The Inner Struggle

So, Sin, and Fomenting Spirits … where to now?

Setting Your Rocks Back …

I hope you all remembered to set your rocks back one hour to adjust for the end of “daylight savings time”, whatever that is. Didn’t we invent electricity so we didn’t have to worry about daylight and darkness?

I’m just trying to inject a little “light” humor since my last two or three posts, if given consideration and thought might be a real downer, a reminder of just how miserable folks can be.

I can’t imagine any honest review of the lists that wouldn’t find something familiar for virtually every one alive today, probably every human who ever lived starting with Adam.

So, “Daylight Saving Time”, what a joke … a friend of mine sent this stony humor picture to me Sunday morning as a bit of a pick-me-up. I needed it after the last week. Another Facebook post was the Old Indian meme from kevin-stafford.weebly.com.

Old Indian

Old Indian

Humor is good. Without humour, dark or light, life would truly be a never ending grim slog to death and desolation.

And without being able to laugh at ourselves, we would have a grim old time getting through the crap that we create ourselves so that we can continue to pretend that we are really “nice, good” people.

On the mundane side of the ledger, I started watching a new series on Netflix, “Designated Survivor” staring Kiefer Sutherland.  I actually am enjoying it in the same way I enjoyed “West Wing” with Martin Sheen, as satire rather than political drama as the left wing reviewers and publicists on the Left Coast like to present it.

The series message is a glaring exposition of the efficacy of the big lie in our materialist lives. The words of the prophets truly are written on the subway walls, and tenement halls …

The Sound of Silence, Simon & Garfunkel, 1964

The publicists rather obvious underlying intent is that a “political drama” has some resemblance to truth and reality, some street cred, as opposed to satire which is obviously a mockery of the point of view espoused in the entertainment.

C.S.Lewis presents an ideal of satire in the “Screwtape Letters” but far enough down the path to perdition, a reader might in fact fail to appreciate the satire in the book and find it rather a boring training manual for liberal bureaucrats and publicists.

The series “Designated Survivor” follows the structure of: “if you are going to tell a lie make sure its a WHOPPER”, and make sure that the fabric of the lie is at least entertaining and invites one to suspend belief for the duration of an episode, even if it will still be obviously a lie to anyone with two neurons firing. When we watch Superman fly we all know its a lie, but it is fun to suspend belief for an hour or two.

As “political drama” it falls “flatter than piss on a plate” as we used to say in the NAVY, but as “satire” it is hilarious. and while we are in the neighbourhood, just take a look at “Heartbreak Ridge” starring Clint Eastwood for another variation of this sort of satire. Even the plays of Shakespeare combine “political drama” and “satire”, and let the audience take what they will from it. Watching others take themselves too seriously is always rather entertaining.

“Designated Survivor” was actually cancelled for primetime in May 2018 and its fate was said, by ABC, to have been sealed by a ratings plunge in season two and its loss of traction in delayed viewing. Whatever, and maybe some people believe that, but why did the ratings drop is the real question.

In its first season, the show regularly registered triple-digit gains in Nielsen’s live-plus-7 ratings, but the second season it averaged 8.6 million viewers and 1.7 rating in adults 18-49 in L7, compared to 12.1 million viewers and 2.9 in adults 18-49 in season one.

In the absence of a clear narrative road map for a third season and declining poll numbers, “Designated Survivor” couldn’t recover from the loss of its base. Like politics, primetime TV is a fickle business.

Well, like it’s previous version, “West Wing”, the primetime “Designated Survivor” failed because, at its root, it is a big lie. Politics, and the media representation of it really is all about the big lie. Lets take a look at the fact based reality of recent history. Who are the haters?

Ya can’t fact check Facebook, nor is it possible to disagree with the trolls who just scream down any voice of dissent in the belief that theirs is the only “right” truth.

Lies sell well on Facebook and amongst progressive leftist cliques and their dupes like “Occupy Wall Street” in big urban centres, and lies can even be entertaining for a while as one watches the true thoughts and “feelings” of the authors pour out in all their malicious ugliness.

But when the fundamental premise of anything passing for “entertainment” is a bald faced lie, a re-writing of reality to suite the producer’s circle-jerk fantasy du jour, it’s demise is foreordained regardless of the excuses offered.

That meme, the entire “Not My President“, Evil Military Masterminds, evil Republican congressperson, evil treacherous treasonous military hero meme, is in fact, entirely the position, the fortress of solitude, the religious belief of the Democratic party, and all their thoughtless legions of supporters, media, voters and academics.

Thinkers and those even slightly interested in fact check-able truth and reality and having more than a 10 minute event horizon and a bit of memory are definitely not the target audience.

And “The Folks”, as O’Reilly calls them, are not even remotely as stupid and gullible as the left seem to sincerely believe.

The knuckle-dragging, red-necked, bitter clinger, in flyover country only ever existed in the minds of left wing haters like Obama and Trudeau, and the rest of the parasitic horde.

These are folks, just like everyone else, but they find the idea that someone doesn’t share their perverse and deviant system of beliefs simply “inconceivable!”. This whole mindset is just so “sophomoric”.

This series premise, in re-writing and reversing the clear evidence of recorded history, is a reliable indicator that even the producers of this cartoon series understand at a deep level that they are on the wrong side of history and will be remembered as “useful idiots” at best.

Truth be known, their true role is as malicious purveyors of evil, divisive, propaganda on behalf of shadowy interests whose only goal is the destruction of America and what it once represented in the world.

The goal, of course is to re-write history into the ‘acceptable” version for enough voters that it will become politically incorrect to ever mention the historic truth. And if enough people believe the lie, then we really get the government we deserve, with collapsing banking systems, declining manufacturing, a service economy of burger flippers and dog walkers, valueless dollars and social welfare all around.

The end game is the total dependence on a government which has now made it perfectly legal to kill anyone and everyone who is found to be “inconvenient”. This all seems so “Eastern Block” somehow, doesn’t it?

Oh Canada

Do you doubt it? What do you call Abortion, and Euthanasia, and Eugenics, and how do you explain the total absence of Downs Syndrome sufferers, crippled seniors, and other handicapped people in Iceland and Belgium and soon Canada.

Right here at home, in “Toronto the Good”, the Toronto Hospital for Sick Children is now offering both full term partial birth abortions and even euthanasia for children covered by federal “health” funding, free, without parental consent or involvement.

And that’s just  the start of the slippery slope aimed at creating the master race, Lest we forget, Canada has a long and proud tradition of eugenics going back to the 19th century. Ever hear of the “Famous Five”? George Bernard Shaw?

Those are just a few of the famous folks, lauded in Canada, who subscribed to the “too many of them and not enough of us” social philosophy that inevitably results in the sterilization or murder of those considered “socially undesirable”, those lesser races, like Blacks, and Slavs, and Gypsies, and Catholics, and Jews, well, you get the drift ….

And here you thought this was a NAZI problem? Ha! Welcome to reality. I learned about all that stuff in History class, long before History was sanitized into politically acceptable “Social Studies” by our “self esteem” focused indoctrinators in our public “education” system. The left wing Socialist, NAZI regime had nothing on the super efficient modernization of the Canadian Final Solution. Evil is evil is evil, no matter how you dress it up.

So ATTENTION CLASS! Pay attention now, remember Arbeit macht frei ? This is a German phrase meaning “work sets you free”. The slogan is known for appearing on the entrance of Auschwitz and other popular Nazi summer camp programs.

So the question is, for extra credit, “What is the moral difference between the Nazi social policies which gave rise to death camps, or Soviet social policies which gave us the Gulag, and the current Western government policies which facilitate cleaning up the population by killing inconvenient people?” Anyone?  Anyone? Evil, is evil, is evil, even if we would prefer to believe that we are nice good people.

*****

When we tolerate the killing of people simply because of who they are, we lose our own moral standing (and our right) to exist. Recall what Abraham Lincoln wrote about the justifications offered in defense of slavery.

You say A. is white, and B. is black. It is color, then; the lighter, having the right to enslave the darker? Take care. By this rule, you are to be slave to the first man you meet, with a fairer skin than your own.

You do not mean color exactly?—You mean the whites are intellectually the superiors of the blacks, and, therefore have the right to enslave them? Take care again. By this rule, you are to be slave to the first man you meet with an intellect superior to your own.

But, say you, it is a question of interest; and, if you can make it your interest, you have the right to enslave another. Very well. And if he can make it his interest, he has the right to enslave you.

Do you lose your right to life because of who you are? Because you are gay, or a girl, or a Tutsi, or black, or a Jew, or a Christian, or have an extra chromosome?

Does a person lose his right to live because of his geography? Did a person lose his right to live in Mao’s China because of where he was? Would he have retained that human right had he been in Taiwan? Does a person not have a right to live because he is a few centimeters inside the birth canal and then gain it when he is a few centimeters outside of it? “

*****

This is all just part of the big lie, that killing people is a “solution” as long as the people in question are not me, and maybe not you, but the jury is still out on you. Accepting and not questioning the big lie in our entertainment makes accepting the big lie much easier in our social policies.

So back to “Designated Survivor”.  How about the lies in this series, the distortion of truth, the re-writing of history … ?

Traitors in Michigan ...

Traitors in Michigan …

Just one tiny example of the lie in the TV series, is casting Michigan as a hotbed of treachery and malice. In the context of historical fact, this is an understandable revenge attack, dressing up slander in nice makeup and flashy clothes.

The ignored “Sure Blue Union State” produced a Red Tide of betrayal when election night rolled around. They need to be punished for their treachery! So, lies sell,  lies sell well, because at the root of all things we all want to believe that we are actually  “good” people, not tools of evil.

We all want to “feel  good” about ourselves, no matter what the truth is.

Remember all that BS about “self-esteem” that became the bulk of our academic curriculum in the last few decades?  Well, what we see around us now is how unfounded “self esteem”, “it takes a village”, “no child left behind”, plays out in the real world.

The masses, sincerely believing that the world owes them, simply because they have a pulse, produce and consume lies as reality, they vote for the sunshine pumpers, and the Kool Aide just keeps flowing.

circa 1965: Head shot portrait of American comedian and actor Flip Wilson (1933-1998), (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Unfortunately, that fantasy doesn’t play well in reality. Evil is evil and always will be evil, and evil doers are not “good” people, no matter how many mountain ranges of propaganda come out of the progressive media everywhere.

There are no “good” people. We all do evil. And in the end, lies are just lies. and the liars are merely useful idiots working for the Father of Lies, shoveling coal for Satan, as some wag once remarked.

I just finished re-reading through the lists of my last 3 posts, and I find it chilling. Our modern society has perfected the art of pretending that demons and evil spirits do not exist, “that stuff” is all just silly superstition, simply superstition or imagination.

And of course if we are believers, that doesn’t give us all a free pass for bad behavior, as Flip Wilson used to say “The Devil Made Me Do It!”, well … that just doesn’t cut it. We are personally responsible for our behaviour, our acts and our thoughts.

My last two posts are rather grim if one is even a little interested in the problem of sin, and eternity. If one is not interested then there is just no problem, everything in life is OK and these posts are just the delusional rambling of some old school superstitious peasant in the boondocks of rural Western Canada.

Here we are, church going riflemen, out standing in our fields, the Great White North, last bastion of the Bitter Clingers. That’s certainly what my urban Atheist sisters would say, or my equally urban Wiccan Priestess auntie, and all my non-religious, but “very spiritual” extended family and in-laws.

Whited Sepulchers

We have perfected the art of pretending that these are just “human” problems, demons and evil spirits do not exist, they are simply superstition or imagination, and of course I don’t have any of these problems because I am practically perfect in every way.

Really? Superstition? Imagination? Of course, I really don’t have any of these problems, and they have government Programs for those people who do have these sorts of problems or there’s an App for that. Really? This view is not actually very helpful, is it?

Pope Francis recently referred to Pope Paul  VI, who, in 1975, covered this well in his speech on Christian Faith and Demonology: placed emphasis on the fact that:

Pope Francis

“… evil is not simply a force in the background but rather (is) truly present, a living being who is spiritual, perverse, and who renders perverse (everything it touches). … (It) is a horrifying reality, a mysterious force who spreads fear.”

I am thinking about millions of people completely ignorant of actual demonic and evil spiritual activity in the material world and the manipulation of the minds and self of human beings by these spirits.

It is chilling, an unimaginable horror story involving all humans, both the innocent and the guilty everywhere, every day.

The lists are literally a catalogue of almost every imaginable social problem, iniquity and misery afflicting our modern progressive materialistic society, our “polite”, “nice”, “friendly” Canadian culture.

So once again, I think that I am faced with an apparent binary choice … to accept the massive cognitive dissonance radiating from literally every Canadian News report and polite cultural meme,  OR to reject it all in favour of measurable reality  and abandon hope of ANY possible positive resolution to the “challenges” I see before us on every side.

I am invited, tempted in fact,  to see a binary choice and only a binary choice … accept that the media talking heads and the politicians know the truth and are telling the truth and things things are better than they have ever been and are getting better, if only we acquiesce to their chosen “solutions, OR … accept the despair of a no hope future where all ends in misery and death.

But that is really a false choice, offered by one who has everything to gain by the misery and despair inevitable on the track we are following. The real choice is actually GOD, or no god. We always find ourselves falling short, full of miseries, failures and sin, always indebted to GOD. We deny and lose faith in GOD because our souls always shiver with fear because we are aware of our failing and dread how GOD will receive us,

Will He turn us away and punish us for our failure and lack of faith? Our miserable selves always answer yes to the punishment concept when in fact that is the age old lie that led Adam to hide himself when he heard God walking in the garden. We don’t trust that GOD loves us. Our limited God holds guilt and justice for us or worse as god we refuse to acknowledge His very existence.

And how can that turn out well? Because we are literally “dead” wrong about GOD. GOD is different from what we believe. I believe that GOD loves me and wants to take me back if only I will acknowledge my sins humbly and simply and sincerely ask for forgiveness as did the thief on the cross beside Jesus. “The Lord saith: I think thoughts of peace and not of affliction. You shall call upon Me and I will hear you, and I will bring back your captivity from all places.” these are consoling words taken from the Catholic Mass. they open our hearts to the sweetest of hopes. GOD loves us in spite of all.

More on GOD’s love and mercy later

Cheers

Joe

Frodo … was asleep almost before the words were spoken. Sam struggled with his own weariness, and he took Frodo’s hand; and there he sat silent till deep night fell.

Then at last, to keep himself awake, he crawled from the hiding-place…. The land seemed full of … noises, but there was no sound of voice or of foot. Far above the Ephel Dúath in the West the night-sky was still dim….

There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tor high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him.

For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach. His song in the Tower had been defiance rather than hope; for then he was thinking of himself.

Now, for a moment, his own fate, and even his master’s, ceased to trouble him. He crawled back into the brambles and laid himself by Frodo’s side, and putting away all fear he cast himself into a deep untroubled sleep.

 

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The Inner Struggle

Sins & Fomenting Spirits – part 1

This has turned into a rather long post, perhaps too long for comfort, so I just decided to split it into two parts with the division being in the middle of the lists. So this becomes part one and the next post is now part two probably to be posted tomorrow or the next day.

I started this post in order to just to get all this stuff into one place where I can think about this and work with it. I am creating this post and the next one,  to hold my new list. The “new” thing for me here is the realization of the actions of evil spirits on the real material world, rather than simply their existence in the spiritual plane.

This is a list of “fomenting spirits” together with quotes from source documents and articles, drawn from my recent reading of works  by and about exorcists, about the (probably) billions of evil spirits referred to in this popular Catholic prayer to Saint Michael the Archangel:

Holy Michael, the Archangel, defend us in battle. Be our safeguard against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray; and do you, O Prince of the heavenly host, by the power of God cast into hell Satan and all the evil spirits who wander through the world seeking the ruin of souls.
Amen.”

Destroyer, Heavy Seas

Destroyer, Heavy Seas, Please! GAWD! HELP US!

My father taught me that prayer, or at least tried to when I was a youngster, although, after leaving the Catholic Church of the late 60’s in my all knowing teenage arrogance,  the prayer which I prayed most in my military service in my late teens and 20’s was:

GAWD! PLEASE! Help us survive this and I swear I will be good for the rest of my life. I will never have another drink and I will go to church and I will never again lust after women! Please! GAWD! HELP US!

prayed with deep sincerity as we found ourselves, again and again, in situations and conditions which seemed at times to leave no hope of survival no matter how professional we might be. It’s funny how we all promise to be good when death is eminent, God gets real when situational things over which one has absolutely no control, are getting worse and you might actually be stepping through the last door in a moment.

Anyway, on with the subject of “Fomenting Spirits”, I never really held this sharp a focus on the action of evil spirits in this world as opposed to their mere existence. Important things to remember when reading entries on these lists is to bear in mind that since so many demons and evil spirits identify with the vice or attitude they seek to foment, they answer to these names.

As a result some of the entries in these lists will correspond to those vices, disorders and attitudes which these spirits and demons foment. However, other entries can be such that they correspond with a purely natural problem or disorder, or even in some cases not a disorder in itself  but something which may become disordered by the involvement of demons and spirits.

Some of the list entries (below or in part two) indicate nothing harmful in itself but may describe the victim’s interior struggles in that fashion, such as “marionette/puppet” may describe how a person might feel interiorly in their struggles. For example, were a demon or spirit to succeed in inducing a contemplative religious to compulsively bite his nails it would be a great victory to distract that would-be man of prayer from that which he and the world need most.

So, while reading through the lists, here and in part two, one should not presume that a natural activity which in itself is not disordered is somehow by nature driven by diabolic influence. These “fomenting demons” or “fomenting spirits” are evil spirits whose primary task in our material reality is to incite or cause troublesome acts; to encourage; to instigate and to otherwise get humans to misbehave in more or less serious ways, they indeed are … all the evil spirits who wander through the world seeking the ruin of souls”. Where do all these spirits come from?

Pascal's Wager

Pascal’s Wager for modern progressives … The “I am going to heaven because I am nice” crowd

I consider my incredulity regarding the popular modern notion of “everybody goes to heaven because God is merciful and doesn’t send souls to hell”. And then I look at the observed actuality of the majority view always getting things wrong about pretty much everything that there is a majority opinion about, from politics, to science, to social structures, to economics.

In all these fields of human endeavor, it is pretty much a given that if most folks agree on something then it is probably wrong or mistaken. Probably the Pareto principal applies here as in every other thing, that is 80% of the people are wrong 80% of the time. Remember that Pareto formulated the 80/20 rule for wealth distribution and curiously it seems to apply to many other fields of observation.

Anyway, with that likelyhood in mind, I inevitably find myself thinking about the alternative view, the 20% view, which incidentally seems also to be Christ’s words  when answering questions on things like this in scripture, namely that God truly doesn’t send anyone to hell.

It’s all about the wide road and the narrow gate and realizing too late that the door is now closed, and few go to heaven. OOOPS!

And scripture tells us in many places, that God truly doesn’t send anyone to hell, God is indeed merciful, and he gives everyone the gifts and grace to get to heaven. The trouble is, that we reject those gifts. In fact souls actually choose hell because they cannot stop loving themselves. Souls in the depths of their self love cannot, humbly, and with sincere contrition, acknowledge their sins, beg God’s pardon for their sins.

And while they are at it, they cannot accept that literally everything in our lives is a gift from God, because we really cannot do it ourselves. Humility and gratitude have gone missing. This necessary “attitude of humble gratitude” just doesn’t line up very well with the prevailing modern opinion that “of course I am a nice person, a good person, I don’t sin, and I am practically perfect in every way … what I have taken to calling “Poppins Syndrome”. Lets visit a paraphrase of some ideas by Ulrich L. Lehner, in his book “God Is Not Nice: Rejecting Pop Culture Theology …” thus:

Ask yourself: “If you died tonight, why should God let you enter heaven?” The most frequent answer I, Joe, personally have heard to this question, namely: “if you believe in heaven, do you think you are going there?” are simply variations of “I have done good things, and I haven’t killed anybody or committed adultery or theft. I am a good person.

It seems that most folks I have talked to seem to have some warm and fuzzy idea of some place after death that equates to “heaven” and they feel somehow that it is their right to go there. But that is definitely not what the Church really teaches. What the Catholic Church teaches is that no one actually deserves heaven.

So lets do a little walk through that logic, the logic of “I am going to heaven because I am nice and a good person…”, a little thought experiment  (German: Gedankenexperiment, GedankenExperiment, or Gedankenerfahrung,) considering this heaven hypothesis, for the purpose of thinking through its logical consequences.

Well, I am 66 years old now. Let’s say I live another 14 years, to eighty years. Of these eighty years, I will have been able to use reason and be morally responsible for perhaps between sixty to seventy of them. Within this 60 year time span I sacrifice a bit, put it all on the line for others for a while, I get married, have a kid, maybe some grand-kids, maybe I help a few people along the way, give a bit to charity every year, and retire happily and live out the remainder of my short life doing good deeds and singing in church.

The question then becomes: “For the relatively few good actions in a very short life, should I earn an infinity of bliss and happiness?” That sounds a lot like fraud, like an impossible Ponzi scheme!” To remind us, a Ponzi scheme (/ˈpɒnzi/; also a Ponzi game) is a form of fraud which lures investors and pays profits to earlier investors by using funds obtained from more recent investors.

The Church rejected that view in the fourth century by declaring Pelagianism a heresy. Pelagius was a pious monk who lived in the fourth century and believed in free will but also stressed that it is our good works that save us. For St. Augustine, Pelagius’s view did not make sense. If we can merit our own salvation, then Christ died in vain, Augustine reasoned.

So, Pelagianism was opposed by Augustine, bishop of Hippo, who asserted that human beings could not attain righteousness by their own efforts and were totally dependent upon the grace of God. Pelagianism was condemned by two councils of African bishops in 416, and again at Carthage in 418, Pelagius and his disciple Celestius were finally excommunicated in 418; Pelagius’ later fate is unknown.

The controversy, however, was not over. Pelagianism proved to be a right pernicious heresy.  Julian of Eclanum continued to assert the Pelagian view and engaged Augustine in literary polemic until the latter’s death in 430. Julian himself was finally condemned, with the rest of the Pelagian party, at the Council of Ephesus in 431. Another heresy, known as Semi-Pelagianism (q.v.), flourished in southern Gaul until it was finally condemned at the second Council of Orange in 529.

So the teaching of the Catholic Church is that nobody can work herself or himself into heaven. If we are saved, it is only by the grace of Jesus Christ, and our works are only meritorious because of Christ’s merits. Only if we “bet” on Christ and his grace, as the philosopher Pascal said, (see Pascal’s Wager graphic above) will we win eternal life. So why do so many of our contemporaries have a problem with this basic, universal Christian doctrine?

Calvin & HobbsWhy is it that almost all Catholics, and almost all Christians these days, are secretly (whether they realize it or not) Pelagian? I think one of the main reasons lies in the development of modern transactional thinking in the last three hundred years, the notion of receiving wages and a “just compensation package” for fulfilling our side of the transaction, combined with the current culture of self love, namely we actually deserve whatever we want as a “right”. We don’t feel gratitude for something which is our right.

By throwing out gratitude, we also got rid of humility. And the departure of these virtues has changed our image of God. Now we seem to, sort of, think of God as a fuzzy, nice guy, sort of insurance policy which pays out bliss and happiness for eternity. We have paid our premiums by living a “good” life and the payout comes when we die. It is our “right ” as part of the transaction.

If we are no longer fundamentally grateful and humble, God is no longer in the picture because “we can do it our own way.” I am not saying that we should not be proud of our achievements, but rather that we should realize where they originate. Everything is “Gift”. If we fall into the trap of believing that we are “lords of our lives,” we will also go down the road of deceiving ourselves that we can make it to heaven without God.

paraphrased from: Ulrich L. Lehner, “God Is Not Nice: Rejecting Pop Culture Theology and Discovering the God Worth Living For” (pp. 29-31). Ave Maria Press.

My take on scripture is that, absent humility, contrition and atonement, and absent a state of grace, the default destination is Hell for the majority of humanity throughout time. I don’t believe this in a “Jansenist” sort of way but rather that this outcome just seems to be the logical outcome of the evidence observed throughout history and in the world around me. And this leads to the next thought, namely, if these souls, these spirits don’t end up in purgatory or heaven, then where exactly do they go?

The only answer left, allowing for a “spiritual” world view, is hell. But hell is really the absence of God, and Revelations 12:4 tells us: “And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman who was ready to be delivered; that, when she should be delivered, he might devour her son“. So presumably, along with a third of the angels, the fallen angels or demons, these spirits who reject God end up wandering throughout the world seeking the ruin of souls. So, numbering them in the billions doesn’t seem such a stretch.

So if it is accepted as true that only a “few” souls get to heaven, and the rest all become wandering evil spirits here on earth, we are subject to the ultimate form of “peer pressure” that of all these evil spirits encouraging us to believe lies and to behave badly, and to indulge ourselves in our desires and attachments and self centered behaviour, and all the while we tell ourselves that we are good people.

Because ultimately, all these spirits want us to stay in the “evil” club, the “No God” club, or group, or clique, the ultimate “cool clique” for all eternity. In a way it is a lot like Socialism and its direction to deliver all people to a lowest common denominator of misery, we are all “equal” in our misery.

I first read about these sorts of spirits, “Fomenting Spirits”, while reading about the Desert Fathers, Saints, and other Christian mystics, for example the Torment of St. Anthony. The following lists are found in Appendix 1 of “Deliverance Prayers for use by the laity” by Fr. Chad A Ripperger PhD . The following are lists used by exorcists to determine the sin, vice or (fomenting) spirit involved.  So, finally, here are the lists! These are:

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The Torment of Saint Anthony, Michelangelo

The Torment of Saint Anthony, Michelangelo

Lying Spirits: Pretension, Unreality, Denial, Delusion/Labyrinth, Convoluted Thinking, Cheating, Neglect of Responsibilities, Irreverence, Circumvention, Folly, Concealment, Blindness of Spirit, Evasiveness, Deceit, Mask, Game Playing, Deception, Illusion, Diversion, Error, Drama, Marionette-Puppet, False, Farce, Hallucination; Smoke & Mirrors, Harlequin Mask, Imitation, Pantomime, Counterfeit, Role Reversal, Fraud, Detraction, Incredulity, Coy, Cunning, Undermining, Aping, Dichotomy, Juggling, Duplicity, Facade, Dual, Showmanship, Theatrics, Show, Acting, Trickery, Magic, Mockery, Appearances, Fantasy, Heresy, Legion, Subversive, Irony, Mimicry

Unclean Spirits: Unclean & Offensive Conditions, Compulsiveness to Clean, Involuntary Vices (Obsessive Compulsive), Compulsion, “I have to”, Distortion of Truth, Busybody, Nosey, Curiosity, Violation of Confidentiality, Rumors, Critical Judgment, Perverted Judgment, Perverted Thinking, Scandal, Spirits that cause Accidents

Theft: Stealing, Greed, Avarice, Materialism, Possessiveness, Hoarding, Covetousness, Collecting, Exclusiveness, Making Excuses for Sin & Infidelities to God; Neglect-Omission; Inability to Pray Because of Worldly Cares; Inability to Give or Share, Stingy; Inability to Give Praise & Thanksgiving to God or to People

Mental Illness: Dyslexia-Learning Disabilities, A.D.D., A.D.H.D., Schizophrenia, Multi-personality, Bi-Polar – Manic Depressive, Mania, Insanity, Depression, Borderline, Neurosis, Psychosis, Paralysis, Post-Traumatic-Stress Syndrome, Anxiety Disorder, Panic Disorder, Disconnected Spirit, Disjointed Spirit, Fractured Personality, Split Personality, “Undo”, Opposites, Retardation, Tension, Chronic Fatigue, Eating Disorder, Memory Loss, Distorted Thinking, Distorted Hearing, Mental Torments, Confusion, Procrastination, Compromise, Indecision, Doubts, Anorexia, Bulimia, Stuttering, Death Wish, Physical Ailments: GI Problems: Diabetes, Heart Disease, Obesity, TMJ – Grinding Teeth, Spoliosis, Night Sweats, Night Tremors, Palsy, Paralysis, Parasites, Crippling Disease, Enuresis, Bleeding, Vomiting, Coccyx Bone Crack, Sinus & Respiratory Problems, Birth Defects, Migraine Headaches, Back Problems, Vision Problems, Hearing Problems, Speech Problems, Metabolic Problems, Gland & Hormone Problems, Tumors, Cancer, Arthritis (unforgiveness), Smell, Taste, Throat & Vocal Cords, High Blood Pressure, High Cholesterol, Liver, Lungs, Exhaustion, Weakness, Life’s Breath, Pneumonia, Tuberculosis, Insomnia, Hay Fever, Deaf & Dumb, Fibromyalgia, Lupus, Allergies, Asthma, Lyme Disease

Torment of St. Anthony, Martin Schongauer, 1470

Torment of St. Anthony, Martin Schongauer, 1470

False Religions & Philosophies: Jehovah Witness, Christian Cults, Christian Science, Scientology, Eastern Religion, Zen, Buddhism, Ancestor Worship, Taoism, Islam, Karate-Martial Arts, Yoga, Mind Science, Paganism, Pantheism, Druid, Celtic, Bahai, Heathen Worship, Lodges-Masonic, Renew 2000, Future Church, Protestantism, Schism, Mormonism, Rainbow Girls, Rosicrucians, Moonies, Unity Churches, Secret Societies, New Age Religions, Social Agencies, Freemasonry, Indian Religions, Socialism/Communism, New Age, Quakers, Shakers, Native American Spirituality, Indian Powwow, Shamanism, Hinduism, Atheism, Agnosticism, Heresy, Anti-Clericism, Mafia, Nationalism-Nazism

Abandonment of Religious Practices: Minimalization of Sin, Spiritual Pride, Abandonment of Vows, Abandonment of Vocation, Anti-Christ Spirit, Religious Errors, Apostasy, Doubters of True Faith, Jansenism/Puritanism, Spiritual Gluttony, Spiritual Wrath aimed at God, Spiritual Envy of the Gifts of others

Those against the Spiritual Life: Spiritual Sloth – Sadness of the Things of God, Sacrilege, Sins against Vows, Scrupulosity, Fear of Vocation, Abandonment of Promises, Feminism, Liberalism, Hatred of the Catholic Church, Fascism, Racism, Marxism, Blasphemy, Apostasy, Contempt for God, Sacrilege of Priestly Sacred Character, Occult

Superstitious practices: Satanism, Divination (Methods of Seeking Guidance & Knowledge from the Demonic), Familiar Spirits, Witchcraft-Wizardry, Wicca, New Age Practices, Out of Body Experiences, Santeria, Voodoo, Celtic, Druid, Evil Eye, Bohomo, TM (Transcendental Meditation), Mantras, Crystals, Reiki, Eneagrams, Magic, Evil Levitation, Handwriting Analysis (the predicting of the future, the reading of the past of a person’s life by the analysis and so forth), Seance, Ouija Boards, Yoga, Black Masses, Devil Worship, Palm Reading, Tea-Leaf Reading, Tarot Cards, Horoscopes, ESP, Silva Mind Control, Hypnotism, Centering Prayer, Martial Arts, Any powers Apart from God, Acupuncture, Homeopathic Remedies with Ritual, Channeling, Contacting the Dead or Disembodied Spirits Through: seances, dreams, Divining with Tree Root, Curses of the Occult Against The Priesthood, Celebration of Halloween – Costumes of the Demonic, Wearing of: Devil’s Horn, Rabbit’s Foot, Pentagram, Tattoos, Mood Ring, Biofeedback, Dungeons & Dragons, Rock & Roll/Jazz, Bloody Mary, Light as a Feather, Stiff as a Board, Eastern Star, Job’s Daughters, Good Luck Charms, Lucky Coins, Magic Eight Ball, Numerology, Spiritism, Astrology, Pyramids, Parental Spirits

*****

Pope Francis

Pope Francis

That’s plenty long enough, isn’t it?. I find just reading through these lists to be chilling. Pretending that demons and evil spirits do not exist, that they are simply superstition or imagination is not actually very helpful. And of course if we do believe, that doesn’t give us a free pass for bad behavior, as Flip Wilson used to say “The Devil Made Me Do It!”, just doesn’t cut it. We are responsible for our behaviour, our acts and our thoughts.

Pope Francis recently referred to Pope Paul  VI, who, in 1975, covered this well in his speech on Christian Faith and Demonology: placed emphasis on the fact that, “evil is not simply a force in the background but rather truly present, a living being who is spiritual, perverse and who renders perverse. He is a horrifying reality, a mysterious force who spreads fear. Anyone who refuses to recognize his existence is distancing themselves from the framework of Biblical and Church teaching.

Not much to cheer about in this and the next post … part two… a lot to think about, and pray about.

Joe

 

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