Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.
View your shopping cart Shopping Cart | My Account | Help | Become a Fan on Facebook Become a Fan | Follow Us on Twitter Follow Us | Watch Us on YouTube Watch Us | Subscribe to our RSS Feeds Subscribe
Browse ProductsAuthorsArticlesBlogsEncyclopediaNewslettersAffiliate ProgramContact UsBooksellers
Advanced Search
Article Topics
List of Articles
RSS Data Feeds
Mission Statement
Use of Our Articles
Writers' Guidelines

Email Exclusives
Sign up to receive special offers and promotions from Llewellyn.

Get the Latest Issue of New Worlds

November/December Gift Guide 2015 Issue

New Worlds Catalog

Get the FREE app for your tablet and mobile device. Now available in the iTunes Store and the Google Play Store

Also available as a PDF File.

Click for more information about New Worlds or to receive issues via mail.

The Llewellyn Journal
Print this Article Print this Article

Does Magic Always Have to Be Ritualistic?

This article was written on March 29, 2010 posted under Magic

Ritual magic is just one of the many branches of the magical arts. For example, when a magician charges a sigil or travels into a tattwa realm, it really does not have much to do with ritual in the technical sense of the word. The same applies to other magical workings, such as astral travel or healing with a magic mirror. However, with your expression dramatic fuss, I feel inclined to raise a finger here in warning.

Just what is a ritual anyway? It is the dramaturgical interpretation of a magical act of will and the choreography of magical energy movements, as Frater U.·. D.·. always preaches. We should remember that the subconscious mind is considered to be the main source of magical power (magis), and that it likes to think in imagery and sensory stimuli and does not care one bit about a cultivated sense of aesthetic appeal. It is like a small child demanding clear, bold colors, pompous sentimentality, emotionalism, and eye-rolling exaggeration. The good ole ritual magician is aware of this and will play the role of Caesar when Caesar is called for— clear, bold colors, sappy sentimentality, and so on and so forth. Then the subconscious mind will promptly join in the fun and do everything in its power to bring about the object of desire. (By the way, this is exactly the reason why rituals of thanks are important. They act as a reward for the subconscious—like psychological PR work, in a sense.)

One cynic once said that no one has ever lost any money by underestimating the taste of American audiences. And that does not just apply to American audiences, but also and especially to the subconscious mind. So be careful with such judgments and have a little more respect for the child inside of you. After all, it showers you with an abundance of gifts day after day. No one will ever force you to perform rituals, but please take a minute to think about the principles that they incorporate. Also keep in mind that rituals fulfill the need of religion that many people have, as well as the need to perform holy acts—and both of these needs are rooted very deeply. As far as the rest goes, remember that not all rituals are the same; you can certainly write more “aesthetic” scripts if that is what you prefer. As long as these are not over-intellectualized, the universe that we call the subconscious mind will like just about anything.

From Where Do Demons Live?, by Frater U∴D∴


High Magic
High Magic
Theory & Practice
Frater U.:D.:
$31.95 US,  $34.95 CAN | Add to Cart
High Magic II
High Magic II
Expanded Theory and Practice
Frater U.:D.:
$31.95 US,  $36.95 CAN | Add to Cart
Where Do Demons Live?
Where Do Demons Live?
Everything You Want to Know About Magic
Frater U.:D.:
$15.95 US,  $18.50 CAN
$7.98 US,  $9.25 CAN On Sale! | Add to Cart

Please note that the use of Llewellyn Journal articles
is subject to certain Terms and Conditions

Sitting here in the dark, watching the moon shine over the autumn landscape (my favorite time of year) I find myself reflecting on the question that is most frequently asked of me: "How do I know if my house is haunted?" The question seems so simple, so endearing and direct, but it is as complex as the human mind or the spiritual realm and it... read this article
Chakras Around the World: Are There Really Seven Chakras?
How to Successfully Navigate a Mercury Retrograde
Psychic Vision: 3 Easy Ways
An Accessible Guide to the Thoth Tarot
How Strengthening My Spirituality Helped Me With My Cancer Diagnosis

Most recent posts:
How Many Chakras Do You Have?
Readers, please enjoy this guest blog post by Cyndi Dale, author of a number of books, including The Complete Book of Chakra Healing and the new...

The Paranormal Epiphany
Readers, please enjoy this guest blog post by Sarah Soderlund, author of the new Haunted by the Abyss. I have the honor of talking, lecturing, and...

A Fresh View of Judgement
In my opinion, the Judgement card needs a rename as much as the Hierophant. It is such an important card and so many people seem to misunderstand it....

Llewellyn's 2016 Witches' Datebook Llewellyn's 2016 Witches' Datebook
By: Llewellyn
Price: $11.99 US,  $14.99 CAN
$9.59 US,  $11.99 CAN On Sale!
Love in the Stars Love in the Stars
Find Your Perfect Match With Astrology

By: Brad Kronen
Price: $21.99 US,  $25.50 CAN
Llewellyn's 2016 Astrological Calendar Llewellyn's 2016 Astrological Calendar
83rd Edition of the World's Best Known, Most Trusted Astrology Calendar

By: Llewellyn
Price: $14.99 US,  $17.99 CAN
$11.99 US,  $14.39 CAN On Sale!
Wheels of Life Wheels of Life
A User's Guide to the Chakra System

By: Anodea Judith
Price: $21.95 US,  $25.50 CAN
Llewellyn's 2016 Witches' Calendar Llewellyn's 2016 Witches' Calendar
By: Llewellyn
Price: $13.99 US,  $16.99 CAN
$11.19 US,  $13.59 CAN On Sale!