When I was in high school I took several science classes that included performing experiments. It’s a basic premise of science that under the same conditions, your experiments should show the same results. For example, if you fill a test tube with oxygen, then insert a lit match into the test tube, the flame should become brighter. If you perform the experiment and the flame goes out, it’s assumed that you, the scientist, did something wrong.
I believe that magick is (or should be considered) an experimental science. Curiously, most people look at a magickian, and if his or her magick didn’t work, rather than assume that the magickian/scientist did something wrong, they automatically assume that magick doesn’t work.
Do you see this split? In one case, if Y doesn’t happen when you perform X, the practitioner is at fault. In another case, if Y doesn’t happen when you perform X, the entire practice is at fault.
In my opinion, though, part of the responsibility for this observation justifiably falls on some magickians. Many magickians look at a modern or classic book on magick and accept everything in it as being a law that must not be challenged. This changes magick from being a science to being a type of religion, and therefore should be judged differently than science.
There is a saying that doing the same thing and expecting a different result is a sign of insanity. An example of this would be repeatedly hitting yourself on the head with a hammer and expecting that it won’t hurt the next time.
Therefore, as an act of sanity, I would suggest that every book on magick should be looked at as a guideline and not a commandment set in stone. Guidelines are great. They are places to start and are useful because other people have had success with them. Try them out. If they work for you continue to use them. If they don’t work for you, act like a scientist. Modify one aspect of the magick at a time and see what happens. Record the results in a journal or magickal diary.
With dedication you will have your own book of magick that will be highly successfulâ€”for you. It may not work for others.
A Word of Warning
When learning magick, there are three things you need to do to achieve success:
practice, practice, practice.
When using a computer to keep your magickal diary or journal there are also three things you need to do to achieve success:
backup, backup, backup.
Where to Start
Today, so many people are interested in learning magick, but there are relatively few trainers or schools for learning the science. Therefore, if you want to learn the science of magick, a great place to begin is with books. Here are some you might find helpful:
and of course, my favorite: