The sum of all the knowledge about spells, magic and rituals that draw on evil and malevolent powers.
The term is thought to come from the confusion of the etymology of necromancy with the Latin word niger, which means 'black'. The Devil was also portrayed as black.
According to the prevalent view, the black magician is an individual who enlists the aid of Satan and/or his spawn, making pacts with these demons, promising his immortal soul in exchange for a lifetime of riches and gratifications or for a glimpse into the great mysteries of the cosmic order.
In modern times, people who believe in or claim to practice magic, or magick (alternative spelling), use the term to describe the whole of knowledge on harmful magic, the kind they consider taboo, invoked to kill, injure, or cause destruction, or for personal gain without regard to harmful consequences to others, as opposed to the good white magic that they do profess to carry out.
The term Black Arts could also be used to describe a collective of rituals and practices that some group or person does not approve of.
In a lighter note, Black Arts is also the name for the collective artistic achievements of black persons as a group, and of a martial arts combat system.
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