Albert Shiell

Albert Björn Shiell

Lecture & Workshop Host

LECTURE: 9 Natures Good and Bad – Icelandic Magical Herbalism

Icelandic folk magic is often overlooked save for the most commonly known magical staves and notions of Viking age witchcraft. In reality the magic of this small nation permeates every corner of the island, throughout time, from the Viking age settlers, to Catholic wizard priests, and later Lutheran ‘stave-crafters’. Icelandic magical herbalism is most often ignored or not deemed as useful as the galdrastafir many practitioners flock to. But the herbs and plants of Iceland have deep magic, known to the wise throughout the islands history. In this lecture we will discuss a little of the cultural and spiritual background that this branch of magical herbalism comes from, before diving into an exhibition of herbal workings gathered from around the country. Learn about the balance of power between Icelandic rowan and juniper, how one can harm and heal with goat willow, how yarrow and meadowsweet reveal the truth and moonwort opens paths. This lecture will mainly draw from the recordings of 19th and 20th Icelandic folklorists, while examining links to the distant past, as well as how Icelandic magical staves and spoken charms are worked with them for all sorts of uses.

WORKSHOP: Wrist in Rowan – Icelandic Magical Staves in Herbalism
3 HOUR INTENSIVE– space is limited to 15 participants

In this workshop we will learn practical techniques for plant magic inspired by and built upon Icelandic folklore and galdrastafir tradition. We will learn how we can work plant materia alongside the use of magical staves. Which trees and plants the folklore tells us to use alongside them, and which trees and plants we work with locally to build on that folklore. We will cover a little on the history and tradition of staves in Iceland, how we can create our own staves and which plants may be better to work alongside them. Participants will leave with a small blend of Icelandic herbal tea, as well as printer resources on the material covered in the workshop.

$65 workshop add on fee
$10 materials fee

BIO: Albert Schiell is a practicing folk magician and seiðkarl, hailing from Sussex, England. He has lived in Reykjavík, Iceland nearly 10 years, walking the land and working with the spirits that call it home. Author of Icelandic Plant Magic, his work focuses mostly on the union of Iceland magical plants, folklore and magical staves.

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