Over the years I have contemplated writing a book about the various insights I have had, and the techniques of magic that I have learnt. However, it has become my belief that the world doesn’t need another book about Magic. Magic is something that must be lived and experienced, not merely read and talked about. On the other hand, how does someone go about learning about magic without learning from someone else who has knowledge of, and experience with magic? It is with this in mind that I have decided to offer a basic, structured course to teach some fundamental aspects of magic. I like a simple approach, one that looks at principles and techniques. I like to keep the philosophy simple and not get lost in cultural beliefs, teachings, and practices, as I believe that the core principles are the same despite the outward expressions. What you will get out of this course is really up to you. Your commitment to your own personal evolution and willingness to learn and develop your magical skills is all that is important. This course is designed to encourage you to practice various techniques to aid in your magical development and understanding. Practicing magic is even more essential than understanding the philosophy ‘correctly’, as it is through the experiences that growth and true wisdom and understanding comes. Your personal philosophy will develop organically, growing from your practices and experiences. While this course is structured, it is not intended to be a comprehensive path to enlightenment or magical attainment. There are no grade rituals that claim you have reached a certain level of understanding and being (symbolically or otherwise). This course is a starting point only, as magical advancement is a continuous process rather than having an endpoint that can be achieved. You may reach various peaks and plateaus, but there will always be somewhere new to explore, a greater quest to undertake, and a deeper understanding to develop. It is far more important that you learn to think for yourself, and develop an instinctive ‘inner knowing’ about what is right and appropriate for you in any given moment. Sticking slavishly to accept dogma and beliefs about magic and the nature of reality is not going to reveal any genuine secrets to you. The secrets of magic are to be unlocked by each individual ‘seeker after the truth’. They cannot be shared and revealed, only gained through experience, reflection, and the understanding and ‘inner knowing’ that comes from actively participating in your own magical development. The key to this brief course, and the entire magical world view, is summed up in the ancient words: Know Thyself.
- Introduction & Beliefs 1
- The Magic Mirror
- Imagination & Will
- Inner Work
- Higher Self
- Beliefs 2
- Review and Feedback
The Most Important Book
Of all the books recommended on the subject of magical training and development, I suggest that there is only one that is essential. This is a book that you create yourself, to document your progress and understanding; it is a journal (diary). Keeping a journal allows you to record your thoughts and experiences, and can be considered a way of grounding your experiences by recording them in the physical. In the future you can read through your journal and look at what you believed and understood at that moment in time. You may observe patterns in your thoughts and actions, and this can give you an opportunity to consider whether these patterns are beneficial to your development or whether they are limiting you and need to be overcome. There are no concrete rules for journal writing. Below are some things to consider when keeping a journal:
- Consider keeping a hand-written journal using pen (or pencil) and paper (e.g. a notebook). The process of writing is less mechanical than typing on a computer.
- Write for yourself. You are not completing homework to keep a teacher happy, so write honestly and openly about your thoughts, feelings, and experiences.
- Focus on feelings. Take note of your feelings and emotions as you study, both in your day-to-day life, as well as during magical practices.
- Write freely. Don’t be concerned about spelling mistakes, correct grammar, appropriate language, or the ‘right way’ of keeping a journal.
- Write poetry, draw pictures, diagrams, mind maps, fictional stories, or whatever else feels right for you to add.
- If you recall dreams, then record them. If you recall multiple dreams but don’t have the time to record them all, focus on the one that seemed most important or powerful, and write about it in as much detail as possible.
- Write down any questions you have relating to magic and self growth.
- From time to time, read over your journal and reflect on patterns you see in your thoughts and actions. If you’ve written down questions, reflect on the questions and consider if you’ve discovered an answer for yourself yet.
- Try to commit some time each day to writing in your journal. A few minutes a day can be more valuable than a few hours once per week or month.
- Occasionally, if you feel inspired, spend additional time writing down your thoughts and feelings about various concepts you’ve come across – for example after completing the exercises contained in this course, or any additional exercises you experiment with.
Last modified: 09 August 2014