manson made a home and started recruiting members for his family . He would later to move to Los Angeles. The family lived on two ranches . Spahn Ranch in Los Angeles and Barker Ranch out in Death Valley. Manson and the family made their way by mooching off people and having his girls dig through trash cans.

The family episode would close with the family being caught and found guilty of multiple murders. Charlie spent his time behind bars and is still there. Many of his followers after being rehabilitated went on to different things.

The book is great in that not only does it give a good biography of Manson but it tells how charismatic a he could be when he wanted. Manson was a master manipulator . He had th girls in the family under his complete control. He made his girls look fore food. He proatitutd them and he dealt him drugs. His cult was based a on a.coming race war. The book did a bang em up job of describing the environment of the sixties both for Los Angeles and. San Francisco . If serial killer or the sixties are your ing I ink you will enjoy this book.

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Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Healing the World with the Goddess

Goddess Calling: Inspirational Messages & Meditations of Sacred Feminine Liberation ThealogyGoddess Calling: Inspirational Messages & Meditations of Sacred Feminine Liberation Thealogy by Karen Tate
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Every once in a while there comes along a goddess book that is seriously worthwhile reading. This book is one of them. Once I got started I was able to complete it in a couple of days. The book was well written, organized and easy to comprehend.. The book is divided into three parts. The first part of the book is about politics and changing the world, the second part is meditations and finally there is further resources for the reader to delve into.
Dr. Tate's message for politics is that it needs to become more goddess centered and incorporating those values the Goddess holds dear. Now Dr. Tate subscribes to the opinion that at one time the world was matriarchal and was a much better place to live in. This has been sort o proven inaccurate but it was more balanced. Our future is bleak when it comes to politics and we are heading for a train wreck. One way to change the future is to change the past or at least the memories of the past. The politics of the Goddess are simple. We need to look after each other and share the wealth. We need to take care of our environment because thing are going bad. The WASP mal dominated world we live in promotes bullying and racism and a host of other ills. I am not much o goddess person but after reading her essays I cannot help but agree we need a new direction and we are very male centered much to our detriment..
The second section is composed of mediations. They are simple an easy to follow. If you want you can read them into a recorder and play it back while you meditate. The mediation work with Sekkment, Artemis, Aphrodite, Minerva an several others. Many take place in a cave or in other natural environments. Some of them focus on prosperity, others on letting go the negative and improving ourselves and the world or the future.
The working are simple and easy to do. No elaborate ritual preparation. You just meditate. Thing are safe also. No drawing blood or working it your dark side here, everything basks in the light. The focus is on healing humanity and the world. Maybe what some people want while others ay strive for different focuses.

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Thursday, April 13, 2017

The End of Prophecy

Warheart (Sword of Truth, #15; Richard and Kahlan, #4)Warheart by Terry Goodkind
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book concludes the Richard and Kahlan series . Thank the gods as it was going on and on. While certain books n the sword of truth series became redundant and repetitive , this last trilogy seems to have avoided those pitfalls. Starting off with Richard in the world of the dead, Kahlan and company journey to a Wichita named Red. Traveling through a perilous country on the look out for half people, they meet the witch who tells them how to release Richards spirit from the realm of the dead . It takes great sacrifice to bring him back, the death of someone who loves him. Getting Richard back from the dead will not make the problems with Saluchan and zhannis Arc go away. Richard still has the poison on him. It is a race against time to defeat his foes and to save himself .

Richard is the one who will end prophecy . Prophecy comes from the world of the dead. The Omen Machine or the Regulais what brought prophecy to the world in the first place. Richard must put it back in the world of the dead. Once accomplished free will reign, life affirming . Saluchan and zhannis Arc wish to erase the barrier between the living and the dead

Those who enjoyed the earlier books should find enjoyment in this final tome. Will Richard defeat his foes? Will he even survive? His foes are powerful and relentless . The poison is killing Richard , blocking his ability to use his gift.

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Saturday, April 8, 2017

Waking Up Jewish

Suddenly Jewish: Jews Raised as Gentiles Discover Their Jewish RootsSuddenly Jewish: Jews Raised as Gentiles Discover Their Jewish Roots by Barbara Kessel
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Suddenly Jewish

Madeline Albright brought this issue into focus when she announced and figured out that she was not really the Cheistian she was raised to be but rather someone with Jewish roots. Many a so called Gentiles have grown up in the non Jewish world have an unexplainable pull towards things that are Jewish. Thes people ,aye drawn to Judaism, have Jewish friend or just plain be drawn to Jewish environments. The discovery that they have Jewish blood coursing through their vein can say me times come as a major shock or as an aha kind of moment that explains things. These hidden Jews are present in Converso or Anusim communities, hidden children, holocaust survivors and adoptees.

In 1492 Spain issued an edict commanding all Jews to flee, die or convert to Catholicism. Even after the Jews converted them were still persecuted. Many perished rather than convert, while others fled. Many who on the heels of Columbus to America were conversos or Anusim. Outwardly they were Catholic but secretly they were Jews. I vent with their Catholic ruse the inquisition was hot on their heels. To maintain their ruse they would become member of the clergy, publicly eat pork. Inside their house they would Light Shabbat candles, sweep the floor a certain way, even maintain underground synagogues. They tried to maintain the practice of marrying among themselves.

The next group is the hidden Jews. Abraham Foxman , director of the ADL, was one such child that fully illustrates this concept. To ensure his survival during the holocaust his parent gave him to a nanny. For the first five years of his life he was raised catholic l. After the Holocaust was over the parent tried to retrieve him but by that point the nanny had become attached to him and would not let him go. The parents got him back but it was several years before he shed all his Catholic practices. There are many like him who grew up unaware of the year their Jewish heritage.

Others are children of Holocaust survivors, who upon arriving from the blood stained sands of Europe drooped all ties to their former religion. Why suffer persecution again? Why subject your children to such stigma? Many nominally converted to other religions, some actively became even atheists. The children are often times upset becaus they may have swallowed some antisemitic beliefs. Other kind of always knew it sometimes there is resentment for having their Judaism kept hidden away from them and many times it will provoke a quest into the realm of Jewish thought and life.

The adoptees are the final category. There is the story of someone who grew up with a staunch Mormon background. This individual knew they were different because of their dark complexion. This discovery would later fuel a quest to explore the Judaic world. Another young woman was adopted into a conservative Jewish family. Her real parents were a Palestinians father and an Irish mother. Reuniting caused friction to be sure and it propelled her to immerse herself more deeply into the Palestinian world.

The book is short yet it covers lots of ground. Mostly comprised of interviews and so subjects relating their story. Very enjoyable and very informative. Wish there were more like it.

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Sunday, April 2, 2017

Wild Wyoming

Wild Horse Country in WyomingWild Horse Country in Wyoming by Jack Price
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

In the 1930's South Dakota was a dust bowl. There was no rain, crops were failing and there were dust storms that choked on everything that tried to breathe. So Jack Price's father decided to move the family out to Wyoming. The state of Wyoming was still a pioneer state in many ways. True cars were used to a small extent but people still travelled about on horses and mules. Schools were one room contraptions with sometime funny episodes going down. Looking by the Teton Mountsins near Rock Port, there was work in coal mining, and ranching. Wyoming was and is still filled with colorful characters. Wild hors s could be could in the desert.

Stuttering Dick was one guy who when he got older, would travel from ranch to ranch to stay for a few days. He could not do much work but he was entertaining to listen to. He never overstayed his welcome. One day during a blizzard he was caught in the snowfall and froze to death. Some school tales involve a very strict teacher who enjoyed smoking. He went to the outhouse for a smoke and the kids would turn it over or block the door. They sure taught that teacher a lesson. Some of the characters were horses themselves.. One hors was a former race hors called L. He escaped Kentucky and ended up with the horses on a ranch. One of th best horses. Another horse was half and half. They could never catch him but he always ran free and although other horses he was herding with did caught. The famous half and half never got caught.

Wyoming my the horses ran free and wild on the plain. People would herd sheep and horses out on the desert plain. The herders had shelter set up for them to live in. People would capture wild horses and tame them out in the corrals. Eventually the family moved back to South Dakota. Jack and the other 8 brothers would go off and fight in different wars. One of them died fighting in world war 2. His mother died in Wyooming. The father almost died from coal mines. Either way Wyoming makes a lasting impact and stays in your memory. It is a place close to nature.

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Thursday, March 23, 2017

Dark Divinity

Unholy Goddesses of the Dark SideUnholy Goddesses of the Dark Side by Daemon Barzai
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Dark Goddesses

Well if working with the Dark feminine is your thing then this book is for you. I found the book to be easy to read and comprehend. The book does not go into an in depth history and the rituals are easy to follow. Simplicity is something that I rather like. Since the rituals are easy to follow this book is for those who want a direct experience with the Goddesses.
The goddesses come from all the different pantheons. Naamah and Lilith from the Judeo Christian tradition. Dismay and Ereskkigal from the Mesopotamian traditions. There is Kali from the Hindu tradition, along with Qualitu who is a newly emerged Goddess who is either descended from Lilith or an aspect of mask of her. There is also a female deity from Lovecraft lore, Shub Niggurath. We cannot forget that Hecate and Venus are included as well. I apologize to any goddess i forgot to mention.
The format for the book is simple. First the author Damon Barzai , give over some history and things to know about the Goddess. There are roughly three working for each goddess. First is an invocation to the Goddess then an evocation and then a meditation.. The rituals and working can be modified to meet the need. I like to combine evocation with meditation.
The energies these goddesses contain are extremely powerful. The energies are connected with the Eros and the thanatos. The magician must have inner strength and self control to work with these deities.. Many of the working call for black and red candles, dragon blood incense and as a recommends a use of your blood. If you are squeamish then only one of the deities requires bloid. Be wary these deities can be vampiric.

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Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Travels within the Soul of the Goddess

Savage Breast: One Man's Search for the GoddessSavage Breast: One Man's Search for the Goddess by Tim Ward
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Savage Breast is not about a set of breasts on a savage woman, rather it is about ne man’s explorations into the realms of the Goddess. In my eyes it is a three pronged journey. The first prong which is readily distinguishable is about a visiting different sites around the world dedicated to this goddess or that Goddess. The second prong is a journey into the anima of man and how the male anima, or female part of the psyche is stunted. The third prong is a journey into the author’s mind in order for him to confront this own personal issues.

Dealing with the inner issues, the author readily explains his own issues with women. In my mind it seems as though he has a love hate relation with them and he consistently berates himself for seeing them only as sex objects. In the books beginning he can never form satisfactory relationship with a woman. AS a result he ends up having numerous one night stands to fil that ever growing hunger with in. Men seem to see women as mothers or lovers or limit them to certain roles. Men have made women subservient, they have clipped t females wings and limited her power and in doing so have limited themselves in the process and cut their own wings.
While our spirituality would benefit from being more inclusive of the feminine and allowing more room for spiritual leader, I find all this male self-criticism to be a bit problematic. I am not sure if dissing patriarchy is the way to go. Sure we defiantly need more equality, but putting one down over the other is not the answer. Being totally honest I feel that man and women of modern times are spiritually immature and under developed. As an observer of this time frame I find that women can veer towards materialism, manipulation and less than forthright communication. Men suffer from using women for carnal purposes and can be quite rough.

Perhaps my favorite part was about Athena. She may have had her origin on some other Greek isle an she may be a newer version of an older goddess. In a way she is Zeus’s first born with his wife Methis. Like Cronus before him, he swallows his offspring. Athena is born from a headache and in the original version she is sprouting angel wings. The eternal battle hardened virgin, she is a model for many women who have defeminized themselves to make it in man’s world. Of course some of this is understandable because the game is patriarchal, rules written by men t lay many game in a manly sort of way. Tim Ward, the author, always tries to impress this kind of woman an finds himself coming up short. Yet you also learn that women tend to get along better with men than they do other women. As a co-worker of mine states “Women attack other women, they do not go after men” there is a competition between them and when women communicate they’re constantly trying to probe each other mind to find out what they’re thinking.
Tim’s journey leads him to a fruitful relationship after years of research, traveling and hard work. Along the way shrines to goddesses like Gai, Artemis, Aphrodite, Hecate and several Central European goddesses are discussed and visited. They are part of the anima and dwell in each man and in each woman. The Goddesses are part of the soul.

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Thursday, March 9, 2017

Pre-Islamic History of Arabia

Arabia and the ArabsArabia and the Arabs by Robert G. Hoyland
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Arabia and the Arabs

THe period before the Arabian Peninsula adopted Islam is called jahaliya or the age of ignorance. Not much was known before modern archaeologist were able to unearth remnants of those earlier civilizations . THe revealed truths i9s that these civilizations were quite advanced. The societies were not all Arab either. THere were several kingdoms, each with it's own language and culture. It was not until right before that the denizens of Arabia were called Arabs. You see on the South West side of Arabia you had the Sabeans and the Himyarites , just to name a few. On the North Eastern side you had Dimun and a few others. The Arabs were thought to be nomads who roamed the desert with their livestock.

Many of these small kingdoms often times allied themselves with larger empires Botha for political benefit and for material benefit. Empire that the kingdoms allied with were Egyptioans, Mesopotamians, Persians etc. Of times the kingdoms would fight against the nomad Arabs. Their main trade was frankincense which the trade routes connecting to all the empires. THeir religion was simple. They had a plethora of gods and an altar, they would slaughter an animal and shed its blood on the altar. Usually they were asking for something. THeir poems extolled virtues like hospitality and bravery. The weapon they used were spear, arrows and bows. Later they would have leather shields. The book covers every aspect of ARabian life.

It is believed that the breaking of the Maarib damn caused the ARabians to migrate further north. THey would later become the Lakhmids and the Ghassanids. They would adopt lifestyles of the major empires both with intent of integrating but also conquest for their fellow brethren . For any ones interested in ARabian history this book is a must read.

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Monday, March 6, 2017

The Ghosts of Illinois

Ghosts of the Prairie: History & Hauntings of Central IllinoisGhosts of the Prairie: History & Hauntings of Central Illinois by Troy Taylor
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I downloaded this book expecting it to be real heavy on narratives of peopke encountering ghosts or experience of people coming to haunted pkaces. what i got instead was an exhaustive history about various places in Illinois. The author gives the reader an extensive history of a certain place ,even the history of the ghost who might be there. It is light on the ghost experience. At the end of the section the reader is informed that people report seeing an apparition that gives them the chills and then goes away. There is the usual drop in temperature, along with people being touched mysteriously along with items being moved without explanation. I found this book to be more of a history book than a ghost book. i am not complaining. i like reading history and i learnec a lot about the history of Illinois. History is cool and many ghost books would benefit by including the history if various places. Illinois was named after the illinkwet Indians. Many European settlers traipsed through Illinois en route to the west. most who came to settle in Illinois were miners looking for gold. The Mormon came through as well but were driven on to Utah after one of their leaders was killed there. Illinois was known for crime and there is,a lot of crime there on many levels. Everything from bandits and highway robber on through to the mafia and corrupt politicians. Law and order was so scarce out there that vigilante gangs used to catch and hang criminals.a group called the regulators was set up to stop these bandits. Lincolns history out there is extensive as well. The book documents his beginning all the way through to hus assassination and beyond. After he was assasinated his train took his body on a tour so people could wish their president good bye. It is said that a long that route there is a ghost train that goes through even though the teacks are gone. Once Lincoln was buried there were attempts ro steal his body, so a secret society was established to protect his body. The biok not only covers politics and mines, but also hotels, theaters, schools and sanitariums. There are cases if victims being unable to move on, possession and ghosts that just enjoy their place. The book is long and like i said heavy on The history, low on the paranormal.

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Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Rise of the Mchanical Monsters

Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices, #1)Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Clockwork Angel

The story starts off with a demon that is murdering young women. That demon is soon deposed by two brave shadow hunters. Something foul is a foot in Victorian London. Tessa , a young girl from New York, come to London at the behest of her brother. Little does she know what is in store for her. As soon as she steps foot on British soil she is whisked away by the Dark Sisters. Trapped by two evil sisters she is taught to use a new ability she never thought she even had. Shape shifting . She makes several attempts to escape but they all end in failure. The sister are training her for the magister. If she tries to escape her brother will experience harm. It is William Herrondale that rescues her.

Once at the institute Tessa learns her identity, why she was born and some horrifying new secrets. Together her and the clave join forces to rescue her brother and take down the magister. On the way to their adventure they use Tessa's shape shifting ability to infiltrate a vampire coven. They wipe it out. During their quest to find the magister both the clave and Tessa will experience betrayal and shock. Alliances will be broken and new friendships will be forged. The magister is mustering a threat against the clave that magic and sorcery cannot over come. It is a threat that is made of neither heaven or earth. This is not the zombie apocalypse but something close something kind of futuristic. The sanctuary will be attacked and yes the magister will survive for another round.

Lots of teen bonding in this one as young warriors not only fight off vampires, demons and other baddies but also their inner issues. Some have issues with their parents while some have lost their parents . Jem lost his parents to a demon that injects him with a poison that keeps him addicted to demon blood. He needs it like a drug to live. Jem also strikes up an interesting friendship with Tessa, who although undefined is considered a downworlder. This enters a taboo field of triangulation and forbidden love. Much to enjoy here for the young reader.

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Monday, February 20, 2017

Literary History of Trolls

Trolls: An Unnatural HistoryTrolls: An Unnatural History by John Lindow
My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Never before have I seen a book on the history of trolls, but here you finally have it. Trolls are part of the Scandinavian landscape and people seriously believe in them. Tell someone you saw a troll and not only will they not think you are nuts but they will believe you. Of course if your in the cultural milieu tricks of the eye can be interpreted as seeing a mystical creature like a troll. First mentioned in Norwegian -Vikiung Poetry a brave warrior runs into a female troll. Troll have a connection with magic in fact they can even be shape shifters. Trolls will teach people verses and songs but you better remember what they teach you or it could be fatal. Trolls are sometimes conflated with Giants or the Jotunheim. They are also thought t be formerly dead people who wise from the dead. People can be turned into trolls or trolls can shapeshift. They are not to bright.

The author covers trolls all the way through the Earliest trolls going through the Genre of Medieval trolls, folk lore trolls, fairy tale trolls, trolls in literature all the way to the present marketing schemes too sell troll dolls to children. As time progresses the trolls can become bigger and more unbelievable . THey have magic and sometimes witches use them for magical purposes. AS time rolls on the trolls become more benevolent and much cuter. They are not always giant monster , sometimes they are rather diminutive . In their earlier carnation they were portrayed as being quite harmful to people, but as the newer stories come it they become less and less harmful. They get to the point of being helpful too people if the people help them.
In the stories Trolls are depicted as eating people and other animals.

Trolls are definitely members of the fey community, sometimes it is hard t distinguish them from elves and dwarves cause al fairy species were deemed harmful to humans and names of fey species were turned around quite a bit. Somethings about Trolls cannot be attributed to other fey species. OF course trolls are conflated with dragon and the trolls can have multiple heads. When the sun comes up they either explode or turn to stone . Troll legends borrow from Greek mythology. You wil have strikes of where three trolls share the same eye. Much. The three fates from Greek mythology.

In various literatures Trolls are sometimes conflated with witches but mire often than not they are conflated with noon Christian people. Some literature call certain people trolls. Now a days the terms troll refers too different things, like someone who disrupts a group on the Internet and causes problem. Trolls can also be those cute little dolls. The trolls of old evoked fear much like the raggedy homeless person who lives under a bridge, is totally unkempt and may frighten animals and children. The troll has not gone away but it has evolved.

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Friday, February 10, 2017

Toughen up Spartan Style

Spartan Up!: A Take-No-Prisoners Guide to Overcoming Obstacles and Achieving Peak Performance in LifeSpartan Up!: A Take-No-Prisoners Guide to Overcoming Obstacles and Achieving Peak Performance in Life by Joe De Sena
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Mixed Martial arts is the fastest growing sport and right after that are obstacle course marathon’s that test the competitor in a variety of way. This book is about a certain type of obstacle race that is both grueling yet meant to be a vehicle for personal growth. I effect if serves to toughen one up and yet gives more.
The Spartan race is much like obstacle race and yet somewhat more. The competitors will slog thorough waist deep mud, go through ice cold water, crawl under barbed wire and scale a 12 foot wall that is covered with grease. Competitors are left out in the wilderness to find their way back. It developed of the “Death Race” which was far more intense and sometimes life threatening. The Spartan Race is not as dangerous but it is still tough. No less people come to these events in droves.
What drives people to do these somewhat beyond insane races? One is that going through something so tough gives one a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction. Your confidence level goes up so much that anything after the Spartan Race seems easy. It forces you out of your comfort zone. The commitment forces you to train and you are not the same person you were after you cross the finish line.

Spartan Races go beyond just a group of people running an intensely challenging race. They have become a community, a community based on the warrior ideals of Sparta. The competitors goes against each other yet they help each other out. Even while people help each other it also fosters a sense of independence. The Spartan were a warrior society that took the hard way out. The youth were removed from the home at 6 or 7 and then sent to live in the wilderness on their own. It was either sink or swim. It was a rite of passage.

Spartans do not take eth easy way out in fact they go for the most stringent way. There are no shortcut on this path. It is al hard work to make you the best you can be. The author has lots to say in this book that could make your life better even if you do not ever wish to enter a Spartan Race. The author talks about exercise and diet, the two most important medicines to keep you well .He criticizes the alienation of modern kids to nature and slams down the helicopter parents who are so overprotective of their children. They need to toughen up and be ready for the outdoor world. He has a critical view of technology our over reliance on it. Most important of all is development of grit or determination to persevere despite the difficulty and in a nutshell that is hat people need to obtain. You will like this book as it is not a feel good New Agey book.

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Thursday, February 9, 2017

Ghost Town of the Mountain West

Ghost Towns of the Mountain West: Your Guide to the Hidden History and Old West Haunts of Colorado, Wyoming, Idaho, MontGhost Towns of the Mountain West: Your Guide to the Hidden History and Old West Haunts of Colorado, Wyoming, Idaho, Mont by Philip Varney
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Author, Philip Varney, has written like 7 books on Ghost Towns. This book represent kind of like the best of the ghost towns. The guide covers the best ghost towns in Colorado, Wyoming, Idaho, Montana, Utah and Nevada. The ghost town are in various state of repair, some are completely abandoned while some are partially inhabited. Believe it or not some are being regentfrified and rein habited. Other are converted to tourist attracting to bring in money, The author has divided the ghost towns up by state . The author gives a history of the town which includes how it is founded and it’s life over the time and it’s ultimate demise. After the history then you get the low down on what is there for the tourists to see. Finally there are directions on how to get there. Many of these towns have colorful history.

Exploration in the west started after the US purchased the land from France and the Lewis and Clark expedition mapped out the territory. Many people came out looking for silver and gold. The miner’s would come out and settle towns around the mining industry. Once the mines went dry of gold and silver dried up the town’s population would dwindle until it was nothing or almost nothing. The building would fall into various states of disrepair. Things would get worse because vandals would take things or destroy things for whatever reason. These historical landmarks have to be preserved.

The miner and settler faced hostile Native American, sickness and plague. It was definitely the Wild Wild West. I read this book in two days. If checking out ghost towns is your thing then this book is for you. Filled with plenty of color photographs this book makes for a good coffee table book. With the information of history this book is great if you just want to read up on the history of ghost towns then this book is it , even if you do not want to visit a ghost town. Of course after reading this book you will want to visit a ghost town

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Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Mind Your Own Business

Mind Your Own Business: A Maverick's Guide to Business, Leadership and LifeMind Your Own Business: A Maverick's Guide to Business, Leadership and Life by Sidney Harman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Mind Your Own Business

What follows from Sydney Harmon, CHief executive officer of Harmon Kadmon hi if speakers is part auto-biography , part how to run your business. Harmon Kadmon Speakers are used on almost every computer. THey make great hi-if speakers and the company was a pioneering company in making speaker. To start with there are two business models that represent two extremes in the business world. THe old model is top down administration where everything is rigid and creativity is lacking. Things get stuffy. The new model is technology based , very creative. In fact to creative that honesty is forsaken. Profit is the main thing even if the numbers have to be played with. Totally web based. Neither one is a perfect model and each have their flaws which is why Dr. Harmon is advising a third way that combines elements of these two business models.

Dr. Harmon tells how he made money with his paper route and expanded it. He talks about candy shops and how they do business. He talks about how he worked with David Bogen for ten years and he discusses what he learned. During Word War Two he worked in the communications department. After that he would acquire a company with Kadmon. Together they revolutionized the speaker industry by making things sound better and by making the products easier to use. Remember technolgy is subservient to those who need to use it not the other way around. Later he would leave and join the Presidents cabinet as a technolgy minister and when he was done with that he would re acquire the company . He also taught at Friends World College and was involved in the Civl Rights movement when desegragation was being challenged by state . He felt threatened by the racists on several occasasins.
He was 84 when he wrote the short book that has acquired much acclaim.

His belief is that everyone who works for the company is like a jazz quartet , you have to make the music harmonious by listening too everyone. The executive need to know what is going on and see the whole picture. That means they go put on the production floor and do some work there and speak to the people. THe executive is to set an examp-le in integrity and honesty and the rest will follow suit. He believes in building up a quality of life for the employees by providing health care and education. He is against cooking the books t make companies look profitable. If the language is too strange ask the speaker to make it simpler. Writing helps you read your own mind and speeches should be done without liking at the notes.

A refreshing honest approach to business and I am not into business. Honesty is the best policy and this man seems to be a living avatar of that ideal .

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Monday, January 30, 2017

The Most Holy Death

La Santa Muerte: Unearthing the Magic & Mysticism of DeathLa Santa Muerte: Unearthing the Magic & Mysticism of Death by Tomás Prower
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

She is the female grim reaper, worshiped in Mexico among the poor, oppressed and destitute. HEDr veneration has spread here and her followers are not limited to the Latino community but followers from all races. She is popular among criminals, law enforcement, drugs dealers, prostitutes and the lower economic class. What drives people into the arms of La Santa Muerte. For one she is non judge mental . She does not care who you are because death come for us all regardless. She will also answer your petitions with just no judgement. In other words if you ask for it you will get it.

This is in contrast to the practices of Wicca and the three fold law. In Wicca you cannot or are not supposed to do negative magic or magic that will harm someone and if the spirits do not think it is to your benefit then they will not grant your request. La Santa Muerte is different . She answers all your request . Even so the author talks about Karma and the law of equal exchange. If you do negative Magick against someone it will come back to you just the same. There is the law of exchange which means that if you get something you have too give something in return. The author has definitely dipped his feat into the pools of new paganism and immersed himself in the ways of Santa Muerte. The result could be a new path. Most followers of Santa Muerte are of the Catholic persuasion, although anyone can be a follower f Santa Muerte.

Death has been venerated since ancient times and death was not personified as evil, in fact the Greeks thought that Hades was a good guy . The Sumerians worshipped Ereskkigal and the Egyptians worked with her for gay Magic . Pluto was one who gave wealth. The Greeks had the three fates that last one was the crone who cut the cord determining the end of your life. In the Roman Pantheon she was called La Porce.

THe book covers the history of the following of Santa Muerta. At the end there are spells forgo love, money , protection and winning in court. There is a chapter on color correspondences, herbs and incense. The spell are easy to perform and not overly complicated. I also think you can use sme of the knowledge towards working with other deities. This book is great for someone who loves Santa Muerte and it is God for the ne pagan just getting introduced to her. Awesome for beginning and intermediate practitioners of Magic . Great book and I hope the author writes more.Hail Sana Muerte.

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Saturday, January 21, 2017

South Pass Wyoming

South Pass and Its TalesSouth Pass and Its Tales by James L. Sherlock
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This book represent my first foray into American History. It deals with the founding of South Pass in Wyoming. The author , James Sherlock , collected the stories from his blind uncle. Peter , the blind uncle, used to tell tales in front of the hardware shop where he used to work. Despite being blind he knew where everything was in the store.

James Sherlock is an established family member. His relations played an important part in the towns life . They built a hotel, dance hall and several other businesses. His style is to first tell about the towns founding and then look at old houses and building and tell the tales and history associated with that building.

If you are a glutton for detail then this is your book. Not only does he relay the history but he also describes the materials used to build the building and what technique the construction workers used. Most of this went in one eye ball and out the other. many of the tails are amusing and show what life was like back in the early days.

The photographs give you a good picture of what it was like . Log cabins , dirt roads, horse and buggy . It was a land that could be rough yet had law and order. Disputes could be resolved peacefully or someone could get shot. That is how it works. There were threats from marauding Indians and the cold snowy winds of nature . A must read for those who love Wyoming.

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Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Will the Real Monsters Please Stand Up

Monsters Among UsMonsters Among Us by Brad Steiger
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Who are the monsters that roam among us? Is it the vampires, werewolves and other creatures from our folklore? Or perhaps the most dangerous monster of all is mankind. After all I am more frightened of gang bangers, rapists and corrupt politicians than I am of werewolves and vampire. Of course if you are lost in the woods or you are swimming in the sea you might be afraid of some monsters coming out to get you. Back in the day we feared trolls, witches and dragons, that fear has seemed too subside.

There is a thread here. We have monsters that we believe in. This book talks about sea monsters, UFO's, Big foot, dragons, werewolves and vampire . I might have missed a few.
What is the origin of these monsters? Are they products of a fertile imagination? Or perhaps there is a kernel of truth to these legends.Some would say they are survivors from earlier prehistoric times and have managed to stay hidden from mankinds general view. Sea Monster may very well be dinosaurs, or Bigfoot is a hominid remnant of earlier man. Scientists are discovering new species daily. Maybe these creatures exist in another realm or dimension and every so often they traipse into our realm. or their homes could be in caves or deep inside the Earth. The sea is fathom less and deep. It could well be the home of some surviving sea creatures. People report seeing things but gathering proper evidence can be a challenge. In Africa there are legends of Sauropods lurking the jungles. These creatures might be the basis of dragon legends. Of course so could giant snakes and mammoth bones. The Bigfoot or Yeti has been seen the world over. Numerous sightings have been reported yet obtaining solid proof is difficult. These creatures have been known to flee mankind,yet if cornered they will turn aggressive. Native American legends abound with these creatures who are known to hunt men, abduct women and practice a primitive religion. Could these guys be a Neanderthal hold over? Perhaps is such a creature, many descriptions render it similar to Bigfoot. When people used to go hunting or wage war they would wear different animal skins to obtain the animal power. People had rituals that could supposedly turn them into werewolves. Lycanthropia could be a form of psychosis. Vampires may exist but it is the human ghouls who should frighten us. Ghouls devour human flesh. There are stories of french soldiers dining on corpse flesh. A seductress who kills her lovers to dine on them. There is more where that came from. The book discusses in great detail curses, ghosts, the hollow earth theory and more. Ultimately you have to decide if this all real or bunk. What are the origins of these stories and who is the ultimate monster?

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Thursday, January 12, 2017

Transmuting the Tree of Life

Qabala Treatise: How to Navigate the Tree of Life for TransmutationQabala Treatise: How to Navigate the Tree of Life for Transmutation by Jymie Darling
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What should have been a five star book written by a very experienced practitioner who know her stuff comes what could have been an awesome book on using the tree of life to transmute yourself and evolve. I got the kindle version and read it. Great information highly useable but there are several editing issues, especially toward the beginning. Pictures and illustration in several places of the book blot out entire paragraphs or sentences. Guess what you miss out on the information. I would advse that you do not get the kindle version through amazon but rather contact Panpipes magical supply in Hollywood and get the book. Other than that this book has awesome stuff that you can use, I myself took detailed notes cause I am gonna use this stuff.

The beginning of the book tells you ritual foundations and how to design a ritual an it’s phases. The book then goes into the four Qabblsitic worlds and their relation to the tree of life. There is some discussion of the sephirote but it I the thirty two paths that are the meat of this an you are given the tools you need to traverse the path but like a do it yourself kit you have to put it together. At the books beginning there is a correspondence of gods to the sephirot, most of the tree though are cut in half so you lose information. The book covers paths32-11 what happened t the first 10?

The structure I simple the path is discussed along with it’sgoals. Intelligencees are covered, alchemical works, tarots associations are covered along with animals an herbs. I will give example below.

Path 31: Shin the realm of judgment- Fire

Take something and transform it so you can take it in Connects Hod to Malchut. This involves taking stockinto what cn actually be achieved. Learning the new alongside the old. Path of perpetual intelligence cause it regulate the son and the moon.

Virtue: Planning and passion. Vice: Over critical Element is fire

Colors Aziluth: Seeing, Orange scarlet

Beriah: Detached, Vermillion

Yetzirah: Perseptive, Scarlett flecked with gold

Assiah: Caution, Vermillion flecked with emerald and crimson.

Tarot: Judgement

Affirmation: I respond to the universes call of my energy. I feel awakened (or alive) I live a just life

Magic structures: Pyramids, wings, sun, stars, moon

Myths: Study judgement myths, Hestia, Vestia. Vulcan

Herbs: Hyssop, Yarrow, dandelion, Balsam poplar, dragons blood, clove and pepper

Animal s the hawk

Great book to work with, I would advise that if you are a beginner then you should supplement this with other fuller volumes that give more additional insight. This book gets a 4 out of 5. 1 point off from editing errors.

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Monday, January 9, 2017

Another False Messiah

The Mixed Multitude: Jacob Frank and the Frankist Movement, 1755-1816The Mixed Multitude: Jacob Frank and the Frankist Movement, 1755-1816 by Pawel Maciejko
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Frankists were offshoots of the Sabbatian Heresy which began in the Ottoman Empire during the 1500s. After converting to Islam the donmeh broke off into different groups. One such group was the faction under Jacob Frank. Arriving in Podolia in 1755, Frank and his group engaged in a ritual that would shock the lical Jewish community and involve tge Catholic authority. While there behavior was blasphemous tge Catholic clergy sided with the Frankists over the rabbinic establishment. Later Jacib Frank would offer to convert his sect to Catholic religion. Of course they would keep certaun Jewish Practices in tact. They would also ask for territory and tge right to have a militia which could be used against the Ottomans. This fell through. Eventually he would fund himself locked away un a monastery that revered the mother Mary. Eventually he settled in Offenbach where he had a small mini kingdom. He passed from a stroke in 1791.

The book discusses the beginning and growth of the Sabbattian movement that pushes through to greater development of trends in Europe and the Polish Jewish community. For those interested in the donmeh, this book is for you.

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Holy Morroccan Sage engaged in Prayer

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One blond hair blue eyed Calfornian who totally digs the Middle East.
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