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Socrates

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During my time living with the Tibetan monks my favourite magician at the monastery was the resident artist who taught me about the healing properties of art and the importance of our connection to the natural world.

"The world is its own magic" - Shunryu Suzuki

He took a pencil and drew a lotus flower in my sketchbook whilst explaining the symbolism as he worked.... at the same time he drew me into his world and took me back to the village of his youth. He spoke about the local healers and how they worked within the community to heal individuals and bring everybody together.

We drank freshly made coffee and discussed this world of magic in which we find ourselves. On more than one ocassion he mentioned the importance of respecting and working with mother nature... when we are out of balance we lose our centre, now I look back and wonder what his thoughts would be on the current pandemic.

There is so much magic in the world yet we are sometimes misdirected by our own technological tricks. Earlier today I looked at the lotus flower penciled into my sketchbook and thought back on my meeting with the Nepalese magician.

Magic is the art of transformation!
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SamtheNotasBadasIWas

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Your post reminded me of the spiritual aspects of late Medieval/Early Renaissance Alchemy and how the turning of lead into gold was a metaphor for the spiritual transformation of the dross in a human soul into divine gold.
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RayJ

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Socrates, your lotus drawing reminded me of something.  Some here will remember the tissue paper flower that some magicians would make and give to a spectator.  Simon Lovell published his version 'Twisted Roses' in 'Son of Simon Says!'

Never underestimate the power of giving a souvenir like that to a spectator.  I've seen women walk out of a performance clutching the flower to their chest and behaving as if it were real.  A signed card is nice and all, but a tissue flower that they observe being made carries with it a precious memory.
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RayJ

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As far as magic tricks that evoke the wonder of nature, Doug Henning's 'The Sands of Time' is a classic example.  First time I saw it, I was clueless.  With the proper lighting, music and presentation I can't imagine anything as remarkable.
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RayJ

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Another incredible example is Dr. Sawa.  Just sit back and enjoy.

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My ancestors and tribes were(still are) Nomadic Hunter-Gatherers, but they were(still are) Animists, and still attuned to Wild-Nature
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Paco Nagata

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Quote:
Originally Posted by RayJ
Another incredible example is Dr. Sawa.  Just sit back and enjoy.


I have watched this video many times on Youtube!
But the first time I watched it wasn't on Youtube, but on TV when I was a child, in a broadcast show about magic.

"Hiroshi's magic is pure poetry"

Dai Vernon (Osaka, 1969)

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SamtheNotasBadasIWas

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Socrates
During my time living with the Tibetan monks my favourite magician at the monastery was the resident artist who taught me about the healing properties of art and the importance of our connection to the natural world.

"The world is its own magic" - Shunryu Suzuki

He took a pencil and drew a lotus flower in my sketchbook whilst explaining the symbolism as he worked.... at the same time he drew me into his world and took me back to the village of his youth. He spoke about the local healers and how they worked within the community to heal individuals and bring everybody together.

We drank freshly made coffee and discussed this world of magic in which we find ourselves. On more than one ocassion he mentioned the importance of respecting and working with mother nature... when we are out of balance we lose our centre, now I look back and wonder what his thoughts would be on the current pandemic.

There is so much magic in the world yet we are sometimes misdirected by our own technological tricks. Earlier today I looked at the lotus flower penciled into my sketchbook and thought back on my meeting with the Nepalese magician.

Magic is the art of transformation!


The wholistic mentality of the Eastern philiosophies stands in such contrast to categorizational and heirarchial philiosophies of the West. It is always interesting to understand the perspective of ideas that are counterintuitive to your own culture's foundational beliefs. One of the difficulties, however, is fitting the two different viewpoints together. What I have seen in the discussions on this forum is that we really don't know what magic is, because we do not know how to define it. Just within the professional world of "magic" you have legerdemain, mentalism, and escapology. What makes them all fall under the same banner? What they (from what I have seen) have in common is that they entertain people, but then so does singing and dancing, which are not included under the umbrella term of "Magic". And yet again, magicians seperate people who do actual magic tricks into "real magicicans" vs "someone who does tricks". Perhaps magic can not have an universal definition because it must occur within the context of human interaction and that context is always in flux?

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John Cowne

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Quote:
Originally Posted by SamtheNotasBadasIWas


The wholistic mentality of the Eastern philiosophies stands in such contrast to categorizational and heirarchial philiosophies of the West. It is always interesting to understand the perspective of ideas that are counterintuitive to your own culture's foundational beliefs. One of the difficulties, however, is fitting the two different viewpoints together. What I have seen in the discussions on this forum is that we really don't know what magic is, because we do not know how to define it. Just within the professional world of "magic" you have legerdemain, mentalism, and escapology. What makes them all fall under the same banner? What they (from what I have seen) have in common is that they entertain people, but then so does singing and dancing, which are not included under the umbrella term of "Magic". And yet again, magicians seperate people who do actual magic tricks into "real magicicans" vs "someone who does tricks". Perhaps magic can not have an universal definition because it must occur within the context of human interaction and that context is always in flux?


Sam, your thoughts reminded me of one of my favourite philosopher/ authors who lived his formative years in India : Ravi Zaccharias. When discussing eastern versus westen thought, (one western philosophy professor was telling him ‘how’ easterners thought; an amusing irony), Ravi would reply about the assumed either/or versus the both/and perspectives. He argued that even in India, people look both ways before crossing the road; it’s EITHER them OR the bus 😉..Some things transcend cultural differences. I suspect magic might be in that category. I found Penn and Teller’s recorded trip to India a fascinating and encouraging study in wonder shared across cultural barriers.
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Socrates

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Penn and Teller in India was an eye-opener, in fact I enjoyed watching all three episodes of that series. It was along long time ago now when they first aired but they stuck with me.

The episode in India was especially interesting to me after reading 'Magic and Meaning' by Burger and Neale... I'd also read 'Net of Magic' by Lee Seigel which may well have been the inspiration for Penn and Teller's show as it featured the the author and the street magician from the book.

Definite food for thought in those books and shows.
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RayJ

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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Cowne


Sam, your thoughts reminded me of one of my favourite philosopher/ authors who lived his formative years in India : Ravi Zaccharias. When discussing eastern versus westen thought, (one western philosophy professor was telling him ‘how’ easterners thought; an amusing irony), Ravi would reply about the assumed either/or versus the both/and perspectives. He argued that even in India, people look both ways before crossing the road; it’s EITHER them OR the bus 😉..Some things transcend cultural differences. I suspect magic might be in that category. I found Penn and Teller’s recorded trip to India a fascinating and encouraging study in wonder shared across cultural barriers.


John, I've heard Ravi tell that story and it is hilarious.  He was very good at pointing out the shortcomings of many philosophies.  He is missed.

The beauty of magic is that it can transcend cultural differences, you just have to choose the effect wisely.  A trick that relies on verbal directions won't be very effective in crossing the language barrier, but a visual, "needs no explanation" trick will.
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Alan Smithee

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Reply with quote  #12 
Quote:
Originally Posted by X
My ancestors and tribes were(still are) Nomadic Hunter-Gatherers, but they were(still are) Animists, and still attuned to Wild-Nature


Beyond my mother and father, I have no idea who or what my ancestors were.

I'm guessing that the real old-timers among my lot were hunter-gatherers. If they weren't, they wouldn't have lasted long and I wouldn't be here. 

What they believed in is anybody's guess. If they were at all like me, it wouldn't amount to much.
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