Though sceptical about many ideas and beliefs, the evidence of my experience has persuaded me that there are some human faculties that are best described as magical. Obviously an online blog does not give sufficient space to argue such an unlikely idea, so all I can give is a summary of some of the salient points. Maybe in later blogs and elsewhere, I can expand on them.
With magic, as with many controversial concepts, our first problem is with semantics and definitions. Do we share any common understanding of the terms we use? Credible and applicable definitions have included:
1) Technology that is misunderstood by the ignorant. For example a television would have seemed magical not so long ago.
2) The art of causing changes in consciousness.
It is this second definition that interests me. And now for the let down: the best magic is pure imagination. So real magicians may be less like Harry Potter and more like J.K.Rowling. They would also include scientists like Einstein and Tesla, architects and visionaries. In fact anyone who has had a dream that has become a reality. On this score, self proclaimed magicians like Aleister Crowley score poorly. As his magickal diaries demonstrate, most of his magick failed. But he was influential, he put a devastating boot into Victorian hypocrisy, opened many cans of worms and was a visionary. So he cannot be entirely discounted as a fraud. He also was one of the modern pioneers of pyschedlia and altered states of consciousness, in this area at least, his credentials are impeccable.
I will now change track and describe my unusual experiences. As a teenager I experienced, without hallucinogenics, “out of body experiences”, but know these to be hallucinations, like dreams. The evidence proves that nothing (no spirit, astral body, etheric body etc) actually leaves the body. I remain open minded to the concept of ones personal microcosm reflecting the objective macrocosm; maybe nothing needs to leave the body and we contain everything within (like shards of a hologram). It is also possible that not all aspects of consciousness have a definable location. This experience may have been triggered by trauma and a need to escape ones violated body. But it opened the doors to other stranger experiences that are less easy to explain.
I have always been a little psychic. Or if you prefer, and perhaps more accurately, empathic. I tend to know, without using caller id who is ringing. I often anticipate what song will come up next on the radio or random play. With these little party tricks I used to enjoy freaking out my sister. Most people since have been less impressed, but their theories as to how it is done are less likely than our first definition of magic.
I also have a vivid awareness of what Walt Whitman described as the Body Electric. I have used this in self healing and can change the current in those around me as others have testified. It can be done remotely, but when combined with making love (tantra) it can be epic.
The most easy to prove magic is via our pack instinct. Have you ever known someone was watching you, then turned to make immediate eye contact? I guess we all have, it is not so rare. But this connection can be taken much further. If you empathetically enter someone’s space, adopt their step and posture and then introduce a random element, say scratch your nose, they will too. And the truly magical aspect of this, is they don’t need to see you. You can do it behind their back, it will still work. If one uses this technology on the dance floor and enter the space of a “slave to the rhythm” they can be moved at will. A friend and I used to play what we described as pinball with dancers. Sitting at the bar, mentally entering their “feel”, we had great fun. But it was, I regret, highly unethical. A charismatic singer, like say David Bowie, has this power in buckets.
It is, I would suggest, this issue of empathy that makes magic almost impossible to prove in a strictly scientific environment. Although science is, at least in theory, a methodology to objectively test the real, it is also a reaction against subjective and superstitious world views. But magic is powered by empathy, so to test it under scientific restrictions and to prevent empathy or suggestion obscuring the results, is akin to testing a semiconductor without electricity. Under such conditions even a microprocessor’s miraculous properties would appear to be unlikely.
In describing these faculties I have broken the rule of silence. There are many good reasons to keep this knowledge secret. Mostly it is to protect ones integrity as a credible human. I have now publicly labeled myself as a crank. And you are right to be dubious of my claims. Most of the magical tradition is full of deceit. From Hermes Trimegestrous through to the Rosicrucians we see a history of fraud, or to be kind, idiots who let their imagination run away with them. We see outrageous, easily disprovable claims in books on the tarot and kabbalah. This is the problem with the mythic realm.
The only way you can know is to try it yourself. You may be surprised. If you are sensible you will probably choose not to. But as I hope I have proved, I am not sensible.
1) Be careful what you wish for, fate likes to bite you on the bottom Can Prayers Kill?
2) Who are we? And who is the true self? We’re the same thing in different skin
3) Practical Initiation for Kamikaze Pilots Why particle disintegration is good for you
4) How is magic even possible? The Spectrum of Consciousness