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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Food for thought » » Definition of "Magic" (9 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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bishthemagish
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On 2006-05-09 12:37, tommy wrote:
Jumping back to a point as you are going to fast for me guys.
The stories that you refer to are the stories of the magic force.

What is magic then? Suggestion in a story? A suggestion on a stage in the context of theater in a story?

Does magic happen outside the human mind or inside the human mind? Does magic happen when it is suggested or when the suggestion is accepted or rejected by another person, in the audience. Of course that would say that magic doesn't happen when the suggestion is not accepted. Or perhaps when they - the audience see the manipulation or the gaff.

Is the story - a false storybook story on the stage but the suggestion of magic real?

Danger - a little bit of far out deep thinking here.
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Dave V
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Quote:
On 2006-05-09 14:36, bishthemagish wrote:
What is magic then? ...


Round and Round and Round we go...
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RandyStewart
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Howdy!

Just came across this topic at 13 pages and decided to buy the Cliff notes on same. Unfortunately it's only a page long and simply refers me back to this Topic.

I'll just assume a definition was agreed upon on page one and the following dozen pages are gleeful chat about the simplicity and beauty of it all.
cinemagician
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Quote:
On 2006-05-09 14:49, Dave VanVranken wrote:
Quote:
On 2006-05-09 14:36, bishthemagish wrote:
What is magic then? ...


Round and Round and Round we go...


Hahaha LOL !
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tommy
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On 2006-05-09 12:29, Jonathan Townsend wrote:
Quote:
On 2006-05-09 11:22, tommy wrote:...
Somthing has occured to me just now: When we see Peter Pan fly in a film is that a magic performance without the magician?...


Peter pan is a semi-magical creature from inside a story. He's been raised by Tinkerbell, a magical creature and given among other things a bag of fairy dust (how he flies). Inside the story things are consistent if (from our perspective) whimsical.

Homework time.



I thought he was metaphor in my question.
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

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tommy
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IT IS surprising to find among magicians, and many of them grown gray at the game, the almost universal belief that none but the unsophisticated can be deceived by "The Dragon’s Breath”. Some do not even know it exists. These gentlemen have to "be shown," but that is the last thing likely to happen. Smile
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
Jonathan Townsend
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Quote:
On 2006-05-09 15:11, tommy wrote:
IT IS surprising to find among magicians, and many of them grown gray at the game, the almost universal belief that none but the unsophisticated can be deceived by "The Dragon’s Breath”. Some do not even know it exists. These gentlemen have to "be shown," but that is the last thing likely to happen. Smile


What specifically do you mean by the term "Dragon's Breath"? Did you intend this as a reference to the handheld dealer item which makes for an impressive display? I'm confused as it's the item that came to mind, and while impressive, it did not occur to me as deceptive. Startling yes, deceptive no. IMHO.

Or perhaps this is about a healthy diet rich in ginger, onions and garlic?
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JackScratch
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He's refrensing "Excalibur". The act of magic is more or less refered to as "Calling the Dragons Breath".
tommy
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Those of you who know what's up with that one... shhhh! Half the fun of learning is that sense of discovery. Being told cheapens the learning


And

Does the elephant really turn from a tree into a snake then into a wall than into a carpet hanging on a fence?

If that’s what an education does to the mind I think I will skip school again. Smile
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
cinemagician
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I heard from someone that Blaine had the Dragons Breath last night...
...The best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity...

William Butler Yeats
Jonathan Townsend
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On 2006-05-09 15:26, JackScratch wrote:
He's refrensing "Excalibur". The act of magic is more or less refered to as "Calling the Dragons Breath".


Ah... a reference way out of current context. A good film though. Now if only folks could get through even the first volume of The Structure of Magic we might be able to have more efficient discussions and cogent commentary.

This brings us to another problem in magic, that of magicians keeping and fostering virtual audiences of imbeciles. Sad when you accept that they are all inside the imaginer and reflect upon the values of the person doing the imagining. Keep up the good work. Wallow or read. The doors are plainly marked in the Dewey decimal system. ( Yes that was a reframe, but that topic comes after Bandler in somebody else's work ) Smile
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tommy
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Magic is a device used in stories.



So to you magic is some kind of prop used in telling your stories.

To me the stories are the props of magic.
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
Whit Haydn
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Quote:
On 2006-05-09 11:22, tommy wrote:
Somthing has occured to me just now: When we see Peter Pan fly in a film is that a magic performance without the magician?

I mean if a magician was there say on a stage and waved his wand and Peter Pan flew then that would be magic would it not?


No, it would not. A magician might wave a wand in a Harry Potter movie, and something unbelievable might happen. That is not magic, at least not the kind of magic we are talking about. The use of the wand is a sign of the application of the will and of magic. But in this case it is not what we call "magic"--it is not the same as what we do.

That would be a theatrical depiction of magic.

The spectator is watching something he considers a story--not real--and with that full knowledge he suspends disbelief and allows the normal rules and laws he believes to be true to be suspended for the time of the play.

He may not ever question how any of the CGI or special effects are done, and if he does, it is simply a passing technical interest. That is because he is never asked to believe that the magic is real, happening now, being done by a real person. He is in "once upon a time."

The magician crosses the fourth wall, calls attention to the reality of what is going on right now--an impossible event happening in reality, happening now. The spectator is not a passive observor. He is asked to be a participant--a witness. He is given evidence to examine. The reality of the impossible thing is "proved."

Yet the "prover" is grinning at him as if he would be some kind of idiot to accept the proof.

What can he think?

The spectator at a traditional theatrical event receives the play, hopefully in a thoughtful and engaged way, but basically passively. He is not a usually a participant in the action--a part of the story. Modern theater has explored this sort of participatory theater more than traditional theater, but even with the audience participating and role-playing in the story, they are still not challenged with the attempt to make them think that what they are participating in is really and truly happening in the present.

But in a magic show, the whole audience is drawn into the story as witnesses to the event if nothing else. It then becomes their story--I saw this magician once, and he..."

The play tells you the story of the trickster, coyote. Magicians are the trickster.

People tell stories about us.
Dave V
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So, perhaps for the purposes of this thread would it be more accurate to say you're coming at this from the position of being a "trickster" rather than a "magician?"

Maybe that's where the confusion lies. Apples and Oranges?
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bishthemagish
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On 2006-05-09 15:11, tommy wrote:
IT IS surprising to find among magicians, and many of them grown gray at the game, the almost universal belief that none but the unsophisticated can be deceived by "The Dragon’s Breath”.

Some do not even know it exists. These gentlemen have to "be shown," but that is the last thing likely to happen. Smile

Well, tommy you can lead a dragon to water but you can't make them ?????

When talking magic and what IS real magic as I said before it depends on what people know about it. They talk about magic from their own point of view and from what they know. This is true of magicians and it is true of people in the audience. What they know and what they THINK they know are two different things.

Real magic does not exist in the world of objects and measurement.

Speaking as a hypnotist you are "Hypnotically" correct.

The closest thing to real magic in a stage performance is suggestion or hypnosis. Kellar once said that people told him that they SAW little devils on the stage at different times while watching the Kellar show.

Those little devils were a suggestion via the Kellar advertising on the posters that Kellar used. In his day that WAS a powerful suggestion. And it is said that people saw those little devils on the stage while Kellar was performing.

I find great comfort to sleep in the arms of the dragon.
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Whit Haydn
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A AM a trickster. That is the reality.

The character I play is a magician with real magic powers.

I create magic that looks like real magic. I try to convince people that the magic I do is real, and I try to prove it as convincingly as possible, and to create the "conviction" of magic in the mind of the spectator. I then want to grin and tease and kid the audience in such a way that they can not accept it as "real."

They know I am kidding, they just can't find the secret, and in fact can not even imagine a possible solution that satisfies them. They want to give up and let me tell them the secret, or the want to just let go and believe in magic, but they can't. They will never forget the lit cigarette that never comes back.

My character is also an inventor of crackpot scientific devices like Verne's Captain Nemo, and I demonstrate things like a "Teleportation Device" that I have created.

Same character, same comedy and deception form of entertainment, but one is Fake Magic and one is Fake Science.

It is all the same to me. I can present myself as an Alchemist and attempt to prove that I can turn lead into gold. If I do this convincingly enough, using all the techniques of deception created by magicians, the audience will be "convinced" that I have proved what I have claimed. If I have enough hints and nudges to keep people from actually accepting what I have done as anything but a clever fraud, then I will have created a dilemma--a paradox--in the minds of the audience--something they will just have to live with. It is identical to the art of the fake magician.

I feel that the Theater of Deception is a better name for what we do than Magic.

We encompass much more than just magic.
Jonathan Townsend
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How about using the theatrical model and taking the "proscenium arch" and extending it to the back of the theater, now including the audience?

Such brings the audience into the show and spares them concerns about the rest of the world outside the show.
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Whit Haydn
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Yes, but the magician does not let them ever leave. They can't just walk out like nothing happened. They witnessed the impossible, didn't they? If it is just fake and didn't really happen, then the magician should help them resolve the conflict he has created and tell them the secret. But he doesn't.

They can never get away. They will carry that event into the real world and keep coming back to it until they can come up with either a solution they can accept, or until they learn to live happily with a few little paradoxes.
bishthemagish
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On 2006-05-09 17:09, Whit Haydn wrote:
A AM a trickster. That is the reality.

The character I play is a magician with real magic powers.

It is all the same to me. I can present myself as an Alchemist and attempt to prove that I can turn lead into gold.

I can present myself as a hypnotist and suggest that napkins become 100 dollar bills and then vanish and become invisible and then become visible again. Of course these things do not really happen and they are just suggestion.

Anything can happen in a Hypnoticmagic show!
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Jonathan Townsend
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On 2006-05-09 17:16, Whit Haydn wrote:
Yes, but the magician does not let them ever leave. ...


Aha! We are running the Hotel California.
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