As with many aspects of the esoteric and occult and even mainstream religion, magic is composed of dualities. The most obvious divide is that of black ("bad") magic and white ("good") magic. From time to time, when acquaintances find out that I mess with the craft, they immediately ask "but you're doing the good kind of magic, right?" So, I personally prefer the Latin terms Maleficium and Beneficium. These better encapsulate the difference between working with ill intentions (malice) and working to heal (benefit). Although something of a trope, a sort of stereotype rooted more in both folklore and mass media than in how real magic is done in the world, this duality still helps classify our knowledge of the magical arts.
There are a few things you should consider before starting your ritual. How does the ritual fulfill your intentions? How does it aid in discovering your intentions? Magic, especially modern magic, tends to be unifying rather than dualistic. The goal is to unify the higher (mind/divine) and lower (physical/experiential). Magicians do this by making things happen through uniting themselves with the universe at-large, by spell-casting (magic) and/or being mindful (mysticism). Lastly, it is crucial to record every step in a journal along with all external factors that affect you and the operation. This is one of the only ways to observe and adjust your practice as you develop.
Magic. We all know what it is. But when asked to define it, it can be a bit tricky to give it a good definition. So let's start with the basics. All types of magic have two parts: the belief part and the practical part. If you didn't believe magic was real, then why practice it at all? If you don't use magic for anything, why believe in it? It is worth noting up front that the magic this article talks about is also sometimes spelled "magick." This is mostly to distinguish it from the kind of magic with card tricks and rabbits being pulled out of hats. Another reason some spell it this way is because they use the "k" at the end to stand for "kteis." Kteis is a Greek word representing the passive or reproductive powers of nature. In this sense, magick is balanced against the oppressive aspects of more dogmatic religious traditions that seek to regulate individual behavior and enforce social norms.