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Discover the best and worst of Wiccan rituals

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By Kelly LeVan

The recent Yule ritual held at the Unitarian Church in Los Alamos is one example of “wonderful,” said Azrael K, co-author with Amber K of “Ritual Craft: Creating Rites for Transformation and Celebration” (Llewellyn Publications, 2006).“There was a lot of participation,” she said in an interview Wednesday. “It was a very evocative experience.”In their book, Azrael and Amber describe types of Wiccan rituals, as well as symbols,language, Samhain ideas, timing, environment and clarifying personal purpose.They also detail the best and worst rituals they have attended, and will share a few of these stories at the next presentation of the Authors Speak Series, set for 7 p.m. Thursday in the upstairs rotunda at Mesa Public Library.Amber is the author of several books including “True Magick,” “Covencraft” and other books on the Craft and magick. She also serves as the executive director of Ardantane, Pagan learning center situated on 25 acres in the Jemez Mountains, and serves on its faculty.Azrael met Amber in the early 1990s. Azrael had only recently discovered Wicca, thanks to an article on the faith and practice of Wicca in the Los Alamos Monitor, advancing a course called Wicca 101.“I grew up more traditionally,” she said. “But the beliefs didn’t fit with what I believed personally. I read the full-page article in the Monitor and thougtht, Wow, that’s what I believe ee Many people I know joined because of that article.”Azrael had held many jobs, including police officer, racecar driver, stockbroker and architectural designer. She has a doctoral degree in law. Soon after she met Amber, she added “writer” to her credentials. They are currently working on their fourth book together.Collaborating has been “a lot of fun,” she said.Azrael said that with their previous volumes, “Candlemas: Feast of Flames” and “Heart of Tarot: An Intuitive Approach,” she primarily edited, while Amber wrote the first drafts. With “Ritual Craft,” the two took turns writing chapters, then reading and editing each other’s work.Amber and Azrael have been members of the Ladywood Tradition of Wicca for many years, maintaining many ties to Wiccans practicing in Azrael’s hometown of Los Alamos.The Authors Speak series is funded by the Friends of Mesa Public Library and run with the help of volunteers and library staff. For more information, please call 662-8240 or visit the Los Alamos County website, www.losalamosnm.us then go to Mesa Public Library’s “events and exhibits” section.