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"Magick is not something you do, magick is something you are," writes Donald Michael Kraig in his book Modern Magick. Being a magician is more than doing a few spells or participating in a ritual, just as being a Christian is more than going to church on Sunday. Magic isn't something you put on and take off when the mood strikes. It is a world view, a lifestyle, a way of thinking and feeling and being — a way that contradicts much of what we in the West have been taught to believe.
To be a magician is to live in constant awareness of your connection with everything else in the Universe, knowing that you are in control of your own destiny. It involves all your senses, both the ordinary and the "extraordinary." A magician's world is a place of power and humility.
Magic is probably infinite in scope — there is always more to learn, so you will never know it all. And, just as it requires years of concentrated effort to become a marathon runner, master carpenter, or concert pianist, it takes time to become an accomplished magician. Don't let that intimidate you! The magic is already within you, and you can begin doing elementary magic spells and rituals right away. As author Marian Green so aptly puts it in her book, Elements of Ritual Magic, "real magic is not a spectator sport."
For centuries, magical wisdom and occult knowledge were kept hidden, due to fear of persecution. (Occult, by the way, simply means hidden.) Magicians passed down secret teachings by word of mouth, through rituals, art, and coded texts. Numerology, which links each letter of the alphabet with a number, is one method used to convey occult truths to initiates while concealing them from the masses. The tarot is another. We have only now begun to rediscover the magic of our ancestors.
At the same time, modern magic makers are putting their own spin on this ancient wisdom and adapting it to our twenty-first century world. One example of this is the pairing of complementary therapies in medicine. When herbal medicine, which draws upon the vital energies of plants for healing, is combined with modern medical technology and skills, this age- old magical art can produce results that surpass those known to early wise men and women.
Most of the magicians I know do magical work every day. Some magic is quite basic and practical, such as manifesting a convenient parking space at a mall on the Friday after Thanksgiving. Some of it is performed as part of an ongoing program of self-development, like daily meditation or exercise, rather than to produce a specific outcome. Other magical work seeks to achieve a goal, such as promoting healing, increasing abundance, or attracting love and self-love. Once you become accustomed to using this magical "force," you will naturally call upon your magical abilities to assist you in nearly every aspect of life.
An artist sees everything in terms of light and shadow, color and composition; a magician perceives everything in terms of energy. When you do magic, you tap the energies within yourself, in the earth, and in the worlds beyond. As you work with magic, you will begin to see things differently. Your relationships with other people may change, as may your relationship with yourself. You will experience the patterns and dynamics that underlie the superficial as you come to know that the physical world is only one part of the All.
You will become aware of how your thoughts, words, emotions, and actions affect conditions in your life and you'll begin living more consciously. In short, magic will transform your life.
HOW MAGIC WORKS
When you work magic, you tap into the natural forces that exist all around us, on earth and in the heavens, and use them for a specific purpose. By manipulating energy, a magician creates the circumstances she or he desires. According to Aleister Crowley, one of the best-known magicians of the modern era, "every intentional act is a magickal act." More specifically, explains Donald Michael Kraig in Modern Magick, "magick is the science and art of causing change ... to occur in conformity with will, using means not currently understood by traditional Western science."
Magic operates on the premise that everything is energy, and that everything in the Universe is connected to everything else. We exist in an energy matrix, which is like a giant web that entwines our Earth, our solar system, our galaxy, and beyond. When something happens in one part of the web, it sends ripples throughout the entire web — just as fluctuations in the New York Stock Exchange impact economics in Japan. This enables magicians to perform magic in their immediate environment and produce effects on the other side of the world.
The Universe contains numerous realms of existence, or levels of being, that interface with the visible world where we carry out our daily lives. We see only the tip of the iceberg, so to speak. By using intuition, imagination, and other mental powers that ordinarily lie dormant, we can access these unseen realms for magical purposes. We can also communicate with the nonphysical beings who inhabit these levels of reality — fairies, angels, elementals, ancestors, and others — and gain their assistance in our magical work.
TYPES OF MAGIC
Magic comes in many flavors. Some practices are complex, others are quite simple — there's something for everyone. Druid Magic, for instance, is closely linked with the natural world and the unseen parallel realms that interact with our own. Ritual Magic utilizes the Cabala and other teachings derived from ancient Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cultures to gain access to the higher realms; as the name suggests, this tradition emphasizes ritual and ceremony. Sex Magic channels erotic energy to produce specific effects. Shamanism involves interacting with nonphysical entities, such as ancestors, spirit animals, elemental forces, and deities, and moving between the various levels of reality. Wicca harnesses female and male powers, cosmic and earthly energies, to create what is desired.
These are only a few types of magic — there are many, many others across many cultures, each with its own unique focus, perceptions, rites, and origins. No one form of magic is "better" than another, although you will undoubtedly find some to be more appropriate for you than others. Just remember to be respectful when performing magic. There are forms of magic that come from closed culture, meaning appropriating that magic may offend some people.
The magic I do is primarily based in Wiccan and neo-Druid traditions, because of my Celtic heritage, but I also blend feng shui, Eastern yoga techniques, and various other schools of thought into my practice. Although magic involves certain laws, it does not subscribe to any particular dogma — you can be a Christian, a Jew, a Buddhist, a Muslim, or without religious affiliation at all and still tread a magical path. An open mind is all you need to proceed.
Although I don't pretend to know about all the different types of magic, those with which I am familiar generally accept a few, fundamental concepts. Some of these are:
There are many levels of reality and many planes of existence in addition to the apparent, physical one in which we conduct our mundane affairs.
You constantly create circumstances with your thoughts, feelings, and actions.
Your mind and intent are what empower your magical work, though special tools and rituals can enhance it.
Magic is based in natural laws and works through the proper utilization of these laws.
Beyond these basic tenets, various magical traditions share lots of other ideas, even though their outer trappings may be different. For instance, many hold that a part of the Self (soul, spirit, higher self) lives on after the death of the physical body and may reincarnate again and again. Many believe in a Higher Power and a Cosmic Order. For the most part, magicians honor all of creation and strive to live in harmony with the other beings on this planet, as well as with those who abide in the numerous unseen realms of existence. For more information about magical paths and traditions, read Bill Whitcomb's encyclopedic book, The Magician's Companion.
THE ETHICS OF MAGIC
Many people fear magic and hold plenty of misconceptions about it and its practitioners. That's not surprising, given the enormous "misinformation" campaign waged by religious, scientific, and political forces against magic for the past couple of millennia. Those practicing witchcraft, sorcery, divination, and other forms of magic have been punished with torture and death in many parts of the world. Even today, magicians tend to keep their beliefs and activities secret to avoid reprisal.
For the record, many or most magicians don't conjure evil, enslave unwilling individuals, or try to foist their beliefs on others. Magic is not dangerous if performed correctly. In fact, magicians don't look different from other people. They aren't immune to life's problems. They have families and jobs and friends and, at least outwardly, seem pretty much the same as everyone else — the person who cuts your hair or repairs your car may be a magician.
Most experienced magicians don't perform dark magic because they understand the ramifications of such acts. However, there are some cultures in which dark magic is normal and common. An important occult truth, honored by many magicians, is that whatever you do comes back to you. Like a boomerang, the energy you put out in thought, word, or deed — good as well as bad — will return to you in kind. We see this law in operation in our everyday lives as well as in our magical lives. If you drive recklessly on the highway, for example, you may inspire road rage in other drivers. If, on the other hand, you smile at the people you interact with and treat them courteously, chances are they'll respond in a friendly manner. Of course, the repercussions of your actions aren't always this straightforward or immediate, but the law of cause and effect is immutable, and those of us who practice magic know that we cause the effects we experience.
This is not to say that magicians never misuse knowledge or behave irresponsibly. Many of us have. Magical power is a heady thing and, at least in the beginning, it's tempting to wield it selfishly or haphazardly. Some magicians say that novices can't really do much harm because they haven't developed the "magical muscles" to accomplish their objectives, and that once you reach a position of true power, you know enough not to abuse it.
To an extent, I agree. But I've seen inexperienced magicians get themselves into trouble by casting spells irresponsibly and calling up entities they couldn't handle. This can be very painful and disruptive to everyone — especially the spellworker. Love spells are where many people first get off track. They attempt to draw a particular person's love to them and end up binding themselves to the object of their affection. You should never manipulate another person. Instead, put out a "call" to the Universe that you are open to receiving a relationship that's right for you, and let Divine Will send you an appropriate partner.
The guiding principle behind Wicca is do no harm. If you follow only this rule, you will be moving in the right direction. When you realize that everything in the Universe is connected, you know that to hurt someone else is to hurt yourself. In a sense, that's what the Golden Rule is about.
To be on the safe side, it's a good idea to begin or end your magic spells with a statement such as, "Let this be done for the highest good, harming none." That way, you get your own ego out of the way and invite Divine Will to manifest your magic in the proper manner.
Magic isn't a toy. It is real and powerful and it works. Use it wisely, with love and respect. And remember the old saying, "Be careful what you ask for."CHAPTER 2
MIND OVER MATTER
Magic is "all in your mind." And it requires the use of all of your mind — all the different hemispheres, lobes, and nerves, the conscious and the unconscious, perhaps even those areas the purpose of which science hasn't discovered yet. When you do magic, you bring all your mental powers — your intuition, your imagination, and your concentration — to bear on a specific objective. The more adept you are at using these abilities, the stronger your magic will be.
Intent is the most important part of doing magic. Tools, words, movements, and clothing may help you to focus your mind, but they aren't the source of the magical force — you are. You can burn a green candle to attract prosperity, for instance, but unless this act is accompanied by your intention and fueled by your energy and enthusiasm, it won't succeed. "Magic cannot be successfully practiced without passion," Nancy B. Watson notes in her book, Practical Solitary Magic. The scene in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone in which the wand chooses the magician makes delightful reading, but it's not true. A magic wand is empowered by the magician's will — the only "life" it possesses otherwise is what's inherent in the natural materials (wood, metal, gemstones) from which it is made. (See Chapter 4 for more about magical tools.)
Magic is the art of consciously creating circumstances. "With our thoughts, we make the world," the Buddha taught. Dion Fortune, one of the instrumental figures in modern-day magic, said much the same thing when she wrote in Sane Occultism, "Events shape and take form on the Inner Plane long before they appear as actual happenings on the plane of manifestation in matter."
Before something can assume form in the physical world, it must first exist in the mind. Every physical creation, every building, book, film, painting, automobile, and software program started out as a vision in the mind of its creator. This is the essence of magic. When you perform magic, you first create a mental picture of an objective, and then you imbue it with energy. Your thoughts are the tools you use to shape your life. You are the architect of your destiny, designing reality according to your own plan.
The etheric plane is the subtle energy realm in which everything exists before it congeals into a physical form. Magicians project ideas, emotions, images, and energetic patterns into this parallel realm in order to generate effects in the physical world. I explain this further in my book, 10-Minute Crystal Ball. The writings of Rudolf Steiner, as well as other mystics and occultists, provide detailed information about this and other realms of existence.
Magic, if done properly, always works. But this doesn't instantly happen with the tap of a wand or the twitch of a nose — that's another misconception arising from fairy tales and Hollywood depictions of magic. The physical world moves more slowly than the etheric plane does, so some details may have to be worked out or conditions put into place before the outcome you desire occurs. In some cases, it might be a few days, weeks, or even longer after you perform a magic spell or ritual before you see results.
Nor does magic generally happen in extraordinary ways. Leprechauns don't suddenly appear and hand over pots of gold. Prince Charming probably won't ride up on a white horse and carry you away to his enchanted castle. For the most part, magic operates through normal channels, without a lot of fanfare. Here's a story to illustrate what I mean.
When I applied for a mortgage to buy my house, I didn't show enough income to qualify for a bank loan. I decided to do a magic spell in which I affirmed that I had enough money to purchase my home. (I'll explain more about affirmations shortly.) A few days later, I was visiting a friend when a real estate agent she knew stopped by unexpectedly. When I explained my situation, the realtor put me in touch with a real estate broker who enabled me to get a loan. I didn't win the lottery or find buried treasure in my backyard, yet my magic produced exactly the outcome I'd asked for.
Unless you know what you really want, you probably won't get it. In magic, a vague or muddled idea produces vague or muddled results. If you are "of two minds" about something, your divergent attitudes will neutralize and sabotage your efforts. Here's a good example.
I once did a love spell for a woman who'd been single for a long time and wanted to meet a romantic partner. Months went by, but no new man entered her life. I'd done the spell correctly, so what was the problem? As it turned out, the woman planned to move to Italy. Her desire to move away and her desire to find a partner were in conflict. Some months later, she sold her house and relocated to Italy, where she promptly reaped the benefits of my spell!
Before you begin a spell, take the time to determine exactly what it is you want to accomplish. Be specific, but leave Divine Will enough leeway to produce results that are right for you. You may not know what's "right" or you might not be aware of all the possibilities that exist (or will soon exist).(Continues…)
Excerpted from "10-Minute Magic Spells"
Copyright © 2019 Skye Alexander.
Excerpted by permission of The Quarto Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Table of Contents
1 Magic Demystified 12
2 Mind Over Matter 26
3 Heaven and Earth 42
4 Tools of the Trade 52
5 Love Spells 76
6 Prosperity Spells 108
7 Spells for Protection, Health, and Well-Being 138
8 Spells to Bring Good Luck and Happiness 172
About the Author 205