Synopses & Reviews
IntroductionMoontalkYou think you know her. You have seen her all your life. You have vivid memories of her. She was always there witnessing your life. She was there at your birth, later she was there at your first kiss, and she was there again when your heart was first broken. Who is she really? Who is the Moon to us?She is the shining one, the magical one, she who shines on all equally.She is lovely Diana, the opener of the womb; Selene, Egg Mother; Astarte of the womb; Mother Moon; Star of the Sea; Notre Dame, our mother. She is Hecate, Queen of the Witches; Artemis; Amazon; Callisto; Muse; Yemaya; White Shell Woman. These are but a few names of our beloved Queen of the Night, our Moon.The Moon was the first clock, calculating her waxing and waning was the original way of reckoning time. She is periodicity, the symbol of change that is constant, the light of the nighttime, birthgiver even before there was birth, dark and light mother. Yet as we regard her white, familiar face, some part of her always remains mysterious. The Moon invented mystery.Astrologists attribute to her the power of conception, the nine-month-long gestation and birthing, nurturance, home loving, romance, security, sensitivity, creativity, and the constant creation of the flow of feelings.What, pray tell, is not connected to the Moon, that almighty force with the gentle manifestations? What laboratory walls can keep her in or out? Who can study our Grandmother? Who can measure her, she who was the first measurement, never quite fitting? Who can study her effect on humans when everyone who tries to study her is already under her influence? She is the lover and faithful spouse of the Earth, never leaving her,always encircling her like in a courtship eternal. She is creator in cooperation with Terra of organic life on Earth. She is the Other, from Earth we gaze up at her in admiration, and yet she is also our mirror. It was only when we took pictures of our Mother Earth from the distant surface of Grandmother Moon that we gained our first visual knowledge of how precious and finite and fragile we -- the Earth -- really are.Who can beseech the Moon so that she will divulge her secrets? How did she choose us to shine upon? Why does she love us so, and why does she bother to give us life and light? And how, at the same time, can she look so cold and immaculate? One night when I prayed to her in a women's circle (she was in Aquarius), I challenged her again, calling out to her face, "Reveal yourself to us!" She just started singing in her old-fashioned way, like a bald-headed, kind-faced woman.The blood of the ancients
Flows in our veins,
And the forms change,
But the circle of life remains.
(traditional Wiccan chant)Grandmother Moon sings songs that I know, and she sometimes sings songs I never heard of and she teaches them to me. I was surprised that she was singing that night and I taunted her."What do you mean singing songs to me and being so alive, floating up there in the clouds?"I am not finished yet.""Finished with what?""With setting things right," came the whispered answer."Thank you for not being finished yet. Thank you for still caring."I lit more candles to her, because it's the custom. I remembered my seventy-year-old friend Jennifer at the swimming pool, who is afraid to look at the Moon through the tree branches because she thinks it's bad luck."Do you mind if welook at you through the branches?" I asked the Moon."Look at me through your soul," she whispered."What about when someone looks at you over her left shoulder? Do you mind that?""No. Look at me any way you can. Look at me with your eyes closed.See me with your womb."That's moontalk. I feel moonish when I am out with the Full Moon at Tiburon on the water. She is reflected on the surface of the Bay, as she rises from the East Bay hills over San Francisco. So beautiful."What is the most important thing we should learn from you?" I asked again."To flow. Don't be afraid to let go. Don't be afraid to come, back. Don't be afraid to become full. Don't be afraid."The women were all talking to her now. One woman set her flickering white candle within the spread of her prayer shawl, shielding it from the wind and whispered to the Moonmother."You are the most powerful force in my life. Please help me with my health so that I can regain my balance."Now another woman stood up and prayed to her."My son, dearest Goddess, let me keep my son. I want to guide him through his life, I want to keep custody of him. Please help me in court."Yet another stood up with her lit candle."I praise you and thank you for granting my wish from the last Full Moon."All of us look like women from ancient times as we pray to the Moon, windblown, crowned with seasonal evergreens. And we are doing it every month. She lives in our bodies and now in the rhythm of our lives. We need her, we need to come outdoors to this magical balmy place on the water and worship. We don't care if it's considered silly. Some of our husbands and boyfriends get jealous. What are we doing together -- all women without men -- in the middle of thenight?The men just have to get over it.What we know is that it helps us to pray to the Moon. She is alive and visible, she is a mandala for our innermost selves, she is our benefactress, she is our relative, she is Grandmother Moon. We pray with confidence and satisfaction.
Inviting us to "look" at the moon as the old ally she is," renowned feminist witch Zsuzsanna Budapest shows how to tap into the moon's power for peace, health, and energy. With delightful wit and wisdom, she shares practical and entertaining lunar lore, from ancient moon-based rituals to lunar cycle diet tips. Budapest reveals how, by acting in harmony with the moon, women can balance everything from their mood and weight to fertility. Here is a spirited illumination of the natural cycles that influence our lives.
This spirited guide to "the grandmother of time" includes lunar lore, aspects of the goddess related to the moon, and diet and behaviour suggestions correlated with the moon's cycles. This book introduces the moon as an influence on both evolution and on individual sex lives. The author offers practical advice on how to make it through the moon's phases: waxing, waning and retrograde. The book is organized by the 13 lunations, exploring the moods, goddesses, rituals, and legends that are associated with each cycle.
Includes bibliographical references (p. 277-280) and index.
About the Author
I was born in Budapest on January 30, 1940, on a terrible north-wind-whipped morning. My mother, Masika, then only twenty-five years old, had great trouble delivering me, so I was born by cesarean section. Mother was a famous sculptor who also happened to be a psychic, medium, and palm reader. She came from a long line of witches in the herbalist tradition. Her sister continued the line, becoming a pharmacist.
The Hungarian revolution in 1956 changed my life. I escaped to the West and went to school in Innsbruck and Vienna, and later at the University of Chicago, studying languages. I married and had two sons.
I studied with Second City, then with Viola Spolin, the mother of improvisation, and later at American Academy of Dramatic Art in New York.
In 1970 I discovered the Women's Liberation Movement, which led to another huge change in my life: I became a conscious woman. Feminism gave me so much. I decided to contribute seriously by connecting witchcraft with feminism, thereby sparking the women's spirituality movement. I wrote the first feminist witchcraft book, The Feminist Book of Lights and Shadows, which later became The Holy Book of Women's Mysteries; I followed this with two other books, Grandmother of Time and Grandmother Moon.
When I am not working on a new book I like to work with women at weekend workshops, retreats, and witch camps, where we practice the remembered arts of witchcraft in safe circles of women. We use tools of dance and chanting, candles, and incense to lift our spirits. We take part in guided meditations and pay visits to our ancestors and the Wild Woman. We practice using aromas and Bach remedies for inner balance.