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 Can Magic Be "modern"?
☞Tomber☜
post Aug 17 2012, 02:18 PM
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This topic is in the Life&Entertainment forum since I think I can stuff this into the "rumors" category. Anyway my question for everyone is about whether or not magic can be more "modernized", especially in terms of classification and a unified system? Or will magic always be a questionable limb of religion and esoteric philosophy? Most practices I see, both being published in theory and being practiced by people feel archaic. Personally I enjoy the antiquarian feel of magic, it's a nice style, I think.

But even astrology, which I think has become the most modernized form of magic (with computerized horoscopes and digital readings haphazard though they may be), still relies on age old motifs of mostly Roman and Greek goddesses and gods. The problem I see with modernizing magic is that it can't really be turned into a science (I guess), but I wonder if it could be improved in a more broad general way. Maybe magic will naturally adapt to different cultures and become modernized in a sense simply by its function in society. I doubt that magic will ever be engulfed into any real body of science, but that could be good or bad.

I suppose the ambiguous and elusive question I'm interested in discussing is: How do you think that systems of magic will develop as time goes on?


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Expect nothing, or you will get caught up in the future and not pay attention to the present. Just do the practice diligently, do it because you enjoy it, do it because you believe in it. Don't wait for results, don't wait for it to happen.

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fatherjhon
post Aug 17 2012, 04:23 PM
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QUOTE(☞Tomber☜ @ Aug 17 2012, 04:18 PM) *

Anyway my question for everyone is about whether or not magic can be more "modernized", especially in terms of classification and a unified system? Or will magic always be a questionable limb of religion and esoteric philosophy?

But even astrology, which I think has become the most modernized form of magic... still relies on age old motifs of mostly Roman and Greek goddesses and gods. The problem I see with modernizing magic is that it can't really be turned into a science (I guess), but I wonder if it could be improved in a more broad general way. Maybe magic will naturally adapt to different cultures and become modernized in a sense simply by its function in society. I doubt that magic will ever be engulfed into any real body of science, but that could be good or bad.

I suppose the ambiguous and elusive question I'm interested in discussing is: How do you think that systems of magic will develop as time goes on?


Chaos, postmodern, and cyber-magick seem rather modern to my mind, but then that is just me. The issue with truly modernizing magick is that it is really old. It is possible that magick is the oldest technology, came up with back when the first hairy neanderthal started painting what he wanted to happen during the hunt. Over the years people have elaborated the understanding of magick, but it remains a function of the human condition and that does not change too much.

As to how it will develop? It will get a face-lift and new words to describe it to people who do know understand the old ones, sort of what Seth treed to do with Postmodern Magic, but aside from that I do not see it changing much. People keep going back to the old books - Tao te ching, Maitrayani Upanishad, Zohar- because they got something truly right. People don't get things right that often.



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Cosmic consciousness is devoid of diversity; yet the universe of diversity exists in notion....
We contemplate that reality in which everything exists, to which everything belongs,
from which everything has emerged, which is the cause of everything and which is everything....
The light of [this] self-knowledge alone illumines all experiences. It shines by its own light.
This inner light appears to be outside and to illumine external objects.

-Sage Vasishtha

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Bb3
post Aug 23 2012, 05:05 AM
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It's an interesting question but if you ask me it's already happening. However because western (the USA) is afraid of the concept of magic and it's antiquarian roots (IMG:style_emoticons/default/bigwink.gif) the concepts are being reinvented, slowly, but most likely surely. Then again, I guess it all depends on your definition of magic...

For example positive thinking when done with a 'magician's edge' can produce very real physical results. In that we have the development of magic in the modern era, albeit technique is obviously hackneyed at this point in many mainstream cases. I like fatherjohn's point about classics, these classics are important because they came at a time when people knew magic existed. The classics are always worth considering, even classic myths are worth considering, Shakespeare even tells you a thing or two when you read with a good eye.

Like I said positive thinking is kind've, I don't know, leading the way of magic into acceptable and conventional belief and this will most likely only get stronger as psychology actually develops into a science with merit. One progression I think we'll eventually see is that we will find that doctors who employ a high level of positive thinking will be able to better able to tend to their patients.

So yeah, magic will progress, might it be re-titled and then separated into different categories? Maybe, but then wouldn't that just be making magic a science?


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☞Tomber☜
post Aug 24 2012, 07:56 AM
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QUOTE(fatherjhon @ Aug 17 2012, 06:23 PM) *

Chaos, postmodern, and cyber-magick seem rather modern to my mind, but then that is just me. The issue with truly modernizing magick is that it is really old. It is possible that magick is the oldest technology, came up with back when the first hairy neanderthal started painting what he wanted to happen during the hunt. Over the years people have elaborated the understanding of magick, but it remains a function of the human condition and that does not change too much.

As to how it will develop? It will get a face-lift and new words to describe it to people who do know understand the old ones, sort of what Seth treed to do with Postmodern Magic, but aside from that I do not see it changing much. People keep going back to the old books - Tao te ching, Maitrayani Upanishad, Zohar- because they got something truly right. People don't get things right that often.


I see your point. It really does seem to be true that there is an old book that has already "gone there and done that" for just about everything. On a side note, I have been wondering if one of the ways magic could be modernized is by making better translations or adaptions of those classics, like you mentioned. Although I'm familiar with the books you mentioned I really believe that someone would have to actually study the culture if not the language in order to actually let them reach their full potential. Personally I strongly lean towards Western practices and am only casually familiar with Eastern systems like you mentioned.

QUOTE(Bb3 @ Aug 23 2012, 07:05 AM) *

It's an interesting question but if you ask me it's already happening. However because western (the USA) is afraid of the concept of magic and it's antiquarian roots (IMG:style_emoticons/default/bigwink.gif) the concepts are being reinvented, slowly, but most likely surely. Then again, I guess it all depends on your definition of magic...

For example positive thinking when done with a 'magician's edge' can produce very real physical results. In that we have the development of magic in the modern era, albeit technique is obviously hackneyed at this point in many mainstream cases. I like fatherjohn's point about classics, these classics are important because they came at a time when people knew magic existed. The classics are always worth considering, even classic myths are worth considering, Shakespeare even tells you a thing or two when you read with a good eye.

Like I said positive thinking is kind've, I don't know, leading the way of magic into acceptable and conventional belief and this will most likely only get stronger as psychology actually develops into a science with merit. One progression I think we'll eventually see is that we will find that doctors who employ a high level of positive thinking will be able to better able to tend to their patients.

So yeah, magic will progress, might it be re-titled and then separated into different categories? Maybe, but then wouldn't that just be making magic a science?


Yeah I think that's exactly what I was getting at. The antiquarianism, I think, is a barrier for anyone who looks back to the classics for guidance. I think the way magic changes is that it always deals with things that work, but things that cannot presently be explained or made use of by science. So in that sense there was more magic 1000 years ago because science hadn't progressed far enough to clarify reality. But if we still use books from 1000 years ago then I think it would be useful to brush off that layer of antiquarian dust with a little science. The point of doing that wouldn't be to make science take the place of magic, but to increase the validity and work ability of magic. Our (modern) magic should be better than older magic (if the magicians are equal) through this process.

Mainstreaming magic, in my opinion, will never happen in the same way that technology, science, literature and other subjects will never be mainstreamed. Even though people might use technology most people do not understand it. Same with other subjects. People will continue on summing around in ignorance while their overlords (be it CEOs or feudal lords or local government officials) determine what they do and know. If most people can't even understand these things I doubt that people will take it a step farther and actually become active with magic.

I like your point with psychology, where it will develop into a more reputable science. But the reality is that a few genius psychologists had huge successes (you probably know them by name already so I won't write out biographies). I don't think that it's an accident or coincidence that someone like Shakespeare can churn out play after play until they are arguably one of the best things ever written in the English language. Same with psychologists like Erik Erikson or artists like Henry Matisse. My point is that people who seem to understand the underlining fundamentals of a particular subject continue to revolutionize their field of practice with remarkable consistency, whereas most people (even those trained in a particular field of study) fail because superficial knowledge comes through study but fundamental knowledge comes at a much higher price (the price being consistent longterm applied effort and the ability to adapt fundamental beliefs to conform with new experiences). I do not believe that the number (per capita) of people who are dedicated to this kind of effort will rise, even in "scientific" oriented societies.

I might edit/post more later... these are interesting replies and I want to think about them for a while.

This post has been edited by ☞Tomber☜: Aug 24 2012, 07:57 AM


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QUOTE(Vagrant Dreamer @ Jan 30 2013, 02:19 AM) *
Expect nothing, or you will get caught up in the future and not pay attention to the present. Just do the practice diligently, do it because you enjoy it, do it because you believe in it. Don't wait for results, don't wait for it to happen.

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Bb3
post Sep 19 2012, 04:21 AM
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QUOTE(☞Tomber☜ @ Aug 24 2012, 08:56 AM) *

I see your point. It really does seem to be true that there is an old book that has already "gone there and done that" for just about everything. On a side note, I have been wondering if one of the ways magic could be modernized is by making better translations or adaptions of those classics, like you mentioned. Although I'm familiar with the books you mentioned I really believe that someone would have to actually study the culture if not the language in order to actually let them reach their full potential. Personally I strongly lean towards Western practices and am only casually familiar with Eastern systems like you mentioned.
Yeah I think that's exactly what I was getting at. The antiquarianism, I think, is a barrier for anyone who looks back to the classics for guidance. I think the way magic changes is that it always deals with things that work, but things that cannot presently be explained or made use of by science. So in that sense there was more magic 1000 years ago because science hadn't progressed far enough to clarify reality. But if we still use books from 1000 years ago then I think it would be useful to brush off that layer of antiquarian dust with a little science. The point of doing that wouldn't be to make science take the place of magic, but to increase the validity and work ability of magic. Our (modern) magic should be better than older magic (if the magicians are equal) through this process.


'better' is a pretty tough word, hopefully more refined though.

QUOTE(☞Tomber☜ @ Aug 24 2012, 08:56 AM) *

Mainstreaming magic, in my opinion, will never happen in the same way that technology, science, literature and other subjects will never be mainstreamed. Even though people might use technology most people do not understand it. Same with other subjects. People will continue on summing around in ignorance while their overlords (be it CEOs or feudal lords or local government officials) determine what they do and know. If most people can't even understand these things I doubt that people will take it a step farther and actually become active with magic.


This all depends on pop culture, in the fifites, sixties, even seventies it was all about writers and readers, literature was very well known. Nowadays musicians and hollywood actors get the hype. In France, it's my understanding that chefs are celebrities. Perhaps in twenty years scientists will be the most famous people.

QUOTE(☞Tomber☜ @ Aug 24 2012, 08:56 AM) *

I like your point with psychology, where it will develop into a more reputable science. But the reality is that a few genius psychologists had huge successes (you probably know them by name already so I won't write out biographies). I don't think that it's an accident or coincidence that someone like Shakespeare can churn out play after play until they are arguably one of the best things ever written in the English language. Same with psychologists like Erik Erikson or artists like Henry Matisse. My point is that people who seem to understand the underlining fundamentals of a particular subject continue to revolutionize their field of practice with remarkable consistency, whereas most people (even those trained in a particular field of study) fail because superficial knowledge comes through study but fundamental knowledge comes at a much higher price (the price being consistent longterm applied effort and the ability to adapt fundamental beliefs to conform with new experiences). I do not believe that the number (per capita) of people who are dedicated to this kind of effort will rise, even in "scientific" oriented societies.



Well, the problem I think I have with this idea is that it seems to say that we can ever chain people such as Shakespeare. What I mean is that some people just excel despite any and all circumstances. If it's a scientific world then perhaps Shakespeare would free it, who really knows. Does science destroy creativity? Yeah, just ask the Chinese, who even now are stealing American business strategies and thought processes. I actually think the standing of magic in modern society is doing pretty good.

This post has been edited by Bb3: Sep 19 2012, 04:27 AM


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Mchawi
post Sep 27 2012, 11:37 AM
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Nah, its odd that there are places you can go to study/practice all kinds of mystical relationships to the universe from Yoga, to Taoism, QBL and others yet if within these settings someone were to mention "magick" or worse, terms such as 'witchcraft, wizardry/sorcery' you'd get strange looks and likely be thrown out. Christianity and later Science has done well to put the hurts on western relations to spirituality, not to mention others it has been allowed to effect/impact. Magick now has the tarnish of being left handed, hardly associated with enlightenment, speaks of deception and trickery through stage show practitioners such as Derren Brown so people are weary of it and many westerners turn to eastern occult practices in its place. This same rigid fear of a cultures own philosophy has been handed down to others where Christianity/Westernization took hold, in my country you could again, get away with practicing yoga or chi gong but speak of the cultures native philosophy and outlook on the world and doors close.

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Bb3
post Dec 26 2012, 05:47 AM
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MC i luv you 100 percent though i disagree. This is no time, this is no place to leave love lost about a word. This, This is what I know you mean and it's about simplicity: You know what (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif) That's all that matters as far as I know. If one wants more then there
a single tightly wrapped appetite.

This post has been edited by Bb3: Dec 26 2012, 05:49 AM


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