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RE: Black Magic

Apr 30, 2002 05:24 PM
by dalval14

Tuesday, April 30, 2002

Dear Friends:

Re: Magic

It seems to me the dictionary helps in this .

The MAGI are said to be "A priestly caste or order of ancient
Media or Persia ... similar to Zoroastrianism."

MAGIC is said to be: "That which clams or is believed to produce
effects by the assistance of supernatural beings or by a mastery
of secret forces in nature. The power brought into play by any
seemingly occult power. Seemingly requiring more than human
power; startling in performance; producing effects that seem
supernatural; enchantment, ....sorcery, necromancy,

In H P B's THEOSOPHICAL GLOSSARY we find (p. 197) the definitions
of Theosophy:

"The great "Science." ... "considered a sacred science
inseparable from religion" by the oldest and most civilized and
learned nations ... Brahmans and Egyptian "Rekhgat-amans" or
Hierophants would not have popularized belief in the power of man
by magic practices to command the services of the gods: which
gods, are in truth, but the occult powers or potencies of Nature
[which are] ...only the attributes of the One Unknown and

Magic is the science of communicating with and directing
supernal, supramundane Potencies, as ell as of a commanding those
of the lower spheres; a practical knowledge of the hidden
mysteries of nature known only to the few, because they are so

Ancient ...mystics divided magic into three classes -- Theurgia,
Goetia and natural Magic. "Theurgia has long since been
appropriated as the peculiar sphere of the theosophists and
metaphysicians"-- Kenneth Mackenzie.

Goetia is BLACK magic.

And "natural (or white) magic ... has risen with healing..." He
adds: "The realistic desires of modern times have contributed to
bring magic into disrepute and ridicule...Faith (in one's own
SELF) is an essential element in magic, and existed long before
other ideas which presume its pre-existence. It is said that it
takes a wise man to make a fool; and a man's ideas must be
exalted almost to madness, i.e., his brain susceptibilities must
be increased far beyond the low, miserable status of modern
civilization, before he can become a true magician; for a
pursuit of it science implies a certain amount of isolation, and
an abnegation of the (lower) self." ...Magic is not something
supernatural... some are beginning to recognize the existence of
subtle powers and influences in nature of which they have
hitherto remained ignorant..." -- [ T. Glos. 197-8]

"Determined WILL is the beginning of all magical operations..."It
is because men do not perfectly imagine and believe the result,
that the arts (of magic) are uncertain, while they may be
perfectly certain." This is al the secret...." [ H P B
Articles, II p. 483-4]

WHITE MAGIC or "Beneficent Magic," so-called is DIVINE magic.
devoid of selfishness, love of power, of ambition, or lucre, and
bent only on doing good to the world in general, and one's
neighbour in particular. The smallest attempt to use one's
abnormal powers for the gratification of self, makes of these
powers SORCERY or BLACK MAGIC. ["It is always right to try and
alleviate suffering whenever we can, and to do our best for
it.." -- [H P B Articles II 483 ]

BLACK MAGIC --"suffice it to say that whenever the motive which
actuates the operator is selfish, or detrimental to ay living
being or beings, all such acts are classified by us as Black
[H P B Articles II 479] "Thought is more powerful than
speech...unless the "suggestion" made is for the good only of the
subject, and entirely free from any selfish motive, a suggestion
by thought is an act of BACK MAGIC still more pregnant with evil
consequences than a spoken suggestion. It is always wrong and
unlawful to deprive a man of his free-will, unless for his own or
society's good; and even the former has to be done with great
discrimination. Occultism regards all such attempts as BLACK
MAGIC and SORCERY, whether conscious or otherwise." ...[ H P B
Articles, II, p. 483-4]

Best wishes,


-----Original Message-----
From: g s
Sent: Monday, April 29, 2002 12:54 PM
Subject: Black Magic

<<<Any abuse or selfish use would transform the "gift" or the
"ability" into "black magic" and cause it to become destructive
rather than constructive for the good of the whole. The true
INITIATE is one to whom the barriers of the planes of life and of
consciousness become permeable, and those powers which are innate
in all of us, are awakened and given for use only to those who
will never abuse them or employ them selfishly.>>>

The above quote from Dallas typifies the lack of understanding of
magic and especially "black magic" generally found within the
Theosophical community. Since Theosophists do not practice magic,
it seems somewhat hypocritical to put "black magic" labels on
things where they do not apply, or apply relatively. "Abuse" is
subjective and relative, as are "constructive" and "destructive"
so that I, or anyone else, may not agree with what Dallas may
think of as an "abuse." Throwing around words and labels of such
subjective nature is not very helpful, especially when they are
virtually meaningless. What constitutes "abuse" varies with each
individual, and like everything else depends on mutual consent of
a group, society, nation, or culture.

The only difference between white and black magic lies in the
motive. HPB says this, yet most of her followers seem to ignore
it, probably because they do not have a clue what magic is all
about. I see this as a good example of trying to parrot
Blavatsky's words without understanding their meaning (I hope I
am wrong).

There are many definitions of black magic, but the only important
one comes from the "esoteric tradition" that Blavatsky partially
revealed in her writings to us and it is this:

White magic is any magic that does not increase a sense of self
in the magician. Black magic is any magic that increases a sense
of self. If a magic ritual or spell heightens ones sense of
selfhood or ego in any way, then that is black magic. Performing
a ritual to get money for oneself tends to strengthen one's sense
of self, and so can be considered black. But what if the money is
to be used for charity? Helping others in some way usually does
not heighten one's sense of a separate self, and so is usually
considered white.

The above definitions are so, because there is no self, and
anything that tends to strengthen the belief in a self increases
the bind that karma and maya have over us, and thus we slip on
the Path. This is the only "slippery slope" that is meaningful.
Initiation, if it is mean anything at all, will always leave us
with a weakened sense of self (negative side), and an insight
into the mayavic nature of the self and not-self (positive side).

Magic is the conscious attempt to make changes in our self or our
world (not-self). It does not have to be formal with swords and
circles. The notion that "selfishness" is equivalent to black
magic comes from just this -- black magic is making conscious
changes based on a belief in a separate self, and white magic is
making conscious changes based on a belief in the unity of all
living beings. Thus we are all doing acts of white and black
magic every day depending on how we view ourselves and others.

The "Great Work" of magic is the union of the personal self with
the spiritual Self. This is also a goal of yoga and of most
Theosophists. Most Theosophists are therefore informal magicians
whether they know it or not.

If anyone thinks that initiation will give "magical powers" only
to "those who will never abuse them or employ them selfishly"
then they are living in a dream world. Such "powers" are given
and abused every day, by every one of us.

G S.


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