I appreciate your feedback, but I feel like there is a clear misunderstanding of what we & this community consider Spirit Keeping and what, perhaps, you & your buying community considers Spirit Keeping.
To put my following post into perspective, we've been doing this a long time and it's absolutely no exaggeration to say we've devoted our lives to this. Are you going to be around in 20 years doing this? Are you still going to be here and guiding people in this community? Those are questions I take seriously because if you are a seller & a practitioner then you have to have some sense of respect of that situation when you are guiding other people's journeys. Both Ash & myself take it seriously, many of the long-term members in this community take it seriously, and we all treat what we believe with a level of respect that we can all agree on things, and disagree on things, but at least we all feel that we are coming from the same general direction. The supernatural is the supernatural, sometimes there aren't explanations, but you having an experience versus someone building an entire belief system around it are different things. Maybe you will build a community around astral pregnancy, or the belief that spirits can be harmed by anyone at any time, or something like that, but that's not this community.
No one is ever going to agree 100%, but if you are going to say you are a Spirit Keeper and you believe in Spirit Keeping, then there has to be clear and defined guidelines that are widely accepted, otherwise it's a free-for-all. We've seen many free-for-alls over the years bubble up to the surface in the entire supernatural community, and they usually fall apart very quickly because once you get people on a frenzy thinking they are having spirits do things to them against their will, it unravels.
There are always going to be people who have experiences that fall outside the norm, that fall outside the average or standard experience, but I think it is very important, for Spirit Keeping purposes, that there are guidelines by which everyone generally agrees. Otherwise there is no standard by which Spirit Keeping is identified and anything & everything then falls under Spirit Keeping, which I don't think is fair. Most of us here don't want to be astrally pregnant or have astral babies, or want to forcibly conjure spirits or make a spirit our slave. Therefore, they wouldn't be something standard in the community.
For those who want to explore those things then I would suggest they have their own name for what they do and they create their own guidelines and standards to be clear on what anyone who embarks on that path can expect. Because I can assure you that the majority of people looking to be a Spirit Keeper aren't looking for those things.
I just want to say i have the utmost respect for you all but it is know that spirits can travel the astral and in astral you can get pregnant. Thus babies spirit is energy an astral pregnancy is energy.
And that would be your opinion, but that falls completely outside of Spirit Keeping and what Spirit Keeping is. I would recommend you outline your beliefs in astral pregnancy by spirits (and not entities) in your own site. I do fear, for your belief path, that you will run into people who then feel as though they've been violated, raped, forced into astral pregnancy, etc. And how do you reconcile for people who want to keep an Astral spirit but don't want to be pregnant? And which Astral spirits are impregnating people, and why? There must be a small percentage of these spirits that can do something like that because not even all species on planet Earth can impregnate each other, a very small percentage can cross-breed. What would an Astral spirit (a no longer living being) gain in having an Astral baby? And how does a spirit, who does not have procreating organs, impregnate someone in their Astral body & what exactly is impregnating the Astral body to result in the formation of a fetus and birth? I think there's a lot to be clearly outlined because even in the ancient texts of Immortal impregnating humans there are clear explanations of physical manifestation and the actual, physical human or actual, physical Immortal, becomes pregnant through fertilization through the ability to exchange physical fluids that bring about fertilization.
I really feel if this is something you sell & encourage with your own buying community, that you have very clear ideology and explanations, but that is NOT Spirit Keeping. Spirit Keeping is the practice of having spirit companions who are willingly and openly sharing their time with you for the betterment and enhancement of enlightenment, happiness, and connection with the mystical, magical, divine, and spiritual within you.
The belief that spirits (no longer living beings) can impregnate a human being and result in a live birth of a living being on another Realm from the human parent, is an entirely different ideology that doesn't have any foothold with the Spirit Keeping community. The same with spirits impregnating other spirits, not possible.
Most of what you stated i agree with but you also have some areas where you kind of contradictory statements. Forced bindings mean done by force... meaning harmful. Thus abusive it goes against free will. You can abuse an energy. Alot of this also goes off of peoples beliefs and personal experience. No one knows everything.
Again, I feel like you are coming from a different point of view of what Spirit Keeping is in the terms of what we all do here. Spirit bindings does not mean the spirit lives inside of a vessel and therefore cannot go anywhere else. It also doesn't mean that spirits can be abused without use of a force strong enough to be Black Arts. You are seriously under-crediting the power of spirits, and you are mocking their ability to defend themselves and the fact that they exist in a multi-plane/multi-realm existence. Unless you are forcing spirits into a binding (of any kind), through the use of Black Arts, you aren't going to rob them of free will to do anything. If you have a broad understanding of the various types of magic that predate the 20th century, and were widely used during the Spiritualism movement, and the usage of the pseudo-Christian and pseudo-Satanic movements which forcibly commanded the service of both "good" and "bad" spirits. However, once again, that is not Spirit Keeping, that is the practice of summoning and conjuring spirits which has zero to do with Spirit Keeping, and moreso to do with magic.
No one knows everything, but some of us have been doing this day-in and day-out for years and do nothing but this all day long. Therefore, some of us have a vast amount of experience in working with spirits and have seen more of what goes on that most of the people who have joined this community since it was founded. In regard to not knowing everything, in that same vein neither do you. Our experience and our knowledge has been documented for 17 years, publicly, and that does stand for something.
Varying opinions and varying beliefs is something that essential for the brilliance and beauty of the fabric of existence, but saying 17 years of experience is nothing compared to someone who's been around a year, or a few years, don't make a lot of sense. I was new to learning all this once, Ash was new to this once, and while you have experiences, you learn from them. Like anyone else who learns ANY trade, religion, etc in this world you learn from experiences and you often find you grow over time and you become smarter, wiser, and more aware of things; which can change your experiences & your understanding of your experiences. We are all still learning & still growing, but it doesn't mean either that foundational beliefs of a long-established community should change or uproot their foundational beliefs because someone has a different experience, or believes something outside of what the rest of us are doing & believe.
Spirits have emotions just because they passed on or are outside our frequencies does not mean anything.. also their form of death to us may not be the same to them. That is part of the glorious journey. But saying that they can not do something when you don't mention the astral and for many years our ancestors and various cultures teach us as above so below... what occurs here can occur in the astral.
Spirits do not have emotions like they did when they were living. They just don't. Humans are known to project emotion & emotional attachments to everything, which includes pets and even inanimate objects. Humans are emotional beings who process everything through emotion, therefore it's not unfounded to process a relationship with a spirit companion with emotion. However, the "emotions" of a spirit are not the same as human emotions and not the same as any emotions they processed while alive.
If you work with spirits all the time, and you have experience working with entities, then you must know the clear & defining difference that every single species has. EVERY SINGLE SPECIES. For a very clear example, the "emotions" your dog shows is nowhere near the breadth of emotions that you have. The emotions the crow that sits on your fence is not the same as your dog's breadth of emotions. Likewise, a Woodland Faery's emotions are not the same as a Leprechauns, or a Mermaid, or a Bronwyn Angel, or a Forest Troll. They are all different, they all have different spans of emotions, they all have different ways of processing information, and in spirit form it is completely different than in living form.
Any manner of death and dying from a physical, living being is going to convert any being into a spirit form, and by spirit form that does not mean the soul form which moves into the afterlife. We are talking about spirits, not souls, and not reincarnated beings, but spirits. That is what we all do, we keep spirits.
Not everyone is going to agree with everyone and just because you have expierence and 17 years only does not mean that someone else who has the same amount and has shops online for that same time with different expirences would agree.
There isn't anyone else who has that presence online. Period. I can name the other 10 sellers who were around prior to the big rush of sellers in 2006, and most of them are gone. The only original seller I know who was around when we started our site, and actually helped found the original CH forum, is DeeDee from Haunted Curiosities. Creepy Hollows not only created the vast majority of standards adopted by the Spirit Keeping community (there are sellers who even use our actual names like Reverse Adoption or Bridging Stone or SRA, etc), but we are the single-largest, and single-oldest Spirit Keeping reference. It's an accomplishment that involved not only Ash & myself but a lot of really tremendously wonderful people, many who are still in this community. I would never detract or take away from the years of time & devotion it took to build this community, because many people have contributed over the last 17 years and I'm proud of that and they are too.
Everyones experience is different.... i know crones who think you can abuse a spirit and people whose ancient practices even teach about some who did. It is a high honor and respect to be chosen to spirit keep regardless of how you feel on the topic. Sage can harm a dagerous unbound when cleansing as can bibles and other things... so if they can be harmed by a Binding or by something like that then they can be abused and injured. I do respect you but i wanted to put this out here because not everyone is going to agree with those when their beliefs and expirences teach otherwise. And as a shop it is important to respect all beings and customers. Also near vessels you stated you can not forcefully bind spirits and above you stated you could. It kind confuses newbies. Please dont think i am trying to be mean. I am just saying we dont know everything we go off of experience.
You are confusing spirits conjured for magic and Spirit Keeping. Again, two completely different things. You can read ancient texts, even all the way up into the Victorian era, that speak of forcibly conjuring spirits to perform magic and to perform tasks. Spirits forced into service by practitioners for tasks, etc. Again though, THIS IS NOT SPIRIT KEEPING.
As to forcible binding, this has been explained in multiple posts. Forcible binding through the use of Black Arts is NOT Spirit Keeping, that is service. Can spirits be forcibly conjured and forcibly bound? Yes. Is that Spirit Keeping? No. That would be forcibly making a spirit do something on your behalf. Practitioners from multiple paths of magic have documented cases through centuries of forcibly conjuring and making spirits do their bidding.
As a shop it is important to understand the difference between Spirit Keeping and ancient practices or Black Arts practices of spirit service & forcible bindings. Because the two should not be confused, because they are NOT the same thing.
Everyone is welcome to their opinions and to what they want to think, but when it comes to Spirit Keeping, actual Spirit Keeping - not whatever people are calling "Spirit Keeping" but really isn't, I'm not going to denounce all the hard work myself, Ash, and every member of this community has contributed. Our (meaning everyone who has been in the Spirit Keeping community since it began) experiences are well-documented and supported by thousands of members worldwide, and their experiences cannot be discredited. It's a situation where you have to agree to disagree, and appreciate each other for our differences.
I think discussion and respect of each other's beliefs is essential, but I think if the Spirit Keeping community has any chance of longevity, and any chance of being taken seriously
, there has to be clear guidelines of what Spirit Keeping is, and a general consensus of what Spirit Keeping means and entails. Without a consolidated and complete foundation then there is nothing specific to believe in & nothing to stand on.
Even religions that have varying ideologies have a core belief system that makes them what they are, and then the varying ideologies have their own names & additional sets of beliefs. And if that's something that astral pregnant believers want to have then I would still say it needs to have its own name, its own clearly identifying beliefs & explanations. You could then say you are a Spirit Keeper & an Astral surrogate or something, but it isn't part of what Spirit Keeping is. The majority of us are NOT keeping companionship with spirits to be astrally pregnant, and therefore it isn't part of the foundation of what Spirit Keeping is.