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  • #16
    Even those with no talent who don't stick it can learn something vauable to themselves or for their path as can the teacher who is trying to teach them

    Not everything comes down to how successful you are sometimes the most important lessons are in the failures we face in life

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    • #17
      If your failures teach valuable lessons then aren't they successes?


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      • #18
        Originally posted by Dawa Lhamo
        Right, but I don't think magic is as specific as a piano. You could say that doing magic is like making music.
        you could also say that doing magic is like singing. in that case, you can be as technically brilliant as you like, if the natural tone of your voice is horrible, then you'll never be a good singer. thus negating your entire point. so who's right, is doing magic like singing or like making music? trying to argue a point by using a metaphor is a huge mistake (scroll down for another reason as to why this is so).

        Originally posted by Dawa Lhamo
        Perhaps one tradition is the piano, another the flute, you've got voice, percussion, etc.
        and perhaps its not. perhaps magic is like all of music, cooking is like all of visual art, woodwork is like all of dance etc. perhaps being alive is like being able to use magic and perhaps being dead is like being unable to use magic. in which case, seeing as some people are obviously dead and some people are obviously alive, some people are obviously able to use magic and others obviously arent. my metaphor is just as valid as yours i.e. both are equally useless for arguing a point. its about as useful as saying that its your personal opinion that something you have never seen is slightly less blue than something else you have never seen.

        Originally posted by Dawa Lhamo
        Now, say you're like me and you just can't get bass clef. I took piano two years, and while I can do simple things still, it wasn't for me. But did I give up music altogether? No. Next I sang in the choir. Actually, I got to sing a lot of lead parts, not because my voice was great, but because I could sing in-tune. After the other kids in choir developed their pitch, though, I just became peripheral... So then I decided to play the flute. Turned out to be a good match. Now, say if I was, indeed, tone-deaf, that doesn't mean I have to give up music altogether either. I won't be able to tell if I'm out of tune and won't really be able to play by ear, but given good music and notes, I can make something serviceable.
        its good to hear that you werent discouraged by your failures, but whats the relevance of your story? it still hinges upon a metaphor being applicable to the situation being argued.

        Originally posted by Dawa Lhamo
        And even then, if tonal music just isn't working, there's always percussion. Tone-deaf people tend to still have good rhythm even if they can't "carry the tune"...
        do they really? news to me, got any proof, or should we consider that hearsay? even if you've got proof, any significance the metaphor may have to the subject falls to pieces here, because even on the off chance that tone-deaf people still tend to have good rhythm, that doesnt make this applicable to magic because its a specific habit, a specific circumstance that is specific to the metaphor itself.

        Originally posted by Dawa Lhamo
        Personally, I think that if you are looking at only one or only a few systems of magic or manipulating energy, then yes, some people will just be incapable of doing it, and some will naturally have that bent, while people in between need training. But if you look at the vast array of ways to do magic, then it seems to me that if a person is dedicated enough, they will eventually find something that fits with them. ^_^
        for one thing, we're talking witchcraft. therefore, by your own reasoning, some people can be witches and some cannot (using the term in a non-anthropological context). for another, simply because there are many ways of doing something, that does not mean that the thing can be done by anyone if only they find a way.

        Originally posted by Dawa Lhamo
        And people often don't realize that even though you may not see it or feel the energy/magic, that doesn't mean you can't do it. It just means that you need to be very careful and deliberate. ^_^
        but thats beside the point. if you cant see or feel energy/magic, then sure, you may still be able to manipulate it. but if you cant see or feel or manipulate energy/magic, then you cant see or feel or manipulate energy/magic. we're not arguing that the inability to see or feel energy/magic makes one unable to manipulate it, we're arguing that the inability to manipulate energy/magic exists in some people, therefore making some people unable to manipulate energy/magic and thereby making some people unable to be witches. (i would go further, but it would require semantic argument, which, though being the only constructive type of argument, is mostly disliked.)




        disclaimer: whilst i am no longer in the business of offending people, if you're offended, eat me. i'll defend what ive said until i get bored with you :kooky:

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        • #19
          hmm as I read through this I am stuck wondering why it is that there is an expectation every witch should be good at all the same things in order to be called witch? It's an unreal and unattainable expectation.

          Let's say as an example you have a natural witch who can manipulate energies very well yet she doesn't know squat about herbs, stones, history, divination, or ritual.

          Next to her you have another witch who knows all these things but when it comes to energy manipulations she has to really work at it.

          Which one is a witch? I think they both are. Even though they are very different.

          And these two witches from above, I know them both. The latter one will make every natural witch she comes into contact feel like she can never be a witch just to cover up for her own insecurities. The natural witch does the exact same thing to those who aren't natural witches to cover for her lack of knowledge.

          The line of thinking that says you have to be born to do this sets others up for failure which I find to be really unfair and I think it also creates rifts in areas we should be working to unify instead of alienate.
          ~I ride the Dawn, I sail the Dusk, I am the world in between. ~

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          • #20
            Originally posted by dr_zeus440
            you could also say that doing magic is like singing. in that case, you can be as technically brilliant as you like, if the natural tone of your voice is horrible, then you'll never be a good singer. thus negating your entire point. so who's right, is doing magic like singing or like making music? trying to argue a point by using a metaphor is a huge mistake (scroll down for another reason as to why this is so)
            Ok, well, my point was that there are many different systems of magic and many different ways of doing it, so even if someone is unable to do one, they can still keep trying other ways, and perhaps (like music) there is a way for them to make magic. My metaphor was in response to the piano metaphor. Not everyone can play piano, no, but everyone can make music. So, the point to argue then, is whether magic is as specific a tool as piano or if it's as broad a field as music. I believe that it's a broad field with many ways, as evidenced by the enormous variance just on this English-speaking board. ^_^
            and perhaps its not. perhaps magic is like all of music, cooking is like all of visual art, woodwork is like all of dance etc. perhaps being alive is like being able to use magic and perhaps being dead is like being unable to use magic. in which case, seeing as some people are obviously dead and some people are obviously alive, some people are obviously able to use magic and others obviously arent. my metaphor is just as valid as yours i.e. both are equally useless for arguing a point. its about as useful as saying that its your personal opinion that something you have never seen is slightly less blue than something else you have never seen.
            If you'll notice, I was responding to another metaphor in the first place. Perhaps because my metaphor tries to explain something different than what you believe, you pick mine apart, but not the original? Is this what you're trying to do? If my metaphor is invalid, so is the piano metaphor... so where does that leave us? Have we gotten anywhere? I still think that just because a person cannot do one or even several types of magic, that doesn't mean they're automatically mundane. Now, if you are speaking in the context of a closed culture, where there are only one or two types of magic in that society, such as the witch-doctor example, then of course some people can do it and some people can't. But in this society I live in, I have access to cultures and systems of magic from around the world and the possibility that I, even if I can't do the magic from my region, can find a kind of magical system that works for me is still there... the possibility exists. At some point, sure, one might get exhausted from trying, but personally, I think if they Will to practice magic, then there is some type of magic out there that they can practice...
            its good to hear that you werent discouraged by your failures, but whats the relevance of your story? it still hinges upon a metaphor being applicable to the situation being argued.
            Of course. And I would argue that my metaphor is more applicable because there are many ways to make music rather than playing one instrument... just as there are many systems of magic The point isn't to say, oh, this metaphor makes sense, so therefore she must be right about everything... that's not what I'm saying at all... I was presenting a counter-metaphor to the original metaphor, so that people could critically think about which points really were applicable, and come to their own conclusions... Perhaps you think I'm overestimating people's intelligence here by assuming that they'd approach my metaphor critically?

            I only came up with it to counter the first metaphor, not to make an absolute statement... If you say, "oh, well I think life is like a tree", I can reply, "well, I see it more like a forest because..." We aren't actually defining life, we are expressing our viewpoints as to the qualities that life has. My counter metaphor doesn't mean that all things about a forest also apply to life or that no other metaphors work.

            I was just trying to introduce a different way of thinking about magic. Therefore, if magic is like music, with different paths for different people, then even though one way might be a failure, the next might be the right fit... Notice the IF... I'm not saying accept this as gospel, I'm saying, "hey, what if you think about it this way?" Which is exactly the purpose of using a metaphor in the first place.

            You seem to think I've fallen in love with my metaphor, and perhaps I did let it go on too long without tying it back to my point, but I am perfectly aware of what is and isn't metaphor, I assure you. Thanks for your concern, but I don't believe it's needed.

            do they really? news to me, got any proof, or should we consider that hearsay? even if you've got proof, any significance the metaphor may have to the subject falls to pieces here, because even on the off chance that tone-deaf people still tend to have good rhythm, that doesnt make this applicable to magic because its a specific habit, a specific circumstance that is specific to the metaphor itself.
            You know, it gets really frustrating when one has to qualify everything one says with "In my experience" or "in my opinion"... as several other people have stated on this board over the years, when someone posts something, one can safely assume that they are speaking from their own experience and with their own opinion... So, I'd like for you to please assume that when I say tone deaf people tend to still have good rhythm, I'm speaking from my experience. I've had several years playing and teaching music, and from what I've seen, yes, tone deaf people still tend to have good rhythm. I expect everyone to take what I say with a grain of salt, as I take everything everyone else says with a grain of salt. The point of that was that IF tone-deaf people (in response to the piano metaphor) can still make music in general, and IF my metaphor about music is more applicable than the piano one, THEN apparently "incapable" people MAY still be able to make magic, IF they can find a system to suit them. I'm sorry that I expect people to analyze what I say... I guess that liberal arts education is really screwing me over. (And if I ever state what I perceive as fact, you can be assured that I'll post references.) I'm not saying that everything matches up exactly, I'm saying that my counter-metaphor has points that counter the original metaphor and I expect whoever reads my post to figure out what points they agree with and what they don't.
            for one thing, we're talking witchcraft. therefore, by your own reasoning, some people can be witches and some cannot (using the term in a non-anthropological context). for another, simply because there are many ways of doing something, that does not mean that the thing can be done by anyone if only they find a way.
            Both of these statements are true. Perhaps I've been blind in equating people who do magic as witches... that point I can agree with you. Since the term witch is culture-specific, automatically only some people can be witches.. however, if you take the "equivalent" of "witch" in other cultures, then perhaps everyone can achieve the same results, if by different methods... It's true, perhaps that you could not call them "witches", then, except if you are an anthropologist. ^_^

            And I'm aware that simply because there are many ways of doing something, not necessarily everyone can do that thing if they "only find a way"... However the likelihood that there is a way for them to do this is quite increased... It seems common sense to me... If you have only two ways of doing something, then only certain people can do it, but if you have several thousand ways, then you have a much greater likelihood that any given person will find a way to do it. There still might be exceptions, and I allowed for that in my first post.
            but thats beside the point. if you cant see or feel energy/magic, then sure, you may still be able to manipulate it. but if you cant see or feel or manipulate energy/magic, then you cant see or feel or manipulate energy/magic. we're not arguing that the inability to see or feel energy/magic makes one unable to manipulate it, we're arguing that the inability to manipulate energy/magic exists in some people, therefore making some people unable to manipulate energy/magic and thereby making some people unable to be witches. (i would go further, but it would require semantic argument, which, though being the only constructive type of argument, is mostly disliked
            It wasn't necessarily meant to fit in the point but peripherally... Peripherally it's saying that even without any outward indication, such as seeing or feeling magic, some people can still do it relatively easily, so we shouldn't necessarily dismiss all people without outward indication of ability to do magic. Not that they're necessarily able to do it, but that they shouldn't be dismissed out-of-hand... This statement wasn't in response to anything in particular, just a point that I thought ought to be noted.

            Tashi delek!
            Dawa Lhamo
            Before you accuse someone of LYING, please read this first.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by Dragonladyofwater
              And these two witches from above, I know them both. The latter one will make every natural witch she comes into contact feel like she can never be a witch just to cover up for her own insecurities. The natural witch does the exact same thing to those who aren't natural witches to cover for her lack of knowledge.

              The line of thinking that says you have to be born to do this sets others up for failure which I find to be really unfair and I think it also creates rifts in areas we should be working to unify instead of alienate.
              lol... I've definitely seen this. Even if they don't verbalize it, that competitive air is still there... Even if neither of them consciously realizes it. ^_^

              Tashi delek!
              Dawa Lhamo
              Before you accuse someone of LYING, please read this first.

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              • #22
                Forgive me, but don't you have to have some sort of believe in Paganism/Witchcraft before deciding you want to be a witch. I mean you can learn everything, but its still only theory and words, if it doesn't have meaning then its mostly useless. Right?


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                • #23
                  Originally posted by RubyRose
                  Forgive me, but don't you have to have some sort of believe in Paganism/Witchcraft before deciding you want to be a witch. I mean you can learn everything, but its still only theory and words, if it doesn't have meaning then its mostly useless. Right?
                  I'm not sure what you're getting at, RubyRose, can you explain it another way, perhaps?

                  Tashi delek!
                  Dawa Lhamo
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                  • #24
                    To me magic is as natural as breathing. I was raised with witchcraft, it runs in the family. My grandmother's favorite saying on the subject was "We've all got the gift. Some have just forgotten to open it; some have tossed it in a corner unopened and some are trying too hard to open it." She believed that the reason magic works is precisely because we're all "natural witches". She was the best healer I know but she often said that she was just "helping people" heal themselves.

                    I think she was right on all counts. Those people who try too hard are the ones who seem to have no "talent" for it. But that's not the case, because we all have the "talent", it's just that they're going about it the wrong way.

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                    • #25
                      But isn't it cruel to lead someone on. If you're teaching someone, it's implies that there is something there for them. They soon grow frustrated and would leave in a greater fuss then someone who you were frank with.
                      The truth is that if this person is really hell bent on being a witch and you tell them that they suck at it; they may just get pissed and find someone else to teach them. Besides are you the supreme ruler and all knowing expert on all forms of witchcraft? How do you know that they really can't be a witch and it not just your techniques that they can't grasp? Maybe they are just not meant to be in your little elitist blue blood clan of witches.
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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by Sage Rainsong
                        The truth is that if this person is really hell bent on being a witch and you tell them that they suck at it; they may just get pissed and find someone else to teach them. Besides are you the supreme ruler and all knowing expert on all forms of witchcraft? How do you know that they really can't be a witch and it not just your techniques that they can't grasp? Maybe they are just not meant to be in your little elitist blue blood clan of witches.
                        Elistist blue blood clan of witches? LOL. You're funny. Did I say I was the supreme ruler and when did I learn all forms of witchcraft? What special techniques would I have?

                        People who can't sing are told that. If you can't draw and you go to school for drawing, your teacher will sit you down and tell it to your face. I know, it happened to me. Did I take offense? No. I have no talent in drawing, in any of the forms. I tried my damnest. Didn't take any difference.

                        So why is it that you can tell someone they can't sing, they can't draw, they can't program on the computer, or any number of other things, but you can't say that about a witch? Why is witchcraft different from any other craft out there in the world? This is my question.
                        -Kendrah


                        'We shall not cease from exploration
                        And the end of all our exploring
                        Will be to arrive where we started
                        And know the place for the first time.'
                        -T.S. Eliot

                        "Oh, no no no, it was too cold always
                        (Still the dead one lay moaning)
                        I was much too far out all my life
                        And not waving but drowning."
                        -Stevie Smith

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by Sage Rainsong
                          Maybe they are just not meant to be in your little elitist blue blood clan of witches.
                          I agree with your other sentiments, but please be nice. ^_^ Actually, elitist isn't necessarily a bad thing. If you've found some people of a good degree of skill and knowledge and are exclusive with that, then it's perfectly fine. One can even say, well, only certain people can be *our kind* of witch. However when one starts applying these rules outside of one's tradition and claiming that only their kind are true witches, well, they should expect the other witches, born and made, to laugh at them. Not that that's what this thread is trying to do, just a general statement. Even if the original poster is in one of those kinds of groups, she was appealing outside to see how other witches felt... That doesn't see elitist or stand-off-ish to me. eh...

                          Tashi delek!
                          Dawa Lhamo
                          Before you accuse someone of LYING, please read this first.

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                          • #28
                            The "good blue blood" is a metaphor. Only that. Such as someone might say that one has music running through their veins. It's funny how it suddenly becomes elistist.

                            And to clarify further, I'm not meaning wicca, or any religious aspect thereof. I'm saying witch as one who can change the world. One who can manipulate energy, through whatever means. One that has some ability with the sight (seeing, hearing, feelings, smelling, whatever.) And such Anyone can be Wiccan. I'm not contesting that.

                            I'm guessing, though, that it all comes down to personal semantics as to what is what.
                            -Kendrah


                            'We shall not cease from exploration
                            And the end of all our exploring
                            Will be to arrive where we started
                            And know the place for the first time.'
                            -T.S. Eliot

                            "Oh, no no no, it was too cold always
                            (Still the dead one lay moaning)
                            I was much too far out all my life
                            And not waving but drowning."
                            -Stevie Smith

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by Temptation
                              But that's not the case, because we all have the "talent", it's just that they're going about it the wrong way.
                              Allow me to present an alternative view from a guy without a magical bone in his body...

                              Ever drop a brick onto muddy ground? Know the sound it made? That sound - a wet, dull, muffled *thud* - is a pretty good metaphor for my own early, clumsy attempts at any sort of magic at all. I really don't think it was a matter of me doing it wrong, I really just didn't have it. I have about as much magical ability, sixth sense, and energy talent as a box of rocks.

                              Which is fine, we're not all given the same talents. It's be a boring world if we were.

                              Edit: Does this extend to me believing in "natural witches"? I dunno, probably not, at least not more than folks having a bit of natural inclination toward certain things over others.
                              Last edited by Sleet; April 15th, 2005, 12:41 PM.
                              - Sleet

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by Dawa Lhamo
                                I'm not sure what you're getting at, RubyRose, can you explain it another way, perhaps?

                                Tashi delek!
                                Dawa Lhamo
                                I'll give it a shot.

                                Okay, saying your a witch or that you practice witchcraft or paganism, may all be well and good, but if you don't believe in what witchcraft or paganism stand for then its useless.
                                Having a talent for Witchcraft ...!? I'm sorry but I don't know how that works. Sure you could be skilled in tarot reading or runes or what have you, but first you have to learn the technique. Learning something takes time and practice. Once you've learnt the basics, well anything is possible, and then its merely about perfecting the skill.

                                Saying things like, 'oh your a natural witch' to me only means you've got talent. Which simply boils down to the fact that you're either a fast learner, or you've had lost of practice.

                                Okay, I could ramble on further but I'll probably only aid in confusing myself and others, if I haven't done that already.

                                Bendithion,
                                RubyRose


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                                That's the thing about magic. There's always consequences. Always.

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