Do we prevent somebody being hurt by superstition or faith by rejecting and challenging those things? 

Is it mistaken to support organised religion in membership or donations?

If people do good because they are human, not because God prompts them then is it right to risk giving God any credit when they alone own their good?

 


Demonic Possession

One of the things most religions, cults, occult groups and pseudo-religions have in common is an acceptance of the possibility of diabolical possession, that is, that evil spirits or demons have the power to control the bodies of their victims. A spirit is a being without a body which is why it can infest you.  Taking over the body would not necessarily mean taking over the person.  A demon may control your arm so that you cannot do anything about it when it takes a knife and stabs people.  Believers in possession never consider that possibility which shows their belief is inconsistent.  They have chosen to ignore those who say they are possessed and who might be possessed who claim that their arms were forced.  This is totally anti-truth and anti-evidence and anti-honesty.  Religion ignores claims and miracles that do not fit its worldview so for the reason that the best thing you can do for Satan is to deny that he is at work or exists religion is abetting demons.  Exorcism is relocating a demon not dealing with it.

A question.  Why are things never possessed? What about the Annabelle dolls of this world?   It should be as easy for a demon to control a knife as a body. No it should be easier.  Demons should be able to control things easier than people for things don't resist or try to.  A demon if it can get into a person should be able to get into a knife and stick it in everybody in reach. 

And if a demon wants to possess a person's life not just their body - what use is that really? - they should be able to possess the person and the things that person treasures.  They should be able to use them?  If things are not possessed in any sense then that would be a sign that possession is a dubious concept.  If something is at work then it is not demons at all. They even push the inhabitant of the body to the one side and that takes a lot of magic to do such a thing. The reason people get possessed not things is that they are not possessed and have something wrong with their heads.

THE MEDICS

Psychiatrists do not see any validity in diagnoses of possession by spirits.  They do not say anybody has a demon nor do they agree with letting religion say it.  They do not even treat the alleged entities as artificial personalities for they are sure the person is not really taken over by anything.  They are well accustomed, as is religion, to many mentally ill people thinking or acting as if they are suffering possession.  The American Psychiatric Association (APA) in its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) provides the accepted list of mental illnesses and disorders.  What it calls dissociative trance disorder or DTD is what people may mistake for a possession.  Here the person is entranced and someone other than them seems to be coming through.  Many possessions do not report trance.  Religion then will be unhappy that the APA won't admit possession exists and claims that no religious person should consider a person who is not in a trance to be possessed.   It claims it has a diagnosis to cover alleged possession which surely will demand that only science and medicine should handle the problem.

WHAT IF THE SPIRIT SHOWS NO OR LITTLE MALICE?

Not all possessions seem to be worth worrying about.  Voodoo and religions like that consider possession by spirits claiming to be gods or ancestors is a good thing and followers use drums and prayers and rites to get possessed so that they can give hidden information and heal people. About five million people in the United States alone attempt to induce possession or to open up to it.   The majority of possessions then are not really demonic horror film stuff.  For Christianity, the "nice" possessions are the worst of all.  But only few if any think the nice ones are bad.  And if there is self-deception involved it is harmful to a person who likes getting possessed that it is a malicious spirit that is doing it for it programmes their brain to simulate possession by evil.

Possession based religion or shamanic religion holds that evil spirits can possess and practitioners claim to have the power to evict them.  The Catholic claim is that this is Satan's work.  But if it is, then it shows that Jesus' claim that Satan cannot cast out Satan is gibberish.  The Church has no evidence that if it casts out demons that it really is casting them out and not making them hide better or that the demon is not cast out but only leaving for a better offer has come up.  Without the evidence, the doctrine of possession simply leads to the spiritually abusive superstition of exorcism.

The Bible says that false Gods are really demons in disguise which is why there is a need for brutal opposition to idolatry.  And if you consider the Mass to be idolatry with its allegation that the bread becomes Jesus and you have to assimilate him to sort of become him that is a cry for possession.

CLEVER DEMONS?

It has been noticed that those who say people can be possessed have a shocking and remarkable high view of demonic power and cleverness.

Christians say that the demons are fallen angels and angels have incredible intelligence. 

The smartness and craftiness of demons produces great fear in religious and superstitious communities.

If you think God lives in the Christian and the Christian can still gets possessed then the demon must be very intelligent indeed.  It may explain why demons are so hard to eject by exorcism.  It usually takes years. 

LEARNING FROM THE DEMONS

As it is so easy to mistake a trick or mental illness for a demonic action, the exorcist has to ask the demon questions to be sure that it really is another person inside the possessed person.

As part of the diagnosis, the exorcist has to determine if a demon is behind it by getting to to tell things the victim or even himself cannot know.

This totally contradicts the Bible God who forbids asking questions of spirits.  It is a form of divination.

CAN A CHRISTIAN SAVED BY GOD BE POSSESSED?

Jesus seems to have said that his follower who he calls the strong man can handle Satan and tie him up (Matthew 12: 29). That could be taken as saying that the Christian cannot be possessed or demonised or worse that they won’t exorcise themselves and want Satan in. Jesus one time when he was accused of being possessed said he was not for he honoured God his father (John 8: 49). Thus he is clear that no possessed person truly honours God. Maybe they can do the motions but it is their own fault. This vision explains why there are no exorcisms in John’s gospel. Jesus is not going to come and put a demon out when you are the one keeping it in! The Catholic Church assumes possession victims are Christians. No wonder it is so hard and takes maybe years to get the demon out and if it goes it looks like it just never intended to stay in the person forever anyway. The Church is responsible for the possession by falsely assuring the victim that she or he is Christian. The exorcism amounts to superstition and abuse. The exorcism honours Satan by saying that he can get into a person who is a child of God as if he is stronger than God or a worthy opponent.

DEMONS STUPID?

Some argue that demons are remarkably stupid!  This is really an excuse for diagnosing possession more easily.  If the person is faking and making mistakes you can blame the demon's lack of intelligence.

Others reason that the demon is clever but plays stupid.

The demon provoking the exorcism and the exorcist is put down to stupidity.  Nobody worries that it may show the demon knows exactly what it is doing and has no fear of the ritual.

Christians habitually treat a demon as if it were Satan himself when there is no reason to think it necessarily has to be him.  The doctrine is that he is the top demon and a former top archangel.  He does not sound like a fool.  The Bible warns of the clever snares he sets.

How could an evil spirit really be unintelligent when it is like a mind or brain that is not limited by material components?  The way the brain is physically made can lead to problems but a spirit is not a brain and has none so it cannot be stupid.

The view that demons are dumb comes from how stupid they come across even in exorcisms. The argument is that this is an act intended to excite pride in the victim or exorcist as if they will feel they are smarter. That is a rationalisation. No demon is going to aim for something so indirect and unpredictable. It should want to scare the exorcist by showing its genius. The demon acts stupid because it is not a demon at all but the person or part of the person. Mental illness tends to talk dumb.

THERE IS MORE

Sledgehammer Christianity says that if somebody is not Christian then do not get the demon out for it will return and find the house empty of God and faith and will re-possess and even bring along its even more evil friends (Matthew 12:45). So non-Christians are accused of providing houses for the demons!  And if a demon is invited, its mates must be gatecrashers.  This brings us to the question: is the possessed person in any way to blame for the possession or fully to blame?

In the gospels Jesus never speaks to the possessed person in such a way as to find out how and why they invited demons in and never tells them what to do to keep them away. He just speaks to the demon as if the demon took the person over against their will. It is just ordered out without any attempt to counsel the victim.  The doctrine of possession is terrible when it blames the victim and terrible when it does not. Demons just sitting around and pouncing on people is a terrifying thought.  It is pure pagan superstition.

Even worse Jesus speaks to the demon in the body as if it is the person who owns the body.  The person responds as if they are the demon incarnate.  Is this the idea that the demon shoves the real owner out and replaces her or him?  Yes.  To murder the person who is exhibiting the demon is really to murder the demon not the person.  It is true that we have a story in the gospels about Jesus meeting a man with a legion of demons.  In Mark 5  we have "He shouted at the top of his voice, “What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? In God’s name don’t torture me!”   For Jesus had said to him, “Come out of this man, you impure spirit!”

Notice how it says he when it is the demon talking.   When Jesus says come out of the man he really seems to mean just for the demon to come out of the body and let the man back in.  This early exorcism tale shows us how to interpret the possession stories about Jesus.

Why is nobody possessed forever or permanently?  Victims have peace most of the time. Why are only Catholics possessed?  Is exorcism a scam and do demons prefer to lurk within without fanfare?

EXPERIMENT

Jesus told demons to go and the person recovered there and then. Nobody ever reports such success today. Paul according to the Acts of the Apostles was annoyed by a girl with a demon following him around and he lost his temper and told it to get out in the name of Jesus and it did there and then.

All admit that it is hard to tell if somebody really is possessed. All the exorcist does in such a case is attempt to use the name of Jesus to get the demon out and if it works the person was possessed. This seems outrageously cruel. It is trying to test the alleged cure to see what the diagnosis should be. You don't stoop so low that you amputate a limb in case somebody has gangrene.

Surely if you expect an instant departure in the name of Jesus and it does not happen you should surmise that the person is not possessed and stop trying to treat her with more exorcisms?

The Bible says demons are very strong for the Gadarene demonic was able to break his chains and presumably injure himself thereby. Possession then means that attempting exorcism many only fuel the anger of the demon towards the victim.

Evidence of Satan in the Modern World, Chapter 5 Cases of Possession in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries speaks of persons who got exorcised and then needed at least one more exorcism. What about "the case of a young Bantu girl, Claire-Germaine Cele, of Natal, who was twice possessed and twice delivered by exorcism, once on 10th September 1906, and again on 24th April 1907." Such ideas imply that exorcists do not admit that they failed to get the demon out and that it was dormant. If the person relapses they treat it like the flu and start another course of exorcism.
 
There can be no doubt that Jesus Christ’s exorcisms and example has cost many their lives and caused a lot of suffering especially in centuries gone by. The exorcists say that the demon often gets very violent and abusive towards the victim during an exorcism. The demon reacts angrily towards the exorcism and it supposedly tortures the victim with new ferocity in the hope that the priest will discontinue the exorcism. And it takes many exorcisms to get each one out so the victim could be a bloody mass of pulp before it supposedly succeeds. This is nothing more than religion declaring that it has the right to torment people when it cannot prove that demons exist or possess people if they do. Also, people used to be forced to fast and were beaten up to get the demons out and locked up in towers with monks praying over them for weeks. There can be little doubt that Satan might have performed exorcisms through Jesus so that this would happen. If he cast demons out it was worth it to him for it resulted in superstition and worse evil than possessing.

If the demon is part of the person it is the person who is being tormented by the exorcist.

HOW SEPARATE? 

Some religions say the demons actually take over human beings.  The Catholic view is that there is at least one other person infesting the body that belongs to somebody else and that person has to be removed and kept out. But the owner of the body is still in there.

It is a mystery how something that has no components or parts or nerves can feel hate and greed.  Demons and evil spirits need bodies to feel hate and feel greed and all those other bad things.  That surely means they become Anton when they possess his body. 

FEAR

Why do the demons possessing people seem to want the victim and the witnesses and the exorcist to be ridden with fear?  Exorcists write accounts and talk and spread the fear.  What is going on?  The answer is it is not the demons doing the fear-mongering.  Jesus kept saying the world was in the grip of Satan and regarded the frequent possessions he came across as evidence.  It is about getting control.

FINALLY

We see that possession is a dangerous idea.  It risks dehumanising a sick person. Unless your mental disorder is seen as something affecting you and is not a ghost that has come from the spirit world you are being demeaned.  You cannot start saying there is only one model of possessions so that you can regard someone tormented by an alleged demon as possessed and then say that somebody with a nice demon is not possessed.