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Magic and Ecology: Environmental Magic and Geomacy

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This panel explores “landscape magic” and how human interaction with place affects thoughts, emotions and actions.

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5 March 2021: Podcast I Josephine McCarthy & Alexander Cummins

12 March 2021: Live Q&A I Josephine McCarthy & Alexander Cummins (chaired by Simone Kotva)

Plants, animals and organic material have always played a hugely important role in magic. “Geomancy” is an ancient technique of divination used by consulting the earth (geos). This panel explores “landscape magic” and how human interaction with place affects thoughts, emotions and actions. How are these practices employed today and what can be learned from historical examples? Alexander Cummins and Josephine McCarthy are writers and practitioners with several decades of experience exploring the intersection of magical practice with ecology.

Speaker Biographies

Alexander Cummins

Alexander Cummins is an historian, poet, and consultant whose practice centres around religion, philosophy, medicine and magic. He is the author of The Starry Rubric: Seventeenth-century English Astrology and Magic (2012), which explores the history of magical approaches to the emotions: from mapping personality with astrology, to managing emotionality with herbs and amulets, to the manipulations of aphrodisiacs, the evil eye, and the conjuration of spirits. He also has a special interest in geomancy and the history and practice of seeking conversation with non-human spirit-entities through the aid of interpreting the non-human environment. Cummins writes for both academic and esoteric publishers and facilitates a range of workshops and lectures series: http://www.alexandercummins.com.

Josephine McCarthy

Josephine McCarthy is an esoteric practitioner, teacher and author of 26 books on the theory and practice of western magic, and four fiction works on similar themes. Her work has particular emphasis on the magician’s relationship with the land and environment, and the magical analysis of New Kingdom Egyptian Funerary texts in exploration of the living use of such texts, with the concept of the deities as forces of nature. She is also the author of Quareia – an extensive in-depth open source training course in the theory, practice and history of western magic that moves magical practice into deeper cooperative relationships with nature: https://www.quareia.com/. Josephine also blogs at: https://josephinemccarthy.com.

Chair: Simone Kotva is post-doctoral research fellow in the Faculty of Theology, University of Oslo, where she works on the “Ambivalences of Nordic Nature: Gift, Guilt, Grace” project.

Image: © Charlotte Rodgers

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