Types of Magic

Sally Painter
Magic in woman hands

Magic comes in many forms and it often seems there are endless types. Many magic forms overlap and intersect each other, but each has its own properties, uses and definition.

White Magic

White magic is the magic of good purposes and often dubbed a selfless practice. White magic should never be harmful to anyone or anything. Spells cast using white magic are for the betterment and benefit of others. Supernatural powers are often part of this practice. White magic is categorized as high magic. This means white magic is performed for higher spiritual purposes (not ritual or ceremonial types of magic).

Natural Magic

The origins of natural magic are pagan. Natural magic is considered part of white magic. The focus of natural magic is on Earth magic and all the natural forces in the universe. This includes practices, such as alchemy, herbology and astrology. Various divination arts are often included in this magical practice and can also be used in white, gray or black magic.

Gray Magic

If you're looking to practice a neutral magic, then gray magic is it. This type of practice isn't motivated by any particular reason or benefit. This magical practice falls in a gray area between white and black magic. Its purpose is to eradicate evil while reaping white magic benefits. As a neutral magic, some practitioners like to use it purely to demonstrate what magic is, in a type of performance.

Black Magic

There are many types of magic that fall under the umbrella of black magic. Many of the divination tools of the dark arts were used in various combinations for spellwork. Historically, witches were lumped into this practice, although most were white magic practitioners.

Black magic

Necromancy

Considered a dark magic, necromancy was the practice of raising the dead. It was also called demonic magic that included corpses and the use of blood to conjure demons.

Ceremonial and Ritual Magic

This magic is often used in black magic, but can also be found in white, natural and gray magic practices. Ceremonial magic is called high magic but shouldn't be confused with white magic. This is a learned magic that requires performing specially designed ritual magic with dedicated tools that's often complex for a specific magic goal.

Renaissance Magic

Dubbed renaissance magic for the timeframe, it was a popular practice. There were several divination arts that fell into this category. These were often used in natural magic as well as white, gray and black.

Enochian Magic

To perform Enochian magic requires using ceremonial magic. Much of this magic is said to come from the ancient apocalyptic Book of Enoch. Many of these ceremonial practices serve the purpose of conjuring and commanding spirits. These spirits are usually angelic beings.

Candle Magic

The art of candle magic is fairly straightforward. This form of spellwork can be used in any type of magic spell casting. You can make this a ritual or ceremonial type of magic or keep it simple by stating your goal, lighting the candle and focusing on that goal.

Color Magic

Color magic focuses on the type of energy each color attracts. It is often combined with other forms of magic, such as candle magic. In color candle magic, you select a specific candle color based on what you desire, such as a green candle for doing spellwork to attract money or health.

Bright red light candles

Chaos Magic

Chaos magic is a fairly new type of magic originating during the 1970s in England. Austin Osman Spare is credited with creating what he referred to as success magic or a form of magic that was based on results. This magic encompasses all types of rituals, symbolisms and of course, occultism in order to obtain what you want. The magic is often self-directed and created using whatever pieces of other magic you desire.

Neoplatonism Magic

The magical practice of Neoplatonism was used in the sixth century and borrowed from Platonism a popular practice/belief that originated in Alexandria during the third century AD. Neoplatonism is the belief system there is only one divine source. The nature of the One was used to explain gods, souls and everything else connected to life. Magic was used to make this connection with the One.

Earth Magic

Earth magic revolves around the energy of the earth. This can be ley lines, crystals and minerals, alchemy, plants, trees, animal spirits, and supernatural spirits, such as angels. It's through connecting with the energies of the Earth that healings and other amazing feats can be accomplished.

Elemental Magic

The magic found in the Earth's elements, air, water, fire and earth can be used to empower you. These elements carry specific Earth energies that you can tap into and reap the benefit of these powers. This magic is used in healings as well as other purposes.

Folk Magic

Know as a low magic, folk magic covers a wide range of magic often associated with witches. It can include chanting, spell casting, blood magic, and spirit summoning, such as conjuring demons or benevolent spirits. It's considered a low magic, which is a term used to distinguish it from high magic that's thought to be a more elevated form of magic, such as supernatural spirits both good and bad.

Witchcraft and Magic

Many people view witchcraft as a low magic that deals with practical matters. This magic focuses on spell casting and often includes blood magic. This magic can be either white or black magic, depending on the person or witch performing the magic.

Casting a Spell

Left-Hand Magic and Right-Hand Magic

These forms of magic are considered opposites. Some occult practitioners use these terms, especially for ceremonial magic. Left-hand magic is viewed as black magic that's malevolent while right-hand magic is considered white magic that's benevolent.

Good and Bad Controversy

There is controversy surround the ascribed characteristic. Some practitioners believe left-hand magic isn't necessarily black magic or malevolent. Instead they believe it simply follows a path with fewer restrictions and moral guidelines, depending on the group assessing it. The intent of the practitioner is believed to determine if either is good or bad magic.

Sex Magic

This type of magic includes all sexual activity. It utilizes the sexual arousal/orgasm energy to actualize a result. The sexual energy supposedly allows the individual to transcend to an altered reality. This magic is credited to 19th century Paschal Beverly Randolph, an American occultist.

Sympathetic Magic or Imitation Magic

Sympathetic or imitation magic is found in Voodoo and other practices. It requires the use of symbolic objects that are imitations of the actual object or person, such as a Voodoo doll, fetishes and effigies. The magic is performed using this imitation as a way to affect the actual object, event or person. These often require a token of the actual object, event or person, such as a lock of hair.

Tools of Magic

There are various divination tools used in magic that are often confused as being a form of magic. They can be used in any form of magic, such as white, black, gray or natural. A few of these divination tools include:

Scrying

Scrying or hydromancy divination is done with water. The practitioner is able to see images or scenes in the reflection of still water.

Fortuneteller during Seance with crystal ball

Flame Divination

Flame patterns of a fire (pyromancy) divination interprets these various shapes. These can also be seen as signs whose meanings are views as omens

Palm Reading

Palm reading or chiromancy is a divination used to tell the life story of a person. This is done through the various lines and even symbols found in a person's palms.

Geomancy

Geomancy divination was a renaissance form of magic (not to be confused with feng shui geomancy). Divination was made by tossing sand, dirt or stones and then reading the patterns they created. Other forms included interpreting the shapes of clouds, rails of falling stars, etc.

Scapulomancy

The renaissance form of divination used the scapula (shoulder blade) of animals. The scapula was broken using hot coals that would crack it. The pattern of the break was then interpreted or read.

Types of Magic

There are countless types of magic, many the result of specific cultures, societies and time periods. Magic has been a part of the world since the beginning of humankind and is still practiced by many around the world.

Types of Magic