Well Jason, as usual we’re secretly in sync with each other! In your lastest entry on Magic and Mind and Psychology you discuss the need to not just be magically delicious but to have your shit together too. I just sent an entry to my editor for Week 13 of the New Year, New You: An Experiment in Radical, Magical Transformation on this topic as well. I also discussed that it’s okay to have mostly mundane goals there too. Spooooooooooooooooooky.
But it also made me contemplate why do I do magic and how do I feel about psychology and magic? Because, as Jason said, there are easier ways to get power, prestige, money, love, etc.
From a spellwork perspective, if you are more into “low” magic over “high” magic, you may not truck much with spirits. You may ask God/dess/es or totems or ancestors for help but you may not get into the world of angels and demons and other various spirits. You may just say, God. (Scandalous!) You may . . .and this is where things get touchy . . .not have any significant meditational practice at all. (le gasp!) You may only be minorly concerned with enlightenment or magical powers and personal growth may be something you look at from a mundane perspective primarily.
I just described myself, honestly. But not just me, lots of kitchen witches, hearth witches and hoodoo practitioners as well. Possibly Wiccans (almost none of my sisters have a real steady meditation/power gathering format that they use outside of circle to the best of my knowledge) and ADF Druids (. . .we’re totes supposed to meditate but I have a rudimentary practice at best and I still have my card but no actual dedicants’ book despite the fact that I did cycle two of the dedicants program *and* contributed data to the program but oooooh Jow joins and you just send him a book no questions asked. I’m looking at you, Kirk. Ahem. Anyway it stands to reason that there are many other ADF members who attend their groves faithfully as I do and suck at meditating. Especially since ADF is primarily celebratory, at least in my grove).
I find if you’re not trying to get super into the spirit world, your spells fall under the following categories: love, money, protection, hexing and health. Ta-da! Not everyone is really fantastic at communicating with the spirit world and that’s okay too. It is one aspect of a strong magical practice, but it’s not the only one. Faith can take you a long way along with offerings (especially when you don’t have your hand out). Maybe you have a steady magical practice to get ahead and keep things running smoothly and that’s all you need. Frankly, it’s all I need. And if I never get enlightened or get infinite cosmic powers, I’m really okay with that as well. It’s not really part of my bracket of goals. I don’t need a never ending amount of people attracted to me, I don’t need to be rich, I don’t need a lot of things. I’ve learned from my divorce, mo’ money mo’ problems.
I do magic to (consensually) keep my relationship good, to keep bringing in money with a day job, that I can handle minor problems like a car problem, to keep things smooth in my family, to help me keep making money as a writer and a crafter, to protect my home and occasionally when I’m irritated enough, to smack someone’s ass down. And . . .that’s it. That’s all I need.
Because my magic tends to be more faith based, how it works is less important to me than having it work. Maybe it’s somewhat psychologically based, maybe it’s not. Listen, I get why it’s important. I have fibromyalgia. The way we’re treated varies a lot based on whether that person thinks it’s “all in your head” (psychological) or it’s actual neurological damage (hard science!). But at the end of the day, no one knows for sure yet if fibro is psychological or science based or both and no one knows about magic. But . . .I still have fibro and magic still works. If you ever want to be validated because someone is scoffing at you, offer v. sincerely to do work on their behalf. Because I’ve found that backs that train up real fast. Everyone in my life who has scoffed has also refused to let me do magic on their behalf. Obviously, some part of them believes that I have the power to change their lives in some way. Last I checked, that’s what magic is.