Tag Archives: Magic

Sacred Space: Finger Bones

My hands ache.

I am acutely aware of the weight and shape of every bone in my hand.

I can feel the tendons stretching and relaxing as my fingertips dance over the keyboard to write these words.  The movements, subtle though there are, carry their own slight discomfort to the pain centers of my brain.

The tenderness is unfamiliar, and irritating, and strangely welcome.

It means that I’ve actually been working.

***

These posts, in my Sacred Space series, are supposed to chronicle my efforts at building a small private temple on my property.

The tree, which I mean to carve, stands untouched.  The ground where the fire pit will eventually go, the fountain and small reflecting pool, the spiral walkways…,

It’s all still a grassy patch of nothing in particular.

The plans are there, but the time, and the will to begin, remain elusive.

***

I took half of the month of May away from my job.

Beltane was celebrated with fire and feast and a flurry of creative exertion, as I broke ground on a new workshop in the backyard.

There was digging, and then backfilling, and leveling.  Lumber and nails were unloaded and then transformed into floor and walls, and eventually many-jointed trusses arched overhead like the bones of some terrible beast.

I took a break from my job to do work, to build a place where I hope to do even more work.

And that probably seems just a little insane, in a world where vacation time is ideally spent in some sort of leisure activity – or even better, inactivity.

But while the job I go to every day puts bread on the table, it lacks true satisfaction.  I spend most of my time creating nothing, adding nothing of substance to the sum of my time on this planet.  I find, instead, that true satisfaction comes about when channeling an idea through the body and forcing it to take shape in the material world.

***

So I haven’t built my temple yet, but my workshop is almost done.

And maybe that’s not so bad, because I think a workshop is a sacred space in its own right.

The stories that my ancestors have passed down, about the gods we worship, tell us that they were not only masters of warfare, and magic, and healing.  The greatest of the gods, the ones who were heroes among their own immortal folk, were the masters of every art and craft.

At the woodworking bench, at the forge, at the loom and the wheel, wielding hammer and saw, and torch and trowel…, through hand and heart the very energy of creation is focused in the places where we make the things that will last beyond our fleeting lives.

We reshape the world in our image.

How better to honor the gods of our fathers?

***

My hands ache – and that is as it should be.

A hammer is scarred by every nail it strikes.

That is the sacrifice we make to change the world.

Even the bones in our hands can be a sacred space!

Lace your fingers together.

Do you remember the rhyme?

“Here is the church…here is the steeple…,”

This is the eleventh post in this wandering series, following the thoughts, planning and eventual construction of a small temple space on my property.  If you wish to follow along, you may see other posts in this series by clicking here.

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Filed under About this Blog, Modern Life, Philosophy, Religion, Sacred Space, Spiritual Journey, The Gods

Love Potion #9

I was strolling through the parking lot on my way home from work, when I noticed the business cards tucked into the drivers side windows of the cars I was passing.

This sort of thing happens at least once every few months in this parking lot.

Advertisements of one sort or another appear, wedged under the windshield wipers or stuck in our car doors, usually advertising drink specials at some local bar or redemption specials at some local church.  I snatch them off my car and toss them into the passenger seat, just more fodder for the recycling bin once I make it home.

This particular card was different from others I had seen.  Advertising neither public house nor house of god, it displayed instead the illustrated face of a sultry gypsy woman with the words, “Love Healer Mxxxxx” emblazoned across the top of the card.

No, it wasn’t really ‘Mxxxxx’.

I’m obfuscating a few of the details because I wouldn’t want anyone to mistake this mention as either advertisement or endorsement.  I assure you, it is neither.

Already shaking my head, I scanned the rest of her card and see exactly what services were being offered…,

Reconciles Love

Love and Relationship Specialist

Reveals Secrets

Locates Soulmate

Okay, not too bad so far, I guess.  I have my doubts on the whole ‘soulmate’ front, but it certainly could have been worse.  I took another moment to flip the card and read the back…,

Love Spells

Psychic Love Spells

Wait, what’s the difference between a love spell and a psychic love spell?

Relationship Spells

Breakup Spells

Oh, well it’s nice to see she has a little something for every occasion.

Return Lover Spells

Forgive Me Spells

Desperation: you’re soaking in it.

****

Yeah, I’m just not buying it.

And yes, I can already hear my more incredulous readers pointing out that, as someone who has himself studied and has even occasionally practiced a bit of magic, I have no place calling someone else a fraud.

And that, my friends, is a reasonable point.

I have made any number of claims within this blog, regarding the things I have seen or experienced, that I could never prove to you, beyond any kind of doubt.

And while I find it highly suspicious that she is charging $45 just to conduct a reading to see if she should charge you even more money to offer you romantic advice (as described on her website).  Charging fees for services rendered is not, in itself, proof of fraudulent behavior.  For all I know ‘Love Healer Mxxxxx’ really does possess the power to “reveal your lovers’ secrets” and “enhance your sex drive.”

She may be the “Master Psychic Spiritualist” she claims to be.

Or she may have come up with her job-description while playing Occult Mad Libs.

I just don’t know.

What I can say it that I have known many people who I believe are genuinely in touch with something outside that which most others are willing to experience.  And I’ve met a fair number of fakes as well.  Telling the difference between the two is not always an easy matter.

Sometimes it’s obvious and sometimes it just comes down to a feeling.

But whatever their powers, real or imagined, here’s one bit of advice I offer free of charge.

Love Spells, Relationship Spells, Return Your Lover Spells…, just ever so much NO!

Romantic Love, the ancient Greeks would tell you, is the child of Beauty and War, and is, by its very nature, already volatile enough without adding a chaotic element like magic into the mix.

These things never go well.

And if you don’t believe me, just look into the various mythologies…,

The arrows of love invariably prick the wrong target, leading us to a hoard of unfortunate physical transformations, wars inspired by romantic jealousy, and an entire flock of god-kings stepping out with a handy river-nymph, carpenters wife, or some poor young woman with a secret swan fetish.

If even the gods can’t handle this stuff, what chance do mere mortals have.

It’s a bad BAD scene and we’d all do well to just stay away from it.

Stay safe out there and good hunting!

Leda and the Swan

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Filed under Magic, Modern Life, Mythology

Summon unto ye the Unholy Spirit of My Little Pony

Summoning My Little Pony

The best thing about the internet is not its ability to connect us over vast distances or the sheer volume of information which it puts at our fingertips.  These things are all very fine and good, it is true, but the very VERY best thing about the internet is its ability to regurgitate silly “news” items again and again, sometimes years after they first surfaced.

As a case in point, I bring you this meme I spotted the other day, warning against the next satanic plot to destroy our innocent youth…,

Pink Ouija Meme

Yep, that’s a pink Ouija board, the likes of which I had never seen before, but which it appears Hasbro started cranking out back in 2010.  How did I miss this?!

And this was apparently a big deal at the time.  With just a little effort I discovered several news articles about Christian groups protesting against Toys R Us for selling these things, and Hasbro for making them.

And all because little girls will be seduced by the pink cardboard and begin to summon malign spirits.

That’s the part that always makes me laugh.

Just how easy do these people think it is to conjure something up from the bowls of hell?!  I mean, if a couple little girls can do it, while fiddling with a bit of cardboard and plastic, an adult ought to be able to step outside and summon all sorts of uglies with no more than a good shout.  The skies above us should be filled with demonic energy like that scene in Ghostbusters after the containment grid is shut down.  And those of us who have actually studied magic should be able to bring the gods themselves thundering down from the heavens in all their wrath and fury.

I ain't afraid of no ghosts!

I’ve watched this movie dozens of times and never noticed that the spirits released over NYC are all pink. Maybe Hasbro is on to something!

But it doesn’t work like that, as even a casual glance at the world around us should make clear.

I believe in an inspirited world, I have been witness to the raw magical power of youth, but I think its a safe bet that no line of demons is queued up and ready to leap into our children through the vehicle of a $12 toy.

And what self respecting hell-wright would be seen in the same room with this thing, anyway.

The cultist spread his hands out over them and cried, “Go now children, take up the bright pink letter-board of damnation, and summon unto ye the Unholy Spirit of My Little Pony.”

Yeah, I don’t think so.

Oh, and parents…, don’t buy your kids a pink Ouija board.  Not because they might use it to summon something nasty, but because they’ll play with it once, and then it’s just going to collect dust in the closet.

Besides, everyone knows that all the most sinister of infernal spirits have been trapped, through fiendish sorcery, inside these unbreakable spheres of darkness.

Magic 8-Ball

From here, they will reveal, at our command, the very secrets of the universe.

Only, not right now…, try again later.

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Filed under Magic, Modern Life, Religion

Sticks and Stones – revisited

They say that the only sure things in this world are death and taxes.

Imagine my surprise, then, when I recently discovered that I could not file my return for last year.

Having gone through the yearly ritual of gathering the sacred paperwork and entering the numbers in their allotted places, I pressed the key that would send my documents winging their electronic way through the aether, when suddenly I was confounded by an error message.  Repeated attempts, garnered the same result, and it quickly became clear that the I would not be filing my taxes this day, because some enterprising citizen had already filed a return in my name.

Oh, happy day!

My regular readers may remember that I’d experienced some Identity Theft last year, when I discovered that someone had taken out a loan in my name.  In the months that have passed since, I’ve done everything that one is advised to do in these situations.  My accounts have been flagged by all the proper credit agencies.  A monthly analysis is performed, looking for any fraudulent activity or accounts.

Until now, it seemed like the business with the loan might turn out to be an isolated incident.

And now I’m filling out forms in the old-fashioned way and sending them off to Ye’ Old Internal Revenue Service, along with photocopies of those precious documents which prove that I am, who I say I am.  All this, in the hope that I’ll see my tax refund…, someday.

Dealing with this (again) has been most taxing (pun, most explicitly intended), and has been the preoccupation of my thoughts, these last few days.  And so, instead of writing a new blog this week, I have decided instead to simply repost the relevant portions of a previous post on this topic.

My apologies.

****

The Changeling

The Changeling

You wake to the crying of the babe.

The fire in the hearth, burning low now, casts familiar shadows about the room as you ease from your bed to check on the child.

A quick peek into the crib and all is well, and all is well.

The restless babe is quiet again, and the room seems safe to your sleep-fogged eyes.

You ease quietly back into bed and are asleep again before head meets pillow.

And all is quiet…,

…until the things in the rafters began to whisper and move.

…until winged shadows flutter from the dark corners like leaves on a breeze.

..until the murmur of coaxing, inhuman voices, drifts up from between the floorboards.

In the dim light of fading embers, long pale fingers reach out,

…and clutch,

…and are gone.

And if you know anything of faerie-lore, you know how this tale ends.

What the parents find in the cradle come morning, while it may look like their infant, is something altogether different.  The human child is gone, and will live the remainder of its days among the hidden folk.  Left in its place is a changeling, one of their own kind, grown old and feeble after a life of centuries beyond count, and magically disguised to resemble the vanished infant.

The legends speak of many different ways in which the duped parents might eventually reveal the truth and rid themselves of the cunning gremlin that had invaded their home.  But the missing child was almost always beyond recovery.

The only sure defense against the faeries, it was said, was to have the newborn baptized before they could come to claim it.  Now, it is important to remember that most of these traditions pre-date the arrival of Christianity, and this particular part of the legend, like most intersections of the newer faith and older custom, is a bit misleading.

It is not the act of baptism itself that protects a child from faerie abduction, although it may seem to.  Rather it is the act of granting the child a name, that does the trick.

Our ancestors understood that the world around them was shaped by language.  A child, unnamed, undefined as it were, did not yet fully occupy a place in our world, and was vulnerable.

True Names

For my more skeptical acquaintances, the belief that to know the ‘true’ name of a thing is to have absolute power over that thing, is pure foolishness and superstition.  And yet here we are, living in a world where that most ancient axiom of magic is proven, again and again, every single day.

A numerologist would tell us that our lives are guided by a collection of numbers.  An economist would say the same thing.  The two might argue about where the numbers come from, but the fundamental truth of the statement is unchanged.

The naming and numbering of things is the very foundation of our relationship to the world around us.  Everything that exists, every object, every idea, has a name of its own.  To know the name is to know the thing, and the better you know a thing, the more power you have over it.  What we think of as science, is simply a codified, ritualized system for the naming of things, and it has been around since our earliest progenitors began stacking one rock atop another.

In the old stories, to know the true name of a living being, no matter how great his power, was to have power over him.  The ancient Hebrews guarded the name of their god, because to speak it was to invoke his power, and to write it down was more dangerous still.  Likewise, the Druids passed their knowledge verbally, from one generation to the next, taking care to never write it down, lest the power to transform reality should fall into hands less responsible and learned, than their own.

The naming of things, the ability to understand and manipulate them as expressions and concepts that exist beyond mere physicality, is the greatest power we have as a species.  As smallest child learns that ancient truth while reading Rumplestilskin, so the most studied theologian must glean the same truth, hidden within his holy scriptures.

Et verbum caro factum est — And the word was made flesh.

We are the words, and the flesh, and the power.

And until we accept that truth, we are vulnerable!

Sticks and stones may break our bones, but names, they can undo us.

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Filed under Magic, Modern Life, Mythology, Religion, Traditions

Stealing Souls

Sunday is my writing day.  If I’ve been having a really good week, and my schedule and my brain have been cooperative, then I spend part of the day putting the final touches on my weekly blog post.  All too often, these days, that time is spent in a mad dash to get my ideas down in a form that is at least partially digestible to my unsuspecting readers.

However, sometimes things do not quite work out, and I find myself trapped in a Monday morning staring contest with that blank page on my screen.

And here we are, waiting to see who will blink first…,

…,

It’s my own fault, of course, that I am in this predicament.

You see, A friend called me on Saturday night, begging me to come out on Sunday morning to take some photos of her for a family project.  She hates having her photo taken and had, as a consequence, put things off until absolutely the last possible moment.

I could have declined, of course, but a half-day photography session actually sounded like a lot of fun, and I honestly believed I would get home in plenty of time to meet my self-imposed Monday morning publishing deadline.

And so, as Sunday dawned, I gathered all my equipment and headed off for a day of “soul stealing”.

Soul Stealing is a private joke of mine, referring to the old superstitions that used to accompany photography.  In the past, certain folks believed that in capturing an image of someone, you were also taking from them a portion of their soul.

I suppose the other reason that I think of it that way, is because, on some level, I’m not all that comfortable taking pictures of people.

I love doing landscape photography, and shooting architecture and even animals, but it’s different with people.  Shooting people ‘feels’ intrusive to me, even when the subject wants to be photographed.  It really does feel as if, on some level, I am taking something away from them.

And when I watch one of the most outgoing and self-assure people I have ever known, transform into someone shy and anxious, when I see an incredible natural radiance suddenly obscured by clouds of loathing and self-doubt, I wonder about the true power of the camera.

I know people who hate being in front of a camera.  I am one myself, which is why I most often plant myself firmly behind the lens rather than before it.

Others are in love with the camera.  They seek out that space in front of the lens, and when there is no one else there to take a picture, they will do it themselves, sometimes at risk of life and limb (because, why wouldn’t you take a selfie while driving, right?!).

And then there is the fact that ours is the most photographed culture in the history of the world.  We are constantly in front of a lens (or ten).  We are filmed and photographed everywhere we go, in every business, on street corners and intersections, and when all else fails, there are all those cameras floating around in orbit.

Is a photo just an image, simply a collection of dots on a page recording the light which bounced off the surface on an object at a particular point in time and space?  Or is there more to it than that?

In some ancient cultures, it was believed that to possess an image of a person or creature, provided a conduit to its power or a measure of control over its being.  When we look at a photo of a departed friend or family member, do we not feel a closeness with them?  Does the cult of celebrity, which as much as any other force, turns the wheels of our economy, not depend upon the power of the photograph?

Is there a real power there that we simply refuse to see?

Or is it just all in our heads?

In any case, it was a pretty good Sunday.

We got a late start, the light was intermittent at best, my friends dog was far more interested in running around than posing for the camera, and we were racing a cold front, but we got a few workable shots.

 

Stolen Souls

Not my best work, to be sure.  But then, I’m pretty critical of myself behind the camera as well.

Obviously, my writing got put off until Monday morning.

Which brings us back to the staring contest with the blank page.

I wonder what I’ll write about.

Maybe stealing souls.

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Filed under About this Blog, Culture, Modern Life, Photography

A resurrection done right?

Oh my friends, John Constantine is back from the dead!

Constantine is Back

You may remember that it has been almost twenty months since they put him in the ground.  By my own count it has been one-year, seven-months, and seven-days, since I penned my own small tribute to the Hellblazer.  And suddenly here he is again, big as life on my TV screen, the dirt of the grave still clinging to the soles of his shoes…,

“Nay!” boom the voices of the cynics in the crowd, “It is well known that comic book characters cannot ever truly die.  Did not John’s adventures continue in the pages of ‘Constantine’ after the run of ‘Hellblazer’ had been brought to an end?”

I’ll grant you that folks in the hero-books never die.  However, John never really spent much time walking those circles, and characters in the more adult Vertigo imprint do not seem quite so robust in their immortality, as are the SuperFriends.

As for the aforementioned book, titled ‘Constantine’, well you can borrow a man’s name and his clothes, but without the body you’ve got nothing to hang them on.  Which is just my fancy way of saying that the disneyfied guy in that book is NOT John f@*king Constantine, so don’t even get me started!

A Banishing Spell

“Fine then, leaving aside the question of IF it counts as a resurrection,” comes the counterpoint, “it’s not really much of one, is it?  Over a year and a half go by before he crawls up out of his literary grave, and here you are crowing like it was the second coming!”

Oh sure, Odin only hung on the tree for nine days, and Jesus did his bit over a long weekend, but these are deities we’re talking about and shrugging off death is right there in the job description.

The character of John Constantine is a foul-mouthed, chain smoking, deviant, with highly questionable moral underpinnings, who traffics regularly with unclean spirits and the worst dregs of humanity, and has somehow made the leap from a little known comic book, into a prime-time network television series.  That alone might be miracle enough, but if the first couple episodes are any indication, he’s managed to retain most of his edge through the unlikely transition.

And as an added bonus, he’s not being played by Keanu Reeves!

“And that’s the problem,” cry the ever helpful doubters, “it’s network television, so they’ll screw it up.  He can’t possibly be the same bastard he was in the comics.  Have you noticed how most of his smoking is done off-camera, so as to be politically-correct?  You can’t really believe it’s the same Constantine you knew from ‘Hellblazer’ and not some sanitized pretender?!”

And maybe they’re right.  Maybe I’m hoping for too much.

It’s too early to tell, just yet.

Personally, I’m one to keep a real sharp eye on anyone or anything that comes back from the dead.  No one leaves the lands of the dead unchanged – fictional or otherwise – and such changes are not always for the better.  So, I’ll be watching, to see if he really is who he says he is, or if ‘something else’ is using his body to take a stroll.

Back From The Dead

I’ve missed my monthly dose of the Hellblazer.

I don’t think I’m the only one.

The writing, the casting, the look of the show, they all feel as if they were lifted right out of an old issue and projected onto the screen.  Even John’s little speech at the end of the first episode was pulled almost word for word from one of my favorite issues.  It is the same speech I quoted at the end of my little eulogy last year.

And so, as is always the case where John Constantine is concerned, there is a cautious species of hope arriving from the most unlikely and unlooked for of places.  And anyway, I really should have known better than to believe that the swindling bastard would stay in the grave one second longer than he had to.

The old place still smells the same, that’s the weirdest part.  Beneath the new carpets and the fancy wallpaper, the gloss paint and velvet drapes, the lingering taint of blood and sweat, piss and shit.  The tang of human fear.  Takes me right back, it does.  I never expected to come back.  Not after last time.  I thought I was done with this place.  Thought it was done with me…, But here I am again, back for one last ride on the merry-go-round.

Let Me Ask You

John Constantine: Hellblazer 1988 – 2013 / 2014 – ?

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Filed under Art, Comics, Culture, Heroes, Modern Life, Television

Looking for Magic?

It seemed as if the rain would never end.  The day had dawned bright with only a slight drizzle, which grew more torrential with each sodden hour.  It pounded down upon the roof, and every time it seemed as if it might have had enough, it pounded some more.

Another awesome Saturday, right?

In those days, I worked something close to “bankers hours” and could count on the luxury of weekends off.  And yet, here I was, stuck inside, prisoner to a thunderous downpour that showed no signs of abating.  Tired of reading, nothing on television and no where else to be,  I opened the sliding glass door and stepped onto the 3’x5’ patch of concrete that passed for a balcony in my old apartment complex.

The phrase “wall of water” has never been more apt.  The rain was rolling off the roof above me in a solid sheet, through which nothing of the outside world could be seen.  The visible universe had been reduced to a moving wall of impenetrable grey accompanied by a droning thunder over which no other noise could be heard.

Except…,

Almost lost in the constant roar, I could hear the voices of children.

The sound seemed to be coming from below me and to my right.  Ah, the neighbors kids, two little african-american girls, maybe six and eight.  I’d seen them, now and then, playing around the complex, and here they were, like me, stuck inside on their day off from school.

Were they singing?

“Rain-rain-go-away, come-again-some-other-day,” (softly).

Oh, right.  I couldn’t blame them.

Too bad though, this storm showed no signs of letting up anytime soon.

“Rain-rain-go-away, come-again-some-other-day”.
“Rain-rain-go-away, come-again-some-other-day.”
“Rain-rain-go-away, come-again-some-other-day,” (progressively louder).

I remember smiling to myself.  These kids were determined!

“Rain-rain-go-away, come-again-some-other-day,” (and louder still).

And this is when my humor began to transform into amazement.  These kids were not letting up, their chant (and that is surely what it had become), what growing louder and more insistent.  I tried to lean over the balcony, to get a look at them, but could not without plunging my head into the deluge.  Even as I leaned over the balcony railing in the attempt, I could feel the wood vibrating with the power of the falling rain.

And…, I could feel something else there, as well.

“Rain-rain-go-away, come-again-some-other-day,” (almost shouting now).

I could feel their chant in the wood under my fingers, and then in the air around me, pricking at my skin and running up my spine.  It felt as if lightning were about to strike, as if it were striking already, in slow motion.

There was an energy flowing out of those little girls.  It was coming off of them in waves, filling in all the empty spaces around us and then pushing out…,

“Rain-Rain-Go-Away, Come-Again-Some-Other-Day!”
(demanding – commanding).

“RAIN-RAIN-GO-AWAY!  COME-AGAIN-SOME-OTHER-DAY!”

And then it was over: the chant and the storm.  The echo of their last word still ringing in the sudden silence, but the rain was gone.  The downpour had been stilled completely, as if someone had thrown a switch.

Children's Game or Magic Spell?

Magic.

It’s not a thing we always like to talk about, (or maybe some people talk about it too much).  We either shy away from it, when in mixed company, or we try to explain it unnecessarily.  We spell it differently because Crowley said we should, because adding a ‘k’ at the end of the word will make it respectable somehow.  ‘Magick’ the reasoning goes, should not be confused with the lowly art of pulling rabbits and doves out of a hat.

“Bollocks,” I say.

Magic (and you can keep your lousy ‘k’) is as much about changing our perceptions of reality as it is effecting any real change in the world.  I would go so far as to say that the one is impossible without the other; that we must be able to suspend our disbelief before we may hope to impose our will upon the world around us.

The true magician must be a showman at heart.

Hey, look!  It's Dr. Strange the Sorcerer Supreme and one of the hoary hosts of Hoggoth.

Hey, look! It’s Dr. Strange the Sorcerer Supreme and one of the hoary hosts of Hoggoth.

Still others try to explain magic away, to make it acceptable to outsiders.

“Magic is like prayer,” they will say, to ease the apprehension of the monotheist.

No.  Sorry.  Wrong.

Prayer is like prayer.

When we pray, monotheist or polytheist, we call out to a deity for aid or blessing or simply to honor their mighty names.  If said deity should answer our appeal, the action, the power, is in those called upon.

Magic is not prayer, and we will gain the trust of no one by lying to them.

Of course, the lines are not always so clearly drawn.  Just as we may use the tools of the stage magician, we may call upon the names of deity in our workings.  We may do so to set the right tone, or even to add a little ‘oomph’ and gravitas to the proceedings.

And there are those who take this too far, who think of the gods as little more than power batteries to be tapped at need.  Well, there are people who treat their friends and associates in the same manner, and while they may indeed get ahead in this world, that doesn’t mean I have to respect them.

No, magic is not prayer, and neither is it the manifestation of psychic ability.  Although, again, the latter may be quite useful in the application of the former.  Such ability, when and where it may exist, is another valuable tool in the magicians belt.

But where are these people, who work their will on the world around us?

Does science not disprove them or engineering replace them?

“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.”

—Arthur C. Clark

Maybe.

Or perhaps magic is so hard to prove because it is so easy to disbelieve.

We adults must make rules and formulae for everything under the Sun (and the Sun, and the stars and galaxies beside).  The modern day magician is as wrapped up in this complicated reality we have built for ourselves as any engineer or programmer.  What, we ask, are the proper correspondences, materials, elements, positions, foci, tools and time of day?

Conjuring

But the most important element of all has always been belief.

Without belief we fail in our every endeavor, magical or mundane.

Belief is the hardest thing to manufacture in a world that seems set against us.  It is the hardest thing to maintain.  Everything else that we do and need and want, falls short of this one truth.  And it’s so very simple.

“Magic is the Science and Art of causing Change to occur in conformity with Will.”

—Aleister Crowley

But only if we believe.

And to do that, we must learn to be like children.

I’ve seen children, who knew nothing of the rules (meteorological or magical) tell the rain to go away.  I’ve seen the rain, the world, obey them.

If you are looking for the magic in the world, just look in the mirror…,

…and believe.

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Filed under Culture, Magic, Modern Life, Philosophy, Prayer, Religion, Spiritual Journey