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Just before Yule one of my readers
asked me to explain why I was not more interested in working magick on big
issues, such as stopping global warming or bringing about more enlightenment in
public policy. He said he planned
to do such things up till the Solstice.
For that reason I did not
immediately reply. More power to him.
If magick works, and I believe that
it can, one requirement is that the magician’s will be as pure, focused, and
without any waver in believing that the goal is possible. Any good to come from my reader’s work would not be helped by
But the Solstice is past now, and
so I’ll give my answer.
My working definition of magick is
“the non-coincidental accumulation of meaningful coincidences.” Which means we never know for sure. Sometimes a tossed coin will come up a dozen times in a row and not violate probability. Just not very often.
In the physical realm I believe
magick works best by empowering a small change that will have progressively
bigger impacts down the line. Our
minds are powerful, but so is the resistance of physical reality to mental
phenomena. And we are working
within a sea of psychic noise.
Spectacular effects simply seem outside the realm of human possibility
to me, and if some humans have attained such capacities they are wise enough to
make sure they remain unknown.
The Harmonic Connvergence
I know of one major wonderful and
completely unanticipated event that followed a worldwide meditational effort at
encouraging change for the better.
In August 1987 people worldwide, mostly New Age in their sympathies, all
meditated on world peace and related issues. There were maybe 20,000 involved. None of the promised UFO sightings and such happened.
I was one of the skeptics who
called it the “moronic convergence.”
In June, 1988, Lithuania started
the series of events that led to the collapse of communist rule in Europe and
its transformation elsewhere. The collapse of a despotic state that encompassed
much of Europe and Asia happened within two years as the pressures for its
dissolution built. Was there any
Mikhail Gorbachev became General
Secretary of the USSR in 1985. His
extraordinary unwillingness to enforce control violently (I wish we had more
people like him), and his attempt to reform the Soviet system from within
through perestroika, were key catalysts in the rapid and peaceful end of an
unusually brutal regime. Not only was Communism’s fall in Russia peaceful, it
was peaceful everywhere else but in Romania. And there the total killed was small for such an event.
Gorbachev’s rise to power came before
before the Harmonic Convergence that might
have unleashed magickal power.
So if the mass meditation had any impact here it was to
make small shifts that in time would lead to big outcomes, building on currents
already in motion. And that was
with 20,000 people or more involved, although most were hardly skilled at this
sort of thing. But there was no focus on anything specific. At most it might have changed the psychic atmosphere around certain key people. But of course, that “at most” would have been quite a lot.
The effort by English witches to
prevent the German invasion of Great Britain may or may not have been
effective. We will never
know. But Hitler’s sudden change
of mind seems strange and a great many people, many of whom were experienced in
such matters, concentrated on this one man
and sent a single brief message: “You cannot cross the sea. You cannot
come.” The energy was reportedly
enhanced by some present giving their lives. This suggests smaller groups
attempting bigger tasks had best be very serious… (For the
story and the evidence see Philip Heselton: Wiccan Roots.)
As the possible English case
indicates, this does not mean magick cannot be employed for larger
purposes. But it must be very wisely
employed, and with discipline. Magick works for better or worse at the retail level.
I am intrigued with the survival of
the Alaska national Wildlife Refuge despite years of republican control and
their intent to drill there. I
know that many Pagans were involved in fighting against this effort, and would
be amazed were magic not used. But
it would have been used by many, and likely many would have agreed on a single
message in their workings.
This is why I do not personally get
involved in large-scale projects where we are asked to use magick. I think the energy will be dispersed,
sent to a vague target “world peace” for example, and be drowned by psychic
noise. If there was a large scale
short of that I’ll use it for helping to heal people close at hand and other
such things. I’ve used it for very very focused healings at a distance, and the
person got better. But was this a
coincidence? Or not.
And this points to another aspect
of magick: you will likely not know whether what you did worked or not, even if
it did. It might, after all, be
just a coincidence. So my
recommendation would be for those seeking to help others magickally would be to
work “retail” on a single recipient, be very very focused, and completely let
go of the working once it is over.