Thursday, March 5, 2009

Russia to Regulate Magick?

I've mentioned before that one of my concerns about conclusively demonstrating the practical effectiveness of magick is that it wouldn't be long before the government decided there was a need to regulate it. Such a move is now underway in the Russian Federation.

The draft bill would set up an expert council to grant licenses to healers, psychics, wizards and sorcerers, and applicants who were found not to have supernatural powers could be charged with fraud, the daily said.

Honestly, as regulations go this one doesn't sound all that bad. Fraudulent practitioners are a genuine problem in the magick-using community, but it's nice to see that the bill doesn't automatically treat anyone who practices magick as a faker. My main concern would be the composition of the "expert board" and the biases of those who serve on it, since often someone trained in a particular school of magick will have a low opinion of one or more rival schools.

It should also go without saying that any such regulation should only apply to commercial practitioners. If someone does a healing spell as a favor to a friend, for example, they shouldn't be opening themselves up to criminal charges if the spell fails. Russia unfortunately has a history of persecuting people for their spiritual beliefs over the course of the last century, and any regulation of magick should take great care to steer clear of doing so again.

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Unknown said...

It's like, I think, china that wanted to regulate immortality or spirits or something a couple years ago. But, I don't see this as being very effective.

Scott Stenwick said...

china wanted to regulate immortality or spirits

Yes, they did. I covered it back when it happened right here. I haven't heard anything about it since, so either China has cracked down on news stories about it over the last couple of years or nothing ever came of it. Either is possible.