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Author Topic: Essentially, is this Chaos Magick?  (Read 3912 times)
r2squared
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« Topic Start: May 06, 2011, 04:52:29 pm »

The more I read into eclectic witchcraft and chaos magick, the more I feel like maybe that's the sect I belong in. I'm also aware that most witches frown upon this type of magic due it not being "traditionally" and what not, and that's okay. We all have to find our own path.

So essentially, chaos magick is nothing more than taking bits and pieces of tradition from different cultures and using them in spells/prayers/rituals to get what one desires, correct? Basically like someone asking help from different deities all the time?

If not, could someone give me a broader term for chaos magick?
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« Reply #1: May 06, 2011, 05:26:46 pm »

So essentially, chaos magick is nothing more than taking bits and pieces of tradition from different cultures and using them in spells/prayers/rituals to get what one desires, correct? Basically like someone asking help from different deities all the time?

Not really. A chaos magician is more like a serial believer -- he adopts the set of beliefs needed for the magical paradigm he wants to/needs to work in at the moment.

From The Chaos Magic Primer:

Quote
As Chaotes strive to be able to change their personality and habits as they choose, they seek the same of their beliefs. In Chaos magic it is recognised that we only have subjective truths available. We don't know what is true, we only have beliefs. Of all beliefs available, some contradict, some outright disagree, and others accuse other beliefs of being heretical. However, in Chaos belief is seen as a tool. Any belief that helps may be adopted, and then changed for the next one that becomes useful. The belief is a disguise, if you will. The Chaote 'truly' believes, but only for a short duration, and therefore does not strictly speaking ever believe. Chaos magic is full of paradoxes. Peter Carroll's approach, for example, advocates randomly changing belief to get into the practice, where Spare would have argued to abandon all belief.
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« Reply #2: May 06, 2011, 06:13:27 pm »

So essentially, chaos magick is nothing more than taking bits and pieces of tradition from different cultures and using them in spells/prayers/rituals to get what one desires, correct? Basically like someone asking help from different deities all the time?

This is a place where you get competing ways of looking at the world, so one of the very important early skills is figuring out how to do that.

Effective chaos magic is pretty pragmatic, but that's a bit more complicated than "Take whatever bits appeal and throw them together" - it's more like "look at different bits, see what connections them in common, and adapt into your larger paradigm".

Think of it like learning how to cook different cuisines - there's some stuff that pretty reliably works together, and some stuff that doesn't, and some stuff that actually combines well in ways you wouldn't expect (but you have to do a bunch of experimentation and testing to figure out how it works.) I have, for example, eaten at a restaurant that did Jamaican, Indian, and Jamaican-Indian fusion cuisine, and it was awesome, but you couldn't just put every dish from those cultures on the menu (never mind the same plate) and have it work.

For people who aren't working with/honoring deities, this is in some ways simpler. For people who do include deity honoring/work/etc. in their practice, it's a bit more complicated (because it's not just about your tastes, but about someone else's tastes, too.) The deities I've seen most successful work involve have been those that are traditionally pretty open to approaches from a range of perspectives - Ganesha, for example, is traditionally pretty happy as long as people do stuff that makes him happy, and it doesn't need to be all the traditional trappings.

One source you might like is the blog Rune Soup (http://runesoup.com/), who I like very much for a pragmatic and thoughtful approach to chaos magic that neither ignores the skills and practice needed, nor treats deities like plug-and-play devices (in other words, the deities mentioned are those who are generally pretty open to helping with a specific type of goal.)
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