LECTURE: Wedded to Death: The Use of Plants in the Initiation of a Witch

“Ach! My dear child, if I don’t rescue you, you will be lost!” cries the old woman in the Grimm Brothers’ story, “The Robber Bridegroom.” Yet the rescue does not occur until after the violence has taken place, and it is the young woman who must save herself.

The shadowy world of the fairy tale is one wherein evil fabricates traps, well hidden within societal mores and tradition. Here, the horrific happens with regularity, and its victims often have little recourse but to be ensnared. This fate befalls the young woman in “The Robber Bridegroom.” Yet the occult information the tale harbors regarding trauma and its transformative powers has not been explored sufficiently by modern scholars, who have tended to see the story as a warning on marrying outside of one’s clan.

In this presentation, Colleen will analyze the story from a completely different viewpoint, employing the lens of shamanism, and shamanism clothed as witchcraft. Here, she will offer an entirely new perspective on the tale, centering on the meaning of the mysterious three glasses of wine. Combining studies on shamanic rituals and medieval occult traditions related to plants and witchcraft is the key to understanding the secrets this story has held for eons. Hidden in plain sight, it offers a ciphered guide to the use of plants as an integral part of the journey to the underworld and the witch’s initiation by the spirits.

In stock



~Video Recordings from the 2022 online VGS are accessible for 30 days from purchase date~