Magick for the Real World

One couple's dream of being the change they want to see in the world.



Living a Magickal Life in a Less-Than-Magickal World

I want to wake up every day and think about spirituality. I want my daily conversations to deal with it. I want to go to work and do something magickal. I want to write rituals before I go to sleep so that I’m prepared for the next day. Instead…I wake up to thoughts of how to deal with problems I have faced at my job in the oilfield. I go through my day having conversations about bottom hole pressure. I go to sleep after finishing my timesheet and expenses describing the frac job I was on. Do I want this? No. Then I should take my own advice, right? If it doesn’t make you happy, leave it behind you. Well that’s just tough shit, as we would say in the oil patch.

I am a father to four children and those four little munchkins have to go to college soon. My wife would like to be able to wear at least a couple pieces of jewelry. I would like to be able to buy a new tire if I get a flat. It all boils down to that all-mighty dollar that seems to be completely absent within the metaphysical community. I refuse to let my family go without the things that they need, and I would like to be able to get away from the foods that will cause me cancer in 20 years. I am not willing to make these sacrifices for myself and my family so that I may go to work in the magickal world.

So I ask you, the reader, the question that has plagued me for going on 10 years now. How do you make a decent living in a magickal way? Is there anyone in the magickal community who makes a living compared to me, a common oilfield engineer? I’ve read that Jason from the Wild Hunt has to crowd-fund his trips to conventions, and he’s probably the most famous person within the Pagan community. To me, this is absolutely crazy. If you wanted someone famous in the oilfield to speak at a convention, you would pay them a minimum of $20,000 for a speech. Jason, Penczak, Starhawk, and all of those other famous Pagans should be paid to come to an event rather than have to pay for their own travel.

So even the most famous people in our community still have to budget for trips/work? That’s nuts. The problem I see is that there is no way that our community can get any inflow from non-magickally inclined people. Yet we all have flow out of our community to airfare, gas, rent, food, and every other normal industry. So we steadily are losing money as a community. I’ll always have to pay for gas, clothes, food, etc. unless I live in some kind of commune (which is a fun idea once the kiddos are out of the house), but there’s no way to pay for it through the magickal community unless we could someone have some kind of a cash funnel from the other industries into our community. So I guess that the real question is what service or good can the people in our communities provide your everyday person without moving outside of the magickal. Either that or we need a really really big trust fund account.

I don’t know the answer but I do think that this is this big question that we as a community have to answer.



Thank you everyone for your support!  We’re moving to a new site along with getting ourselves own domain name.  We did this so that we could have more flexibility with Magick for the Real World’s future.  Wordpress was very limiting in how we could progress with our goals and so we finally decided to make the big move.  We would appreciate it very much if you came to the new site and let us know what you thought of the move.  As always we would love any comments or critiques.  We hope that you continue to support us in this transitional time.  The WordPress site will stay up, but we will be posting all new content at the new site.

Thank you,
Josh and Jen

Just a quick note

Just so everyone knows, my current work schedule is pretty screwy.  I work around 15 hours a day for 8 days straight and then I’m off for 4 days.  This isn’t going to change anytime soon, so my posting will be pretty erratic and you’ll get 6 or 8 posts back to back for 3-4 days and then nothing for a week other than a few quick replies.  As it is, I only get about 5 hours of sleep a night, so the blog has to take a backseat to sleeping.

Will you use the Experience Encyclopedia–A Poll

I’ve had over 250 hits in the past 48 hours and 1 person has submitted their experience to the experience encyclopedia and I’ve had very little traffic to that part of the site.  I understand that this isn’t something you can really do at work or in 15 minutes, so it’s not really that big of a deal.  I was just wondering how useful you guys thought it would be (plus I really wanted to find a reason to post a poll).  So give me a bit of feedback to let me know if this is something that you guys will get much use out of so that I know whether to keep working with it so much.  If you don’t know what I’m talking about, here’s the link  (it’s on the top tab).  

Editing the Blog

Just an fyi, if anyone’s having trouble with the website or things look a little funny it’s because I’m editing things to get the experience encyclopedia up and running.  Sorry for any inconvenience.

New Project: Experience Pool

I’ve started a new project.  We all have had strange experiences that we think no one will understand and no one has ever had to deal with before, and the second one is probably partly right but you’d be surprised at how many of your experiences would help people understand their experiences and know how to better deal with them.  I know that when I was just starting to delve into the deeper magick, I had absolutely no idea how to handle the problems and issues that came up because of it.  So if you’ve got an experience that you think will help someone else or even that you just want feedback on it, go up to the top tabs and click on experiences.  Fill out the form and I’ll post the experience for others to comment on.  I’ll set up an archiving system that will be easy to use for anyone who needs to look through the archives for some information on a particularly difficult instance.

The Easy Religion

I’m going to make some comments in this post that are absolutely not the views of every Pagan in the world. These comments are not the important part of this post, they are simply a way to make a point, so try to keep the commentary away from the obviously skewed views I am giving.

The world sees the Pagan community as childish and silly. I do not view myself as childish or silly. I don’t view the people that I practice with as childish and silly, and I doubt that any of my fellow Pagans truly think of themselves as childish or silly. On the other hand, turn the tables for a second and let me paint you a picture.

You see a group of people who claim to be able to control the weather, make people fall in love, and talk to invisible creatures. They claim that they hear things that no one else can hear, can see pretty colors around people, and think that the Earth (one of billions and billions of planets) is their chief deity. Now, these people rarely have jobs which keep them above the poverty line. They are unhealthy (though one of their chief tenets is healthy living), do massive amounts of drugs (again with the healthy living…), and are most commonly 14 year old girls who do poorly in school and are less than prudish.

These same people have no organizational structure, can’t truly explain the basic tenets of their religion, have no true traditions that extend past about 100 years ago, and have no true holy books (oh yeah, other than the ones that they write themselves), and the authors that make all of their money marketing this “religion” are their primary community leaders…couldn’t forget that one.

They get together under the full moon once a month to have communion with their deity of choice (which they stole from about a hundred different cultures who all had their own belief systems), oftentimes completely nude, have rituals that involve orgies or at least one couple having sex in front of the group, and have no other regular group meeting. At these “rituals” they wear cloaks that reminiscent of a Harry Potter movie and wave “magic” wands around. Now, they don’t do “magic” daily, just at these “rituals” where everyone’s naked. What kind of entertainment do these people have in their daily lives? Reading fantasy fiction, smoking pot, watching Lord of the Rings incessantly and watching movies on DVD (probably from the library because they have a $200 late fee at Blockbuster because they were too high or lazy to return the movies) Oh yeah, and don’t forget how often they complain about how horrible and stupid Christians are because of course this path is far more “enlightened”.

Now compare that to the next picture.

Think about a group that meets twice a week in a well established meeting place. People put on their best clothes (oftentimes suits and dresses) and are extremely polite. The priest or preacher has no other job other than to minister to the people of his church, and he takes it upon himself to help them in nearly all of their problems if asked. The church has food drives, raises money for the poor, and has community outreach projects.

All members of the church donate to the church monetarily. They help support the foundation of their belief with both time and large sums of money. There is little drama, and the church holds youth programs to keep the youngsters out of trouble. The church preaches about morals, tries to keep teens from getting pregnant, and has a tradition of at least 600 years to rely on.

There is a clear hierarchy, nearly all of the members are prominent members of their community, and most of the members are considered “good people” by the majority of the community. Prison inmates that turn to their belief system oftentimes are rehabilitated more by the religion than by the prison system. Their culture values goodness for the entire community as well as goodness to the body, and most of the members actively pursue these things.

The children are taught that they must pray every night as well as every meal. They do this every day. They go to church every Sunday, and oftentimes keep their drinking to a minimum in order to do so. They are respectable citizens who dress so that they are not ostracized from their communities (hence how they are able to actually help people in their community). 98% of the leaders of our country have been of their belief, and at least 80% of the community leaders follow their beliefs as well. They have a single book that was written over a thousand years ago that they have continuously followed. Every member of their faith can tell you the basics of the belief system.

Now, which one is the silly religion? Which one is the ignorant one?

How many of you have actually done some sort of religious action 4 times a day every day for 10 years? How many of you have actually donated 10% of your income to your group? How many of you have sat and worshiped for an hour three times a week every week for a year?

We say that the Christian faith is the easy religion, but I really can’t see how we can say that.

It’s not just the faith where we’re taking the easy road. We run away from society instead of working to change society. We rarely if ever try to make any kind of impact in the world. This year is the first time that a Pagan has held any kind of public office. If we have any hope of changing the rest of the world’s perception of us, we have to become more than a rag-tag bunch of people who are only magickal when we get dressed up in our cloaks (or undressed) at the full-moon.

The Psychodelic Path Pt. I

Notes: This post does not condone illegal drug use. This is for eductational purposes only, and is simply a discussion topic relating to the history of magick.

Hello, spirit, welcome, dear spirit,
my cougar, my puma, my snarling lover,
bring me words. I know you.
And now I see your wound,
and now I see your death,
and wailing is my only song.

~Dale Pendall, Pharmako Gnosis

The most recorded type of magick throughout the span of history is the use of drug-induced ritual. It spans the ages and almost all shamans were known to use specific plants and herbs to induce an altered state. These herbs were revered in Native American traditions, known as Gods and Goddesses in many other cultures. They were the saviors, not the tool of the savior. They were never used for recreation for this was a dishonor to the plant. The plant spirits were the guardians of knowledge, and the guides of those who sought that knowledge.

Demons teach, instruct, and inspire men; there never was a man of outstanding stature in any art or action who had no familiar spirit to guide him. ~Paracelsus

Why do I bring these thoughts up when they are obviously illegal? I bring these ideas to mind because we as a group must understand where the stories of the past come from. The brujos of old often partook in ritual drug use in order to gain exceptional powers. South American shamans still partake in ritual Ayahuasca use in order to cleanse the mind and spirit as well as to travel through the underworld with the plant spirits as guides.

So the question I must ask is which way do we go? On the one hand, the plant guides of the past are dangerous, deadly, and controlling. They are not controllable, and in fact will control even the most cautious of followers evenutally. They are the end to many voyagers of their paths. They are also proven guides. They are the poison that heals, the darkness that brings the light, and the savior that condemns.

Do we discount all of the stories of the past? Are we to think of the shamans of old as ignorant and unknowing of the truth that science and modern medicine has told us about? Do we, the followers of the old ways, the followers of our ancestors’ beliefs, feel it right to take what we think is safe from their ways and leave the rest? I do not wish to push these ideas onto people. I only wish to play devil’s advocate and ask what do you believe?

There are legitimate reasons to abstain from the use of endeogenic plants and drugs. They are illegal. They take the control away from the user. They can even destroy the user. What is your view? How can you discount it completely?

O Sacred, Wise, and Wisdom-giving Plant,
Mother of Science, Now I feel thy Power
Within me clear, not only to discern
Things in their Causes, but to trace the ways
Of highest Agents, deem’d however wise.


On Vacation

Tomorrow morning I’m leaving for a 10 day roadtrip to South Dakota.  I won’t be able to get to a computer, so there won’t be any new posts until August 30th.  Have a great couple weeks!

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