Part of the development of a student of the Sacred Mysteries is the writing of a diary, which records their daily observations and experiences. This enables the student to tune herself to the cycle of the seasons and the manifestation of the God and Goddess in her life. Maxine has kept such a diary throughout her training. These days, her diaries are an observation of the richness and harshness of living in one of the most idyllic places on earth. The magic comes naturally in such places! Extracts of Maxine’s diaries will be updated monthly.
1st May 2017
49 years ago today, Alex and I were married.
It is remarkable how the Craft has evolved and not always in a priestly way, however, the majority of Alexandrian groups continue the work of the priesthood ever aspiring in their understanding of the ways of magic and spirit. There are some who have responded to the public need to take part in honouring the Gods of old, their work is admirable; others practice enactments in the form of mystery plays and others who specialise in giving talks either on the Craft or its modern history. The diversity is supplying a genuine need that has come into being, not only in the public arena but in the circles of the Craft.
Alex and I were rebels who were vilified by the Gardnerian Tradition of Witchcraft; we dared to break their rules by initiating homosexual men and women. In fact, we broke and changed several rules that were proven to be controlling in less than spiritual ways; this set us apart from Gardnerian Craft and other traditions of the time. Eventually, we became known as ‘Alexandrian’ not least because we developed the Craft along the lines of Freedom, Consciousness, Worship, and Magic, much to the despair of other traditions. We believed that all are entitled to seek Initiation. This did not mean all were accepted, irrespective of whether they were gay, disabled, whole-bodied, able-bodied, or just different. Much to the annoyance of the Gardnerians, many more were accepted than rejected.
In the Sixties, requests from the disabled were scarce, it was therefore not something we had to consider; it was simply how things were at the time. No doubt, had more come forward, they would have been accepted if they had the right attitude to work in our circle; we were rebels who believed in the beauty of the Individual and the magic of Witchcraft.
Alexandrian Craft is for those who have a vocation, aptitude, and aspiration to practice the Art of Witchcraft; not all people have the right attitude to work in an Alexandrian Circle.
If a person requests Initiation into non-diluted Alexandrian Craft and is accepted after the usual period of asking questions; they know what to expect. This begs the question why someone would ask for Initiation into a group if they are not properly prepared to accept the group’s way of working, especially given there are so many traditions nowadays who work differently or in ways that are suitable to all who ask regardless of attitude.
Why would any Initiate or group want to be known as ‘Alexandrian’ and yet yearn to change the refinements that make it Alexandrian?
Perhaps they recognise that Alexandrians are true to the Art Magical; that we refuse to dilute our rituals; we do not seek converts; we stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before; and, we do not perform same-sex Initiation.
The new book is coming on, however, the research is bringing up so much information that has to be put into a comprehensive timeline hence the new website that is nearly ready to go.
It is wonderful to be home in Ffestiniog, Snowdonia North Wales working the rituals in my stone circle, the river Teigl roars past us as we invoke the Watchtowers and work the magic; raising power is almost unnecessary as the elements are so vital especially at this time of year.
2017 is going to be an exciting year, I have been invited to New Orleans to speak at HexFest; last year I was speaking at the Goddess Conference in San Paulo Brazil, and teaching in Rio, it was good. The people have a natural flow about them, their curiosity suits me as I far prefer to answer the questions of the naturally curious and their sincerity is beyond question. The Covens in Brazil are a delight to work with. I have been asked to speak many times and have learnt through experience my forte is answering the questions of the curious rather than boring the audience with stuff they have no interest in.
I spoke at the Millennium centre in Cardiff and at Fairfield halls for the Witchfest conferences. I was then invited to Atlanta to speak at the Gathering of the Tribes and then in Connecticut. My favourite talk was at Conway Hall in London on ‘The Day for Doreen’, it rather made the audience pay attention. I was surprised by the mundane attitude of the many and the viciousness with which the Sanders were vilified, ah well I bless them with love and kind thoughts.
Working Title. Broken Silence
So much has happened since last diarising, some events so sad, some wonderful and some tedious and now so magical it is hard to accept the way it all came about. Well not really, that is the way of magic.
Victor, my son had a catastrophic stroke, which left him severely brain damaged. After much ado, I found an apartment in London’s famous Abbey Road that enabled me to take Victor out of the nursing home and care for him in our new loving magical home. The address sounds quite grand given its closeness to Abbey Road Studios famous for the Beatles recording, and the Zebra crossing, which nowadays attracts tourists flocking to have their photographs taken in the likeness of the famous four causing massive traffic jams. Our home is not grand, it is perfect for us; we give thanks to the Universe every day for the abundance of blessings that fill our lives.
At first, it was all rather scary, pills, nurses, Doctors, physiotherapist’s, and carers, all professional and me overwhelmed by the enormity of Victors’ state of being and the awesome responsibility of nursing a man who loves life. Thank God, for humour and that the mistakes I made did not kill him.
It took about three years to establish a routine that even now can be shattered in a moment with the unpredictability of infection and its devastating painful effects that can literally take months to clear.
It was shocking to learn the witches were once again up to their mischief; actually, it was not shocking at all. Admittedly, they were not to know my personal circumstances and somehow I do not think their knowing would have made any difference. Alex always called the witches a quarrelsome bunch. Of late, I have wanted to call them far worse. Initiate or not, social media seems to strip some people of all the social graces and their supposed spirituality. Just because they are in a closed or so-called secret group, they seem to think their rabble rousing is only for the eyes of the mob. Do I have news for them!
There will always be tittle-tattler’s who take a snapshot of the most interesting posts and send it to who? Well……. recently my inbox is full of vile duplicitous posts, screen shot for my attention.
And now….. I have received and read a copy of the broomstick book. Both the screenshot postings and the broomstick book would have at one time been treated with dignified silence. Alas, historical fact is constantly being falsely portrayed.
I am no stranger to the supposed ‘leading authorities’ recreating events that do not match the truth.
Dignified silence is no longer respected by those who know the facts yet choose to alter them to enhance their own position in history.
If illusion and malignant suggestion are left unchallenged, inherited grudges become a mass of hatred within those who were neither present at the time who after several decades have become the devotees of those who continue to spread malicious untruths. All because of jealousy, lies which when published enough times are perceived as truth and so history is corrupted.
So….. the records have been accessed, legal advice taken, and the book in progress.
Hold on to your brooms this is definitely going to be a somewhat rocky, hilarious, fascinating and clarifying read.
The frosts are amazing and the vast amount of Witch money (gossamer type webs) covering the old bracken suggests lots of inner activity in the fairy realms. Nearly time for dragon hunting, roll on summer!
We were ten for dinner, it was so pleasant to see old friends. Gosh, we were young and now some of us are grandparents! Moira prepared a Thai feast that was both beautiful and delicious. We decided to go camping for May Day, the weather was beautiful during the day and the celebrations were particularly good. Everyone had made such effort with their springtime costumes and the site was perfect. After the champion of the stone throwing competition had chosen the most beautiful of the flowered crowns circling the Maypole and taken his May Queen, they frolicked off into a field. Ten minutes later, the police arrived to say they had received a complaint that a couple were fornicating in a nearby field. They checked that no music was being amplified and when asked about the lovemaking, they laughed and said the complainant must have used binoculars and that it was a perfect day for a romp. As the evening drew in, so did the cold; we were not allowed to light fires so we compromised and lit one in an enormous iron frying pan which made very little difference to our shivering bodies. Bilbo had been playing with the children all day; he had caused some concern when he went missing for a while and a search party was set up. He turned up with some children wondering what all the fuss was about.
By seven o’clock, he was fast asleep and no amount of prodding would wake him, we even had to carry him to the tent where he slept motionless until the next morning. Vincent had been playing too! He was eventually too cold and too merry to endure the frying pan fire and retired to the tent with Bilbo. When I later tried to get into the tent, it was not easy. I spent the night squashed alongside two immoveable life forces. It poured with rain during the night and miserable in the morning. I nearly want to say I am too old for this sort of thing, but not just yet!
Found an absolutely brilliant walk round and through an ancient oak wood, an area called the Suk, which includes a magnificent waterfall, this is now Bilbo and my daily walk which can take up to two hours depending on our chosen route and the weather, of course. It is just at the back of the house and so beautiful. I suspect it is a place where dragons may sleep; there are many massive rocks and boulders that would make brilliant hiding places. We have had dazzling sunshine for about a month, I was beginning to miss the rain, and so was the garden. It is raining now and everything is shimmering and growing furiously. Collecting Pink stones from the riverbed to build an altar to Angel Anael.
Started to clear the end of the garden, this is the no man’s land I intend to plant fruit trees in the winter and make it into an orchard; Mainly Mulberry; it makes the garden feel complete. The cuckoo has started to call and the fishermen are out early morning and late at night waiting for the salmon along with the Heron, Twocan. New Moon, new magics! Yuletide 2002
We had brunch late and Vincent suggested that we take a leisurely walk behind the house. I have been conjuring up courage for months to negotiate the hill/mountain after the bridge! Fully equipped with the right boots, stick etc we set off with joyous heart. The steep path beyond the bridge developed into a rather rocky climb which was quite fun until I realised there was no way I would be able to come down it without serious consequences.
Vincent paled as it dawned on him that I was speaking truth. We knew a walk was possible that would bring us out on the main road by the pub; cheered by this thought we sauntered on. The farmers in this area are not enamoured of the walker, they remove the signs to discourage the like. Eventually, we were in the midst of mountains, clear sky, and the sun that was rapidly going down. The snow beneath our feet was crisp and sharp and no footprints suggested that we were not on a pathway at all. By this time, we were a couple of hours into the adventure. I started to seethe and threatened a tear or two; when asked why, by Vincent, ‘walkers wobble’ were the words that escaped through gritted teeth. My imagination had gone into overdrive, visualising the four bodies to be discovered in the spring! In the distance, we saw an old disused train station, with increased pace we headed for it and followed the track for a while. Using the sun, we eventually found a path that led to the safety of a farmers tractor prints and a gate, which was completely covered by barbed wire. Once again, we were scuppered but the pace was on, with wonderful views, and the knowledge that we were definitely on the decent, we eventually found the road just as the sun was disappearing.
Bilbo was exhausted and was carried the rest of the way home, I was elated and Vincent was grinning with sheepish delight. Next time we will have a map before adventuring into the snowy realms of Snowdonia.
The weather has been bitterly cold and the cars impossible to get into without heavy duty scraping activities preferably with a pick axe! Guests left this morning and I definitely want a ‘thank god they’ve gone party’, which will probably be a drink in the Grapes on Sunday afternoon. Bilbo is still growing which will stop immediately if he continues not to eat; he has got used to turkey and goodies being spread on his ordinary food. He refuses point blank to consider plain old mince, tough!
Lots of visitors for New Year’s Eve; served a magnificent dinner with beef, haggis, and all the trimmings. The burning of the Old Log went well; it was well laden with last year’s ills scored into it with the white handled knives. I can’t start pulling the upstairs wall down yet; the dust will be very bad. However, I will get to terms with the blowtorch and strip the staircase down. The new kitchen is beautiful; old fashioned pine doors and scrub top, which matches the doors and cupboards; the pleasure of the oven is reflected by the glorious food now adorning the table, hot pots etc. Ray has done a wonderful job of cleaning the oven but I seem to have lost pan lids that I suspect have found their way into the bin.
The house is cosy, even with the occasional drought; the log burner and the range downstairs are ablaze most of the time. Bilbo is still working as a bed warmer, which is a bit of a bore; I am working on his transfer to his own bed, this is proving to be difficult. The two rivers that run through the garden are in full flow and the sound lulls even the lightest sleeper into restful dream states.