Failure to Bind

More than a year ago I wrote a somewhat theoretical post about applied feminist ethics in witchcraft.  It was, of course, not all that theoretical.  Someone that I had, until that point, considered a friend had stalked anohter friend of mine home from a party and violated zir personal space in a few ways.  The creeped-on friend, however, did not want a scene made, which prevented me from summarily barring the creeper from my social circle.  What I could and did do, however, was attempt to bind the creeper from further infringing on my friend’s boundaries.

I drew a sigil, called upon my familiar spirits and the spirits of Saturn and Venus, and arranged for the person in question to drink a series of toasts that had been poured over the sigil.  A couple other people from the social circle were there as well, which was not strictly ethical, but seemed … necessary and appropriate, and it was what my Genius and Daemon had led me to do.

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My binding worked, in one sense.  To the best of my knowledge, the creeper in question never infringed upon my friend again.  In another sense, it failed utterly.  Zie went on, instead, to assault someone else.  In full view of one of the others who had been present at the binding toast, actually, which is … interesting.

Divination indicated that I should not, at that point, escalate: that all would be taken care of behind the curtain.  And by divination, I mean my tarot cards and the VERY LOUD YELLING of the very many spirits who at that point were hanging about my temple.

Doubt lingers, of course, to this very day.  What could and should I have done differently?  I was constrained in mundane action in both the initial instance and the subsequent by the wishes of the victims.  How could I stand by and NOT smite zir into the dark depths of the earth–except that it was made very clear to me that further attempts at intervention would only go awry?

I’m not even certain why I’m telling this story except, in a new life in a new Temple, it’s past time to burn the original sigil, but I wanted archival evidence of the results.And in the hopes that someone reading this has productive thoughts on how such a situation could be handled better in the future.  Because neo-Pagan sexual mores often make a highly effective smokescreen for mainstream rape culture, and there will be a next time.

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1 Comment

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One response to “Failure to Bind

  1. But you are correct: the binding was effective. Your goal was to prevent Creeper from repeating infringement upon Friend. The concern here was scope – Creeper was not bound from infringing upon anyone else.

    You addressed the symptom, not the cause.

    The problem here is how to address that symptom. Bind Creeper from infringing on anyone else? Inspire an illuminatory experience for Creeper to see how damaging zir behavior is? Cause Creeper to face Harsh and Negative Consequences from Zir action? A glamor making Creeper’s creepiness so overwhelming that all people naturally stay away?

    All of those have varying degrees of viability, but if divination and spirit counsel says leave it alone, that is probably best. It may be you risk further entangling yourself in the situation magically, and might start sharing some manner of karmic responsibility for further acts.

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