Phyllis Curott

Pioneering spiritual teacher, Wiccan High Priestess and activist attorney, Phyllis Curott is also the bestselling author of The Love Spell (Gotham Books 2005), Book of Shadows and WitchCrafting. She has been honored by Jane Magazine as one of The Ten Gutsiest Women of the Year, and New York Magazine has called her one of the city's most intellectually cutting edge speakers. A member of the esteemed Assembly of World Religious Leaders, an interfaith and First Amendment activist and member of the Lady Liberty League, Phyllis Curott is an outspoken advocate for Wiccan/Pagan religious freedom in the media and the courts. She has successfully won the right of Wiccan clergy to perform legally binding marriages and rituals in public parks and has consulted on many religious liberties cases. Curott is founder of the Temple of Ara, one of the oldest Wiccan congregations in America, a shamanic tradition dedicated to the experience and ethics of immanent divinities.

The Growing Dangers of American Theocracy and Its Impact on Contemporary Paganism, Wicca and Our First Amendment Freedoms

This talk explores the emerging threat posed by religious fundamentalism, and what you can do as an individual, and we can do as a community, to defeat that menace. Since the 2003 elections, the agenda of the Christian Right has come aggressively into the forefront of American politics and its impact is already affecting the lives of millions. We'll examine who the players are, what they believe - including the specific dangers of Dominion Theology and the Rapture --what their religious and political goals are, the political alliances they've forged, and its impact on our right to practice our spirituality in freedom and peace. We'll also look at the role of the media, interfaith and other alliances, and the strategies used by the Christian Right to seize control of our political system and examine how those techniques can be re-appropriated by our community in its new role in the politics of America. You can't afford to miss this discussion. It's time to get organized.

The Ultimate Love Spell: Love, Longing, and the Path to Divinity

Love, Longing, and the Path to Divinity Everyone knows that when you fall in love, the world is filled with magic. And who hasn't tried to use magic to manifest love? But magic isn't mechanical and the results of love spells can be dangerously unexpected - especially when using sex magic. Drawing on my new book, The Love Spell, this talk confronts the sleeping dragons aroused by longing and disentombs the unrealized treasures of the hieros gamos, the Sacred Marriage or Great Rite. We'll explore desire and daemons, polarity and eroticism, orgasms and altered states, and modern relationships as the new Mystery Schools. And, in keeping with my tradition of challenging dogma, I'm going to eviscerate the tired, uninspired notion that "the energy we work with when making magic is neutral," and propose an erotic alternative.

If time permits, this talk will integrate magical practices to heal old wounds, clear away obstacles, open our hearts and empower ourselves to find our souls, and our soul mates, and to revitalize the relationships we're already blessed with. And we'll lay the groundwork for the ultimate love spell, embodying the erotic dance of the Divine Feminine and Masculine as the highest love, and greatest magic, manifest on earth.

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