Thursday, July 28, 2016

Margot Adler

I'm not sure when I became aware that the journalist Margot Adler (1946 - 2014) I heard on NPR was the Wiccan Priestess Margot Adler that had helped me along my path to Wicca many years ago. It was probably after listening to one of her annual, often tongue-in-cheek, Halloween stories I looked forward to hearing every year.

I never met Adler, but had read her book Drawing Down the Moon: Witches, Druids, Goddess-Worshippers, and Other Pagans in America Today just after college and her unbiased, straightforward, well-researched look at Neo-Paganism in the United States showed me that Wicca wasn't some cult-like group of weirdos and in fact could be a very grounding and wholistic way to look look at life and the world. Many have credited Drawing Down the Moon for bringing paganism into the modern-light.

Adler died on July 28, 2014 from cancer and I wanted to take a moment to remember her today. Adler gave paganism in all it's forms some credibility. It's fitting too that I recognize Aldler today because this is Shivers of Delight's second birthday.  I don't think this blog would exist without Adler's impact on making paganism more acceptable to the general public. There wouldn't be nearly as much to discuss.

One of the last things that Adler wrote is a book called Vampires Are Us: Understanding Our Love Affair with the Immortal Dark Side. It is on my reading list for this year. Adler said about the book that while her husband was dying she felt herself drawn to books about vampires. She read every one she could find because it helped her deal with issues of mortality. The first part of her book talks about our attraction to the vampire story and the remaining part is a review/description of all the different vampires stories she read. This sounds like a good reference book to have around.

If you haven't read anything by Adler, I encourage you to do it now. Also take a look at the announcement of Adler's death by NPR and her New York Times Obituary.  Little known fact about Adler- she landed the first interview in the U.S. with J. K. Rowling. (You can read a transcript of the interview from 1998 here)
Margot Adler (1946 - 2014)

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