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Author Topic: The Good-Enough Tool and the Right Tool  (Read 4453 times)

Malia

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Re: The Good-Enough Tool and the Right Tool
« Reply #15 on: July 15, 2012, 10:42:07 am »
Quote from: Darkhawk;64093
This is something that happens to me a lot - I have something that's good enough (usually something that works a good deal better than that particular assignment!), and I'm content with it, and don't think I need to go any further with it.  I have an adequate tool, a perfectly good methodology and technique, or whatever.

And usually, I do - I mean, I have my ritual cup sitting on my nightstand right now.  It's nothing hugely special, it holds water just fine in a good quantity for my needs, it has a pleasant shape and meets my quirks for wanting such a thing.  But I don't have any illusion that it's anything beyond good enough for my purposes.  It's possible there exists a cup out there that is mindblowingly amazing for me.  (I suspect in the real world I'll make one when my studio works.)  This ain't it.  But it does what I need it to.

I'm not a very heavy tool user, at least not in my head.  But I look around, and I see the collection of scarves I use for one set of protection magic, the perfume bottle I use for another bit of protection magic, I see my aforementioned cup, I note that the tools I put away so that the Celt's mother wouldn't see them haven't been put back where they belong...  So I think my head is wrong on this.  And some of my tools are good enough.  And some of them are The Right Tool.

Does anyone else understand what I'm talking about here?  


I can totally relate.

Quote
How many of your tools are good enough, and how many of them are Right?  


Good Enough: 3
Right: 1

Quote
How do you know when a tool is The Right Tool?  


When I can sense its energy -- and that energy isn't being a b!tch. I can't sense the energy in my Ogham deck and my alder wand, and my Tarot deck doesn't comply with me anymore (found a cheap replacement at the local metaphysical shop though.

Quote
How does it affect your magic to work with something that precisely attuned?


I'll find out when I have more tools (only Right tool is a stone goblet; what can a Druidess do with that?).

Quote
Can you make a good enough tool into a Right Tool?  How?

 
If you're the crafty type, most likely. I can't think of how myself right now. Sorry.

Aiwelin

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Re: The Good-Enough Tool and the Right Tool
« Reply #16 on: July 15, 2012, 04:34:19 pm »
Quote from: RandallS;64123
Unless the particular tool that will be "mindblowingly amazing" for you is obvious to you, you can waste a lot of time and money searching for that "nearly perfect for you" version of the tool. Perhaps, I don't worry about it. If the tools I have do the job well enough, I'm not going to waste much time, energy or money looking for that "awesome for me" tool. I will not turn it down if I stumble across it and can obtain it, of course.

I'm known people who fell into the "searching for the perfect tool" trap. They waste a lot of time searching for "perfect" and sometimes even put off actual work because their tools, while adequate for the job, just aren't  amzing for the job. I refuse to fall into this trap -- because I know how easy it would be for me to fall into "waiting for perfection".

 
I think you make a great point.  Unfortunately, I am the opposite - I'm happy to have any tool that will do the job.  Recently, I built a hutch for my altar, and was so excited to get started that I constructed it with an uncared-for handsaw I found in the corner of my garage filled with the previous owner's things.  I could have waited a day and used my uncle's table saw, but I wanted to get started and the hand saw was 'good enough'.  I was a perfectionist early in life, but have trained myself out of the habit - often to the detriment of my efforts.  They're good, but rarely perfect.

On the other hand, I'm not particularly bothered by that, so.. *shrug*.  Maybe this is a better way to be.
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Vale

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Re: The Good-Enough Tool and the Right Tool
« Reply #17 on: July 15, 2012, 05:02:42 pm »
Quote from: Malia;64233

If you're the crafty type, most likely. I can't think of how myself right now. Sorry.

 
Well one of my "exactly right" tools is a dark mirror which was made by me from an old photo frame I picked up in a charity shop. I'd wanted one for ages but all those commercially available were seriously expensive and I'm not a lover of mass produced resin items either.

All I did was paint the glass  black and decorate the frame with symbolism that works for me. it cost next to nothing and works brilliantly.

veggiewolf

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Re: The Good-Enough Tool and the Right Tool
« Reply #18 on: July 16, 2012, 04:21:19 pm »
Quote from: Darkhawk;64093
...

Does anyone else understand what I'm talking about here?  How many of your tools are good enough, and how many of them are Right?  How do you know when a tool is The Right Tool?  How does it affect your magic to work with something that precisely attuned?  Can you make a good enough tool into a Right Tool?  How?

 
I can think of at least one tool (off the top of my head) that was "good enough" for one purpose but ended up being Right for another.  I've a lidded bowl that I was using for offerings for a time - it was good enough until I received my footed offering dishes.  However, I'm now using it as a receptacle for candle magic and it is absolutely the Right Tool for this...to the point where I wish I'd thought of it sooner.

This is probably not the norm, though.  I have some other "good enough" tools that will probably never be Right for anything...but I don't think that's necessarily a bad thing.
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monsnoleedra

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Re: The Good-Enough Tool and the Right Tool
« Reply #19 on: July 16, 2012, 04:33:08 pm »
Quote from: Vale;64291
Well one of my "exactly right" tools is a dark mirror which was made by me from an old photo frame I picked up in a charity shop. I'd wanted one for ages but all those commercially available were seriously expensive and I'm not a lover of mass produced resin items either.

All I did was paint the glass  black and decorate the frame with symbolism that works for me. it cost next to nothing and works brilliantly.


Not specifically in reference to this post but this one reminded me of it.

My wife collects Prince House Orchard Medley dinnerware.  Now we purchased one item for a considerable sum then found another item with a slightly different name for a considerable lessor amount.  We're talking in the order of 50+ dollars between the two items.  Yet the thing is that once we had both of them in hand they were the exact same item, only the sellers had used different labels to sell them.

That is what I see a lot of times with regards to so called magical items.  People look to the name of the item and many times who created it to judge if it is more correct or better suited.  Many times seemingly assigning those items with greater expense as the more suited item.

One frequenlty seemingly to apply the concept that the higher the cost the better the item.  As such i've encountered many who think item A is make do only until they can afford the higher priced item.  Then the cycle starts again as a newer item is discovered and they must pursue that item.  Ironically I see it a lot with regards to Oracle and Tarot cards stating that one works so much better than another.

Aiwelin

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Re: The Good-Enough Tool and the Right Tool
« Reply #20 on: July 16, 2012, 04:57:25 pm »
Quote from: monsnoleedra;64422

One frequenlty seemingly to apply the concept that the higher the cost the better the item.  As such i've encountered many who think item A is make do only until they can afford the higher priced item.  Then the cycle starts again as a newer item is discovered and they must pursue that item.  Ironically I see it a lot with regards to Oracle and Tarot cards stating that one works so much better than another.

 
Oh my goodness, yes!  Especially the folks over at tarotforum.net ... once a deck is out of print and hard to find, it magically becomes sooo much better to read with ;)
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SassyWitchin

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Re: The Good-Enough Tool and the Right Tool
« Reply #21 on: February 22, 2013, 07:30:58 pm »
Quote from: Darkhawk;64093
Early in my training with my teacher, I was given an assignment: adopt a couple of certain forms of psychic cleansing and protection, drawn from folk magic sources primarily.  This was something that I wrestled with constantly; I found something that somewhat appealed to me, and I tried to make it work, and indeed, it worked, kind of, sort of.

Some time later, I came back to this assignment with something like dread, as I feared being unable to find somethign that really worked, like all the tools - perfectly sufficient to the task - were an outfit that just didn't fit right, or which, while fitting, were just not attractive to wear.  And I found an idea, chased a thought sideways, put a little twist on it, and found something perfect.  And when I shared what I'd done with my teacher, she said that it was pretty awesome.

This is something that happens to me a lot - I have something that's good enough (usually something that works a good deal better than that particular assignment!), and I'm content with it, and don't think I need to go any further with it.  I have an adequate tool, a perfectly good methodology and technique, or whatever.

And usually, I do - I mean, I have my ritual cup sitting on my nightstand right now.  It's nothing hugely special, it holds water just fine in a good quantity for my needs, it has a pleasant shape and meets my quirks for wanting such a thing.  But I don't have any illusion that it's anything beyond good enough for my purposes.  It's possible there exists a cup out there that is mindblowingly amazing for me.  (I suspect in the real world I'll make one when my studio works.)  This ain't it.  But it does what I need it to.

I'm not a very heavy tool user, at least not in my head.  But I look around, and I see the collection of scarves I use for one set of protection magic, the perfume bottle I use for another bit of protection magic, I see my aforementioned cup, I note that the tools I put away so that the Celt's mother wouldn't see them haven't been put back where they belong...  So I think my head is wrong on this.  And some of my tools are good enough.  And some of them are The Right Tool.

Does anyone else understand what I'm talking about here?  How many of your tools are good enough, and how many of them are Right?  How do you know when a tool is The Right Tool?  How does it affect your magic to work with something that precisely attuned?  Can you make a good enough tool into a Right Tool?  How?

 
I get what you're saying you look for something but instead find/make something just right for you. Great isn't it

Lokabrenna

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Re: The Good-Enough Tool and the Right Tool
« Reply #22 on: February 22, 2013, 10:22:12 pm »
Quote from: MysticalMama;64427
Oh my goodness, yes!  Especially the folks over at tarotforum.net ... once a deck is out of print and hard to find, it magically becomes sooo much better to read with ;)

 
I post at tarotforum.net and can testify that this is true. A great example is the Greenwood, no one really gave it that much attention, now that it's OOP and hard to find suddenly everyone loves it, and don't get me started with the unholy row re: The Wildwood Tarot.

Kylara

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Re: The Good-Enough Tool and the Right Tool
« Reply #23 on: February 23, 2013, 11:07:05 am »
Quote from: Darkhawk;64093
How many of your tools are good enough, and how many of them are Right?  How do you know when a tool is The Right Tool?  How does it affect your magic to work with something that precisely attuned?  Can you make a good enough tool into a Right Tool?  How?

 
When I first started, I was in high school and still living at home.  My tools were what I happened to have on hand, and what could be hidden.  I had an old folding chessboard, which was hollow inside (to store the pieces), which became my altar, and I stored my stuff inside.  I used a pocket knife, whatever incense and candles I could get my hands on and I don't remember if I had anything as a cup at the time.  They were definitely 'good enough' tools.  I knew they weren't the ideal, they weren't even close to the stuff I pictured in my mind when I thought about tools...but they were what I had.

The first tool I bought myself was a new blade.  I had in mind a double edged dagger with a black handle (very back in the day, it was what everything said I needed so it is what I wanted).  I didn't want a plastic handle, but that was what I could afford, so it is what I ended up getting.  I bought a dive knife, that had a little plastic sheath and a molded plastic yin/yang on the handle.  Again, this was a good enough tool.  I felt it was a step up from the pocket knife, and it felt good to be actively working on improving my tools, but even at the time I knew that it wouldn't be my working blade forever.

The one I use now I have had for quite a lot of years.  It is absolutely not what I would have told you I had pictured in my head, yet as soon as I saw it I knew I had to have it.  It is much longer and heavier than any other blade I had used, the crossguard is brass (not a metal I typically like) and the handle is rings of bone in tan/green tones.  But I have loved it since I got it.  It is definitely my right tool (at least for now, I don't discount the possibility that I might need something different in the future).

I think it is possible to turn a good enough tool into a right tool, but much harder with some tools than others.  I am not a blacksmith of any sort, so altering blades is mostly beyond my means.  I have done minor handle re-wrapping before which definitely increased a tool's appeal for me.  I could see transforming a simple good enough glass vessel of some sort (be it a chalice, bowl, jar or bottle) into the right tool with some embellishment (glass etching kits are pretty neat, wire wrapping or adding beads or fabric can completely customize something as well).

As far as being less effective with a good enough tool versus a right tool, my thoughts are this:  if I don't have a right tool, then not working is less effective than what I might do with a good enough tool.  I have tools that I feel are right, tools that are good enough, and tools I don't have (still have no statuary, have not seen anything remotely in my price range that I don't hate).  Statues are a good example for me.  If I found something I liked okay but wasn't perfect, I could work with it, but I won't work with something I dislike just to have something.  I can, and do, work tool-less from time to time, so tools are a bonus to me not a requirement.
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Caroline

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Re: The Good-Enough Tool and the Right Tool
« Reply #24 on: February 23, 2013, 12:07:00 pm »
Quote from: RandallS;64123

I'm known people who fell into the "searching for the perfect tool" trap. They waste a lot of time searching for "perfect" and sometimes even put off actual work because their tools, while adequate for the job, just aren't  amzing for the job. I refuse to fall into this trap -- because I know how easy it would be for me to fall into "waiting for perfection".

 
I'm a bit like this, too. I'm very, very detailed oriented but things must also have some degree of 'right' resonance. So my compromise is to find something 'good enough' and work with it, but acknowledge that I'm open to finding something 'perfect' - and oddly enough, when I do find that perfect thing, I wasn't looking for it.

Of course then my issue is what to do with the 'good enough' thing that I've used for years, and have often become attached to, now that the 'perfect' thing has shown up.

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Re: The Good-Enough Tool and the Right Tool
« Reply #25 on: February 23, 2013, 07:11:52 pm »
Quote from: Caroline;97709
Of course then my issue is what to do with the 'good enough' thing that I've used for years, and have often become attached to, now that the 'perfect' thing has shown up.

 
This is something I tend to go back and forth on as well and I still haven't found a good solution. I don't like donating things to thrifts because you never know how they will be handled - religious ones in particular I've found can be skittish about obviously pagan items, and some don't like sharp objects or weapons.

There was an awesome store in Phoenix that sold some objects secondhand as well as books, and took other items in donation, either for auctions or just to put them in the hands of people who needed them and couldn't afford them. If I had a shop I'd love to do that, but I understand why many can't, either.

When we were moving, we made a "pagan yard sale" post on Craigslist listing tarot decks, statuary and other things that other people might find useful, and we had some bites from people. That might be an option if you live in a busy enough area?
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Re: The Good-Enough Tool and the Right Tool
« Reply #26 on: May 01, 2013, 04:26:11 pm »
Quote from: Darkhawk;64093


Does anyone else understand what I'm talking about here?  How many of your tools are good enough, and how many of them are Right?  How do you know when a tool is The Right Tool?  How does it affect your magic to work with something that precisely attuned?  Can you make a good enough tool into a Right Tool?  How?

 
I don't necessarily do magic, per se.(or at least I havn't thought about what I do in that framework) I have different implements that I use to assist me in energy manipulation, most of which I made, some of which I found, others were given to me. I seem to find that things progress in this fashion, The things I make tend to be good enough for what I make them for, then something that works fantasticly will come to me either through a gift or being found.  I take awhile, learn that object and figure out why it works so much better for the task than what I have made for it, and then use those realizations to make other things better. That's one of my ways of turning good enough tools into the right one. but It can come back to just making, remaking, changing how you think about what your making, and alot of practice/happenstance/realizations later, take something that was doing the job but not cutting the cake just so, and getting it there.
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