Thank you so very much for the mega informative post!Charles_Odinforce wrote: ↑Thu Aug 18, 2022 10:34 pmSo a couple thoughts on this.
First this reminds me of when people ask “Which God or Goddess is best for X” and it doesn't get into the nature of association and the impact that has with the higher power. Spirit Keeping in a real sense is an offshoot of Shamanism, working with spirits by forming a bond with them, and as such shares a lot of parallels with other systems of mysticism. In all of these systems the answer is always “the one you have the most connection to is always the strongest.”
Second, know your situation and enemies. If you find you are having problems with a spirit of X element, find its counter element.
Third, remember its rare for spirits/unbounds to just target someone. The vast bulk of “negative spiritual altercations” are either a human overstepping their bounds in terms of territory (angered land spirits) where some offerings can help to find peace OR some other kind of awakening like a shadow self awakening, kundalini awakening, or other such thing. Think of it like this, if you went from barely being able to hear sound, to now hearing things as clear as if they were 100 decibels above normal, even a friendly “hello” from a spirit would feel like a cannon ball hitting you in the head. Sometimes that doesn't manifest “in the head” instead it manifests in more personal areas, but that is very often just that being the chakra that has the issue processing the energies and information. This doesn't mean negative entities don't harass people, but for the big, overly manifesting situations there is often some kind of sensitivity OR reason.
Fourth, ultimately in situations where you need protective spirits you also need to spend time working with spirits to help them bridge the gap. We tend to think of the other realms as one big giant “Astral World” but every culture has different realms, and most realms seem to overlap on this one. By helping a spirit anchor to this realm, through offerings and working with them in ritual, we amplify their ability to protect us from things that are overlapping this realm also.
Fifth on this, even among well known “best for defense” spirits there are going to be stronger and weaker ones, more war focused and less focused ones. As an example, you likely won't find a cowardly Valkyrie, or one who can't fight unless you are specifically seeking one out who has that complex. By and large spirits known for fighting are going to be good at it.
All of that said, personal go to favorites for me? Dragons, Dwarves, Elves, Elementals, Valkyries, Draugr, Jotunn, and the like. It depends though on what I'm dealing with. If a foe is particularly attuned to dark energies then Angels and Celestial beings jump to the top. If they are a being of light, then Shadow People, Demons, or even something like a Void Elemental specifically start to come to mind. When you use the contrasting force, there are pros and cons to that which are obvious, but having the bigger stick AND the foe being weak to that stick really does negate the downsides to also being weaker to your foe.
If I was giving advice though to a new person without any background on what they know, I'd start with Elementals, Land Spirits, or Nature based spirits like Animal Guides or Guardians. Such beings are somewhat neutral outside of one key point, they are often above average in loyalty and have almost no concept of backing down when challenged. Likewise whatever imbalances are influencing the area around you, Nature spirits will be more than willing to pick a fight on your behalf.
Lastly, in those situations where your foe is another practitioner, my advice is to also have some totems/representations for your spirits. Old school shamanism and most forms of occultism agree that having a fine vessel specifically dedicated to a spirit makes it stronger. Likewise vessels in some situations can be combined with other power boosters (talismans and such) just like a person would use, allowing you to easily amplify a spirits existing power. Vessels make it easier, to do offerings. If it's another person, these things are enough to start to balance some of the gap between a novice and someone with experience. If it's an expert, start learning some ritual magick of your own to add to the mix to keep up.
No one likes to hit a target that hits them back. Don't be a living punching dummy in any fight.
You really touched on everything and put a lot of things in perspective, and thank you for going in-depth on the different types of protectors and how they can help. This is really useful info. I was also considering vampire as a possible helper and protector, and wonder what you think of them?
And I'm wondering if you know any good ways to cleanse jewelry of any possible negative energies? Normally I just let them rest in water and that does it, but what if it needs something stronger? In your experience, what works then?