Spell check: Modern-day witch writes a book about magical activism

Sarah Lyons

Call her a social justice warlock!

A modern-day witch will kick off her book tour with a night of spells and rituals in Bushwick. The author of “Revolutionary Witchcraft: A Guide to Magical Activism,” at Catland Books on Jan. 3, says that her book will teach the basics of adding some occult energy to your protest, and the grimoire’s launch party will really unearth some eldritch mysteries, with a lecture, workshop and guided meditation.

“If my book is a ‘101,’ then the tour is sort of a ‘102,’ ” said Sarah Lyons. “It’s to give people more of an in-depth look into some of the topics I am talking about in the book.” 

“Revolutionary Witchcraft” focuses its crystal ball on social justice issues and environmental activism, describing inclusive rituals and magical actions that can help the planet, while also describing mystical movements that have proved powerful in the past. 

“Magic to me is not something I separate from any part of my life,” Lyons said. “It’s for people who may be interested in activism and not know too much about witchcraft. Or may have an interest in witchcraft but doesn’t know how it can relate to politics.” 

Lyons discusses a protest by AIDS activists in Washington DC, where protesters marched the streets while carrying the ashes of their dead loved ones, as a magical ritual that looped in the spirits of the dead as a “force to be reckoned with.” 

Would-be witches can refer to the book for spells that can be incorporated into everyday life, including a “land acknowledgement” ceremony, designed to honor the land the spell casters stand on, and the indigenous people who once called it home. The “Trans Rite of Ancestor Elevation” is a a nine-day ritual practiced from Nov. 12–20 for gender non-conforming individuals to acknowledge their spritual ancestors, which non-magical people generally acknowledge with the one-day Trans Day of Remembrance. 

Lyons said magic is coming to an exciting time in history with more and more people opening their eyes and welcoming the mystical world into their lives. She credits this change of climate to an increase in political engagement and young people having a clear image of the changes needed to better the world. 

“Revolutionary Witchcraft 2020 Winter Tour” at Catland Books [987 Flushing Ave. between Bogart Street and Evergreen Avenue in Bushwick, (718) 418–9393, www.catlandbooks.com]. Jan. 3 at 7 pm. $15.