The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Demons - real or not?


#41

Notice the deafening silence of berserk when I ask him twice for the academic paper for atheism written by his latest witness of ghosts/demons/Satan/bokoblins.


#42

If these evil spirits are able to throw physical objects around, why would they need you or anyone else for that matter to carry out their evil deeds?


#43

Well as a 1st century Jew of course Jesus did as apart from the likes of the Sadducees that was the common prevailing thought and assumption of the day to explain certain phenomena etc.

No it’s not… it is simply to have an understanding of what that meant in the context of the naively simplistic narrative of 1st century Palestine… separating the two is something uncritical thinking evangelicals can’t seem to do.

Again to pick up on the though Bob raised earlier… IF some can be possessed of devils THEN some can be possessed of angels — really? It was a cultural thing!


#44

Psychiatrist Scott Peck wrote 2 books that deal with possession and exorcism. As he became more exposed to evil parents who were destroying their children’s psyche. He became curious and asked to see an exorcism. As he puts it, “the first two were misdiagnosed psychiatric disorders.and I was already putting notches on my scientific pistol.” The 3rd possession case was the real thing–and his exposure to it changed his life and attitude forever.


#45

I’m undecided at this point; I tend to agree with what you and Bob said, but I do have these nagging thoughts.

Agreed, mostly. But - just because it was a first century Jewish idea does NOT mean that it was necessarily wrong. They might have been onto something we have lost. That is a possibility, I think.

I’m not sure that the angel thing follows from the demon thing. Angels, the ‘good’ ones, having the character God gave them, would not be interested in possessing and overriding a human being.
Demons conceivably do so.
Also, Paul taught that one of the gifts of the Spirit is the discernment of spirits.

So I can’t write off the explanation given by Jesus for his works in this regard.


#46

I’m not saying they were necessarily wrong because in their context (understanding) they were absolutely right, though of course the Sadducees disputed this… I’m suggesting their simplistic belief was to be expected BUT THAT doesn’t mean reality was actually according to that belief.

Well speaking of things lost… did you never wonder in the story of the demonised herd of hogs WHAT ON EARTH were JEWS doing herding and keeping PIGS… something literally does NOT add up?? And what is it about pigs that with regards to humans devils can come and go at leisure (Mt 12:43-45) but a riding a hog is a one way no return trip (Mt 8:30-3)? Nah

So if God gave angels their character and God gives man his character then from whence comes the character for so-called fallen angels? Who or what has this other apparent creative force enabling then to possess — too many speculative rumblings come from this mindset IMO.

Yes he did… BUT did that mean determining devil A from devil B, or could it be something along the lines of Rom 16:17-18; 1Jn 4:2-3 etc?


#47

Well I actually meant - reality could be that they were right. We also have a culture, that does not believe, overall, in demons. How do we know we are right? We are as culture bound as any society. Just sayin’ - they may have been right in reality.

It’s my understanding that the herders were actually Gerasenes who were not Israelites; they were Gentiles and had no prohibitions against swine.
I could be wrong about that I suppose, do you have evidence otherwise?

Well, they are FALLEN. Free choice just like us. That changes one’s character I reckon.
I don’t see a reason to change my mind on this yet, but I’m willing to be schooled! :slight_smile:


#48

You may be right and yet some think thus…

According to Old Testament regulations (Leviticus 11), swine were “unclean.” Edmond Hiebert noted that it “is generally assumed that the owners were non-Jewish, but it is possible that Hellenizing Jews, lured by the good market for swine flesh in the cities of the Decapolis, may have engaged in raising pigs for financial gain” (Commentary on Mark, Greenville, SC: Bob Jones University Press, 1994, p. 133).

The scholarly R.C. Foster once observed that Christ “permitted the destruction of the swine knowing that it would awaken the Gergesenes from their indifference and ultimately assist in the salvation of a multitude in the community” (Studies in the Life of Christ, Grand Rapids: Baker, 1971, p. 599).

It’s an interesting thought that an apparent spirit being can be held captive by a physical entity, in this case pigs, while at the same time physical entities, in this case humans, can be held captive by spirit beings… go figure — again, why can an angel not therefore inhabit a believer? At least with the former we can always claim… “the devil made me do it:wink:


#49

Good one!:laughing:
My guess is that angels know their place? The Holy Spirit does not possess, as such, but ‘fills’. Possession is a violent thing, perhaps, and unlike the unfallen Angelic agenda.
Mysteries for sure.


#50

You can’t just assert that no one can argue something that I’d just argued. And contrary to your sheer pronouncement, beliefs and claims of curing demoniacs are actually ancient and universal. Virtually every religion and cultural tradition all over the world for thousands of years has taken part in the idea of spirit possession and the need of exorcism.

In ancient Mesopotamia times, (which was around 5,000-3,500 B.C.), it was believed that all forms of sickness came from powerful spirits that entered a person’s body and attacked them. There are Assyrian tablets which reference the use of incantations and prayer to the gods, as well as direct challenges to demons, which were believed to cause every sort of disease, both physical and psychological.

In the Hindu religion, the Vedas, which were written around 1,000 B.C., refer to evil beings that conflict the work of Hindu gods and harm the living. There are also accounts from ancient Persia, which date back to around 600 B.C. It provides evidence of exorcism using prayer and ritual by the religious leader, Zoroaster, who was the first magician, and the person who founded the religion, Zoroastrianism.

Josephus reports exorcisms, and even the O.T. has David e.g. make the evil spirit depart from Saul.


#51

I tend to see Satan as the ego. I spent three months contemplating spiritual things a while back. I lost 50 pounds and did battle with my ego (Satan). St. John of The Cross describes it as being like Jonah was - in the belly of a whale. That’s how it was for me. All your sins come to the surface and torment you as you undergo purgation. It’s a painful crucifixion with Christ as you are baptized and resurrected to new life.

There were four blood moons those past years. I saw the last one in September. September is the month of my birthday. It’s also the day when the year of Shemittah began as it was tied in with the blood moons. There were four cups of wine at Passover before the judgment and crucifixion of Christ. The fourth cup that Jesus drank from in His suffering and death is the Holy Grail. The cup of wrath that was poured out fills up with the blood of Christ. This is His love or the cup of our salvation for us. I was in faith union with Christ and judged during my “Day Of Judgment”. What Satan meant for evil God meant for good. For the Year of Jubilee was also tied in with the blood moons and was the 40th from the time of the crucifixion. 40 which means redemption. This also began in September - the month of my Birthday. Incidentally, Catholics hold the feast of Michael and the angels is in September. My first name is “Michael” and my last name is a French name and means holly tree or holy tree. Like St. Michael the French holly is used to fight off and defend against evil. Moreover, France is where the Catholics honor St. Michael the Archangel. Likewise, September is the day that classes start to become Catholic here. My painful day of judgment and crucifixion with Christ was also my baptism and new birth with Christ. The Catholics have a picture of St. Michael holding the scales of justice crushing Satan’s head. See below on the “Holy Grail”. The scales of justice are also my birthday sign “Libra”. I discovered all this information after my judgment and redemption. So, it’s got to be valid.

archangel-St_-Michael%5B1%5D

The Holy Grail

The scales of justice balance in September
As Michael crushes Satan’s head in death
Ego is cast out, the new self is in union with Christ
Flames of torment destroy the self of the old
I stand on this Holy Mountain of God crucified
Baptized into water, death, and fire, I’m made new
The cup of the Holy Grail infuses precious stones within
As I become drunk on the Beautiful cup of blood
Victory reigns at the core in the Holy land of Eden
In celebration of the marriage with the Lamb
I have fallen madly in love with love

I found this book below “The Catholic Warrior” at the Catholic bookstore on Spiritual Warfare after all this happened:

catholic_warrior%5B1%5D


#52

Yep… probably was thoroughly confused with David playing Led Zeppelin’s ‘Stairway to Heaven


#53

First, I challenge Bob and qaz to watch this well-crafted documentary of modern Catholics confronting the demonic, complete with videotape of the actrivity:

https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=exorcisms+youtube&docid=608041778522623247&mid=768F6DCFD6AE8721E603768F6DCFD6AE8721E603&view=detail&FORM=VIRE

Second, I challenge them to find even one Jewish example of s pre-Christian exorcism of a demon in Palestine; Remember, I’m not talking about spells to remove oppression by discarnate humans or gods; I’m talking about absolutely malevolent demons in service of Satan. So your Hindu examples are irrelevant.

Third, and most crucially, stop ducking my point that you both are falsifying Jesus teaching about His exorcisms as a unique demonstration that the Kingdom of God has come upon us. His incarnation coincides with the era in which such exorcisms become a new possibility. As you know, the kingdom of God is the most central aspect of Jesus’ teaching. Here are the relevant texts you need to address:

“If it is by the finger of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you (Luke 11:20).”
“If it is by the Spirit of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you Matthew 12:26).”

To deny the reality of exorcism of demons is to refute a central part of Jesus’ self-understanding.


#54

My demons are the ego. I was diagnosed schizoaffective (bipolar type) and have received tremendous healing. Not perfect yet but I no longer take mood-stabilizers. This is why I hold to free will and to G.K. Chesterton’s paradox of predestination. The determinism of Hyper- Calvinism with it’s unbreakable chain leads to mental illness. It’s ego to the extreme. It places you at the center of the universe with no break in the causal chain. I was diagnosed with this. Listen to Tolle describe this:

The mental illness that is called paranoid schizophrenia, or paranoid for short, is essentially an exaggerated form of ego…The mental illness we call paranoia also manifests another symptom that is an element of every ego, although in paranoia it takes on a more extreme form. The more the sufferer sees himself persecuted, spied on, or threatened by others, the more pronounced becomes his sense of being the center of the universe around whom everything evolves, and the more special and important he feels as the imagined focal point of so many people’s attention.

Listen to G.K. Chesterton in Orthodoxy:

Obviously if any actions, even a lunatic’s, can be causeless, determinism is done for. If the chain of causation can be broken for a madman, it can be broken for a man. But my purpose is to point out something more practical. It was natural, perhaps, that a modern Marxian Socialist should not know anything about free will. But it was certainly remarkable that a modern Marxian Socialist should not know anything about lunatics. Mr. Suthers evidently did not know anything about lunatics. The last thing that can be said of a lunatic is that his actions are causeless. If any human acts may loosely be called causeless, they are the minor acts of a healthy man; whistling as he walks; slashing the grass with a stick; kicking his heels or rubbing his hands. It is the happy man who does the useless things; the sick man is not strong enough to be idle. It is exactly such careless and causeless actions that the madman could never understand; for the madman (like the determinist) generally sees too much cause in everything. The madman would read a conspiratorial significance into those empty activities. He would think that the lopping of the grass was an attack on private property. He would think that the kicking of the heels was a signal to an accomplice. If the madman could for an instant become careless, he would become sane. Every one who has had the misfortune to talk with people in the heart or on the edge of mental disorder, knows that their most sinister quality is a horrible clarity of detail; a connecting of one thing with another in a map more elaborate than a maze. If you argue with a madman, it is extremely probable that you will get the worst of it; for in many ways his mind moves all the quicker for not being delayed by the things that go with good judgment. He is not hampered by a sense of humour or by charity, or by the dumb certainties of experience. He is the more logical for losing certain sane affections. Indeed, the common phrase for insanity is in this respect a misleading one. The madman is not the man who has lost his reason. The madman is the man who has lost everything except his reason.

The lunatic’s theory explains a large number of things, but it does not explain them in a large way. I mean that if you or I were dealing with a mind that was growing morbid, we should be chiefly concerned not so much to give it arguments as to give it air, to convince it that there was something cleaner and cooler outside the suffocation of a single argument. Suppose, for instance, it were the first case that I took as typical; suppose it were the case of a man who accused everybody of conspiring against him. If we could express our deepest feelings of protest and appeal against this obsession, I suppose we should say something like this: "Oh, I admit that you have your case and have it by heart, and that many things do fit into other things as you say. I admit that your explanation explains a great deal; but what a great deal it leaves out! Are there no other stories in the world except yours; and are all men busy with your business? Suppose we grant the details; perhaps when the man in the street did not seem to see you it was only his cunning; perhaps when the policeman asked you your name it was only because he knew it already. But how much happier you would be if you only knew that these people cared nothing about you! How much larger your life would be if your self could become smaller in it; if you could really look at other men with common curiosity and pleasure; if you could see them walking as they are in their sunny selfishness and their virile indifference!

Mysticism keeps men sane. As long as you have mystery you have health; when you destroy mystery you create morbidity. The ordinary man has always been sane because the ordinary man has always been a mystic. He has permitted the twilight. He has always had one foot in earth and the other in fairyland. He has always left himself free to doubt his gods; but (unlike the agnostic of to-day) free also to believe in them. He has always cared more for truth than for consistency. If he saw two truths that seemed to contradict each other, he would take the two truths and the contradiction along with them. His spiritual sight is stereoscopic, like his physical sight: he sees two different pictures at once and yet sees all the better for that. Thus he has always believed that there was such a thing as fate, but such a thing as free will also. Thus he believed that children were indeed the kingdom of heaven, but nevertheless ought to be obedient to the kingdom of earth. He admired youth because it was young and age because it was not. It is exactly this balance of apparent contradictions that has been the whole buoyancy of the healthy man. The whole secret of mysticism is this: that man can understand everything by the help of what he does not understand. The morbid logician seeks to make everything lucid, and succeeds in making everything mysterious. The mystic allows one thing to be mysterious, and everything else becomes lucid. The determinist makes the theory of causation quite clear, and then finds that he cannot say “if you please” to the housemaid. The Christian permits free will to remain a sacred mystery; but because of this his relations with the housemaid become of a sparkling and crystal clearness. He puts the seed of dogma in a central darkness; but it branches forth in all directions with abounding natural health. As we have taken the circle as the symbol of reason and madness, we may very well take the cross as the symbol at once of mystery and of health. Buddhism is centripetal, but Christianity is centrifugal: it breaks out. For the circle is perfect and infinite in its nature; but it is fixed for ever in its size; it can never be larger or smaller. But the cross, though it has at its heart a collision and a contradiction, can extend its four arms for ever without altering its shape. Because it has a paradox in its centre it can grow without changing. The circle returns upon itself and is bound. The cross opens its arms to the four winds; it is a signpost for free travellers.

This is why I say we are to become nobody special.


#55

Berserk, You asserted, “There are no examples of exorcisms of demons in the Ancient Near East.”

First, you can’t duck the widely documented reality that scholars of religion find this false and find exorcism widely in ancient religion, by claiming their definition of possession doesn’t agree with your own exact notion of “absolutely malevolent demons in service of Satan in Palestine.” I see no support for your assertions.

Second, you can’t duck that there’s no support for this assertion by insisting to someone who’s told you he’s witnessed the work of many colleagues who are into exorcism, that he must watch your favorite video (or by appealing to Scott Peck’s interesting perceptions). That’s old stuff to me and irrelevant to what I addressed.

Third, and most crucially, you can’t duck supporting your claim by insisting I address every belief you share, such as simply reasserting your view that Jesus simply could not reflect first century views that are questionable. Practically every scholar I know, even liberals, shares my belief that Jesus had a powerful deliverance ministry, and it makes great sense to me to offer this as evidence that the reign of God was at work. But none of that prevents me from believing that other things can be learned in the centuries since about what the actual dynamics of such maladies involves, nor is relevant to what I disputed.

It’s fine with me if you personally find it crucial to deny wide evidence that ability to exorcise was claimed all over the place, or to endorse ancient ontologies of how evil works with psychokinesis, bright lights, etc. But I reject your insistence that no one else can question your theories.


#56

IF one feels the need one can still affirm Jesus’ exorcism of demons as a then present reality and yet via the fulfilled view understand that thereafter because of the Coming of the Kingdom all such oppression thereby ceased, being defeated; GIVEN that said Kingdom DID indeed come… unless of course you’re STILL waiting for it to come — which might explain why you believe you still see devils — but that then makes Jesus’ words all rather weak IF devils are STILL possessing… nah! :smirk:

You really should consider the full texts you yourself reference… THIS was no “new possibility”…

Mt 12:27 And if I cast out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they shall be your judges. Cf. Lk 11:19

Again… along with Jesus Luke likewise acknowledges Jewish exorcists…

Acts 19:13-14 Then some of the itinerant Jewish exorcists took it upon themselves to call the name of the Lord Jesus over those who had evil spirits, saying, “We exorcise you by the Jesus whom Paul preaches.” Also there were seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, who did so. Cf. Mk 8:38; Lk 9:49

IF you are willing, consider the following by the non-Christian Josephus speaking of the great pre-Christian King Solomon…

Antiquities of the Jews — Book 8:2:5

God also enabled him to learn that skill which expels demons, which is a science useful and sanative to men. He composed such incantations also by which distempers are alleviated. And he left behind him the manner of using exorcisms, by which they drive away demons, so that they never return; and this method of cure is of great force unto this day; for I have seen a certain man of my own country, whose name was Eleazar, releasing people that were demoniacal in the presence of Vespasian, and his sons, and his captains, and the whole multitude of his soldiers. The manner of the cure was this: He put a ring that had a Foot of one of those sorts mentioned by Solomon to the nostrils of the demoniac, after which he drew out the demon through his nostrils; and when the man fell down immediately, he abjured him to return into him no more, making still mention of Solomon, and reciting the incantations which he composed. And when Eleazar would persuade and demonstrate to the spectators that he had such a power, he set a little way off a cup or basin full of water, and commanded the demon, as he went out of the man, to overturn it, and thereby to let the spectators know that he had left the man; and when this was done, the skill and wisdom of Solomon was shown very manifestly: for which reason it is, that all men may know the vastness of Solomon’s abilities, and how he was beloved of God, and that the extraordinary virtues of every kind with which this king was endowed may not be unknown to any people under the sun for this reason, I say, it is that we have proceeded to speak so largely of these matters.


#57

I wrote this on casting out ego (satan)

With shyness there’s the desire to be great but an intense fear of rejection that causes one to withdraw. Pride is based on the same fears and anxieties but is more aggressive. It boasts in it’s own wisdom, powers and resources. It’s a failure to trust God and manifests strongly in atheism. It’s a failure to trust in God’s power, God’s riches, and God’s wisdom to run things. With faith in God’s wisdom, power, and resources to run things we glorify God because we are trusting in Him to meet our needs. All gifts of grace are blessings from His hand as we are humbly grateful to Him. There’s no need to exalt ourselves. We glorify God by trusting Him for what we need and being grateful for what we have. He gets the glory or the credit because we are relying and depending on Him. Without this faith and dependence on God we take credit for our good deeds. This is self glorification. Taking credit for good deeds leads to self-esteem and self-esteem leads to ego and ego leads to sin. We develop an exaggerated sense of our own importance. This is a trigger for paranoid and suspicious thoughts. Thinking we are at the center we become so important that we think that we are being monitored or tracked by people. This leads to thinking others are coming after us to harm us when in reality they are not. We have an exaggerated sense of our own importance. With faith in God we surrender to His loving control over our lives as the future is secured and the anxiety is broken as one has hope. He’s the all-powerful, all-glorious one. We let go and surrender as we empty the self depending on Him in surrendered trust. All power, honor, praise, and glory go to God. This is where we find true joy. It’s not the same joy as self-exaltation or the praises of man. But a sober humble joy in glorifying God with faith, gratitude, and humble obedience. It’s not self-reliance but God reliance. The reality is that only God is self-sufficient. We are finite, limited, and dependent creatures.

It’s happened for me in stages and I’m still not perfect. But you have to reach a point where you let go and surrender and let God have control. This is faith. Gaining self knowledge helps also. Aware of myself produced pain and shame and guilt. It’s through prayer and meditation that you can let go of your false self or character defects to where the light of God’s grace shines through. Sometimes it’s ecstatic but not all the time. Peeling away the layers is a process. Quite painful at times. Another thing that has helped me is meditating on God. Contemplating His attributes. There’s a separation that takes place as you come into union with Christ. Just as He emptied Himself and became nothing. For example: There are ways we are like God and ways we are not. Knowing the Creator creature distinctions should produce a measure of humility in us.

God is all-powerful - I am not

God is in control of the universe - I am not

God is self-sufficient - I am not

God is infinite in wisdom and knowledge - I am not

God is perfect - I am not

God in infinitely glorious and beautiful - I am not

I have faith and rely on God. His glory is the beauty of His infinite perfections. The more I glorify God like Jesus did the more glorious I become. The glory of the creature is in humility. God is all powerful. I’m powerless and depend on Him. It’s when the ego takes control we try to exalt ourselves on the level of God. This is what Satan did and since he’s a finite creature it leads to megalomania. It has for me as well. I start seeking my own glory instead of being satisfied in God’s glory. But when I’m empty of self His grace enters in and He receives the glory. In not seeking our glory we receive a glory but it’s not intrinsic. It is derived from God. The paradox is that we keep it by giving it to God. Or as A.A. tells us we keep it by giving it away. In losing ourselves we find ourselves. As an empty vessel His love and beauty flow through.

Faith in God

Gratitude to God

Hope in God

Love God above all (worship)

Fear of God (consequences of evil deeds)

are the things that glorify God. Giving God the credit for His gifts of grace and being thankful for our blessings. This is the heart that overflows with outgoing love.


#58

True. What about Tibetan Buddhism, that has its origins…in Buddhism and the Shamanistic Bon religion? As a member of the Theosophical Society in America…with headquarters in Wheaton, Illinois (chiefly for their extensive, scholarly library)…I can attest that Tibetan Buddhism alone, is full of historical (and contemporary) cases of exorcism.

And we just need to examine, this Wiki article:

Let me quote a bit:

Beliefs and practices pertaining to the practice of exorcism are prominently connected with Hindus. Of the four Vedas (holy books of the Hindus), the Atharva Veda is said to contain the secrets related to exorcism,[15] magic and alchemy.[16][17] The basic means of exorcism are the mantra and the yajna used in both Vedic and Tantrictraditions. Vaishnava traditions also employ a recitation of names of Narasimha and reading scriptures, notably the Bhagavata Purana aloud.

According to Gita Mahatmya of Padma Purana, reading the 3rd, 7th and 9th chapter of Bhagavad Gita and mentally offering the result to departed persons helps them to get released from their ghostly situation. Kirtan , continuous playing of mantras, keeping scriptures and holy pictures of the deities (Shiva, Vishnu, Hanuman, Brahma, Shakti, etc.) (especially of Narasimha) in the house, burning incense offered during a Puja , sprinkling water from holy rivers, and blowing conches used in puja are other effective practices.[ citation needed ] It is also believed that praying to Lord Hanuman gives the best result. It is also mentioned in the Hanuman Chalisa. It is believed that just uttering the name of Lord Hanuman makes the evil forces and devils tremble, in fear.

Islamic exorcisms consist of the treated person lying down, while a sheikh places a hand on a patient’s head while reciting verses from the Quran, but this is not mandatory.[19] The drinking or sprinkling of holy water (water from the Zamzam Well) may also take place along with applying of clean non-alcohol-based perfumes, called as ittar.[20]

Specific verses from the Quran are recited, which glorify God (e.g. The Throne Verse (Arabic: آية الكرسي Ayatul Kursi )), and invoke God’s help. In some cases, the adhan (call for daily prayers) is also read, as this has the effect of repelling non-angelic unseen beings or the jinn .[ citation needed ]

The Islamic prophet Muhammad taught his followers to read the last three suras from the Quran, Surat al-Ikhlas (The Fidelity), Surat al-Falaq (The Dawn) and Surat an-Nas (Mankind).[ citation needed ]

A hadith recorded in Sahih al-Bukhari , 8:76:479 states: “Seventy thousand people of my followers will enter Paradise without accounts, and they are those who do not practice Ar-Ruqya and do not see an evil omen in things, and put their trust in their Lord.” Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyya, a scholar, commented on this hadith , stating: That is because these people will enter Paradise without being called to account because of the perfection of their Tawheed, therefore he described them as people who did not ask others to perform ruqyah for them. Hence he said “and they put their trust in their Lord.” Because of their complete trust in their Lord, their contentment with Him, their faith in Him, their being pleased with Him and their seeking their needs from Him, they do not ask people for anything, be it ruqyah or anything else, and they are not influenced by omens and superstitions that could prevent them from doing what they want to do, because superstition detracts from and weakens Tawheed".[21]

In Taoism, exorcisms are performed because an individual has been possessed by an evil spirit for one of two reasons. The individual has disturbed a ghost, regardless of intent, and the ghost now seeks revenge. An alive person could also be jealous and uses black magic as revenge thereby conjuring a ghost to possess someone.[24] Members of the fashi, both Chinese ritual officers and priests ordained by a celestial master, perform Chinese rituals, in particular, exorcisms.

Historically, Taoist exorcisms include chanting, physical movements, and praying as a way to drive away the spirit.[25] Rituals such as these occur during festivals. Rituals such as these are considered of low order during these festivals. They are more for entertainment than a necessity during festivals.

The leaders of the exorcisms create a dramatic performance to call out the demons so the village can once again have peace. The leaders strike themselves with a sharp weapon so they bleed. Blood is considered to be a protector, so after the rituals, the blood is blotted with a tissue and put on the door of houses as an act of protection against evil spirits.[26]

I think I have enough documented (and footnoted) examples, to back what Bob is saying.

P.S. SOME examples of forum “scholarship” here…by “experts” on this forum (this excludes Bob, who is a real expert - IMHO)…is like putting perfume on a pig.

image


#59

I find this topic bizarre as I said before Satan and demons are referenced numerous times by numerous authors and so if one chooses to attribute this as non literal for various reasons then by what rational do you believe anything in the bible? It seems arbitrary to me based on emotion rather then any analysis of any logical basis. I’m signing off here as I can’t add anything to this topic.


#60

I don’t see faith as an all or nothing affair in which if we accept one article (Jesus’ resurrection) as literal, we’re thereby obligated to accept everything else in the narrative literally. I evaluate the plausibility of everything on its own terms.