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chrisrkline
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Bilwonder, you still seem to be saying that Whit's argument is that all lies (syllogisms with at least one false or missing premise) is the same as magic. That is not true.

So look at a real effect. You are holding the one blue card in a deck of red. This card is the same as an earlier card selected by the spectator. That blue card is clearly dropped to the floor and the spectator puts their foot on it. A second card is freely, and I mean freely, selected. The spectator picks the card up that is under their foot and it has changed to the second selection.

While this trick is going on, issues of entertainment, psychology, theater, etc, all play a necessary role in this effect. The magician must keep those in mind. But he must also present the syllogism with the embeded lie (the blue four of clubs is put under my foot. The magician never touches it after that. When I look at it later it has changed to the same suite and value of a second selcted card. It must be magic--but it can't be magic--there is no solution.)

Your example would not be magic, obviously, because there is a solution to the problem, mainly that maybe the premise should be not that if a car has low milage it is like new, but that if a car is new it has low milage. This is not a quibble. Not all lies are magic, because, in most lies, there is a solution to the dillema (My husband said he was at work, but gee I saw him come out of my girlfriends house. Hmm is it magic? Did he teleport? Gee maybe he just lied.) The husband does not convince the wife he is at work--she trusts. When Copperfield teleports he must convince because otherwise we know it is a lie and it is not magic.
Chris
Kenn Capman
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"Using words to describe magic is like using a screwdriver to cut roast beef."
- Tom Robbins -

Just what ran through my mind as I finish reading this topic from the beginning after being away for a few months.

*whew!*
"The thermometer of success is merely the jealousy of the malcontents."
- Salvador Dali -
Whit Haydn
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Quote:
On 2006-05-04 12:28, Bilwonder wrote:
Syllogistic Magic
"Magic is a valid syllogism with at least one missing or untrue premise.
Every magic trick required a lie, and a syllogism or argument that proves the lie.

Let's make magic!

The lie: This car is like new!

The syllogism with an untrue premise to prove the lie:

New cars have low mileage..
This cars shows low mileage.
Therefore this car is like new!

When the car breaks down, "it's Magic" and you experience an "reverie of wonder."

(suppressed "secret" information: The odometer has rolled over twice!)

"I don't think we need that "something else" for there to be magic."

Maybe the premise was too good.
How about, "Hey bebe, This wine is just a soft drink!"
All soft drinks are sweet and bubbly.
This is sweet and bubbly.
This is a soft drink!"
And when you get home, the "magic" happens!


The syllogisms you use are invalid. Magic generally uses valid arguments that have untrue premises. Here is the explanation from my book "Chicago Surprise."

Quote:
All magic is based on creating a logical argument in the spectator’s mind. The argument is valid but false--the premises on which the argument is based are untrue.

If we can get the audience to agree step by step with each premise of the argument, even the false ones, we have created a sort of illogical box or prison from which escape is difficult.

Getting agreement to a premise is sometimes done verbally, through patter, sometimes visually. The magician looks up after a pass with a coin, as if to say, “You with me?” That may be all it takes to get agreement.

There needs to be a point at each important procedure of the routine—the ones which make up the argument the performer wants to present—in which the performer lets the audience assess and agree with what has just happened. We want the audience to remember these premises in the argument, and to forget others.

The argument is constructed on the steps in procedure that the performer allows the audience to remember. The false premises are often important steps that the performer has helped the audience to ignore, dismiss, or forget.

For example:

I placed a coin in my left hand. (False)
I closed my hand. (True)
You never took your eyes off my hand. (True)
I didn’t do anything that could make the coin leave my hand. (True)
I snapped the fingers of my right hand. (True)
When I opened my hand, the coin was gone. (True)
Therefore, when I snapped my fingers, the coin must have de-materialized in my hand. (False Conclusion--the lie that has just been proved.)

By agreeing to each step in this argument, including the first False one, the audience is forced to agree with the conclusion. But they know the conclusion is impossible. The result is a feeling of cognitive dissonance—“I know there is no such thing as magic/There is no other explanation.”

The more persuasive the argument, and the deeper the agreement to each premise; the more convincing will be the impression of magic.

The job of the magician is to trap the spectator in this logical conundrum. The result of this is a peculiar mental excitation—a burr under the saddle of the mind.

If the operation is performed correctly, the patient will not be able to ignore the problem, but will keep coming back to it again and again. His creative problem solving abilities will begin to work overtime as he thinks about both sides of the dilemma.

“What if magic were real? What would that mean?” as well as “There is no
such thing as magic, so what could he have done to make that happen?”

In Chicago Surprise, the main premises that we want the audience to accept are:

A blue-backed Ten of Clubs was placed facedown on the table. (False)
A saltshaker was placed on top of the Ten of Clubs. (False)
You had a free choice of any card in the deck. There was no force. (False)
You chose the Jack of Hearts. (True)
You named your card. (True)
I merely snapped my fingers. (True)
When you turned over the blue-backed card it was the Jack of Hearts. (True)
Therefore, because I snapped my fingers and willed it so, the Ten of Clubs
on the table actually changed into the Jack of Hearts. (False Conclusion)

This fallacious argument is known as one of “False Cause.” Most magic results from this type of false argument. In Chicago Surprise, creating a memorable picture in the mind of the spectator strengthens the agreement that no switch is used:

“The card was under the salt-shaker the whole time.”
“I had my foot on the card the whole time.”
“I had my finger on the card the whole time.”
“The card was in my hand the whole time.”
chrisrkline
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But Mr. Robins used a lot of words, and I assume a lot of practice, skill, training and study--and maybe some philosophical musings of the craft of writing, in order to produce his novels.

I am thinking that maybe our goal might include, after all the study, debates, analysis, creativity, and words, it to produce an effect that the spectator can't adequately describe the magic they witnessed.
Chris
Whit Haydn
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But you certainly want the audience to be able to describe the magic, in fact the whole point is to enlist them as witnesses to the event.

Great magic should be able to be described in one sentence:
Quote:
"I had a free choice of any card, and the back of the card I chose changed to blue, and then, when I put my foot on the blue card and mentally selected another card, The card under my foot then changed to the card I was thinking of!"
Kenn Capman
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Quote:
On 2006-05-04 14:36, Whit Haydn wrote:
But you certainly want the audience to be able to describe the magic, in fact the whole point is to enlist them as witnesses to the event.

Great magic should be able to be described in one sentence:
Quote:
"I had a free choice of any card, and the back of the card I chose changed to blue, and then, when I put my foot on the blue card and mentally selected another card, The card under my foot then changed to the card I was thinking of!"



I agree.

I think Ammar called that 'slogan simple.'

I am just in awe of the fact that we, as artists, work in a medium that is so difficult to quantify or describe, and craft a singular, memorable experience for our audience.

It's pretty heady stuff.
"The thermometer of success is merely the jealousy of the malcontents."
- Salvador Dali -
Dannydoyle
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Whit, I have NEVER once mad a statement about if your magic does or does not live up to standards you haves set forth. So lets make this clear.

I am NOT alone in my opinion, as you have stated you are considering the audience, it is that you don't have a lot of room to explain it here. Fine we agree.


You say if your alone in your opinion it is ok if you are correct. Well with all due respect who are you to decide who is correct or not? Seemed arrogant to me is all.

I have a few opinions. One too many magicians get way too caught up in nonsense like this and loose sight of what we are doing in the end. Entertaining.

Next the audience matters in any definition you wish to create. We agree completly on this point obviously. BTW I do feel without exception your magic lives up to the "audience consideration test" I have set forth, just to clarify.

Lastly and here is where I get in trouble I am afraid. If anyone thinks a person of reason over the age of say 10 really believes things dematerialize and end up in some other location, well then the person the magician is foolnig is himself. People are not stupid. This kind of presupposes they are.

They are thinking reasoning people. ANY definition of magic which includes the audience "belief" in magic really sells them short.

Whit I respect your work, your opinion and wish to stop anyone from thinking the contrary.

I am not saying we run arround going "hey magic is all tricks" I am however saying that we need to consider the audience knows it is a "trick". Sorry for the confussion.
Danny Doyle
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<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
Whit Haydn
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I agree with you, Danny, but you must be missing something I have already said:

"There is no such thing as magic."

Clear enough?

That is one side of the dilemma, and it is every bit as important as the other side to keep firmly entrenched in the spectator's mind. Else, no dilemma.

No dilemma/No cognitive dissonance. No cognitive dissonance/No wonder. No wonder/No magic.

It is no good to convince people that what you are doing is really magic, if they don't know that you are lying.

If they don't believe that "There is no such thing as magic" (or at least that what you are claiming to be magic isn't really magic), there would be no dilemma.

This sort of "proof" would be like "carrying coals to Newcastle" or "selling ice to Eskimos"--you aren't really even a charlatan, merely someone the believers use to legitimize what they already believe is true.

For a presentation to be magic, both sides of the dilemma have to be set up and convincingly supported.

If the spectators believe you when you claim to do magic and then "prove" it, whether through intellectual error or suspension of disbelief, there may be theater, but not magic.

Magic is the question mark--the dilemma itself.
chrisrkline
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Quote:
On 2006-05-04 14:36, Whit Haydn wrote:
But you certainly want the audience to be able to describe the magic, in fact the whole point is to enlist them as witnesses to the event.

Great magic should be able to be described in one sentence:
Quote:
"I had a free choice of any card, and the back of the card I chose changed to blue, and then, when I put my foot on the blue card and mentally selected another card, The card under my foot then changed to the card I was thinking of!"



You are right of course. I said what I meant badly. I was thinking about a spectator trying to accurately describe the actual mental state they have at the moment of magic. But they won't have that mental state unless they can describe the magic.
Chris
roi_tau
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Magic:

Make the impossible looks logical-Sanvart.

When you tear a bill to 2 and the audience ask you to repair it it because you made the impossible to look logical to them.

Have fun
ROi
Jonathan Townsend
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There is more to magic than mere impossibility.

Ask a grade school student what number when multiplied by itself gives a negative number and they will say it's impossible.

Ask an average person if about two hundred thousand miles per hour is as fast as anything can go ever and they will say that's impossible.

Such is mere knowledge, good for bar bets.

Magic requires something more, something willful and something which has an emotional component.

Please... go inside and find the distinctions between mere puzzlement, surprise, bewilderment, delight and perhaps also discover and doubt. There are places to go and things to see once you have some of the landmarks.

As Whit keeps pointing out, magic is not a direct experience or a sentiment, it is a meta-experience. A feeling about how what you are seeing does not match with what you believe.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
tommy
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We are born into a world where invisible forces actually exist and we only know they exist because of their effects on things that we observe. Where one such force exists so another might exist. We might not know it exists simply because we have not observed it’s effects on things.
We, the observers, of the effects of magic demonstrated to us by the magicians, can conclude logically that there is in fact a magic force. We the observers of the effects of magic have no way of knowing real magic from fake. Indeed you magicians might not know a real magician if you saw one.
The magician might tell me it is just a trick. But why should I belief what the magicians tells me? If we the observers can’t believe our own eyes who can we believe?
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
Dannydoyle
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Whit just so we understand I am NOT questioning your ability to entertain an audience. THAT is what I am really saying now more than anything.
Danny Doyle
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<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
Jonathan Townsend
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Interesting Tommy, though I have to admit some concern about your writing of yourself in the plural and also as an observer as opposed to the performer.

Such is the view of muggles. From the performer's side there is the script, props etc and a theatrical production offered for the entertainment of the audience.

Somewhere in the minds of the audience, if we are doing our jobs, comes that mental pingpong between fantasy and reality, where the stories we give them to imagine seem to leak out into shared reality. H. P. Lovecraft was being metaphorical. Smile
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Lee Darrow
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Quote:
On 2006-05-04 12:43, Whit Haydn wrote:
What is the something extra that you think is needed, Bilwonder?

"Here is a coin, it is gone." Magic, no?


Nope. That's taxes.

:lol:

Sorry, I just couldn't resist...!

Lee Darrow, C.H.
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<BR>"Because NICE Matters!"
tommy
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No one can deny the possibility that magic actually exists. It is that possibility that is magic.
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
Whit Haydn
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Danny: I never took any offense at anything you have said, nor did I think you were questioning my performances. I just wanted to point out that I do consider many other ramifications of these issues than the main ones we have been discussing here.

I never take any of these discussions personally, Danny. I appreciate your input.

If I vigorously disagree, it is only because I am so involved in fleshing out and defining my own ideas.

I only care about the issues, and they are very important to me. So I want people to question them and challenge them here. I would rather make sure that I can make myself clear to people, and that my ideas can stand up to heavy criticism here among my friends than after a book is published from the professional critics.

We are here to have fun and talk magic. It is something very silly and very unimportant in the overall scheme of things. It isn't brain surgery. But I still get very passionate about it.
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Whit,
I can think of no one I admire more for thinking out the theory of "working magic" than you.
The detailed descriptions of how you apply theory to your work is a valuable gift to us all. I always learn something. However, when I state I believe your missing something in your "definition of magic," I am not talking about your application. I believe "magic" DOES exist, IF we define it in a way that recognizes a transformational state of mind. I believe the magician imitates what nature already does. From the magic of mirages to quantum physics, in a Jungian way we mirror the universe in our heads. It is this same magic that finds it's way into the magician's hands.

Plato said, "Everything that deceives may be said to enchant"
so I can understand you focusing on the deception and making the resulting state of mind incidental.
You have rightly focused on magic happening in the mind, and therefore it is a "logic" problem. However, I keep repeating, that the logic problem is only a trigger and not the "magic" itself. Perhaps it is minor distinction in the practice or our "art", but it seems important to me. Wonder is "creative confusion," but it is more than that. It is more than just the result of being in a state of deception. You observations on the state of "Wonder" as it applies to magic have been both remarkable and incidental at the same time. I am a humbled student when you speak of technique and application. Yet, I firmly believe in what I'm saying about defining magic, even no one else here seems to understand what I'm saying. Perhaps our art can be reduced to a syllogism. Is this syllogism unique to magic? Should it be entered into logic books as the "Magic Syllogism?" If not, then we share a table with other arts in this matter and it is not the definition of "magic " in itself. Magic is in the state of mind it produces. Other things can produce this state of mind. Magicians have used drugs in some cases to produce the results of "magic."

"Any sufficiently advanced form of magic is indistinguishable ... from technology."
Clarke's Third Law reversed

You presentations are full of magic Whit, but I think your definition doesn't reflect this.

"A work of art is one of mystery,
the one extreme magic;
everything else is either arithmetic or biology. "
Truman Capote

Your definition seems to have reduced "Magic" to a math problem.
It is more than that, and more than all the dressings of "showmanship"...etc.

It sometimes seems we both keep repeating ourselves in new ways to deaf ears.
billswondershow.com
"You cannot depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus." Mark Twain
Jonathan Townsend
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I was there when the song was first performed
And honestly thought he was singing
"Art's filthy lesson falls upon deaf ears"

Really. Smile
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Whit Haydn
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Bilwonder:

I don't like to repeat myself. I'd rather you go back and read what I have said. Smile

I never said any of the things you just claimed I did.
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