Someone at the Daily Mail no doubt had a good time writing the headline “The drunken stripper from the Golden Banana, a coven of Salem witches and the ‘groping’ man horrifically impaled when she crashed into a flatbed truck.”
Yes, it is link bait, and I bit. Wouldn’t you?
But it made me think: One of the many untold stories about the beginnings of the Craft in North America (I can’t speak for other places) is the involvement of people who were in or peripheral to the world of sex work.
I have to make some revisions to an article that I wrote for an edited collection on sex and new religious movements. I’m doing Wicca, no surprise there, and am concentrating on sexual metaphor in ritual. I think, however, that the editor wants more on the “sexy witch” archetype.
Certainly a lot could be said about that, but in one article? Likewise, a lot could be said—but has not—about the nexus of sexual experimentation and contemporary Paganism. It’s not just Paganism, of course—alternative sexual relationships and new religious movements have intersected many times. Hence this book. Consider, for instance, the Oneida Community and its doctrine of “complex marriage,” a sort of 19th-century polyamory.
The sexual impulse and the religious-creation impulse are often closely linked, it seems.