On another forum I saw a question about spirits. The poster wanted to know how to do magick to get rid of a spirit that had linked with another person. The poster was worried that he would be working against the Wiccan Rede by forcing the spirit to do something it didn’t want to do.
You may have seen similar posts or heard questions like this. I have a few problems with it.
What is a Spirit?
My first question is what does this person think a spirit is? Today, some people (notably members of religious sects) put the blame for all their problems on spirits or demons. Are you an alcoholic? Are you broke? Are you unhealthy? Did you lose your job? Are some of your teeth missing? Did you get a divorce? You’re not responsible for any of these things! There’s a demon or spirit in you for each of these problems.
Uhh, no. Sorry. If you have a problem in your life you’re responsible.
Wait! Some problems are things people can’t have caused. If they’re born with a medical condition certainly they’re not responsible for that! If the company they work for goes out of business and people lose their jobs, they can’t be responsible for that!
Nope. They’re not responsible for causing those problems (some may point to karma from a past life as being a cause, but it’s not something in their current life that’s the cause). However, we’re all responsible for dealing with those problems now. As a result of this experience, what do you need to learn in order to achieve the most you possibly can in this life? This is the concept of personal responsibility rather than victimhood.
In my personal experience, I was working for an advertising agency that made the mistake of focusing on one major client. When the client went to another agency, the agency I was working for had to cut back. I was laid off. On the same day I applied to take training in advanced computer techniques at U.S.C. I was able to get into the class, got training, and not only went on to get good-paying jobs at companies such as Disney, I eventually became an assistant to the instructor for the classes at U.S.C. Although I lost my job at the ad agency, I refused to be a victim.
So if spirits don’t go around causing problems for people, what are spirits? Simply put, they are non-physical entities having consciousness and manifesting a certain type of non-physical energy which can become apparent in the physical world. If we don’t like the energy they manifest we call them “demons.” However, that’s our interpretation of their energy. I reveal this concept a bit more in a story format in my occult-oriented novel, The Resurrection Murders.
How Do You Know It’s A Spirit?
The original poster figured that a spirit had attached itself to another person. How does he know? Similarly, how do you know if you’ve been cursed or someone put the evil eye or a black magick spell on you? The answer, in my opinion, is this: You live on the physical plane. Therefore, physical causes should be the first thing you look for when it comes to any problem you experience. If, after possible physical causes have been eliminated, then you should look for non-physical causes. Do this “up the planes.” That is, after the physical, look to the mental. After the mental, look to the emotional. Only after you are sure the causes of issues are not of the physical, mental, or emotional planes should you consider a spiritual plane cause.
The original poster did not say whether he had looked at physical, mental, or emotional causes of whatever it is that the poster thinks is spirit-caused. People who jump from problem to spirit causation often fail in resolving problems because they’ve ignored the actual cause in one of the other planes. So how do you know if a problem is caused by a spirit? I would give you the advice of a believer in spirits, Sir Author Conan Doyle, who used his most famous creation, Sherlock Holmes (in the story The Sign of the Four), to say,
â€¦when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains,Â however improbable, must be the truth.
When you have made the determination that it is impossible for the cause to be physical, mental, or emotional, Â it is perfectly reasonable to assume it may be spiritual and use magick to get the spirit or “demon” to leave.
Against the Spirit’s Free Will?
The original poster wondered if by doing magick to make the spirit leave he would be forcing the spirit to do something against its will and thus disobeying the Wiccan Rede. I have often seen a similar argument used against the idea of spirit evocation as described in my Modern Magick. How dare I force a perfectly happy spirit to leave it’s home and come to a particular part of my magick circle just to answer my questions! I’m working against the spirit’s free will. There’s just one problem with this:
The non-physical entities we call spirits don’t have free will.
That’s why the traditional books on spirits describe what each spirit does. For example, in the Goetia, we’re told that the spirit Bael can give you the secrets of invisibility and Paimon “can teach all Arts and Sciences, and other secret things.” They can only do what is in their nature. You can ask Bael for the location of money or Paimon for the location of a hidden treasure and you’ll get no response.
So a spirit can only do what is in its nature. If it’s in its nature to leave when you tell it to do so by using a particular ritual, it will do so. If it doesn’t leave it’s because you don’t know what the nature of the spirit is. The spirit isn’t resisting your orders, it just doesn’t understand them. Your commands are not in its nature. Give it the right commands, orders that are in its nature to fulfill, and it will do what you ask.
Similarly, if you successfully evoke a spirit it’s not because you’ve made it do something against its will, but because you’ve given it the opportunity to function within its nature.
In a sense, spirits are like computers:
- Perform a set of actions in a certain order and the computer will start and open an application.Â Perform a ritual properly and you’ll evoke a spirit.
- If you’re in a word processing application and try to do some advanced artwork, you won’t have any success. Perform a rite to evoke a spirit but don’t follow the appropriate ritual and the spirit won’t appear.
- Type a letter in a word processing application and it will work well. Do the ritual to evoke a spirit properly and you’ll have success.