Both, however there is a definite distinction between the two. I hope nobody finds this offensive as this is just my opinion and you are free to have your own as well, but this is how I see it.
It’s possible to be both, we have seen countless times across multiple magick oriented forums those who started magick at age 15, 18, 24, or even 31 or 45. We have seen those who were born into pagan or Satanic families and were exposed to such things from birth or even those of us who grew up in religious homes yet, we learned magick at very young ages like between 5-12 years old on our own, with our without influence from another person.
I fall into the group of living with a relgious family but I started doing magick at the young age of 5, not even really that aware that I was doing real magick. But I later learned that I do have some relatives who are very secretively wiccan. Everything I learned was either self taught, I saught after the materials on my own, or it came directly from the source of such magick. I was drawn to magick very young, feeling as if it was a natural part of me, that I had maybe been a witch or something in a previous life because if not, then why else was I so obsessed with all of this? My parents had me in church from the time I was 2 weeks old til I was 10 and they finally started letting me skip some church, then at 14 I stopped going all together.
They tried many many times to raise me as a christian but unlike most people, I did not believe what they told me simply because they were my parents and were older than me. Many times, I got the ever living snot beat out of me by my mom (dad never laid a hand on me!) for refusing to convert to their beliefs but eventually my mom realized the more she tried to convert me the worse my rebellion became and the more I embarassed her in front of her christian friends. But it was like, I was just immuned to indoctrination, it never phased me or changed the way I view the world.
So my point is, some of us can be born to be magicians, like we were just pre-destined to succeed and magick comes to us naturally. Those who succeed at first try or in a short amount of time they master a skill that takes others several months or years to learn. Those who seem to connect to spirits effortlessly and receive many prophecies or visions. Then there are those who discover magick later in life, bored with their current religious upbringing or unhappy with their life maybe looking for a quick and easy way out.
But either way, things can go good or bad. There are natural born pre-destined magicians that can master their skills with little to no flaw and do many great things with their lives and others, but there are learned magicians who can do the same. I have met a handful of people who did not start practicing witchcraft until age 17 and by the time they were 25 they could work wonders with their magick and practically move entire worlds around at their command.
I have also, however, seen those to whom it was obvious at a very young that they were meant to live a magickal life but they allowed indoctrination and schools to teach them that this stuff is not real, time to grow up now, because if you live in a world of fantasy and magick you will be homeless within a few months but if you come to our reality and get a 9-5 job that you hate, marry some bitch that takes all of your money, have 2.5 kids with her, a dog, a cat, and that lovely little white siding house in the country with your Chrysler minivan, then you will succeed. They lose touch of their gifts and suppress them and they slowly but surely fade away. Or some may even have their family members trying to convince them to use their power, but determined to not follow the same traditions as their meema and their mother and their auntie Jo-Lynn they ignore magick.
So I believe, some people are in fact chosen, not a sense like an anti-christ weird cult you are special my child, kind of way, like in a pre-determined by past lives and written in the stars kind of way, for lack of a better way to explain. And others find their calling later in life, maybe even some who did not come to magick until they were 16 were also pre-destined for it but their family was so controlling and pushy they were unable to hear its call? But either way, you can be a failure or you can have success and that, is ultimately up to the magician himself or herself.
How you use your natural gifts or acquired abilities are up to you. Some of us were not cut out to be magicians no matter how much we think we were. Those that are too full of pride to admit that their spells do not work because they are making mistakes or not following protocol, or not developing their magickal abilities good enough before they go diving into the advanced stuff but instead, they would rather blame it on magick as a whole, too prideful to admit their failure so they say, I’ll just call those others magicians a bunch of liars, say magick isn’t real anymore and give up on it because this stuff obviously does not work. When the problem the whole time was that particular magician, their laziness, their stubbornness, their impatience to learn things in slow steps, and their wonderful amazing pride they cannot bear to see put to shame because NO, they don’t make mistakes ever!
Yeah, you know the kind of people I am talking about. We have had a few of those here too. They ask for help, they get real answers, but when they learn that THEY are their only problem they won’t have anything to do with such an answer so they start name calling, cussing, pointing blame and saying those who tried to help them were trying to make them look bad or that they are stuck up know it all wannabes. So some can never do magick, they were not cut out for it, they lack the drive, ambition, patience, and personality for it. Magick is NOT a one size fits all thing no matter what you believe. Sure, anyone can pick up a book, read a spell, and pretend to be a magician because they’ve read a book or two about it, but can they do spells, evocations, and real magick? Or are they just talk with no walk?