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Names and Magic

To: alt.magick,alt.traditional.witchcraft,alt.pagan.magick,alt.magick.tyagi,alt.magick.chaos,alt.religion.wicca
From: nagasiva 
Subject: Names and Magic
Date: Wed, 29 Oct 2003 18:07:33 GMT

50031029 viii om

"Aetyr"  whines:
#> ...They have assumed a name and call it real...

during my romp with open Wiccan covens we always had a 
Circle Name we used to identify our magical person/energy.
it was presumed by many that this was in some sense more
'real' than the name we were given at birth, and there
was a convention that this intimacy was a gift amongst
the religious community, an insight into the real nature
of the circle-mate we could meet but that others in the
conventional world might not ever encounter.

"Tom" :
# An interesting aspect of magick is naming.

ain't it tho?
many replace their names at initiation, for example.

# What is a "real name"?  Are any names real?  

as it relates to magic, there are tales of real names
for *everything*, which is part and parcel of the thing 
itself. to a certain extent this ties in with stories
about how things *are* words, the cosmos was *created
by speaking*, etc.  this data can be used by the magician 
or witch to manipulate the cosmos if one has somehow
obtained or become privy to that information. fiction
illustrates this best in Le Guin's "Earthsea Trilogy"
and others. modern ceremonial magic that has affection
for Jewish mysticism and ancient languages aspires to it.

# Which names are not real?

those put on to deceive or opaque rather than to reveal.

# Could "real name" be an oxymoron?

it sure could. 'real' may be the thing itself, the name
may get in the way of an encounter with said thing. 

# Is it possible to change one's "real name"?  Why or why not?

fundamental shifts in identity, social role, and general
behavioural repertoire are opportunities for such changes,
and some select that time to reformat their sociopersonal
referent. effectively that name which most accurately
reflects the being in question (an ideal) can fluctuate,
requiring a new identifier. typically this occurs during
times of reorientation or the adoption of new social roles.


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