When working with the divine and the spirits of the world, it becomes necessary for your well being and the well being of your relationships to have firm boundaries established. These prevent misunderstandings and abuses of power, accidental or intentional. It’s important for you to set, communicate, and maintain these boundaries within your practice (and within your mundane life as well, although those will be different).
Keep in mind, establishing boundaries is a two-way street, and the entity you work with may also have their own set of boundaries. Neither of you will appreciate boundaries being crossed, so do your best to stick to them. It is entirely within your right and the right of the entity to cease the relationship or conversation and cast them from your space if they violate your boundaries. These rules exist for a reason.
1. Specify what deities and entities are allowed to come and go.
- Are they allowed to just enter on their own?
- Do they need your permission?
- Do they need your deity’s permission?
- Who is NOT ALLOWED IN UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES?
Ex: My main deity is the gatekeeper of my home. He decides who is allowed to enter, except for when I am sleeping or have specifically requested time alone – in which case NO ONE is allowed in unless it’s an emergency (as defined by me). There are two deities I have had very bad, boundary violating and emotionally hurtful experiences who are not allowed into my space under any circumstances.
2. How would you like yourself, your family, and your space to be treated?
- Is it ok if they mess with your things?
- Specify exactly what is acceptable and what isn’t.
Ex: My boundaries state that no mental, emotional, or physical harm is allowed to come to myself or my children. I would prefer my things to not be taken or moved, but as I work with tricksters I know that isn’t always going to be possible- it’s their nature. Instead I ask that things be returned promptly when I need them or ask for them back.
3. How are they allowed to communicate with you?
- Can they use a pendulum? Tarot?
- Can they use shufflemancy to mess with your music playlists?
- Is it ok to mess with your phone, but not your TV?
- What clairsenses are you able to use to communicate?
Ex: I am open to communication via pendulum, tarot, and my clairaudience. I would like only the beings I work with personally to use my clairtangency to communicate. Occasionally, with my prior permission, I’ll allow them to tamper with my phone for shufflemancy.
4. Can they take you to the astral?
- When do they have permission?
- Do they need to ask every time?
- When is being taken to the astral unacceptable?
- When is it more acceptable?
Ex: I go to the astral in my sleep naturally. However, there are some people who are able to go to the astral at will- and for these people any given moment can be utilized to project. For myself, I have small children. It would be very dangerous for me to be pulled astral at any random moment, just like it would be dangerous if you were cooking or driving or soaking in the tub.
5. When is channeling ok?
- Do they need your permission or do they need yours and your deity’s?
Ex: Not everyone is able to channel entities, and it can be disconcerting to be channeled without warning, especially if it’s never happened before (speaking from experience). Your new deity wants to try a bite of the chocolate cake you bought today- if you can channel, are you alright with them hopping in and taking a few bites for themselves? Is it okay if they do that in front of your family, or only when you’re by yourself? Who told them they could do so?
6. Where are they allowed in your space?
- What areas of your home are open to them?
- What areas do they need permission to enter?
- What places are off limits?
Ex: My home is free reign for the entities I work with, with the exception of my children’s bedrooms and the bathrooms when the room is occupied. It might be whatever for a deity to see a human naked – nudity wasn’t such a big deal back in their heyday, after all – but it can feel violating for an entity you just started working with last week to walk in and start talking to you while you’re in the shower.
7. When are they allowed to be present?
- Why are they here?
- Do you only want entities there when it’s directly related to your work with them, or are they free to come and go as they please and hang around when they like?
Ex: If you work with Loki, is he allowed to bring his (usually extremely chaotic) energy into your space when you’re trying to sit back and relax after a long day? Can Hephaestus be around when you aren’t working with him or crafting? Does Hypnos have a free pass to be in your space when you’re sleeping?
8. Do you want the sole ability to tell them to leave, or do you want the deity you work with to reserve the ability to make them leave? Both?
Ex: This should be self explanatory. You have the right to dictate who is in your space and when. If someone violates that, they need to leave. Do you want to be the only one who does that, or would you like to delegate some of that responsibility to another entity who could be there, see the transgression or your discomfort, and have them leave?
Working with entities can be a fulfilling and wonderful experience for both sides of the partnership, as long as both sides feel heard and respected. Boundaries can help to ensure that all the proper precautions are set in place for the working relationship to flourish.