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Magik, Spells and Casting

Spelling - Magik, Magick, Magique, Magic
First let's talk about the spelling. Magic, Magick, Magik and Magique have all been used to label the art of energy manipulation. Many people see the difference in spelling as a means to distinguish energy magik from sleight of hand entertainments or stage magic. There is debate about the origin of the use of the "ck" and "k". Some point to the writings of Aliseter Crowley, other suggest the use goes back farther.
The American Heritage Dictionary states the etymology comes from Middle English magik, from Old French magique, from Late Latin magica, from Latin magic, from Greek magik, from feminine of magikos, of the Magi, magical, from magos, magician, magus.
Others try to put forth a more intrinsic meaning behind the use of the 'k'. Pointing to the representations of the k in various areas of study. Such as numerology, chemistry, the bible and so on. In my research, only 3 of these associations really make any sense.
  • Some suggest the 'k' is used to associate the activity of magik with Numerology. the 'k' being the 11th letter of the alphabet. In numerology 11 is a master number representing illumination.
  • Some suggest the 'k' is used to associate the activity with Chemistry. 'K' being the symbol of the element kalium or what is commonly known as potassium, a silvery-white metallic element that some associate with the silvery-white cord that attaches the physical body to the spiritual body of a being.
  • Others suggest the 'k' is used in it's representation of 'Kings" from the Bible. Indicating the supreme or preeminent in a particular group, category, or sphere. Or the perfect, omniscient, omnipotent being; God.
Any of these can be touted as the reason behind the spelling of magik. While others can just decide to use it out of preference to distinguish the activity from stage magic.
What is Magik?
Magik is a method of the direction and use of "psychic energy," those natural but invisible forces which surround all living things, connect all things, and connect us to the Divine Consciousness.
The American Heritage dictionary defines magic/magik as:
  1. The art that purports to control or forecast natural events, effects, or forces by invoking the supernatural.
  2. a. The practice of using charms, spells, or rituals to attempt to produce supernatural effects or control events in nature.
  3. b. The charms, spells, and rituals so used.
  4. A mysterious quality of enchantment: “For me the names of those men breathed the magic of the past” (Max Beerbohm).
  1. Of, relating to, or invoking the supernatural: “stubborn unlaid ghost/That breaks his magic chains at curfew time” (John Milton).
  2. Possessing distinctive qualities that produce unaccountable or baffling effects.
In the world of the occult and metaphysics, Magik is the science of energy manipulation. The ability of a person to tap into the energy around them, manipulate it, form it into an intent and send out to the Divine Universe to manifest.
In many ways a spell is like a prayer. The difference is in the manner in which the energy behind the spell or prayer is used. In a prayer, energy is requested and submitted to a Divine being for manifestation. Leaving it up to "God" to grant the prayer. Where as, magik connects with energy up front, focuses this energy into an intent and sends it out to be manifest. There is no solicitation.
This also means that a spell and the use of magik makes the practitioner accountable for not only the desire, but the creation and manipulation of the energy and the results created by it's manifestation. The Law of Accountability takes precedence. In a prayer, the accountability is held with in the person making the prayer, but the results of that prayer are governed by the Divine force being prayed to.
Positive and Negative Magik
Contrary to popular belief, not all magik is negative. Magik is not like what's seen on TV or in Movies and books. While these can be entertaining, they're not really based on reality. Not all practitioners of Witchcraft practice magik. It's a choice, not a requirement.
Those that do, make choices about how they are going to use their magik. Most focus their energy on personal matters, such as manifesting financial abundance, a good job, good health or even addressing a personal issue that they want to change. Such as to lose weight or stop smoking.
Many traditions within Witchcraft expressly forbid or give strong guidance for practitioners to not use their talents that may cause harm. The Wiccan Rede is a good example of this, as it states "An in it harm none". But not all practitioners are Wiccan and some traditions allow for the use of negative magik.
One thing Witchcraft states is that life is about balance. Some traditions believe that if someone does harm, they deserve to have harm done to them. For instance, a woman who is raped might use magik to harm her attacker and help the police catch him and put him in jail. Some traditions would see this as negative magik, while others might see it as the use of magik for justice.
Spellcraft vs. Witchcraft
There is a difference between spellcraft and Witchcraft. Witchcraft is a belief system, a formalized religion with many traditions and approaches that include the utilization of magik. In this form, magik is used in conjunction with a spiritual focus. In other words, Witchcraft believes that magik is performed when a practitioner connects with a God/Goddess or whatever Divine force one aligns them self with.
Spellcraft is the utilization of magik without a connection to a spiritual belief. Most practitioners of spellcraft are often referred to as Ceremonial Mages and not Witches.
The Witch Label
"Witch" is not specific to any one religion. It's merely a label for a person who practices Magik. "Witch", as a label, can exist in any variety of religions, not just pagan ones.
Christian Witches - are Christians who practice magik. Typically you'll find these folk in central and south America. But they do exist all over the world. They believe in Divine Magik, but they also accept Jesus as their savior and lord. They are devout Christians, who simply also believe in magikal practices.
Additionally, there are also Witches within other Abrahamic religions. The Kabbalah is considered by many to be a book of magik. Followers of the beliefs and lessons in the Kabbalah might refer to themselves as Witches. It's not a common label in the Jewish community. But I have meet a few who prefer this title for their Kabbalah practices.
Born Witches
Being a witch is a choice, not a birth right or predestined path. A person can chose to work with energy upon a path of healing; instead of a path of magik. This choice doesn't make the healer a Witch just because they work with energy. Lighting a candle in church or saying a prayer to Jesus, doesn't make someone a Witch either. The act of consciously working with energy to bring about change in a focused manner within the guidelines of magik is what makes a witch.
There is no witch DNA, or witch chromosome. So it's important to know that no one is 'born a witch' or can claim to be a 'natural witch'. Even people with natural talents must first accept them and then chose to use them. And even then, they must chose how they are to be used and what (if any) spiritual path to use them on. Claiming the title of "witch" does not make one a witch.
The Use Of Magik In Rituals
Magik can be invoked in a manner of different ways. A witch can light a candle and recite an incantation to set forth a specific kind of energy. This form of candle magik is one of the most common rituals used by practioners of Witchcraft.
Magik can be put into a spell or incantation to set the intent of the energy and how it's being created for manifestation. There are many ways to construct a spell, and define what you want. There's no one right or wrong way, there's just the inner intent of the practitioner who tries to do the best they can.
Magik is often used in Ritual or Ceremonies to help a practitioner focus their energy. In these rituals a practitioner might use a varying array of tools to help with that focus. These can be physical tools such as an athame, wand, herbs, crystals and so on. These tools are incorporated into the spell ritual to add energy to the incantation, as well as, help the practitioner further focus their intent into the words and movements performed within the ritual.
Additional Reading
There are many articles on PagansPath that can provide additional reading. You may also review the Magik/Shamanism section menu for additional articles specific to tools, candles, herbs and crystals.
Energy & Magik Articles:

Source: 1
Created: 09.30.2008         Updated: 09.30.2008


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