Skeptical Beginner

By Bill Eichman | May 26, 2002

From: wce[at]hogbbs[dot]scol[dot]pa[dot]us (Bill Eichman)
Newsgroups: alt.magick
Subject: “Sending Magickal Experiments”
Date: Sun, 26 Dec 93 22:00:22 EST

<< What type of magickal works or experimental description are you looking for? >>

<< I was referring to things that could cause some kind of measurable change. We had a few folks claiming they could use magick for TK and the like. (They couldn’t give me an experiment to verify.) >>

Many beginners make this fundamental mistake– they do some rituals or practices and notice odd coincidences. From this they conclude that they are able to “cause” such coincidences. A more advanced practitioner has a somewhat different view– they think of themselves as “participating in the synchronicitious process of coincidence”, without egoically assuming that they are the cause of said coincidence.

You’ll get no-one to offer you valid experimental evidence of magick, except for “psychological” effects. Some advanced practitioners could offer you “statistical” experimental evidence– but why should they?

Magick is ‘really’ neuroscience and biology. The hooky-spooky stuff is pure crap, except for the .005% that isn’t.

<< What about the differences between the way a beginner and an experienced practitioner would respond to this ‘question’ or challenge. >>

<< Well, what about that difference? I’ve gotten email from a few beginners who basically say, ‘We’re not worthy!’ — That seems to be the beginners’ only response. A few more advanced people have sent me magical experiments. I think two or three– a truly underwhelming response. >>

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No genuinely advanced practitioner would “send you a magical experiment”. Your challenge is mildly interesting, but it’s form is nonsensical. A person can’t move from the state of being a naive beginner to the state of being a beginning practitioner without coming up with an answer to the questions you posed– but asking the net to “send you magical experiments” sure as hell isn’t going to give you that answer.

Do the practices, and observe the changes that occur in yourself. That’s the bottom line– nothing else will do. No amount of reading, no amount of philosophizing, and no amount of bullshit gabfest on the net will give you real data on whether or not this stuff called “magick” has any validity.

<< I have a feeling that I’m missing the point of your post. Could you elaborate? Are you saying that magick is not meant to have reproducible experiments? >>

I’m saying that as you are starting out with a naive and superstitious beginner’s definition of magick, your challenge is nonsensical. Interesting, because you seem to be resisting swallowing the crap that everyone else is swallowing, but still preposterous, based as it is on a foolish view of what magick is supposed to be…

Magick is quite reproducible. But you know what they say. You can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. Or is it garbage in, garbage out? Whatever, one of those two should cover it.

Trust nothing. Do the practices.

Later, Bill

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wce@hogbbs.scol.pa.us
Bill Eichman, P.O. Box 734, State College, Pa. 16804-0734
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