When I am not sure how to deal with something I marinate on it. This means I sit around thinking through what has happened or been done or said and then respond. Months and months ago, a review for Family Coven: Birthing Hereditary Witchcraft was posted.
I read it and was wholly offended by portions and understood other points. Ultimately I didn’t respond to the review when I knew there were several factual errors in the review and omissions that would have shed a different light on the review.
After posting about qualifications on Monday, I decided it was time to set the record straight and found the comment section on this article closed. SO… I get to do it here.
Witchcraft, Wicca, Paganism
I am not going to continue this debate. The author suggests that I am confused. I am not. I understand the alleged distinction between these three terms and I categorically reject them. I feel like these distinctions are most often used by traditional Craft to further divide our community.
Inexperience & Idealism
It is true I only had one child. It is also true that I have a bachelor of science degree in psychology and that a portion of every chapter of my book was written by different families of different types and make ups. Further it is true that the initial writing of the book occurred when Tree Bear (please note the appropriate name), was younger and the book was re-worked when Tree Bear was nearly sixteen.
I stand by what I said when Tree Bear was three through seven and there are some things I would have done differently that are directly related to my personal journey and the personal journey of my Family Coven. None of this detracts from the fact that the ideas presented in this book were not only tested in my Family Coven. Many different families utilized the tools I suggested and gave me feedback long before the book was published and for me this gives the information a much more grounded perspective than if this was just “my idea.”
Further I took great pains to research, study and research different types of parenting and learning styles that are presented in the book. All of which seems to be missing from the author’s judgement of my experience.
Children In Ritual
This biggest issue the author takes is around my assertion that communities should make room for children. She jumps right into the fray about how children’s presences isn’t appropriate in ALL rituals and completely blows by the fact that the last chapter of this book actually charges parenting partner(s) with the responsibility of ensuring a child’s readiness to participate in community events (Family Coven, page 263-269). Many of these points can actually be read on line on the Willow Dragonstone Community website. This particular article in some form has been reprinted numerous times and has been complimented as an excellent guideline regarding children and ritual or children and gathering attendance.
To be clear, I don’t care if someone doesn’t prefer my view point of family and craft which I have termed Family Coven. I do care, however, if criticisms are inaccurate and incomplete. Anyone can take one sentence out of a book and build a rant about a book to suit their view point and opinion, especially if they leave out points that would counter the stated argument. I have learned long ago that paganisms many flavors are not savored by everyone and I see nothing wrong with that.
I also know that it is a radical thing to empower families to behave as a spiritual entity first before joining with community. I understand that it can be idealistic to hope that someday a book of shadows created by you might be cherished by another. I also understand that questioning the unilateral authority of traditional covens is offensive to those who hold power.
I can live with all of that. Just get my son’s name right and don’t leave out important information and we will be all good.