Grandmother of Time: A Woman's Book of Celebrations, Spells, and Sacred Objects for Every Month of the Year


In The Grandmother of Time, Zsuzsanna Budapest teaches both beginners and experieced practioners how to intergrate wiccan spirtuality into their everyday lives. Here are new approaches to today's rituals, from birthdays and dedications of newborn babies to purifying our homes and protecting us in travel.

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In The Grandmother of Time, Zsuzsanna Budapest teaches both beginners and experieced practioners how to intergrate wiccan spirtuality into their everyday lives. Here are new approaches to today's rituals, from birthdays and dedications of newborn babies to purifying our homes and protecting us in travel.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062501097
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 10/28/1989
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 956,510
  • Product dimensions: 7.37 (w) x 9.25 (h) x 0.72 (d)

Meet the Author

I was born in Budapest on January 30, 1940, on a terrible north-wind-whipped morning. My mother, Masika, then only twenty-five years old, had great trouble delivering me, so I was born by cesarean section. Mother was a famous sculptor who also happened to be a psychic, medium, and palm reader. She came from a long line of witches in the herbalist tradition. Her sister continued the line, becoming a pharmacist.

The Hungarian revolution in 1956 changed my life. I escaped to the West and went to school in Innsbruck and Vienna, and later at the University of Chicago, studying languages. I married and had two sons.

I studied with Second City, then with Viola Spolin, the mother of improvisation, and later at American Academy of Dramatic Art in New York.

In 1970 I discovered the Women's Liberation Movement, which led to another huge change in my life: I became a conscious woman. Feminism gave me so much. I decided to contribute seriously by connecting witchcraft with feminism, thereby sparking the women's spirituality movement. I wrote the first feminist witchcraft book, The Feminist Book of Lights and Shadows, which later became The Holy Book of Women's Mysteries; I followed this with two other books, Grandmother of Time and Grandmother Moon.

When I am not working on a new book I like to work with women at weekend workshops, retreats, and witch camps, where we practice the remembered arts of witchcraft in safe circles of women. We use tools of dance and chanting, candles, and incense to lift our spirits. We take part in guided meditations and pay visits to our ancestors and the Wild Woman. We practice using aromas and Bach remedies for inner balance.

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Read an Excerpt


An Invitation from
Anna Perenna
The Grandmother of Time

Anna Perenna, The Eternal Grandmother of Time, has graciously consented to guide us through these difficult and puzzling days. Listening to the prayers of her witches, gathering her information on the wings of the sandalwood incense they burn, she has decided to reveal herself to us in her many forms as the leader of the unfolding journey -- Anna Perenna, the Goddess of Time. The oldest of all deities, before the Bible was ever written, she had already been worshipped for thousands of years as the grandmother of the gods! Then why isn't this important deity as well known as goddesses like Aphrodite, or Gaia, or Demeter? Who knows? It could be a convenient cultural blind spot on our part -- a tendency to ignore the reality of time as applied to our own existence. After all, who would enjoy contemplating aging, dying, or changing into other forms when this beloved form of ours is the only one we know?

Anna's name comes from the Sumerian prototype of the many forms of the great goddess who is called Anna, Anat, Ann, Ana, or Hanahh -- names that mean Lady of Heaven. Time is measured by the rotation of the heavens, the original clock. In Syria she was known as Anatha; in Canaan, as Anat; elsewhere, as Ana or Anah. Anna was the name of the mother of the Virgin Mary. As Asherah, she was the consort of Jahveh at Elephantine. As Anti, she ruled the pre-Celtic tribes. In Phrygia she was Nana, the mother of the savior god. Her names testify to her international, ancient ancestry.

The Romans devoted many processions,popular theater skits, and feast days to Anna Perenna, their two-headed Goddess of Time. One of her heads, named Prosrsa, looked forward as in prophecy. Her other head, Postverta, looked backward from her heavenly gate. Because she was the beginning and the end, the alpha and omega, as the wise Carmenta she also invented all the rest of the letters in the alphabet.

From culture to culture, her divine credits continue on. Ovid said Anna was the same as the moon goddess, heavenly Lucina. To the Celts, Anna was the first aspect of their trinity, Ana, of the beginning. To the Irish, Ana meant mother, also treasure, prosperity, and wealth. In her grandmother aspect, she became associated with goddess as destroyer (when time runs out). She had a cauldron of rebirth, just like Morrigan of the Irish. Anna was Christianized and became the mother of Mary. For a while she was even said to have been born "immaculately," which makes sense, for why would Time be tainted with sex? But later the Christians, obsessed with the matter, decided that Mary's immaculate conception was all they could stomach, and they declared that Anna's had not occurred. No matter, the Goddess of Time survived until today, and she is having a comeback!

My favorite stories about Anna Perenna are those told about the times she intermingled with human folk. I saw these stories acted out in street theater festivals around the Piac in Kunszentmiklos. It so happened that sometimes she took a fancy to some young, good-looking man and liked to approach him as an old hag. "Come and give a little kiss on my mouth, laddie!" she would beg, often in vain. Young men don't like to kiss old wrinkled ladies on the mouth. But then she had a trick. She would plead, "If you kiss me, laddie, I shall turn into the most beautiful young bride you have ever seen! " This got results, sometimes, if the young man in question had the generosity to kiss her and risk what would happen!

Zawoom! Anna, the Goddess of Time, who is a great shaman and can shift her appearance by will, turned into a young bride more beautiful and enchanting than the young man could have imagined! Great then was the joy of the lucky young man! But Anna was not yet through with her time games! (She likes games.) Next she challenged her new lover: "I can only be pretty half of the time," she would say. "Would you like me to be beautiful and young during the daytime when your friends can meet us or in the nighttime when we make love?" If the young man knew what was good for him, he would say, "It is all the same to me dearest!" and Anna Perenna would smile and say, "Then I'll stay young and beautiful all the time!" But if he hesitated and started wavering about nighttime versus daytime, she would disappear forever.

Anna -- the oldest of gods, the Grandmother of Time, the young thing of the springtime, shape shifter, the old hag of the wintertime -- is our captain on this annual magical journey around the brilliant sun. Come aboard! Be part of it. Let Anna write her messages to you and weave her spells for our benefit. Listen with your inner ear; listen to your irrational mind. Can anybody truly understand Time?

Grandmother of Time. Copyright © by Zsuzsanna E. Budapest. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 5, 2007

    A reviewer

    My women's group has used this book for quite some time,rituals,information, wisdom,insight~ it's all in this book. Amazing.

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