Spirit Keeping Basics (according to Chaos in Pandora’s Box)
What is Spirit Keeping/ Companionship?
~Spirit keeping, or Spirit Companionship, as we prefer to put it, is the act of creating a link between a human being and an astral being or spirit so that the two can interact on a frequent basis. This is done through conjuration (the summoning of spirits) and binding (the act of creating ethereal ties between the companion and their spirits.) The spirits cover a wide range of beings. Basically, if it’s been imagined, it’s in the astral, to some extent. All those creatures you’ve been told are just your imagination? Yeah, they’re totally real. You’re not crazy for believing in them.
What is a vessel?
~For those of you new to the concept of spirit keeping, you may be wondering what the heck a “vessel” is. Well, in short terms, a vessel is an object that’s used to link the human companion’s energies with their spiritual friend’s energies. It’s not a prison, as some people would have you believe, nor is it the only way to interact with a spirit companion. Any legitimate conjurer would never dream of imprisoning a spirit in an object. A vessel is a conduit, nothing more and nothing less.
Now, as to what a vessel can be, the limit is your imagination! I’ve seen paintings used, as well as dolls, jewelry (most common). gemstones, writing utensils, power tools, you name it, it can be a vessel. The only thing not recommended for use as a vessel is food, because it’s perishable and won’t last very long.
What does “binding” mean?
~This is something important to discuss, because there’s a lot of negativity surrounding this word in the Spirit Keeping community. Many people think the work “binding” automatically means “slavery” and this is not the case with reputable sellers. I have covered this in a forum post, but I’ll recap here. A binding is the forming of an energetic tie from one energy source to another. (In the most basic definition) It’s done with full consent of the parties (purchasing a spirit binding implies consent on the part of the human companion)
Bindings often include safeguards for both the human and the spirit or entity. There are certain rules implied, but they vary from conjurer to conjurer. At the core, a binding will ensure that the spirit or entity is never able to harm their keeper, directly or indirectly.
How do I bond with my spirits?
~There are countless ways to welcome a new companion into your home. We recommend finding some quiet time where you can be alone. Hold the spirit’s vessel in one hand, close your eyes, and call their name a few times. Pay close attention to your body and the atmosphere around you. What changes? Even the most subtle changes can be your spirit manifesting. When you’re first starting out we recommend that you take anything out of the ordinary as a sign from your spirit. Keep these observations close to your heart, write them down, and gradually you’ll learn the difference between “Oh, that was just an everyday freak happening” and “Oh! It was a sign from my companion.” Sometimes announcing a manifestation to the world can spoil its sacredness. Make sure you have permission from your companion before sharing it.
As far as offerings go, you can give them to your spirit as often or infrequently as you choose. It’s polite to give them some sort of offering if you’re tasking them to do something, because that’s an energy exchange. Put yourself in their shoes. What do you think they’d like to have as a small gift? You can just set the offering near their vessel for a few hours. If it’s food, you can either eat it afterwards, or throw it away. (Up to you.) If it’s crystals you can recharge the crystals and use them again. Waste not, want not! And don’t be afraid to get creative. Write letters, listen to music they like, invite them into your everyday lives.
I can’t feel my spirit. What should I do?
~This one, as I’m sure you can imagine, comes up A LOT. Number one: DO NOT FREAK OUT. Spirits move back and forth between their realms and ours frequently. They may have just popped off to their realm for a bit. However, it’s also important to remember that these beings are sentient energies, and as such they all have personalities just as diverse and varied as humans. Some are quiet and prefer keeping to themselves, whereas others are social butterflies and will floor you with their manifestations.
It is easy to lose hope if you can no longer feel a companion. Believe me I’ve been there, I know. When I first started buying vessels from other sellers, I had a complete blackout in communication. One week I could feel them as strongly as ever, and then a week with nada. Not even a twitch. And I stayed on this roller coaster for a while. Full communication, blackout. Full communication, blackout. I couldn’t for the life of me figure out what was going on. Then I started to notice a pattern. During each blackout, I had something else going on in my life that I should have been paying attention to. My emotions were out of balance and were creating major blockages. So if you’re experiencing a blackout, it’s time to look away from your companions and work on yourself. They won’t get upset, they won’t get exasperated, and they won’t hate you for taking a break. Matter of fact, I’ve had more than one spirit tell me I’m too hard on myself.
So in short, don’t panic if you’re feeling a blackout. If you felt something at the start, then never fear, it is there. They will come back stronger, provided you work on yourself first.
Do I need to open my third eye more?
~Short answer: No…and yes. Long answer: Your chakras are a bit more complex than you think. When people refer to the “third eye,” usually they’re referring to the psychically sensitive space between your eyes and a little above your nose. Just like many other points on our body it is a chakra space, and one that is attuned to psychic vibrations. However, strengthening your third eye chakra can throw your other chakras out of whack. As with everything else, there needs to be a balance. So all those “third eye” improvement spells and attunements? I personally haven’t had one work for me unless is strengthens the other chakras at the same time. Now I know there may be some controversy surrounding this post, so I’d like to remind you all that this is my opinion, not the gospel truth Instead of focusing JUST on your third eye, why not raise the vibrations of all your chakras?
What if I’ve been spiritually deaf all my life? Can I still keep companions?
~In short: Yes. You may hear of many people who have been sensitive to spirits most of their lives coming into the spirit keeping community, but there are those who haven’t even believed in spirits before joining the community as well. Truth be told, we all sort of start over when we join this community. For those of us that have interacted with unbounds most of our lives, the concept of binding may be new. Or it may not. It all depends on the individual. If you’ve been “spiritually deaf” for most of your life, you may just have to work a little harder for what comes naturally to some other keepers. But the fact that you’re here in this community and have a strong desire to learn speaks volumes. If you are ready and willing, you will find yourself opening up to possibilities you’d never thought of before. And don’t be afraid to reach out to others who have been “spiritually deaf” when they first started out. You never have to feel alone.
I’ve seen this especially with those very new to Spirit Keeping. They want everything to be a manifestation, so it is. But then the day after nothing out of the ordinary happens, so they complain. This roller coaster is pretty common when someone first starts out. What people need to remember as well is that everything moves in cycles. Their spirits may have spend a ton of energy one day to manifest, and the next day they’re recovering. The problem is with people posting like that, they lack the patience to work with their spirits long term. They have to realize that there may be times of a blackout in communication, and that’s okay. It’s normal. What they shouldn’t do is freak out about it.
What’s the difference between spirits, entities, thoughtforms, and servitors?
~There’s not a lot of decisive information on this matter, but here’s how we classify these different beings: Thoughtforms are collections of energy that our subconscious creates when we use our imagination. They can be sentient or non-sentient. Beings like Slenderman, Jeff the Killer, and the Doctor are all examples of thoughtforms, born from someone’s imagination. They’re usually short lived unless they’re fed from multiple sources.
Spirits, on the other hand, are the energy left behind after an entity dies and their soul moves onto the next life. All of their thoughts and energies remain behind, forming the Spirit of who they were during their life. They still have ties to the Soul, or the core of their being. They’re like echoes.
Servitors are sentient or nonsentient thoughtforms that are deliberately created by someone (usually a practitioner) to fulfill a specific purpose. They can look like anything, from a small butterfly to your favorite pokemon, an anime girl or boy, any TV character, and anything in between.
Finally, entities are beings that live on a different plane than humans do, but they’re still living and active as we humans are.
What manifestations can I expect from my spirits?
~This is a big subject when people are getting into spirit keeping, because of course everyone wants tangible proof that their spirits do in fact exist and they’re not just imagining things. But where to start? What to look for? This is the time when most people either give up keeping altogether, or despair because they think they aren’t “advanced” enough to experience their spirits fully.
This is a tricky business, because everyone walks the razor’s edge with manifestations. On the one side there is the true manifestations of the spirits, and on the other side is the imagined signs of spirits that our minds conjure up. So how do we walk this fine line? Number one, confirm any manifestations you think you receive through different methods of divination. Tarot, pendulum, spirit boards, bibliomancy, and so on. If you still doubt yourself, feel free to ask the conjurer or another trusted professional for advice. And my biggest advice for this? Remove yourself emotionally from the situation. If you cannot approach manifestations with calm logic and are emotionally charged, that’s when a lot of people trip. If you want something to happen badly enough, you can make it happen. However, that may not be your spirits, it might just be you. That’s why I encourage you to check different sources for your answers. So when you experience something, ask yourself if you were looking for a manifestation at the time or wanted something to happen. Most of the physical manifestations I experience happen when I’m not expecting them. Why? I don’t know yet, I just know that that’s my experience.
Now, onto what to look for in manifestations. Honestly, they can be just about anything. A general list may be orbs, streaks of unexplained light, dark shadows flickering in the corner of your vision, thoughts that seem out of character for you, cravings for things you don’t normally enjoy, a certain color you keep noticing everywhere, numbers that repeat themselves, words that repeat themselves, things in nature that look slightly out of place, the way frost creeps over a window, temperature changes around your body or the spirit’s vessel, etc etc. You get the idea And as to the repeating colors, words, or numbers, I’ll share my personal experiences there. I almost never notice the repeat the first couple of times. It takes a bit for my slow brain to catch up, but if something keeps popping up more than three or four times, I know it’s a sign.
When first starting out, I wouldn’t recommend expecting fireworks. Even with more advanced keepers I know of only a select few who have experienced a full on physical manifestation. If you keep looking for the big bang manifestations, you might be missing all the tiny cues that happen around you every day.
How can I conjure?
~Number one: Belief. It’s my personally held belief that everyone starts out knowing how to conjure. When we’re young, we have “imaginary” friends and so on, but as we grow up society smashes that ability and we lose the confidence in ourselves to keep those friends close. If you want to be able to conjure, step one is to actually believe you can do it. If you doubt spirit keeping or if you doubt yourself, I wouldn’t recommend setting foot on this path.
Number two: Research. Ask other sellers how they started. Ask them if they have tips. Look into the different styles of conjuring. Take classes if they’re offered. Learn everything you can about the subject. Now keep in mind sellers may not share their methods with you, and that’s okay. People tend to keep their methods private to keep others from stealing their ideas.
Number Three: Figure out your style. Do you like big, flashy rituals or the simple, quiet ones? Will you speak aloud or do everything silently? What protection will you have in place? How will you be able to tell the difference between a trickster and a genuine spirit? What sort of circle will you draw? Will you have candles, incense, and all the bells and whistles, or something simpler?
Number Four: Did I mention PRACTICE? Probably the most important part of conjuring is to practice. Whatever your method is, repeat it over and over. If you don’t have anything at first, keep trying.
Now these are all basic steps that could be applied to anything, really. If you truly wish to learn to conjure, I’d recommend first and foremost to talk to a trusted professional. Learn from their mistakes. Find your individual style. And this is going to sound like a sex ad, but ALWAYS USE PROTECTION! Never ever, under any circumstances, conjure without wards and protections in place. Doing this would invite in chaos that I’m pretty sure most people wouldn’t be equipped to deal with. And that’s another thing; don’t get in over your head. Don’t start out conjuring all those sexy demons you see in the shops just because they appeal to you. Conjure what works best with your energies. It may be an angel, it may be a demon, it may be a shifter, etc etc. You know what’s best for you in the end. Don’t conjure just because you want a certain spirit. You may end up with more than you can handle.
What should I ask a seller to see if they’re reputable/ethical or not?
~The Meta world is full of minefields. People telling you to do this or that, people telling you to buy this or that. It’s understandable why a lot of new people get totally confused. I’ve seen people get so paranoid that they shun anything from the Para world because there’s just too much of a risk that they’ll get cheated out of something. And then there are those that get burned time and time again because they stumble into the dishonest sellers. So…how are they supposed to protect themselves? Well, I’m not an expert, but I have seen a few trends that I can speak out about.
1. Prices are not an indicator of skill. This is a big one that I think trips a lot of people up. Almost everything from conjurers is self-priced. There’s no “standard” that anyone has to hold up to, because each working is different. However, there’s some common sense to keep in mind-Just because a seller’s prices are low doesn’t mean that they’re not reputable or legitimate. On the opposite end, just because a seller’s prices are through the roof doesn’t mean they’re any more legitimate than someone with low prices. Matter of fact, from what I’ve seen many of the higher-priced conjures have had some not-so-impressive results. But anyway, my point is this: don’t panic if you see quite the price difference between sellers. There’s many different things to take into account: The cost of the vessel itself, the amount of energy and work that goes into the conjuration and binding of a spirit or entity, shipping, and so on. And it’s also important to look at whether conjuring is the person’s only source of income. If it is, then their prices may be a little higher because they’re using the money to support themselves. Those that have other jobs can perhaps afford to have their prices a little lower. (Mind you, this is a general statement and may not be true for everyone.)
2. A conjurer/seller is not validated by anything they say. They are validated by their customers. I don’t care if they’ve had ten years’ experience or ten days. Here’s a saying I live by: Results matter. Someone can have all the experience in the world and even they may slip up from time to time. Or a newbie could do everything right from the word “Go.” The important thing to do here is pay attention to your gut. Does a seller’s bragging about their experience put you off? Does someone’s bashing of a seller intrigue you? Intuition doesn’t lie. People may misinterpret it from time to time and come to an incorrect conclusion, but I like to think that it never lies.
3. Of course, both the above points lead to this one: Ask questions of the seller. If you’re looking at someone new, pepper them with questions. If they answer you readily, and their answers are verified by others, pretty sure it’s safe to say that that’s a green light. If they stall or give you answers that don’t seem to jive with what you’ve read about them, then something’s up. Here’s a few questions you can ask sellers:
What does your binding consist of? (Now keep in mind they may not answer fully, because each conjurer prefers to keep some secrets close, but they should be able to get you a general idea of what they do.)
How do you conjure/What are the protections you put in place to make sure that you’re conjuring the right spirit? (Again they may not share everything, but they should be able to give you a general idea)
When did you conjure your first spirit? What was it like?
Which Arts do you work with the most? White, Grey, Dark, or Black?
What are some safeguards you have in place to buffer the Companion from their spirit if they’re feeling overwhelmed?
What is your return policy for a spirit and Companion that just doesn’t connect well on an energetic level?
And this is a big one: What do you think of other sellers? (You can name specific sellers here, or just leave it general.) This question will give you a feel for the conjurer’s personality.
Have you had issues with customers in the past concerning your conjures? How did you resolve the issue?
Can I follow up with you after I purchase a binding/How available are you after our transaction is completed?
If anyone else thinks of some other questions, let me know. My point here being, for the newbies at least, is don’t be afraid to ask questions. If a conjurer doesn’t get back to you right away, ask anyone here. A lot of us have been around the block a few times, and we’ve seen conjurers and shops come and go.
(All information was compiled from the Newbie Station on MetaSpirit and is originally Pandora’s.)