Podcast — Abracadabra




Music:  Lena Zavaroni, “It’s only a paper moon”


It’s The William Tell Show.  I call myself William Tell; you can call me Bill.  Thank you for including me in your world; everyone wants to be included.

At this moment, we’re waiting for the outcomes of the January 6 committee in Congress, and the Trump election interference trial in Georgia.  And I, for one, certainly hope that truth wins.

“Abracadabra” is a word we normally associate with a stage magician pulling a rabbit out of a hat.  It is also a word used by real magicians, people who presume to actually practice magic, like Aleister Crowley, in their activities and rituals.It’s a corruption of a Hebrew saying that would be translated, quote, “As I create, so it happens.”  Both halves of the word come from —

In Hebrew, practically every noun and every verb come from what’s called a “root,” which consists of three consonants.  The vowels that get attached to those three consonants determine whether it’s a verb or a noun, singular or plural, masculine or feminine, present or future tense, first, second, or third person, et cetera.  The root here is D-B-R, and can mean either “word” or “event.”  Put briefly, the same Hebrew word can mean either “word” or “event,” “speak” or “happen.”

So, in saying, “Abracadabra,” the magician is saying, “I speak, and it happens.”

This is a basic belief in a lot of magic, that people’s words can cause events to occur.  After all, in the Creation in the book of Genesis, God spoke the world into existence.  There is also the story of Matthew 8:8, where the centurion tells Jesus, “Just say the word, and my servant will be healed;” and it happened.  For the man or woman of faith, word and deed are one and the same.

Many magicians, and many Christians, believe that anyone can create through speech.  Many people quote Romans 4:17, which speaks of “speaking of things that are not, as if they were.”  This is the basis of the so-called Word of Faith movement, which teaches Christians to state over and over the things they want, as if they’ve already happened — For example, “I’m rich.” — and the belief is that, saying these things and believing them, will cause them to happen.

I have a particular story about this, that I’ll tell when we get back from the break.

[Commercial break]

Back in the day, at the first shelter where I stayed, for nine years, we had mandatory chapel for an hour every night.  There was no real screening of the presenters; any crackpot who wanted could come in and have a captive audience for one hour every month.

The one exception was homeless people.  At the request of the men, I approached the chaplain and obtained permission to lead chapel myself.  The administration stepped in, and said a homeless man cannot lead the homeless men’s chapel.  Go figure.

OK, so one of the presenters was Minister Jeff.  He was young, dynamic, muscular, and certainly thought he was anointed.  In his first presentation, he told us how to make your dreams come true, just as dreams came true for Joseph in the book of Genesis.  He quoted all the Bible verses I did a minute ago, except for the one about the centurion.  He said there are five steps to make your dreams come true:

First, dream it.
Second, believe it,
Third, write it down.
Fourth, speak it.
Fifth, share it, meaning, talk about it widely.

Then, whatever you wish for, will come to pass.

So, I decided to do this myself.

I said, “Halle Berry’s going to suck my dick for five hours, and then I’ll fuck the shit out of her.”

I dreamed it.  I believed it.  I wrote it down:  “Halle Berry’s gonna” — My handwriting is atrocious! — “and then I’ll —”

I spoke it.  I didn’t really share it much, ‘cause I don’t wanna go to jail.

But that was at least five years ago, and it still hasn’t happened.

For today’s music, I have a YouTube video instead of an mp3 file.  I wanted to find something about magic.  “It’s only a paper moon” is one of my favorite songs; it brightens my soul every time I think about it.


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