moonvoice: (calm - woodland path)
[personal profile] moonvoice posting in [community profile] the_animist
This question was offered up by the awesome [personal profile] tsukikokoro.

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What, if any, texts do you rely on for spiritual guidance? Have those texts changed over time? Are there any you're interested in exploring in the future?

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As always, feel free to answer here, in your own journal, or both! Discussion is welcome and encouraged. :)

Date: 2012-09-21 03:20 am (UTC)
azhure: (quote cup of tea big enough book long en)
From: [personal profile] azhure
Heh, I totally used to do the same in Dymocks/Magic Circle/A&R. Man, I miss Magic Circle. Except for the random stands of romance novels they used to have. I never knew what was up with that.

You're always welcome to borrow any of my books, too. I've collected a bunch of the recommended OBOD texts. And will likely get more, knowing me ;)

Date: 2012-09-17 01:11 am (UTC)
barbary: (Books)
From: [personal profile] barbary
I... am a book-hoarder. There are only a handful of texts that I read and reread in terms of spiritual guidance, some of which are no longer applicable to my practice but I still emotionally resonate with. (I just went to my bookshelf to grab some names as examples, but got overwhelmed by the stacks, so um, maybe another day?)

And there are dozens, quite literally, of texts that I keep around for A) reference or B) because I haven't plonked down to read them all the way through yet. I am terrible about eagerly acquiring a book and then letting it sit on the shelf for a very long time, until it occurs to me to read it. And in getting into Kemetic recon, oh my have I gotten some fabulous thick books on ancient Egypt and Egyptian mythology; you can see the entire list here. I feel quite guilty about not reading books as soon as I get them (it feels wasteful/ungrateful to me) and have pretty strictly limited my book-collecting habits until I read more of what I've got. ^^;

Overall, my taste in books have gone from New Age/Wiccan to more eclectic pagan and shamanic texts to more heavily reconstructive/historical books nowadays. I can definitely appreciate non-recon books, but they have to be heart-strong without fluff for me to really get into them anymore. I tend to find more of that on blogs/websites than in mainstream published books... though I do have a wishlist of Celtic and druidic texts (some of which were gleaned from OBOD's and ADF's recommended reading lists) for when I have the money and reading-time for them. I've been steeping in Kemeticism for over a year now, and I'd like to balance that with my other main area of interest. I don't have a lot of animistic books that lack a cultural flavor (mine are largely Celtic), but I do have some general energywork ones that I'm looking forward to curling up with, as well.

Date: 2012-09-21 03:21 am (UTC)
azhure: (Default)
From: [personal profile] azhure
Oh! Thank you for sharing that book list. I suspect that I'll be making some purchases based on that :)

Date: 2012-09-21 12:30 am (UTC)
faolchu_rua: (Default)
From: [personal profile] faolchu_rua
I haven't been relying on texts as much as I used to. In part this stems from the sheer amount of reading I do for graduate work; I get burned out from staring at the screen or the page. There's also a certain degree of feeling a bit "gunshy" about reaching out to spiritual books again. The works I read in adolescence have generally been dismissed as culturally insensitive, out-dated, or -- I'll use the word used above -- mindless "fluff", by my acquaintances better versed in such things; I'm not really sure where to turn now. Usually personal experience has been enough, and I don't claim my spiritual experiences to be anything more than a form of meditation, since I know myself to be... well, something of a neophyte in terms of actual research; and don't want to be appropriating anything I really don't have the knowledge about/right to claim as my own.

This actually inspired me to take a moment to review what few books I still have on my shelf.
-- The much maligned Ted Andrews Animal-Speak has collected dust,
-- Michael Harner's Way of the Shaman seems to have done the same,
-- something called Weather Shamanism by Nan Moss and David Corbin, who appear to be Harnerites -- I don't think I ever actually read this one?
-- A couple books on spiritual shapeshifting; the one by Perkins grabs at my memory a bit, I believe I got about half way through, the one by Rosalyn Greene, much less so? Fairly self-help oriented, I believe.
-- One I picked up much more recently for a paper; Shamanism in the Interdisciplinary Context a collection of papers from a conference held in Estonia in 2001. I know I've read through a couple of the articles in here and enjoyed them.
-- The World of Shamanism: New Views of an Ancient Tradition by Roger Walsh. Don't remember much of this one either.

Huh. I thought I had more, but maybe I got rid of most of the fluffy... with the exception of the more nostalgia-bound volumes which held meaning for me at one point, even if I can't really bring myself to use/believe/respect them any more for various reasons. I know I had a copy of a revised edition of Eliade at some point, though it doesn't seem to have come to Pittsburgh with me.

Edited Date: 2012-09-21 12:31 am (UTC)

Date: 2012-09-21 03:17 am (UTC)
azhure: (Art Windling story tree)
From: [personal profile] azhure
I have had this post open for days trying to formulate a decent reply. The truth is that I am slightly obsessed with books in general, and pagan-themed books none the less.

I have a full floor-to-ceiling bookshelf that is most filled with pagan books, far too many of which I haven't actually read. Which is something that I am trying to work on.

I've read my way through a seriously eclectic set of spiritual and pagan texts. I started, I believe, on Cunningham, and still have some fondness for his books. I will admit to owning ever pagan book that Fiona Horne has written (except the ones aimed at teens) and, while she can be fluffy at times, I still find some truths in what she writes.

Phyllis Currot's work still resonantes with me strongly, though I don't walk the same spiritual path as she does.

I have what is becoming a fairly stupid list of unread books on Druidry, which is my current path. I really, really have liked/enjoyed/found useful Emma Restall Orr's books. And anything written by Ronald Hutton is pretty much academic crack to me. I'm still working on completing my collection of his texts.

Date: 2012-11-20 11:52 pm (UTC)
spider_fox: (Default)
From: [personal profile] spider_fox
Dunno if this counts, but folktales that I find in books and online for the cultural/geographical reagions I focus on (Central Europe and US Great Lakes). They do tend to be heavily Christianized, but often are the only remnants of low-class or common pagan ideas from their respective regions, and with a little bit of study I've managed to pick out a lot of info and reccuring themes that I've found useful for my customs.

Date: 2012-11-20 11:55 pm (UTC)
spider_fox: (Default)
From: [personal profile] spider_fox
Oh yes, and ecology-related texts. Even though they're not intentionally pagan, I do find that the interconnectivity concept useful, and often the authors share a similar love and awe for the natural world as I do through my beliefs.

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