The Woman Magician

By Brandy Williams
Reviewed by Katrina Rasbold, Editor

The Magia Femina.  Long has the role of ceremonial mage been male dominated with the role of the female mage often met with a smirking jest.  Ms Williams has yanked this patriarchal art, kicking and screaming, into the 21st century, successfully marrying the many judicious complexities of OTO (Ordo Templi Orienis) and Golden Dawn with both the ancient and post-modern feministic power that permeates Witchcraft.  She details traditional rituals of the ceremonial craft into which she was initiated, but then provides a personal experience section after each, owning her own discomfort with certain aspects of the ritual (the use of the Jewish Star of David and Latin, for instance) and specifying how she modifies the practice to fit in with her own beliefs.

Her knowledge of ceremonial craft is tremendous and her explanations of each ritual are understandable and reader-friendly.  Clearly, the author has a broad spectrum knowledge of pertinent aspects of history, philosophy, magic, theology and culture which blends seamlessly together into an explanation of the evolution of ceremonial magic over time and an understanding of the emergence of male and female roles and archetypes.  She then takes that educated understanding and stands it on its ass by integrating it beautifully into a vision of the science of magick through a feminist perspective. She goes backward through time and embraces all that we know, but shifts the lighting so that the power and presence of feminine empowerment becomes of greater focus and equal importance.  Basically, she shows us in exquisite detail all that we do know about the emergence of this form of magick and then flips the exposure and shows us all that we don’t know about it.  Her deft and masterful handling of the integration of magick and feminism is nearly breathtaking.

Ms Williams takes on gender roles in society and integrates that particular construct into a powerful guidebook for women who have felt drawn to the altar of ceremony, but once they arrived, could not adequately embrace their own femininity and personal strength due to the overwhelming masculine claim on the craft.  I highly recommend this book for any woman (or man) who would like to take their own practice and understanding of the gender aspects of magick to the next level.

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