New Civilization News: Magick for Dummies    
 Magick for Dummies40 comments
picture 12 Jun 2004 @ 18:17, by Flemming Funch

There are several kinds of magic. There's of course what a stage magician does to fool the audience into partially believing he's doing something impossible, and entertaining them in the process. Then there's the magic of wonderous moments, where the universe moves and reveals its mysteries in surprising and wonderful ways. Communing with nature, experiencing an artistic performance, or being part of a synchronistic event where things just come together in the exactly right, but completely unexpected way.

And then there's the deliberate practice of Magick, usually spelled with a 'k' at the end. It is something that is widely misunderstood, and very often shrouded in or lost in a lot of mysterious mumbo-jumbo symbolism that might or might not make sense to anybody. In the past that has been in part because masters of magick wanted to confuse and mislead the competition, or at least make sure that only the most dedicated and clever students would do the necessary work to figure out what it is. As its practice requires significant dedication and focused work. Many principles of the universe are involved, but mostly it adds up to something that is largely a discipline of the mind. One could say that it is:
To train the mind to move with the maximum speed and energy, with the utmost possible accuracy in the chosen direction, and with the minimum of disturbance or friction.
That is from Aleister Crowley. He managed, more than just about anyone, to explain magick in clear language and reveal most of its secrets. Strangely, he also became a very misunderstood and hated man. Maybe not so strange - a lot of people felt threatened by what he had to teach and what he stood for, and he didn't hesitate in being as provocative as he could when he had a chance.

Many of the things to understand are in rather paradoxical forms. Thus the above aim goes hand in hand with the aim:
To stop the mind altogether.
Which is what meditation or yoga or many other practices are about. It is quite logical, really. Most people's minds are full of a lot of uncontrolled, undisciplined junk, running on automatic. To focus in any effective manner on anything, one needs to be able to stop the flurry of random data. The better, the more completely one can do that, the more well poised one is for subsequent acts of great clarity and focus.

One of Crowley's basic tenets, which, again, is largely misunderstood and misquoted is:
Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.
Love is the law, love under will.
Unscrupulous people usually quote just the first line, and misinterpret it to give a license to do whatever the hell one wants, no matter it does to anybody else. And, well, there are unfortunately too many people who live by such a principle. That's not what's meant here. The Will referred to is closer to what some people would call "Divine Will". But not in the fundamentalist understanding where, again, it is an excuse for doing things there is no excuse for. Rather, the most integruous and constructive thing is the thing to do. The most honest and authentic thing to do. The most loving. Not a human whim, but a connection with the universal mind. In a state of freedom. Hard to explain in words, as one has misunderstood it the moment one just takes the words literally. Anyway, here are some more excerpted basics on magick from Crowley, The Beast, 666 himself:
Definition: Magick is the Science and Art of causing Change to occur in conformity with Will.

Postulate: ANY required Change may be effected by application of the proper kind and degree of Force in the proper manner through the proper medium to the proper object.


Every intentional act is a Magical Act.

Every successful act has conformed to the postulate.

Every failure proves that one or more requirements of the postulate have not been fulfilled.

The first requisite for causing any change is thorough qualitative and quantitative understanding of the condition.

The second requisite of causing any change is the practical ability to set in right motion the necessary forces.

"Every man and every woman is a star." That is to say, every human being is intrinsically an independent individual with his own proper character and proper motion.

Every man and every woman has a course, depending partly on the self, and partly on the environment which is natural and necessary for each. Anyone who is forced from his own course, either through not understanding himself, or through external opposition, comes into conflict with the order of the Universe, and suffers accordingly.

A man whose conscious will is at odds with his True Will is wasting his strength. He cannot hope to influence his environment efficiently.

A man who is doing his True Will has the inertia of the Universe to assist him.

Nature is a continuous phenomenon, though we do not know in all cases how things are connected.

Science enables us to take advantage of the continuity of Nature by the empirical application of certain principles whose interplay involves different orders of idea, connected with each other in a way beyond our present comprehension.

Man is ignorant of the nature of his own being and powers. Even his idea of his limitations is based on experience of the past. and every step in his progress extends his empire. There is, therefore, no reason to assign theoretical limits§ to what he may be, or to what he may do.

Man's sense of himself as separate from, and opposed to, the Universe is a bar to his conducting its currents. It insulates him.

Man can only attract and employ the forces for which he is really fitted.

Now, that is pretty down-to-earth, really. To make anything happen that you'd like to happen, you need to get certain forces into motion. And if what you're trying to make happen isn't in harmony with who you are and where you are, or with the universe for that matter, it won't work very well.

If you want pure water to drink, you'll dig a well in a place where there is underground water; you'll prevent it from leaking away; and you'll arrange to take advantage of water's accordance with the laws of hydrostatics to fill it. That's an example of magick. Decide to do something, and do what's necessary to make it happen. You could also go buy a bottle of water in 7-11 if there's one close by. But you can't do that if there's no 7-11, just as you can't dig a well if there's no underground water. Duh. There's a right place and time for many things, and in other settings they might not be right. Magick is when you're able to be in tune with that rightness, so you can make the right thing happen with the right tools at the right time.

That doesn't have to have anything with voodoo to do. If mostly doesn't. If you want to bake a cake, you get the ingredients and put them together the right way. You don't just sit down and do affirmations and prayers about cakes. You don't try to bake it on the freeway either. You do it in a kitchen.

If your calling is to be a carpenter, it might not work to try to be rock star. But if you really got a rock star in you, that's probably what you should do, even if everybody thinks you're a carpenter. And if you do it, you should really do it, not just half-heartedly.

Of course you'll notice that most people in the world are spending most of their time doing things that aren't really right for them, and which aren't working well, and they don't use the right tools. And it isn't what they really want.

So, obviously, there's a great need for ways to help people get clear on what they actually want and what is right for them, and able to stay on the same course for long enough to actually get there.

And there's a need for getting effective tools into people's hands and enabling them to use them. Nowadays, of course, information technology is part of the tools available. If you want to reach many people and make big things happen, you'd probably be shooting yourself in the foot if you don't use the Internet to the hilt.

Big things can be made to happen with small means, if it all gets lined up right, and the right tools are used, by the right people. That's magick.

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12 Jun 2004 @ 19:30 by bushman : :}
Ya, magik is pretty fun. :}  

13 Jun 2004 @ 05:41 by jstarrs : Duh, only thing is...
...Crowley's last words were:
"I am perplexed."

13 Jun 2004 @ 17:20 by ov : St Augustine
"Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.
Love is the law, love under will."

This is similiar to a position held by St. Augustine more than 1500 years before Crowley, namely that "Anything is permissable provided one has love for God." I can't remember but I suspect that this may have been during his Manichaeism period (gnosticism and mind-matter duality) prior to his conversion thanks to St. Ambrose to Neoplatonism, and typical of neo movements is a reversal which would be of the Platonic, a reversal which makes it close to the Aristotlean and the foundation of Western thought. So I sympathize with the perplexion since the seeds were planted so very long ago and gone through so many neo-neo-neo flip-flops that it is damn near impossible not to be confused.  

13 Jun 2004 @ 20:45 by celestial @ : Internet tools
Excellent article on using the internet to the hilt to get information in the hands or I should say the minds of the people!  

15 Jun 2004 @ 16:14 by maxtobin : Magick
Interesting stuff for the mind to embrace. Crowley was an enigma, used by creator as he sought to use creators power for self agrandisment IMHO. The visions were quite complete and yet the understanding seemed to lack this. Power over or power to do, what a to do!! It is all about intent (my knowings at this time) and the focused intent is really an attitude or predisposition in terms of response. The mind is a tool for spirit expressing but 'thinks' it is the controller, and therein 'lies' the problems. Mind is a wonderful tool and its power is in reflecting upon and reaching understanding regards relationship (now there is a little understood vessel) which is the 'ALL THAT IS". IMHO, magick is the divine process of coming into line with the ONE HEART through the activity of ones heart. That is, 'Do what thou wilt', (it is a free will realm after all, that is why there are so many schools of thought on how to control others!!) 'Love is the law, love under will'
Ask always what is for the highest and best good in any given relationship moment and one finds alignment with source.
Great to visit Crowley again after so many years, Thanks Flemming as always. Poor fellow was all tied up in control and power issues and never completely embraced the gifts of vision he recieved. And just as then, we now 'see' all the answers here in our community and yet we largely remain trapped in the duality of the drama. Freedom to love, to be love is to be in loving relationship, this in my view is the way through the drama to true freedom (and that is quite a drama, Aye!!)  

15 Jun 2004 @ 16:32 by ming : Me or All That Is
It is unfortunate that sometimes prophets who bring out a lot of truth useful to others somehow end up getting it a little wrong themselves. I suppose it is in part that if you play with a lot of power, you only need to be a slight bit off, to suddenly be a whole lot off.

And despite that a fellow like Crowley got a lot of things very right, and seemed to understand how things worked, he might still be tempted to try to take some power for himself he shouldn't have. The great zen point of what is really True Will. Which is really the flow of All That Is. And if you're completely in sync with the universe, it is the same as your will. But it is so hard to know the fine lines between whether that's the case or it isn't.  

16 Jun 2004 @ 07:08 by magical_melody : Interesting post here Ming!
Yes Max, Crowley was lost in the realm of mind, and power/control issues galore. And...Heart is the key to Mastery!

I liked this comment Flemming: Big things can be made to happen with small means, if it all gets lined up right, and the right tools are used, by the right people. That's magick. ********YES it is!  

12 Mar 2009 @ 10:24 by Terence @ : Spelling with a K
Crowley added the K as a bid to add to his own immortal delusions. It looks silly, sillier still in "magickal," and downright ridiculous in "magickian." It doesn't make sense based on the rules of the English language.

Therefore, the K obviously stands for "kallisti."  

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