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Dynamike
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I ran into different people so far in my life who think magic is sorcery, witchcraft or black magic. Most of the people are from a country of Africa. I try to explain I am performing "clean" magic as an act of entertainment. I can not convince them. One lady told me I sold my soul to the devil.
Father Photius
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Lots of them Mike and they are not of any one race in my case, many are very strict protestant fundamentalist, some are just people who believe magic is real, and others are psychologically off. We have members here on the Café who believe or at least state they believe they have real magical powers.
"Now here's the man with the 25 cent hands, that two bit magician..."
Josh the Superfluous
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I have real powers. Unfortunately I can only change the color of wooden rabbit cut-outs.

I had a non-African coworker who believed David Blaine was dealing with the devil. She also believed George Bush was a good president.
What do you want in a site? "Honesty, integrity and decency." -Mike Doogan
"I hate it, I hate my ironic lovechild. I didn't even have anything to do with it" Josh #2
Patrick Differ
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I get that in Guadalajara, too.

Some people believe that all deception is inherently evil, regardless. They have their reasons for their beliefs, be they what they are, and I respect their reasons even though I don't agree with them. I don't push against them.
Will you walk into my parlour? said the Spider to the Fly,
Tis the prettiest little parlour that ever you did spy;
The way into my parlour is up a winding stair,
And I've a many curious things to show when you are there.

Oh no, no, said the little Fly, to ask me is in vain,
For who goes up your winding stair
-can ne'er come down again.
eatonmagic
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I remember one time when I lived up in Cincinnati and had a magic shop at King's Island a lady approached me. She walked up to me a grabbed my hand and said jokingly, "Can you read people's palms or see into the future or talk with the dead?" I smiled because I thought she was joking. I soon saw her smile turn into a grimace as a tear came down her cheek. I knew right then something was seriously wrong with this lady.

She try to fight off the tears and in a mumbly voice said, " You see me daughter..." and I interrupted her. I knew what was about to come and I noticed at that point she was wearing a necklace underneath her t-shirt and I could barely make out a name on the gold charm. I just took a shot and grabbed her hand even tighter, bent down a little so I was eye-to-eye with her and said, "It's okay...Amanda is in a happier place now and she wants you to be happy for her". OMG!!! This lady gave me the biggest hug and the tears just came pouring down.

I could relate to her because my mother had just passed a month earlier in a car accident after beating lung cancer. We shared a moment and she went on. In those situations, I think (IMHO) it's okay to say something that makes them feel better. After all, I believe this was the entire purpose of Christianity. But we won't get into religion here. All I know is that I felt better afterward, and she probably did too.
TrickyRicky
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Some years back one summer, I was sitting at the coffee table in Browsers Den of Magic in Toronto Canada.
The owner at that time was the late and great Len Cooper. We were talking magic as usual.
A tall gentleman of African decent walked in and asked to talk to the owner of the shop.
He wanted to buy a bottle of real magic dust. Len told him that it's all tricks nothing more nothing less.
He replied "don't hogwash me I know that you have the real magic powder in the back and I want to buy some".
There was a few kids standing listening to the conversation that was going on. You should see the smiles on their faces.
The gentleman leaned over to Len and said "I see, you don't want to sell it to me in front of the kids. I will come back later".
For many years after, every time I enter the store I'd say to Len "I would like to buy some of the real stuff you have in the back"
TrickyRicky
Steve_Mollett
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My friend, Bill Brewe, once had an old lady wag a finger in his face and declare, "You serve the Devil!"

Bill responded with imperious, mock-indignance, "Madame, how could I possibly serve myself?!?"

She retreated.

When I was doing table-hopping mentalism for a local coffee house, a morning employee, a youth minister, consistently tore down my fliers, no matter how many times the manager got on his case for it.

I should have inspired the employee to have his congregation picket the place, and then alert the press and radio news that my performance was being picketed by church members.

Can you say 'packed house?'
Author of: GARROTE ESCAPES
The absurd is the essential concept and the first truth.
- Albert Camus
kregg
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Quote:
On 2008-09-25 23:48, Josh the Superfluous wrote:
I had a non-African coworker who believed David Blaine was dealing with the devil. She also believed George Bush was a good president.


But, she didn't think Kwame Kilpatrick was a good mayoral candidate did she? Smile
POOF!
tommy
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The country of Africa is not a country, it is a continent. There are 46 countries there, if memory serves, many different cultures, beliefs and so on, but I know what you mean. There is plenty of mumbo jumbo in the west though and I think we believe in just as much magic as anyone.
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
Michael Kamen
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This is often a cultural thing. Chinese culture, for all its beauty, seems to be full of superstition judging from the numerous highly educated and otherwise competent people I have encountered, who hold a certainty that real magical powers exist and are the basis of performance magic. Performing magic for such folks in my view denigrates both my relationship with them and the craft I am really engaged in.
Michael Kamen
Dynamike
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Quote:
On 2008-09-26 11:23, tommy wrote:
The country of Africa is not a country, it is a continent.

I know. My bad. I meant to place a country "in" Africa. Ya kno' wha' I'm say'n?
stoneunhinged
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Mike, there is no need to apologize. Your original post said "A country of Africa", which is grammatically correct. I think Tommy was making an entirely different point.

I've lived my life primarily in Asia, Hawaii, North America, and Europe--about equally distributed. And while westerners have their superstitions, they do not compare with the Asians in superstitious believe. I've read enough to convince me that Africa is a continent FULL of superstitious beliefs proportionally beyond what might be typically be called western.

Let's not get into political correctness here. We all love each other; we are all brothers. To point out that Africans...and their descendants in America...are more prone to superstition is not a racist observation, but a cultural one.

That's my opinion, humble or not. But please don't flame me unless you know me. If you do, well, go right ahead.
Dynamike
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Quote:
On 2008-09-26 14:12, stoneunhinged wrote:
Mike, there is no need to apologize. Your original post said "A country of Africa", which is grammatically correct. I think Tommy was making an entirely different point.

Thanks, bro.
RJE
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As a full time high school teacher, I regularly get confronted by students that think Criss Angel can really fly above buildings and David Blaine can cause playing cards to penetrate glass.

Of course, both Criss and David have real powers! Smile
Dynamike
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Quote:
On 2008-09-26 15:41, RJE wrote:
Of course, both Criss and David have real powers! Smile

I did not know that. Thank you for letting me know.
dannywhit
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I believe most magicians do not realize the amount of people who live right here in the U.S that are desperate to believe in something. All you have to do is watch some psychic on a talk show to see what I mean. This places a huge responsibility on our shoulders due to the fact that we dictate emotions by creating magical experiences. I do not think we should abuse this by taking advantage of poor mourning people. I have never claimed to have powers like Jesus Christ nor have I ever mocked any of Christ’s miracles, but when I am asked if my magic is real I always answer yes. I try to explain to them that magic is an emotion that I try to create to give them an experience they will never forget. This does not mean I can walk on water or heal the sick it just means that I believe emotions are real. So, if you think that all we do as magicians is perform illusions then fear, hate, happiness, and love must be illusions as well. I like to think these things are very real.
Father Photius
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Just remember, we live in a world where people really believe that William Shatner explored the universe in the NCC 1701 and Leonard Nimoy really has pointed ears and came from the planet Vulcan. In fact one of the fastest growing languages on our planet is Klingon. Can it be such a stretch for them to think what we do is supernatural in origin?
"Now here's the man with the 25 cent hands, that two bit magician..."
Josh Riel
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People really are dumb. Thanks be to the gods of dumb people. They seem to be very powerful gods.

Let them believe in whatever they want and pilfer their bank accounts. That'll teach 'em.

Unfortunately it won't. They will just go to another mystic to explain why it happened, for a fee.

Really, they are awesome!
Magic is doing improbable things with odd items that, under normal circumstances, would be unnessecary and quite often undesirable.
Father Photius
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Quote:
On 2008-10-08 01:16, Josh Riel wrote:
People really are dumb. Thanks be to the gods of dumb people. They seem to be very powerful gods.

Let them believe in whatever they want and pilfer their bank accounts. That'll teach 'em.

Unfortunately it won't. They will just go to another mystic to explain why it happened, for a fee.

Really, they are awesome!


So very true.
"Now here's the man with the 25 cent hands, that two bit magician..."
Al Angello
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I was doing walk around magic one night when I had a disagreement with a man that was sure some magicians had supernatural powers, and didn't want to hear that the ones who appear to have supernatural powers are the good ones, that is except for Chris Angel who can fly.
Al Angello The Comic Juggler/Magician
http://www.juggleral.com
http://home.comcast.net/~juggleral/
"Footprints on your ceiling are almost gone"
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