Why is this a magical feat? If an individual shows us an empty hat, puts in a rabbit, covers it, utters “abracadabra,” and then pulls out the same rabbit, we are unimpressed. What if instead, they pull out a cat? Wow! That is powerful. We call such a person a magician. Through the use of symbols, our cerebral cortex commonly performs equivalent magical transformations.
As the cerebral cortex matures, we acquire the ability to perform magical acts. Forgiveness and love qualify as the most worthy magical acts of our human brain. Here is how our mental “magic” works. First our cerebral cortex uses images and symbols to transform our commonly shared physical reality into our personal mental reality. We call this “consciousness”. We assign meaning to symbols and manipulate them to form ideas, concepts, and imagination. As our cortex matures and adds knowledge to intelligence we acquire the mysterious power we call will to become powerful creators. Will power is the force that transforms our private mental reality into action pathways not previously present in our shared physical world. Will power enables us to reverse the process of transforming our commonly-shared reality into our personal mental reality.
physical reality → mental reality → will power → physical reality
For example, when biological changes alert your brain to danger, such as being physically or verbally attacked, you are prewired to respond in kind – fight back, hurt the offender, become resentful, and sustain the urge for harmful aggression. This is the fight part of our fight or flight instinct. This is not “magical”; it is natural. Now, what if someone puts harmful aggression into your hat, and you cover it, apply a few symbols, and then pull out something entirely different? Forgiveness? Kindness? Reconciliation? This remarkable turn of events is a dramatic magical transformation. Your marvelous brain can manipulate what comes in so that instead of what instinct and tradition have prewired to come out, you wisely exercise your freed will to create the new outcome that works better, short-term AND long-term.
We can understand that this special ability requires considerable time for our complex brain to mature and add wisdom to create beneficial change. The degree of magical power will depend not only on the innate capacity and maturity of the cortex but also on the quality of the meanings assigned to the symbols with which it has to work. Some thinking programs are more sophisticated than others; and, of course, native languages are necessarily designed to express the pre-judged perspectives of nature and our nurturers. Our immature cortex is incapable of common sense problem-solving until it is mature and properly educated.
To the degree that we free our will power from the demands of instinct, tradition, and human dictators, we become our own person. We call this self-mastery. By owning our will power, we join fate and circumstance as masters of our thinking, feelings, and actions. The power of intention is a “magical” feat. Think about it. Physical reality goes into our mind: we transform it into something that emerges in a very different form.