It is a common occurrence to define magick in the occult community and everyone has their own terminology. I will not be using Aleister Crowley’s famous quote, or anyone else’s work in this matter. Much rather I will be using my own terminology in this regard. I personally prefer to use my own personal experiences in this definition, much rather than utilizing an overstated ideology. For personal context, I do my best to avoid ideology and if I do have one it would be progress. Magick in my own system, Mageia, which is Greek for magick, has two main elements: the magician and the environment.
The magician is the first half to the equation. He/she must be willing to make the change like the Foolish Man in tarot. As we go to change our lives we must be conduit of change. Therefore, prioritizing our habits is the first and foremost companion to change. In a world that is demanding on materialism, health, catering to those around us, and managing a job it is quite easy to gain an interest or escapism. However, it is much more taxing to turn an interest into a lifestyle. Stoic philosophers hit the nail on the head very adequately when they spoke of the power of habit. Thus, we have two elements to the magician: The Metaphysical and the Physical.
The Metaphysical part of the magician is his inner power to generate energy. Our entire body is a living machine that produces electricity through the nerves and the brain. Thus our body is this beautiful vessel we are still working to comprehend to this current times. But inside our meat suits comes one of our most important organs, the brain. It is where the Greeks believed the soul dwelled, called Psyche. The Magician is believed to have a world in himself he is to explore. Some map this area as Tree of Life, The Astral, or some other inner world. It is our mind that connects us to the Universe, or God. Our mind is what determines our actions before we do them. It is believed that the simple formula of thoughts, words, actions all play a vital role energetic world and in the mundane. Our thoughts are the first ingredient, this is the realm of ideas. To come up with an idea is the first step to manifestation, but materialization of an idea is the second step of this three part process. We materialize this through words. The word for spell in magick comes from the Greek word, logos, which means word. When the magician has written and/or spoken this word then he has brought something from the mind into the world as a concept. It is believed words carry power, we see this in antiquity very heavily as words in the Greek Magical Papyri were used to formulate sigils. Even many magicians are wary about saying some magick words carelessly for the belief in manifestation. Lastly, once we proclaim our thoughts in words, we have third and most complete form of magick, action. Action is where the physical world takes hold.
The very idea of magick is to improve our life. We cannot improve or manifest without action. Thus, we must bear in mind that the magician has used the magick of his thoughts and words to bring change in himself or something/someone in the environment. So actions play a very vital role in terms of completing the magick. Without action, words and ideas will never manifest in the physical. So we develop a very interesting concept once the action has taken place. The magician starts to develop self-knowledge.
“Know thyself,” was the direct quote written on the Temple of Apollo in Delphi. When you know yourself then you can understand what you must do as a magician to diagnose what your reactions are to situations and strive to make constant changes to be a better version of you. You learn more about who you are an individual, without this self-knowledge there is no esoteric side of your magick, which is the most potent to causing change. Your goals will change the more life presents to you. This is the very basic idea that the more you know about you then the more you can be effective for you in the magick. However, this is not to be conflated to narcissism or selfishness. In the world of the physical there is the law of cause and effect, actions, and habits. To internally observe all these aspects in the physical comes the foundation of how much you actually manifest. But the magician needs his habits to bring his light of creation into the world, therefore we have the environment.
The habitat of the environment can very well make or break the magician, depending on the discord or the harmony he/she applies to it. As a fair example, if you wish to create a love life, but you live in an area where no one has a particular interest in you then your magick will be the least effective, so it would be best to move or visit another area. If the mundane surroundings and events are not conducive to the preferred results then they best not be applied. There will be some instances when one of a million chance event happens that is unlikely in the environment, but most of the time the magick has to be well planned and timed for the environment. This is where the laws of cause and effect play a role. If I throw a stone in a pond then I create the ripple effect in the water. The magician is using his/her magick both physically and metaphysically as the stone to cause ripples in the environment in the same way. It should be said that the environment serves as a catalyst to do magick; whether it is for love, money, career transformation, solving a domestic or social issue, and etc.
The environment is made of energy like us and our magick. So the effect should weighed and measured carefully. This has led me to believe that spirits do exist as well, they are not simply in your head. In a world composed of energy, it would be meaningless to turn magick into a psychological game of dungeons and dragons. Reality is happening all the time, but it is our perception which interprets reality, not vice versa. If we see a man get murdered then no matter how our perception views the situation of the matter, it does not change the fact a heinous crime happened. So I firmly believe the magician must be rational and work as close to reality as he can without falling into the rabbit hole of thinking our own perception is the big picture of reality. The magician is the king on a chessboard and the environment is the chessboard. Every situation is different, no matter how similar they seem. Consequently, the magician must be forced to treat and fix every situation differently. The variables will be very different.
So what is magick? Magick is the magician manifesting by his thoughts, words, actions, and habits on a metaphysical and physical level to bring change to himself and/or the world. This is my definition of magick. It can be complex in cases, and in others very elementary in others.