White Magick, Black Magick, White Science, Black Science

by Mike Sententia on November 5, 2014

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From a friend’s magick class:

  • White magick is about finding the way of the world, and working with it.
  • Black magick is about doing whatever it takes to get power. Stealing energy, blood magick, sacrifice, etc.

Those aren’t perfect definitions. That’s ok. You get the gist.

It got me thinking: Science is an entirely different paradigm.

Science is about understanding the way of the world, like white magick.

Then we use that understanding to control the world, like black magick.

When you do energy healing, you’re aiming to influence nerves and other cells, causing them to behave differently than normal.

When you create luck, you’re influencing events, and more skill means fewer unwanted side-effects.

I don’t think the answer is to fear power. I think the answer is to develop as much control over the world as we can, and then use it for something worth doing.

And fortunately, blood sacrifice and stealing energy aren’t required (or even useful) to develop that control.

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Francesca Gentille November 6, 2014 at 10:51 AM

Ethics. I think the real issue is ETHICS:
that branch of philosophy dealing with values relating to human conduct, with respect to the rightness and wrongness of certain actions and to the goodness and badness of the motives and ends of such actions.

Magic. Power. Energy. Science. In and of themselves they are neutral. BUT, without an ethical inquiry, they can be utilized for selfish reasons, or to have power over, or to attain a goal no matter the cost.

Whether we call it Black or White, Good or Bad, Generous or Selfish. Life, & the abilities we use in life benefit by engaging in an ethics.

Without the practice of looking at the ethics of:
– whether to use the power
– how to use the power for the good of all
– the cost of wielding the power

We could use any power or ability in ways that are harmful for others.

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Ananael Qaa November 7, 2014 at 2:27 PM

The way that a lot of people talk about the white/black dichotomy is one of my pet peeves as well. The ethics of any magical operation depends on the intent of the operator, not some essential characteristic of the magick itself. For example, you could perhaps say that a scientist working on building biological weapons is a “black biologist,” while a scientist working on the cure for a disease is a “white biologist.” But that would be silly – the principles of biology work the same way for both, and magick is no different.

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Mike Sententia November 11, 2014 at 3:55 PM

Well said.

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Jeffrey November 11, 2014 at 9:33 AM

White/Black magick, there is no difference.

Ethics…way to personal, and too easy to justify, in my opinion.

for example, as Ananael pointed out with the two biologists, one is working to destroy life…the other working to…also, destroy life. Does the destruction of a ‘lower’ life form to preserve a ‘higher’ life form justify killing? does that qualify it for the ‘white’ side of things? from the ‘lower’ life forms perspective, I would bet it is just as ‘black’ as one could get.

if one over thinks this issue, it could be potentially disabling to the individual. After all, we must kill and consume to live.

Should the more learned individual refrain from exercising their knowledge, so as not to put the less learned at a disadvantage? Absolutely not, and this applies directly to magick. Knowledge is used to gain an advantage, whether it be over the environment (luck spells perhaps), in biology (healing, ect.), over interactions with others (to gain influence, get a job, ect.).

I believe the answer to this is that
1. we are obligated to garner as much control over our magick as is possible, so as to lessen the fall out from a poorly aimed or executed operation. (imagine a toddler and a house of cards if you will)
2. to exercise restraint. doing what is necessary, and not going over board. Learning to judge what is enough to accomplish the given task. (why use a boulder when a pebble will do)
3. to exercise wisdom, to learn when it is better to let a situation play itself out, and choose to not interfere. some things must be allowed to happen, else the experience/lesson is lost, and nothing learned.

I think I will stop here otherwise I fear I may write a book lol.

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