Magic as a technology

Posted on May 20, 2011
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I tend to approach aspects of magic as a technology and/or a process. I don’t think magic as a whole can be boiled down to a set of tools or processes, but I think the actions can be examined as a process and form of technology, and that there is benefit in doing this. The benefit is the ability to personalize your approach to magic, based off understanding it as a process, and knowing what can be manipulated in that process.

It interests me that I find what I consider to be a willful ignorance on the part of some occultists. There’s this tendency to argue that you don’t need to know how magic works and that examining magic as a technology debases the practice…as if somehow it’s better to not really know or ask how it works. I think such ignorance is wasteful, and of no real value to someone practicing magic.

I don’t think of magic as a science, but I do find value in the process and in understanding what factors will lead to a consistent result. And not surprisingly this has resulted in what I’d consider to be consistent results. Viewing magic as a process and technology doesn’t necessarily take the magic out of magic or the mystical experiences away from it. But what it does do is provide structure for your experiences, as well as a way of recording them. And it is odd that the same proponents that argue that you don’t need to know how magic works, also argue that you need to keep a journal in order to review the magical work you’ve done. If that isn’t examining how magic works, I’m not sure what is, but I will say that knowing how magic works makes your practice a lot more focused.