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Book Review: Otherworld By Chris Allaun

Chris Allaun is an ordained Pagan Minister with nearly 30 years of experience in many eclectic spiritual paths including Traditional Witchcraft and Native American Spirituality. He is the author of five books on Pagan Spirituality, including Otherworld. Mr. Allaun is also a professional massage therapist and reiki master. He offers a variety of healing services and workshops on healing, paganism and occult subjects.

Particularly in the case of Otherworld, Mr. Allaun’s writing is focused through the lens of a healer. He makes many statements that all magical practitioners have a responsibility to heal. He neglects to recognize that there are other archetypes and spiritual endeavors beyond the role of the Healer (such as Warrior, Mentor, Analyst) which serve the community and the sacred earth in ways that are just as valuable as that of the Healer.

Mr. Allaun pulls from his eclectic background to describe the different beings that can be encountered in a magical/mystical and separate world he calls the Otherworld. He weaves in elements of Wicca, Traditional Witchcraft, Nordic Mythology and Native American Spirituality. He frequently points to his research, generously quoting from other source material.

Mr. Allaun’s goal is to encourage his audience to form relationships with these various beings of the Otherworld. The beings which he specifically mentions are animal spirits, elves and fairies, and dragons. It is his belief that these beings will then teach the audience to heal themselves, others, and the land itself.

This work did make me consider how human beings fit into the natural world and

encouraged me to analyze how I am making a positive contribution. Mr. Allaun spoke very eloquently about the sacredness of the life each individual leads. I also was able to think of new ways to use his ecstatic dance and I am excited to experiment with this technique to explore difficult aspects of my personal past. As a person who devotes a great deal of my personal spiritual practice to the Otherworldly beings of elves, fairies and dragons, Mr. Allaun challenged me to define my personal reasons for soliciting these powerful entities. I also appreciated his vehemence that this Otherworld he describes is for anyone, no matter where they might be on their magical journey. He reassures his audience that if they use his trance techniques to visit this Otherworld that they need not fear getting lost along the way.

It cannot be ignored that the editing of this book is of poor quality. There are many grammatical errors throughout the work which distract from the content. I must also express my uncertainty regarding the intended audience of this work. His prodigious use of very different spiritual paths, mythologies, and spiritual terminology made the work confusing for me; and I would consider myself a very advanced magical practitioner with a wide background of training. However, he kept the exercises so basic, that while some of them inspired me, I felt them too generic for my skill set. While the chapters were interesting, he does not spend a great deal of time exploring any one concept or member of the Otherworld; which resigns me to conclude that this work would best be suited to a more beginner audience. It should be noted again that Mr. Allaun is expressly devoted to the Healer’s path, if that type of work is not a part of the spiritual path of a particular reader, this work is not likely to appeal to them. What will appeal to more advanced practitioners is that Chris Allaun writes in an easy, friendly style which is a pleasure to read and makes it easy to pluck out many gems of inspiration that may take your Otherworld journeys in new directions.

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