Oriental Magic by Idries Shah

‘[A] wealth of illustrated material.’

Times Literary Supplement

Available worldwide in all formats – including ebook and audio – on Amazon. In the USA go to Amazon.com, in the UK Amazon.co.uk, in India Amazon.in. You can also order Oriental Magic in paperback and hardback from your local bookstore — and in the UK and USA we also recommend bookshop.org; and in Australia and New Zealand Booktopia.

One of Idries Shah’s earliest classic works exploring arcane cultures, human esoteric beliefs, and ancient magical practices and ceremonies.

Oriental Magic is recognised as one of the most in-depth studies on magic and its uses in diverse cultures from Europe to the Far East. Profusely illustrated, the book was the culmination of several years of research into rare artifacts, obscure manuscripts and travels into remote areas where strange magical practices endure.

Shah includes personal accounts of ‘training’ under a Ju-Ju witch doctor in Sudan, a demonstration of Hindu levitation, and details of the invisible rulership of Sufism. The book also contains an ancient Brahmin spell for immortality. Revealed is an astonishing similarity in magical beliefs, practices and terminology of places as diverse as China, the Middle East, Scandinavia and Africa.

In addition to being a compendium of magical practices throughout human history, Oriental Magic is a study of how, what and why people think the things they do. As such the book constitutes a powerful work on human nature.

‘Essential reading...’

The Book Exchange

‘Heaped with various jewels...’

Time and Tide

‘Fascinating and illuminating.’

Hibbert Journal

‘A serious work of considerable anthropological interest.’

Contemporary Review

‘A point of view of which too little has been heard in the past.’


‘A serious contribution to knowledge… deserves to find a wide audience of educated readers.’

Dr Louis Martin, Director of the Ecole d’Anthropologie de Paris