Magick Doesn’t “Work Like Magic”

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Remember those cheesy ads for cleaners, where they’d dip a stained cloth in a bowl of special soap? Remember how they said it “works like magic”?

One of the ironies of any mage’s life is that magick doesn’t “work like magic.”

Real magick promotes healing, but it doesn’t alter tissue instantly. Real magick guides you to make better decisions, and might even guide people around you to make decisions slightly more favorable to you, but won’t make you Bill Gates or Richard Branson. Like marketing and medicine and psychology, real magick makes small alterations that, over time, add up to something significant.

Real magick doesn’t “work like magic.”

What does this mean for us, as practitioners of magick? It means that, when we say we “practice magick,” we may be conjuring up an expectation that only illusionists and frauds could hope to meet. It means that, if our customers expect our magick to work like magic — and can you blame them? — they’re going to be disappointed. It means that we may be using the wrong word.

I don’t have an answer. But now I can at least express the problem concisely: Magick doesn’t “work like magic.”

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3 Responses to “Magick Doesn’t “Work Like Magic””

  1. f3n1x_hvn732 says:

    Well, for the uninitiated manifesting sure works that way. One day you visualize something and then “magically” it came to you in the more unusual way, or you have a idea and then something external happen around you that can only be categorized as “miracle”. I’m practicing with a “passive” manifesting software and work so well with consistency, accuracy and speed. I’m even afraid because it works so well.

    Other software of climate changes have effects almost immediate and also at large. We need to advance magick more, we need to practice psychokinesis and telepathy, and study the new advances in science to advance the softwares. Well is only my opinion.

  2. Ananael Qaa says:

    In fact, this difference is the main reason Crowley added the trailing “K” – “to distinguish the true science of the Magi from its counterfeits,” if I recall the quote correctly.

    It’s not just magick that differs in real life from its fictional representation. When was the last time you met a martial arts expert who could fly through the air as in most cheesy Kung Fu movies? How about a scientist who could do the equivalent of uploading a computer virus to an alien spacecraft, as in Independence Day – when half the time it’s pretty difficult to get a Mac and PC to talk to each other, let alone a Mac and an alien mainframe (or whatever the heck the alien computer was supposed to be)?

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