Sunday, July 29, 2012

Spirits 101: Victim-Shaming, YOUR consent, And Spirit-Walking





{Picture of my Kuan Yin altar when I lived at my apartment. Placed at the window, she anchored the space and created a natural shield from the window, which is a portal.)


{Trigger warning for mention of parallels between victim shaming in sexual assault situations and hauntings. This is not meant to equate one with the other or make one more serious than the other; I just have a lot of experience and knowledge about victim shaming against assault survivors, so I'm pulling from what I know.}

In my last post, I stressed Spirit-Consent. Not traipsing around like an asshole, generally being respectful of the shit that was there before you, you know, the usual. Today I am talking about the flip-side of that conversation.

You maybe didn't realize it because my last post was focused on only Spirit-Consent--but you have consent too. You have the right to expect the exact same respect from the Spirits you work with that you give them. Because, although you respect their consent, that's not an open invitation for them to blatantly disregard YOUR consent. Respect is not an invitation to waltz in and do whatever they want either.

You have the right to expect to be regarded as an equal in terms of personal space and boundaries. That goes for Spirits, Ancestors, and ESPECIALLY Deities/Gods. Like humanity, actually respecting that boundary depends on the individual. And in the case they don't respect it and you bypass ignorance as an excuse, you need to show them where the boundary is. And sometimes they don't respect that, and then you need to show them where the boundaries are with your fists.

I tried to make it clear in the last post: I am not above throwing Other Beings out on their asses if they don't respect MY clear shields and boundaries. There are things I WILL NOT do OR ALLOW. And they are told this. I respect them and their boundaries only so long as they respect mine. If you have a boundary cross I consider that a personal attack worthy of being dealt with. Even if the spirit is traumatized and crazy, there is a fine line between bending over backwards and respect. There's a fine line between doing offerings and assuaging the spirit because you're not an asshole, and the Spirit haunting you out of malice for the next 15 years just because.

Real-world example. If a God got all in my shit, I'd be like, woah man. Calm the fuck down. You are NOT to be getting into my bodily nonsense, nor anywhere NEAR my body, if you come here again. You are not to touch me, get up close to me, or make weird remarks or advances without my permission. Do it again and I will punch you in the face and exact my vengeance. You'll notice this is exactly how I would handle a human breech of consent situation. There's a reason for that.

For a record of how that went, go see my post on marrying a land spirit. Point? Somebody got punched for not respecting my Underworld Self's autonomy and consent.

In the last post I spoke about being an internet badass, of knowingly going to mess with Spirits because you think your command of them is great or you feel mighty. There is a marked difference between trolling around on purpose and accidentally stumbling onto hallowed ground and making a Spirit-Enemy that follows you home by accident.

And there's a marked difference between that and waking up one day, minding your own non-metaphysical life, to demons on your ceiling.

Becuase, when it comes to Spirits, a lot of times you had no fucking choice in the matter.

There are so many cases of Demonic or BAD nonsense just coming to call on people, just because they want to fuck shit up. Regular, everyday non metaphysical people who are haunted by shit and seriously made a target by a stronger entity looking for a joyride. This is a reality. It happens. And frankly we don't talk about it enough.

Often I see the victim blame game being played when it comes to a bad possession, or a very bad haunting, or a spirit attachment. Often the first question is 'What did you do?' What did you, the person, fuck with, to bring this on? Sometimes, you did something stupid like open a portal 10 years ago. Sometimes you did absolutely nothing.

And you know what? As in a real life situation, a woman has the right to lie completely naked, spread eagled and passed out on a lawn, and not get assaulted. That's simple bodily autonomy and consent. Trying to tell a woman it was her fault--she dressed the wrong way, looked the wrong way, went home with the wrong guy, etc, creates a false dichotomy that makes women (and men) think they can somehow prevent rape. They can somehow prevent another individual's actions. They can somehow control it.

The truth is, you can't. In any rape situation it's the attacker that make a conscious decision to attack. Nothing the person did or did not do could have prevented that decision.

Bringing this back to Spirits. A LOT OF THE TIME, really horrific hauntings/possessions happen to somebody who literally did nothing to invite it. And even if they did--technically, it's their right to NOT get possessed or attacked by shit, as per consent. Does every Spirit follow that? No. Just like our Rape Culture, you have nasty fucking individuals that get off on power and overriding consent.

And a LOT OF THE TIME there is NOTHING the person could have done to prevent the haunting. Many times they're spontaneous, or the person didn't know enough about defense, or the entity was just too plain strong or came to them when they were very young.

My point is when really terrible Spirits happen to regular people, we need to stop assuming it was something they must have invited, or shaming them for doing something stupid. Maybe they played with a Ouija board 10 years ago when they were 7 and BAM! Attachment. How does shaming them solve their problem? It doesn't. And sometimes you're like me and you've done nothing and suddenly Spirits are in your room 24/7. I never asked for it. It just happened.

Sometimes dark entities search kids out and fuck with their heads and give them nightmares and haunt them to feed off the energy. How did the kid invite that shit? They didn't. It just Happened.

Okay, we clear on this? Don't automatically assume it's the victim's fault for somehow causing their own haunting. I seriously doubt someone stood in their house and went YOU KNOW WHAT WOULD BE GREAT RIGHT NOW? My own personal demon possession that ruins my life! Yeah, sounds good! (And even if they did, yes, it might be stupid, but Spirits, and even Demons, are capable of self restraint. It doesn't mean they HAVE to take the bait. It takes 2 to tango.)

So, that said. We're going to discuss how I would go about setting boundaries with unruly Spirits. This implies they can be reasoned with. After that, we'll proceed to when you need to get the fuck out or make them get the fuck out or you're dealing with entities that don't respond well to anything but fists.

How to set boundaries with Spirits in a few easy steps!

1. Lay a good defensive foundation in your home/where you'll do the Work/in yourself.

Even if you live in a good neighborhood, you lock your doors, right? Same applies here. Difference between paranoia and being stupid.

2. Decide what your boundaries ARE. Write them down. Live by them.

You can't make boundaries if you haven't clearly decided where yours are. If you work with Spirits, do you not want them to bother you at work? Do you not want them around your children, even if you work with them? If you work with a Deity, what if it starts getting too handsy/friendly with you? Are you okay with that, or no? What if a Spirit asks for something you're unwilling to do? (One of my extreme never-cross boundaries is animal sacrifice or offerings of meat, due to strong soul taboos against eating or causing suffering in animals.) What if a Spirit asks to possess you? Or doesn't ask? Can you handle that? Do you WANT to? Decide these things for yourself.

3. If a Spirit/Deity approaches you for help or just to be a d-bag, clearly state your boundaries to the Spirit.

 Again, this is assuming the Spirit/Deity is overall pleasant or able to be reasoned with and not a slobbering entity trying to eat your face. Obviously is something is coming at you repeatedly it doesn't give a shit about boundaries. We'll get to that later.

In any case, you can't expect anybody to follow your boundaries if you don't clearly state them. For instance, using the animal offering/sacrifice example above, if I think the Deity might ask for that sometime, I clearly state that I won't be ever doing that for them. This way, if that's a deal-breaker, the Deity/Spirits knows right away and can choose whether they still want to work with me or not. This way everybody knows where everybody stands first. It's a fair situation.

Ask the Spirit/Deity if it has boundaries too. In the spirit of respecting consent, you don't want to be a d-bag either.

3a. Let go of the idea that a Deity, by virtue of being Divine, will never cross a boundary you make for yourself, highest good and love and light and etc etc.

I've had it happen before and it will happen again. Especially when Gods declare you their property without your consent and then your life starts going to shambles and then they try to possess your body without your consent and theeeen you need to put a stop to it. And it's not easy. But it can be done. Ditto for Spirits, etc.

4. If a boundary is crossed, let that Deity/Spirit know it crossed the boundary, and why, and explain it will NOOOOOT be happening again.

Some Spirit/Deities make us uncomfortable on purpose. Like Tricksters, they go out of their way to make us rethink our lives. But even to me this is a marked difference between pushing boundaries and going against them utterly. For instance, if I'm journeying in the Under-realms with a Deity there and I die repeatedly as a transformational experience, that's not crossing my physical boundaries. If something tried to kill me HERE? Yeah, that's crossing my boundaries. And if they try it I will fight back. Another example. For me, Gods getting up in my shit in a physical/sexual way is a positively uncrossable boundary. That shit is mine and mine alone and everybody else can butt out. So if something is trying to get with me in the God-Spousey way they will soon make friends with the walls. And the floors.

And some Spirits maybe honestly didn't realize they crossed your boundary. It's fair to reiterate, just to remove all doubt that it could have been an accident. This way, if it happens again, you'll know why.

By the same token, if a Deity says "No red on my altar, that's a taboo," then you probably shouldn't put that there. It can be considered a boundary it doesn't want you to cross. Again, respect and the two way street idea. They have the right to react badly if you act like an asshole or cross their boundaries on purpose. (Boundaries can be physical Land, too!) But you also have the right to be pissed if they cross your boundaries on purpose. Respect doesn't mean being an Entity-Doormat.

5. If the boundary has been crossed repeatedly and made you legitimately feel unsafe, and/or the Thing doesn't seem to really have a consciousness and/or is legitimately just trying to eat your face off, for no apparent reason, proceed to defensive/offensive maneuvers.

When do I personally go to fuck-off-level? Not for a boundary like "Don't bother me at work, Spirits." Sometimes you have Spirits that are in legitimate and immediate need of help, so they find you wherever. That's fine. Sometimes my Guides/Gods visit me at work/my house, that's fine. Sometimes I have random, non threatening Spirits chilling in my room. We mind our own business. That's fine. That's not crossing a boundary so strict I need to go handle it and be internet badass about it.

But once, when I was asleep, I was possessed by a more or less non conscious Entity in my room. I did really creepy shit like lift the mattress bodily while on it and drop it, repeatedly. I don't remember any of this, somebody else had to tell me that's what happened. That, my friends, is fuck-off-level. When you possess me when I'm asleep and I have no idea who the fuck you are, we have a problem, friends.

Have a Deity/Spirit chilling around your kids and that's a boundary? Whatever, just ghosts. Have a Spirit willfully FUCKING WITH/possessing your child? Fuck off level. Fuck-off level for you should be fluid or situational. There is never one standard Fuck-off level for every person.

Anyway, proceeding onward! What to do when you've reached fuck off level/declared war on an entity that is making your life hell.

0. Refer to the Discernment post: Figure out what you're dealing with.

Do you have a haunting? Is there good reason for it? Was the house built on hallowed ground/somebody died there? Declaring war on regular human Spirits over that is probably not going to work as well as moving them on/helping them.

If you have a haunting and the Entity is definitely not human, then what the hell is it? What kind? Shapeless, formless, Entities that just want to eat your face? Or is it writing on the walls in human blood that it's going to murder your ass? And even if it is, what are you dealing with?

I dealt with a Demon possession (I mean Demon in terms of a Species of entity, not in the evil fear mongering way, aight?) once that was Amadeus of the Christian pantheon. I dealt with it from a Christian exorcism standpoint, because that was the correct pantheon for the Spirit that refused to get the fuck out.

You need to know what, exactly, you're dealing with before you can determine a correct course of action.

1. Refer back to the Consent for Spirit Workers post. Is the Spirit not giving a fuck because you crossed its boundaries/didn't show it respect first? Just be very sure about the actions you'll take.

2. Fortify the fuck out of your house/defenses/children/animals. Your house is YOUR temple, and I want you to defense the fuck out of it.

But Dusken, how do I defense the fuck out of my house?

I'm making a more intense post for this later. But a few ideas.

    1. Salt across every threshhold. BLACK SALT IS BEST, yo. Salt in the backyard, too.
    2. Sage the entire place (which is NOT a defensive mechanism! It's a cleansing mechanism!) mix the ash of the sage/incense with water, and draw X's on all the doors. Don't ask, it scares some kinds of demons away.
    3.  Draw sigils fucking everywhere. You can draw them on paper and stick them to walls, even. Defensive symbols and sigils. It's better if you use one streamed to you directly: sigils that didn't 'exist' before are much harder to break/undo.
    4. Invoke help from guides/deities. Unless of course you're warding against a Deity. Then find a Deity that really doesn't like said other Deity. (If Apollo is coming after you with threats of making you his and sexual advances, how about you go find a Virginal Goddess that abhors rape? You know who doesn't appreciate rape? Hekate. Artemis. Now you get the picture.)
    5. Set up energetic booby traps. Pretend it's the zombie apocalypse and you're that farmer with the red hat and 16 assault rifles on a rocking chair in your house facing the door. I will be going into more detail about this in the next Spirits 101/Defense post. But it's very possible to make energetic "trip wires" around your property, or make it so your animals are alerted if a strange Spirit comes to call.
    6. Make friends with your House Spirit/Land Spirit. Offer it a bargain in return for fortified defenses and letting you know how shit is. I contacted a friend's Spirit for her, and being a Deer, it requested apples, buried weekly. But they never had problems.
    7. Serviors/Thought Constructs. A Chaos-ish idea, this refers to creating an entity specifically to go around and kick shit out. It's like a program that's alive. This is a long tale so I'll keep it for later, but it is possible.

Now that your walls are fortified and shit...

3. Tell the thing to fuck off.

Yeah, you heard me. Fair warning before war is declared. In some rare cases, if you make a solid, unwavering stake on your land/house/self, the Spirit steps off because its will can't match yours. But you really have to be at scary angry level to pull this one off. There can't be fear. It has to be a haunting so bad it throws shit at you daily for you to reach this point. And this obviously isn't going to work with any kind of strong entity/willful thing. Asking something to please not possess you is not going to solve the problem.

Moving on...

4. So the thing didn't fuck off, right?

BUT WAIT! Before you go all Rambo on that spirit, there's something else to remember: Many entities actually can't help their nature. Void or Demonic critters are often (at the lower levels) hungry with a half-consciousness. They may legit not know what they're doing. I've also encountered mentally ill ghosts that had no idea they were smashing shit in the next room. This doesn't mean to have to suffer them. It just means you need to approach removal with the right frame of mind. You're not being an internet badass: in many cases, it's sad as fuck trying to get rid of these things because they really don't know better. You don't have to run in guns a blazing for every case. The intent is not to torture, but to restore balance.


Time to get some serious artillery in here. Consider this your beyond filling the house with white light/fluffy nonsense primer 101. There are a variety of ways to go about it, and I can't suggest one that will work for all situations because they're all unique. (Are you dealing with possession or no, human entity or no, attachment or not, etc etc) But I can suggest some other nonsense. Here are some options on removal that isn't just waving some sage around.

A. Trap the entity in a place where it can be neutralized and moves on of its own accord because it can't 'feed on you' anymore.

This is not an easy thing to do, nor should it be done lightly. I've witnessed/aided in doing this exactly once, because there was a Spirit that literally gave us visions of fires and the bed collapsing on us all the time. We felt extremely unsafe just being in the room. And it wasn't the type of Thing that can be talked to and reasoned with.

This method involves trapping the entity in an object. We used a clear quartz bracelet. I'm not going to go over the method; if you really NEED to know you can find out from the Akashic and guides. But we trapped it in a bracelet, then threw that bracelet in a box that was sealed thoroughly with Babylonian sigils. And then, we stuck that box on a window someplace it wouldn't be opended for months.

When I finally opened it months later, the bracelet was clear. What happened? The entity, devoid of energy, "starved" to the point where it forced its way out. Since it couldn't get back into our room, it went back to the astral from whence it came.

B. If you can, actually Journey and challenge the entity in its own land. Obviously only do this if you're capable of not losing soul pieces in the process.

Notice I'm not going to tell you exactly how to fight and defeat an entity. If you don't know yet, I'm a fan of the theory you're not supposed to know yet. Exception: If it comes after you when you're completely unprepared and nothing you do can stop it. In that case, feel free to contact me and we'll look into it together. It's much safer to have someone with more experience look over the case.


C. Positively flood the house with energetic pitfalls and booby traps. Bonus points if you enlist the help of Deities, Guides or Land Spirits. Two can very easily play at a fear game.

I will elaborate more on energetic pitfalls and boobytraps in the forthcoming Defense post...but calling in outside help is never a bad plan.

D. Alternatively, find somebody who knows how to do one of the above, is experienced and will be able to do it without fucking themselves up.

As I stated above...it's not exactly safe to attempt this if you're not in the right place. I stress asking trusted outside forces (mortal and non) their opinions and guidance first. If possible, that is. And feel free to email me or comment anytime if you have a specific Entity problem. I've seen pretty much everything. Nothing sounds too crazy to me.

5. Provided you got the thing to move on/fuck off, re-cleanse your person, house, kids, pets, etc. Remove any attachments that may have been laid and cut any cords you might have hanging around.

By "cords" I mean energy attachments a Spirit might make to try and leach energy/feed off you from long distances.

Alternatively, ask your Spirits to scan you and cut your cords for you, if you like. A simple meditation for cord-cutting is envisioning a sword slashing all around your aura, cutting all the strings. Proceed to thoroughly cleanse your home/self and set up new wards/defenses.

Then have some alcohol. You'll need it.

I'm sorry for the extremely beastly long post. I just started writing and then realized "Oh, I should include this too..." and it just snowballed. Hopefully it's readable.


OTHER SPIRIT 101 POSTS:

1. Consent for Spirit Walkers

FORTHCOMING SPIRIT 101 POSTS:

3. Defense for Spirit-Walkers
4. 'Moving On' Human/Familial Spirits for Beginners

8 comments:

  1. Well that was intense. I've been lucky so far- there is enough noise to keep most little stuff away and not enough noise to attract anything really hungry. So far.

    I like your advice about enlisting outside spirit help. I can't stress how much help my dragons have been. They've saved my butt a few times, I'm sure. Plus the land spirit here is very friendly to me. I absolutely can't say enough how important it is to maintain good relationships with the local spirits of place. They are often the first to notice something that doesn't belong and have surprising power in removing that something.

    I love your instructional posts.

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  2. Ugh. Thinking about that one time I used a Ouija board with friends as a teen without knowing what the fuck I was doing. I´m sure I opened a permanent portal direct to me for all things nasty and creepy. D:

    Do you consider Reiki a good cleansing tool? Works for me for healing but I haven´t used it much for blasting rooms with the power symbol as was suggested to me by my teacher.

    Also I´m looking forward to that Servitor/Thought Construct post since I might have something similar going on, but I would like a guideline on how to treat my little beasty. And also, you know, figure out how much actual autonomy I´m giving it and act accordingly.

    Also is it just me or do entities just really like to come out at night? I don´t necessarily have a problem with anything specific, but I don´t know if due to trauma when I was young is the reason that I swear when I´m in the dark things are behind me or inhabiting the darkest spots watching me, or the worst, chasing me when I go up the stairs (this has happened in multiple houses). Does this sound paranoid or should I do something about this?

    Love,
    Someone who knows derp about ghosts. :(

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    Replies
    1. I'll be getting my Reiki I for the first time next month so I can't speak to that. My method of energy healing right now is psychic surgery/Shamanic in nature. Mostly I blow shit up with world-breaking Sigils.

      Yo I fucked with Thought Constructs before and forgot to feed them and shit went terribly until I released them. Woops.

      I agree, entities love night time. It's not just a stereotype. I think it's because humans exude fear at night since we can't see shit.

      I run up the stairs too man...I don't want to look back. XDDD

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  3. Hey congrats on the Reiki! Make sure you start with the original Usui Reiki as there are tons of different strains out there. I forgot what it´s called but your teacher should be able to tell you as well as provide proof that their teachers before them go all the way back to Usui (ask to see their lineage). You should also worry if they don´t tell you to do a 21 day cleanse after receiving attunement as not doing this may cause the channels not to be kept open and render attunement as just a really strong treatment instead of a permanent change in your energy channels. Also make sure you don´t have to drive after as feeling light headed afterward is pretty typical.

    Here´s a link on how you can prepare although I´m sure you have other ways to purify yourself: http://www.reiki.org/FAQ/LearningReiki.html#prepare

    Wait you have to FEED them? D: Man...really need to do research now.

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  4. Yup, I personally know the teacher of my class. She works for a gorgeous and legit occult shop I've been to because I was curious about their Shamanic classwork. She's super nice and legit.

    The strain is listed as Usui Ryoho Reiki. I made sure not to take a class from somebody offering something different. xD

    The class is 6 hours too, with a heavy dose of history and theory, which I personally love.

    Driving is an interesting point since I was considering driving up there. Hmmm...

    Thanks for the link! :)

    Yes, usually you need to exchange your energy for theirs. Mine like to be fed.

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  5. Reblogged at http://mygiftfromthegods.blogspot.com.au/

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  6. Gods, I love your blog to pieces.

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  7. Hi dusken,
    Just wanted to say I've been reading your blog for awhile now, and I *love* your instructional posts on how to interact with Spirits and the Otherworlds! I find your writing cogent and down to earth. Keep up the good work! Fortunately I've never had to deal with anything Big n' Nasty (knock on wood), only a parasite once... anyway, great post :)

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