Title: The Book of Sacred Baths: 52 Bathing Rituals to Revitalize Your Spirit
Author: Dr. Paulette Kouffman Sherman
Genre: Spiritual Non-Fiction
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive any sort of payment for this review. This is my opinion of this author’s work and not a paid advertisement for this book.
The Book of Sacred Baths by Dr. Paulette Kouffman Sherman is an excellent book to educate, instruct, and explain the entire process of indulging in a ritual bath.
Any time that spiritual, magical, or philosophical practices are talked about, it’s easier than anything to say, “Well, that’s not how I would do it.” and this book is no exception. What the author does here isn’t exactly the way that I personally go about taking a ritual bath — and I’ve developed my own practice for this sort of thing over the last 20-something years — but that’s not what’s important. Dr. Sherman EXPLAINS the process to her readers, dipping into the history and culture of this practice over centuries and around the world. She also gives excellent instruction on why these processes are involved: meditation, preparing the space, setting up your bath area with ritual intention, and even journaling about your experiences afterward.
That’s my favorite part. I’m a strong advocate for journaling and the fact that she mentions and encourages that made me giddy with delight in talking about this book with others.
I love that she talks about balancing the within and the without and bringing the elements into balance for the act of ritual bathing. I’ve seen a lot of well-intentioned teachers and authors skip this step.
This book goes beyond simply being about recipes, which you could easily find for yourself by doing an internet search for “spiritual bath salts” or “ritual baths for luck/love/health/etc.”
Dr. Sherman takes her readers beyond the simple and guides them practically through all areas of this exciting and rejuvenating event.
As for things I don’t agree with, I think that really comes down to a difference of practice and practicality. Even on the stuff I do differently, it’s more about what I’m looking for or my own experiences and beliefs that set me apart from what she says here. Personally, I don’t go in for a lot of angel stuff. I don’t relate to the divine as “Spirit”, I don’t think about the “Law of Attraction” in those terms, and I don’t operate on “raising vibrations”, but that’s just me and I was able to put my own thoughts and philosophies aside and get a lot out of this work, so even if you don’t share the author’s viewpoints on all these kinds of things, there is still a lot of good information here and it’s well worth reading and learning from, if you can do the same. Her insights are sound so you can either follow her instructions as they are, or use them to tweak your own practices. Either way, you will get a lot from this book.
I also am not a strict advocate of using essential oils, but that has more to do with different beliefs about the vibrational attributions to them than much else. I prefer to use high-quality pure oils* and those are what I recommend in place of the essential oils she prescribes. In my experience, they are safer, cheaper, and because they are made with essential oils, they achieve the same goals via magical intention, herbology, or aromatherapy.
My choice for oils is Sun’s Eye Pure Oils.
I highly recommend this book and am looking into others that she has written for more information and things to enrich my practices. I hope you will too.
*Pure Oils are a blend of essential oil with a base oil or carrier oil. Because using an undiluted essential oil is often unsafe for those who aren’t well-practiced in handling essential oils, this makes them safer to apply directly to your skin or for other uses and also lowers their cost significantly without lessening their magical capabilities. I think the term ‘essential oil’ conjures a false concept of what these oils are and what they do. Because of this, I don’t generally recommend them for regular use and only for specific instances where such is needed and a pure oil won’t suffice.