Magical Religion and Modern Witchcraft
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Provides an overview of neo-paganism from the Goddess to magic and rituals, from history and ethics to the relationship of neo-paganism to Christianity.
This comprehensive anthology examines contemporary neo-paganism ranging from goddess theology to historical-critical essays. Many of the contributors are academically trained neo-pagans, and the resulting volume is a benchmark study of a significant movement that promises to reshape the religious landscape of the next century.
James R. Lewis is Chairperson of the Department of Religious Studies at the World University of America. He has edited several academic anthologies, including The Gods Have Landed: New Religions from Other Worlds and, with J. Gordon Melton, Perspectives on the New Age , both published by SUNY Press. He has also authored a series of scholarly reference works on occult-religious topics, which have earned American Library Association and New York Times Book Awards.
"I feel this book is a very well-rounded exposure to growing special interest groups--from the Goddess to Magic and Rituals, from History and Ethics to Christianity and Neo-Paganism. It demystifies modern witchcraft, and shows it to be a modern reconstruction of a few ancient elements with many new innovations added by certain romantic personalities. Every article by its investigative nature is insightful and certainly of intellectual importance. " -- Kevin A. McCormack, World University of America (Ojai)
"Today we see an ever increasing number of New Religious Movements emerging that are strange to the general public. What is strange, unknown, or not understood, is often frightening. What is frightening often leads to conflict similar to that of the burning of the Branch Davidians in Waco, Texas by our government officials.
"Many religious scholars have told me of their hunger for inside information. When I speak to groups of average citizens, I am pleased to note their extreme interest in this matter. This entire anthology, to me, is enough to stimulate my appetite. I find it to be refreshing in my search and studies by being able to compare the different points of view of the contributors in a single source. " -- Moorman Oliver, Jr. , Retired Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Criminal Investigator
"Dr. Lewis has located a whole seminar-full of new blood, new scholars who know the groups they are discussing both inside and out. This is a refreshing change from the old-guard religion scholars who are often somewhat baffled by the new religions they have been studying. " -- Aidan A. Kelly, Art Magickal Publications