We are very excited for our latest addition to the blog, Bookstores We Love, a feature dedicated to our independent bookstores! Our next store featured is Namaste Bookshop!
Namaste Bookshop is such a wondrous place filled with spiritual books, crystals, candles, oils, music, statues, jewelry, incense and so much more. The most extraordinary gift of this shop though, are the people that work here.
The moment you walk into the shop from 14th Street, which is one of the most bustling streets in Manhattan, you can feel the difference immediately. The tranquility and soothing music envelopes you and puts you at ease, as you are embraced by the attentive staff, who are more than eager to help and assist you in what ever you need. This staff is comprised of passionate teachers of Reiki, meditation, crystal energy, Tarot, Numerology, Theology, Esoteric studies and again, much more. There is love and sincere consideration for the clientele of Namaste.
These amazing services and contributions are not only offered in the shop on 14th Street but also at the Namaste Bookshop Healing Center, which is just around the corner on 5th Avenue. There are book signings, lectures, meditation circles, Reiki treatments and classes, the Spiritual Book club, crystal classes and psychic readers giving their services every day of the week.
Namaste Bookshop is not just a spiritual book store but a family of passionate teachers, inspirational instructors, located in an oasis of peace and enchantment in the incredible city of New York.
We are very excited for our latest addition to the blog, Bookstores We Love, a feature dedicated to our independent bookstores! Our next store featured is Phoenix Books!
With four locations in Vermont, two of which were added within the past year, Phoenix Books defies the myth that indie bookstores are dead. The business originally opened in Essex, in 2007.
In 2012, co-owners Mike DeSanto and Renee Reiner opened a second location in Burlington, using the community-supported enterprise model (similar to a farm CSA, supporters pre-buy books or invest in the business to help fund startup costs.)
In September 2015, following a recruitment effort by Green Mountain Power in collaboration with the City of Rutland, Downtown Rutland Partnership, and local residents and businesses, Phoenix Books opened a bookstore in Rutland. The location is co-owned and managed by Rutland local Tricia Huebner.
Just this May, DeSanto and Reiner added a fourth store when they purchased Phoenix Books Misty Valley (a.k.a. Misty Valley Books) in Chester, Vermont. The four locations each engage with the community in a variety of ways, for example:
A busy schedule of author events, featuring both local authors (e.g. herbalist Rosemary Gladstar) and touring authors (e.g. our upcoming event with RWW’s Laurie McCammon, author of Enough!)
Storytimes, including a Whole Book Approach Storytime (using a method of guiding children through reading a book that has proven successful for a wide range of ages, reading levels, and learning styles) in Essex and collaborations with City Market, our local co-op, in Burlington
We are very excited to launch our newest addition to the blog, Bookstores We Love, a feature dedicated to our independent bookstores! Our first store featured is Isis Books, Gifts and Healing Oasis.
Isis Books, Gifts and Healing Oasis
Isis Books, Gifts and Healing Oasis has been serving our wonderful, unique and always interesting clientele for over 36 years in Denver, Colorado. We started out very small in 1980, renting one side of a small duplex and now, since 2007, we own our building of 6,000 square feet. Our building was originally a mortuary built in the 1920’s. As we were looking for a building to purchase, we stumbled upon our location and really liked the fact that its rectangular, free standing shape was much like so many traditional Egyptian temples, up to and including pillars across the front facade. When we went inside and saw the lotus flower stained glass skylights, we knew we had found the right space for our amazing store.
We are sometimes asked if our building is haunted. Of course, a mortuary is simply a temporary resting place for someone’s physical remains, not a place they get attached to, so we don’t have more than the normal amount of activity that any older building tends to experience – but we do have Ernie, the caretaker who worked in the building for over 60 years. He’s out of body now, but he keeps an eye on things for us.
Since our inception, we have offered a multitude of workshops and classes, psychic readings and alternative healers. Information, education and empowerment are essential components of what we at Isis Books seek to encourage and foster in our diverse spiritual community. Enriching our spiritual communities by the sharing of wisdom and providing tools for spiritual development is a big part of our mission. We believe that all spiritual paths lead to the Source. We honor and respect all life-affirming, positive paths. We sum up this belief in our tag line ‘Tools for Your Soul’s Journey’. And we celebrate this conviction by showcasing our diversity of book titles which represent so many spiritual paths along with our sacred statuary, music, herbs, essential oils, stones and more.
Our customers love this diversity of cultures, world views and products, spending hours at our store exploring and discovering new things. We feel very lucky to be located in the Denver metro area with its accepting, educated and always curious population. Our angel customers share with our Wiccan customers; our Shamanic folks share knowledge and stories with our Asatru folks. The majority of our customers also believe that everyone has the right to their own form of spiritual expression and enjoy learning about different pathways to the Divine.
One of the things that we have loved over the years has been watching our customers’ families grow up. People who have shopped with us since 1980 often come in with their children. Those children are now grown and bring in their kids and grandkids, so we have had the delight of being a part of 3 or 4 generations of spiritual families during the time that we have been serving our community.
Many people have remarked that Isis Books feels like an eye of calm in the middle of the city. In addition to coming by to shop, we also have quite a few people who drop by just to chill after a stressful day. They tell us that they love the sense of peace and serenity they feel as soon as they enter the store. As one of our favorite Weiser authors, Christopher Penczak, describes us, “Part library, part apothecary and part temple, Isis has all the tools you might need, whatever path or tradition you follow.”
In a time when our world is in such a state of constant tumultuous change, words can take on alternate meanings and that has certainly been the case with the name of our store. In November, 2015 our large street sign with our name Isis in all capital letters was severely damaged by rocks and bricks by a person who apparently flunked their junior high mythology class and mistook us as a shopfront for terrorists. We posted briefly about the damage on our Facebook page and the ensuing show of support and love was overwhelming. Over the next couple of weeks, our Facebook page had over 600,000 views and tens of thousands of shares. We did TV interviews on all our local news stations and did radio interviews for stations across the country as well as for Australian, British, Russian and French news sites. In the interviews we had the opportunity to explain who Isis really is, what our store is about and give a ‘shout out’ to our amazing, supportive community. So as a result of a sad incident, we connected in an even stronger way with our wonderful customers and got the word out about our store in ways we would never have been able to afford through advertising.