TWH – Michael Smith, acting director of the New Alexandrian Library, became spellbound as he was packing up books and materials recently donated by the Theosophical Society of Washington, D.C., including four decades of bound volumes of Theosophist magazines dating to 1901. One of Smith’s husbands, Jim Dickinson, became perturbed. “When we were boxing up the Theosophical Society library, my husband Jim yelled at me – a lot,” Smith said, chuckling at the memory. “He kept saying, ‘Put the book in the box so we can move it.’ It was such an incredible collection of all sorts of esoteric topics that I had never seen before.”
Thanks to two Pagan-centric institutions — the New Alexandrian Library, located near Georgetown, Del., and the Adocentyn Research Library, a similar enterprise located in San Francisco’s East Bay — Pagans and the general public alike now have access to thousands of Pagan, metaphysical, and esoteric books and periodicals, including rare and out-of-print works. Both libraries continue to accept donations of Pagan and Pagan-related books.
HUNT VALLEY, MARYLAND –When at any single Pagan conference with a robust lineup of workshops, panels, and rituals, a participant might find it difficult to choose what to attend and what to pass on. When two conferences join forces, those decisions become, at very least, four times as difficult to make. Such was the experience for 3-400 people who attended the combined Sacred Space and Between the Worlds conference in Maryland this past weekend. These two events became one this year through a combination of cooperation and astrology. Sacred Space is an annual conference which is held around this time.
Building a Pagan temple or employing full time clergy may be easier, and more difficult, than people think. It appears that if you have a core group of three to five devoted people willing to dedicate at least ten years of their life and to make monthly donations, your dreams of Pagan infrastructure can come true. In this two part series, The Wild Hunt will look at several successful projects in order to see what they have in common. And, we’ll also look at a failed Pagan community center to see what went wrong. Today, in part one, we’ll focus on the larger projects, such as a temple and an archival library.
The New Alexandrian Library, a research and reference facility focused on magic and the occult, is another step closer to opening its doors. In early December, the library received its certificate of occupancy and is now ready to move its collection of rare papers, artifacts, and artwork onsite. The library is located near Georgetown, Delaware and is named after the Great Library of Alexandria famed throughout the ancient world as a seat of knowledge and a gathering place for intellectuals. The New Alexandrian Library (NAL) hopes to follow in those footsteps. It’s taken the Assembly of the Sacred Wheel, the group spearheading the creation of the library, 14 years to raise the funds and build the first building in the library complex.
[Pagan Community Notes is a series focused on news originating from within the Pagan community. Reinforcing the idea that what happens to and within our organizations, groups, and events is news, and news-worthy. Our hope is that more individuals, especially those working within Pagan organizations, get into the habit of sharing their news with the world. So let’s get started!]
On Dec. 4, Crystal Blanton, Wild Hunt columnist, Priestess, writer, and long-time activist, issued a challenge to the collective Pagan communities, saying “This is an opportunity to stand up and support the people of color within the Pagan community, and society, by saying…