Old magic versus new magic

Morgan le Fay, by Frederick Sandys

Recently I received an enquiry from a seeker in Eastern Europe, where much of the traditional magical practices and folklore were wiped out under Communism. There are many seekers in the area, but not many experienced practitioners. The seeker was especially interested in older forms of magic, and asked how to tell the difference between fake and real techniques. [Read more...]

Drugs: it’s all about the context

Two Crow Indians sitting on the ground smoking a peace pipe.

Drugs and other mind-altering substances have been used in a sacred context for millennia. It is only when drug use is taken out of this sacramental and communal context that it becomes a vice. If a drug is taken to alter one’s consciousness for a sacred purpose – to obtain information or abilities inaccessible to normal consciousness – then it is a rare occurrence, and for a good reason: in the service of one’s community. [Read more...]

Thought forms

Georg von Rosen - Oden som vandringsman, 1886 (Odin, the Wanderer)

One aspect of deities seems to be thought-forms. That is not to say that deities are merely thought-forms, but that part of the way we interact with them seems to be through our internal image of what they are like. The more people carry an internal image of that deity around in their heads, the easier it is to visualise them. [Read more...]

Pathways in Modern Western Magic (Review)

Pathways in Modern Western Magic

Pathways in Modern Western Magic has the most to offer to a reader who is just beginning a formal academic study of Western magic. When it broaches less-treated topics of study and connects its subject matter to broader discussions in religious studies, however, it is also potentially valuable for established scholars of esotericism or contemporary Paganism. [Read more...]

What is magic and how does it work?

Circe Invidiosa by John William Waterhouse

A friend on Facebook asked, how does magic work? My immediate response to this was, it depends what you mean by magic. [Read more...]

Ritual, liturgy, and worship

Ritual

There are several different modes of ritual, which have different meanings and purposes. When writing rituals, you can deliberately make use of these different modes to create a different mood, depending on the purpose of your ritual. Sometimes a ritual can include more than one of these modes.
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