What is Magic?
Imagine that all around you are subtle waves of energy. Like light or air you mostly have tuned it out because it is ever present and it is the source of all things that occur. Keep these subtle forces in mind; see them in your imagination almost like the electromagnetic spectrum of light. Each color is a force that is causing something to occur or be experienced. So, consider times when you feel blessed, lucky, cursed, loved, angry, powerful, smart, brilliant, etc. Each of those times had a particular abundance of a certain subtle force either from planetary, astrological, elemental or from the local astral plane. Rarely does one have moments or days when it is a pure unmingled force affecting you. Even in blissful moments other influences are mingled in that time. Magic is the ability to read the influences present in a situation and then through the activity of imagination and will working with or transforming the influences of the subtle forces to produce a result.
A professional is only as good as their tools. What tools does someone use for magic? Every occult tradition has some system of divination. Tarot cards, Runes, I-Ching, skrying mirrors, and so on. The universal appeal for such items in the use of magic can of course be seen as the curious human mind desiring to know what comes next. The deeper experience of divination tools is that they are truly devices that show what influences are present or will be present in the way of subtle forces, at any given time. They give the astral weather forecast. We will use tarot cards as the example from here on, but just as easily one could use any system of divination which is in truth a map of the spiritual realities and experiences that make up creation. How does a tarot deck reveal the hidden subtle influences? The act of choosing a series of cards to read the situation, because of the impact and the influence of the subtle forces on all things thereby influences the choosing and selection of the cards! So, just like being “lucky” or being “depressed” effects every activity so it seems like you are either lucky at everything or everything is a reminder of your sadness, so do tarot cards pick up this influence and reveal the cards that are influencing the world around you.
How do you use it to work magic?
You have chosen a deck that for you at that moment best speaks to your view of spiritual realities. You chose a spread to read the situation (I can hear the questions now: “What deck do you recommend?” “What spread do you recommend?” my answer to both is it really doesn’t matter as long as it resonates with you. If some other deck or spread comes along that you think is better, use it!) And the influences are now there before you. Imagine these images as windows or doors into the pure subtle forces that are manipulating everything around you. You may step into these gates or windows and allow your imagination to produce the proper symbols into a conscious experience to you. Now you may be thinking, “What if I read the cards and my situation is terrible but the cards all show positive influences?” You did not read it wrong! What happened is that the terrible situation is produced from your reaction to these influences that is not developed, refined or positive. If you are going through a break-up and get a happy love card you will think this is all wrong but it is not the force or card that is wrong but your current mindset that has become opposed to the force. No force in and of itself is bad or good, just like Red is not good or bad just our associations to the color.
Now that you have read your cards and know what influences are present you can now work your magic. Imagine you were about to go on a fantasy adventure into some mystic realm, the cards before you illustrate the setting of your adventure! You must choose based on this story of yours what weapon, what item, power, magic or skill you will bring with you in order to influence the story in your direction. You can use sigils, talismans, other tarot cards, magical tools, words of power, gods, spirits, angels, power animals, elementals, WHATEVER YOU WANT!!! Just step through the gates with your aids or tools and explore your adventure, when things occur that allow you to influence the forces work your magic as a hero or wizard would in a storybook or movie. By changing the influence or the story the subtle forces will change (and so can you) so that your life or current situation changes as well.
Talismans, sigils, spells and tools
What is the purpose of all the ritual extras magicians have, the lists, books, spells and memorizations and so on? Each is a tool that can be used to cause change. Each is like a character in a story that can help, boost, explain, protect and work for and with you. You can have hundreds or just a few. As long as it holds some symbolic meaning it can be effective. Talismans give symbolic pictures that when focused on, and meditated on influence the subtle forces around you to act in accordance with your will and imagination. One can use them as a gateway to enter and explore, a magnet that draws the influence around you or as a tool to enter another image and cause changes there with it. Even just looking at a magical image for a just a few minutes with focus and a receptive mind can be enough to activate the influences it can bring to you! The same can be said for sigils.
The important thing is to have some meaning and to allow your mind to creatively imagine the image. Think of when you look at wood grain on panels or clouds in the sky. Your mind begins to give it a shape and meaning so that it looks like something else altogether. When you can produce that experience with a sigil then you have activated it with the imagination and can then imaginatively work with it as you can with any other tool. In this way an alphabet of desire a collection of sigils is like a personal army at your disposal on the subtle planes.
This is magic. This is one reason why I created my Tumblr account, to create these images and share them with you. Not only is it me acquiring more tools it is also sharing my tools with you!