Why this post?
- collect most probable theories
- combine them into a meta-theory
- be critical and segway into variations or opposite ideas
- show the inner workings of magic; the manipulation of experienced reality via consciousness
This post I initially wrote on September 2, 2018 and had forgotten about it. Now I bring it back to life and will add more to it if I feel like it.
The purpose of magic
“To use our sixth sense to change reality as we experience it through our five senses”
The mechanics of magic
Why is this possible?
The reality as we experience it is a subset of a larger reality. The five senses are streams of data that we receive within a virtual reality environment. This is akin to being shot by another player in Battlefield 4. The data of that experience is produced by another player and reaches you as data and translates in the form of a blurred vision, red splatters on your screen or simply a message that you died. Your character died, and you can rejoin after a few seconds.
In this reality which we call life, most people consider having one life only. It is very hard to comprehend how multiple lives would be a reality or possible. Most of us do not have data on past lives and if we do think we have, there is still doubt and the challenge to validate the data. To simply believe our data leads to wishful thinking and sets you back.
When we follow the theory as proposed by Thomas Campbell, we learn that our life in this reality is part of a series of lives. We also learn that “I” is like the character in Battlefield and that we also respawn, or start a new life. The real “I”, in this model, is the player outside of this reality of material and five senses. Magic is within this model the method of reaching out to the real-I through your character in this reality and modifying the five-sense reality we experience at this moment.
From a virtual reality perspective, this makes sense and should work. To come back to the Battlefield 4 analogy, it is as if you drop the controller for a moment and walk over to the player to distract him a little so that player won’t aim right and shoot you.
Attention includes energy, emotion and repetition. You can tap into existing sources of emotion. Imagine rock concerts where the masses dance and chant in tune. Or use the Apple logo, which puts people in a state of awe when they see it. You can listen to music on your headphones and use that as a source of energy, emotion or as a mental driving force.
It is hard to explain what happens at such moments, I recognize something happens in my (and around) my body. A sensation of invincibility and certainty takes over. It might all very well be a delusion, but what does it matter? Now it has become my reality, my feelings and my experience. To me, it is real; therefore I act as I am invincible and certain of all my thoughts. This is key.
Intention includes clarity of thought and, for me also, focus. With intention to have to face Your truth: what do you really want? With this comes authenticity, as ignoring the darker or selfish side of yourself also obscure your true intentions. Face all your sides and your intentions will give a more predictable outcome.
A tool I use is to ask myself “why”. For example, I want to win the lottery. Why? Because then I got money to live comfortably. Why? Because… I prefer not to work. No, that is not true at all. I love to work, but I like to work on the things that inspire me. So again, “Because then I got money to live comfortably.” Why? So, I can work on things that inspire me. Why? Well, those things give me energy. Why? When I do things I like, I feel good, I become happy and a nicer person to others.
So let me get this straight now. I think I need money to become a nicer person and do the things that inspire me? How much is true? Certainly, a significant part of having financial independence helps a great deal. But do I need the lottery for that? Why not intent to have a life full of inspiring work instead?
Or, is there a shadow side that I rather obfuscate, perhaps? Is that money thing not also about showing off and buying loads of material crap, so I get false admiration from others? Let assume for a moment that this is true. Then, when you face your “darker” side, you actually learn something about a need that you have: admiration and attention.
How about instead of ignoring that, how about we integrate this into our intention? We could now say:
have a life full of inspiring work instead + be appreciated by others as I contribute positively to their life
This is my thinking, and this is how I organize my life and thinking. Hence, I work on getting all those so-called dark sides of me out of the shadows.
Belief includes open-mindedness and acceptance (not forceful description) and ritual. Belief can work for you, and against you. An example of how belief could potentially work for you is here in my posts about self-efficacy.
Like many things in life, I see also belief as a spectrum. On the one side is disbelief (also a belief) and faith, in the middle is a sense of being agnostic or indifferent to either extremes. The more I experience how my thinking and words affect this physical reality, the more I have faith in this. A logical self enforcing cycle of cause and effect.
Still, when I exercise magic, I want to get to the place in the middle. The place where I do not have an opinion and am able to accept whatever comes. No judgement, no acting upon the thoughts, but simply accepting, registering and moving forward.
Both disbelief, most sceptics are strong believers, or faith I find unuseful in a good magical practice. If they do occur, I try to balance them out with the opposite thought. For example, when I start a practice and my thought is “this will never work” I simply counter that with “it might work as well, who knows, and this exercise is about my experience and growth.
The point is that my thinking has an effect. I take away pressure from my magical exercise by adding the “experience and growth” bit. I always learn, also from unexpected events. This way of looking at my life brings balance and a peace of mind. And it is this balance and peace of mind that are excellent starting points to practice magic. Hate and other strong emotions are mighty as well, and I get to that below.
Focus and attention are closely related, I still think. Focus is to me about the repetition of the intent. Also, focus is about no swaying into other thoughts. Focus is about staying on track and to keep the intent pure. But to a large degree, focus is about repetition too, as you keep focussed and thus keep repeating the same intent.
To be continued
Energy or emotion or charge
magic is also an exchange of energy or emotion. You give and you receive. This is related to the attention or repetition and to the intensity of the act of performing magic.
To be continued
William (Bill) Bengston shows something entirely different. In his many scientific studies, executed at different laboratories around the world under controlled conditions, he clearly shows that humans can cure a terminally ill animal (mouse for example). The human ideally does not believe in healing or miracles, leaning on the sceptical side is even better. For a good description, I recommend watching this informative and entertaining presentation at The Leadership Energy Summit Asia in 2014.
My understanding is that Bill Bengston uses emotion as its primary driver for change. This emotion I would describe as butterflies in the stomach, the happy feeling, the selfish feeling. Nothing about love & light and angels and all that. His method of getting you there is what Bill calls “image cycling”. With image cycling, you make an as long as possible list of stuff you want to have that makes you thrilled. You imagine as vividly and realistically as possible that you have that stuff and picture yourself using it, and, feeling super happy.
After you have practice enough, so you can focus your attention for 20 to 30 minutes and only (or mainly) think those happy images, you are ready to go to the next step. In his early experiments, he has students hold a transparent plastic container with a sick mouse (terminal cancer) in it. The students cycle at a rapid pace through the happy-images. No thinking about the mouse and the need to remove the cancer. However, after that, the cancer grows and grows, the mouse reaches the moment it should die. But instead, the cancer begins to implode in the days following, and the mouse survives.
Even better, when the mouse is reinjected with the cancer causing chemicals, the mouse does not get ill. The blood from that mouse has now the cure in it. When this mouse blood is injected in another mouse that has the same cancer type, that cancerous mouse gets better too…
This is only the beginning of his experiments, it gets way better!
My method has evolved over many years and is a combination of the two above. I noticed early on in life that extreme anger, or hate, affected others. Not always for the better, and that depended on my intention, not so much my thoughts.
For example, when I have been angry for someone I know for not contacting me, she or he calls me soon thereafter or sends me a message. My emotion is that of anger, frustration and negative thoughts. My intention, however, is that of my eagerness to be in touch.
The anger emotion needs to be intense, and I need to spend some time on this through dedicated attention. Let say I think 5 minutes negatively about that person, that sounds like a good ballpark figure.
Now, to be destructive, I need to add repetition to the above, like a ritual. The concept of destructive I like to call a synonym of Tom Campbells’ concept of high entropy. This means within his model that there is a lot of room for change. Situations of chaos have more space for change than situations of stability. I hope this makes sense.
I cannot remember how I evolved my magical practice. I do remember a few of the “aha moments”. Some are listed here below.
- Just before a Christmas holiday started in one of my high school years, a friend jokingly wished me a bad Christmas. He was not ill intended I assume, still I had the worst Christmas ever.
- Just before the deadline of a for me important design competition, I got the solution to the problem.
- After we had completed successfully a project, the client did not want to pay. Disastrous consequences.
- Reading Bruce Lipton’s book on the honeymoon effect where you do not get sick
- A Controlled Remote Viewing workshop where “stuff happened”
The honeymoon effect jived with me as I had noticed earlier in life, that I could change my negative emotion by imagining falling in love, or, creating those “butterflies” in my stomach. Later in life, I found out that the stomach wall plays a role in these hormones.
When I began to read more about magic, I came across concepts of sexual magic. The notion of postponing the orgasm is a tool to create the right circumstances for magic to take place. Imagine that when you postpone the orgasm when you are at the point where you already feel these “butterflies”, you effectively add attention to the positive emotion. I will write more about this one day in the future.
Thus far I see a lot of overlap between the thoughts I have on practical magic. As you might have noticed, none is about waving the magic wand (maybe it is…), the use of attributes and complex rituals invoking other entities. My thoughts are centred around the notion that it is your Self that affects others OUTSIDE of this reality frame.