Longtime practitioner says people must discard many misconceptions
KINGWOOD — Anna Llewellyn Barstow said the study of witchcraft and witchcraft persecution is part of the study of women’s history, especially the history of social and sexual violence against women.
Barstow is a retired professor of history at State University of New York College at Old Westbury, and the author of “Witchcraze: A New History of the European Witch Hunts,” and “Joan of Arc: Heretic, Mystic, Shaman.”
Both of these books delve into the history of women of the past.
But witchcraft itself exists outside history books. The practice is alive and well today.
Who are the women who practice witchcraft today?
Jenny Fidler says for her, witchcraft is a way of life.
She said she started as a Wiccan but moved away because she didn’t like the structure and format.
Fidler has a Ph.D. in metaphysics and an undergraduate degree in paranormal psychology.
Among her other achievements, she is a certified shamanic life coach, certified Reiki grand master and certified crystal healing practitioner.
“I have been practicing witchcraft for 21 years,” she said. “It piqued my interest when I was a teen.
“I’ve always been drawn to the paranormal,” Fidler said. “I’ve always seen and heard things.”
She said her family was poor, so she didn’t have the means to research her psychic gifts until her teenage years. It was then that she found out there were others who shared those same gifts.
Fidler said when she was a child she knew if a friend or family member was about to die.
“When I would tell my mom, she didn’t want to listen. When it happened, she would try to hide it from me, but I knew,” she said.
“I can see physical manifestations and feel things,” Fidler said. “I’ve had a few experiences in cemeteries and brought things back home with me.”
She said one experience saved her life.
“I was driving and a lady in white — a beautiful ball of white — stepped in front of my car,” Fidler said. “I stopped. Two minutes later on down the road there was a huge traffic accident. If I hadn’t stopped I would have been involved in it and probably been killed.”
She said there was another experience she remembers that involved healing.
“When I was young, my brother had a severe asthma attack,” Fidler said. “An older gentleman came to the house and brought a stick. He cut it off a little longer than my brother was tall and said some words over it. He told my mom to put the stick in the attic. He said when my brother grew taller than the stick the asthma would be gone. My brother never had another attack.”
She said she does readings for people using tarot, oracle, crystals, the pendulum and palmistry.
“I see people charging for things, charging $60 for a reading. I don’t charge for my readings. I do my readings and classes for free,” Fidler said. “I’m going to start a witchy year and a day class on Nov. 1. Anyone who is interested can add me on Facebook.”
She said when she first started practicing her craft, she had nothing.
“It shouldn’t break you up. Go to nature and find a wand. Chose a stick that calls to you,” she said. “If you make your items yourself, they are that much more powerful for you.”
Fidler said witchcraft is not evil.
“I try to teach and tell people witchcraft is not evil or satanic. It has nothing to do with Satan,” Fidler said. “It’s a nature religion — the love of nature, and being yourself. I try to teach the old way so it’s not lost.”
She practices her craft every day.
“I live and breathe my craft,” Fidler said. “It’s the one thing that has always been there for me. The most power you have is in your mind and hand.”
For more information about Fidler’s readings or classes go to https://www.face book.com/JennyFidler4