Origins of Modern Witchcraft: The Evolution of a World Religion
In The Origins of Modern Witchcraft author Ann Moura, a practicing Witch and historian, makes a sweeping tour of more than 5,000 years of religious and cultural history. She studies the evolution of concepts such as original sin, and the Tree of Life, the relationship between cermonial magick and Wicca, and much more. This is an evocative account of Wicca through the ages, the evolutionary story of an ancient religion, and an uncensored account of Wiccan history.
Poorly researched, illogical "theorizing"
By Barbara A. Fisher - December 31, 2001
This is one of the most poorly researched books on the subject of the origins of modern Witchcraft I have ever read in my entire twenty plus years as a practicing Witch. Moura calls her ideas a "theory," however, I would consider them to be at best, a weak hypothesis. A theory must be supported at least in part by factual evidence. Facts are not broadly evident in this work.For example, this author's explanation as to why the Holocaust occurred fly in the face of all of the reputable Holocaust research I have ever read that was written by actual historians. She explains that Hitler had to terminate the mentally ill, the Gypsies, the Slavs and the homosexuals because they were a threat to his establishment of a new Arayan Pagan society. The explanations that actual historians give for these killings generally has to do with Hitler's ideas of racial purity, and a society where all members exhibit qualities which are uniformly of service to the Reich. Gypsies and Slavs... read more
A "Feel Good" Book Perhaps ... but NOT Good History!
By "gwydionoak" - March 8, 2001
A lot of Pagans have, it would seem, a desperate, deep-down need to "legitimize" their religion, especially in the face of frequent attacks by fundamentalist Christians. Ann Moura has delivered a book that meets that need. What Pagan, after all, would not feel good to learn that we are not only "the Old Religion," but in fact THE Old Religion...and everyone knows "older is better", right? She claims that "European Witchcraft hearkens back to the worship familiar to the people of the Indus some 30,000 years ago...(I guess that puts "modern" upstarts like Jesus, Buddha,Laotze etc. who have only been around a few thousand years firmly in their place!). What is touted to be an "uncensored history of Paganism," however, is anything but history. It is a fascinating exercise in "wishcraft" and a fun read, but definately not to be taken seriously.Origins of Modern Witchcraft is basically a reworking of and a considerable... read more
Well-intentioned but confusing and ahistorical
By happydogpotatohead "happydogpotatohead" - April 12, 2001
I hoped for a good exposition on the history of Paganism and Witchcraft. Instead, I got a book that was very typical of what Llewellyn is releasing these days. Ms. Moura's idyllic view of the Indus Valley civilizations is not accurate, and does not agree with the archaeological evidence. It isn't possible, from the archaeological evidence, to determine exactly who or what the Mohenjo-Daro civilization worshipped or believed, nor is it possible to say how they lived. In fact, one structure that Ms. Moura identifies as a "temple" is believed by a great many archaeologists to be a public bath. This kind of pick-choose-&-fabricate interpretation of archaeology is the kind of stuff that frankly makes Wiccans and Pagans a laughingstock among serious researchers. Ms. Moura's interpretations of archaeological evidence get more convoluted and peculiar from that point, and evolve outward into pure fantasy by the middle of the book. Other reviewers have pointed out the... read more
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