I am absolutely confident in saying that the study and practice of magic can Make Things Better.
At a minimum, it is an opportunity to explore a wide and wondrous world of ancient cultures and contemporary philosophies, learn new skills and share in exciting experiences. Many find more, discovering profound personal truths, beliefs and practices that both reflect and shape their lives. And if absolutely nothing else, you’ll come across lots of great trivia for pub quizzes and parties (including the origins of ‘trivia’, for example).
What magic will not do is provide any kind of quick fix to instantly transform your life into whatever version of it you want, or think it should be (#SorryNotSorry). That’s not because of the (hopefully obvious) distinction between Hollywood depictions of spells, glamours and hexes. Nor is it necessarily because of some deeply spiritual philosophy around not mucking about with destiny, fate, karma and so on (although in some cases that may be an important consideration).
For me, it’s because the knowledge and techniques that form the core and foundations or magic require a combination of understanding and artistry that, like most things worth having, can only come with a degree of dedication, effort and, yes, hard work. I’m not talking about spending decades slaving away in isolation and abstinence – there are many forms of magic and practice that are really very accessible to beginners – but expecting to find a spell online one day and have secured a winning lottery ticket, ideal soulmate and perfect health by the next is not realistic. Anyone who purports otherwise is unlikely to prove trustworthy; if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
The real way that magic Makes Things Better is in its pursuit, in the journey, the discovery, in the (sometimes slow) accumulation of information and insight and wisdom and skills that transform you and your life bit by bit, until one day you realise you’ve Made Things Better, as if by magic, all by yourself.