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The Real Magic Paradox


“The Real Magic Paradox”
“Not all tales of Enchantment are foolish ones (8),” Georyn tells his brother in Sylvia Engdahl’s
Enchantress from the Stars. In the Enchanted Forest, the two are in search for magic with which to
defeat the Dragon that has come to plague the land. They have turned to the young and beautif ul
Enchantress to help them. The Enchantress is full of knowledge of the universe, and Georyn wants to
learn it all. But the Enchantress’ instructions seem like a paradox. How could Georyn defeat the Dragon
if he must give up the one thing he thought was necessary to destroy it? The Enchantress’ response is
this: “Often times what looks like a paradox is merely a thing that cannot be understood by means of
our present knowledge (161).” Many times humans deem certain happenings as supernatural because
they do not understand them. Later, however, these things are often proved natural , and the term
“supernatural” is incorrect because the term infers that it cannot possibly be explained or understood
by humans ever. Another common misconception is the nature of magic. Magic has been labeled
“supernatural” based on the current understanding of it; this, in itself, is a paradox because the
permanent label has been placed on a temporary understanding of it. In this way, magic is not a
supernatural occurrence.
Real magic is only another name for sciences beyond our current comprehension. The magic in
the physical, tangible sense has been rejected from the scientific atmosphere because science likes
rules. When something breaks or does not fit inside the rules of sci ence, people label it as supernatural,
or a miracle. Why not, instead, try to find out how it happened? The problem is that people have such a
limited idea of the meaning of natural. For example, in the Victorian era, Lord Kelvin, a friend of the
famous Sir Isaac Newton, declared “heavier than air” machines impossible for flight. However, modern
people now have commercial airline jets, emergency helicopters, military fighter jets, and rockets. If the
brilliant Lord Kelvin were to witness our modern flight, he would label it as “magic” because it seemed
absurd to him. Even the scientist who discovered the key to the atomic bomb dismissed the idea of it as
impossible because the atom is so small. Yet many countries now have nuclear weapons, aka Atomic
bombs. The great Einstein even wrote a paper about how black holes could not possibly exist ; NASA
currently has pictures of black holes in space. If progress were impossible, people would not have gotten
where they are. In this way, the superstitions of yesterday are the basics of science today; and the
superstitions of today will someday become the basics of science in the future.
Furthermore, real magic is the basis for faith. People have labeled magics of the mind as
religious because both magic and the god(s) have the need for faith. If a person did not believe a tree
would grow, he would never plant it. In this way, magic is not religious; instead, it is a way to explain
something in which people have had faith. When a person is given a seed and is told that something as
miraculous as a tree will grow from that seed, that person is given a choice. If he throws it out and puts
no faith in planting it, the chance for magic has been forgotten. However, if the person has faith and
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