The Magick of Language
We never experience “thoughts,” “feelings,” “perceptions,” “intuitions,” “sensations,” “body symptoms.” etc. We invent those categories after the fact. What we experience, nanosecond by nanosecond, consists of continuous reactions of the organism-as-whole to the environment-as-a-whole, including incoming verbal signals from others in the same predicament. These incoming verbal signals also produce in us reactions of the organism-as-a-whole sometimes culminating in a return signal.
That much seems simple neurobiological savvy.
But suppose I point a shamanic death-bone at you and recite a curse? Or utter a Magick Word that alarms and threatens you as much as a simple “fuck” threatens simple Methodists? We never “know” organismically all that we know theoretically. Parts of us remain simian, childish, inertial, mechanical etc.
Illustration: Consciously and will-fully remind yourself that you can tell the difference between a “movie” and “real life.” Then go to see the latest ketchup-splattered horror/slasher classic and pay attention to how many times the director magically tricks you into real gasps, internal or overt cringe-reflexes, , dry mouth, clutching [seat-rails, coke can, companion’s arm etc.] or other symptoms of minor but real [polygraph-diagnosable] anxiety and short-term near-panic, sometimes verging on vomit-reflex.
Illustration #2: With the same conscious and will-full reminders about the difference between “movies” and “real life,” attend a hard-core XXX porno flick. Observe how long it takes before physiological responses indicate that parts of you at least have lost track of that distinction.
None of this represents trivial cases only. The role of magick in all language transactions has very concrete and exhilarating/terrifying implications; viz.
Well-documented case of a man literally killed by a shaman’s curse and a “death-bone” — The Psychobiology of Mind-Body Healing, by Ernest Lawrence Rossi, Norton, 1988, page 9-12.
Equally well-documented case of another man, a cancer patient, “miraculously” blessed by remission and recovery due to a placebo [with tumors shrunk to half their previous size], then cursed back into critical condition when learning of deaths of others receiving the same placebo — same book, page 3-8.
Whoever speaks a sentence to another human may pronounce a blessing or a curse without even intending this.
Remember this the next time you get angry.