There is a joke for the digerati that goes:
“There are 10 types of people…
Those who know binary and those who don’t.”
Some of you reading this may get a laugh out of that…well, at least a snicker. The key to understanding it is the concept of “binary.”Binary refers to the number 2 and especially numerical systems that use “base 2.” Our regular counting system is “base 10″ and has ten digits (0â€“9). Base 2 uses only two digits (0 and 1). In base 2, writing “10″ is the same as writing “2″ in our regular base 10 system.
Understanding binary is important for some people today because most computers, at their deepest levels, are binary. Microprocessors that run the computers consist of millions of transistors that, like a switch, can be turned on or off. The “on” state is usually indicated by a “1″ and the off state is indicated by a “0.”
Computers have to use devices called Digital to Analog Converters (or DACs) that translate the binary codes into something we can use. A certain set of binary codes, for example, indicates that a specific tiny area or pixel on your screen is a certain color. There can be millions of pixels on the screen. As you can see, this can get very complex. It’s why computers have to be able to pump out huge amounts of code every second, and why faster computers can get smoother moving images on your screen.
King Kong vs. Velociraptor
The original film, King Kong, used a tedious process known as stop-motion photography. They took a picture of Kong, the animator moved the model a tiny bit, and another picture was taken. This was repeated, often requiring days to produce a few seconds of Kong on film.
In Jurassic Park, the process was all done within computers…but it didn’t look real. The animators looked at films of animals moving and noticed that there was actually a blurring from frame to frame on the film. They duplicated this in the computers (it’s called “motion blur”) and the result was realistically moving dinosaurs.
Binary vs. Analog
This shows the difference between a belief system that I have long denounced. Binary is “either-or” thinking. Many people think in these terms. Either you are one way or you are the opposite. There is no in-between. Humans, however, are not binary. We are analog. There is a long path or continuum between binary choices. It’s a natural “motion blur.” I would say it is a mistake to limit ourselves to either-or binary thinking. And this is what happens all too often with magick.
Most people think that they will design and set up a ritual, and all that work is not magickal. I would respectfully disagree. I have repeatedly stated that magick is going on 24/7. It is taking place all the time. All of that structured work to design a ritual is magickal by itself. I have often heard from people who say something like “I planned out an entire ritual to obtain X and I was going to do the magick on the weekend. But before I could perform the ritual, I got what I wanted.” Sometimes, they will ask how they were able to obtain their magickal goal without doing the magick. What I explain is that all the work done in the planning, as well as the mental work in thinking about the ritual, was the magick. The only thing that wasn’t done was the performance of a formal ritual.
“Magick isn’t something you do.
Magick is something you are.”
I have written this and stated it many times. Lots of people don’t “get” it. They don’t get that magick happens all the time. That’s why people who aren’t magicians (either consciously or unconsciously) rarely achieve their goals. They frequently think, act, and do things that are contrary to their stated desires. They literally do magick (unknowingly) to counter their goals. They may not be aware of it, but that doesn’t stop the unwanted results from taking place.
When magicians understand this, the reasons for various phenomena become obvious. Sometimes, however, it’s not obvious. In the wonderful Rune Soup blog, Gordon posts about this. He calls this type of phenomenon “Sigil Bleed.” Â That is, a sigil (a type of talisman that I describe in Modern Magick and in Modern Sex Magick) is “accidentally launched.” In the post he looks for the reason this happens. He doesn’t like the idea of synchronicity (neither do I). He examines the possibility of psychological “priming.” That is, if you are subtly influenced over something you will manifest it.
I would say that the easier solution that answers all the questions is just that we are analog. We are always doing magick to a greater or lesser extent because, whether we appreciate it or not, magick is something we are. If you design the sigil it may be accidentally launched if you’re not consciously aware that you are doing magick 24/7. Be aware of it and you can choose when you want a specific magickal practice to occur.
Have you had experiences where you planned to do some magick and you achieved your results before you could do the ritual or spell?