i suspect a lot of kids who've been repeatedly injured by scapegoating and exclusion don't really need it explained more than once why a spell controlling the will of another is unethical. we live in the psychic backwash of other people's ambition. other kids got popular and subsequently maintain their popularity by projecting their pain into us. systemic oppression 101: succeed in your society by traumatizing others into the circumstances you most want to avoid. my understanding is that it provides quite the illusion of control, at least for a time. sure sounds like toxic magic to me. then again, that's the case for most magic created in the service of concealing and empowering the infliction of mental illness.
what i did at that moment in my history was cast a spell to help me see love and the potential for love where it already existed, because i struggle with that. i can't date. i'm flirt blind. at that point of my life, i'd been gaslighted into believing nobody would even want to be my friend, and the isolation was killing me.
i prayed for an ethical way to help myself with that, and was told in a dream to connect with true will, not force the will of strangers into giving me what i couldn't possibly know i wanted. in other words, i asked for what i needed at that moment in my history: to see what was already there. to discover what was possible. a path to take. something to work toward.
what i haven't seen nearly enough discussion about are the ethics of material manifestation and prosperity magic, especially when practiced by magic workers who don't have any particular obstacles to getting their needs met through non-magical means; who, more importantly, already have enough, or are maybe being prompted spirituality by some form of (benign, but painful) lack. there are important lessons in longing. under the right circumstances - meaning, basic needs are met - not-having fosters creativity. creativity is magic.
before i do any magic shifting material reality in my favor, i need to understand and take responsibility for the consequences of that. and the consequences for that can be grave, especially when i'm acting on unexamined hungers instead of contextualized need. maybe i'll get what i want so easily i'll live out my life never realizing what it was that i needed. maybe i'm condemning myself to a life of unexamined hunger.
and it's just important here as it is with love spells: it is wrong to control the minds and circumstances of others, dig?
it comes from somewhere.
all of it comes from somewhere.
magic is not now, and has never been, a bottomless salad bar. to treat it as such is a direct affront to the powers that gave us the drive and capacity to work magic in the first place.
i believe we have the power to influence our reality with magic. i believe that if any of us are born with some degree of magical ability, all of us are. but, like everything in the realm of experience, there is a difference between possible and conscientious action. magic is an ecosystem. magic can be overharvested. magic can be polluted. we can lose magic. our connection to magic can be damaged and destroyed, on individual as well as societal levels.
something to think about: what is my magical work doing to my relationship with eternity?