Saturday, November 24, 2012

The Magick Equation

"...light and shade and a certain dramatic tension..."                                                             ~ Jimmy Page, Chris Welch interview
Mage Music 29

This is a briefer post than usual because I've gotten caught up in a deadline for another project that is demanding extra time.  However, the point of this post - that the balance between equal things does not mean sameness - is one worth giving some serious thought to.  The concept applies to much more than music or Magick.

I'm no mathematician  but the above equation looks right to me for a start in describing Magick.  The beauty of an equation is that it clearly describes a relationship of one thing to another.  The use of the equal sign (=) indicates that the things on either side of that sign are equivalent.  This does not mean the things on either side of the = sign are the same - what would be the use of an equation like a=a?   So this is an initial thought on what an equation for Magick might look like, though it's probably not complete - I don't know how to include the requirement for the purity and clarity required of the components on the left side of the equation.  Still, it looks like a decent start - fairly clear, simple even - but that doesn't make the process easy.

In plain English: Desire plus Will, plus Ritual (in some amount) equates to Magick. The (n) is the level of action of ritual.  Performing no ritual action at all could still result in Magick, but unless the desire and will part are very strong, the Magick will likely be puny.  A very powerful Mage could pull it off, of course.

For most of those who practice Magick,some ritual is necessary.  Very powerful and well performed ritual (the n would be a high number) can make up for low d or w

Why the equation?
I've been spending time lately thinking about the balance required in life, in plain good music, and in Mage Music.  When Jimmy Page talks about light and shade, he's also talking about balance between them.  The best contrast adds up to a balance - for example, if there's a lot of light, then a small but powerful contrasting dark will balance it, or vice versa.  Equivalent in impact, but not the same.  It is the amount of contrast between the dark and light that creates the tension:  More contrast, more tension, as long as there is balance.

Evenness is blah.  I'm not sure how to include that in my equation - maybe someone else can help out here. I just know that introducing strong contrast makes balance harder to achieve, and it's risky business.  And I know that when the contrast teeters on the edge, when the tension is highest, sometimes Magick slips through.

YouTube Playlist - Communication Breakdown

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