‘Heal’ Wood, latex, liquid rubber, paint

I had another mentor session with Vincent. A session where I was pushed into uncomfortable places and asked to explain my position. What we both knew was that I didn’t really have one yet.

We initially talked about my research into the sacred feminine, witchcraft and its relationship to healing and “cursing”. For centuries natural phenomena that couldn’t be explained by other means were attributed to witchcraft, or were believed to be able to be cured by witchcraft. We then moved on to a related subject I’m very interested in- the social construction of health and wellness. Never has health been more closely associated with socioeconomic factors, nor has it been so heavily monetized by the Pharmaceutical industry, as it is in contemporary society. Following our chat I’ve been thinking further about just how closely related these subject matters are. Forgetting even the fact that the use of healing magic and medication have the same goal, there are other factors that bind them.

The placebo effect shows that medicine and magic can work in similar ways. Placebos have been proven in numerous double blind tests to be just as effective as some medications. It’s peoples’ belief in them that gives them their efficacy. In the same way spells and magic aren’t necessarily in their own right effective, it is the potency that people imbue them with that gives them strength.

I’m certainly not suggesting that all medicine is ineffective. Nor am I an advocate for the use of magic. All I am wondering is whether the might of our mind is an underestimated resource for healing?

The idea of healing brings me full circle to the idea of metamorphosis and transformation- as with the chrysalis. From unwell to healed. From healthy to sick. From ailing to flourishing… and for all of us, at some stage, from alive to dead.

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