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Meaning of imitative magic

im'itative mag'ic

Pronunciation: [key]
  1. magic that attempts to control the universe through the mimicking of a desired event, as by stabbing an image of an enemy in an effort to destroy him or her or by performing a ritual dance imitative of the growth of food in an effort to secure an abundant supply; a branch of sympathetic magic based on the belief that similar actions produce similar results. Also calledCf. contagious magic.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.