What is magic? Well, we can say so much about magic… We can see it by several angles: pure definition, anthropological view, poetic view, religion view, psychological and cognitive view. So, what is the real mean of magic? Take a look at this post and find all the answers to this question. A magic world are waiting for you!
What is magic? Definition and History
What is magic? When we look to definition of magic we are faced with mysterious forces that make things disappear. In fact, when we look up the definition of magic we can read something like this:
“the power of apparently influencing events by using mysterious or supernatural forces”
Actually if you don’t believe in transcendent you hardly believe in magic. You are more likely to understand it as illusion. So, the definition by itself leaves us a kind of freedom to define what is magic. You decide if magic exists or not, it’s always a point of view.
But so, what is magic? If you need a simple answer I would say that magic is the use of rituals, gestures, language, symbols and actions which aim to explore supernatural forces, transcendent forces.
We can find the presence of magic rituals since the earliest human cultures to our days. In fact, these rituals have an important spiritual and religious role in many cultures at the present, especially in non-scientific societies. They usually explain societal and personal misfortune with magical attacks coming from Gods.
While in some cultures they see magic rituals as normal and being part of their daily-lives, in others the practise of magic rituals are practised in isolation and it is seen with suspicion. In History we can find many facts that supports this affirmation, like the witch hunt which began in 15 century and reached its heyday between 16 and 18 centuries carried out by the Catholic Church.
But it was in Judaism that the concept of the magic took a different way from religion. They defined the magic as practises of pagan worship in order to receive benefits from Gods. But for people of today what is magic?
Nowadays anthropology, psychology and cognitive science refers magic to casual reasoning and also as a way to overcome social and personal problems and emotions. They argue that magic is used to meet individual needs or a collective purpose. Believing in supernatural powers people have more strength to overcome difficult situations and they do it by prayer, sacrifice and invocation. These acts happen since the prehistoric, with magic rituals, sacrifices and gods’ invocations.
What is magic? A profession?
We can also talk about magic as a career. We have people dedicated exclusively to this art and they have a true career on it. Let´s see: what is magic?
It is the art of ilude human senses with simple resources like a pack of cards, a box, or something like this. A magician can make a dove appears from a scarf or he can foretell your chosen card.
An now you are saying to yourself: Well, he is an illusionist.
Well, it is not the same thing. Illusionism is like a magic art expertise that requires not only technical magic knowledges but also other knowledges. An illusionist works with a professional team with theatre, corporal expression and diction techniques domain, audiovisual resources, technique and artistic directions, and many other aspects directed to the show business.
These are just some of the definitions that we can have into account when we are talking about magic, but many others can be seen. After all I have said, do you already know what to answer me? What is magic?