A Good Book

GoddessChronicleDark Time is fantastic for getting caught up on reading. I picked up this little treasure randomly at Morningside Books. I’d heard recently that reading fiction makes you a better writer, no matter your genre, and I was itching to read something new. I’d never heard of author Natsuo Kirino. I’m not well-versed in Japanese lore, so it was a chance to educate myself while taking a break from the regular Magick veins for a bit.

The Goddess Chronicles is a delicious and heartbreaking journey for a young, unwitting Priestess of Darkness who finds herself the unwitting handmaiden for the Goddess of the Dead. The tale follows several characters, including the Goddess, through life, love, death, heartbreak, revenge, and embraces shape-shifting and Shamanism. Kirino is a fiction noir writer by trade, so she effortlessly weaves mystery in and out of the Japanese creation myths of Izanami and Izanaki.

If you’re attracted to Underworld Deities, this is a great one to pick up. If you’ve avoided or not yet explored Underworld Gods, this one should probably be on your must-read list. No truly successful Witch can work with only light or darkness–our power comes from understanding both. This book snaps that up so buy it, read it, and let me know what you think!

A Good Album

ZakirI was also in need of some new-to-me tunes. Yesterday, on NPR, I heard an interview with Zakir Hussain, known as the tabla player who played with the Grateful Dead. Zakir is not a newbie by any means, but I’d never heard him play or speak, on his own. I immediately liked this guy for not only his talent, but his fearlessly embracing himself. While he wanted to be a standard rock drummer, George Harrison wisely pointed out that he would only be one in 1,000 just like him….whereas sticking with what he knows would make him a unique entity in the world of rock that he loved so much. We all so often quickly shed what comes naturally to us and embrace something “cooler,” forgetting that what we do naturally is considered “EXTREMELY COOL” by someone else.

cover170x170I particularly love this treasure: The Melody of Rhythm, which he recorded with Bela Fleck and a symphony orchestra. It tickles my love for tabla, orchestral music and my own Appalachian roots. It’s good subway-commuter music. I like instrumental music as it leaves mental room to read and write on the train.

A Good Cause

NALI’m always in the mood for a good cause. I can think of few better causes than ones dealing with books and Witchcraft. For years, the Assembly of the Sacred Wheel has been a good community of friends to me and for as long as I’ve known them, they’ve been intent on building The New Alexandrian Library, a research and reference facility focused on Magick and the Occult. It will contain a mammoth collection of rare papers, books, and other items. Part museum and part research center, it’s about time the USA had something of this nature!

The walls have been raised, the floors and doors are in place. This building has been completely funded by donations and owes no loans of any sort. This is a slow way to build, but a solid way to ensure it will last. You can read more about it and donate here!

Join me in wishing these fine Witches well on this extraordinary venture! And drop a couple of bucks their way, if you can!