Behind the Broom: What the Books Don't Tell You

Witchcraft Philosophies, Action, Leadership, Humor, Outrage, Awkward Mishaps, Lovable Lessons, and a search for Grace with a clumsy Witch.

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Courtney Weber

Courtney Weber

Courtney Weber is a Priestess, writer, Tarot Advisor, performer and activist originally from Portland, OR living in New York City.She is the High Priestess of Novices of the Old Ways, a Progressive Wiccan and Pagan Coven and community. Her writings on Witchcraft have been published in numerous publications. She host public Circles in the city, teaches locally and nationally, and is available for Tarot consultation. Her first book "Brigid: History, Mystery, and Magick of the Celtic Goddess" will be released by Weiser Books in February, 2015.

My Coven was tired.

We had been busy--for years, actually. Between leading public rituals and attending festivals, there was a mess of parties thrown by other Coveners. Several members were performers of different kinds and had shows. A couple of people started teaching locally. Then there was our standard working group time. Like "good" Coveners, we traveled to the festivals together, attended the parties, formed cheering sections at the shows and dutifully attended the classes our members led. We somehow still found the time to offer rituals and work as a group, but not a lot. I felt badly offering Coven homework when we were already such a busy group.

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  • Philipp Kessler
    Philipp Kessler says #
    Two things. First, I just received a copy of your book from the publisher. Looking forward to reading it. Second, an earlier art
  • Courtney Weber
    Courtney Weber says #
    Hi Phillipp! The earlier article you mentioned was not written by me, but by Hilary Parry. Thanks for stopping by!
  • Philipp Kessler
    Philipp Kessler says #
    Ah, my apologies. I had misremembered who wrote it. I do hope that you get a chance to read what I write anyway. And looking forw

Posted by on in Paths Blogs

b2ap3_thumbnail_nametag.jpgMy suitcase still isn't unpacked. My brain isn't, either. Several other writers have already blogged about this past weekend's Pantheacon and eloquently so. I needed more time. 

First of all, it was great. I spent most of my party time in the Black Rose Witchcraft Suite (thank you Devin Hunter for the laughs at night and the headaches in the mornings) and my worky-work time attending rituals, classes on rituals, and discussions on issues surrounding racism in our beloved community. I met new friends in those rituals (#heygwion) and even sat on a panel, myself! "Turning the Wheel: Nurturing Young Leaders and Embracing Change" led by Thorn Coyle. It was more than an honor to be up there with such incredible minds. 

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Blessed Darkness....Soothe now my Burned Soul,
In the Cooling Blanket of Your Blackness,
Alleviate my Blistered Heart....

Twice a year, my Coven takes Dark Time. We do not meet or lead rituals. I do not email our broader community. These two time periods take place Yule-Imbolc and Lughnasadh-Mabon. We are a very public, hard-working group and these two breaks are indelibly helpful to our work. I still assign Craft homework during this period, and this period's assignment was to treat this time as more than a few more free Saturdays on our calendars. Each of us would need to surrender something in our lives and actively use the newly gained time to pursue individual rest.

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  • Molly
    Molly says #
    Really appreciated this and the link to the "delegate" article as well.

Posted by on in Paths Blogs

b2ap3_thumbnail_boar.jpgBefore I sat down to write this, I had to wash the blood off my hands.

Seriously. I did.

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  • Karen Wheeler
    Karen Wheeler says #
    This is a good and honest article. You did a good job of looking into the heart of things. I agree with Jim's relation of how it w
  • Courtney Weber
    Courtney Weber says #
    Thanks so much, Karen! I appreciate your thoughts!
  • Jim
    Jim says #
    I like the way the Iroquois (translation - the Humans) approached having to kill other living beings whether plant, or animal (inc
  • Courtney Weber
    Courtney Weber says #
    Thank you, Jim! I didn't know that about fruit--very interesting. I appreciate your kind comment!
  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    Thanks Courtney, for a well-written, compassionate, and even-handed post on a subject that often sends people off the deep end one

Dear Friends,

Effective immediately, please stop telling me to delegate.

Thanks so much.

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  • Molly
    Molly says #
    I am intimately familiar with many of these points! Thanks!

It's a pleasantly cool August night, and my partner and I are drinking Mojitos on the patio, the laughter from our friends drift up from the pool. Once in awhile, we hear the melodic chants of the guest Coven, raising energy in the new sacred space we carved out in the woods just last week. The lights are dim in the freshly painted cabins, as some of the greatest minds in contemporary Paganism arrived last night to circle and discuss Magickal and theological gems. Within the walls of our sacred Pagan space, we have no need to explain ourselves. Trees get hugged, and there's no eyebrow raising. The Fey get their due respect without reminders. The Unicorns are only ever fed with the produce from our collective garden and Peter Dinklage makes a nightly stop to simply have a chat and sometimes lets us ride his pet dragon around the area. It's a great place.

a1sx2_Thumbnail1_PeterD.jpg

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  • Phaedra Bonewits
    Phaedra Bonewits says #
    I've never quite understood why people think that it's not ok to pay to take a class, but it's ok for a teacher to pay out of pock
  • Courtney Weber
    Courtney Weber says #
    Thanks, Phaedra! It's an important conversation. Nothing is ever truly "free."



a1sx2_Thumbnail2_qmi2.jpg“Peace and Blessings!”

If you’ve had a phone consultation with the Queen Mother Imakhu, you’re sure to recognize the trademark greeting, along with the joyful cackle. This time, I wasn't following my usual "Call The Queen Mother!" routine which usually involves bringing her a dream for interpretation or seeking guidance in untangling a leadership knot. This time, I was seeking to make her the subject of a blog post, hoping to speak about the nuts and bolts of Priestesshood.

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