Much of what has been written about natural magic and the various practices associated with it is needlessly complex and esoteric. This is oftentimes the case because the authors assume that the source of power is someplace hidden, someplace separate from us. If we accept such a belief then it seems necessary for us to conjure magic from elsewhere, or to evoke it and then use it to manipulate things in the outer world. But magic is a part of us; it is the expression of our real nature, and we “wield” it constantly, whether we realize it or not.
Magical practice, in its simplest form, revolves around the understanding that everything in the physical universe springs from an inner source. Many ancient traditions, which we might nowadays label as Mystery Schools, were aware of this relationship between the inner and the outer worlds. Modern science, alongside organized religion, has taught us to distrust it; and, in the process, our experience of life has become stripped of much of its magic. If we believe that the surrounding world is the random result of soulless mechanisms and dead chemical interactions then we will experience it as such. The magical life-force that dances within everything in existence will elude our senses.
Elves, fairies, dwarfs, wizards and Gods rank among the various personifications that this life-force has taken in myth, art and magical theory throughout human history. Tales of the “disappearance” of Faerie realms and/or of magic itself – such as those that appear in Arthurian legends – dramatize the way in which “reason” began to dominate the life of modern man, blinding his eyes to the magical world.
The first step to experiencing everyday natural magic, therefore, is to unravel this cultural conditioning and begin believing in a deeper and less rational depiction of reality. We can experience insights and perceptions beyond the tidy picture that our five senses present us with, but only if we believe that such a thing is possible. We have to learn to trust our intuition, to listen to our nightly dreams, and understand that the reasoning mind – as valuable as it is – can only tell us a small part of the tale of this mysterious world that we live in.
This involves adopting a new and much broader definition of ourselves and the universe. It involves contradicting the scientific view of reality – particularly, the notion that colliding dead matter somehow evolved into life, thought and feeling – and proclaiming, instead, “Consciousness came first!” Everything in physical reality existed initially in the mind. Therefore, if we want to change anything using the methods of natural magic we must begin by painting new pictures within our minds.
This is its underlying secret. We are all magical beings because our thoughts and feelings become real in physical terms. This is the place where New Age thought, the Law of Attraction, new developments in quantum physics and Old World magical practices all meet. It is timeless wisdom and truth that never really disappeared – even when our race largely stopped believing in it.