Community Teachers, Past and Present
Laura first began her spiritual work in 1986 at the Berkeley Psychic Institute studying meditation, energy work, and psychic healing. A year later she became involved with the Reclaiming Collective of San Francisco: taking magic classes, attending WitchCamps, dancing in the Spiral Dance, and radically transforming herself. Laura has taught at more than 17 Reclaiming WitchCamps since 1993, including those in Texas, Missouri, Michigan, California, Vermont, and Vancouver, BC.
Laura has taught and led workshops in dance, ritual, magic, and drumming at the Omega Institute in New York, as well as other locations around the U.S. She has recorded two drumming tapes and performed in numerous Goddess-themed theater pieces. In 1994 Laura moved to Los Angeles to teach yoga and was also one of the original founding members of Reweaving. Since 2004 she has been deeply immersed in the study and practice of Brazilian Spiritual Traditions and is initiated in the Umbanda tradition. She loves to hang from the trees and feels most at home dancing with the faeries in the woods…
Laurie is a 30-year magical practitioner who has studied Wicca, Thelema, Herbalism, Chaos Magick, Feri Tradition (with Gabriel Carrillo) and Tibetan Buddhism. She has taught and performed at the Starwood Festival, PantheaCon, Code Pink Women for Peace, and other national events. Laurie is a contributor to the Huffington Post’s Religion section and is a guest lecturer at the University of Southern California’s Department of Religious Studies. She was profiled in the book Modern Pagans (RE/Search, 2001) and her writings have appeared in PanGaia magazine, Green Egg, and Bitch Goddess: The Spiritual Path of the Dominant Woman (Greenery Press, 1998).
Laurie began attending Reclaiming rituals in 1992, first attended California WitchCamp in 1995, and is co-founder of Reclaiming’s Redwood Magic Family Camp. She priestessed with the Church of All Worlds, and was a member of the Crescent Hellions magical group with Tara and Sam Webster, Sharon Knight and Winter. Laurie studied at the Southern California Psychic Institute and graduated from the Berkeley Psychic Institute’s Women’s Clairvoyant Training program. A long-time environmentalist, she loves attending climate rallies with her kids and their adorable homemade signs.
As a witch, I like to work with the more subtle threads of community-weaving, both in priestessing in my community of Los Angeles and in interweaving magic into the tapestry of the overculture. I have been weaving magic through public rituals and teaching Reclaiming classes for several years, including both in Los Angeles area, the San Francisco Bay area, and California Witchcamp. I have always enjoyed exploring myriad aspects of magic in both settings, including community spell work and the decoding ancient stories. In all my magic, I seek to mediate the gaps between what was, what is, and what could be through co-created, ecstatic ritual, transformative trance work, and a deep connection to the divine. I am guided by deities ranging from Iberia to Sumeria and use magic and deed to rebuild that ancient, amorphous connection humanity had with ourselves and our world — for in that connection we can all reclaim our birthright.
Ana Maria Bahiana
Originally from Brazil, Ana Maria has been on her spiritual path from an early age when the Goddess Yemaya called to her. Ana Maria has studied Candomble, tarot and Ceremonial Magic before settling on a Feri/Reclaiming Path and studying with Sage Goode and T. Thorn Coyle. She is a McFarland Dianic initiate and has seeded a Reclaiming community in Rio de Janeiro. She is currently studying with T. Thorn Coyle and lives with her cat familiars in Los Angeles.
Rebecca “MoonSong” Fowler (she) has been a Reclaiming witch since 1997, and a facilitator and teacher since 2000. She is a skilled coach and mentor, and considers herself a healer first and foremost, drawing upon her education in story and psychology, and her experience working with people to reveal new perspectives and create new roads forward. Rebecca co-creates her life with two cats, her young adult kiddo, and many other beloved spirits in the occupied territories of the Tongva and Acjachemen peoples in so-called Irvine, CA. Learn more about Rebecca at: https://www.proserpinareturns.com/about-me
Samantha Ravenna Shay is a young artist, witch, and priestess. Dedicated to creating her art from the sacred acknowledgement of its foundation in ritual, she seeks to break down the barriers of artistic discipline to create something new and unprecedented through acts of spiritual devotion. Her work is at it’s best, a collaboration between the body and its senses, performing on the body like a welcomed hallucination. She is the founder of internationally recognised artist collective Source Material, under which she premiered two notable original works: A Thousand Tongues (at the Theatre Olympics/European Capital of Culture in Wroclaw, Poland) and of Light in Reykjavik, Iceland, which garnered international attention, including endorsements from Marina Abramovic who mentored the project, and Björk, who listed Ravenna as an inspirational young artist in The Guardian after attending the premier. Also a sometime filmmaker, she has made music videos and short films with JFDR, Jodie Landau, Johanna Warren, K Á R Y Y N , and Sóley. She holds a BFA in Acting from the California Institute of the Arts, is currently pursuing a MFA in Live Performance at the Iceland Academy of the Arts, and has been a member of the Reclaiming community for 5 years, where she has been a student teacher and priestess in different areas of the west coast. Reclaiming is a deeply sacred community to Ravenna, a place in which she sees leadership modeled with innovation and thoughtfulness, and feels privileged to grow, be of service in community, and aspire among an exceptional community. For more information, visit www.samantha-shay.com.
I’ve known I was a witch since my college days (nearly 30 years ago now), practicing mostly as a solitary until I found my home in Reclaiming. Since 2004 I’ve attended seven Witchcamps (California Witchcamp and Tejas Web in TX) and two Dandelion Gatherings, returning from each camp more in love with this tradition and with a deepening commitment to nurturing community at home. I’m currently serving on the Reclaiming LA Ritual Planning Cell and have helped to craft and priestess many public rituals in the last four years. Dedicated to The Morrigan, my personal path includes devotional practice, divination, journaling, meditation, and restorative yoga. You can often find me at the community garden or curled up with my two cats and a good book, depending on the season.
Kirke has been a practicing witch for nearly a decade. She explored a number of pagan traditions before finding Reclaiming, where she resonated strongly with this ecstatic, eclectic, and activist tradition. After practicing magic for some time both as a solitary witch and as part of a coven, Kirke joined Reclaiming LA’s Ritual Planning Cell. She has been priestessing public and private rituals since. Kirke is particularly interested in trance and aspecting work, as well as in exploring the psychological and practical applications of magic and myth.
Sara’s approach to ritual is informed by a belief that all humans have the Witch Instinct—an openness to mystery, to radical imagination, and to the voice of the Divine—and she strives to priestex in a way that awakens that hidden power in every participant, trusting each person to know how to do the magic that changes all the worlds.
In their personal practice, Sara works intimately with the land they live on: the unceded homeland of the Kizh/Tongva people, commonly known as Long Beach, California. As a descendant of European colonizers and immigrants, her magic involves unpacking the damaging legacies of her own ancestry, and seeking to form a respectful magical relationship with a place that has been stolen from its first inhabitants. As a messy, queer word-witch, they work to re-story the world and to give language to the inherently non-binary and many-stranded magic of this little weirdo planet of ours.
Their favorite magical practices include storytelling, hedge-riding, spell-crafting, circle-casting, and tarot reading. Her poetry and other writing can be found here.
Phoenix LeFae has been intertwined with the Reclaiming community for almost 15 years, taking a more active role, with teaching and ritual planning, in the last three. She is a Northern California native with a deep and intimate connection to the trees, animals, rivers, and Pacific Ocean that cover and surround the land. Phoenix believes that magick and ritual can transform lives and much of her work is connected to Rites of Passages, honoring the transitions in life. After taking a pilgrimage to Glastonbury, Phoenix became immersed in the mysteries of Avalon where she often walks between the worlds.
A lover of the liminal spaces, all that is and isn’t, Phoenix is a child of paradox. A professional Priestess, writer, body worker, and Doula, Phoenix is always immersed in the mystery that is the world around us. You can find Phoenix’s writing in SageWoman and Circle magazines, as well as online at Goddess Oracle, SF Paganism Examiner and her personal blog AMuse of the Goddess.
Urania makes her home north of San Francisco in the rolling hills of San Rafael with her beloved family. She came to Reclaiming in 1991 and began to teach Reclaiming core classes and priestess in 1993. In 1998 she was ordained as an Interfaith Minister. Her practice of Witchcraft is informed by Taoist principles and the ecstatic practices of all faiths. Her daily practices vary, but she is particularly fond of gardening, cooking, Tarot and divination, sex magic, making offerings to the Fey that live in her neighborhood and moon bathing. She considers herself to be one of Hekate’s Daughters and as such, loves crossroads, thresholds and moon rivers. She believes in the power of timing, destiny and free will — paradox is what she uses most often to explore the Mystery. She loves Reclaiming — paradox that it is.
I have been teaching Reclaiming core classes for over 20 years, as well as classes in Aspecting, Anchoring, Spellcrafting, Tarot, and Music-as-a-Magical Tool. I have taught witchcamps in Vermont, Diana’s Grove, and Spiral Heart.
Theater and Music are an important part of my magical practice. I’ve served multiple years as Musical Director for the San Francisco’s big Samhain Spiral Dance ritual, and also served as Artistic Director of Magical Acts Ritual Theatre company. I have sung on several pagan musical recordings, including several Reclaiming ones, and one by Moonrise, the folk trio I co-founded.
I’ve also worked with the BTW, Feri, NROOGD, CAYA, and Nine Sisters traditions. I value interfaith and inter-tradition work.
I serve as priestess in the Temples of Aphrodite and of Dionysos in Oakland, on the ritual planning cell for East Bay Reclaiming.
Gwion has been a practicing witch and ritualist within the Reclaiming Tradition since 2003. He loves being in service with this community of witches and world changers and has taught Reclaiming Core classes, week-long witchcamps and embodied devotional work across the U.S and Canada. As a drummer and musician, Gwion draws inspiration from music and improvisational theatre. He has a willingness to embrace and explore the power in the Shadow. Gwion has studied Tibetan Buddhism with his beloved Ven. Segyu Rinpoche, Druidry and adores myths, especially those from the British Isles. He is often found conversing with Ravens, running through the redwoods, drumming with the Unseen Ones Gwion is dedicated to Ceridwen and the transformation She brings through her cauldron of Initiation. You can follow Gwion at www.tobeawitch.com, at his personal blog “To Be A Witch” found at Witches & Pagans, or at his shared Patheos Pagan column “The Witches Next Door.”
I was baptized by my Great Grandmother at her kitchen sink and raised the daughter of Queer, pacifist, holistic-healing, quantum-physics, Deadhead parents. My roots in ecstatic worship are in the theater, the apostolic church, and the diverse pagan community of the Twin Cities with significant Druid and Lakota influence. I live in San Diego CA and my calling is End-of-Life care, walking the edges with those who are dying. Reading The Fifth Sacred Thing by Starhawk in the 1990s provided me with a vision of building community through collaboration and an introduction to the Reclaiming tradition. Attending Witchcamp in 2015 was a life changing actualization of the vision which has set me on a teaching and community building path.
I am a firm believer in seeking common ground and that obstacles are temporary. Love is the law. I’m willing to step into unfamiliar or uncomfortable roles as a model for others. I am a creature of joy, compassion and love. I nurture those around me, have a good imagination, and look to the animals and Mother Moon for guidance. I speak dog and cat, and enough Spanish to get myself in trouble. I look forward to reaching towards the divine through song, drumming and breaking of bread with those who find themselves circling round with me. Blessed Be!
I have been a witch and ritualist for 25 years, active in Reclaiming for ten years through the California community and the Tejas community. I’m a musician, death worker, gardener and brew witch. Those are ways I heal myself, and may be ways others find support in healing through work they do with me. I’m a change agent called to other ways of knowing – trance facilitation and mentoring, shadow work, hypnotherapy and tarot. In recent years I’ve become a champion for sustainability in my own life and in my communities, and I blog about that at sustainablewitch.com