My magic castle

My magic castle

Friday, November 26, 2010

Casting Spells- Part Two

Because of the importance in getting help from your inner self in bringing forth anything into fruition I want to add a bit to the previous post. To recap, make a spell as clear, as personal, and as lyrical as possible. In addition realize that the word 'cast' is an operative word. Cast the spell out into the world as something that is essentially yours,something deep and dear to you. That visualization of 'casting' it out will give it a bit of oomph and pixie dust. It will also get your inner self to commit to it a bit more. A spell is a ceremony of commitment. Just like standing up and committing to a relationship with another person by saying 'I do' you are committing to results when you 'cast' a spell. Do not treat the casting of spells like wishes offered by a genie from a bottle or a whim. They can too easily go off target, have no power, or bounce back on you to your hurt. In some ways a spell is nothing less or more that fully saying "I will." That act of saying 'I will' embodies the faith in your ability to receive, achieve and deserve. I will become a published writer. I will buy a car. I will lower my blood pressure. I will get a college degree. Anytime anyone has said anything like that they have not modified it by 'I think' or 'maybe'. When you are planning you spell decided if you need to break you big spell down into little spells. Maybe you need to say thing like; I will get into college, I will raise the down payment for a car, I will take up aerobic exercises. Again I want to emphasize that the main point I want to make in this post is about the mental act of 'casting'. Do that with strength and flair. Reach out to the magic that surrounds you to help you get the energy for a good spell and cast it for all you are worth. May the spark be with you.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Magic Basics-Casting Spells

As you read in the lore of magic you realize that spells are endowed with ritual and ceremony. They are framed and performed in such a way that they seem to have a lot of power and importance. They are not cast lightly. Think about this in relationship to the power your subconscious has. If you want to impress on it changes and get it to help you create your new life a well crafted spell will be just the thing. Your subconscious perceives things differently than your left brain does. The workings of the subconscious are not easily evident, they are hidden or occult. Magic is called the study of the occult. To craft a spell state the desired change in as lyrical, clear and happy way as you can. Bring in any sensory messages you can. Here is one I might use: "I am writing, I am writing large on the canvas of life, clothing my message, my vision, my values in all the joy, fun, and excitement that I can bring forth. I am writing for the hearts and eyes of my precious readers, whoever and wherever they may be. It is so.' Spells are clear, assertive and reach out into the universe for you, as well as getting your inner self to help you. Let the energy of the magic that surrounds you help you to craft some spells for yourself. Once you have cast them it will be easier to stand behind them and work to bring them into being. Cast spells for positive changes in your life. If you have negative things in your life do not react with negativity. Craft the spell so that you stay positive. Here is a possible example. 'I recognize that I have lessons to learn in this situation. I proclaim that I will become clear about all and I will move toward self nurturing behavior in this situation. If I need to negotiate I will do so. If I need to break ties I will do so. I recognize the right of all for respect, especially myself and my soul. It is so.' May you be able to cast good spells for yourself. May the spark be with you.

The Magic Of Story

A good story really has an impact, whether it is considered true or fiction. Good stories have a deeper truth. People are now looking back to stories about the ideals of the Kennedy years. Those were real ideals but the stories have power now fifty years later. Another example of the power of story is from the movies, Harry Potter (series) and Avatar. People in Pakistan have been noted putting on protests for better government dressed in blue as the characters in Avatar. There is a group known as HPA (The Harry Potter Alliance) dedicated to doing good works around the world such as relief in Haiti. So as a wise magician I suggest you find a way to clothe your magic in a good story. Tell yourself and others of the changes you want with flair and power. A good story has an impact. Don't simply say, I will go to school. Try instead a story about how you will celebrate the magic of your gifts by attending school, but you will struggle. You will eventually overcome all and will add greatly to a better world. Every good CPA, plumber, teacher, mechanic, does add greatly to a better world. Do not put yourself down. During the Middle Ages, in many countries, many adults and children as well streamed to the Holy Land to engage in The Crusades. This was before media had much power. The stories of the need to take back Jerusalem from the infidel captured the imaginations of all these people just by hearing them word of mouth. The medical and scientific knowledge that was held by by Muslim world would never have gotten back to Europe so well without the Crusades. All this because of the way 'story' called out to people. Novelists and film makers often do a great service to the world by identifying an evil and inciting a struggle against it. The artist may not be trying to cause changes but the stories do have an impact and changes often happen. Find a good story for yourself and be true to it. I once read that 'if your life is not working you are following the wrong script'. Harness the power of story for yourself. May the spark be with you.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Magic Basics-Using The Wand

Cause and effect is a basic part of magic. If you are not getting the effect you want you are "casting the wrong spells or mis-using your wand". I want to remind you that 'wand' is a metaphor for your mind, your attitudes, your actions or any tool you use to bring about the desired changes. So if you are not getting the desired changes it is good to stop and look at your practice of magic. You may not be clear about what you want. You may be pointing the wand in the wrong direction. If you have seen any Harry Potter movies you may have noticed that the students at Hogwarts school get very detailed instruction in their use of their wands. Just knowing there is a wand does not mean it will be used correctly. If you know that exercise will help you become healthier it also helps to exercise. Once I entered into a less than wonderful relationship because I had read "any relationship can be improved that can be talked about". I kind of blanked out the 'talked about part' and either because of his machismo or my shyness the relationship was never talked about and never improved. I didn't pick up the wand that had been presented to me. Using your tools is an art and a craft that is best approached with dedication and responsibility. We can all learn to manage our moods (that is one very effective magic wand). Being in control of yourself gives you control of your life. We can learn to use our mind better as well as develop other skills. So if you need to make a change in you life look for the tools to help you make that change. Some of the tools/wands you might use are: clarity of thought, self-nurturing, courage, creativity, cooperation with others, planning, research, among others. Don't be afraid to recognize the need for a better life. Become clear about your desires. Then reach out for them. If you are hit and miss about your goals they will be harder to achieve. Some people hold their desires inside until the need breaks out in anger. Then they exhibit such extreme anger that others react in negative ways, rather than agreeing to help that person achieve their needed goals. That is a very poor use of the magic wand. The wise magician recognizes that all have a right to a good life. Learn how to use your tools and get the good life for yourself. May the spark be with you.

Monday, November 22, 2010

The Band Wagon Effect

"Jumping on the band wagon" is a term for getting caught up in the excitement of the circus parade of life and joining in with others in what they are doing. You can use this as one of your magic wands for making positive changes in your life. Since we do learn from others and are social beings you can look for a 'band wagon' to jump on to help you with your needed or desired changes. A recent example in my own life is the use of a pedometer. I know I need to walk more. I have been hunting for ways to get myself in gear about this. Today my sister told me that the teachers in her Utah school district are "walking to Maine". The district has issued them pedometers and they record their steps with the school office. She told me a couple of funny stories about the way she feels compelled to make sure she gets every step recorded, such as not wanting to walk around her bedroom after she had changed her clothes until she got the pedometer back on her waistband so she didn't 'waste any steps'. Suddenly the pedometer my doctor had issued me didn't seem like such a lonely boring instrument. I found myself jumping on my sister's bandwagon of using a pedometer to motivate myself to walk. Of course the magic that surrounds me helped me find the old one I had very easily. It had been years and a different living location ago. Jo had also told me that if the battery was low it would not record accurately. That was also part of the magic giving me help. The battery was probably low when I got it, as it hardly seemed to record at all. I had just assumed that I wasn't one it would work on and put it away. But today I wore it all day, even with the low battery, just to acknowledge that I was trying to add steps. Tomorrow I will get a new battery and start recording in earnest. Each day, I am confident, I will try to make sure I at least do not walk less than the day before. I will also find ways to add steps. I suggest that you, as a wise magician, add the band wagon effect to your arsenal of magic wands. What changes do you need to make? Can you find others who are excited about making the same or similar changes? Jump on their bandwagon and go forward toward these changes. May the spark be with you.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

The Magic Of Sparkle

The people of Disneyland know about the importance of sparkle in motivation and marketing. Calling their theme parks 'The Magical Kingdom' adds to the lure. You can add the same sort of lure to your endeavors if you plug in 'add some sparkle' to your own mind set. I was having some trouble motivating myself to do some 'tie up loose ends' work in my writing. Then I asked myself which principles of magic I could use to help myself get in gear. I realized that throwing a bit of pixie dust on my work would help a lot. It wasn't that hard, I just had to shift my focus a bit. My stories are imaginative and fun for me to create. But editing, tweaking and such was not. I shifted back towards enjoying the stories and that gave me the sparkle to do the more mundane work they needed. Polishing my work will end up giving it more sparkle. I just had to remember that. Now I can take my pixie dust and sprinkle it on other things. When I exercise I will make sure I have the best music I can set up to help me. I will arrange my plate for my nutritious meals with all the color and flair I can manage. I will make sure I am comfortable when I pay my bills. I will add all the magic and sparkle I can to my life. The other night I was able to spend a couple of hours in the company of my favorite one year old boy. He flirts, laughs, chatters and plays with a great magical quality. Every wise magician could learn from this boy. He draws goodness to himself by his sparkle. I suggest that you look around you and identify the places in your life that can use some sparkle and add it. Music, humor, color, taste, companionship, hope, are all part of the sparkle you can add to help you have a better life. You can even make up games to help you cut out the negative things that will hover around. The energy of magic is there for you to use. Don't hesitate to take advantage of that. May the spark be with you.

Friday, November 19, 2010

The Magic Of Community

The wise magician will cherish his or her community. The people who have the same values and goals as you do will strengthen and uplift you. They will go out and find out things you need to know and bring that back to you for your growth or joy. We all belong to several communities. I meet with several different writer's groups but I also feel part of several other communities. I believe in human rights, in being concerned about the health of the environment, in reason in government, in the arts, in the importance of education, in preservation of historical landmarks, in animal rights, in nurturing children, in humor as an important part of life, in good nutrition, in toleration, in the importance of science, among other things. So when I find out about the efforts people are putting forth for these different causes I feel like they are part of my family or community. When I can I do put forth an effort to encourage these causes as well. Because I feel part of these communities I seldom feel helpless or invisible. Just by bringing things to the attention of others I believe I have helped to pass on the magic. I suggest you take the time to explore what you believe in and would like to have happen to make this world a better place. Then use your opinion or voice as a magic wand. Speak up for your causes. Just sharing the news of a good article or program on TV will be a good start. Magic is not always thunderbolts. It can be gentle and persistent. By knowing your values you will find many small ways to act on them without stressing yourself, because the burden is not yours alone. Your community of people throughout the world are acting with you. Let the energy of the magic that surrounds you help you speak up for your causes. May the spark be with you.

Monday, November 15, 2010

More About Mirrors

My last post was about mirrors: learning from mirroring and reflecting. We also can learn to reduce trauma by using the concept of mirrors. If you need to desensitize from a trauma, or enable yourself to adapt to something new that is hard, you can imagine yourself seeing yourself in a mirror doing the new or hard behavior. If necessary you can add mirrors seeing mirrors until you find a comfort level. You can also break the behavior down into small parts, in the mirror seeing mirrors situation in order to face the fear. Suppose you are afraid of dogs. First you desensitize to something less than even a picture of a dog. Perhaps that would be the word dog. With enough distance from the trigger for the feeling of panic you can gain some comfort or feeling of safety. Then you step it up until you can see a dog in reality without panic. Another thing to consider is that some dangers cause a person to freeze and they are then unable to find safety. The mirror technique could let you realize that a danger exists and enable you to react in an appropriate manner when necessary. Truckers often think of how they would react to an emergency on the road ahead of time. Then if they face that emergency in reality their reflective practice has prepared them to deal with the situation as it comes up. Some say that television is a mirror of life. Without wisdom being applied to the lesson the watcher is poorly prepared for a real situation. Television programs are meant to entertain or drive up ratings. The programs do draw us in. But about the time we are really involved a commercial comes along and the mood is lost. Or it is too intense and we change channels. But if we would truly learn from Television we need to actually reflect of what has been presented to us. Discussion and contemplation are needed to fully benefit from what is seen on TV. Otherwise half-learnings will be picked up. Stereotypes abound in TV. Without stereotypes being accepted by the audience each story would take too long to set up and tell. If you are a parent it might be well to talk this over with your children. What they see is what they will absorb but it might be a silly mishmash of anti=magic and confusion. So help your children and friends become aware of what they see, and its possible impact, by gentle and wise discussion with them. The wise magician helps others see more clearly by reflecting for them. Be a mirror of clarity and wisdom for others and it will help you as well. May the spark be with you.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Magic And Mirrors

I first saw an Illusionist when I was very young. It was wonderful. Even though my mother explained that many of the magic tricks were done with mirrors I still was awe-struck. At the tender age of five I had already decided that mirrors themselves were magic. My brother and I had a game in which we held small mirrors under our eyes so all we could see was the ceiling of whatever room we were in. Walking around (carefully) made us feel we were walking on the ceiling. That shift into another world was a lot of fun. Since that time I have noticed that in the lore of magic,( stories, spells, movies, and other references) mirrors often are mentioned. So of course I had to ask myself how a mirror could be used as a magic wand by the wise magician. The first thing that came to mind was the daily look in the mirror to see if one's hair is well combed or if one's wardrobe is free of any malfunctions. But it turns out that mirroring is a strong component of growth. Some therapists carefully mirror the client's statements back until the client actually listens to himself. Parents repeat the sounds a child makes to encourage development of speech. It also turns out that researchers in England and Italy refer to our mirror neuron system. What we see others do helps us learn to do or feel that same thing. So if there are changes you need to make put yourself in a place where you can see the good results of the actions you want to adopt. To become kinder it would be better to be around kind people than to listen to a sermon on kindness. When we journal we put down what we are trying to achieve, thus mirroring our efforts. Journaling is accepted as a great help in making changes and achieving our goals. So I suggest to the wise magician that you look for ways to see yourself as more successful, as moving towards desired goals in all the magical mirrors you can find. Friends who believe in you and will reflect your progress, your own visualization efforts, your journals, and the good examples set by others. May the spark be with you.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

How To Let Magic Happen

Remember that I am using the term 'magic' to refer to that which is good and wonderful and 'anti-magic' as that which dampens the spirit or is dangerous for a good life. Stress comes about from being in an anti-magic atmosphere. Ruined relationships and mis-directed behaviors such as addictions are often the result of being in this anti-magic atmosphere. When the situation or atmosphere is bad for you it is important to use your skills as a wise magician and surround yourself with evidence of the field of magic that surrounds you. Remind yourself of goodness to keep that shield around you when it is needed. To me magic resides in the fact I can see color, that I feel good when I think of successes I have had, that I have friends who will tell me when I am off base and when I am doing good as well, that there are a couple of children in my life, that food can taste good as well as be good for you, that people get ideas, that cute videos of animals are often posted online, that jokes and humor is readily available, that people are free to point out the stupidities in the political behavior of our nation, that birds can fly, the usefulness of math, and on and on. I also think it is magical that people can be clear headed when they need to be in times of stress. I suggest you spend some time for yourself acknowledging your favorite things,( as Julie Andrews did in Sound of Music) then visit them when needed. Learn to embellish and add. Perfume, color, smiles can all be added to a situation at times. Perhaps just a touch will be enough to get you in touch with your magic. Being able to touch your magic at will can be powerful. You can shift into a hopeful, creative mode more often and thus make life better for yourself. Try ways to find your magic and see what happens. May the spark be with you.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Magic Jig-Saw

As we get involved in a drive to reach our goals we are in danger of becoming too linear in our thinking. In fact we can be so involved in the process that we get off track without realizing it. It is very important to pull back and look at the big picture once in a while. If we use the concept of 'putting together a jig-saw puzzle' as one of our thinking tools or magic wands we may find that success comes to us more easily than if we just go full steam ahead. Each piece of the jig-saw that we put in place fits in relationship to its neighbor as well as being an important piece of the overall whole. This is especially true for creative endeavors. I am trying to start a young adult novel with the working title of 'The Protector'. I was having a lot of trouble with the plot points. I knew the changes I wanted my protagonist to go through, I thought, but some of the actions just wouldn't gel. Finally I backed up to look at the big picture and realized I have made some mistakes in crafting this young man's character. Without crafting a well-formed whole this story was not going to fall into place. No matter how well I thought up actions and troubles I couldn't make things hold together. But I used the concept of the 'Magic Jig-Saw' and now I feel like I understand the protagonist much better. I can create actions that will make sense for who he is. I can now go back to my linear plotting. But I won't try to reach the goal or the end of the story without fitting the pieces in place where they are meant to go. Life is meant to be well formed. We are multi-dimensional beings. If you are ignoring part of your big picture you may be in danger of not being able to put your puzzle together. Reach out to the magic that surrounds your for help in finding your fit and balance. May the spark be with you.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The Magic Of Active Visualization

Friends, life coaches, articles in self-help magazines, or therapists may have suggested that you develop the habit of visualizing your goals. Think of the home you want, the sleek figure you will have, the nice car or the new job you will find. Many times and in many ways people get the idea of visualizing static goals. But unless you are a musician or an athlete you may not be familiar with visualization as an active process. Many concert musicians practice their music in their mind as they travel from concert date to concert date. Many athletes are taught the concepts put forth in "Inner Tennis" and encouraged to practice mentally as well as physically. The Colorado Ski team, under Coach Suinn became successful for their performance, including in the Olympics as well as their habit of mental practice. Because mental practice is so powerful the wise magician would do well to use it as one of her wands. If you have any habit you wish to adopt, such as more exercise, eating more healthfully, or any goal that takes any action to achieve, you would do well to spend time on a regular basis visualizing yourself doing that necessary action. Put as much detail into this visualization as you can, refining and improving your visualization each time you practice it. It is amazing but muscle memory does develop from the mental practice of using those physical muscles. A long time before a bride walks down the aisle she must learn to be at ease with men, form good friendships, communicate well and so on. Each of these skills will lead to the eventual goal of a good marriage and can be developed at first in the laboratory of the mind. So take courage and envision the changes you want. Then visualize your self doing the needed action to get those changes. Some of the actions may be in getting help or in refining goals. But much is possible. The important thing is to reach for it. The energy from the magic that surrounds you will help you improve and continue your visualization until you reach your goal. May the spark be with you.

Monday, November 1, 2010

The Magic Wand Of Attention

They say that what you pay attention to expands. That can be both a warning and a promise. Attention is like any magic wand. You must be careful where you point it. For months and months I was aware of a part of my living room that just wasn't right. We had not fully moved into our new house. I kept focusing on that area as a cluttered and hopeless area. Then I began to pay attention to it as an area I could change. When I quit pointing my attention at the clutter and instead focused on a better use of that space a magical change began. What was hopeless wasn't that hard to change. That space is becoming less cluttered, more attractive and efficient. The same things are there. But they sure do look different.
When we focus on a drug problem rather than a wellness goal it is the same thing. Or on problems with a relationship rather than the joy of making changes for the better. Be careful where you point the attention wand in all cases. For me I can change the focus on my health. I have a particular health problem that is irritating and takes up time dealing with. I believe I will change my focus from worry and irritation to more healthy habits such as decreasing sodium, increasing exercise, improving my diet, increasing hydration. Even if I don't immediately see a change in this particular problem I will see a change in my focus and worry habits. That should help bring down my blood pressure by itself. Each concern is like a coin. Coins have two sides. You can focus on the delights and good points of something, including the delight of making it better for yourself. Or you can focus on the negative aspects. If you do so the negative aspects will seem to grow until they overwhelm you. So, as a wise magician, I suggest you look around you and focus on the good in your life. When you see changes you want to make focus on the successful ways you can make them. May the spark be with you.