Witches and Pagans

The Fates I fathom, yet farther I see / See far and wide the worlds around. Völuspá, Icelandic Edda

witches dancing around the tree of benevento, runic carvngs, goddesses

woman riding on goatThe spiritual heritages of pagan Europe: wisewomen, healers, seers, enchantresses and nightfarers. We'll look at folk names for the witch, and female sacraments of spinning, weaving, herbcraft, divination, incantation and sacred dance. Fatas, faeries, and the “good women who go by night” with the Old Goddess: Diana, Holle, Nicnevin, Abundia, Andra Mari, Perchta. Though the bishops fought to suppress it, this ancient veneration persisted in Europe: Norns, the Weird Sisters, Befana, faerie godmothers, Eorthan Mother and her serpents, Sapiente Sibillia, the Baba Yaga, Diana—and shamanic myths of the witches' flight and ecstatic dances.

a visual talk by Max Dashu

90 minutes, with extra time for discussion. Requires digital projector, screen
or white wall, mic, and extension cables where necessary


Advance excerpts from Dashu's forthconing Secret History of the Witches:


Herbs, Knots, and Contraception in the Early Middle Ages

The Old Goddess

Tregenda of the Witches

The Politics of Witchcraft

More of her articles on this subject at Academia.edu


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