Origin of magic

Rasta

Ad Honoris
Aug 2009
21,071
Minnesnowta
#2
Magic does exist . . . . in our heads.

We humans are highly (some say overly) attuned to recognize patterns. Because of this, we often draw connections between events that are in reality not really connected.

For example, if I am walking outside on a hot day and say out loud: "I wish it would rain!", then a few minutes later it does start to rain, I can't help but draw a connection between the two events, even though I know better.

But we humans did not always know better before critical thinking philosophies were developed.
 
Likes: sparky

BenSt

Ad Honorem
Aug 2013
4,565
Canada, originally Clwyd, N.Wales
#3
Magic has a long and complex and fascinating history. As Rasta pointed out, part of it was the way our brains make connections. Sometimes we make connections that are grounded in reality, sometimes we go on a bit more. Specifically it seems we are hard wired as a species to think in a way psychologists call 'magical thinking' that is that that we as individuals have control over events (it's related to the psychological interplay between social and selfish impulses) [ame=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magical_thinking]Magical thinking - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia[/ame]

In the past, belief in the supernatural and magic was a means by which we expressed our needs. The natural world was filled with things that we didn't understand and so needed to be explained, either in folk tradition or religion. Magic was a natural extension of this because as a species we deem ourselves at the height, and so it is only natural we would want to control or somehow propitiate the forces to do our will. It is literilly one of the few things other than Language, clothing and shelter which all Human societies of the past shared in common. In all Human societies there was magic of some kind.
 
Nov 2010
6,221
Indiana
#4
Magic does exist . . . . in our heads.

We humans are highly (some say overly) attuned to recognize patterns. Because of this, we often draw connections between events that are in reality not really connected.

For example, if I am walking outside on a hot day and say out loud: "I wish it would rain!", then a few minutes later it does start to rain, I can't help but draw a connection between the two events, even though I know better.

But we humans did not always know better before critical thinking philosophies were developed.
It is also possible that your subconscious heard tho infrasound from the storm and put the idea in your head.
 
Likes: specul8
Jun 2012
7,384
Malaysia
#5
Some dudes in the past somehow managed, by their own personal hard efforts no doubt, to learn a bit of chemistry, a bit of physics, a bit of human psychology, a bit of illusion tricks, a bit of sleight of hand, a bit of deft body movements etc. They then put to good use their combined bits of wisdom to an unfamiliar audience. Then, voila, you have magic!

This is one piece of magic I hv done to some dudes. Quite succcessfully some time too. I take a amall stone or marble in my right hand. I flick it approximately rightward, like chucking it away in that direction. But I had actually pulled it back, flicked it leftward, and caught it with with my left hand, before seemingly flicking it rightward.

I show my right hand to my audience. The stone/marble is gone. Then I show my left hand. It's there!

Takes a bit of practice to do it convincingly. But it's quite doable.
 
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Likes: specul8

Naomasa298

Forum Staff
Apr 2010
34,593
T'Republic of Yorkshire
#7
When I was a student, we had this thing called "The Magical Bus Summoning Ritual". Since smoking was not allowed on buses, in order to get one to arrive quickly, one simply had to light up a cigarette. It seemed to work more often than not.

Although no one took it seriously, of course, this is an example of both confirmation bias as well as the aforementioned magical thinking.
 

jegates

Ad Honorem
Dec 2010
4,421
OH to VA back to OH
#8
I find it so frustrating because some things are just too tough to explain even though you are 100 percent sure its a trick.
 
Mar 2014
6,633
Beneath a cold sun, a grey sun, a Heretic sun...
#9
When I was a student, we had this thing called "The Magical Bus Summoning Ritual". Since smoking was not allowed on buses, in order to get one to arrive quickly, one simply had to light up a cigarette. It seemed to work more often than not.

Although no one took it seriously, of course, this is an example of both confirmation bias as well as the aforementioned magical thinking.
Been using that magic my whole life. I call it "Wand of Bus Summoning +5"
 

athena

Ad Honorem
Jan 2010
5,032
Eugene, Oregon
#10
To me many things are still magical, just because I like coming from that place of wonder. For sure some thoughts of magic had to come from math and the ability to predict. It is my understanding Egypt priest kept their knowledge secret. Some Greeks were able to enter the Egyptian schools of such mysteries but they had to pass a period of trail and this could take a long time. Knowledge is power and the priest protected their power by keeping their knowledge secret.

Egyptianinfluence

As marketable inventions didn't catch on and result in economic growth, the Egypt relationship to priest and math also prevented progress. The Greeks had a different attitude, so the Greeks could exploit this knowledge they got from Egyptian mystery schools, as the Egyptians could not and moved mysticism into science and math. But the mysticism would start through the practical application of early maths, and an insight that was then shared with a priesthood, when life was intimately bond to worshiping the gods.
 

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