This anthology explores magical, occult, and esoteric topics from the view points of practitioners who are disabled, part of the deaf and Blind communities, or have an illness or addiction. Though the voices collected here come from diverse social, magical, and national backgrounds, they don’t represent every individual’s story. The only way to understand the personal history and feelings of any one is to share in open dialogue.
One purpose of this anthology is to help those struggling with a disability, injury, illness, or addiction find comfort in the fact that they are not alone. Some of the authors, like myself, turned to a magical practice as a way to find healing and the anthology included rituals and stories about healing. Covens, circles, temples or any other type of magical group can use it as a resource toward understanding members or potential members with disabilities. There are interviews with professional counselors, including Drake Spaeth, previously with Circle Sanctuary, about assisting Pagans and magic practitioners that are useful to anyone in the medical profession. Those interviewed also include Dee of PaganFM, author Janet Callahan, and Kimberly Kirner, PhD who conducted the Pagan Health Survey I and II.
Here is an excerpt from the introduction:
As incarnate individuals we all struggle with injury and illness of some sort and there are those who are born with the privilege of being healthy and staying that way for a long time. People with disabilities, chronic illnesses, or addictions don’t have that privilege. Maybe they did at one time. The fact that their health was lost shows how quickly life can change and how fragile our bodies can be. However, the way they face daily inner or physical pain shows people can have a constitution tempered like steel.
“I believe we can either wear our challenges the way we wear pants, burdened by limitations. Or we can treat our challenges as cracks in the sidewalk, things that are surmountable, and which we can grow around… Magick can help us grow up and around our challenges.” –“Tangible Magick” by Lady Cedar Nightsong
Lydia M. Crabtree writes that “Nature seems to say, ‘Adapt.’ It is, in fact, the very basis of evolution. As one form of adaptation is no longer needed, another rises to take its place and be utilized for the greater good.
“If nature is encouraging us to adapt, then there are several adaptations those of us with disability should take on. First, we should adapt an attitude of loving acceptance that we are as we should be. Whether our disability comes from unhealthy living, accidents, wars, genetic defect or disease doesn’t impact our wholeness.”
I’ve enjoyed working with each contributor and my editor Taylor Ellwood of Megalithica Books and author of Pop Culture Magik and Space/Time Magic. The book will be published in late 2013 or early 2014. If you would like to be notified when it’s ready, please e-mail me at tara.miller21 (at) gmail dot com.