Thaumaturgy

minordrag

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#1
From Wikipedia:

Thaumaturgy (from the Greek words thaumos meaning "miracle" and ergos meaning "work") is the branch of magic (or "magick", for Crowley fans) that is concerned with the production of real-world, "objective" effects, e.g. "miracles".

While many believe that thaumaturgy is distinguished from theurgy, the branch which concerns itself with purely spiritual matters, this is not always the case. Thaumaturgy deals with producing a desired effect within the material world, but it is not necessarily opposed to or distinct from theurgy in that the material effect produced may simply be a theurgical result caused to emanate downward from the more subtle, spiritual realm into the dense, material sphere. In this way, thaumaturgy may simply be considered as the visual manifestation of theurgy, just as the body is the visual manifestation of the spirit via the mind, as well as its vehicle.

If one is intending to imply that the change produced has no higher effect other than a material effect for the purpose of physical gratification, then it would be more accurate to refer to it as "low magic," in that it lacks any form of higher meaning or significance beyond self gain. High magic would then be used to refer to both theurgy and also thaumaturgy, if this is just a material impression or actualization of spiritual forces or potentials.

This term can be used in conjunction with such emanationist systems as the Kabbalah in order to explain how changes can be wrought in the created, material realm by making subtle changes in the higher, more subtle realms from which practitioners believe that the physical sphere emanates. For instance, practitioners believe that a Magician can, by making slight changes in the world of formation (Olam Yetzirah), such as within the Sephirah of Yesod upon which Malkuth (the material realm) is based and within which all former Sephiroth are brought together, then these alterations would emanate into the world of action (Olam Assiah). This idea is explained in light of the Hermetic Kabbalah and not the traditional Jewish Kabbalistic concepts as expressed within Chassiduth. For more information on Jewish mysticism, go to http://www.chabad.org.
Can someone help explain the intersection between thaumaturgy and coincidence or synchronicity? Does the above definition not stretch the canonical definition of "miracle?"
 

Jerry_B

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#3
Coincidence and syncronicity are, IIRC, more to do with perceived order from randomness, whereas thaumaturgy involves a definite intent.
 

James_H

And I like to roam the land
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#4
In Colin Wilson's "the occult", he cites a couple of cases that might demonstrate that anyone can do healing, if they put their mind to it. I can't remember the name, but one was a former acolyte of Blavatsky's who pretended to be a thaumaturgist, and was somewhat shocked when he began to properly develop these powers! v interesting indeed.
 

Ermintruder

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#5
(I shouldn't be writing this...)

There is remarkably-little mention of thaumatugy on the forum...or of thaums (which I had not connected back to that word)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fictional_elements,_materials,_isotopes_and_subatomic_particles

'Thaum' is defined by Pratchett within the Discworld universe as being "the basic unit of magical strength; it is the amount of magic needed to create one small white pigeon or three normal-sized billiard balls. The Thaum has been shown to be made up of Resons in the Unseen University's High Energy Magic Building".

[A 'reson' is considered by Pratchett to be the fundamental particle making-up the Thaum, in the same sense as the (real)-world quark. Allegedly its name means "thing-ies", and it exists in five "flavours" or types: Up, Down, Sideways, Sex-Appeal and Peppermint]

I always remember being astounded at the audacity of the company Thaumaturgy (UK) Ltd, who used to sell electrically-operated automatic air-freshners for lavatories (amongst other obscure janitorial supplies).

I'd like to think that if commercial miracle-working became a reality, it would extend far beyond air-freshners. But it's nice to know that there is a Pratch-unit, for measurement naming purposes.
 

AlchoPwn

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#6
From Wikipedia:
Can someone help explain the intersection between thaumaturgy and coincidence or synchronicity? Does the above definition not stretch the canonical definition of "miracle?"
Theurgy is using ritual magic for uniting yourself with the divine. Religion is from the Latin Re (again) and Ligio (joined) representing a reunification with the source of creation. The Mass is technically a form of theurgy, and the Church drew on the tradition of theurgy when creating the ritual of marriage in early Christianity (Jesus made no provision for a marriage ritual in his teaching so they had to make one). Thaumaturgy is using ritual magic for other (non-religious) purposes. Thaumaturgy is supposedly very mathematical. Synchronicity is the occurrence of events that appear contextually significant to each other but have no causal relationship. These meaningful coincidences are often cited as the proof that a magical working is either in effect or has been completed. The notion being that in the Kabalah, that one follows the synchronous path of emanations to get the miracle. Psychologists often say this is a product of Confirmation Bias which is the tendency to assume that all outcomes in favor of your beliefs are evidence, while discounting all outcomes that do not conform to this assumption. That particular accusation can cut both ways however, as Jung was wont to demonstrate on occasion to Freud. Hope that helps a bit.
 

Samara78

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#7
In Colin Wilson's "the occult", he cites a couple of cases that might demonstrate that anyone can do healing, if they put their mind to it. I can't remember the name, but one was a former acolyte of Blavatsky's who pretended to be a thaumaturgist, and was somewhat shocked when he began to properly develop these powers! v interesting indeed.
This!
Anyone is capable of healing, compassion and love is all that is required!
 

Samara78

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#8
From Wikipedia:



Can someone help explain the intersection between thaumaturgy and coincidence or synchronicity? Does the above definition not stretch the canonical definition of "miracle?"
I watched a lecture on wikipedia, let's just say, i won't use it. I love the subject matter though!
 
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