Drawing Down the Spirits, III (6-9)








The Spirits


On the Nature of Spirits



How Spirit-Possession Worketh



Hearing Gods



Sacred Spaces




On the Nature of Spirits


p. 104 non-superior status of a mortal sojourner, visiting as tourist the divine worlds

"Those of us who want to world-walk for real[,] need to get over the idea that Otherworlds exist for our own edification and amusement. ... We are there by the sufferance of the gods and spirits who order those realms, and those worlds are their territory, not ours."

{These warnings about the non-superiority a of mortal in divine worlds, are similar to the warnings about the non-superiority a of mortal in dream-worlds (and especially about the need to refrain from claiming any dream-world as one's own), as warned about by Robert Waggoner in his Lucid Dreaming : Gateway.}

{As usual, the authors abstain from any mention of dreaming in this context, although dreaming is highly relevant to it.]

pp. 105, 107 definition of /deity/

p. 105

"In Neo-Paganism, most of our important spirits are what we refer to as a god {or a goddess}. To us, that generally means an entity who is bigger, older, and wiser than we are (and perhaps than we'll ever be). It is an entity who sees further down the threads of Causality and Possibility and may guide or protect or teach us, or in some cases owns us. ...

p. 107

A friend once said. "If it's bigger, older, and wiser than I'll ever be in this lifetime, then I treat it as a God.""

"we do not expect our gods to be either omnipotent or omniscient."

{All deities are effectively omniscient and omnipotent, in the sense that they have immediate access (through telepathy) to any information for which they have any use; and are empowered (by higher levels in the divine hierarchy) to accomplish whatever task they are divinely set (by the similar higher levels) to perform.} {They may not, however, rendre answers to quaestions deemed (by them) irrelevant or insignificant, and thus may superficially to appear to be not all-knowing.}

p. 108 variations in Gede [/Ghede/ in Italian orthography] gods

"what we consider the "name" of a god might more properly be considered a surname [of an entire category of deities]. This is particularly true of ... African-diaspora traditions. The Ghede, for example, are related in that they are all spirits connected with death, sex[ual allusions], and raucous good humor, but there are ... many different Ghede ... . ... Most will tell dirty jokes, but some will be dead ... serious and somber. Most will dance the banda ... but some will sit quietly and at least one, Ghede Zaringuey, will crawl about on the floor like a spider."

p. 109 allegedly non-linear time

"Because time in the Other Realms is nonlinear compared to our world, it is possible for spirit-workers to ... encounter a god in his youth and later as an elderly man, for example."

{The reason why the same deity can appear as young or as old, is not necessarily because "time in the Other Realms is nonlinear", but rather may be because deities are easily able to shift the shape of their immaterial bodies, and do so in accordance with whatever impression they may wish to make on the mortal to whom they are appearing.}

p. 109 Law of the Universe?

"It does seem to be a Law of the Universe that the deities themselves cannot disobey -- when you call a deity by a specific title, that's the one you get, every time."

{In actuality, this is not so much any "Law of the Universe" as simply the innate politeness of the deities, that they accede to such specificity in a requaest by mortals.}

p. 110 allegedly non-divine praeternatural beings

"in the Other Realms, there are many more beings that are not and which do not claim to be divinities. Among the most famous of these are the Faeries of European legend and the Djinni (genies) of Islamic lore."

{These categories of praeternatural beings were accepted as among the most sublime of the deities, until the Christian and Muslim political authorities decreed their demotion (as though mortals could arbitrarily demote immortals!).} {Once goverments of mortal human have declared mighty deities demoted, such deities will politely accede to the rude edicts of mortal governments, and thereafter "do not claim to be divinities."}

p. 111 allegedly shamanic

"the shamanic use of spirits to pass through their bodies and hands and heal ... their clients. Some shamanic traditions also send smaller spirits temporarily into the body of the client in order to do the job."

{This is a description of occult Taoist, and not typical shamanic, practices. Siberian shamans utilize, instead, a method of traveling in their dreams, guided by a spirit-guide, to a place whence the sick person's "health" (a praeternatural portion of that person) can be recovered in order to be restored to the patient's physical-material body.}

p. 112 curative Keltic "shamanism"

"A shaman or shamanic practitioner ... might make an alliance with the Grandfather Spirit of the Wolf, who will come through their body and reach into a sick client and "take out" something that the spirit-worker can't reach -- for example, the life-force inhabiting "evil" bacteria or viruses".

{This is rather different from Siberian shamanism, which is confined to functioning in dreams; and different from Amerindian shamanism, which is confined to functioning by means of dreams. It may be more capable of curing ailments of the physical-material waking-world body, however.}"

p. 112 temporarily exchanging bodies with a beast

In "one rather rare form of "shamanic" lycanthropy ..., the [human] spirit-worker

"trades souls"

{Sic : read "trades bodies". [Consciousnesses cannot be traded.]}

with an animal spirit, allowing them [viz., the animal spirit] to use the human flesh for a time while they [viz., the human spirit-worker] travel in the animal spirit's shape in the Otherworlds.

While all such accounts seem to come from the point-of-view of the [human] spirit-worker doing their {his or her} journeys, and there is very little written about what the animal spirit

does with the human body".

{This is reverse from the case with "walk-in" and/or "walk-through" body exchanges by human with extraterrestrial (as recorded by flying-saucer contactees) : all such accounts seem to come from the point-of-view of the extraterrestrial (who hath become embodied in an earthling-body).}

p. 114 medicinal-plant spirits

"A spirit-worker who has an alliance with the Grandfather Spirit of a particular plant may take the spirit of that plant into them, or put it into the client, in order to do healing.

{According to the book Plant Spirit Medicine, the plant-spirit will merely accompany the mortal envisioner-herbalist in order to effect cures in patients (not, apparently, entring an mortal's physical-material body, but functioning from a transcendent plane-of-existence).}

This is particularly effective in that one can actually ingest some of ... that plant ... .

{According to the book Plant Spirit Medicine, it is not even necessary for the mortal practitioner to use the physical-material plant : the plant-spirit can cure directly.}

If there is an alliance with the spirit, it will travel along ... creating an extra "kick" for healing."

p. 115 entheogenic-plant spirits (quoted from Pagan spirit-worker S.M.)

"Skullcap moved inside me to teach me ...; she was quite solidly in me ... . The fly agaric spirit, Father Recap, hasn't slipped completely inside, though he has overshadowed me ... . In a sort of reverse possession, I have been taken into the ruling Wormwood spirit and was held inside him for a time."

p. 116 land-wights

"The largest spirits on this [continental] scale are the land-spirits, the guardians of specific areas of the Earth. They vary in size from the one that might guard your back field to the one in charge of an entire mountain range. ... Generally the land-wights will possess someone only in an emergency, if they feel that their land is being seriously threatened".

p. 116 elemental spirits & local sprites

"smaller elemental spirits are the various air, fire, water, and earth elementals. ... Elementals have a short attention span and are further removed from humanity than the giants and Faeries ... . Local sprites ... can be ... naiads (river and lake [female] elementals), nereids (ocean [female] elementals), and various other entities".

pp. 117-8 sexual intercourse between a couple, while both of whom are possessed by spirits; offspring of such acts of sexual intercourse

p. 117

"There are ... many other forms of creatures {or rather, creators} with their own Otherworlds ... . ... Like the gods [and goddesses], they may sometimes take psychically gifted humans as lovers, ...

although those connections are usually made on an astral level ... .

{In a shamanic context, howbeit, those connections are usually made on a dreaming-level.}

According to some legends, they may also utilize ... possession during the physical act of mating ... of two human beings who may be hosting one or more nonhumans [viz., hosting possessive deities]. According to the theory,

if these entities are astrally present

{mentally, not "astrally" : deities are indigenous to the mental-plane and above}

in the bodies at the time of conception of a new human {body}, they are able to slightly alter the child's genes so as to make it more like the inhabiting Faery/Giant ... . ...

It has also been noted that when a member of one of these {praeternatural} non-human species approaches a human out of nowhere, the reason

p. 118

most often given is that this person has ... their genetic ancestry, and this is what makes them {him or her} "interesting" to the nonhuman involved."

p. 119 divination by spirit-possession in Uliti in Micronesia

"on the island of Ulithi a baby who died soon after birth in 1839 returned to work as a powerful prophet and healer for his father, who would call him down by drinking coconut oil and chewing mint leaves. When possessed by the baby's spirit, the father would speak in a high falsetto voice and would diagnose disease and warn of oncoming typhoons." ("DSP&TM")

"DSP&TM" = Francis X. Hezel : "Distribution of Spirit Possession and Trance in Micronesia". http://micsem.org/pubs/articles/socprobs/frames/distspirfr.htm



How Spirit-Possession Worketh


p. 128 entry-points on one's body for possessing-spirits

Persons possessed by spirits "regularly generally say that they definitely have a sense of a "hole" or "door" in their astral body, where the spirits can enter. The most common sites for these holes seem to be either the crown chakra at the top of the head or the base of the skull {cranium} (what some Afro-Caribbean faiths refer to as the ache` point). A small minority reports the gods coming through the middle of their back, at about heart chakra level."

pp. 129-30 deity-possession for training-purposes

p. 129

"there are skills that can't be taught to you through words but instead require a wight to enter your body at least partially and "motor you through" the skill. ... This also includes ... when the wight in question needs ... to show the person how a type of energy is moved, or a type of magic is done."

p. 130

[Heathen spirit-worker G.K.] "Once I was taken in hand by Loki and Odin. possessory work became one of the training methods that They commonly used with me. ... Eventually, Odin gave me a spirit song ... . ... Using the receptive state the song put me in, He would modify me ... until He could slip into me deeply and without effort."

[Pagan spirit-worker F.T.] "I have experienced ... god-possession ... for the purpose of training. ... Gods are somewhat different when they come to teach -- the lesson seems to come through much more clearly."

pp. 133-7 levels of godhood-assumption by a mortal

p. 133

1. Enhancement. This is speaking about a deity : for example, giving an invocation in the third person ... . ...

2. Inspiration. ... you speak for rather than about them. ...

p. 134

Inspiration is ... a matter of ... imagination about what they might want.

3. Integration. ... here you speak as the deity in the first person. This is generally done ... as the highlight of a ritual. ...

4. Aspecting. ... . ... one is a full channel for the energy of the deity ... . The individual is being a vector for their energy, but not their actual presence. ...

p. 135

5. Shadowing. ... There is a feeling of them [deities] {as} being just

p. 136

behind your shoulder, and able to speak clearly to you (and some [such deities] may keep up a running commentary during shadowing experience {with the deities' voices being heard by the mortal}), but they are not using {controlling} your body, and you are in full control of your reactions. You may "take dictation" and relay their words ... . ...

6. Channeling. ... the entity is allowed to make use of a human being's voice

{I have (decades ago) undergone having words spoken through my mouth involuntarily (without my intentful participation); but in every case I had chosen beforehand what words were to be uttered by the involuntary voice.}

or hands {for use of hand-signaling?} but does not take over the whole body. This tends to be more common with "lesser," non-divine spirits ... . ...

7 Possession. ... the deity comes into the person's body, displacing their {his or her} own personality/soul for a time, and speaks directly to the audience or client. ...

Generally the [possessee]'s consciousness at this point is either extremely distanced ([possessees] have reported seeing and hearing things as if underwater or from a long way away, in a very dissociative manner, or the sound might be turned off entirely)

{This commonly can happen to a shaman in a waking-state shamanic performance.}

or they are completely unconscious and have no memory of the experience. ... Pagan group Asphodel ... often refers to the former as being "in the backseat behind the safety glass" (while the deity is "driving") and the latter as "locked in the

p. 117

trunk." (For ... the controversy of full unconsciousness versus partial consciousness. see chapter 13 ... .)"



Hearing the Gods


p. 140 Hellenic dreaming

"Socrates was drawn to a life of philosophy by a recurring dream, and the Pythagoreans and Orphics taught that during sleep the soul left the body, took trips, visited gods, and communed with other spirits." ("H&RhD")

"H&RhD" = Cyd C. Ropp : "A Hermeneutic and Rhetoric of Dreams". JANUS HEAD MAG. http://www.janushead.org/3-1/cropp.cfm

p. 140 locations of the soul in the consciousness-states (according to the Aitareya Upanis.ad http://www.erowid.org/spirit/traditions/hinduism/hinduism_upani_aitareya.shtml )

in the __ is located the Self

while we __






"sleep the dreamless sleep"

pp. 142-3 dream-incubation

p. 142

"In China, Buddhists seeking enlightenment through dreams could spend the night in the Jiuxian (Nine Immortals) Tower of the Shizhusi (Stone Bamboo Temple) in Fuqing, Fujian Province." ("S&BT")

p. 143

"In Haiti, Vodouisants seeking dream guidance from their spirits will frequently perform an ... illumination." (HVH)

"S&BT" = "Stone and Bamboo Temple in Fujian, China". http://www.china.org.cn/english/MATERIAL/54660.htm

HVH = Kenaz : Haitian Vodou Handbook. Rochester (VT) : Destiny Bks, 2006.



Sacred Spaces


p. 163 recommended books on tending an altar

Draja Mickaharic : Spiritual Cleansing Handbook for Psychic Protection. Weiser Bks, 2003.

Ivo Dominguez Jr. : Castings : the Creation of Sacred Space. SapFire Productions, 1996.

Jason Miller : Protection & Reversal Magic : a Witch's Defense Manual. New Page Bks, 2006.


Kenaz Filan & Raven Kaldera : Drawing Down the Spirits : the Traditions and Techniques of Spirit Possession. Destiny Bks, Rochester (VT), 2009.