Magic goes back to 50,000 B.C. when cavemen performed rituals like burying cave bears as a sacrifice. The cavemen believe that would help them in hunting. In ancient Egypt over 5000 years ago, people used amulets and trinkets to help protect them from evil forces. In the Middle Ages, all Europeans believed in magic. There were people called alchemists who believed in the philosopher's stone, a magic substance that changed any material into gold. In the present, magic still exists. People all over the world continue to practice magic in the form of voodoo, witchcraft, and horoscopes. When practicing magic there are certain objects, words, and actions that are needed or spoken to perform the magic. Usually, the person performing the spell will say a series of words in a special sequence. That is called an incantation or a spell. To accompany the magic words, the person will do some kind of action to go along with the words he said. Magic objects like plants, stones, and wands are used. Any such object is called a fetish. The magic objects are believed to work because a spirit supposedly lives inside of it. In most cases, all or some of these things are included in a magic act.
Anthropologists classify magic as either homeopathic or contagious according to its basic principle. Others divide magic into black magic and white magic. Black magic is portrayed as hurtful magic and white magic as good magic. In homeopathic magic, the person performing the spell will act out what he wants to happen. They also use a model or replica of what they want to affect. Voodoo magicians and witches use homeopathic magic. Contagious magic comes from the belief that after a person has had contact with certain things, they will continue to influence that person. Common examples of contagious magic involve things like fingernails or hair that someone has lost. If you damage a person's fingernail, the person who lost the fingernail should be affected.
People turn to magic as a form of help. For example people use charms to help them with something. Some events may happen by themselves, and people may still credit magic for the happening. Even if magic works only ten percent of the time, people still believe in the power of magic. Many people believe in magic because they feel the need to believe in something. They resort to magic when they feel uncomfortable and uncertain.