I happened across this little gem called The Three Kings Ritual amongst my Twitter feeds the other day. I am beginning to think that I am going to have to write a book about safe spirit contact for those interested in the paranormal since people keep putting this tripe online (no offense intended to the Week in Weird folks – the original version of this ritual came from a Reddit feed).
Anyone who has followed the blog for a while will know that I am all for spirit work. I work with spirits in my practices all the time and I feel that those spirits have blessed me with love, support, protection and guidance over the years. I do dream work with the spirits that I know and commune with them regularly in my meditations and by making offerings and prayers to them on specific days. I have built a relationship with them and, if I need something I ask. Conversely, if the spirits in question want something from me, they are not shy about letting me know. I try to accommodate them and, if I can not, I explain why and try to work out an equitable solution.
Does this sound familiar? It should since my relationship with my spiritual ‘family’ is similar to the relationship that I have with friends and relations in our consensual reality. I do not walk out into the middle of my neighborhood, approach people I do not know and ask them if they want to come over to my house for a chat. Anyone proposing that you do that sort of thing would likely be met with a jaundiced eye by most people but the Internet seems determined to get people to do just that with the spirit world. If I were of a more conspiratorial bent, I might think that there was a group of disharmonic entities working through people to put these ‘games’ online.
I am not going to waste a lot of words taking this ritual apart piece by piece. Suffice to say that the ‘game’ is designed to place people in a semi-fearful state of mind or, for the more skeptical, at least create a sense of anticipation by using not so subtle cues like the performance of the ritual in the so-called dead time made famous on certain paranormal shows. In addition, the constant harping on back ups (such as the candle, the water bucket and the toy to make certain that the person comes back from their trance) also creates the anticipatory feel that something is going to happen. Add to that the effect of sitting quietly, in a dark room with two mirrors and nothing but the light of a flickering candle and all but the most concrete-headed will fall into some level of trance. Basically, this is a set up for mirror scrying – clairvoyance using a mirror as a focus, a technique well known in ceremonial circles as a part of spirit evocation (calling a spirit into various levels of manifestation). For more on the use of mirrors in magic, see my blog titled Mirror, Mirror.
The old adage in magical circles applies here: never summon what you can not send back. The fact of the matter is that this ritual is dangerous simply because you have no idea what you are summoning, you have no protections in place in case something nasty comes through (yes, Virginia, there are spirits who do not like humans at all and other spirits who feed on the type of fear that this sort of incautious work engenders) and there is no easy way to send back whatever decides to show up since the worker has not taken any steps to contain any spirit that manifests. As with the use of a spirit board, there is a correct way to use use such a tool in invocation/evocation work and there is an incorrect way. This ritual does not even approach being the correct way to make contact since it follows the open door system of spirit contact – i.e. there is no specific entity being sought, rather, the door is being opened for any being to come through.
Given the references to the “Shadowside”, the creepiness of doing this during dead time, the repeated references to back ups designed to bring the operator out of trance and so on, the subconscious coding for this ritual is one of the anticipation of something scary manifesting. Add to this the testimony of others on the site that something creepy did indeed occur and this ‘program’ is even more deeply set. If your subconscious mind already has the ritual coded as a scary event, then guess what you are most likely to attract?