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The Venerable Magic 8 Ball


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#1 Grymdycche

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Posted 24 September 2008 - 12:36 AM

Okay, so some of you are definitely think I've gone out to lunch, but - have you ever used a "Magic 8 Ball" for divining a simple "yes/no" question and taken it seriously?
I've got one from years back, and didn't use it that much, but over the past two years, I swear, that thing gives me some uncannily appropriate, well-worded answers to the questions I ask. There are 20 variations total.

When you think about it, what's the difference between an 8ball- a set of answers on a multifaceted die suspended in liquid - and markings on a deck of cards, staves, bones or wood? Or the pattern of tea leaves left on the bottom of a cup, the formation of clouds, the movement of the heavens, or even a sheep's entrails? The web which guides destiny is going to be evident in all workings; toys and games aren't exempt from feeling the effects of the working universe.

My current thinking is, in divination the witch or divinator is merely interpreting signs, and the role of the media of divination, be it cards, bones, tea leaves, or rocks - is minimal - fate is doing the real work here, not the cards or bones themselves, nor even, to a lesser degree, the witch.
Wyrd creates interconnected, ever flowing marks on everything, and by examining those patterns, we can deduce the probability of events and influences unfolding around us; in other words, the "evidence".
I look at it like forensics - you could even call it metaphysical forensics, or even just metaforensics, which I kinda like. ;)

How well one interprets the signs is certainly indicative of the witch's skill. Divination doesn't come from the witch, per se; but having a degree of psychic ability certainly helps in the interpretation of the "metaforensic evidence".

Tarot cards also originated as a game, not a magical tool. Contrary to popular belief, they did not originate in Egypt, they didn't even precede modern playing cards; card historians assert that tarot cards were invented afterward - and the 22 major arcana were added, not dropped from a preexisting tarot.
So playing cards and Tarot both started out as games. Both are used today as serious divination tools. The Oujia board is also game (though it didn't originate as one), and many people take it deadly serious. Perhaps some media are more effective than others, but I think for simple yes/no questions, the magic 8 ball is probably as good as just about any other method.
Try it, you may be surprised. It's amazed me a number of times.
Or am I just going goofy? :D

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#2 Twisted_Angel

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Posted 24 September 2008 - 12:58 AM

Hey Grym,

I tend to agree with you on your thoughts on the magic 8ball. It seems, to me, as useful as pendulums and cards, black mirrors and other tools for divination and scrying. Sometimes when all I seek is a yes/no/maybe, the cards are simply too much information!

At any rate, I have a magic 8ball that actually sits on my station at work (appropriately dubbed 'Amber's Minion') and I use it with frequent regularity. In that, it seems that I can practice even in uniform and I see my fellow soldiers consulting it as well. They fondly inquire of the Minion (or Amber's Whore as it calls itself sometimes :cuckoo:)...and actually listen to it when they have a serious inquiry. Out of a combined crew of nearly 100, a select few know I'm a Witch and have pulled me aside in private confessing they've listened to the 8ball and it hasn't steered them wrong. Poor things, I then explain to them the concepts of divination and scrying and how I go about practicing it and such. However...fact remains...it is another tool, however quaint or 'mainstream' it may be considered.

Bottomline is this: I have a Magic 8 Ball and it is a tool I proudly (and rather publicly) wield! :carrot:

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#3 Cairelle

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Posted 24 September 2008 - 01:48 AM

Divination knows no limitations on form, you know.

If it works for you, then by all means use it! :wink:

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#4 Anthony

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Posted 24 September 2008 - 02:33 AM

I still flip coins for yes/no type questions. The magic 8-ball is really good for more complex sorts of questions.

I would call that being very resourceful on your behalf. Anything can be used for divination.

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#5 Michele

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Posted 24 September 2008 - 03:39 AM

This brings back to the question is the power in the witch, the tools, or the spirits/gods a particular witch may work with? I know there are some who think the power is only through the god they work with (I think it was Roy Cochrane who said that, but I could be WAY off... I suck at remembering who said what). I personally believe that intent is with the witch, as is the power. But on the other hand I do believe power can be "aided" by a spirit and/or god (if you choose to call it that) one works with.
I have wondered if any feel the runes have a power of their own???? And if yes, did this come with the runes themselves, or did they gain it over time being used for the same thing with the same meaning for so long by so many??????


#6 Deb13b

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Posted 24 September 2008 - 07:00 AM

Some people would probably laugh but yeah, it's as valid as anything else. I had one as a kid, I remember it being scarily accurate.

#7 Grymdycche

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Posted 24 September 2008 - 05:22 PM

I don't know if this really matters (except from a statistical point of view), but out of the 20 possible answers on a Magic 8 Ball, 10 are affirmative responses, 5 are negative, and 5 are undecided ("Reply hazy, try again").
So statistically ( I think - I'm not that good with statistics actually), it seems negative responses would come up less than affirmative ones, but like I said, the answers are usually pretty good anyway.
I'm glad I got so much agreement here, I really thought I was gonna get pegged for a flake! lol

Here's a funny example of how appropriate the answers can be.
Several weeks ago, I asked it if the new mountain bike I just bought (for my birthday) was going to be a good one, and serve me well (as opposed to being a junker that constantly breaks or needs adjustment or something).
The answer came back, "Outlook Good".
Here's what tickled me about that response-
The bike I bought is made by Diamondback - and the model is the "Outlook". lol!
That was a 20 to 1 chance.
It gets even better. My son also has an 8 Ball. I asked him to get it, and I asked his 8 ball the same thing.

-and got the same answer again!!! I freaked (sorta)
Now that's magic.

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#8 Dark Phoenix

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Posted 24 September 2008 - 05:35 PM

lol thats pretty cool...I used to have one of those...I dont know where it is though.
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#9 Mountain Witch

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Posted 24 September 2008 - 06:33 PM

I remember seeing those as a kid - I think one of my friends had one. At the time, I wasn't real impressed but it's also "what works for you".

Like Anthony, I use a coin for a yes/no. Otherwise I use the runes. And no, Michele, I don't think they have a power of their own. Like any other tool, it's the "spirits" (or Universe or ...) and the mind of the diviner that make them work.


#10 Grymdycche

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Posted 24 September 2008 - 08:55 PM

I think I said it already, but I don't give the divination media itself too much credit. I mean, I have a deep respect for my runes and treat them accordingly, but I don't think they have any inherent power. In the particular case of runes, which were said to be given to man by Odin, I think the fact that their markings are all straight lines - and no curves - is a clue to their more practical, humble origins, since it's much easier to carve out straight lines than curves. A God would not be encumbered by such trifling details. (Semitic and Enochian-Angelic type scripts are rife with curves)
They're just tools, IMHO. (Though very good ones!)

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9 out of 10 string theory physicists agree: 'Nothing Rests; Everything Moves; Everything Vibrates'' -the Kybalion.

#11 Scott

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Posted 24 September 2008 - 10:06 PM

Greetings All

Yep used em with good results. At the moment I am sold on dice (which is not surprising given what a goer this work season is shaping up to be!) and being reminded of my old herd omen work so I guess that will be needed this year too ...

I used to know one girl who used to skry in ice cream with hundreds and thousands in it. She was rarely wrong.

Diination is like that I find. The powers exist, the currents exist, they have effects and any randomised event can show which way the wind is blowing. I find that this simple stance has worked very well and have tested it with several systems I have put together. One of my simpler ones was four markers with the winds on it ... oh hell tell you what if I can scrounge up a moment today I'll lob it in the section over yonder.

loll

Randomisation at work!

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#12 Michele

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Posted 24 September 2008 - 10:14 PM

Scrying in ice cream? Ohhhh I could get into that!!!! Haagen Diaz mint chocloate chip for "yes," rum raisin for "no," carmel cone for "not sure, try the other two flavours again"..... the possibilities are endless!!!!!!!!

#13 Startella

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Posted 25 September 2008 - 02:34 PM

Scrying in ice cream? Ohhhh I could get into that!!!! Haagen Diaz mint chocloate chip for "yes," rum raisin for "no," carmel cone for "not sure, try the other two flavours again"..... the possibilities are endless!!!!!!!!


So funny Michele and tasty! Love it. As for the 8 ball, I see no reason why it can not be used. Never had one though. I see it being no different than cards, tarots, runes, whatever

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#14 Scott

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Posted 25 September 2008 - 10:24 PM

Greetings All

One thing I forgot to mention about the use of the 8 Ball....

It is a thing I like about this and other forms of work that would commonly be scoffed at and it is that it forces the operative to focus on the work.

There are lots of fairly outre forms of ritual, practice and tools about these days and while they can be huge amounts of fun and change the outlook in interesting ways and work well in some cases ..... it is easy through such things to lose sight of important factors. Through such things we often become dogmatic and self important without reason seeking forms of validity that we used to call "rich boys excuses".

My first lesson in this was from my first mentor when he socked me a copy of the Necronomicon. I asked him if the copy and rumours were true. He said: "Who cares? It works - that is the ONLY sort of validity that matters to a real witch."

Such things also tend to remind us about the importance of keeping secrets - even if it is only so you don't have to waste time in damn fool justifications! lol That is at least one reason for several practices I make regular use of that most would snigger at! hehehe

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#15 DeviousMousie

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Posted 25 September 2008 - 11:42 PM

I agree, Scott. It's really to get caught up in trying to justify something either to yourself or to others to make it seem legit. It could be the silliest thing in the world but what does it matter, so long as it works for someone, right?

Personally I'm still trying to get over that block, so to speak It's really difficult, haha! :brickwall:


#16 Grymdycche

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Posted 26 September 2008 - 12:07 AM

Right? I mean, CSI (The Committee for Skeptical Inquiry - http://www.csicop.org/) would have an absolute field day with this.. lol.. but I know it works, and it's already demonstrated itself way beyond mere chance or coincidence (and I tend to be skeptical myself).

Actually, I should apologize for the excessive verbiage and long drawn out justification I gave in the original post, but it was good exercise for my own mind to be able to put it in writing.

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#17 DeviousMousie

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Posted 26 September 2008 - 03:44 AM

Ya know, it shouldn't surprise me that there's a bunch of people dedicated to this, but it does, haha. Maybe I should pick up an issue only to decide to chuck it later.