Monday, October 14, 2013

‘The Book of the Holy Strega’ (book review): Part II

'The Book of the Holy Strega' (Raven Grimassi; 2012)

[original version published in 1981]

'The Book of the Holy Strega' was another book that I read earlier this year, and which does tie heavily into the subjects covered here. Although, the specific Streghe tradition has not been covered a lot here. This book was based on the concepts from a book entitled 'Aradia, or the Gospel of the Witches' (Charles Leland; 1899). Charles Leland was an American, and he was greatly aided in his research by a Strega named Maddalena Taluti from Emilia.

Grimassi covers many different subjects, and chronicles the history of Streghe traditions, folklore, legends, and misconceptions... throughout the Italian peninsula, and Greece. Also, he covers his own family Streghe tradition. Largely, the book is about the legend of Aradia. Grimassi puts many formerly confused happenings and ideas into a simpler easy-to-understand order. He also brilliantly puts words to Aradia's story without overdoing it. I strongly believe that he was the one to logically take on this task.

Maddalena Taluti

I recall a quote that I had read somewhere, that Leland was amazed that Italians didn't collectively embrace this tradition, which he was fascinated with. Also, Maddalena Taluti was an amazing source. She did much traveling and was very active in Stregheria. For as much as I can perceive, she sort've reminded me of Guido von List as a source of occult knowledge. A real chip off the old block... historically-speaking.

I would recommend this book for anyone interested in either Stregheria, the ancient culture of the moon goddess, the triple goddess, or the Dianic tradition... which originates back to a time very long ago, when it was all one-culture. This also could be used as a great book of highlighted quotes and teachings by Aradia, which can be read aloud. Stregheria is sometimes referred to as "Aradianism."

When reading the Aradia story, which largely took place around Lake Nemi, I found my mind wandering to my youth. Summers spent around Clear Lake in northern California. Those hot days, dry grassy hills, dotted with oak trees; and of course, the lake. As I imagined Aradia, tall and beautiful in a white gown, she and her followers appeared in my mind like that of biblical figures or other figures of historical legend... even though the teachings are very different.


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