Skip to content
Paperback The Spiral Dance: A Rebirth of the Ancient Religion of the Great Goddess Book

ISBN: 0062508148

ISBN13: 9780062508140

The Spiral Dance: A Rebirth of the Ancient Religion of the Great Goddess

Select Format

Select Condition ThriftBooks Help Icon

Selected

Format: Paperback

Condition: Good

$6.99

1 Available

Book Overview

This description may be from another edition of this product. The twentieth anniversary edition of The Spiral Dance celebrates the pivotal role the book has had in bringing Goddess worship to the religious forefront. This bestselling classic is both an...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

A Provocative and Valuable Resource

The Spiral Dance remains one of the most important and influential books on modern American NeoPaganism and one that I highly recommend. Starhawk essentially married some core Wiccan beliefs and practices to the social and political ideas of the 70s -- feminism, environmentalism, gay rights, civil rights, and the peace movement. In doing so, she created a new path that is less concerned with secrecy and tradition and more with a sustainable future. Her tradition continues to thrive. Many criticize Starhawk unfairly, forgetting that The Spiral Dance was published in 1979 and is clearly a product of its time. Starhawk makes no distinctions between Paganism, Wicca, and Witchcraft, but few writers did in the 70s. She also presents Wicca as an ancient religion and the Burning Times as a persecution of Witches. These ideas have since been debunked, but they were prevalent at the time. Starhawk is well aware of this and she revisits these issues in her commentary. With The Spiral Dance, Starhawk presented an entirely new model of spirituality in an era where there were scarcely any models of women's spiritual power and leadership. It may be hard to see now just how mind altering the very concept of a Goddess is, but at the time, it was a radical, illuminating idea. So, yes, Starhawk spends a lot of time talking about the Goddess and what a liberating path this is for women. But by no means is this a women-only book. On the contrary, Starhawk emphasizes that Wicca is for everyone and is clear about her position: that a female-only model of the universe would prove to be as constricting and oppressive, to women and men, as the patriarchal model has been. Chapters deal with the basics of Starhawk's flavor of Wicca -- world view, initiation, the coven, creating sacred space, magical symbols, energy, initiation, moon rituals, the God, the Goddess, and the Wheel of the Year. The Spiral Dance also includes over 60 exercises, invocations, chants, blessings, spells, and herbal charms that are easily adapted to solitary or group work. Even if some of the information is outdated, The Spiral Dance remains a poetic, intelligent, and inspiring work.

marvelous - and extremely useful

The Spiral Dance is magnificient - I cannot recommend this book highly enough. Starhawk has done a truly outstanding job of providing the reader with an excellent groundwork for an introduction to wicca, providing invocations, rituals and meditations. But what I found most useful were her numerous mental exercises designed to develop awareness, improve visualization and meditaiton techniques. They have been extremely valuable to me.Starhawk discusses the various aspects of Witchcraft at length as well, which is also useful reading. Chapters are devoted to the Goddess, the God, summoning and grounding energy, casting - everything one would expect in a book for beginner practioners but with much more depth in explaining the "whys" rather then simply the "hows."I would only add that the book is a little "advanced" for many new to witchcraft or wicca - the writing is pretty mature and techincal, albiet very good. If you have read Cunningham or Sliverwolf (who are both good), and are looking for something a little more mature, this would be my first choice. Enjoy! And bright blessings.

Absolutely Essential Pagan Reading

The Spiral Dance is a complex myriad of thoughts, dreams, creation and spiritual exercises that can challenge even the most experienced magical practicioners. This is not a light'n'fluffy read, definitely not a basic introduction to witchcraft, wicca or paganism in any of its forms. For many years, this book was the only widely available text on the Great Goddess religion and, with two updates to the original work, remains relevant to this day. This book challenges the reader to take their spiritual path more seriously and can be a truly life-changing and mind-expanding experience. All readers will find exercises to suit them, as there are plenty to choose from. The feminist aspects teaches respect for the feminine to both men and women, being honest and confronting without going to excess. I'd recommend this to anyone seeking to find/understand themselves and their spiritual path, however this is not really a starting point but a way to expand your knowledge and practices. Beginners would be better off looking at Scott Cunningham and Jennifer Hunter first. Starhawk's book goes into more depth on the Goddess aspect and on meditation and ritual, and it is useful to have a little grounding in the basics before moving into more complex intellectual and experiential territory. Fiona Horne's books are also great basic guides, with extra information for those of us in the southern hemisphere.

every witch should read it

I was stunned when I read some of these reviews that were critical of Starhawk's celebration of the female (feminism, the earth (ecology), and political action.) The backlash against women's liberation is upon us surely....and as someone who ran a battered women's shelter for 15 years, I know what the backlash looks like.. No, you cannot separate Starhawk's feminism or devotion to preservation of the earth, the rivers, the ocean, and other species from her witchcraft. Nor should you. This is part of her dynamic, fascinating, compelling message that has drawn countless people into becoming a witch. The first book I read was Margot Adler's Drawing Down the Moon. The second was Z Budapest's the Holy Book of Women's Mysteries (which IS female centered and exclusively female). The third was the Spiral Dance. The Spiral Dance is very specific about spells, rituals, and how to practice. It's a basic book about witchcraft. I keep returning to it, when I need to dedicate an athame, or practice grounding. Every witch should read it. Thank the Goddess for Starhawk. Otherwise, I would have been stuck with rules about requiring male/female polarity in my rituals. I would have been told (as I have been by others) that if I don't circle with men I can't be a witch. Etc. etc. etc. Ironic, isn't it, that Starhawk is in a mixed gender coven, now practices with her husband, etc. etc. But to the anti-feminists, all focus on the female must be anti-male. It does get tiring. I also highly recommend Truth or Dare to all witches. Blessed be! Susan McGee Northern California

this book got me hooked on Wicca

This is one of the first books I read on Wicca, and it blew my socks off! Every third or fourth page, I thought, "This is me! This is how I feel about things. I'm not alone anymore!" For me, this book was transcendent. It changed my life for the better. That it centers on the Goddess is not an issue for me, and should not be for others either, IMHO. Her idea of Goddess encompasses the God. Anyway, I don't like attaching a gender to Deity, but that is just me I guess. Excellent book. I highly recommend it to those seeking information on what it _means_ to be a witch.
Copyright © 2020 Thriftbooks.com Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Do Not Sell My Personal Information | Accessibility Statement
ThriftBooks® and the ThriftBooks® logo are registered trademarks of Thrift Books Global, LLC
GoDaddy Verified and Secured