This article is more than four years old and was last updated in March 2020.
The myth of black magic and the dark arts has persisted within many cultures for generations, could this be a clue to the truth that dark magic is still being practiced in secret by those in the know?
This question has been debated for a long time. Skeptics are convinced that magic doesn't exist, but believers say it's impossible to fully disprove something that is being suppressed from public knowledge.
There are plenty of people around the world who would still describe themselves as witches and wizards, and while they might practice the occult, they're not masters of the dark arts. They are usually wiccan, an ancient form of witchcraft of Pagan origin.
Black magic is something much more sinister, which is said to be practiced by secretive cults, private groups, the wealthy and the influential.
What Is Black Magic?
According to folklore, black magic has been performed since ancient times. You might associate dark magic with hexes, curses, charms, voodoo and love potions, but occultists argue that there is no distinction between light and dark magic, saying that it depends on the heart of the magician.
It's sometimes also known as high (white) magic and low (black) magic, or wiccans might use the terms good or bane, which is an old English word meaning a source of harm or ruin.
A practitioner who is inherently evil, selfish or manipulative might use magic to benefit themselves, it is for this reason that many refuse to use the term black magic and white magic. Those who believe in magic say that the terms black and white magic are simply labels, magic itself is a neutral force.
So, basically we're talking about real magic that has been used for evil and selfish purposes. Magic has been defined many different ways by people over the years, perhaps most notably by the British occultist Aleister Crowley, who called it a "science and art that provokes Change in conformity with the will", and that "all intentional acts are acts of magic." He saw magic as a third way between religion and science.
Crowley was a member of many secret societies and chose to use an old archaic spelling of the word "magik" instead of the modern spelling. He wrote that humans, by nature, have the capacity to produce changes in their environment, and that the only requirement to prompt this was to follow one's own path; that is, to do as we wish.
Crowley practice a type of Western magic known as Salomonic magic, derived from King Solomon's method, which he supposedly used to summon the spirits that helped him build his temple. Salomonic magic is the type of magic that is often represented by the use of spells, incantations and rites, and it is often referred to as black magic.
There's another train of thought on dark magic, and that's that all magic is black. Many religions don't just condone black magic, but all magic in all forms. In fact magic is deemed to be a big sin, not just because of the chanting and Satanic connections, but also because it is driven by greed and selfishness, or involves focussing hate, jealousy and negativity on a fellow human.
Our modern-day understanding of what white magic and black magic is has been clouded by the influence of popular culture. Elements of Satanism, the worship of the Devil or demons. Satanism is often grouped together with black magic practices, which only seek to invoke evil, rather than worship it.
Another example is voodoo, which has its own distinct history and traditions that have little to do with the traditions of modern witchcraft.
Anton LaVey, author of the Satanic Bible said, "white magic is supposedly utilised only for good or unselfish purposes, and black magic, we are told, is used only for selfish or 'evil' reasons. Satanism draws no such dividing line. Magic is magic, be it used to help or hinder. The Satanist, being the magician, should have the ability to decide what is just, and then apply the powers of magic to attain his goals."
It's said that black magic can be used for literally anything, to bring you wealth, health, love, or to bring pain, suffering and even death to someone else. For this reason it's said that black magic is rooted in greed, jealousy, lust and envy. As well as performing dark magic spells and rituals for personal gain and vengeance, these supernatural powers might also include summoning or calling on demons, or any entity that comes from below and not above.
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Types Of Black Magic
Photo: © Robin Sloan
True Name Spells
The belief that knowing someone's true name is a powerful piece of knowledge in witchcraft, it allows you to control them. This isn't the person's given name, but the name of the soul and everyone's is unique. You can use a spell to find out someone's true name, once that name is spoken you will gain power over that person.
Living forever is a common wish, so it's no surprise that within the magic community spells have been written and rituals performed in order to try to achieve this. The reason this is classed as black magic is because an immortality ritual is said to either require killing the person before they can live on, or draw on the life energy from someone else in order to sustain the spell.
This is any magic which is related to death, either through divination of entrails, or the act of raising the dead body. It also includes the practice of communicating with the dead, especially in order to predict the future. Rituals could be quite elaborate, involving magic circles, wands, talismans, and incantations.
Curses & Hexes
A curse can be as simple as wishing something bad would happen to someone, or as complicated as performing a complex ritual to ensure that someone dies.
Does Black Magic Really Exist?
Photo: © George Stephens
Whether magic, or indeed black magic, is real or not is something that's been debated for generations. Like with many aspects of the occult and paranormal, science cannot explain magic and categorises it in the realms of pseudoscience. Skeptics would argue that while science has not yet been able to explain everything, it has proven that magic has no basis in reality.
When supernatural claims are tested, they tend to fall apart. British parapsychology lecturer, Susan Blackmore, who has investigated and tested many of these claims, says "I found no psychic phenomena, only wishful thinking, self-deception, experimental error and, occasionally, fraud."
However, believers think that black magic is a science in its own right, albeit an undiscovered science, said to be the science of elementals. They say that if you believe black magic, then it can and does exist. Because magic is a science, it can be learnt, it doesn't require you to be a spiritual or gifted person to perform it.
Some skeptics might also agree with the statement that if you believe black magic, then it can and does exist, but their looking at the statement from a more psychological standpoint. They think that black magic only works on the mentally weak, not because it actually works but because it effects them psychologically. If a spell or ritual has been used against someone, then they may become scared, worried and paranoid, and attribute everything negative that happens to them to magic.
It's similar to the nocebo effect, which has been observed in clinical trials. It's the opposite of the more well known placebo effect. The nocebo effect can cause patients to experience symptoms when they are lead to believe that their may be a side-effect as a result of taking a harmless drug, which actually doesn't produce any side-effects at all.
Despite this debate, the myth has persisted for centuries and there's clues hidden throughout the history of human civilisation, from the tales of King Solomon to the rumours that circulated after the Second World War about Adolf Hitler's involvement in the occult. Although there's no solid evidence, it seems that much of the Nazi mythos has its roots in occult symbology. The swastika itself predates Nazi Germany and has been used across Europe in witchcraft for generations.
Believers in the Nazi's occult practices claim they were using dark magic as a form of mind control using Satanic techniques to make their targets believe that pain is pleasure and pleasure is pain, it eventually breaks the victim down so they can no longer tell the difference between the two.
Is A Global Cult Keeping Black Magic From The Public?
One man was so convinced that dark magic was being practiced by the global elite, that he dedicated his life to researching these secret cults and he was due to expose a global dark magic ring at a conference in Warsaw, Poland in 2016. Unfortunately, after travelling to Poland for the event, he was killed in mysterious circumstances.
Max Spiers was a 39-year-old, UFO expert and paranormal investigator, his friends and family claim that he was murdered to prevent him from exposing his findings. They claimed that he died vomiting a mysterious black liquid just days after texting his family back in the UK saying he feared for his life.
Max's girlfriend, Sarah Adams, says that the investigator had knowledge of a secret black magic group which he believed was made up of wealthy and influential members. Following his death, she told the press "he was going to expose black magic. He was going to expose some of the stuff he was working on involving political leaders and celebrities."
According to Sarah, the group of fellow researchers that Max had met up with in Warsaw were doing "very dark black magic and satanic rituals to 'deprogramme' him and get rid of demons." She claims that he'd told her that they had given him something that had put him in a coma for two days, two days after this he was dead.
Max's mum said, "I think Max had been digging in some dark places and I fear that somebody wanted him dead."
Polish authorities concluded that he died from natural causes but his mum claims no post-mortem was ever carried out in Poland. Kent County Council, which carried out a post-mortem on the body when it was returned to the UK, told the Daily Mail that it had reached an "inconclusive" result.
Max believed that secret societies made up of some the world's wealthiest and most powerful people maintain their influence over the public by using black magic. These secret societies, informally fall under the label of the "New World Order" and are said to hide behind legitimate organisation such as the CIA and large pharmaceutical companies.
The groups' members includes politicians, corporate executives, military heads, intelligence chiefs, international bankers and influential celebrities. These elite members are said to have sold their souls to the Devil, and in exchange they are being rewarded with power and money.
They carry out their dark arts in the form of satanic rituals, sacrifice, sex and death. These practices are believed to raise the black magician's energy, allowing them to manipulate the electromagnetic energy of the world around them for their own gain. For example they can use this energy to psychically influence people's decisions, overwhelm them with negative energy or brainwash an individual.
Max believed that Nazis who survived WWII and avoided being imprisoned went underground and joined forces with other organisations from around the world to further their research into dark magic. But, it wasn't just Nazi Germany that dabbled with the dark arts, during the Cold War, Soviet scientists developed devices to harness and amplify psychic power, and then release it on command either mechanically or electromagnetically.
It was believed that when the energy is redistributed from the device, it can affect a person's psyche, memory or attention span, it can cause physical fatigue, disorientation and even alter a person's behaviour. It can even affect a whole group of people.
The most sinister of these claims was that the Soviets had developed a thought amplifying device which was capable of sending negative energy to the US president. According to reports, the CIA learned that the Soviets were using powerful psychotronic generators to send harmful thought transmissions, directed at the US embassy in Moscow as well as major US cities, including Washington D.C.
The Defense Intelligence Agency took this threat of "psi warfare" very seriously, and had their own secret project called MKUltra which investigated mind control and brainwashing. The project conducted its illegal experiments on human subjects from 1953, until the project was halted in 1973.
Although officially MKUltra ceased 25 years ago, Max believed that around two million Americans are under the influence of the project and those that aren't are under a similar form of control under the power of the media which spews out government propaganda and false history.
How Is Dark Magic Kept Secret From The Public?
Since medieval times, many magical practices and rituals have been considered evil or irreligious. Witchcraft and esoteric study that went against the church was prohibited and punishable by death.
It's estimated that up to 60,000 people were executed during the witch trials across Europe and the US, most famously during the Salem witch trials.
The peak of witch hunting was during the European wars of religion, climaxing from 1580 to 1630. The witch hunts declined in the early 18th century, prior to the introduction of the British Witchcraft Act of 1735, which made it a crime for a person to claim they had the power to call up spirits, foretell the future, or cast spells.
Is it possible that the conspiracy goes this far back? Could these witches have been slaughtered for their secrets? Did practitioners of the occult know more than they should? And what happened to their books and paraphernalia when they were sentenced?
Real magic, specifically black magic, might have been lost over time after world governments executed practitioners in order to keep these secrets for themselves. If this is true, the truth might now be so well buried that the general public may never know the truth.
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