I have just finished reading The Way of Magic. I read it twice, once quickly, once to actually absorb what Gordon Strong had written. The book is presented as broad chapters divided into specific sections, which makes it very easy to use for reference purposes. Mr Strong’s delight in language is evident throughout the book. He writes with clarity and with no presupposition of prior knowledge by his reader. However, he manages also to put enough genuine experience into the book to set the more knowledgeable student thinking. That he writes from his own personal experience and passion is evident, especially so in his allusions to Great Isis.
As he points out in his Foreword, no single volume can hope to cover the breadth of magical thought. However, Strong successfully manages to cover the broad outlines of the major systems in use in the Mysteries today, giving sound information, challenging the reader and pointing the way for further study. It is not a glossary of current magical thought, but a very useful guide, particularly, I feel, for a new student starting out on their chosen Path.
With over thirty years working within the Western Mystery Tradition myself, I was pleasantly surprised by the new perspectives offered and reminded that sometimes we need to step outside of our well established comfort zones in order to get a clearer view. Moving through the Tarot and Qabalistic thought, from the Arthurian myths to Egypt and ritual the book offers a fresh, clear glimpse into the Mysteries as they are currently practiced.
I was particularly struck by the ethical aspects of the book, and wholeheartedly agree with Gordon Strong on his take on what a student must ask of him or herself.
The cover art of Matt Baldwin-Ives adds a finishing touch and reflects an abiding theme of the book… that Magic is as natural as breathing and as much a part of our everyday lives.
S.C.Vincent is a Yorkshire born artist, writer and poet, who has studied within the Western Mystery Tradition for over 35 years. She has written and taught meditation and visualisation courses and is currently working on the designs for a new Tarot as well as several other books. Her book with Dr G Michael Vasey, The Mystical Hexagram, will be released in autumn 2012.
Gordon Strong’s The Way of Magic is available from Amazon, Amazon UK, Barnes & Noble online, and theSkylight Press website.