Date: Thu, 23 Sep 93 18:26:29 PDT
FAQ Question #3 (How do I get started in magick?)
This is a question I asked myself about a year ago. Since then I'm one
year wiser, and maybe I can help you.
About a year ago I asked about how to get started in magick in this
forum. Most of the answers I got were book recommendations. I've read
some of these books, but not nearly as many as I would like to. So,
books are one answer. There are actually books which try to take you
from your first tentative attempts at relaxation into holding a
ritual. Israel Regardie's _One_year_Manual_ comes to mind. I've read
it and tried it, but it didn't work very well for me. Maybe it will
for you. I seem to remember something like this by Dion Fortune or
Ashcroft-Nowicki aswell. Maybe they could help you.
Other than that, it's a matter of Reebok rethoric: Just do it! If you
like to, you can see this as one of the very first exercises in Will;
you Will yourself into making a ritual. And just as with sex, the
first time you'll feel pathetic, clumsy and silly, but if you keep on
learning, you'll improve. And of course, make sure that you won't be
interrupted, and practice "safe magick". If you found a ritual in a
book that you feel comfortable with, try it. But at least try to think
of something personal. Try to visualize yourself doing it, daydream
about it, and if it still feels ok, carry it out physically. Start out
small. Learn to crawl before you go for the marathon....
Ceci, playing the Crone
You start by starting. Pick any ritual from any book you've read that
appeals to you. Try it. Then try another one. Pay attention to what
you experience, and modify the rituals to better fit you. Read some
more, practice some more, create some more...keep going until you die.
It really is that simple. But simple is not the same as easy. Magic
is hard work, but it's worth it for me.
You ask about learning magick and how to proceed.
This would depend on how you learn best.
These are some good references online:
ftp.lysator.liu.se /pub/magick (good and improving)
netcom.com /pub/alamut (soon to be discontinued)
ptero.soar.cs.cmu.edu /occult (very good)
slopoke.mlb.semi.harris.com /pub/magick (very good but convoluted)
Also, you could subscribe to an email pub or two. I only know of one
at present (which I moderate):
Email Without Tears
Email with people you may see on alt.magick may be the best way to
_First Steps in Ritual_ by Dolores Ashcroft-Nowicki, Aquarian Press.
_Ritual Magic Workbook_ by Dolores Ashcroft-Nowicki, Aquarian Press
Eliphas Levi, _Transcendental Magic_ (excellent, though I haven't read it all)
Aleister Crowley, _Magick Without Tears_ (very good, though complex)
_Book Four_ ('Magick', 'Magick in Theory and Practice';
very good but complex)
Isaac Bonewits, _Real Magic_ (well done, though basic)
William Gray, Various (good introductions)
This is from a series of continually-updated posts responding to recurrent
questions in this newsgroup. Please debate anything in here which seems
extreme and add your own response to these questions after the post. I'll
integrate what I can. The quotes are only slightly edited for readability.