Futhark Village

Yes, There Are Rules in Magick

CW: Suicide, politics, economics

A disclaimer before you begin reading: Most ceremonial magicians and all Republicans will disagree with nearly everything I say in this article. That is okay, and in fact is kind of the point.

There is a saying that I keep seeing bandied about on the interwebs: “There are no rules in magick.” This is wrong on pretty much every level.

First, there are moral rules in magick. If you wouldn’t do it with an oil lamp, don’t do it with your magic. For instance, if you wouldn’t smash an oil lamp over someone’s head, don’t smash them over the head with curse magic. If you wouldn’t burn their heart out with an oil lamp, don’t burn their heart out with a love spell.

Second, there are even rules of how magick works. The reason that we keep saying, “There are no rules in magick” is because everyone’s magick works differently. I am going to describe how I perceived different peoples’ magick when I first started, then I am going to describe how my own magick works.

When I first started on the pagan path, I saw the auras of the powerful magical practitioners around me. One was like a dark green stone surrounding him, another was like a bright orange cloud around her, a third was like purple light radiating out from her. Those three were neo-pagans of some flavor or another. Then I met a Jewish Qabalist, whose magic was not colorful, but was instead like the waves of heat that radiate off of concrete in the summer. (I got a headache working with her magick.)

Each of them taught me different things along my path, and showed me how to perform different kinds of spells and rituals. Some worked better for me than others, even though everything they showed me worked just fine for them. I thought at first that it was because I was doing something wrong, but it wasn’t.

The reasons that some spells didn’t work for me is that everyone’s magick is different. Some people work through gods or totems or ancestors. Some people work through sacred geometries or sacred languages. But any of these are just aesthetics. They are the foci of the true magick, which comes from within.

When I am doing my own magic, I know that any sufficiently powerful spell will have a cost. I often don’t know what that cost will be, but I have created some powerful effects at the expense of a little bit of personal sacrifice.

When I decided that I wanted to buy a house, I did some money magick. Then I was in a motorcycle accident that incapacitated me for 6 months, to the point that I couldn’t walk, sword-fight, or drive a car. Now, whenever someone talks about money magick near me, my hip twinges in the memory of my money magick. But you know what? I bought a house. I got the money from the insurance settlement, which was more than enough for the down payment.

When someone I cared about was about to commit suicide, I did magick to keep them alive. I don’t know how I knew it, but I knew that the cost would be that Donald Trump would win the election. I didn’t want it to be true, but it was. The fact that a neo-Nazi fascist became president was partly my fault, because of magic I did to keep someone alive.

But that isn’t how it works for everyone. Some people can’t get the big effects at all, and some can do it without sacrifice, or at least not like what happens to me. And that’s fine. We are all different.

So yes, there are rules in magick. Be careful.