Frances Billinghurst’s Encountering the Dark Goddess: A Journey into the Shadow Realms jumped out at me from the list of titles available for review – probably because I didn’t know a great deal about this concept of the Divine Feminine in any depth before reading it.
I was quickly drawn in by Billinghurst’s writing style and I found the layout of the book conducive to the journey that I felt that I was being taken on as a reader. The book is split into three distinct parts: the first section being an introduction to the Dark Goddess and her connection with the descent into the Underworld, the second a spotlight on thirteen aspects of the Dark Goddess and the third a more practically-focused guide to working with her. For example, there are instructions on how to make a shadow mask, a binding spell and incense recipes.
One of the things I particularly liked about this book was the way in which the author shares and weaves her own experiences and encounters throughout, because it somehow made the concepts and practices she writes about more readily accessible and relatable. I often found myself pausing to re-read nuggets of her eloquent wisdom and enjoyed how the writing really made me reflect upon certain experiences I’ve had in my own life.
In terms of the main part of the book, Part II, each of the thirteen aspects of the Dark Goddess that the author chooses to focus on is set out with information about her and followed by sections on working with each one: an invocation; associated correspondences; an exercise to embrace her and a meditation. It is all clear and easy to follow without being overwhelming and there are plenty of references to other works that the author has drawn upon and one can utilise for the purposes of further study.
Book Details: Frances Billinghurst. Encountering the Dark Goddess. Moon Books (26 March 2021). ISBN 978-1789045994.
Review Details: Encountering the Dark Goddess was reviewed by Em Mulholland, sub-editor of Indie Shaman magazine and this review was published in Issue 51.
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