So, I know a lot of you don't really like Silver RavenWolf, and I myself can tell which parts of her writing I've read are filled with useful information and which parts are really more for popularity, but I looked at the back of my Teen Witch book (only book on Wicca I own personally, it's a RavenWolf book), and there's, like the backs of most books, ads for more books. Well, the last ad is called "Teen Witch Kit" and it's $24.95. Well, I haven't read the description all the way yet, but I saw the "this product contains" list and some of the things seemed unnecessary. Like, "spell salt"--you don't really need a special salt to use in your magick. Just regular, natural sodium chloride will do. Like, "spell salt"? My mother has been Wiccan throughout most of her life and has gone back to it, her husband is Wiccan, I've read a lot in books and the internet about magick, and I've talked to plenty of magick practitioners on these forums, and I have never heard of "spell salt". I've had this book for ten years, though I never really looked at the back and only recently began to truly read it. But there's also a "golden coin"--I honestly don't think you need--or that they would sell a real--hold coin. And then there's a yes/no coin. Can't just any coin do for yes or no? A penny, a yen, a collectors coin, or even those heads tails coins in starter kits for Naruto CCG card games could do, right? Is this just the publisher trying to make money? Like, I don't get it. But whatever.
It is. We all started somewhere and most weren't so lucky to have a parent or close relative who could guide them. All they had to go on is movies and the first book they found on the shelf. I was lucky to find Scott Cunningham first, but others meet Ravenwolf or worse. I read this one book when I was trying to learn about Celtic Paganism, the first chapter was the author telling the reader that "unless you are an Irishman, born in Ireland, and speak Gaelic, then you are not a true Irishman and therefore cannot learn about the Celtic religion". Imagine if this was the first book you read about your path?
Sometimes Llewellyn is aware they have the occult market cornered, and most first time readers gravitate to Silver Ravenwolf, so it might be bad karma, but good marketing if you can advertise some kind of "starter kit" for the new witches. Mind you, if you actually read the book, instead of skimming, you would know that it isn't needed. I guess you could view it as a life lesson to not trust everything you read.
I have no respect for her as an author whatsoever, she knows she is the most popular 'Wiccan' author out there for newcomers to the path and she milks it!
Never publish another book full of rehashed information. If it is not bringing anything new to the table, it is worthless.
You are correct- you do not need those thing at all. What you do need you can certainly improvise around. If a so-called witch complained they could not do a spell because they have no special salt from the dead sea- they aren't much of a witch!
Remember who it is advertised for- teens. And quite frankly her simple writing style can be understood by an eleven year old- so young teens!
Young teens want to think they are cool and their practice is unique. If she says it is salt- they will think "Oh, that's boring!" or "I can get that at home". But now they think "Spell salt! Wow it is magical! It will make me so much more powerful".
She knows what she is doing. I would almost put her in the same league as those new agers who claim they do it for the love, yet live in massive houses instead of being comfortable and donating to charity!
I mean if you want money, fine. Just don't lie about your intentions!
Another angle for it is that the items may be completely mundane, or even contrived for the purpose, but for some it may be just the thing to get them in the right mindset, until they learn they do not need "spell" salt for example. I'm not saying it will work that way for everyone who purchases the kit.
It's similar to people who think a more expensive pen will get them to write more legibly. The pen will not make the person's writing any better, but the person may be inspired to work on improving their handwriting, or strive to write more legibly with that pen because of what it is. Then again, there will always be those who blame the pen and not themselves.
I have never read a Ravenwolf book, and I was one of the lucky few who found Scott Cunningham.
The thing is, I have respect for her, but I in know means, approve of her views, or points. She is popular with beginner's, and she coats it to much. I still respect her as a person, but she is hateful to other religions and in a reality she is almost bringing our veiw's bad press again, by being negative.
Honestly that teen witch kit, it may work. But it's not even needed. We don't know if were waisting money, or if it will work. So why try something, that may not be worth it? I agree with hadit, she makes a good view and point. Blessed be.
Also what's the point in buying the kit? I wasn't a lucky one who had family to help me, and I was ten years old when I started. I was never like the others saying witchcraft was horrible, or spells are needed to get everything to come true. I learned at an early age when I started the craft, that I would have to improvise, and learn to adapt with what I have. I was in the broom closet until last year, and even now my parents don't fully know what I'm doing.
Some of these ''magical kits'' are not even real, there fake and you can find half the stuff at an occult store, shoppers, or even in your own home. Some things I notice, is that some newbies are only joining paganism, or Wicca, to do spells, and to scare people. I had one person say that to be a true wiccan, you need to know everything, and be able to cast spells. I had messaged back saying that was his view, and I stated mine. I realized at an early age that some will just get onto this to look ''cool'' or be a scary person.Well first off, doing this religion, or buying things to make you look '''cool'' is wrong, and is not tolerated. I had an example of someone saying she only joined paganism to be able to do fantasy spells. I told her that she wouldn't get very far for the pagan religion is not a free for all, or a do what you want. I said to her simply that she was doing it for all the wrong reason's, and then two years later she quit cause she couldn't do the spells.
People need to realize that everything won't work, and you need to learn how to incorporate items, with other items. Not every kit, or spell out, even books are hard core proofs, or facts. Blesses be, guys. I hope this helped.
never fully read one of her books, but any attempt has left a sour taste in my mouth. my boyfriend does own a copy of Solitary Witch he got about 15 years ago which neither one of us has managed to get through. simply written, but i've noticed she walks a fine line between doe eyes tree hugger and angry vengeful Christian hater. [two stereotypes about the Wiccan community i hate] take this quote from one of her books:
"Burning Times: You will hear this often. It is in reference to a historical time from about 1000 CE through the 17th century when it is said that over nine million people were tortured and burned by church and public officials on the assumption that they were the Christian version of Witches Historians indicated that the majority of people tortured and murdered were women and children."
i don't know where she got 9 million, its an eye catching number, but the reality was more 100,000 not even a quarter of a million. shock value i suppose.
regarding the kit, i looked at the book i have and she explains when writing she had teens and young adults in mind, and she kept on writing because she didn't want the kids interested in witchcraft to not have a guide. yet she also promote the effectiveness of the kit in her introduction.
i've seen Silver Ravenwolf be pleasant and friendly one minute, talking about how Wiccans love, respect, and care for everyone, then the next second she's pointing out how 'other religions' believe you should grovel to your God, or to 'turn the other cheek' then go around killing witches. from what i've seen she doesn't say 'Christian' but its pretty obvious not to mention hypocritical.so, the kit is just a cash grab for her, see the The Emperors New Clothes for further information.
Thank you everyone. This is a rather old post, heh. But thank you for your responses. Even on tumblr there's many people calling Silver out and I've heard she can be pretty racist. I've not seen that yet but I know not to take everything she says too seriously.