Hello, Neighbors! Watch this space for monthly news and notes about tasty gems, handy services, unusual offerings, art, and changes on Grand Ave., west of 580. — LZ.
A 13-year-old girl stared at a photo of hippies in Berkeley and told her mom her dream was to open a place “. . . like a bookstore, only not quite.” Fast-forward a couple of decades and see The Sacred Well (536 Grand Ave.) that the girl, Rabbit, opened with astrologer, artist and mystic Barry Perlman (astrobarry), across from Lake Merritt in Oakland. Maybe you just re-read the Harry Potter series, or Halloween has rekindled your interest in spells and witches. Iris Red Raven, the manager, assures us, “Magic happens every day – just look for it.”
As you enter the store, enjoy the sweet aroma from six years of mists and incense. Rabbit has transformed the fitting room of the former clothing store into a community alter space where you may enjoy a respite from the urban scene. Meditate, pray or dip into your own personal well of spirituality.
Looking for an unusual gift? Beautiful polished crystals and gemstones fill half of this cozy store. Some stones are set in rings, earrings, pendants and bracelets. Others are loose, with their symbolism identified (e.g., for peace, wealth, or dispelling negative energy). You may feel inspired to design a necklace by selecting a stone to place in a small silver wire basket and adding a chain. Select a small velvet, leather or cloth pouch to carry selected stones. Or choose crystals to be exquisite decorative ornaments.
Struggling to meet a challenge? Friendly, easy-going staff will help you select organic essential oils, elixirs, or scented sprays. Consider bath salts to restore bliss, love, peace, prosperity or protection. Sprinkle magical powders in your shoes to bring you closer to your goals with every step. Or choose healing teas, spell candles, personalized mojo bags, or a Tarot reading.
Yes, Mom, this place sells books too – mostly by local authors and poets – on topics ranging from herbalism, to Sun and Moon sign books, to world myth and meditation. In addition, like a bookstore (sort of), you could buy the 2014 Magical Almanac or the Witches Spell-A-Day Almanac. However, this is no Barnes & Noble. The Sacred Well offers classes like how to use herbs magically and for personal healing, as well as events like full moon lake walks, altar building, and volunteering at the city’s Lake Merritt clean-ups.
The Sacred Well strives to be a reasonably priced supplier of goods for the spiritual person, serving the diverse spiritual practices of individuals in the community. Most items feature local makers using organic or sustainably sourced materials.
October 19 will mark the Sacred Well’s sixth anniversary. Will there be an anniversary celebration? Time may not permit as Rabbit is also getting married in October! Uncork some “happily ever after” essential oil.
(510) 444-WELL 
536 Grand Ave., Oakland
Hours: Tues – Fri, Sun 12 PM – 8 PM
Sat 11 AM – 8 PM