Heal - Discover Your Unlimited Potential And Awaken the Healer - A Review

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Today I'm reviewing Heal: Discover Your Unlimited Potential and Awaken The Powerful Healer Within by Kelly Noonan Gores.


Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Heal


Author Links - Link
Amazon Book Link
Amazon Author Link
Good Reads Book Link
Good Reads Author Link
My Good Reads Profile
My Facebook Page


Generally I like to start out with a disclaimer. I am an contemporary witch.  I look for the connection between magic and science without the need to search for a creator. I receive no compensation for these reviews and all my links are standard Amazon links and not affiliate links. I am a practicing photo reader and have spent the last 16 years honing my craft.  I offer personal readings by request and have a strong online history that boasts over 429,000 views.

Starting with the physical book I can say that this is another great one to toss into a bag or purse to read on the go.  It is small but the font was chosen well so that these elder eyes can read them without too much trouble.  The cover is smooth and contains no illustrations.  It does not have an index but does offer a section called "Meet the Experts" where the contributors images and brief bio can be found in its place.  We are also provided a further reading section with three pages of recommended books by those same experts, related to the topic of healing. 

The book is broken down into seven chapters which lead the reader on a journey of discovery. It covers what exactly our health actually is as well has how to work with food, nature and dealing with things such as the subconscious mind and the placebo effect.


Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Heal

The book contains and assortment of quotes from health professionals and those who have overcome adversity to create a place of learning and growth for the reader.  Each chapter has a summary at the end to help the reader understand what they experienced and how to connect with the information on both a physical and spiritual level. Understanding, in chapter one for example, the role that stress plays on the body and how we possess the power to heal ourselves completely, if we simply allow that process to occur.

I enjoyed the section related to understanding that holistic medicine considers a personal mental, emotional and lifestyle factors, not just their physical symptoms. I can say with confidence, after addressing the issues that I had across all facets of my life, I was able to improve not only my physical self, but also my sense of self.  Understanding that the more time I spent focusing on negative self talk and self abuse, the more negative I felt.  Those things all weighed heavily (both figuratively and literally) on my body.  As with the experiences of the journey of those in the book, I found that my ability to awaken my own positive thoughts brought back my bodies own desire to be healthy and to thrive.  I continue that practice today with mindful meditation, exploration of spirituality and healing and the desire to reach a place where I can reflect on the world without anger.  My desire is to feel only compassion instead of feeding the negativity in this life.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Heal


On page 57, the author beings a discussion on forgiveness.  For years, I have been of the mindset that while I did not dwell on the past, I was not required to forgive those who wronged me. When I read the following statement, it finally clicked.

I always say that all forgiveness is self-forgiveness because with resentment, unforgiveness, or rancor I may hold towards another, all of those thoughts are happening within me.

Recently I have started studying Buddhism, and I believe that the statement above is directly related to that type of mindset. When I get angry at someone, I hold that anger inside me. That anger eats at me. It has no impact on anyone but me. I feel the pain of it constantly. While I may not think if it all the time, there are reminders, such as seeing someone's face or a memory that pops into my head, that triggers that same feeling each time.  With forgiveness, I'm not approving their behavior.  I'm not giving in. I am however, allowing myself to say, this no longer has the power to make me sad. This no longer has the power to cause me pain because I forgive this behavior and I remove this behavior from having power in my life.
Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Heal


Chapter six has to be my favorite chapter of the book because it takes a subject that I hold near and dear to my heart into the limelight. It address how Food and Nature are medicine. It provides healing tips as well as quotes around how to use food to heal the body.  We are provided with a discussion on Epstein-Barr, Hashimoto's Thyroiditis and other autoimmune illnesses that can be treated with food. 

Frozen wild blueberries are the most healing fruit on the planet and far superior to larger cultivated blueberries.  They pull heavy metals out of the brain and aid in the recovery from neurological problems.

The final chapter talks about Tapping the Intangible with a quote from Carl Sagan.


Science is not only compatible with spirituality; it is a profound source of spirituality.


It goes on to provide examples of spiritual steps from meditation to prayer that has caused positive health changes in the lives of those practicing. The author invites us to imagine illness to wellness with an exercise on using our brain to literally change the way our body feels.  Ancient practices such as yoga are a way to reset or bring our body mind connection back into balance. As a student of yoga, I have been focusing these last few weeks on strengthening my connection to the simple breath as a way to continue to create a healing environment for my body. With dietary changes and listening to my body when it needs to rest, I have been able to reverse several serious inflammatory diseases that were creating havoc in my body.  Using gratitude, visualizations and meditation, I have been able to make significant changes in my overall health and well-being.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Heal


If you're looking for a book that outlines the basic steps you can take right now to create positive change in your life, I would say this is the book for you.  I'm not big on books that promote Christianity as it has done so much harm in our world today, I will give the author a pass on the quotes from the Christian Bible.  The ability to provide alternatives to prayer, such as meditation was enough to make the book something that I would recommend for others.

Overall, the book offers a positive way to work with the natural world of food and thought as a healing mechanism for what ails ya!


If you're interested in learning more about my journey of self healing I encourage you to follow my Facebook Page - Real Rations.  I share information on healing the body with medicine and mindfulness.  A process that has resulted in a 135 lb weight loss for both my husband and I as well as curing a range of illnesses from Fibromyalgia to High Blood Pressure.
Renee Olson
                                                                                                        
Elijah Olson


Revolutionary Witchcraft - A Review

Today I'm reviewing Revolutionary Witchcraft A Guide to Magical Activism by Sarah Lyons.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Revolutionary Witchcraft

Author Links - Link
Amazon Book Link
Amazon Author Link
Good Reads Book Link
Good Reads Author Link
My Good Reads Profile
My Facebook Page

Release Date - November 5, 2019

Generally I like to start out with a disclaimer. I am an contemporary witch.  I look for the connection between magic and science without the need to search for a creator. I receive no compensation for these reviews and all my links are standard Amazon links and not affiliate links. I am a practicing photo reader and have spent the last 16 years honing my craft.  I offer personal readings by request and have a strong online history that boasts over 429,000 views.


When they say great things come in small packages, they were referring to this book.  While the size of the book is small, the content within is larger than life.  The cover is a mixture of a hard/soft cover and the short stature makes it easy to toss into a purse or backpack for reading on the go. The author has provided not only a healthy index but also a hefty appendix that goes on in great detail on spell books, rituals and even a new way to look at the wheel of the year. The illustrations are fantastic and show a representation of witches of color in an inclusive way. This reaches directly into the heart of the current life we're seeing in magical workings for social justice.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Revolutionary Witchcraft

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Revolutionary Witchcraft


The books begins with an introduction to activism and the place that a witch holds in that fight. The author defines magic, politics, witchcraft and the history related to how magic was used in our ancient past. As she continues through the chapters, the author provides direction for connecting with the ancestors as well as instruction on shaking off this mundane and delving deeply into the craft for the betterment of all beings.  I would note there is at least one mention of the Bible in one of the chapters and it seems to lean to the side that witches are predominately female. While I understand that for most of the world the word witch equates to someone who is female, I would loved to have seen the author set aside that particular notion and allow a non gendered view or allowing space for those who may identify as male, masculine or any other gender variant to be included in the discussion.  That being said, I would like to acknowledge how the author said that they felt that witchcraft was a verb and not a noun.  To me, witch is a title. It isn't a title like Mr. or Mrs. but more like Doctor.  Note, it isn't specifically said in this book that only witches can be female, it is just what I perceived to be implied by the context of the book.  This was my opinion and your mileage may vary. 

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Revolutionary Witchcraft

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Revolutionary Witchcraft

This is one of the first modern witch books I have read that directly calls out to sitting public officials. In the section on Revolutionary History, the author specifically points to the 2016 election as being the catalyst for political witchcraft. To me this has two possible implications.  One, it flies into the face of "be silent".  If I want to work my magic, I want to do so in secret. I want to make sure they have no idea that I'm coming.  There is also an old tale about saying a person's name gives them power. Case in point, many today some 3 years after taking office, still refuse to use the word President as it related to Donald Trump. I'm assuming the opinion is, not saying it removes its validity. We would need to examine his actions and the impact they have had on society as a whole in order to see if that is actually the case. But I digress...

As we move through the book, the author takes us through initiation, journeying, dreaming and soul flight. Reminding us that as witches we are stewards of the land. The section on Standing Rock, I found particularly moving. Many books have lofty goals when it comes to recommending what witches can and cannot do.  This book actually provides real world examples of how to get involved in local politics, creating an organization and working with allies of all activity styles. From creating sigils and working with crystals to joining protests and working on access to voting this book provides ways to actually get involved with your community to create positive change.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Revolutionary Witchcraft

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Revolutionary Witchcraft


Finally, I wanted to call out one part of the appendix that I found pretty amazing and have added to my magical practice.  As a witch (a River Witch) I spend a great deal of time directly in the path of the water. My home sets on native land stolen by colonizers, and homes and families destroyed, a great people were pushed away and nearly destroyed. Today, they are still being attacked at the highest levels of our government.  On page 141 the author provides a statement to the land, acknowledging the rightful ownership of the first peoples to inhabit this nation and face subsequent attack by those coming in and destroying their world. The statement is as follows:

We honor and acknowledge the land we stand on. This is occupied territory that was once called (NAME) and is the home to (Tribe/Nation). We acknowledge that this land was stole by settlers, and that the mistreatment of its first people continues to this day. While we live in a world that settlers created, we promise to work on building a better world with the help and leadership of the land's original inhabitants. We honor this land and thank you for the many gifts you give us each day. Thank you for allowing us to fight on, with and for you.
Photo Credit  - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Location - Seven Springs, NC


My personal statement:

I honor and acknowledge the Catabwa and Tuscarora  people who lived here on this land I now occupy. I want to thank them for allowing me to be here and to continue to grace my visions and my ritual with their energy.  I acknowledge that my direct ancestors stole this land and claimed it as their own and are now know as the founders of this place called Seven Springs. I live today in a world created by that carnage and can only hope that my promise to work towards a better world will allow the land here to begin to heal from this heart break.


Photo Credit  - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Location - The Cliffs of the Neuse State Park
Overall, this is a pretty powerful piece of work.  It was written in a very straight forward easy to read language. It is modern and yet still holds on to those basics that most witches will be able to see right away. I was skeptical at first, but I must say I was/am pleasantly surprised by the depth of the book and appreciated the author's guidance on inclusive speech, healing speech and open honest dialog about how our nation needs to heal from colonization.




The Antique Anatomy Tarot - A Review

Today I'm reviewing The Antique Anatomy Tarot by Claire Goodchild.


Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Deck

Author Links - Link
Amazon Book Link
Amazon Author Link
Good Reads Book Link
Good Reads Author Link
My Good Reads Profile
My Facebook Page


Generally I like to start out with a disclaimer. I am an contemporary witch.  I look for the connection between magic and science without the need to search for a creator. I receive no compensation for these reviews and all my links are standard Amazon links and not affiliate links. I am a practicing photo reader and have spent the last 16 years honing my craft.  I offer personal readings by request and have a strong online history that boasts over 412,000 views.


To add to my growing list of Tarot and Oracle card reviews, the set I'm looking at today is completely different than any other I have encountered.  I am well aware of those who collect these cards for their artistic worth however, I have never seen a set quite like this.  I'll give you the low down, in just a bit.  First let's talk about the packaging.  Tarot cards generally come in some sort of box or enclosure that would allow the reader to keep the cards safe from harm.  Each set generally is accompanied by a book or pamphlet to instruct the reader on how the author intended the cards to be used. The Antique Anatomy Tarot is no exception.


Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Deck

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Deck


The books is a soft cover book with a cover to match the beautifully illustrated cards. While there is no index, the author does provide is with a brilliantly illustrated contents section which leads into the introduction and a brief history of Tarot.  We're introduced to the Major and Minor Arcana, Numerology and Astrology of Tarot in the first few pages.  We are whisked through the elements of the tarot including a list of which cards fall into which elements and then leading into how color impacts a reading.  


Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Deck

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Deck


On pages 14 - 17 the author provides detailed information on how exactly to use the cards.  Journaling, spells work, dream interpretations, mediation and spreads are presented with instruction on how to move forward in their individual works.  One of the most important steps, in my opinion, and often overlooked by new readers is detailed in the section called "Caring for your Deck".  The author provides instructions on initiating, cleansing and storage of your deck.


Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Deck

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Deck


The final chapter in the basics section is called (drum roll please)  The Spreads!  What we've all been waiting for. As with most Tarot decks, this author has also provided several spreads that are outlined in detail.  A single card draw, the Three Card Spread, the Moon Cycle Spread (this one was new to me) and finally the Celtic Cross spread. Each one with individual attention paid to the card location and name as well as a sentence or two about the placement and expectations for the reading.


Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Deck

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Deck


The remainder of the book focuses on the cards themselves. This is the point when I call out the amazing illustrations on these cards. Sourced from creative commons works, these cards are suitably for framing.  Overall, an amazing set of cards which I totally recommend!

The Spells Deck - A Review

Today I'm reviewing The Spells Deck by Cat Cabral and illustrations by Kim Knoll.


Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - The Spells Deck

Author Links
Illustrator Links
Amazon Book Link
Amazon Author Link
Amazon Illustrator Link
Good Reads Book Link
Good Reads Author Link
Good Reads Illustrator Link
My Good Reads Profile
My Facebook Page


Generally I like to start out with a disclaimer. I am an contemporary witch.  I look for the connection between magic and science without the need to search for a creator. I receive no compensation for these reviews and all my links are standard Amazon links and not affiliate links. I am a practicing photo reader and have spent the last 16 years honing my craft.  I offer personal readings by request and have a strong online history that boasts over 429,000 views.

Over the last few years, I've noticed that the publishers are beginning to send me more oracle, tarot and fortune telling decks to review. This month alone I have three brand new decks to review and two more on the way.  I always post about how a book feels in my hands.  As these decks are intended to be functional tools, I'll be providing a similar review. The texture of a card, the look and feel of the it and the general "feel" when held, is a very personal experience.  So as always, your mileage may vary.

The very first thing I noticed about this set was the box feel. It has that same soft suede type feel that is present is so many new soft cover books these days.  The box of these cards slides out from the bottom. Luckily I was quick and caught it before it dropped out completely and tossed the cards all over the floor.  Initially, not a good start.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - The Spells Deck


The pamphlet inside is 16 pages long and provides an introduction to the deck and a "how to use this deck" section, both around 100 words.  The majority of the pages are dedicated to explaining the wheel of the year, the phases of the moon and the magical days of the week.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - The Spells Deck
Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - The Spells Deck


The cards themselves are pretty plain as far as art is concerned.  A lot of text, a small icon of the card and the category printed at the bottom.  Unlike other decks with elaborate art and specific spread associated, this deck has a minimalist approach to design and suggests the one card draw from each of the eight categories technique. It recommends selecting a card and random and allowing your intuition to do the rest.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - The Spells Deck


Each card is written clear concise wording and provides an appropriate tone for each.  In the category of Intuitive awareness, we find the Hecate card.  The icon for this card is a sun cross. The author instructs us to take two purple candles into a secluded place or at a crossroad, light the candle, one off the other and then circle the path three times with our "torches" lifted.  We are asked to look into our minds and listen for the words of Hecate to impart her wisdom unto us and grant us the courage to overcome our obstacles.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - The Spells Deck


The author describes this deck as a witch's divination tool and a guide to ritual magic for all practice levels.  She gives us an overview of witchcraft in general and offers a the reader a way to begin the magic by working with the Initiation card.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - The Spells Deck


This card provides a brief incantations for dedicating oneself to the pursuit of witchcraft for a year and a day with the following chant times three:

"I'm proud to be a witch, a weaver of magic, guided by nature, a child of Divine Spirit. I choose to walk the wild path of the craft. Blessed be!"


While others may scoff at a self initiation or perhaps think less of someone who walks the solitary path, I have but four words for the initiate -  So mote it be!

Over all this is a pretty good deck.  At first I thought, wow, a spell deck?  What the in world?  I was thinking this was going to like an oracle deck or a tarot deck.  But no.  This is like Hooked on Phonics for Witches.  (You know you remember that program) This deck provides a great deal of knowledge even thought the design of the box itself is a bit lacking in my opinion.  A great gift for a witchling or a newly initiate of the craft.  For the more seasoned witch, the deck offers a new way to look at the symbolism we have worked with for ages as well as an assortment of oil blends, spell work and much more.

I highly recommend.



Sacred Geometry of Relationships Oracles - A Review

Today I'm reviewing Sacred Geometry of Relationships Oracles by LON.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - Book


Author Links - Link
Beyond Words Book Link
Beyond Words Author Link
My Good Reads Profile
My Facebook Page

Release date: September 17, 2019

Generally I like to start out with a disclaimer. I am an contemporary witch.  I look for the connection between magic and science without the need to search for a creator. I receive no compensation for these reviews and all my links are standard Amazon links and not affiliate links. I am a practicing photo reader and have spent the last 16 years honing my craft.  I offer personal readings by request and have a strong online history that boasts over 412,000 views.

I have to start by saying the imagery in this deck is absolutely stunning. Each card presents a view of sacred geometry in a rainbow of colors. The cards are slightly over sized in width which makes them a bit more of a challenge for someone with small hands to shuffle.  The instruction book is larger than the cards which makes it a bit more cumbersome for putting in a bag to toss in a backpack or purse, however they both fit nicely in the box provided for taking your readings on the road.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - Book

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - Book


The book begins with an overall introduction of the deck with a visual affirmations and instructions on deck preparation.  The book provides five draw or deck layouts with one for a quick one card draw and a more advanced seven card draw along the gender binary.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - Book

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - Book


The appendix contains a brief glossary as well as a overview of basic numerology, color symbolism and symbology. The stand out on these cards is the art.  I cannot tell you how beautiful these cards are. I really was drawn to number 21 - FREEDOM card. It refers to being about to change or move freely. I was even more stuck by it when I found that my deck contained two of these cards.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - Book

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - Book


Overall a beautiful deck with a strong accompanying guide. I highly recommend checking out these.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - Book

My Pocket Chakra Healing - A Reivew

Today I'm reviewing My Pocket Chakra Healing by Heidi E. Spear

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - Book


Author Links - Link
Amazon Book Link
Amazon Author Link
Good Reads Book Link
My Good Reads Profile
My Facebook Page

Release Sept 10, 2019

Generally I like to start out with a disclaimer. I am an contemporary witch.  I look for the connection between magic and science without the need to search for a creator. I receive no compensation for these reviews and all my links are standard Amazon links and not affiliate links. I am a practicing photo reader and have spent the last 16 years honing my craft.  I offer personal readings by request and have a strong online history that boasts over 412,000 views.


Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - Book


As always I'll start with a review of the physical book. This is a small soft cover book with an elastic band to keep it closed. The cover is made from a soft suede like material that always feels a little strange to me when I hold it.  I do like the size of the book.  The best books, to me, are ones that can be easily tossed into a backpack or handbag for on the go reading.  This one fits the bill.

This book gives the reader an overview of the basics of chakras as well as what the benefits to chakra healing.  It goes further to include a fantastic section on Balancing Chakras with Crystals, Colors and Reike.  The color therapy section is by far one of the best I have come across and I completely agree with the author on the section related to finding a professional Reike healer. Using your wardrobe to pull in the color therapy you need is key for a strong flow in your life. I wear red often to pull in the power of the root chakra and help bring about that energy to heal the body at a cellular level.  Red is also great for heart and blood circulation.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - Book


The chapter on working with the breath or pranayama is something I really enjoyed. As someone with a certification in yoga much of my day is spent in a state of listening to the breath.  I have found this to be key in helping maintain a balance over my anxiety and stress.  Understanding how to do use Ujjay to find peace within is an amazing feat. It also can be neat way to bring your Star Wars loving friends into the "dark side" when they hear your breathing like Darth Vadar.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Photo Source - Book


Overall this is a fantastic beginner book to learning how to unblock, balance and strengthen your Chakras. I found the breath work extremely helpful and highly recommend taking the time to read this book.


Adaptogens Herbs for Strength, Stamina and Stress Relief

Today I'm reviewing Adaptogens Herbs for Strength, Stamina, and Stress Relief by David Winston.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Adaptogens



Author Links - Link
Amazon Book Link
Amazon Author Link
Good Reads Book Link
Good Reads Author Link
My Good Reads Profile
My Facebook Page


Generally I like to start out with a disclaimer. I am an contemporary witch.  I look for the connection between magic and science without the need to search for a creator. I receive no compensation for these reviews and all my links are standard Amazon links and not affiliate links. I am a practicing photo reader and have spent the last 16 years honing my craft.  I offer personal readings by request and have a strong online history that boasts over 412,000 views.


Today this book will be reviewed by Guest Reviewer Elijah Olson.  He is well versed in health, wellness and nutrition, currently working towards several nutritional studies degrees and a hobbyist in permaculture, and general gardening.

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Adaptogens

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Adaptogens



Adaptogens
Herbs for Strength, Stamina, and Stress Relief


Let's start by introducing the authors; David Winston, RH (AHG) , is a clinical herbalist and ethnobotanist with 50 years of training in Chinese, Western/Eclectic, and Southwestern herbal traditions. Steven Maimes has studied natural medicine for over 30 years. A researcher, freelance writer, and principle of SALAM Research.

The book has now been updated and expanded this year (2019) from its first edition in 2007. 

The information is laid out in a comprehensive three part layout. Part one gives a good introduction of what Herbal Adaptogens are, the history, actions and health benefits. Part two starts with full color monographs on adaptogens for identification, as well as in-depth information for the well researched adaptogens. 
Also covered in this section is comprehensive information on nervines, nootropics and restorative tonics.
Part three covers herbal adaptogens in use, including information on clinical use, herbs in combination and also an added chapter on adaptogens for our pets.


Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Adaptogens

Photo Credit - Renee Sosanna Olson
Image Source - Adaptogens


I really enjoyed the layout of the book, it is easy to locate what you are looking for specifically. There is both a good index and glossary for those of us that may struggle with trying to remember or get lost in every clinical or herbal term. The authors have really given us a thorough reference book for daily use. 
So if you are interested in a very detailed, easy to pick up and find a tonic, tea, or food to prepare with ALL the healthy information including dosages attached...this is the book for you.