I’m currently re-reading The Way We Think, which explores conceptual blending and how we are able visualize and do other amazing things with our mind that are much harder to replicate with computers. The reason is that a while a computer can do rational analysis, what it can’t easily do is imagine. The power of the imagination allows us to experience the world from a multitude of perspectives and find novel solutions to problems that fall outside of rational analysis.
I’ve always treated imagination as a sacred aspect of myself. While there’s a tendency in Western culture to treat imagination as something restricted to children or being childlike, I think we lose out when we don’t use our imagination. The imagination is the gateway to the possible of the universe, the means by which we can entertain what might be instead of just sticking with what is.
In my work with space/time magic, I’ve utilized imagination as a tool for the forecasting of timeline possibilities, wherein you essentially access a possible future and live it through your meditation. It’s a useful way of getting a sense of probable outcomes without committing to that future and it’s enabled me to also project potential consequences for achieving the result of realizing that future.
Another way I’ve used imagination with space/time magic is to create a mansion of identity/memory, where I’ve created multiple versions of myself, each version focused on a specific topic of interest I want to learn about. I can interact with each version and get information from them on a subject, but they are also actively acquiring additional experiences and information and then processing it so that I can draw upon what’s been learned quickly and efficiently. Imagination allows them to model what they learn and work with it to come up with solutions to problems I’m trying to solve. By applying my imagination to the problem and allowing the appropriate versions of myself to have at the problem (whatever it is) I can come up with a solution that resolves the problem.
Imagination has played a role in every magical technique I’ve developed, because I ask myself what if, and then use my imagination to help me map out the reality of that what if wonderment and turn it into something that can be applied practically to the world. You can do the same thing: Take an existing problem and ask yourself what if…what if I could solve this with whatever I wanted to solve it with. Then let your imagination entertain that possibility and chart a path forward for you to discover the answer.
We use imagination to meditate, to do pathworkings, to connect with the sacred and merge it with the profane. Every act of magic is an act of imagination that allows us to turn the possible into reality. When you recognize what a role imagination can play in your magical workings, it helps you see how it opens us to the hidden world. It’s imagination that allows us to connect with the spirit world and the spirits, because imagination is a state of being that touches the essence of all beings that can imagine and wonder. We channel that imagination, through stories, but we can also channel it through our capacity to imagine possibilities and turn them into reality.
I’d invite you to consider imagination as another part of your magical tool set. What can a sense of wonder and imagination teach you about magic, life, and whatever else you apply it to? You may be pleasantly surprised by what you discover.