The Importance of Magical Continuing Education

A few years ago I was in college and asked to quickly perform a banishing ritual at a friend’s house.  I had been out of “the business” for a while, exploring some other spiritual paths, and the last exorcisms I’d done had been using Christian priesthood authority.  This obviously functions very differently than a generic pagan banishing, and now I had to look some things up again.  It’s not that I didn’t know what I was doing, it’s that I didn’t know immediately. My Tibetan astrology teacher once told me that there’s three kinds of astrologers.  The best astrologers only need…

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A Peaceful Ritual for Haunted Houses

One of the more mainstream popular topics in magic, perhaps even one where it overlaps with the interests of the general public, is that of hauntings, ghosts, and so on. This seems to fall under the broad umbrella of the “paranormal” and so is approached somewhat differently than magical work or sorcery or conjuration or so on. And interestingly, this is despite that the tools of sorcery and magic are in fact some of the very best for working with ghosts or haunting spirits and so on. Most people, when asked about “tools for ghost hunting,” are more likely to…

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It’s Nice to be Nice

When people first begin dabbling in the magical arts, it seems to me that the first thing anyone runs to is defensive spells, banishings, generally forceful, wrathful stuff. Regardless of what initial approach one takes, this always seems to be the first go-to. No matter what one’s approach, the first thing they learn tends to be how to make spirits go away. Beyond this, it’s such a common and pervasive thing that people tend to double down on it long after they have learned that not every spirit in the area is a demon sent to destroy them. “Just in…

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For Whom We Toll Bells

Magical ritual comes in a wide variety of forms united in common purpose but generally differing in details. When we look at ritual, we can approach it from many directions, depending on our own predisposition, prior knowledge, and so on. For instance, on a practical, operational level we may focus on the details of the performance of the ritual; what incenses are used? What words are said? By whom? On a larger scope level, we may look at the purpose the ritual is intended to bring about. Is it an initiation? A propitiation? An offering? A practice of self-transformation? Somewhere…

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Divination is an Intuitive Act

I’ve discussed already how it’s okay to be wrong, and in that article I mentioned several times that divination is ultimately an act of intuition. I’d like to clarify my meaning on that by discussing what divination is. Generally, divination can be said to be a process by which one gathers information about a situation that they do not have conventional access to. For example, nobody would say that looking outside the window is a method of divining the weather, but it could be said that the meteorologist divines the weather based on past trends using his intuition. Naturally, the…

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The Fear of Being Wrong is Worse than Being Wrong

Nobody appreciates the idea that they might be wrong, especially not those of us who are inclined towards the divinatory arts.  We’re supposed to know the unknowable, after all.  And it’s not just a matter of pride, either – our society puts a great emphasis on scientific materialism. If our divinations are wrong, it becomes difficult to shake the idea that the entire corpus of work is wrong. When we accurately predict an event or divine the nuances of a situation, we feel vindicated in our belief that what we’re doing works. When, however, we make a mistake, we feel…

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Crucible 2016 Recap

I’ve just returned from Crucible 2016, having been invited by organizer Arthur Moyer of Omnimancy to present Divination without Self-Deception.  The contents of the presentation will be made available over time on this blog as well as in an eventual book.  I had the amazing opportunity to sit on a panel with Jason Miller of Strategic Sorcery.  For those of you who don’t know Jason’s work and have an interest in the occult, I highly suggest it.  Jason’s presentation talked about the Tarot de Marseille and how to throw Tarot without engaging in vague esoteric twaddle. His talk so well corresponded to my own inclinations…

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