Learning Direct Magick, Step by Step

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This guide shows you each step to learning direct magick for novice, intermediate and experienced mages.


This site is about direct magick: Consciously directing the parts of your mind that handle magick, driving magick without relying on external forces, and consciously selecting the external force when you do channel one.

I call those external forces “systems,” and the traditional styles that rely on them — Thelema, Reiki, Enochian, etc — “system-based magick.”

You can do both system-based and direct magick. No need to choose. And learning direct magick will help you learn other styles faster and more completely.

If these terms are new, read the intro to this series for the big picture on how magick works. It’ll help you use the resources in this post.

Using This Guide

You’ll follow links away from this page, so you might want to bookmark this page (CTRL+D).

Pick the right starting point for yourself:

  • Novice: Never done magick or energy work.
  • Intermediate: Proficient at energy meditation, has begun learning a style of magick.
  • Experienced: 1 or more years experience, usually proficient in at least one style.

Each step links to a post or series. Follow the link and complete the exercises. Most exercises have a self-test, so you can verify you’ve learned the skill. Make sure you can do the self-test. After completing each step, return here to get the next one.

At the bottom of some posts is a section called “Other posts in this series,” with several links. That’s how you can recognize a series. Follow each link, in order from top to bottom (not chronological order), before returning here for the next step.

If you run into problems, write a comment. I’ll usually respond within 24 hours.

Learning Direct Magick for Novice Mages

A novice has never done magick or energy work before.

Novices need to learn to engage the parts of their mind that drive magick (their “mental muscles”). Do that with this energy meditation (or another one if you prefer). Practice until you can feel the energy, move it around your body, and maintain it for 5-10 minutes without feeling mentally tired. Read the comments at the bottom for questions and tips from other readers. Most people find it takes 1-2 weeks.

(Note: In newer posts, I’ve changed the term to “ethereal muscles.” Same thing, better metaphor for the term.)

Optionally, you might want to prove to yourself that you’re doing magick by sensing a partner’s emotions based on their energy. (They also need to know energy meditations). Intermediate mages can usually complete it in an hour, but if you’ve just started magick, give yourself a week. (The post is a class, just follow the exercises. Skip the rest of the series, those are other classes).

Then continue with the next section for intermediate mages, but allow 2-4x the time. For example, someone with several months of experience can learn to consciously engage their mental muscles in about 2 hours, but if you only have two weeks of experience, allow an afternoon or a weekend.

Learning Direct Magick for Intermediate Mages

An intermediate mage has begun learning one style of ritual magick or energy work. They can control energy, feel it move around their body, and easily maintain it for 5-10 minutes.

If you’re experienced with psychic intuition but haven’t done energy work, start with the energy meditation in the previous section.

Start by learning to consciously engage your mental muscles, so they respond to your rituals and visualizations immediately, whenever you want, not just when they notice you’re doing magick. It also lets you get all your mental muscles behind your magick, producing bigger results. Most mages can learn this in about 2 hours. (The post is a class, just follow the exercises. Skip the rest of the series, those are other classes).

Then learn to direct your mind through each step of a technique, instead of just visualizing the goal and letting your unconscious figure out how to achieve it. This lets you learn new techniques faster, and reproduce the procedure more precisely, producing more reliable results. That post is in a series, this step is just the exercises in the one post.

You’ll also want good shielding. That technique is more effective than visualizing a bubble around you (which can actually attract spirits), and faster than rituals like the LBRP (and less conspicuous when you’re in public).

Also, learn about systems, the driving force behind most styles of magick. Read these posts: types of systems, connecting to systems. (Skip the other posts in that series). Then read this series for the practical side of connecting and aligning to a system. (It’s written about psychics, but it applies to all systems. Also, skip the last post, on hacking systems. We’ll cover it later in this guide).

Then continue with the next section for experienced mages, allowing extra time to learn each skill.

Learning Direct Magick for Experienced Mages

An experienced mage has several years of experience, and is usually proficient in at least one style of magick or energy work. They can consciously engage their mental muscles, learn new styles quickly, and modify standard techniques to fit new situations.

Before you begin, review the material above for intermediate mages. You probably know most of it, but almost every mage finds some new skills when they start learning direct magick. Your experience will let you learn those skills quickly.

Start by developing your sensory connections. Sensory connections let you watch your magick as it works, so you can understand all the moving parts, fix problems and create new techniques, for both system-based and direct magick. The better your sensory connections are, the more you can see.

Optionally, learn to use magick to awaken your mental muscles. Previously, you’d learned to engage your mental muscles consciously, but that only works with muscles that are resting, not fully asleep. Most of your mental muscles are hibernating. They’ll awaken slowly as you learn a skill that uses them, but you can learn new skills more quickly by using magick to awaken the necessary muscles. (The first half of that series covers basic focused practice, the second half is this advanced technique).

Optionally, you might also want learn better magickal protection, with advanced shielding and some magickal offense. The bad guys already know it, so you should too.

Also optional, learn to hack systems. Some systems are associated with a style of magick, and only work with you once you’re initiated or attuned. That post shows you how to use those systems anyway, without becoming initiated / attuned.

After Completing The Exercises

Congratulations, you’re now an intermediate direct mage, ready to use it to influence the physical world. You can find most of the practical skills I’ve written about in the list to the left. You can also search with the search box to the right, or select topics from the tag cloud below it (click on a word that interests you; bigger words have more posts). And check my home page for new posts every Thursday.


Most of these posts are from a time when I was figuring out how to explain magick. They’re not as clear as I’d like. I’ll be updating each old post, starting with the ones for novices, over the next few months. Check the front page for notices about these updates.

Other posts in this series: If you liked this post, consider visiting my current blog at mikesententia.com.

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25 Responses to “Learning Direct Magick, Step by Step”

  1. mike says:

    Good site.

  2. John says:

    I am on day two of my visualization techniques. I am having a hard time with the mist, so i tried to visualize an object. I found this to be a lot easier. I was able to zoom in, zoom out, spin, and look at it as an ant does with hardly any effort but in both situations, in my mind it was dark. The object I was visualizing was blue, and I could just barely see the blue, but I would describe the experience more like a blind person feeling an object. It was like the lights were off and I couldn’t see well…

    • Hi John, that’s really interesting. Don’t worry too much about visualizations, they aren’t a huge part of direct magick. And thanks for taking the time to write, that helps me teach better!

  3. Clensy says:

    yesterday i tried imaging and meditation. after a few mins, I had headache. I tried grounding and just couldn’t get it. When i stopped, i was like drunk of alcohol. I couldn’t stand or walk properly.

    during meditation, i felt this heat or warm around my body, it was too comforting i never wanted to stop. My headache persisted and i had to.
    Should i continue?

    • It sounds like you really enjoyed the meditation, and had mild after-effects. So, continue practicing responsibly: Only do this when you can afford to be drunk afterward (not before work, not before driving, etc). And keep working on the grounding — maybe you like the energy so much, you couldn’t get your mind to release it the first time.

      Once you get the hang of all this, you’ll be able to enjoy the energy when you want, and release it when you’re done.

      Good luck!

  4. Jared says:

    Hey Mike,

    Good to see you’re still answering questions. Anyway, I’m just getting back into practice, and I have a problem. I was trying to do the exercise where I move energy from my chest, through my arms and into my legs. The next part is to lift my hands away from legs and make a sensory connection. That was the goal.

    What actually happened is that all the energy feels like it’s stuck in my hands. There’s this warm, almost burning sensation, even as I’m typing. I’ve tried grounding, I’ve tried moving the energy back up my arms, but nothing works. What did I do wrong?


    • Hi Jared, sorry for the slow reply.

      Try releasing the energy straight out of your hands. Instead of visualizing the energy flowing out your feet or whatever is touching the ground, visualize it leaving your hands. Try touching various things — metal, wood, fabric — and see if one of them is more effective. You can even try touching your own legs, moving the energy from your hands to your legs, then moving it down to your feet and into the ground.

      Please write back and let us know what works for you. Thanks!

  5. Matt says:

    Hey Mike,

    Right off the bat, do you think that meditation is the best way to start off as a new comer?

  6. neil says:

    I just don’t understand what im suppose to feel or what im suppose to specifically do.

    • Explore. Experiment. Try my exercises, try other exercises, see what works for you, and then figure out the underlying mechanics and help us build magick into a rigorous, understood field that helps people.

      That’s my answer for what you’re supposed to do. It’s big. It’s not all laid out for you. But it’s worth doing.

  7. Minty says:

    Dear Mike

    I’m so excited to find your site. I have been suffering from hives for 3 long itchy weeks and although I’m a very experienced Reiki Master I was struggling to breakthrough. Reading your blog on your Hives client and the rest of your site has giving me much needed new insights, hope and a renewed excitement in discovering new techniques! ! I will be getting into all the Magick over the next few days and will give you an update.

    Many, many thanks

  8. Minty says:

    Thanks Mike! I very much look forward to hearing from you soon!

  9. merseymale says:

    Is the book ready yet, please?

    • I’ve actually been returning to the book recently. Updates should be coming in the next few months, though it may be a while before the book is complete. Thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoy this series until the book is ready.

  10. Adam says:

    Hi Mike,
    I just listened to you talk about Magick on one of my favorite podcasts- The Higherside Chats as I was driving in this morning to work. I’ve been trying to practice TM,which I learned last year. Will this help at all? Im super stoked on learning your technique. Thanks for posting your knowledge. We should all help each other out to reach the higher consciousness we are capable of. Peace✌

    • Hi Adam, I think TM = Transcendental Meditation. I don’t know much about that system, but anything that trains you to focus your mind should help with Direct Magick (and with lots of other things too). Enjoy!

  11. Ryan Stark says:

    Hey there Mike. If you may remember, based on the email I put this under, I was fairly active on this website a good while ago. I was attempting to learn, and hopefully become confident with direct magick. Unfortunately due to school, sports, and other stressful things I was unable to finish. Honestly I never made it to the 2nd stafe of this set of steps. I’m starting again though now that I have the time.

    What I’m wondering is where should I place myself? Novice or Intermediate. I know I’m definitely not experienced. The thing is I’m not sure of where I should go. Unfortunately, I cannot say I am proficient, or have even learned a type of magick. I am able to instantly feel my energy though, and strangely enough whenever I’m cold I can instantly warm myself by envisioning that an “aura” of flames appears around me. Where should I start now? Thanks.

  12. simon says:

    Hello Mike..

    I got a few questions:

    1) Would these exercises help me obtain what I want in life even if it may mean getting certain people to accept me? I’m not trying to make people my mind slaves. But I want to get them to focus on me as a primary person in their life.

    2) How is this different from more archaic exercises of magik depicted in those old magik books of the 16th and 17th centuries?

    3) Do your exercises invole or evoke spirits?

    Looking forward to your repponse.

    • Hi Simon, if someone doesn’t want to focus on you as the primary person in their life, magick won’t change that. My best advice is to start creating something you really want to see in the world, like a blog or a community or some art, and find people who are also excited and passionate about that. In terms of magick (and just about everything else), instead of trying to make this specific person really into you, instead aim to be in a healthy relationship with someone else who is really into you all on their own.

      2. I’m not up on those old magick books. You tell me.

      3. Here are my posts on spirits: https://magickofthought.com/tag/spirits/

  13. Dennis says:

    Hello. I just found out a week or so ago from my mother’s spiritual healer that I am in touch with “magick” and that I have “potential” I have no idea about anything involving things like that and Im a bit skeptical about it all. Anyways Im here to ask for any help I can get to try to start out on “my journey” putit was put by the healer. Any and all input is greatly appreciated.

    • Hi Dennis, I’d say that everyone has the ability to learn to work with energy and magick. To get started, see the free book-in-progress, linked from the banner at the top of this page. Enjoy!

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