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Connections, String Beans, and Magick

This post was written by Donald Michael Kraig
on December 13, 2010 | Comments (0)

One of my all-time favorite TV programs was Connections with James Burke. He did other shows, including The Day the Universe Changed, but they all have one thing in common: he showed how one small development in one area of endeavor could result in massive changes in other areas.

I had always been interested in history. As George Santayana wrote, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it,” and I really never wanted to see the same things happen again and again.

But Burke’s shows are more than interesting, they actually make old, dried up history positively fun and exciting. I honestly think that if more people had history teachers like Burke, the world would be a better place. But as my mother used to say, “What does that have to do with the price of tea in china?”

And speaking of my mother (Ooooh. Good segue, DMK!), some friends and I were talking about our parents’ cooking the other day. I’m sure my mother did her absolute best, and there were aspects of her cooking that I adored. But the truth is, she put most of our food through a blanderizer.

She tried to provide good, healthful meals. They just didn’t taste all that good. She would boil string beans until they achieved the consistency of paste. Then she would drain them (along with all of the boiled away vitamins and nutrients) and try to get me to eat the goo that was left. I hated vegetables! Or so I thought. After I moved away and began cooking for myself I discovered that string beans were delicious and had snap and texture and flavor. What I hated was the way my mother cooked them.

Of course I not only can’t blame her, I don’t blame her. She did the best she could with the poor training she received from her mother. Anyway, my mother’s favorite singer was Perry Como. Como recorded numerous albums and had hit TV shows in the 1950s and 60s followed by a series of Christmas specials ending in 1986. The thing I remember most about him, other than being bored to death having to watch his show as a kid (better than reading those dull history books), was his amazing lack of energy. He could have been comatose and had more energy! His powerless, energy-free performances had all the excitement and flavor of my mothers soggy string beans.

Okay, so there was one song of his that I really did like. It was “Catch a Falling Star” and had the lyrics,

Catch a falling star and put it in your pocket
Save it for a rainy day.
Catch a falling star and put it in your pocket
Never let it fade away.

And those lyrics remind me that tonight, December 13, 2010, is the night of the Geminids meteor shower. It’s the last chance to see a barrage of shooting stars this year. Of course, if you’re in the mountains or on a desert or away from city lights, you’re likely to see meteors any evening. But tonight there’s going to be a lot of them.

And that started me thinking of how they could apply to magick. Meteors have a lot of power to burn brightly and then fade to nothing. That’s a great way to think of sigil magick: put a lot of energy into it and then forget about it. In Modern Magick I describe how to design talismanic sigils for magickal work. You can design several for a variety of reasons, then put them aside. When you come back to them your conscious mind won’t know the meaning of the strange symbols you created, but your unconscious will. Sending energy like the flaming shot of a meteor through the skies to your talisman, then forgetting about it, can be a powerful form of magick you can try.

I would suggest doing this type of magick for something that you want to occur quickly and last a long time: catch the energy of a falling star and never let it fade away.

What would you do with this type of magick?

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