There was a time when people believed in magic.  There then came a time when people believed the supernatural was just sheer and utter nonsense.  And now we seem to be living in a time when some people want to believe in supernatural nonsense, but wish to hide the nonsense under a pile of pseudo-scientific jargon and misappropriated terms from the field of psychology.  Welcome to the new age.

        I have been perusing occult blogs to see what people are saying about syncretic magic, chaos magic, etc., and what people claim to be doing with it.  There seems to be a trend of making ritual magic more palatable to the mainstream by downplaying the belief in the supernatural or couching it in different terms that are just vague enough to leave belief in the supernatural open to interpretation and plausible deniability.  This meme is highly adaptive.  People now speak of altering consciousness and profound psychological changes, yet the idea of conforming reality to one's will through supernatural means is there, just under the surface.
         I found the following comment from a magic practitioner on a web blog: "the practice of Chaos Magic can be dangerous. Any experience designed to deconstruct one's reality carries with it certain risks.  I have personally known people who have had a head-on collision with disaster due to their use of magic.  Magical practices involve controlled induction of "temporary insanity", and for some this becomes all too permanent."  So, "magic," i.e., the devout wish to believe in a world of fantastic nonsense, couched in pseudo-psychological jargon, leads to dissociation from reality.  Those who wish to escape reality, dissociate from reality.  No real surprise there.  Ritual magic is Dungeons and Dragons for the hardcore abuser.
         I have seen the theme on several sites.  People who have practiced or still practice ritual magic will speak amongst themselves of the risks of dissociating from reality.  I doubt they would be so candid with outsiders.  It would be hard to rationalize inducing insanity, however temporary or permanent.  It's arguably not a good idea to purposefully push oneself towards the brink of madness.  What's more, the day may come when you don't make it back from the steam tunnels.

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