Ritual and Illusion

There’s a big difference in the way we’re approaching books, movies and music. So many of us are disillusioned by the entertainment industry today, because we have a different way of thinking about and experiencing art. For most people, this stuff is pure entertainment, a diversion. It exists on the periphery of life.

It’s a little like the difference between magick with a “k” and magic. Magic, as in stage magic or illusion. The movies have primarily been connected to this latter form of magic. After all, film was based upon an optical illusion, the persistence of vision. Orson Welles, the preeminent 20th century auteur, was famously into stage magic. Film was a technologically advanced magic lantern show or campfire.

Contemporary films are made by people who understand magic, but have no clue about magick.

We’re striving to make movies on the basis of another type of magick.

Those of us who approach the movies as magick don’t really care for CGI. CGI is important to people who experience the movies as magic. In fact, we prefer to use simple effects that call attention to themselves as effects. The transformation of everyday objects into art. Again Warhol is a huge inspiration. Warhol was a magician.

Illusion can call attention to itself as illusion. We can recognize it as such and still be stimulated by it. We don’t need to be fooled by it. We enjoy the pageantry.

How is acting magickal? The actor is the basis of all magick, as I see it. First and foremost, to be a magician, or an artist of any kind, one must first be an actor. Orson Welles talks about this.

One of the first magickal lessons is the concept of reality tunnels, as presented by Robert Anton Wilson in Prometheus Rising. He gives the reader exercises to illustrate the concept. Spend the next 3 weeks thinking like a right-wing militia man, consume only right-wing newspapers, magazines, TV. Spend the following three weeks thinking like an ultra left-wing hippie. The point is you have to become this sort of person to really experience it. It’s not just research. It’s also role play. One must sincerely adopt the point of view to the point of almost being blinded by it. One learns that each world view has its bias. And many other things. This is the basis of magick. These are acting exercises.


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