The Witch’s bookshelf: Instant Magick

Christopher Penczak’s ‘Instant Magick’

Instant magick Christopher Penczak

One word: visualization. This book is full of various visualizations intended to aid you in practicing your craft on the fly.

The title ‘Instant Magick’ makes it sound as though one should get out their mixing bowl, and wala! But spoiler alert, instant magick isn’t quite like that. Instead instant magick focuses on performing magic without the traditional tools, or anything physical and tangible for that matter, simply the direction of your own energy.

The first part of the book is great for those who are new to magic, or even just curious. It is a well written and researched overview of the commonalities in traditions. You get the sense that Penczak is well studied and well practiced. I enjoyed this first section immensely, even learned a few odd things.

The spells that follow in the middle of the book are for various small things, because he makes quite clear that the bigger the difference you want to make, the more time and effort  you have to spend. Most spells are intensely practical, if not a little silly feeling at first. Like the ‘find a parking spot’ spell, or the spell to make a computer work. Penczak puts great emphasis on not just using this as a Grimoire, but on learning the theory and practice, and crafting your own spells. The spells in the book serve as a good templet to help you understand the nature of his work and ideas. They also come chalk full of information about things like which Gods and Goddess are best to call upon for certain spells, or which colors or planetary influences work best ect. It borders on a compendium.

In fact the entire end of the book is devoted to a more in depth, less Grimoire-like section. You can also find more traditional spellcraft like healing and imbuing objects with your energy. In this section he reminds us constantly that there is no permanent substitute to traditional magic, this is more of a supplement. He does suggest trying to perform a traditional ritual mentally as well, but still only in the context of a supplement.

All in all I found this book an interesting departure from the typical spell books crammed with ingredients that one must obtain. It felt very twenty first century. So if you are looking for a slightly fresher take, you might enjoy this book. Penzczak’s readable and conversational style also makes this a good book for beginners in the craft.

How about you, do you ever practice without ritual and ritual tools?

How I accidentally met other pagans

I’m a solitary witch. I was also raised with a heavy emphasis on the stigma of witchcraft of any kind, (AKA it’s all Satanism you know). So when I converted, it wasn’t exactly a celebration, much less a publicly disclosed decision.

Now honestly being a solitary witch doesn’t bother me much at all, I’m not looking for a coven or anything, at least not at this point in my life. I am content here with my books and my exploration (which was tentative at first). But every once in a while it’s nice to know that you’re not the only one in the world who doesn’t subscribe to some brand of the Abramic religion.

So how does one find evidence of other pagans, without putting a huge sign on your back that says ‘hey I’m a witch, wanna try converting me?’ (to my Christian friends, I’m glad you’re Christian and you’re happy that way, but I wasn’t. Remember my religion is my choice, just like your religion is your choice.)

The bookshelf of course.

I’m a hopeless bookworm. Always collecting various religious books (not just occult), and my favorite place to do this is at the local thrift shop. Most of them have a nice section full of either general religious books, or if you’re lucky an alternative religion section.

That’s how I met a few pagans, and funny thing was, we didn’t even have to say it. It was more like- oh did you see this book? I wonder if all these cards are here. No, I have way too many of those manuals at home, they suffice me well enough.

I guess sometimes you find light in the most unexpected places in life.

Have you ever met someone who believes in the same religion as you somewhere you didn’t expect?