Chaos magic  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Chaos magic is a form of magic which was first formulated in West Yorkshire, England, in the 1970s. Through a variety of techniques often reminiscent of Western ceremonial magic or neoshamanism, many practitioners believe they can change both their subjective experience and objective reality, though some chaos magicians dispute that magic occurs through paranormal means.

One of the most frequently cited tenets of Chaos magic is that "Nothing is True and Everything is Permitted", a quote attributed to Hassan-i Sabbah and used by Friedrich Nietzsche in his work Thus Spoke Zarathustra. Like Crowley's "'Do what thou wilt' shall be the whole of the law", this phrase is often mistakenly interpreted in its most literal sense to mean that objective reality does not exist and therefore that free will is unlimited. However, "Nothing is True and Everything is Permitted" is more widely interpreted to mean "there is no such thing as an objective truth outside of our perception; therefore, all things are true and possible".

Although there are a few techniques unique to chaos magic (such as some forms of sigil magic), chaos magic is often highly individualistic and borrows liberally from other belief systems, due to chaos magic having a central belief that belief is a tool. Some common sources of inspiration include such diverse areas as science fiction, scientific theories, ceremonial magic, shamanism, Eastern philosophy, world religions, and individual experimentation. Despite tremendous individual variation, chaos magicians often work with chaotic and humorous paradigms, such as the worship of Hundun from Taoism or Eris from Discordianism.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Chaos magic" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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