Magic: Thoughts From Plato & Manly P. Hall To Modern Day Scientists – Is “Magic” Real?
The Concept of 'magic' has been written about and explored for thousands of years.
It's always been a large part of history and ancient mysticism, and today, "magical" concepts are being explored by science, mostly in the form of parapsychology. Are there concepts of our reality we have yet to understand? Are there concepts we turn away from that have ample evidence, but simply push the boundaries of the mind a little too far to accept? Perhaps things are changing “The underlying, primary psychic reality is so inconceivably complex that it can be grasped only at the farthest reach of intuition, and then but very dimly. That is why it needs symbols.” – Carl Jung What is ceremonial magic? The works of multiple scholars, from Plato to Manly P. Hall and further down the line, suggest it is essentially the use of rituals and techniques to invoke and control “spirits” or lifeforms that could be existing within other dimensions or worlds. For example, according to Hall, “a magician, enveloped in sanctified vestments and carrying a wand inscribed with hieroglyphic figures, could by the power vested in certain words and symbols control the invisible inhabitants of the elements and of the astral world. While the elaborate ceremonial magic of antiquity was not necessarily evil, there arose from its perversion several false schools of sorcery, or black magic.” (source) Yet if we examine the works of Plato, we see he specifically condemns, both in the Laws and in the Republic, the idea that “gods” can be influenced by the performance of certain rituals — called “necromancy” or “magical attack.” He believed those who try to control the spirit world should be penalized. (source) Socrates, about whom Plato wrote much, also spoke of an entity that guided him. It was never given a name, but references to it ranged from daemon to daimon. Socrates believed this entity was a gift, and manifested itself in the form of the voice within, something we all possess. His communication with this entity was actually used as one of the charges against him when he was put to death. Socrates believed it to be a link between mortal man and God. Socrates seems to be an exception when it comes to using these concepts for perverse reasons, and, as Hall points out, he provided evidence that “the intellectual and moral status of the magician has much to do with the type of elemental he is capable of invoking. But even the daemon of Socrates deserted the philosopher when the sentence of death was passed.” (source) He was put to death for “corrupting the youth” and spreading “false” information amongst the people, but looking back, he seems to be a figure more like our modern day revolutionaries than a malevolent influence, put to death for exposing the aristocracy’s secrets and encouraging people to question the true nature of reality, to question the doctrine that had been provided to the masses by those in power.
There are also native records containing abundant evidence that the civilizations of Central and South America were heavily involved in these types of arts, both black and white magics. This is well documented in the Popuol Vuh. If such information is true, it’s hardly surprising. Human beings have always been subject to the lure of power, driven by their ego, greed, and shortsightedness. It’s disconcerting to imagine this power of working with the spirit world in the hands of those who would use it for their own reasons, taken by the power of black magic. Fast forward to our modern day, and you have stories like that of Dr. Johannes Faust. Through his study of magic, he was able to conjure up an extra-dimensional who served him for many years is several different ways.
There is even an excerpt from The Book of Dr. Faust, Wittenberg, 1524 describing his experience. (source) Napoleon Bonaparte, the French military and political leader, is another example. He used to tell of a “Little Red Man of Destiny,” a ‘spirit’ that appeared at a Royal Palace. Apparently when something important was happening, he would appear. This man, and what others now consider to be silly superstitions and folklore beliefs, genuinely influenced Napoleon and his actions and guided his campaigns. (source) According to Hall, The Little Red Man of Destiny is an example “of the disastrous results of permitting elemental beings to dictate the course of human procedure.” (source) Phenomena like these appear in various cultures during different time periods all throughout human history, so what makes us think these practices have stopped today? There is even a modus operandi for the invocation of spirits in various texts, one being The Complete Book of Magic Science that, according to Hall, was first published in the original British Museum. This is also mentioned by other studies of occult philosophy, like Francis Barret in his Magus, where he describes the use of symbols and more things relating to the occult. Living creatures existing in a world we cannot perceive have been the subject of lore dating back countless years. It’s embedded in the stories and passed down orally, and written about in multiple religious texts like the Bible and the Quran. I am not referring to extraterrestrial beings in this case, but rather to beings existing in realms indistinguishable to our senses. A distinction is made early in the article about black magic and white magic. Basically, black magic is the process of using entities to accomplish a goal through ceremonial magic. Hall writes: By means of the secret processes of ceremonial magic it is possible to contact these invisible creatures and gain their help in some human undertaking. Good spirits willingly lend their assistance to any worthy enterprise, but evil spirits serve only those who live to pervert and destroy. . . .
The most dangerous form of black magic is the scientific perversion of occult power for the gratification of personal desire. (source) According to scholars of various philosophies, there occurred, long ago, a systematic destruction of all keys to wisdom, so that no one else could have access to the knowledge. Whoever did it completely inverted the rituals of the ancient mysteries while claiming to preserve them, believing what they did was the right thing to do. Magic also uses symbols and sacred geometry. Black magic, on the other hand, uses inverted symbolism, taking pure symbols with noble meanings and perverting them. Inverted symbolism seems to be the way to invoke spirits for malevolent purposes. “They mutilated the rituals of the Mysteries while professing to preserve them, so that even though the neophyte passed through the degrees (Free-Masonry) he could not secure the knowledge to which he was entitled. Idolatry was introduced by encouraging the worship of the images which in the beginning the wise had erected solely as symbols for study and meditation. False interpretations were given to the emblems and figures of the Mysteries, and elaborate theologies were created to confuse the minds of their devotees. ” (1) It appears there were many black magicians throughout history who strayed from the noble concepts that underly the core of spirituality and working with the spirit world. White magic, on the other hand, deals with the noble, the morally pure, and cannot be used to accomplish selfish ends. Ego, greed, and personal desire have no place in white magic. I agree with Socrates that the concepts of white magic exist within all of us and can be used as powerful tools of manifestation, provided one is pure in their heart and intention. It’s simple, and cannot be used as a means to an end, or to fulfil a specific personal desire. Proponents of what we now call ‘magic’ include nearly all ancient literature from all parts of the world, from the Vedic texts and the yoga sutras, all the way to Moses, Jesus, Milarepa and Mohammed. Donald Lopez Jr., a professor of Buddhist and Tibetan Studies and the University of Michigan provides a great example in describing the Buddha: With this enlightenment, he was believed to possess all manner of supernormal powers, including full knowledge of each of his own past lives and those of other beings, the ability to know others’ thoughts, the ability to create doubles of himself, the ability to rise into the air and simultaneously shoot fire and water from his body...Although he passed into nirvana at the age of eighty-one, he could have lived “for an aeon or until the end of the aeon” if only he had been asked to do so. (source) The crazy thing is there are also modern day examples, but they mostly come from the black budget government programs. In 2016, I published a well-sourced article providing multiple examples from a CIA document that confirms the existence of humans with ‘special abilities’ who are able to do ‘impossible’ things. It’s titled “Research into Paranormal Ability To Break Through Spatial Barriers.” and it outlines how documented cases of children and adults who have the ability to teleport small objects from one location to another, using their mind. Why would the CIA archive this document? The study was done under controlled conditions. Dean Radin, chief scientist at the Institute of Noetic Sciences, has published a book called “Real Magic.” It has received praise from multiple scientists, including Nobel Laureates. Dr. Carl Jung once stated, “I shall not commit the fashionable stupidity of regarding everything I cannot explain as a fraud.” This is something we should all hold in our minds as we examine this or other claims that are not part of our current perception.
The amount of statistically significant results when it comes to this reality, usually dubbed as “parapsychology,” is very significant. We are talking about hundreds, if not thousands of studies that have been conducted worldwide for decades.
There seems to be a deep concern that the whole field will be tarnished by studying a phenomenon that is tainted by its association with superstition, spiritualism and magic. Protecting against this possibility sometimes seems more important than encouraging scientific exploration or protecting academic freedom. But this may be changing. —Cassandra Vieten, PhD and President/CEO at the Institute of Noetic Sciences (source) A lot of the statistical results for parapsychology are just as strong, if not in some cases more significant, than a lot of the results which emerge from hard sciences, like physics and mechanical engineering.
The Department of Defense has stated that results in this area are a clear sign that these phenomena are real, despite the fact that they are still somewhat unexplainable. As far back as 1999, a statistics professor even published a paper showing the results dealing with parapsychology and mind-body connection are a lot stronger than the results used to approve some of our medications. That study was done by Dr. Jessica Utts, as statistics professor in California who had this to say about Radin’s book: “Real Magic illustrates the limitations of 20th century science and proposes a more comprehensive view that incorporates ideas that have been associated with magic throughout the ages. Blending history, humor, and plausible hypotheses, Dean Radin illustrates that there is a staggering amount of evidence for a broader view of science that offers hope for the future of humanity.” Another review: “A thought-provoking book.
The author makes a convincing case for the reality and significance of magic.” —Brian Josephson, Nobel Laureate in Physics and Emeritus Professor of Physics, University of Cambridge Today, hundreds of scientists are coming together to emphasize that matter is not the only reality.
They’ve created a manifesto, and you can find links and access more information about this initiative, which started a few years ago, in an article we published here. “Some scientists are confident that we already know what is and is not possible. But the truth is that science is very much in its infancy. To advance our understanding requires bold excursions into domains some might consider heretical, including esoteric legends about magic that have persisted for thousands of years. This is what Dean Radin sets out to do with Real Magic. In my judgment, it succeeds in blazing new trails. Well worth the read.” — Kary Mullis PhD, Nobel Laureate (Chemistry) else.
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