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Identifying Magical Power

To: alt.paranormal.spells.hexes.magic,alt.lucky.w,alt.magick.tyagi,alt.occult.methods
From: catherine yronwode 
Subject: Re: Identifying Magical Power (was love spell gone horribly ...)
Date: Fri, 15 Jun 2001 08:31:31 GMT

nagasiva wrote:
> 50010604 Vom Hail Satan!
> sri catyananda :
> >I have seen [a particular spell] work that way with my own eyes.
> I know we began this conversation offline, but I'd like to in
> some measure take it up here for additional input.
> perspective of someone who DISbelieves in the effectiveness
> of magic) what methods do you use to determine whether a
> spell lends a beneficial effect to your intended result,
> as compared to being effectless and adding nothing?

Well, my spells are pretty direct -- i ask for love or money or
something tangible -- and if i get it, then i figure the spell worked. 

More ambiguous are those spells which are ongoing: for instance, several
years ago, i asked Jesus to see to it that Lucky Mojo grossed $100.00
per day through web-based mail orders. At te time, few people were on
the web and the sum seemed high, but i faithfully thanked Jesus every
time we grossed $100.00. After a while i noticed that on some days we
grossed WAY more and on other days far less, but i am pretty poor with
math and could not be keeping averages. So did the spell work? Well,
yes, i think so, because i long ago stopped bothering to keep track --
and we surely gross that much per day through web-based mail orders on
average now -- but i often wonder: DID JESUS TAKE CARE OF THIS BY

> the reason that I ask this is in part because I figure there
> might be some kind of value to comparing spells, comparing
> magical components, talismans or lucky objects, etc. in
> order to maximize one's chances at success, 

That is definitely the mission at alt.paranormal.spells.hexes.magic. 

Just speaking for myself, i have found that working with lodestones to
be VERY effective for me. Time and again i have used them and achieved
my goals. They are so simple a thing -- and yet, for me, they are very
powerful. But i know others who report more success with visualizations,
or candle-magic, or drug-induced trances accompanied by fervent prayer.
Different strokes for different folks, you know? 

> identify those
> who are providing sham magical goods, 

As you know, my mottos are "traditional," "authentic," and "genuine" --
because i like nature-based folk-magic. The only shams you will find in
that realm of magic are the purveyors of falsely-labelled botanical and
zoological curios and the folks who sbstitute synthetic fragrances for
real essential oils of plants. A pox on them.

But i have seen folks get amazingly good results from "sham magical
goods," too, proving that personal dedication and will can push one a
long way... 

> discerning when one's
> own magical empowerments on talismans etc. have failed, etc.

Keeping a magical diary is valuable in that it may help one recognize
both successes and failures to go back and read what you did and compare
it against present reality. Few folks want to admit to failures in
public, however. 

> is there some way to eliminate perceiver bias or faith in
> the spell or object (which may well be an important part of
> the magic) in order to tell if one's spell or magical thing-
> a-majig is potent or a dud? if so, how do YOU do it?

It is hard enough to eliminate "perceiver bias" in the everyday world,
short of having all experiemnts performed by indiependent groups of
people under rigidly controlled scientific protocols -- and even then
one gets stuck with things like the Heisenberg uncertainty principle! 

I think that if treating magic as a form of rational science or art is
important to us (and it is NOT always impoortant to me, i might add),
then the best we can do is to write down in a journal what we intended
to accomplish with each spell -- in other words, keep a magical diary of
some sort, and then come back at a later date and see whether we
achieved that goal -- and write down our take on the success or failure
of the spell. In a few years, if we kept such a diary faithfully, i
think we would beuild up a body of knowledge about what had proved
effective for us. 

cat yronwode 

Hoodoo in Theory and Practice --

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