As Halloween or Samhain approaches, I want to share my take on whether magick in the traditional sense has any kind of reality to speak of. I have my own definition of it, which may lean more towards a psychological understanding (click here to see this definition: Esoterica), but does magick, assumed throughout the remainder of this post to be of the traditional kind, does it have any reality in or bearing on the work I do? As one in a helping profession of healing, do I think magick ever really becomes involved when helping others?
I will share with you what I learned from two trusted sources as I answer.
After reading one contemporary historian's account of his experiences witnessing groups of others performing magick over the course of three years, his conclusion being that the practice of magick does have an efficacy and a reality of success, assuming that there are certain conditions or circumstances when performing a magickal working which do lend themselves to it, I would say that, yes, I do believe magick can and does become involved when helping others.
At least, I trust in the evidence above concluding that magick can work effectively, given the right circumstances.
Carl Jung, when writing about his belief in synchronicities or meaningful coincidences, acausal events which happen simultaneously between a person and a phenomenon or a person and another person without seeming explanation, highlighted the need for a strong experience of emotion to exist for a synchronicity to occur. He cited one medieval scholar's belief in magick, in its similar requirement for an emotional component being present which lends itself to the magickal working.
I believe in Jung's conclusions in his work on synchronicities, how they parallel the need for an emotional component to be present and felt for magickal workings to be effective.
In other words, I believe magick can work and it does become involved when helping others.
When a strong emotion is present and being felt, either by me or the person I am helping, the information provided and felt during that time can have a healing and lasting effect, make an impression, this being the intention of release or the pureness of it being felt, for whatever it is one may want to tell and never think about again, the experience of a heartfelt sense of being with someone during their emotional recollection of difficult or traumatic times, the inspired sharing of insight and information, shared with emotional strength, to convey the belief and meaning of what is being said to guide another on their path--any or all of these could be viewed from the above examples as being ripe for magick to occur, for magickal happenings to happen, where one, or both of us, feels a strength and clarity of emotion and intent, wanting and willing almost for what is said to be released or embraced, and it is believed in that moment, for what is said, to be how it is, to be how it is said, and that belief and togetherness, through emotion, help wield the workings of what could be called magick, whether the work ever formally arises or is talked about that way.
Yes, I believe magick exists in helping others, and it is the emotional connection and experiences in and of those encounters which lay the groundwork for it to occur.
Please ponder and enjoy as final thoughts the following from historian Ronald Hutton on his experiences observing magickal workings which actually work, in reference to his earlier account above:
"The other consists of those workings in which the operators have a deep personal interest and invest powerful emotions. They are rarely undertaken if they appear to run against the natural course of events or to be based upon unreasonable expectations. They are employed most commonly, and avidly, if a natural process ought to have occurred but seems to be mysteriously blocked, or if the odds for a desirable and an undesirable outcome to a process seem to be evenly balanced. This pattern has been very clear in the five covens which I have observed steadily over lengthy periods, and the apparent success rate of that class of operation is very high indeed."
From The Triumph of the Moon (p.396). OUP Oxford. Kindle Edition.
I hope you enjoy a happy and safe Halloween coming up.
Perhaps in honor of the full moon tomorrow, I would like to share with you a couple of songs from Tom Petty's first solo album, Full Moon Fever.
Each of them capture an important part of the work I do, and I end up either talking about what they represent with those I help or certainly letting what they represent influence my work.
When we need to speak up and honor ourselves, along with trying to respect any others involved, being assertive becomes important, and I invariably seem to mention the topic in my practice.
I think this first song greatly establishes the firm boundary of how much one should honor oneself when faced with any difficulty involving others.
Music video by Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers performing I Won't Back Down. (C) 1989 Geffen Records
[I do think the official copyright above may not be entirely accurate, since I believe only some of The Heartbreakers assisted with this album, with just one performing in the video, to my knowledge.]
This next song captures a more intangible aspect of the work I do, which I may not always mention or perhaps ever directly talk about, although I do mention it on this blog.
When we embrace more the mystery of life, there comes more of a stillness, a peacefulness, a pure potential for what may be next, what may be an answer, what may be nothing more, or less, than healthy truth and guidance.
When he sings about working on a mystery and going wherever it leads, this captures the essence of this.
I hope you enjoy these.
Music video by Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers performing Runnin' Down A Dream. (C) 1989 Geffen Records
[Again, I think the official copyright may not be fully accurate for this video. Some of The Heartbreakers assisted with the album. In the video, perhaps they all do appear though midway through.]
[Historical note: When I mention this past month in this post, I am referring to September of 2021, when I did have COVID-19, but within a couple of weeks, after feeling better without a fever, I was cleared by the state health department to be out and about in the world once again and to be able to help others once more in September.]
Before old habits and thoughts potentially take their accustomed place again, I want to share what seems relevant and meaningful from having had COVID-19 over this past month. I also could never express enough my thoughts and feelings regarding COVID-19, particularly for those who have been touched by it in any way.
I have mostly found in my life, perhaps more so when I was younger and certainly over this past month, when I am sick I am able to reach a level of peacefulness at some point, where I am almost completely removed from the everyday world. I have described myself in other posts as being a mystic, and I think a door for me at these times opens: I am able to just be with my understanding of what the universe is at a larger level.
When I have just only been able to rest, or sit peacefully, or stare even, with hardly a thought to be had, and if this is experienced without the feeling of bodily symptoms or concerns hardly at all, this approximates or is the experience of being a mystic, a similar experience to be found in meditation as well.
One step at a time becomes the approach when coming out of this experience. The energy expended is just towards each next step. The energy level is low, but it does not have room for more egoistic concerns, other than just for survival and for being well. We want to be in this state almost exclusively, it would seem, for our health and for continuing to live. When other concerns of an everyday nature come up, which we have to expend more energy to meet, we do not want to expend the energy to address them, but we know we must in order to survive.
These all describe my general sense of living: I do not want to do much else other than be at one with, feel that oneness with, the universe or God, if you will. Worldly or other concerns at times weigh me down and take me away from that state and that feeling, that knowledge of being at one like that. The trick or the ideal is to feel that oneness, that quality of just being, without the extraneous thoughts, in all circumstances and at all times.
Having had COVID-19 basically enforced this perspective of reality, and I enjoyed it in that sense, that I was hovering as a person in existence at that threshold of just being with the universe, while retaining some sense of myself, and almost dissolving completely in that experience of oneness. Again, and very accurate: this is how coming closer to and merging with an understanding of the universe is, how a mystical experience comes to be experienced and felt.
Coming back now into everyday life, I see now how my energy becomes expended or is easily tempted to be expended. I am still somewhat fighting these old habits and tendencies.
What I hope to retain from my time having COVID-19 is the meaningful application and expenditure of my time, which means my energy, and the furthest from my ideal would be to expend my time and energy on worries and concerns that I expend just for the habit of worries and concerns.
This I do not find to be helpful at all, and as I trusted in my body and the universe during my time with COVID-19, I also want to continue to trust in my own inclinations towards healthy ways of living, which include happy ways of living, and in the universe for guiding me and just being with me, maybe even to the point of the universe handling what seem like major concerns or what to worry about but actually are not.
Time needs to be honored each step of the way, for what feels right to you, never pressing the panic button to change reality into something it is not.
When time and self become thinner and seem to vanish, this again would be a mystical experience, and it actually describes living in a fulfilling way, if one is enjoyably being or doing whatever it is one is doing.
With COVID-19 I was surviving, hoping each moment and step to come out the other side, feeling that oneness at times with the universe or God, certainly some real presence Who I hoped had my back. I certainly enjoyed feeling the closeness then.
Now I can say I can see where our energy may travel, where we may expend it in thoughts that may fritter it away.
It is my hope that we know a real connection to ourselves and to the universe, for our own guidance within and for what the universe can provide.
Perhaps it is a narrower door to travel through, or to keep finding ourselves needing to walk through, than the regular thoroughfares and passageways we walk in life.
The time and energy spent to go there, I think, are completely worth it. If you are not shown this doorway through your own life circumstances, then I hope you can find it through beginning to trust in yourself and your own ideas and notions of what may be the right path to travel.
The universe has your back, I feel this, and this takes trust and surrender.
Being a mystic, I think this is the only way to live.
Much peace and comfort to you, with a deep connection to yourself and the universe.
Mark Newlon, feeling the embrace of the sacred feminine daily!
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