Wednesday, November 17, 2010

What Is the Make And Model Of Your Magic?

Last week while driving to work I quite unexpectedly took notice of the many vehicles that shared the same road as me. I wondered what each of the many different vehicles said about the way their owners felt about themselves. Did that sturdy flatbed truck indicate that its owner feels (or wants to be perceived as) rugged? Did that outrageously expensive vehicle indicate that its owner feels (or wants to be perceived as) financially successful? Did that sleek speed demon indicate that its owner feels (or wants to be perceived as) powerful? In all honesty I do not know what (if any) feelings those objects speeding past me reflected from their owners. I do know from experience, however, that the vehicle one drives can be a window to the soul. When I was a teen a low riding Firebird would have said it all for me. In my case, however, owning a Firebird would not have said much about how I felt about myself. It would have spoken a great deal about how I wanted others to see me, however. Unfortunately (or fortunately), I could not afford to own that tiny bit of heaven and had to settle for a Plymouth Duster. While my Plymouth Duster did not speak as eloquently to others as I imagined a Firebird would have, it did say enough about me to suffice.

Anyway, while pondering the many vehicles speeding by and the personalities they may or may not reflect, I asked myself what if anything my vehicle reflected about me. While my Toyota Highlander may say a great deal about me to others, I quickly realized that I was not intentionally projecting anything through it to others. Feelings/thoughts about myself and my vehicle remained separate.

As so often happens nowadays when I think, my thoughts eventually turned to my magical practices and I asked myself if the practices I am engaged in are in any way connected to my feelings about myself or a need to present myself to others in a particular fashion. What I learned is that my current magical pursuits are much akin to my Highlander. My magical practices and how I feel about myself appear to be like water and oil. Oddly, this does not seem to be the case when I consider “demon” work. I have no interest in working with “demons.” However, I realize that the idea of working with “demons” does indeed invoke feelings of extraordinariness and power within me. What is more, I can see myself using “demon” work to project these feelings outward to demonstrate just how extraordinary and powerful I am.

So, my question to you is…”Are your magical practices and your feelings/thoughts about yourself intertwined and do you use those practices in a way that projects those thoughts/feelings to others?” As a follow-up I would ask…”Is using your magic to cause others to see you as you wish to be seen something negative?” I think it can be if you are lying to yourself as to why you are engaged in your practices or your particular tradition. If you are engaged with practices or a tradition in order to paint some picture of yourself in the eyes of others while telling yourself that you do so for other reasons, then you cheat yourself of the true benefits of working with those practices or that tradition.


Pallas Renatus said...

This is one of the reasons I generally don't get involved in the "pagan community" (offline, anyway). In my (limited) experience, it seemed that more often than not people spent the majority of their time making sure other people saw their magic in a certain way, rather than practicing a magic that was truly "theirs".

PhoenixAngel said...

Good Post! I can relate to your comments in that, yes, I am trying to reinvent myself. I am trying to make myself a different person than I was before. My self esteem was very low and now I am trying to change that image.
As far as the projection of an image to others, I am going to stick with who I am. I am new to all of this, I am still learning but I do have an opinion and know my talents. Sometimes it truly feels like I stick out like a sore thumb (for lack of a better phrase) in the magickal community.

Yes, you can truly cheat yourself out of some good solid learning if you lie to yourself.

I drive a Toyota Rav4, you cant get more ubiquitous than that! (Well maybe a Honda)