For the last half year I've been memorizing a ritual. What that process has looked like is I would spend a week memorizing the lines for one particular segment of the ritual and making sure I really had those lines memorized. Then I would move on to the next segment. In the midst of this memorization I also ended up modifying the ritual and adding some additional lines of my own, so those also needed to be memorized and integrated into the working. I needed to get a feel for how what I added fit into what already existed.
One of the things I've been thinking about lately is lifestyle magic vs living magic…
In the last couple of months I've been memorizing some chants for some work I'm doing with the Elemental Archangels. The purpose of memorizing the chants is to embed and embody specific associations with the archangels and the correspondences that they mediate. By memorizing the chants, I'm not just learning the words, but also developing an understanding of what those words represent and creating and deepening my connection with the archangels.
I find that memorization is a skill that isn't always appreciated in magical work. The idea of memorizing correspondences or chants can seem like a lot of tedious work, from a surface perspective. The value of memorizing chants and correspondences is that its actually a process that allows you to intimately connect and get to know what you are working with.
One of the books I'm currently reading, Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear offers an intriguing idea about the nature of creative genius. The author shares that the ideas a person gets and acts on are the result of the genius, but the genius is a spirit working through you.
Kind of like A Genius Locii (a spirit of place), but instead its a spirit of creativity.
I think its an intriguing way to look at one's own sense of genius, because instead of claiming something as you're own, you acknowledge its a gift that's been given to you, an offering that you've been allowed to express (should you take it up). It's an opportunity to be humble and recognize how your creativity is inspired.
Lately I've been replaying the God of War series. It's one of those videogame series that I play as a way to process emotions and solve problems. Losing myself in the game and in the character of Kratos and his own issues with rage allows me to come to a meditative space. In that space, each push of the button is mirrored in the meditation and what is presented is a space where the problem can be worked through, while the game is being played.
If there's one perception about pop culture magic that stands out to me as being inaccurate, its the idea that people practicing pop culture magic are winging it. It's as if people think that pop culture magic is an undisciplined approach to magic that's really about wish fulfillment as opposed to a genuine magical practice.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
When I started practicing pop culture magic, I knew that in order to make it work, I needed to draw on my previous experiences with magic. In fact, I wouldn't recommend pop culture magic to someone who didn't have at least a couple of years experience with magic under their belt, because you need that experience to make sure that what you're doing actually works and isn't wish fulfillment on your part.
At one time, whenever I would do a practical magic working, I had to break out the bling...
You know the fancy tools, the smelly incense and candles, and all the other stuff we're told we need to have in order to do practical magic (and other types of magic for that matter).
And don't get me wrong, those fancy tools, incenses, and candles could be a lot of fun to use. They can really set the tone of a ritual, create an atmosphere and experience that whisks you from mundane reality and opens you to the sacred mysteries of the universe.
But as I continued doing practical magic, I began to wonder if there was an easier, better way of doing practical magic, without all the bling and other stuff.
And as it turned out, there was.
If there's one problem that stands out to me about how Magic is taught or explained, its that people rarely take the time to really explore how magic works.
Yet's what really worse is the lack of curiosity in exploring how magic works. Instead we're told, "Don't worry about how or why magic works. Just do it."
What frustrating advice!
How can you just do magic, if you don't understand what you're doing or why you're doing it? What's being taught is basically push button magic. You push the button and you hope something happens.
That's not an effective way to practice magic and it doesn't empower anyone when they are told to just do something. Additionally, it makes it very hard to personalize magic or experiment with it.
One of the frequent issues I notice magicians experience is they don't always get the results they want, or they get the results, but then the results slip through their fingers. So they went to all that effort to get that result, and yet it hasn't worked out. It's enough to make a person really doubt whether or not magic works.
Yet, so many people do practice magic and do get results, so surely it works. The question is, "Why aren't you getting the results you're shooting for?" And in this article I'm going to share 4 reasons you may not be getting the results you want as well as what actions you can take to remedy that issue.
The other day, a student of mine asked me, "Taylor, what's the difference was between magic and the law of attraction? Why should I practice magic if I can just use the law of attraction in my life?"
It was a good and fair question to ask. Why should someone practice magic, which seems like a lot of work, when they can just adhere to the law of attraction and use that for their life.
Did you miss an episode of the magical experiments podcast in July and August? Listen to them.
Magical Experiments podcast: Performance Art and Magic with Hannah Haddix
Magical Experiments podcast: Victor Anderson: an American Shaman with Cornelia Benavidez
Magical Experiments podcast: The Masks of Lucifer with Asenath Mason and Bill Duvendack
Magical Experiments podcast: The pop culture magic of Star Wars with Leni Hester
Magical Experiments podcast:Practical Sales Magic with Dubious Monk
Magical Experiments podcast: The pop culture magic of Zelda with Cloud Jetters
Book Review: The Hidden Adept and the Inward Vision by R. J. Stewart
This is the fascinating story of A. R. Heaver, a little known practitioner of magic and his work with Stillness as well as the western mystery traditions. It's more of a biography and history book than anything else, but there are some interesting esoteric gems in the book and if you have an interest in the Glastonbury well, then this book will have some pertinent history that's worth learning. I do wish the author the author had included some of his own interactions with A. R. Heaver in the book. He only gives a passing mention to them. That said, I've found reading and meditating on some of the material of the book to be helpful with my own meditations on stillness.
The other day I was having a conversation with one of my friends. She shared she was feeling anxious about the upcoming weekend where she would be doing a lot of vending and she pessimistically said she didn't think she'd sell a lot of product.
Now I'm no stranger to such pessimism, having some of it myself, so after she vented for a bit, I asked her if she was open to some feedback.
Recently I was having a conversation with a friend about results and consequences. Often times in practical magic workings we focus on the results that we want to achieve, but what isn't always considered are the consequences that come with the results. Yet consequences are a natural reality of a result. The problem that happens is that the result is treated as a point of closure. You've created and executed the magical working and then the result has occurred and that's the end of the story. But is it?
In my own magical practice I'm a real stickler for details. The reason is because I like to figure out what is working and how it's working (or conversely what isn't working). Not everyone feels this way about magic. Sometimes I'll hear people say that it doesn't matter how magic works, as long as it produces a result. I always find this response (and variants of it) to be fascinating and perplexing. "Why wouldn't you want to know how something works?" is one of the questions that I ask, along with another one, "What do you do if your magical working doesn't work or produce the results you were going after?"
I never really get a satisfactory answer to those questions.
I find that a lot of people think of magic as something you actively are doing, but sometimes the way magic works has more to do with being in tune with the flow of possibilities into reality and allowing the right possibilities to come through. What does that really mean?
I look at it in this way. Yes, sometimes the magical work involves taking action, but sometimes it involves being in a situation and recognizing how to make that situation work for you, even when it seems to be stacked against you.
Whether you're building a public spiritual community or a private one, there's a couple of factors you want to consider that will help you build your spiritual community and make sure its a healthy one. In this video I share what those factors are and how to strategically approach them so you can build your spiritual community.
The other day I got into a conversation with an acquaintance who said they wanted to be successful with magic. I asked them to define success and they told me that to them success was using intention to create manifestation. It sounded like a lot of new age fluff and the problem is that it basically is new age fluff. Words like intention and manifestation have become ambiguous words that say very little while sounding very buzzy. In the defense of my acquaintance, this was a person just starting out on their magical journey. When I explained that they needed to be more specific in defining success with magic, they had trouble because they didn't know what it looked like.
The other day I was asked why so many rules of magic are made up, especially if they aren't needed. And the answer to that question really comes down to this: What is the underlying motivation for making up any rule?
The answer is power, or control, or some variant.
I've been working with the element of stillness for 2 and a half years, via daily meditations and internal work. The stillness work is part of the elemental balancing ritual that I've used to create a dedicated system of internal work, which I've been implementing in my life since 2004! Today I thought I would share why I've worked with Stillness for so long and share a stillness working with you. Check out the video:
I've lately been on a bit of a simplicity kick with my magical practice, and part of that has involved going back to basics. It may seem odd that a magician with 20 plus years experience would go back to basics. After all, don't I already know this material? And the answer is yes, and yet also no. You see, I think one of the traps I see magicians fall into is one where you take for granted what you know. And actually this happens outside of magic. If you meet an "expert" in a field they know what they know and they sometimes take it for granted. So I want to share with you 5 reasons for going back to the basics and how doing that can help you become a better magician.