Magic, Illusion And Our Minds

When you are a child, one question that you are sure to be asked is “Do you believe in magic?”. You are almost conditioned from that point to not believe in it, because answering “yes” is more likely to result in the mockery of older children than it is to bring any positive results. After a certain time, we are not going to believe in magic no matter how much we want to.

And this is an important factor – surely we would all like to believe that magic is “real”. Without getting into too deep a supernatural discussion, we can all say that things we would once have attributed to magic now have more realistic, more persuasive explanations. Would we dearly love to be proved wrong and find out that it was all magic? Many of us would, certainly.

So how do we get around this fact? How many of us, as adults, continue to believe in magic even in the face of seemingly insuperable proof that it is not real? Part of it is suspension of disbelief, and part of it is an absence of proof that magic does not exist. After all, you can hardly prove that something does not exist because you can never reveal everything in the universe.

We dearly want to believe in magic, and that is enough. Sure, there might be obvious explanations for the tricks that we see, but there is more than enough reality in everyday life and nowhere near enough magic. This is a major part of the reason why the Harry Potter books are so popular with adults. We know it’s an imaginary world – but it would be incredible to live within it.

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