I used to think of ‘magic’ as ‘mind over matter’, as in the somewhat blithely misrepresented ‘observer effect’ (which, it turns out, works with such simple mechanical ‘observers’ as cameras) and the uncertainty principle (cat and all—so social media friendly, yet ostensibly purely theoretical).
Consider that all magic begins with natural magic; with crazy, chaos magic; with the messy, mad methods of the shaman.
Consider that Western magic’s most common tongue and script are not those of medieval Latin but of Hebrew!
Magic, then, is ‘the social outsider’s eccentric plugging in to nature’, and I say ‘nature’ not ‘matter’ to awaken the atmosphere of wonder, without which you may have ‘knowledge’ but not ‘consciousness’, since deprived of the sacred tie that binds all into one (call it ‘the Higgs field’, ‘the Matrix’, ‘the Mother’, ‘the Goddess of Infinity’ or ‘Fairy Godmother’) you remain only male, only right-brained, only quantitative, only half-real.
Ironically, then, while this lets you be an ‘insider’ to the heavily drugged middle class, it simultaneously obliges you to be a ‘stranger’ to the cosmos and to your self, which is no way to live and no way to die.
As Hildegard of Bingen said, ‘An interpreted world is not a home’. Never make the mistake of equating ‘orthodoxy’ with ‘truth’.
It seems like, if the ostensibly lazy-minded mainline Christian mythos is to be taken for truth, we’re meant to believe that the God who created everything (well, except Godself) had, earlier in human history, this fixation on blood (both bloodlines and bloodshed) but that God at one point had an enlightenment and became all about breath (both soul and spirit). Does God then evolve or manifest differently as we evolve? But if (as the mainline Christian mythos also insists) God is infinite and absolute (which makes God impersonal and unrelatable which we’re told necessitated the Incarnation), then:
(a) it wouldn’t seem that God could evolve,
(b) it wouldn’t seem to make a difference how far we progress since mathematically speaking we’ll never get any closer to infinity
(“Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity” [Ecclesiastes 1:2]), and
(c) it wouldn’t seem that anything (not even neurotic little me) could be excluded from deity or divinity
(“Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence?” [Psalm 139:7]).
Such are the questions mystics ask but sheep are too intimidated to raise. (“Audentes Fortuna iuvat” / “Fortuna favors the bold” [a Latin proverb]). Too much order or too much chaos make our world a hell. We’re forever adjusting but also trying to find an intellectually satisfying synthesis. And this I think is what we call God.