Use what you got

Posted on May 26, 2011
Filed Under book review, Magic | Leave a Comment

Use what you got. That’s one of my mantras when it comes to magical work, and what it means is use everything at your disposal that helps you accomplish your goal. If you feel fear or worry about a situation where you need a result, then use that worry and fear to push for the result. Don’t suppress it, or try and clear it away. That will make those emotions stronger and will also tell reality you don’t want the result. Make it part of your process, part of the equation that helps you accomplish your goal. Make those emotions your friends, helping you achieve your result, bringing you success because you’ve used them to write large the possibility that will be the new reality, the new you.

Use what you got, because what you have is always a resource. It only becomes a problem if you make it a problem. Knowing how to take your unease and make it your ally is really about learning how to hold on to yourself in the face of resistance and discover what it is you truly value and desire. In knowing that you can make informed choices, and practice magic that is effective because everything you have is turned toward making it work.

Use what you got, because it is what you have…Use all the discord, every thought, every emotion, every fear, worry, and whisper…make it your own, make it your success.

Book Review: Advanced Magick for Beginners (affiliate link) by Alan Chapman

As I read this book, what I found myself thinking was that while I found the exercises useful and some of the author’s points salient to what he was trying to teach, there was also an odd mixture of push button magic (we don’t need to know how it works) and traditional perspectives, which actually in a way fits, but also reveals what I’d consider problematic about this book. There’s a tendency to stick with tried and true in occultism and this book fits that tendency. The decrying of asking how magic works fits with the traditional perspectives the author takes toward evocation and other practices and ironically defeats his criticisms of occult culture, because he ends up embodying what he is critiquing.

Is it a good book? I’d say there is some useful information here, and that an occultist will benefit from exploring the ideas. At the same time, what would be the most useful exercise for this book (and really any other book in general) is to question everything the author says, and also don’t buy the push button, we don’t need to know how it works model. If we don’t need to know why it works, why write a book on the subject?