Condensed Chaos

Condensed ChaosAn Introduction to Chaos Magic

foreword by Peter Carroll
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Pages:192 pages


Condensed Chaos provides a practical introduction to Chaos Magic, one of the fastest growing areas of Western Occultism. Through it you can change your circumstances, live according to a developing sense of personal responsibility, effect change around you, and stop living as a helpless cog in some clockwork universe. All acts of personal/collective liberation are magical acts. Magic leads us into exhilaration and ecstasy; into insight and understanding; into changing ourselves and the world in which we participate. Through magic we may come to explore the possibilities of freedom.

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One: Is Chaos Magic?

What is Magic?

The world is magical; we might get a sense of this after climbing a mountain and looking down upon the landscape below, or in the quiet satisfaction at the end of one of those days when everything has gone right for us. Magic is a doorway through which we step into mystery, wildness, and immanence. We live in a world subject to extensive and seemingly, all-embracing systems of social and personal control that continually feed us the lie that we are each alone, helpless, and powerless to effect change. Magic is about change. Changing your circumstances so that you strive to live according to a developing sense of personal responsibility; that you can effect change around you if you choose; that we are not helpless cogs in some clockwork universe. All acts of personal/collective liberation are magical acts. Magic leads us into exhilaration and ecstasy; into insight and understanding; into changing ourselves and the world in which we participate. Through magic we may come to explore the possibilities of freedom.

Surely this is simple enough? But no, magic has become obfuscated under a weight of words, a welter of technical terms which exclude the uninitiated and serve those who are eager for a 'scientific' jargon with which to legitimise their enterprise into something self-important and pompous. Abstract spiritual spaces have been created in the midst of which tower the Babel-like Lego constructions of 'inner planes', spiritual hierarchies and 'occult truths' which forget that the world around us is magical. The mysterious has been misplaced. We search through dead languages and tombs for 'secret knowledge', ignoring the mystery of life that is all around us. So for the moment, forget what you've read about spiritual enlightenment, becoming a 99th level Magus and impressing your friends with high-flown gobbledygook. Magic is surprisingly simple. What can it offer?

  1. A means to disentangle yourself from the attitudes and restrictions you were brought up with and which define the limits of what you may become.
  2. Ways to examine your life to look for, understand and modify behavior, emotional and thought patterns which hinder learning and growth.
  3. Increase of confidence and personal charisma.
  4. A widening of your perception of just what is possible, once you set heart and mind on it.
  5. To develop personal abilities, skills and perceptions — the more we see the world, the more we appreciate that it is alive.
  6. To have fun. Magic should be enjoyed.
  7. To bring about change — in accordance with will.

Magic can do all this, and more. It is an approach to life which begins at the most basic premises — what do I need to survive? — how do I want to live? — who do I want to be? — and then gives a set of conceptual weapons and techniques for achieving those aims.

What Is Chaos Magic?

What do you think of when you hear the word "Chaos?"

  • "A state of things in which chance is supreme"
  • "An unorganised state of primordial matter before the creation"
  • "A confused state or mass"
  • "Chaos was the primal source, first of all"
  • "This isn't anarchy, this is Chaos"
  • "In the beginning, there was only Chaos"
  • "Agents of Chaos cast burning glances at anything or anyone capable of bearing witness to their condition..."
  • "One must have Chaos in one to give birth to a dancing star"
  • "Matter is illusion, solidity is illusion, we are illusion. Only Chaos is real"
  • "In the limitless heavens, shines the countenance of Chaos"

Chaos is all this and more. A term which means something different for everyone, none of us can ignore Chaos. Over the last twenty years or so, Chaos has become the buzzword of a revolution in thought and method, spawning a new form of science, new technologies; a whole new emerging world-view. While Chaos Theory has been generating debate within the scientific community, Chaos Magic has been creating controversy within occult circles. It has been labeled variously as "English Thelema," "the blackest form of dark power," and "git 'ard magic." At the core of this revolution is the recognition that the scientific world-view which has set the limitations of acknowledged human experience is crumbling, that new visions and models are required, as are new ways of being, and more importantly, new ways of doing. Chaos Magic is a new approach to "doing" magic.

Editorial Reviews

Phil Hine's book is the most concise statement ... of the logic of modern magic. Magic, in the light of modern physics, quantum theory and probability theory is now approaching science. We hope that a result of this will be a synthesis so that science will become more magical and magic more scientific.

William S. Burroughs author of Naked Lunch & contributor to Rebels & Devils

Phil Hine has produced a tour de force.

Ian Read Editor, Chaos International

An excellent introduction to chaos magick, and magick in general.


I love Phil Hine. Condensed Chaos articulates some basic skills of doing magick, and discusses the universality of the tech involved. It provides a much needed critique of the problematic role of tradition as a yardstick in assessing the effectiveness of magick, and takes a slice at the messy issues of cultural context surrounding a lot of contemporary magickal practice. With the focus on the tech instead of the trivia, grades and ego production, Chaos Magick can be an excellent training ground for genuine magickal proficiency.

Amy Hale writer and anthropologist Read the full review

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About the Author

Phil Hine

Phil Hine is a former editor of the internationally acclaimed magazine Chaos International. He has facilitated workshops and seminars on modern magical practice in America and Europe and contributes regularly to a wide range of occult journals.