Magick

Practical magick.

Necromancy in the digital age

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Skeleton, photo by Kevin DooleyWhat comes to mind when you hear the word necromancy? Do you think of ghoulishly gruesome grave robbing under the light of the full moon? Do you picture only sinister sorts enslaving the deceased and making them do their bidding? Well if so, then you only know of the sordid past of the ancient practice known as necromancy. But what of this arcane art in these modern times? Do people still revere and utilize the death current in occult operations? They most certainly do. While necromancy does indeed have roots in many ancient cultures, this sector of the occult sciences is far from dead. Read More

How to read inverted tarot cards

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Tarot, photo by aquarian_insightA card is considered to be inverted or reversed when it is placed in a reversed position. If, for example, the card is placed vertically, its top edge will face the bottom of the spread. The card is read normally as part of the spread but carries an altered meaning.The use of inverted tarot cards may seem intimidating, but they are not inherently bad. They simply represent a counterpoint to each card's standard meanings. Consider the balanced energies of the yin and yang: each exists as a reflection of the other. There are those who choose not to make use of inverted cards. The introduction of any negativity to a reading is something they would prefer to avoid.

Why use inverted cards?

Inverted cards are a useful tool for understanding the context of a card's position in the spread. Contrasting the inverted cards with their conventional counterparts can help understand the tone of the reading. Read More

Depression, the dark night of the soul and magick

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The dark night of the soul, photo by Marko MiloševićI have had some interesting conversations with some insightful magicians, discussing the phenomenon of the dark night of the soul, and the feelings of desolation, despair and deep depression which can occur to anyone who is following the initiatory path of magick. There seems to be consensus that all magicians at some point retire from the world (and, in a sense, renounce it) to undergo the mystical rigors of the dark night of the soul while seeking union with the One.Strangely, I seem to be one of the few who takes issue with this. I think that it has more to do with a mystical approach to the godhead than a magical approach, and there are also the issues of chronic or situational depression, isolation and despair that have really nothing to do with spiritual ascension. In clinical depression, removing oneself from the world is a common symptom, and strong feelings are often replaced with a feeling of numbness, stasis or apathy.The real question then, is whether or not mystics and magicians experience the iconic dark night of the soul in the same way. Read More

How do you build self-discipline?

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Spiral Nature Letters, Mailbox background by RaSeLaSeD - Il Penguino, with additional work by Psyche This question also came in via our newsletter, where we ask, what's the one thing you're struggling with in your practice?
If I have to list one thing that I was struggling with, I would probably have to list discipline (or focus). Life is hectic and there is tremendous amount of info coming down the pike to sort through every day.--Unfocused
This is something I can definitely relate to -- I'm sure most of us can! Life gets busy, whether with school, work, kids, personal projects or all of the above -- it can be difficult to carve out time to practice.But it's simple really, all you have to do is, you know, do it.Easy peasy, right? You get excited, pumped, start getting really into it. You do all the things. You're great! Centred, perfect, at the top of the world!Until…you slip. And feel crappy because you feel like you can't cut it, and beat yourself up over it. Which leads to avoidance. Which leads to more failure.Aleister Crowley said that 90% of Thelema is self-discipline, and that applies to magical practice too. Here are a few things to think about to help you maintain momentum:Read More

The poetics of love spells

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Love poetry, photo by Goleudy"Clear off your desk," she said.I was in the office of my college newspaper finishing up an article. Earlier that day, my friend attended a poetry reading where I read a sonnet I had specifically written for her. She held a copy of it now.My editor returned earlier than expected and caught us doing a different kind of work at my desk.It was then I realized that I could seduce with a sonnet. That I didn’t want to be someone else’s muse. And that Yeats was right—writing was indeed a form of magick. I wanted to be the magician. Read More

Are you ready for spellwork?

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Spiral Nature Letters, Mailbox background by RaSeLaSeD - Il Penguino, with additional work by Psyche Spiral Nature often receives letters from our readers looking for more information on certain subjects, or sometimes even for a place to begin. This query came in via our newsletter:
At this point, my main struggle is how to know when you are ready for spellcraft. I focus on the outcome, meditate on the process needed for the result, proceed accordingly, and then don't see any results in a timely manner. I don't expect instantaneous results, but I do expect to see results within a month. I do not accept that no result is an answer in itself so what must I do to ensure the outcome?--Ready or Not
Well, Ready or Not, it depends, but ultimately, I would say that if you're asking this question, you're probably ready. Read More

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