A quest for magic and better magic


The magic with which I am con­cerned is any­thing you do in your mind to bring about a desired result.  Prayer, visu­al­iza­tion, analy­sis, practice–magic can be all of these and more.

Magic is the dif­fer­ence between per­fect accu­racy and peak effi­ciency. We all use it; it’s indispensable.

The kind of magic that involves break­ing the laws of the phys­i­cal uni­verse is sim­ply impos­si­ble.  It is there­fore impor­tant to pur­sue, as much as you can, a true and accu­rate under­stand­ing of what is going on in the world and how things work.

Human brains evolved to oper­ate more-or-less suc­cess­fully even in the near-total absence of accu­rate under­stand­ing.  Some peo­ple get through their whole lives by magic alone.

Never mis­take the map for the direc­tions.  Truth is an impor­tant sup­ple­ment to effec­tive action, but focus­ing on cre­at­ing an overly pre­cise descrip­tion of truth can dis­tract us from act­ing effectively.

You never hear an actor say that she applied X joules of force within her facial mus­cles to bend her mouth into a 41° curve.  Such might be an accu­rate descrip­tion of what she did, but it is prob­a­bly not how she expe­ri­enced it; nor is it of any assis­tance to an act­ing stu­dent who wants to por­tray emo­tion as pow­er­fully as the pro­fes­sional does.

Any magic that you do to make life more won­der­ful for your­self and every­one,  I sup­port.  But not all of the magic that you are able to use can be suc­cess­fully used by oth­ers.  Magic is not wis­dom unless it can be passed to many oth­ers and actu­ally ben­e­fit them.

Find this con­tent use­ful? Share it with your friends!