Any author who puts WTF? in the title gets my attention. I like people who have enough confidence in themselves and their knowledge to allow for a bit of humor in their work. And A’Miketh’s humor comes out, right from his introduction. “[The answer] felt right. So I ran with it. While running . . . I tripped.” And dropped the book he was carrying. And bumped his knees. And his head.

And somewhere along the line, while rubbing his aching head and bruised knees, A’Miketh manages to present a pretty well-considered discourse on incorporating magic into every day. His stated goal is to help the reader learn to act, rather than react. This is done, in large part, by becoming more conscious and cognizant of our perceptions, and of how our Will manifests.

How A’Miketh asks us to alter our thinking is where the real fun begins. He deftly interweaves serious discussions of reality and our perceptions with first-hand accounts from his own experiences, and a healthy dose of humor for seasoning. Chapter 4, discussing why spells sometimes fail, is titled “Ruh-Roh, Raggy.” (Don’t get it? Say it out loud. Again, a la Scooby Doo. NOW you get it!) He also provides a few exercises to help the reader explore the concepts he presents.

What is so refreshing about such a humorous approach is how it addresses things that we shouldn’t take for granted. The Phoenix Box Ritual, for example, is an exercise that, if done as he recommends, will take several days to complete. He also provides a short version, which consists of literally beating yourself over the head with the Phoenix Box until you “get it.” There are no shortcuts. Getting a chuckle out of the reminder is a lot more fun than getting a lecture, whether you need the reminder or not.

This is not a “101” book, however. It is intended for intermediate practitioners, so you need to be willing to bring your own sensibilities and intentions to the exercises he outlines. Nor is this presented as an arbitrary, stream-of-consciousness sort of work. “I have 20+ years of experience, I am the grand high poo-bah, so believe what I say.” Yes, A’Miketh does have over 20 years experience. He is also a tutor for OBOD, grounds his suggestions in solid research (magical and non-magical), and supplies a good bibliography for his references. He is also clear in differentiating his exploration and adaptation of concepts in his research from the concepts themselves.

In his foreword, Taylor Ellwood says, “[W]hat this book will really do is show you how not to take yourself or your magical practice so seriously that you forget the importance of keeping an open mind and being willing to learn.” That sums it up nicely. Whether or not you choose to really work through any of his suggestions and exercises, this book will encourage you to consciously open yourself to a broader perception of your world. And you may even find yourself reading bits of it aloud to share in a bit of chuckling.

~review by KatSai
Author: Collen A’Miketh
Megalithica Books, 2009
pp. 131, $19.99
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