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Thread: mistakes you have made in magick

  1. #1
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    mistakes you have made in magick

    so i'll start this off. what mistakes in working magic have you made? for me its using my own energy to cast a magic circle. left me feeling like I've had a hangover. what about you?

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    The Gaze of the Abyss B. de Corbin's Avatar
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    Re: mistakes you have made in magick

    I do not generally do what people consider "magic," however, when I have, my biggest mistake has been in believing that there are directions to be followed, rather than things to be discovered.
    Every moment of a life is a horrible tragedy, a slapstick comedy, dark nihilism, golden illumination, or nothing at all; depending on how we write the story we tell ourselves.

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    Kick Ass Little Crow Corvus's Avatar
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    Re: mistakes you have made in magick

    Everyone makes mistakes eventually, especially early on, but continuously and forever also. I have made so many mistakes. Some were big, some were small. I expect to make further magical mistakes in the future.

    Early on when I was learning I didn't take appropriate precautions. I did, and still do, what could be called necromancy, but I was an amateur and few times that went sideways. The worst one was probably when I tried to conjure my grandfather, who I later learned was a violent alcoholic. I felt all sorts of emotions and ended up a mess until I eventually passed out. Then it was a few more days until I realized I needed to "clean up" myself and my place.

    There's plenty of other things like that. Mostly from when I was learning. I had no guidance and a teenager's arrogance. I could do magic, and I still feel it was powerful magic, but it was sloppy spell work. This normally wouldn't be a problem since many acts of magic just fail when they're done badly, but I was drawn to ceremonial magic and the "dark and edgy" parts of witchcraft. I was just knowledgeable enough to make things work and more than stupid enough to make it work badly. I have learned far more than I should have through trial and error. It's possible that instinctively I sought out things that could hurt me, but never too badly, or maybe it was just lucky. In either case I dealt with the consequences of my actions and continued.

    As time went on my intuition and knowledge grew and now I make many fewer mistakes, and none to this degree, but learning is an ongoing process. I have discovered, as Corbin mentions, that there are many ways to do magic and many ways to obtain the same result- there is not one set of directions because magic is not as simple as a single input for a single output. Still, it takes time to find yourself and find what works. Imitation can be a mistake.

    It's interesting where magical mistakes and magical adjacent mistakes interact. Some communities one might find are particularly hex happy, which I've never really understood. Recognize and employ caution around, well, everyone really, but of note here is to have standard magical defenses around other practitioners. It isn't a bad idea to just assume everyone might have magic either since even the untrained can inadvertently turn an evil eye at you. There's more magic than just neopagan magic.

    There's also practical mistakes like "is xyz flammable?" (The answer is yes, unless it's *supposed* to burn) or considering how your spell design works in practice and if what process you're picturing is actually practical, or be very careful not to poison yourself too much with a potion, or simple things like "my hands are too damn cold to be knotting cord at midnight outside on Yule," or any number of other this is a problem to actually do. Like I said I've made a lot of mistakes.
    “They moaned and squealed, and pressed their snouts to the earth. We are sorry, we are sorry.
    Sorry you were caught, I said. Sorry that you thought I was weak, but you were wrong.”
    -Madeline Miller, Circe

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    PF Ordo Hereticus MaskedOne's Avatar
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    Re: mistakes you have made in magick

    I didn't account for the possibility that one of the easiest paths for a spell to take was through pissing me off enough to force a confrontation. It worked out in the end and I got what I wanted but it's not necessarily the best realization that your casting just used you as an instrument.
    "It is not simply enough to know the light…a Jedi must feel the tension between the two sides of the Force…in himself and in the universe."
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    Yoda told stories, and ate, and cried, and laughed: and the Padawans saw that life itself was a lightsaber in his hands; even in the face of treachery and death and hopes gone cold, he burned like a candle in the darkness. Like a star shining in the black eternity of space.

    Yoda: Dark Rendezvous

    "But those men who know anything at all about the Light also know that there is a fierceness to its power, like the bare sword of the law, or the white burning of the sun." Suddenly his voice sounded to Will very strong, and very Welsh. "At the very heart, that is. Other things, like humanity, and mercy, and charity, that most good men hold more precious than all else, they do not come first for the Light. Oh, sometimes they are there; often, indeed. But in the very long run the concern of you people is with the absolute good, ahead of all else..."

    John Rowlands, The Grey King by Susan Cooper

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    Aslan, Prince Caspian by CS Lewis



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    Re: mistakes you have made in magick

    I think I've been rather fortunate in that I haven't really had many experiences that I would consider the result of a mistake in craft work. Just some trial and error as to what works best in certain cases, a few interpretation hiccups that slowed things down. I think one thing I've encountered a lot in folk magic (and herbalism) is determining the proper ingredients in a few cases. For example, sometimes completely different plants with completely different purposes will share a common name. So then you have to figure out the region / locale the source likely originated and what plant would most likely have been referenced for that area and for that purpose. Or a reference will use a common name that is obscure or no longer in use so it takes a bit of legwork to find out what plant its actually referring to.

    I don't do ceremonial magic or anything dealing with Angels, demons and such, so in regards to entities and such that I do work with... Its easier to appease a slighted land spirit than it is to back track on an issue with a demon. And I've always been very "go with your gut", so if my intuition is giving me pause, I heed it. I won't just push forward with a task if something feels off. So in that way I've managed to avoid a few snafus and serious mistakes.

    Oh! MaskedOne reminded me of a good one... Not being specific enough in a few cases. That is definitely a mistake with inconvenient consequences I've encountered.
    Last edited by ForestSpell; 02 Sep 2021 at 19:09.

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    Re: mistakes you have made in magick

    What my biggest mistake is (at least in my opinion and at this point in time) is similar to B. De Corbin's.
    I was veering away from the messages and directions that I had been getting from spirit about magic from a very young age. I was forgetting their trustworthy guidance up until that point, and in essence, forgetting my path for the sake of another.

    I love knowledge and books and systems, so I'm drawn to learning about "ways" to do magic or to view magic. Thus, when my guides were quiet, or my dreams stopped, etc., I turned to books and relied on those directions laid before me via books that may have not always sung with my truths. So, yeah. My biggest mistake comes from that amnesia.
    Had I had access to magical groups, perhaps I would have been getting lost in degree systems and the like rather than authors and what they put in books.

    But then again, it is thanks to those educational segues that I've realized I can trust myself and my guides, and that I've come to know what I'm drawn to, my likes and dislikes, what's real and what isn't (IMO anyway), and I can now discern thanks to my experiences rather than superstitions. And without that mistake I wouldn't have my relationship with magic that I have now, my very own magic, which I wouldn't trade. It's kind of funny how that works.

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