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Encounters with Middle World Spirits: The Question of 'Slime'

OMG... Have I Been 'Slimed?:
Encounters with Middle World Spirits



Among shamanic practitioners, the expression 'slimed' has developed into a kind of informal term to signify a close and questionable brush with a toxic middle-world spirit. It relays in a truly descriptive manner, the 'sticky and unwholesome quality of such middle-world encounters. If there remains some attachment by a middle world spirit, the natural concern is whether one's life-force is being drained.

This is part of a letter I received from a new shamanic practitioner. As she will recount for herself, she once encountered a spirit who had cast a dark shadow in her life and she was justifiably spooked. More than this, she was unnerved enough so that she waited more than a decade before challenging herself and studying shamanism. Sadly, her experience is not at all unusual.

In only the most recent period of human history, we have culturally disavowed and hence have forgotten the old ways. Unfortunately, the outcome is that we forgot how to deal with matters such as hers.

It is our sincere hope that more people regain this knowledge and can help us again learn the realistic ways of managing these things. There is no reason for fear, only awareness and realistic concerns when it comes to 'spooks'. Once we learn what powers they have, what powers they do not have, all such things become quite tidy and uneventful, especially when we realize what powers we already, do have!

I have tremendous gratitude for this writer's access to her innermost thoughts and concerns for they speak deeply to many of us who have, or will face, something similar.

She writes:

"... It happened a while ago, over 12 years. I was fairly new to meditation, but i had a pretty good handle on it. I was meditating to meet my Spirit Guide. I came across a beautiful meadow, with a river. There was someone there, waiting for me with a canoe type boat (like you see in Italy). I couldn’t see the person 'waiting', but I was under the impression that he was going to take me to my guide. He helped me into the boat. The river was beautiful. We went down the river a bit.  It was starting to get dark when we went over to the bank of the river to get out. He helped me out of the boat to a place that at first didn’t look unusual. But as soon as both of my feet were out of the boat, it changed. It was very dark; the trees were bare and dead looking. The person who brought me was a little ahead of me, waving me to follow. I became very uneasy and abruptly ended the meditation.

Afterwards, and for a few days, I was in constant fear. I had the constant feeling that I was in serious trouble. That something evil was with me. It took me weeks of diligent meditation to clear my energy and get whatever it was to go away. I never tried that again. I’m afraid that whatever that was, is still there, waiting to find a way in again. 

How the heck did I get there? Was I supposed to be able to get there?  I had only been meditating for less than a year. 

Can I assume that the thing that followed me out (or did I just get slimed)… isn’t it still around? 

I think that if i get the protocols for safety down, that I will be ok. It might take me a little longer and a little more effort to work through it."


It sounds like this practitioner was journeying through what in shamanic terms, we call the non-ordinary middle world. This is a realm where a great deal of ignorance exists, and because of the dangers inherent there, I do not at all advise working there until one is sufficiently empowered and trained. 

To begin, it is apparent this practitioner doesn't seem to be on a path to a specific compassionate realm, and they seem to be guided by a being about which they have no idea who or what it is.

Usually following such a situation, no worries; just a brush with a middle world spirit. Of course, such an encounter would be unnerving, but the spirit can with limited time and interaction, do little aside from trying to intimidate, which, however, they are quite good at. This practitioner’s efforts to make certain there was a firm boundary between them and the spirit was intuitively right on track. Their decision to abruptly end the interaction was perfect.

Although it was unnerving, it appears to have left them with nothing more than an instructive experience. Unnerving, but instructive!

What I can see, given everything recounted, is that this was simply a consequence of not knowing the steps of journeying. Such an experience could happen to anyone under these circumstances.

Let’s look at the possibilities. This practitioner may have been given a significant challenge by what are called ancestor spirits, who remain in the middle world even though they could transcend, but choose not to because they desire even more than this, to remain close to those who might help their particular interests. It is not unusual that tests are given to potential candidates for working with them. Ancestor spirits can be quite fearsome, since they want to find out what this new person is made of and if they are able to step forward with courage, etc., and are not dismayed by their appearance.

An alternative is that this was an ordinary middle world spirit who just wanted to tap into some life force since they cannot subsist in the non-ordinary middle world on their own, not having any!

There is no way in retrospect to determine what exactly was the nature of why this person experienced what they did until they begin to gather their own spirit helpers in animal form and spirit teachers so that they can ask them about it. In all cases, the only way any ’tapping into one’s life force’ could even start was if one unknowingly, actually helped the spirit establish some kind of connection. Such spirits cannot establish such a connection entirely on their own, which is one of the reasons why they come on in an intimidating manner. Fear can establish such a connection.

In the first scenario, if it was an ancestor spirit, they would not have any desire to be a drain, for they would want the practitioner to be as strong a possible so they could do good shamanic work. Family lines and cultures with certain ancestor spirits negotiate a fair exchange through the widespread devotion by their 'clan', which undoubtedly helps such spirits continue to exist without any essence of their own. This way, no one is unfairly singled out so that they are harmed. It is an even trade-off, since the ancestor spirit does much to help and protect the lineage.

I have met and interacted with such spirits, as have many other practitioners, but unless one has a specific cultural preparation and certain ancestor spirits of a particular community for whom such connections are very much alive and understood, it is generally advised to avoid such spirits until the practitioner is confident and educated about working with them.

Now, considering all other middle world spirits, there is no way that any other middle world spirit could continue to tap into a person’s essence unless that person was vulnerable to this and had established an energetic relationship with the spirit. This person’s response to this spirit was entirely correct, which was to cut all thoughts and relationship with them. The other advisement, however, would be the necessity of developing one’s own power, which can do such things as increase even further the strength of one’s boundaries.

Working through shamanic training involves first developing this power and these boundaries, along with learning safe protocols. Aside from journeying through the middle world on the way to the compassionate realms, newer practitioners should not interact with middle world spirits at all. This is a hard recommendation for some people to follow when there is an attraction, even if it is an attraction catalyzed by fear, and not just ignore and pass by what may be encountered. 

Thousands and thousands of practitioners have been trained to journey without mishap because they develop their power, learn where to put their attention, know where to go, and know what to do... and not do.

The strategy for dealing with a case like this is simple. One must sever any connections with such a spirit, especially following such responses as fear, and one must develop their own power.

It is not so widely recognized that in connections between the fearful-appearing spirits and ourselves, that the maintenance of such a connection is always a 'two-way street'. Many, through maintaining fear, actually keep alive the very connection they wish to cut.

One who chooses to study shamanism must have very good boundaries. A good test of this is whether in one's daily, ordinary life, one also finds boundaries hard to maintain. People without good boundaries often feel nagged by what other people think about them. People with poor boundaries also allow others who trespass on their boundaries to continue to do so.

Protocols of safety should be firmly taught and deeply engrained in anyone moving through non-ordinary reality. The largest part of the writer's situation was simply that they didn’t have this kind of information available at the time. If they pursue shamanic practices, they will be dealing with many, many spirits, power animals, souls and soul parts over the course of their career. All of this becomes very 'matter-of-fact' after a while. The protocols, if followed, are truly sufficient to keep a practitioner out of harm's way. All practitioners should have their own spirit helpers to empower, protect and guide them, as well as becoming empowered and knowledgeable themselves. A little education and bit of empowerment goes a long way!

I am sorry for this practitioner’s experience, but they were actually fortunate, as many who start working with these things with nothing more than a courageous spirit have found themselves in a lot more trouble. This person, on the other hand, had excellent boundaries and extricated from it rather adroitly!