How I Heal


You asked what forms of healing people do and included things that might not be considered healing in the usual sense. Well, one of my special interests is Pagans in Recovery. This is a group of Pagans who are in 12-step recovery programs - Alcoholics Anonymous and other self-help groups that are based on A.A. such as Gamblers Anonymous, Al-Anon, Narcotics Anonymous, Overeater's Anonymous, Adult Children of Alcoholics, Emotions Anonymous etc. etc. etc. If you can think of an obstacle in your life or somebody else's, chances are that someone somewhere has started a 12-step program to deal with it.

The problem is that many Pagans, Feminist Priestesses, Shamans, Druids, and any other type of Magickal folk you can think of, often don't feel comfortable in AA and these related groups. WHY? The meetings CLOSE with the Lord's prayer or the "our father" and have many Christian overtones taken from the general culture, although they are technically supposed to be non-sectarian in their spiritual approach. Many Pagans in these groups find that they have trouble applying the steps of recovery in the context of what they believe to find recovery for their specific problems. This is particularly difficult in cases of Alcoholism and Drug addiction - and these problems DO exist to a great degree in the Pagan/Magickal communities - in which A.A. and Narcotics Anonymous are often the most successful treatment approaches available to the average person and that feeling excluded from them can mean death, insanity or jail to the person who does not find the help they need.

While living in New England I wrote a series of articles on how to apply the steps of recovery in a Pagan/Magickal context in HARVEST - a popular newsletter for the Craft in that region, that is now becoming nationwide. The last of these was printed in Yule of 1989, just before I left to move here. At the same time I discovered PAGANS IN RECOVERY had been formed on a national basis in Ohio and had a list of a large number of people, as well as nationwide contacts for networking. (Pagans in Recovery is published for $8.00 a year - address Pagans in Recovery Newsletter c/o Bekki 6500 S.R. 356 , New Marshfield OHIO 45766)

An interesting note is that we both started doing this work separately and originally I also had a network called PANTHEISTS IN RECOVERY. Neither of us had known of the others existence at the time of starting the work and taking these names. Pantheists in Recovery has since merged with the national network, as I saw no need to duplicate their excellent efforts. Another interesting note is that, in my case, doing this was inspired by J.A.C.S. - an organization for Jewish Alcoholics, Chemically dependent people and their Significant others. It had been founded for the same purpose by some Jewish folks in A.A. in New York City and has now spread across the country, to Canada, and to Israel with several thousand names on their mailing lists. These people also felt the need for support to integrate their recovery program with their religion because they were non-Christians.

A very special part of this extended "healing" work for me is that I have the support of my partner Koren, the sysop of PAN, who is my partner both in the Craft and in our lives together. Although he is not himself in any of these recovery programs, he has been very helpful and supportive of my work in reaching out to other Pagans who are also in these groups.

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Last modified: August 19 2018 14:43:42