Magic is a tool for some and a lifestyle for others. Some use it as needed, others live under its veil and view every action, thought, and gesture as some sort of magical happening. I’m the former.
Magic is not hocus-pocus, wands and chalices and this and that. Magic, if it had to be categorized, would fall into the fields of psychology and communication. In order to perform magic, you have to convince yourself that you have the power to engender change and direct influence over circumstance and others. Magic is a product of specialized language and (usually) self-directed psychological guidance.
Therapy is a form of applied magic, in my opinion. The witch (the shrink) uses learned skills (psychology) and specialized language (communication) in order to get past the target’s (client’s) mental defenses and locate a problem. The witch then uses his or her knowledge to help that person get better by giving advice or helping the client realize his or her own power to change his or her situation.
Magic is about changing your mental state to bring yourself higher either materialistically or spiritually. If you are depressed, magic is the process by which you gather enough goodwill toward the future, or hope—you’re changing your mind and the way you see things in order to ensure a better life. A love spell is about the equivalent of realizing you like someone, psyching yourself up, and then using that confidence to talk to the object of your desire. And because confidence is so important, it’s looked at as a very big necessity.
I dunno—I think I just like using the connotation of magic in order to explain everyday things because there’s a certain glory in being able to proclaim yourself a witch that appeals to me. But anyway, a parallel is a parallel and the one I have sure makes my days much more enjoyable.