Author; Shani Oates
“The ‘Work’ is saturated with true magick; it is profound, practical and progressive. It is also gnostic and promethean. That is to say, it teaches the individual to hone their faculties of memory and of mindfulness – that is of foresight and hindsight, to know when to pit wit and will against fate, and when not to; how to divine the signs and omens to understand the ways of the gods and how to speak to the dead, so that we can be advised by our ancestors. These tools are not Witchcraft, but they do manufacture a shared process, whereby wisdom guides experience, and through carnate and discarnate guides, we are encouraged to learn how to ‘overcome fate;’ we see the web of Wyrd for what it is and the means to become part of it. In this way, we also join the Shadow Company, to guide and accompany the next generation of pilgrims to our Hearth.” ~Shani Oates
Traditional Craft thrives as an underground stream. Its rejection of dogma generates a mystical path of hermitage and evolution. Its source honours the ‘pagan’ spirit, presenting to every seeker a devotional path that is the magic of the soul. It speaks of spiritual alchemy, masterfully borne in the crafting of matter.
Crafting the Arte of Tradition explores that which was based in the medieval guilds – the rural traditions claimed by craft heritage. However, the way in which those ‘guild’ secrets were disclosed called for certain initiatory rites of passage that stemmed from a shared hereditary root – one based in culture, which developed tangible craft traditions pertinent to each.
Later, when those guilds disintegrated, the rule simply reverted to kin and was preserved within those same hereditary guild families, (now engaged in finding apprentices for slightly different training). Apprenticeships required sponsorship, and only a family member could undertake that role. Toad men, Horsemen, Cunning Folk et al are described within Crafting the Arte of Tradition – not as an intellectual study, but as a lived tradition!