Saturday, March 17, 2012

From the Journal of the Silvered ORB


They say that magic is just technology that hasn’t reached mass adoption yet. 
Think of the witch doctor, the herbalist of pre-industrial times. Potions, magic blends of herbs crushed with mortar and pestle. Abortifacients, stomach remedies, headache powder, proto-viagra, elixirs to soothe and cure. Today, we call those prescriptions, and they can be found in any remotely developed region.
We have moved beyond bartering chickens, gold and canned fruit to ease our maladies. Instead we move ourselves down paths forged by man and machine in metallic horses and trade abstractions of energy, digital bits of currency across microfilaments with individuals that represent massive conglomerates to receive mass produced pills assembled by machines, but still dispensed by the hands of an educated few. 
We don’t call them witches, warlocks, medicine men, or shamans. They’re just people working at a job inside giant refrigerated structure filled with an infinite variety of food shipped from all over the globe.  
We eat everything at any time. If you are gathering eggs at 6AM it is out of will and not necessity. You can just as easily buy them by the gross at midnight along with fresh, legal wine, a chocolate cake, sushi, and a packet of birth-control pills from the same pimply faced all-American high school student suffering through her first summer job.
The medicine woman knew about love. Marriages could be arranged, potions brewed, spells cast with herbs, a strand of hair, and a knotted scrap of cloth from the edge of a petticoat. Love spells require a few keystrokes sent out into pool of infinite knowledge that references itself so well that it can guide you to the specific partner of your dreams. The act of banging on plastic buttons in a specific sequence can bring you from isolation to sexual congress in a matter of hours. 
Necromancy for the masses. This is an easy trick. We used to struggle to speak to the dead, to embrace the past, and to avoid loss. Silver crossed palms, charlatans threw voices, worked with ringers, engineered pulleys and illusion to bring a sense of closure to war widows, plague survivors, and other orphans. 
We have a permanent time capsule that can be entered through a magic mirror that anyone can carry in their pocket. We can document our every action with words, photos, drawings, videos, and audio recordings for future generations to access and immerse themselves in for decades to come, long past our personal moment of expiration. Social networks have replaced the need to fortune tellers and mediums. 
We have learned to create our own ghost. 

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