Category Archives: atheism

Atheism and Magic

Recently, on a elist that I am member of, in a discussion about magical ethics, the conversation turned to the idea of religion, faith, and their relationship to magic. In the discussion, the subject was brought up of how a friend was a declared atheist, but believed in ghosts, because in her twenties, she lived in a severely haunted house and experience that reality first hand. So, while she didn’t believe in God or gods, she did believe in ghosts, and spirits. This puzzled quite a few people, but it seemed perfectly reasonable to me. I also indicated that an atheist could also practice magic, and also not necessarily believe in God or gods. Quite a few people seemed puzzled by this.

The example I that used is my awareness of the magical practices belong to various Buddhists sects, while many Buddhists that I have met, have indicated that they are atheists. That is, they don’t believe in God or gods. To be perfectly honest however, I have never met a magical practitioner who is also a serious atheist. I also pointed out that someone can be an atheist, and belief in spiritual realities, while someone who only believes in material source, causation and reality, will most likely be an atheist as well, but being an atheist and being a hard materialistic empiricist is not the same thing.
As far as the Buddhist thing goes, I am a total outsider, and I really have no other claim then a few experience with friends and acquaitances who have identified as Buddhist. I have also never met anyone who was an atheist, and also practiced magic (of any kind per se). I myself, am not an atheist either, so for the most part, I am playing the devil’s advocate here. But this lead me to the thought and decision to ask the question. Is there anyone, or has anyone ever met anyone who was a declared atheist, but also practiced magic of some kind or another? I would really like to know, and I rather hope I can meet a person like this, because I really want to ask him and converse with him how he espouses his cosmology, and how magic works for him