Oberon Zell-Ravenheart and The Church of All Worlds

Posted in People on November 19, 2009 – 7:40 PM
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For all of Oberon’s followers, Oberon’s birthday is November 30th, best wishes Oberon!



Oberon Zell-Ravenheart:

A Brief Bio

Oberon Zell-Ravenheart (born 11/30/42) has accomplished many things in his long and colorful career. A modern Renaissance man, Oberon is a transpersonal psychologist, metaphysician, naturalist, theologian, shaman, author, artist, sculptor, lecturer, teacher, and ordained Priest of the Earth-Mother, Gaia. Those who know him well consider him to be a true Wizard in the traditional sense. He is also an initiate in the Egyptian Church of the Eternal Source, a Priest in the Fellowship of Isis, and an initiate in several different Traditions of Witchcraft. He holds academic degrees in sociology, anthropology, clinical psychology, teaching, and theology.

On April 7, 1962, inspired by Robert A. Heinlein’s 1961 science-fiction novel, Stranger in a Strange Land, Oberon co-founded the Church of All Worlds. He has served as the Church’s Primate ever since. First to apply the terms “Pagan” and “Neo-Pagan” to the newly emerging Nature religions of the 1960s, and through his publication of the award-winning Pagan magazine, Green Egg (1968-1975; 1988-2000; 2007-), Oberon was instrumental in the coalescence of the Neo-Pagan movement, which for the past third of a century has been reclaiming the religious heritage of pre-Christian Europe. (Identified as the fastest-growing religion in the English-speaking world, US membership in the Pagan community is currently estimated in the millions.)


In 1970, Oberon formulated and published the thealogy of deep ecology which has become known as The Gaia Thesis—that our entire planetary biosphere comprises the body of a single vast living organism universally identified as “Mother Earth.” He met his soulmate, Morning Glory, at the Llewellyn-sponsored Gnostic Aquarian Festival in 1973, where he was a keynote speaker on the Gaia Thesis. They were legally married on
April 14, 1974, in a spectacular Pagan handfasting in Minneapolis.


For eight years (1977-1985) Oberon and Morning Glory lived in a 5,600-acre intentional community called
Greenfield Ranch, in the mountains of northern California, establishing a rural homestead and a Pagan retreat center. During this period they created large festivals, vision quests, ceremonies, and ritual events on the land. This work continues to this day on Annwfn.


Oberon and Morning Glory co-founded the Ecosophical Research Association in 1977, and their research into arcane lore and ancient legends resulted in the Living Unicorn project, begun in 1980. For the next four years they traveled all over North America exhibiting their authentic Medieval-style Unicorns at Renaissance Faires, before arranging a four-year exhibition contract with Ringling Bros./Barnum & Bailey Circus—“The Greatest Show on Earth”—which brought these legendary creatures to millions throughout the world.


In Feb. 1985, Oberon organized an ERA diving expedition to
Australia and New Guinea which identified the species of the mysterious “Ri” and solved the ages-old mystery of the Mermaid; and in 1987 he conducted a research tour of ancient oracles and archaeological sites throughout Mediterranean Europe. Other magical journeys have taken Oberon to Peru, Hawaii, Alaska, back to Australia, and, in 1999, to the British Isles for the century’s last total Eclipse of the Sun.


Oberon is the author of numerous published articles on history, Gaian thealogy, magic, shamanism, mythology, anomalies, dinosaurs, archaeology, cosmology, and related topics, and has been interviewed and quoted extensively in many books on New Age religious movements and the occult. With many years of theatrical experience, Oberon has been an entertaining guest on a number of radio and television talk shows around the country (and in England, Canada and Australia), as well as being a regular featured speaker at various Pagan festivals and conventions. Oberon is also an accomplished ritualist, creating and conducting rites of passage, seasonal celebrations, Mystery initiations (such as the Eleusinia and the Panathenaia), Earth-healings and other rituals for up to 3,000 people.


Oberon’s artwork has illuminated the pages of various fantasy, science-fiction, and metaphysical magazines since the late 1960’s, as well as illustrating a number of books. His T-shirt designs may still be seen at any gathering of environmental activists. His favorite art project, however, is his ongoing sculpture series of ancient Gods and Goddesses, and of mythological creatures, currently marketed through TheaGenesis LLC, as the Mythic Images Collection. His masterwork is “The Millennial Gaia.”


Oberon and Morning Glory Zell-Ravenheart have had a special relationship with the Association for Consciousness Exploration for over 25 years, and between them they have appeared at over 20 Starwood Festivals (and a few WinterStar Symposiums). Largely because of their continuing participation, there has been a
Church of All Worlds presence at Starwood, called the CAWmunity, for over a decade, and pivotal events in the saga of the C.A.W. have played themselves out on the stages of Starwood.

In 2002, Oberon gathered together many of the best-known minds in the Neo-Pagan movement to form the “Grey Council.” In 2004 Oberon and the Council published Grimoire for the Apprentice Wizard, a book filled with the accumulated wisdom and insight of dozens of the most experienced magicians, priests, artists, and authors in Pagandom. Also in 2004, Oberon created his proudest accomplishment, the online Grey School of Wizardry (www.GreySchool.com). The Grey School currently offers over 300 classes in 16 Departments, at seven levels, with more than 750 students aged 11-75. The faculty number 40 highly-qualified teachers. Graduates are certified “Journeyman Wizards.” Oberon is the school’s Headmaster, and has been called “The real Albus Dumbledore.”

Oberon and Morning Glory currently reside in Sonoma County, California.


Oberon on YouTube:

http://au.youtube.com/user/shambhallah

http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=Rj7mI4kirlc

From http://www.oberonzell.com/OZAbout.html


Posted and edited by Magickal Winds


A Chronology

1961 I begin freshman year at Westminster College, Fulton, MO, where I meet Lance Christie and Martha McCance.


1962 Lance and I read Stranger in a
Strange Land and share water (April 7), vowing to begin living the dream set forth therein. We form a Nest, and I begin publishing The Atlan Torch.


1963 I marry Martha, and we have a son, Bryan (born Sept. 15).


1965 I graduate from college; begin graduate school at
Washington University in St Louis; begin new Nest there.


1966 I quit graduate school, begin working for Human Development Corp as Head Start Counselor. Star Trek premiers on TV (Sept. 8).


1967 In Sept, I first go public with Church of All Worlds, apply for incorporation. I begin using term “Pagan” as self-identification for our religion. I complete college for a DD, become ordained as first Priest of CAW.


1968 CAW receives corporate status; we open our first coffee house/temple; I begin publishing Green Egg (all in March). I also obtain a Teacher’s Certificate and begin teaching grade school. We close the first
Temple in Sept.


1969 With Fred Adams of Feraferia and others, we found the Council of Themis—the first Pagan ecumenical council. CAW Nest meeting held at homes on Friday nights, for Star Trek. Sci-Fi Worldcon in
St Louis (Labor Day)—I attend as my first Worldcon, and meet many people…


1970 April: We open a new storefront
Temple. I do my first acid trip (at Solar Eclipse, March 7); I meet Julie (April 1); CAW major participant at first Earth Day (April 22). CAW gets its IRS 501(c)(3) (June 18). On Sept. 6 I have major Vision of the Living Earth, which I write up as “TheaGenesis.” This is the first publication of what later becomes known as “The Gaea Thesis.”


1971 Martha and I separate, later to divorce. Julie and I travel to East Coast for Sci-Fi Worldcon. We meet Susan Roberts, Ray Buckland, Leo Martello, Robert Rimmer, and many famous Witches. I begin correspondence with Robert Heinlein.


1972 Council of Themis dissolves due to internal dissension; Council of Earth Religions formed. Julie and I attend Sci-Fi WorldCon in
Los Angeles; win Grand Prize in costume contest as “Cernunnos & Cerridwen.” We meet many Califia Pagans, travel up to San Francisco and Greenfield Ranch to see the new land being bought into…


1973 Julie and I break up in Spring. I hitchhike to Rainbow Family Gathering in Lander, WY. Get arrested in
Colo. for hitchhiking. Meet Bonnie Sherlock—receive initiation. I attend Gnostic Aquarian festival in Minneapolis at Mabon, as a keynote speaker on TheaGenesis. There I meet and fall in love with Morning Glory. She moves in with me.


1974 MG and I are married in huge public Pagan handfasting in
Minneapolis (April 12). Isaac Bonewits & Carolyn Clark officiate; Margot Adler sings Gwydion songs. We share water with Robert Anton Wilson. MG and I attend Sci-Fi Worldcon in Wash. DC, win 1st prize in costume contest as “most primal.”


1975 I quite my job, rent out the house (now put into name of CAW), buy and fix up an old school bus: “The Scarlet Succubus.”


1976 MG and I leave
St Louis for West Coast. After many adventures, we end up in Eugene, OR, where we teach classes on “Celtic Shamanism” at Lane Community college. Our research uncovers the lost secret of the Unicorn. Back in St Louis, GE folds. Soon, so does CAW.


1977 Morning Glory and I move onto 5,600-acre
Greenfield Ranch as caretakers on 220-acre parcel named Coeden Brith, owned by Alison Harlow. Our plan: to raise Unicorns! Next door neighbor is Gwydion Pendderwen. Form Holy Order of Mother Earth (HOME) with Alison. We begin real land-based Pagan life, transfer CAW HQ to Califia.


1979 Total Eclipse of the Sun (Feb. 26) over full-scale
Stonehenge replica in Washington state. MG and I officiate at rites, along with many other Pagan luminaries. 3-4,000 people attend. We clear the clouds, get much media attention! I receive new name of “Otter.”


1980 March—first baby Unicorns. HUGE thing! We spend most of year out in the world doing interviews, etc. We apply for patent on Unicorn process. Our life changes radically as we find ourselves traveling to make appearances, do Ren Faires, etc. over next few years.


1981 We go on Chautauqua with performers from the
Oregon Country Faire, traveling around Pacific Northwest in caravan of buses.


1982 March: “Goddess Rising” conference in
Sacramento. Many prominent pagan leaders attend—get to meet each other. Doing Ren Faires all summer, MG and I don’t see each other for 4 months. I meet and fall in love with Bella Dona and Jeanné. At Samhain, Gwydion is killed in a car wreck. Our first death. Serious grieving; begin creating darker rituals.


1983 We found the local Hometown Festival, and lead the parade down
Main Street with our Unicorn. In the fall, taking pottery classes at the local college, I meet and fall in love with Diane Darling.


1984 We sign a 4-year exhibition lease for several of our Unicorns with Ringling Bros./Barnum & Bailey Circus. Diane and her son, Zack, move in with us.


1985 We mount a diving expedition to
New Guinea to videotape and solve the mystery of the “Mermaids” sighted there. On the way, we visit Australia, connect with local Pagans. In the Fall, we leave Greenfield Ranch and move to “The Old Same Place.”


1986 Morning Glory and I create our dream store, “Between the Worlds,” bringing in Diane Darling and several others. After a couple of years, we pass it on to King & Joan Collins, who rename it “The Grey Whale.” In the fall, we found the Ukiah Hometown Festival, and for many years thereafter we lead the parade down
Main Street in our full Ren Faire regalia—with a Unicorn.


1987 In March, I go on a month-long pilgrimage with Bella Dona to
Spain, France, Italy, Greece, and Crete. In August, CAW sponsors big public 20th anniversary of Summer of Love at the park, with live bands, free food, etc. MG & I create ritual passing of torch to next generation.


1988 April—MG and I present at CIIS (
Calif. Institute of Integral Studies) Conf. on Gaia Consciousness. At Beltane, Diane and I resurrect Green Egg 20 years after first issue. MG and I win May Games to become King & Queen of the May. Robert Heinlein dies May 8. At Samhain, I have vision of recreating Eleusinian Mysteries.


1989 March 19—MG, Diane and I handfast as Triad.


1990 April 20—20th anniversary of first Earth Day. We participate in major way. In Beltane issue of GE, MG coins term “Polyamory.” Labor Day—Heartland Pagan Festival in
Kansas City hosts CAW Grand Reunion, bringing many old CAW-folk together again. We begin conducting elaborate annual recreations of Eleusinian Mysteries. At Samhain, I join Anodea and others for a Magickal Mystery Tour to Peru, where we connect with Quechua shamans.


1991 At Midsummer Gathering of Tribes in GA, Julie shows up and we reconnect. I found the Universal Federation of Pagans (UFP). Summer—I go on Magickal Mystery Tour to Crater Lake and lava caves, led by Richard Ely. Labor Day—we do major presentation, opening & closing rituals, at first big Poly-Con in
Berkeley.


1992 30th anniversary of CAW founding, we hold wonderful Grand Convocation at 93-acre VM Ranch; create circle of magick to bring this place into our hands as our future home. With a newly-elected all-women Board of Directors, CAW becomes first legally-incorporated non-Christian church in
Australia.


1993 We conduct recreation of ancient Greek Panathenaia at Parthenon replica in
Nashville, TN, with 42-ft. statue of Athena. We meet Wolf at Samhain Gathering in Tenn.


1994 Diane quits GE. Maerian comes on-board as new Editor. At Beltane MG & I formally end our handfasting with Diane. In Aug. I drive to
Nashville with Orion & Maerian for 2nd Panathenaia. In Sept. after serving as Hades in Eleusinia, I receive new name of “Oberon.”


1995 In April, I meet Liza Gabriel at Craftwise Festival in
New England; begin serious relationship. In Nov. Wolf moves from Houston to join MG and me.


1996 Wynter Rose moves in with us in Feb., meets Wolf at Beltane. MG becomes High Priestess of CAW. Sept. 13, GE staff members who are also Officers of CAW BoD remove me from any control over the magazine I’d founded. Sept. 29, MG, Wolf and I handfasted as triad, with Liza & Wynter ladies-in-waiting. In Dec., Liza moves to
Cal., and we (Liza, Wynter, MG & I) all pull up stakes and move to VM Ranch. We commit to 2-year lease with option to buy.


1997 Wolf moves in with us, and we all take family name of “Ravenheart.” In Sept., MG leads tour to
Greece and Crete.


1998 I finish creation of “Millennial Gaia” statue just in time for Beltane. We offer her as incentive for membership renewal in CAW, raising $4,000 for our Church. In Aug. I am “impeached” as Primate by CAW BoD on what eventually turn out to be completely bogus charges, and take 1-year sabbatical from Primacy. MG and I return to
Australia for big Pagan festival. MG and Liza go to Hong Kong to arrange for production of Gaia statues. MG stays there for a month.


1999 We decide not to buy VM Ranch, due to escalating power struggles with CAW BoD, who want to control it, although not pay for it. We find new home for all Ravenhearts in Penngrove, supporting ourselves with our statuary business, Mythic Images www.MythicImages.com. In August, I travel with Ariel Monserrat to
England and France for final eclipse of 20th century, conducted at Boscanewen, an ancient stone circle in Cornwall. I meet Ken Kesey there, with his famous bus, “Furthur,” and give him Millennial Gaia “On The Bus.” Ariel and I are knighted by King Arthur.


2000 I convene Committee of Pagan leaders and initiate “Papal Apology Project” to ask Pope to include Pagans in his Apology for horrors of Inquisition, etc. We gather over 6,000 signatures. Pope does apologize for “crimes against indigenous peoples.” That Summer, major “Pagan Leaders
Summit” held in Indiana—I attend with many others.


2001 Our entire Ravenheart Family conducts major “Mystery Play” at Walpurgisnacht at Annwfn. We also conduct spectacular Eleusinian Mysteries in Sept, with Wolf & Wynter as Hades & Persephone. Our last year of involvement with CAW, whose current BoD is inimically hostile to me personally. Wolf & Wynter are married in July; MG and I officiate.


2002 40th anniversary of CAW. I am not invited to attend Annual Meeting.
Ohio BoD hires “secret lawyer” to abolish CAW Bylaws and replace them with “Constitution” to consolidate all power in the hands of the BoD. At Starwood (July) I formally disaffiliate with CAW. I am commissioned by New Page Books to write book of Wizardry for “Harry Potter generation.” I assemble “Grey Council” as advisory council for this project.


2003 Entire year spent writing Grimoire for the Apprentice Wizard.


2004 Grimoire published—enormously successful. I create online
Grey School of Wizardry www.GreySchool.com (incorporated March 14). CAW BoD in Ohio dissolves CAW Inc., intending to transfer all assets to new org. they’ve created: “Church of All Worlds International.” They threaten to sue me and Starwood organizers for presenting talk at Starwood: “The Rise and Fall of the Church of All Worlds.” I do anyway. A month later, the entire CAW BoD in Ohio resign en masse, and CAW’s corporate status reverts to California.


2005 Liza gets engaged to a man who’s hostile to the Ravenhearts. She evicts us all to sell the house, and we have to find new homes and move in Oct. MG and I find a wonderful place in the country, outside of Cotati. I’m writing two books, Companion for the Apprentice Wizard and Creating Circles & Ceremonies.


2006 Companion for the Apprentice Wizard and Creating Circles & Ceremonies both published. MG and I travel to Australia in Jan., as guests of honor at CAW Summer Gathering and AGM. Overwhelmed by the stress of moving, MG’s mother, Polly, who’s been living with us, dies in Feb. In March, MG is diagnosed with multiple myeloma (blood and bone cancer). With CAW now back in Califia, I am now Pres. of BoD, and we begin total overhaul of entire structure. Cat DeVille is pivotal figure in this.


2007 Julie O’Ryan creates personal website for me: www.OberonZell.com. Ariel Monserrat and Tom Donohue revive Green Egg as an e-zine, publishing the first issue at Ostara at www.GreenEggzine.com. I’m working constantly on my latest book—A Wizard’s Bestiary. Another Magnum Opus, it comes out in November.


2008 Julie moves to Guerneville, and becomes my Personal Assistant. I spend much of year working on Green Egg Omelette—an anthology of 40 years of GE magazine. In July, right after returning from Starwood, I am diagnosed with colon cancer, and have surgery on July 29. In October, I begin six months of chemotherapy.


2009 Green Egg Omelette comes out in January. CAW makes major splash at Pantheacon (Feb.) with main ritual (“
Phoenix Rising”) and hospitality suite. Working on next book: The Witch and the Wizard OZ, with John Sulak. I am Artist Guest of Honor at ConQuest 40 sci-fi con in Kansas City (May), and attend with Julie. We win costume contest as “Mother Earth & Rising Phoenix.” Morning Glory begins series of “Great Goddess Retreats” (June-Sept.).


From http://www.oberonzell.com/OZAbout.html

Posted and edited by Magickal Winds


The Church of All Worlds

A Brief History


It all began on April 7, 1962, when, after reading Stranger in a Strange Land, Tim Zell and Lance Christie shared water and formed a water-brotherhood called “Atl” at Westminster College at Fulton, Missouri. During the mid-1960s the group was centered on the University of Oklahoma campus at Norman under the name Atlan Foundation. A periodical, The Atlan Torch (later The Atlan Annals), was published from 1962-1968. Following a move to St. Louis, Missouri, in 1968 the Church of All Worlds was legally incorporated. In March of that year, the first issue of Green Egg appeared and over the years made Tim Zell, its editor, a major force in Neo-Paganism, a term which Zell coined. CAW was the first Neo-Pagan/Earth Religion to obtain full federal recognition, although it was initially refused recognition by the Missouri Department of Revenue on the basis of its lack of primary concern about the hereafter, God, the destiny of souls, heaven, hell, sin and its punishment, and other supernatural matters. The ruling was overturned as unconstitutional in 1971. The Church of All Worlds took much inspiration from the science fiction classic, Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert Heinlein. In the novel, Valentine Michael Smith was a human being born on Mars and raised by Martians. Upon being brought to Earth, he established the Church of All Worlds, built around “nests”, a combination of a congregations and an intentional communities. A basic concept was “grokking”, i.e., the ability to be fully empathic. Heinlein’s CAW emphasized non-possessive love and joyous expression of sexuality as divine union. Their greeting was “Thou art God” or “Thou art Goddess”, a recognition of immanent divinity in each person. The basic theology of the CAW is a pantheism focused on immanent rather than transcendent divinity, which is worshipped in female as well as a male form.

The most important theological statement came in revelatory writings by Zell in 1970-73, on a theory which later came to be known as the Gaia Thesis, a biological validation of the ancient intuition that the planet is a single living organism, Mother Earth. Pantheists hold as divine the living spirit of Nature. Thus the CAW recognizes Mother Earth, the Horned God, the Green Man and other spirits of animistic totemism as the Divine Pantheon. Church of All Worlds was an early forerunner of the Deep Ecology movement. Through its focus on Mother Nature as Goddess and its recognition and ordination of women as Priestesses, CAW can also rightly be held to be the first Eco-Feminist Church. Its only creed states: “The Church of All Worlds is dedicated to the celebration of life, the maximal actualization of human potential and the realization of ultimate individual freedom and personal responsibility in harmonious eco-psychic relationship with the total Biosphere of Holy Mother Earth.”

In 1974, CAW reported nests in Missouri, California, Illinois, Kansas, Wisconsin, Iowa, Wyoming, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, New Jersey, New York, and Ohio. It was then publishing two periodicals, Green Egg and The Pagan. Two years later Zell moved to Oregon with his new wife, Morning Glory, an ordained Priestess, for a rural life of writing, research and the practice of the religion he had developed. They left the administration of the CAW and the publication of the Green Egg in the hands of other Church leaders. After only a few more issues, the magazine ceased publication. Subsequently many Church Nests dissolved due to internal conflicts.

By the mid-1980s CAW survived only in California, focused around the sanctuary land bequeathed to the Church by its Bard, Gwydion Pendderwen. On and around this rural retreat, a Pagan homesteading community grew which included the Zells (Tim Zell had changed his first name to Otter in 1979 following a vision quest) and other long-time Church members who had moved to California, as well as many new people. Two new clergy were ordained during that time, Orion Stormcrow (a Church member since 1969) and Anodea Judith. (In 1991, Deborah Hamouris was ordained, bringing the present number of active clergy to six.) In the late 1980s, following Otter and Morning Glory’s emergence from eight years of living in the wilderness, the Church of All Worlds began reorganizing under the leadership of Anodea Judith. The membership program was radically upgraded to include a Progressive Involvement Program (PIP), intensive training courses and a new members newsletter, The Scarlet Flame. Activities and membership increased dramatically during this period as CAW emerged from its slumber. The first issue of Green Egg (The Next Generation!) appeared in May, 1988, the 20th anniversary of its original publication. It has risen to a position of prominence among Pagan periodicals. Diane Darling, who joined the Church in the mid-’80s, is its editrix, Otter its publisher and designer. In 1991, with 52 pages and a four-color glossy cover, Green Egg won the Silver Award from the Wiccan/Pagan Press Alliance (WPPA) for “Most Professionally Formatted Pagan Publication”. In 1992 Green Egg won the WPPA Gold Award for “Readers’ Choice” as well as the Dragonfest Awards for “Most Attractive Format” and “Best Graphics”. Diane won the Pentacle Award for “Favorite Pagan Editrix”, and Otter for “Favorite Pagan Writer”.

The non-fictional Church of All Worlds has grown far beyond Heinlein’s dream. There are nine concentric circles of member involvement, named after the planets and grouped into three rings. Each circle’s activity includes study, writings, magical training, sensitivity and encounter-group experience, as well as active participation in the life of the Church. The First Ring, Circles 1, 2, and 3, is for Seekers, those who are only participants. Second Ring, Circles 4 through 6, is made up of Scions, members who help run the church. The clergy, Council of the Third Ring, consists of legally ordained priests and priestesses; longtime members who have worked through the other circles, undergone personal and leadership development, religious training, and completed the Church’s ordination requirements. There are two governing bodies in addition to the Clergy: the Board of Directors, which determines policy and business matters, and the Fun Committee, which implements the activities and functions of the Church. The Fun Committee is made up of a Board member, a clergy member, and one representative from each of the church functions, such as Rites and Festivals, Publications, Membership, Communications and each subsidiary. There is an annual General Meeting to elect officers and make changes in the Church’s ever-evolving Bylaws. Worship involves attending weekly or monthly Nest meetings usually held in the homes of Nest members. Autonomous nests are composed of at least three members of 2nd Circle meeting monthly or more often. The basic liturgical form is based on a circle where a chalice of water is shared around as part of the ritual part of the Nest meeting. Longer events are celebrated at the Church sanctuary, Annwfn, a 55-acres of land in northern California. Annwfn has a two-story temple, cabins, garden, orchard and a small pond. It is maintained by a small community of resident caretakers. In addition to the eight Celtic seasonal festivals, the Church holds handfastings (marriages), vision quests, initiations, workshops, retreats, work parties and meetings on the land. As of 1993, the Church has ten chartered nests in California, with others in Florida, Illinois, Arizona, Maryland, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Australia (where CAW has become the first legally-incorporated Pagan church in that country). A number of proto-Nests are in the process of forming. Current President is priest Tom Williams (a member since 1968). Otter is presently engaged in the formation of the Universal Federation of Pagans (UFP), a worldwide association with which he hopes to unify the global Pagan community. 1992 was the 30th anniversary of the Church. A Grand Convocation was held in August, with an attendance of nearly 300. Membership at the end of 1993 was around 600.

The Mission Statement of the Church of All Worlds is as follows:

The mission of the Church of All Worlds is to evolve a network of information, mythology, and experience that provides a context and stimulus for reawakening Gaea, and reuniting Her children through tribal community dedicated to responsible stewardship and the general evolution of consciousness. Over the years, the Church of All Worlds has chartered a number of subsidiary branches through which it practices and teaches its religion:

  • Forever Forests : Box 212, Redwood Valley, CA 95470. Founded in 1977 by Gwydion Pendderwen; the ecology branch. Sponsors tree-planting events and rituals.
  • Lifeways : 2140 Shattuck #2093, Berkeley, CA 94704. Founded in 1983 by Anodea Judith; the teaching branch. Offers workshops, classes, healing rituals, recovery programs, wilderness excursions, and training for the priesthood. Handles the Progressive Involvement Program.
  • Nemeton : Box 610, Laytonville, CA 95454. Founded in 1972 by Gwydion Pennderwen and Alison Harlow; the marketing branch. Tapes and CDs, songbooks, T-shirts, philosophical tracts and books. Catalog available.
  • Ecosophical Research Assn. (ERA) : Box 982, Ukiah, CA 95482. Founded in 1977 by Morning Glory Zell; devoted to research and exploration in the fields of history, mythology and natural sciences. Produced the Living Unicorn, the New Guinea Mermaid expedition and a Peruvian Pilgrimage.
  • Holy Order of Mother Earth (HOME) : Box 212, Redwood Valley, CA 95470 Founded in 1977 by the Zells and Alison Harlow; magical and shamanic branch open only to trained initiates. Creates and conducts the Church’s rituals and ceremonies.* Peaceful Order of the Earth Mother (POEM) : Box 5227, Clearlake, CA 95422. Founded in 1988 by Willowoak Istarwood; dedicated to children and child nurturing. Provides enriching activities for children at gatherings, summer camps and a quarterly magazine for Pagan youth, How About Magic? (HAM) :$7 per year.
  • Green Egg : Box 1542, Ukiah, CA 95482. Award-winning quarterly journal of the New Paganism and the Gaian Renaissance, founded in 1968 by Otter Zell. Sample $6; subscription $15/yr US bulk mail; $21/yr US/Canada 1st class/envelope; $27/yr trans-Atlantic; $30/yr trans-Pacific.
  • Annwfn : Box 48, Calpella, CA 95418. CAW’s 55-acre land sanctuary and retreat in the Misty Mountains of Mendonesia. Write for Visitor’s Policy.
  • CAW Membership and General Correspondence :

(Australian Headquarters) PO Box 408, Woden, ACT 2606.

References:

Further information on the Church of All Worlds may be found in the following books:

  • Adler, Margot, Drawing Down the Moon: Witches, Druids, Goddess- Worshipers and other Pagans in America Today, Beacon Press, 1979; revised and updated 1987. (essential!)
  • Ellwood, Robert, Religious and Spiritual Groups in Modern America, 1973.
  • Gottleib, Annie, Do You Believe in Magic? The Second Coming of the Sixties Generation, Times Books, 1987
  • Guiley, Rosemary, Encyclopedia of Witches and Witchcraft, Facts on File, 1989; (extensive!)
  • The Perennial Encyclopedia of Mystical and Psychic Experience, 1990.
  • Jade, To Know, Delphi Press, 1991.
  • Martello, Leo Louis, Witchcraft, the Old Religion, University Books, 1973.
  • Melton, J. Gordon, The Encyclopedia of American Religions, from the Institute for the Study of American Religions, POB 90709, Santa Barbara, CA 93190 1979 ( 3rd edition, 1988); The Essential New Age, 1990.
  • Wilson, Robert Anton, Coincidence, Falcon Press, 1988

Posted and edited by Magickal Winds



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