Demonize It! The Fundamentalist Obsession with Demons

Satan and demons seem to be everywhere, behind everything happening to our country. This was the rationale behind Rick Perry’s The Response and it is the continuing cry of Christian extremists. It isn’t real world facts that matter to the present-day Republican Party but beliefs: and not beliefs about those facts but beliefs about a very specific and extremist religious dogma.

I wrote about Satan the other day. Today I am going to look at all those demons. But to start off, I have to say a few words about my own religion, because it is from distortions about ancient polytheism (the belief in demons originated in Mesopotamia and the Babylonians had a well-developed demonology[1]) that modern ideas about demons derive.

We Pagans see the world as being full of the divine; Pagans always have, from ancient times to modern. Historically, Pagans saw the world as being full of spirits and this belief was so widespread in the ancient world that it was acknowledged even by Paul of Tarsus (Col. 1:16). The church may have preached against magic and astrology but nobody – even the average Christian on the street – doubted it was all real.

Anyone who has been scolded for using a Ouija board will know that that belief is still with Christians today. If only my kindly Lutheran grandmother would have known she was letting her beloved grandchildren converse with demons! My grandmother would have laughed at the idea, and rightly so. That doesn’t make this world any less real for those who believe in it.

It is no exaggeration to say that Paganism is earth-centered religion and that we see this life as the life we earth-based humans are meant to be living, not some nebulous afterlife. The earth, in other words, is a good place: it is home.

Whatever interpretation you wish to give to that nebulous afterlife, they are secondary to the here and now. Even in my own Heathen form of Paganism, conceptions of the afterlife are varied, and again, always have been; there was no dogma to follow, you see. Pagan religions are not religions of the book; they are not about belief but about cultic acts – rituals.  So hard-and-fast ideas about what happens to dead people were quite varied in the pre-monotheistic world. There was a Greek view that “the righteous dead lived on in heaven with the stars. The epitaph of soldiers fallen at the Battle of Potidaea in 432 BCE says that the aether had received their souls, the earth their bodies.”[2] These beliefs regarding death are important because as Luck says, beliefs in daimonia were closely related to the ancients’ attitudes toward the dead. The dead, like daimonia, could help you.[3]

Even our gods are of this earth, and not, as Christianity as often held it, from outside the earth. Christianity has long held that the earth is a fallen place, in the grip of evil forces, but that is contrary to how polytheists saw it in the ancient world and how we see it today. John J. Collins writes that the Bible and Plato held “that both the creator and the creation were very good.” But celestial eschatology (literally “study of the end times”) changed all this.

“The soul was weighted down by its earthly existence and was liberated to rise up after death” and Gnostics saw the demiurge (literally, “maker”) “as an evil figure and…represented the creation of the material world as a fall.”[4] Souls had to be saved from the material world and that is how fundamentalist Christians see it today. Christians are supposed to be looking to the next life; this is more of a preparatory stage for what really matters: heaven. It is no surprise then that Pagans and Christians see the spirits that inhabit this world in quite different ways, which takes us to Satan and all those demons we keep hearing about.

There is no Satan in polytheistic religions, no cosmic dualism, no good versus evil. Disney may make Hades the antagonist to Zeus’ protagonist but that is not how the ancients saw it. Hades  (his name means “the unseen”) is not to be equated with Satan and in the Hellenistic  period “even Hades was often located in the heavens”[5] and not some dismal below-ground pit of fire and torment. Hades represented the finality of death, not the destruction and enslavement of the soul. Even the ancient Jews, polytheistic to the core, saw only one common post-death end: Sheol, where all the dead went, good and bad alike. And Satan was merely a lieutenant of YHWH, not his arch-nemesis battling God for the souls of all humans.

If Satan’s reputation has suffered so has that of the daimonia of the ancient world. And it wasn’t the Christians who started it, but only popularized it. As Walter Burkett writes,

The gods, theoi, are many-shaped and beyond number, but the term theos alone is insufficient to comprehend the Stronger Ones. From Homer onwards, it is accompanied by another word which has had an astonishing career and lives on in the European languages of the present day: daimon, the demon, the demonic being. But at the same time, it is clear that the notion of the demon as a lowly spiritual being of a preponderantly dangerous and evil character emanated from Plato and his pupil Xenocrates. The notion has proved so useful that it is still impossible to imagine the description of popular beliefs and primitive religion without it; and if in religion an evolution from lower to a higher level is assured, belief in demons must be older than belief in gods.[6]

In fact, the distinction between the two (theoi and daimonia) is not always clear in ancient sources and even Platonists took the trouble of adding the adjective phaulos “bad” to make clear a daimon was bad.[7] For the ancients, daimonia were not fallen angels looking for bodies to inhabit and souls to corrupt but a broad category of divine beings, “widely thought to be less powerful than the gods but far more powerful than humans and capable of influencing human lives”[8] (and see Plato, Symp. 202E). Christians see demons as servants of Satan even though daimon as “evil spirit” appears only once in the New Testament (Matthew 8:31), but without a Satan such demons make no sense.

For Pagans, some daimonia could be dangerous but so could your neighbor’s dog and for that matter, your neighbor himself, who are not necessarily evil but simply had goals that were at cross purposes with yours. Daimonia were, in fact, “relatively indifferent to human activities” and could also behave in beneficial ways.[9] As Burkett puts it, daimonia stood “in the middle between gods and men, they are ‘interpreters and ferrymen’ who communicate the messages and gifts from men to the gods and from gods to men.”[10] The word angel derives from the Greek angelos “messenger” and it wasn’t always clear when a messenger was an angel or a daimon – it depended upon who sent it. As Luck explains,” the term messenger was colorless enough in itself to allow all sorts of different interpretations.”[11]

By the way, if you’re thinking favorable thoughts about angels, think twice: a twelfth century church council “warned against calling on angels for protection against illnesses or evil spirits. The angels are themselves demons.”[12] You just can’t escape the buggers.

Modern people raised in Christian religion need to relearn how ancients understood the cosmos to work, as a sort of divine pyramid, with the god of the philosophers at the top (the Neoplatonic “One”), then the Great Gods (Zeus, etc) in the tier below, followed by local/lesser gods and daimonia and then divine humans and demigods like Herakles, with humans occupying the lowest tier.[13] Looked at this way, it is easy to see how daimonia became messengers – they were far more accessible. And people sometimes wanted to access them; they did not live in abject fear of them as fundamentalist Christians do today.

No Pagan saw homosexuality as a result of demonic possession and anyway, it was the penetrated that was looked down upon, not the one who did the penetrating and for the simple reason that the penetrated was not playing the part of the man but of the woman, who was seen as submissive to the man’s aggressive. Religious dogma had nothing to do with it; these views were cultural. Modern Hellenes (Pagans who worship the Greek pantheon) who despise homosexuality (and who ought to know better) miss this point entirely.

In Christian times, of course, demons became the preferred term to the gods of polytheism (greater and lesser both), to who now belonged matters of this world – a lesser world than heaven for beings of a lesser order.[14] This remains a problem for us today, as MacMullen writes:

Presentist loyalties distort the shape and proportions of the past nowhere more often than in the treatment of religion, and most obviously, our own. The reason surely lies in the overwhelming nearness of the object to be understood; only when seen from a distance does comparisons with other religions make clear the peculiarity of Christianity’s structure.[15]

Unsurprisingly, Allah is also a demon according to Bryan Fischer, ‘a Demon God of Darkness, Violence, Death, and Destruction’ no less.  Only the Christian god can be accorded the title of God, with predictable results for all other deities and their followers. Speaking of Muslims and demons, Right Wing Watch reports that in a 2011 column, “Renew America’s Sher Zieve floats the idea that President Obama might be a demon.” No surprises there, for reasons which will become apparent below.

The Christian idea that people could be possessed by demons was an old one, as Michael Gaddis writes:

Christian apologists had long argued that demons were ultimately to blame for the evils of idolatry, persecution, and heresy – they tricked pagans into worshipping them as gods, and stirred up dissension and argument among Christians. This would imply, at least in theory, that pagans and heretics were not really enemies, but rather helpless victims of demonic delusion. But the ongoing struggle against demons could all too easily slide into ‘demonization’ of one’s worldly enemies.”[16]

Demons also, of course, inhabited Pagan “idols” and even temples.  This is why cult statues were destroyed, and temples too, if they were not rededicated as churches.

And it was not just Pagans who were accused. Christian monks too could demonize each other: “groups with a ‘sectarian’ mind-set tend to preserve their unity by focusing on ‘demonic’ external forces, whether literally (through fears of magic and witchcraft) or figuratively (by ‘demonizing’ human adversaries).”[17]

Gaddis writes that “it took no special effort to persuade monks – who regularly warned each other against demon-inspired false visions, and blamed the devil for their lapses and bouts with temptation – that they were engaged in a struggle against cosmic evil.” No surprise then that “‘Demonization’ in the literal sense – the identification of worldly opponents with Satan – has been argued to be a defining characteristic of early Christian mentality.” If all this sounds familiar, it should.[18]

The Christian monks of late Antiquity, who lived ascetic lives in the wilderness, “understood their endeavors in terms of spiritual combat against demons and the worldly temptations they personified. Resisting temptation, doing battle with the demons, counted as a form of spiritual martyrdom. All of these forms of holiness, in one way or another, constituted ‘bearing witness’ and spreading the faith.”[19]

The difference today is that while worldliness is preached against its fruits are not, and this spiritual warfare has become inseparable from hypocrisy.

Like those ancient monks, fundamentalist Christians blame their own weaknesses and failures on Satan’s influence and on demons and see the rest of us possessed by them. Renew America‘s Michael Bresciani claims, as do most other fundamentalists (including just the other day by disgraced Navy chaplain Gordon Klingenschmitt) that “There is little doubt that the entire gay and lesbian community is guided by a powerful demon spirit who is subordinate to Satan” and that these demons spread lies, a claim which is perfectly in keeping with these ancient attitudes. In many ways, sad to say, Christianity has been very consistent over the centuries.

This of course says much more of their failings and fears than it does we who are so accused. We are in a very real sense not fighting the same battles at all in the culture wars. We liberals see ourselves as battling intolerant (and often poorly educated) humans who have given into bigotry and who refuse to coexist within the framework of the modern liberal democracy, as people who simply do not understand the whole equality thing that lay at the heart of the U.S. Constitution.

But for fundamentalist Christians, something else entirely is going on – there is a level of warfare we liberals are unaware of: spiritual warfare.[20] Thus the war against Saddam Hussein was not just a war against Iraq but against Satan himself. Opposition to liberal legislation and policy is on the same spiritual plane, not just a war against humans they disagree with but humans in the thrall of Satan and demons. Though we laugh at the idea Demonic possession is something very real to these people and we need to understand this if we are going to understand their motives and their goals.

Though we correctly see Satan and his demons using something they invented in the first place to categorize and dehumanize everyone who isn’t like them – a straw man on a cosmic scale – they are quite serious in thinking they need divine intervention to tip the scales. If someone disagrees with them, they can curse him or try to free him from the demons that possess him. It isn’t unusual in Pentecostal circles to run across exorcisms or people who have participated in exorcisms. Pat Robertson brags about doing it himself. Frankly, if anyone can scare a demon it would be Robertson, who at the very least is an arch-demon himself.

This is a war ancient Pagans would no more have understood than the necessity of worshiping only one God. It is a war children of the Enlightenment also fail to understand, placing emphasis on the rational and dismissing the superstitious. We are all damned for it and equally without defense. As I was once told by a Pentecostal when I told her I don’t even believe in her Satan, “You are doing his work by not believing in him.” It’s a war we cannot win because its war in which facts don’t matter, only belief.

We can shrug off their imprecatory prayers and curses as harmless because they are, but we cannot make them understand why we are laughing in response. We are as a result in essentially the same position as all those victims of the Inquisition and the Witch Trials who could not assure their accusers of their innocence because like them, we have been pre-judged and condemned already.

It’s circular logic but then its circular logic that supports their stance on creationism and even the infallibility of the Bible itself. There is no way to crack the circle. All we can do is defend ourselves by ensuring that religious extremists never again hold the reins of power. What they have done in the past will pale in comparison to what they can do today with all the power modern technology offers.

Image from Wikimedia Commons

[1] Georg Luck, Arcana Mundi: Magic and the Occult in the Greek and Roman Worlds: A Collection of Ancient Texts (Johns  Hopkins University Press, 2006), 209.

[2] John J. Collins, “Cosmology: Time and History” in Ancient Religions, ed. by Sarah Iles Johnston (Belknap Press, 2007), 64.

[3] Luck (2006), 210.

[4] Collins (2007), 65.

[5] Collins (2007), 64-65.

[6] Walter Burkett, Greek Religion (Harvard University Press, 1985), 179.

[7] Luck (2006), 207.

[8] Bart D. Ehrman, The New Testament: A Historical Introduction to the Early Christian Writings, Third edition (Oxford University Press, 2004), 492.

[9] Ehrman (2004), 25.

[10] Burkett (1985), 331.

[11] Luck (2006), 208.

[12] MacMullen (1997), 126.

[13] Ehrman (2004), 24-25.

[14] Ramsay MacMullen, Christianity & Paganism in the Fourth to Eighth Centuries (Yale University Press, 1997), 34, 121.

[15] MacMullen (1997), 107.

[16] Michael Gaddis, There is No Crime for Those Who Have Christ: Religious Violence in the Christian Roman Empire (University of California Press, 2005), 180.

[17] Gaddis (2005), 240-241.

[18] Gaddis, (2005), 241.

[19] Gaddis (2005), 169-170.

[20] I have a book of Spiritual Warfare Prayers (1988) compiled from The Adversary by Mark I. Bubeck (Moody Bible Institute, 1975). This book says that if you are diligent in “warfare prayer” you can use this book as a guide to help you “become and ‘overcomer’ of the Evil One!”

22 Replies to “Demonize It! The Fundamentalist Obsession with Demons”

  1. With your last paragraph, I agree wholeheartedly.

    I have seen people become possessed by evil. I have seen formerly living eyes become glazed with malice. I have heard formerly normal voices turn gravelly with an unbridled hate; formerly quick minds, petrified with superstition. I have seen these possessed ones engage in acts of treachery and destruction towards those who had a right to expect loyalty and even gratitude, and I have seen them excuse themselves for deeds they term unforgivable sin in others. What demon possesses them? Sanctimony.

  2. Hrafnkell, I consider it a wasted day when I don’t learn something new, but thanks to you I learned so many new things today, I can take a month off and still have a surplus.

    Your post is a “Must Bookmark.” There is so much meat here it will take days for me to digest it all. Wow. I had no idea. None at all.

    Many, many thanks.

  3. I feel I am the lucky one. I do not believe in any supernatural beings of any kind. No gods of the wind, of the trees, of the earth. I see nothing in believing that a god made the universe, then chose a group of rabid people like the Israelis as “chosen people”, then proceeds to insinuate himself into humans lives while at the same time controlling the spheres of heavenly bodys, while all the time from a tiny dot 3/4’s of the way out of the milky way galaxy which is a large galaxy in a universe of billions of galaxys.

    I dont care who does, but I see no logic to compel me to believe in anyone else’s gods. Demons and gods are borne from fear and a place to put blame. The demons and gods people believe in are a product for the most part of where you are born. If every person in the US was reborn in India, everyone of them would be hindus and would be laughing at christians.

    Demons are conjured up by people in power at any level to produce fear in people. If you dont believe in them they have no power.

  4. …”The soul was weighted down by its earthly existence and was liberated to rise up after death” and….[4] Souls had to be saved from the material world…”

    I had to stop reading right there as I was dumb-struck as to how deeply imbedded, how deeply stuck in a loop, how matter-of-fact this obnoxious concept permeates our culture. It’s not just a personal conviction; it is an alternate manipulation of the universe that has been allowed to permeates us like a pollution we can’t remove. Oh yuk!

    The reason I’m so “dumb-struck” is that I was raised in any religion or church. I’d never even seen the inside/stepped into a ‘house of worship’ until the scouts made a pit stop after a camping trip–I took 2 steps in the door and turned around creeped-out (and it was non-denom)

    My parents were of two different desert religions and us kids never saw a bible; proselytizers were shown the door. Plus, the parents got REAL pissed off if one of the local clerics called and started making demands/doing their shake-down number (as in, baptizes those kids souls or else…). I got my all my Satan “information” from the neurotic kids (those force against their will to spend time with their parents in one of those creepy buildings) who were forced to go to religious schools.(you’re going to hell-elll because yewwww didn’t get new shoes to wear for Sunday school…you don’t go to confession on Saturdays?!…yewwww break the sabbath and go to a movie on Friday night??). I usually snarked back, “Well, we’re Democrats!” looking them in the eye as if this was the same thing as I knew they didn’t know what that was…(I thought I was smart!)

    I digress…the concept of “rising to a better place” after death unto liberation still sticks regardless of how I view the after life; in a way, yeah, this place sucks with all these true believers hanging around trying to stick their noses in MY soul and, making all this noise to they get attention, albeit negative, VERY negative attention.

    My only conclusions, as an observer of this phenomena is, that desert religion (monotheist) are possessed spirits and/or innocent souls who have been “soul murdered” so that the become possessed zombies who follow the voodoo of their masters…therefore, the “after life” HAS to be better than this spiritual dump!

  5. correction: I “wasn’t” raised in any religions…”

    (my hormonal bondage partner keeps interrupting me to look at pictures taken of “the Canyon” and trying to figure out if they’re more Matisse-like or Van Gogh-ish…what a shallow imp!)

  6. A thoughtful and sympathetic comparison of both sides can be found in Gus DiZerega’s “Pagans and Christians: The Personal Spiritual Experience.”

  7. Uh… my people were most definitely not desert dwellers, and we were and are for the most part monotheistic (a few exceptions, but that’s another story). This holds true for other tribes, and I’ve communicated with people from other areas (continents) who have said the same. I think by now that people realize that I’m not out to convert the world or force my faith on anyone else, and I reject the idea of the God promoted by the fundamentalist “Christians” (which I argue is not what Jesus would recognize either).

    I think that there IS a relationship between harsh environments and a demanding, perfectionist God who has violent and abusive tendencies (although the Pueblo peoples probably would disagree with me, from what little I know of their ways). IMO, it’s projection… they’re projecting their environment and its hazards into what they believe. Plus, there is the problem with the writers of the OT… they were trying to justify the existence of the Jewish people as a separate group from the Babylonians, and thus the stories (from a period long before they were born). Some of those stories have been soundly disproved, and scholars argue that they were writing from the historical/geographical understanding of their time.

  8. Good article, Hraf, but I’d also point out that there are cultures who have “demons” (I don’t know what they call them in their own language) who seem to only have the destruction of humanity (even to the individual level) and even nature as a goal and are considered evil by nature. Then, there too is the “principle” I’ve mentioned in other threads which is behind the things we recognize as evil… behind the greed, selfishness, and abuse of the poor by the rich for instance. That also goes for the beliefs and more so actions of the “Good Christians”.

    The Christian scholars I’ve read all agree that the idea of “fallen = evil” is not right or even historical, once you get back far enough. The accurate meaning would be “not perfect” and that is accurate – anyone should agree that this creation is not perfect, and that things like evil do happen. From what I’ve read, the early Christians (with notable exceptions, especially the ascetics) viewed the world as a paradise that needed healing and not a place of danger and evil at every turn – they recognized that danger and evil happened as much from people as anything else. The healing, btw, was done through acts of kindness and mercy, not trying to proselytize.

    Unfortunately, the ascetics got all the press of their time, just as the people who are extreme get it today.

    I would agree that we’re talking about very complex subjects and any simplification will be in error. That’s why I brought up what I did… because while what you wrote was pretty much on target, it doesn’t apply to the whole picture.

  9. Actually, Christianity derives from Jewish apolcalypticism, a worldview held also by Jesus and Paul of Tarsus, that taught the world have come corrupt through the control of Satan (so yes, you could say a paradise in need of healing) but an evil place all the same.

    Jesus did not, however, believe kindness and mercy would heal the world; only God could heal the world through a cataclysmic overthrow of the demonic powers in control of creation. In the apocalyptic worldview, there is no middle ground: everyone is either in the service of good or the service of evil.

  10. Really? Or is that a combination of Paul and the writers who put words in Jesus mouth?

    I don’t agree in the least about that, and if I had more time could continue the argument at length.

  11. Clarification: the “Abrahamic” desert religions” who were monotheist…

    I did not implicate any indigenous American or Pacific Island tribes as they were not a part of the “my-god-is-better-than-your-god” game (to the best of my general knowledge).

    It seems to me the only Abrahamic religions used “the word of god” to justify dominion over everything, and wasted the productivity of the land, irrigated until the nutrients leached out, and cleared away all the natural habitats and diversity…and then blamed “Satan” and demons for their woes instead of taking personal responsibility. It sounds like these folks adopted one of those reoccurring theme

    (see Carl Jung, “Man and his Symbols).

  12. Into this equation add the “free will” mixture and you get a whole different take on this very messy world.
    There is “original sin”, but…”she” ate the apple, so the temptation comes from the women, thus we men need to control her vagina, and all that delicious temptation, oh my!!!
    I find it very interesting that Greeks, among many cultures, considered demons to be intermediaries between us low humans and the gods (Gods?).
    I read a book once called the Necronomicon, basically a book of spells. Why I read it is another story, but we needed information about “devil worship” and “spells” and the Necronomicon gave us a very good working knowledge of spells.
    What I found so interesting about the book was its view of good and evil. Seems as though there has to be a balance in the universe so that we can all exist. In other words, good and evil have to have equal power so things can work right in the universe, in simplified terms.
    The fundies have been able to highjack the political conversation lately, and to take it to the level of Satan and demons is the next step in usurping the US Constitution and the First Amendment by creating a “State” religion of Christen Authority only.
    To have that take place, Satan and demons have to be a very important part of that mix so that only the influence of a Christen God can “save” us (sic)!!
    The more I read of Hraf’s blogs, and the more I explore the actual origins of our spiritual foundations, the more I become to view the Fundamental Christian movement as a very very dangerous attack on the very foundations of this country. Using the tactic of God, to beat down freedom, whether from a dogmatic Muslim or Christen, is dangerous, and has turned deadly, either in the Inquisition of the 1600’s or present day Muslim attacks. It’s all about control, and absolute control, and demons and Satan are really cool tools to use to scare the sh*t out of those who can be manipulated by it. Problem I see; there are lots of people that are influenced by these tactics, and it bodes ill for our freedoms if it is not stopped and exposed for the power grab it really is.

  13. In fact, Isaac Asimov, who wrote extensively-researched scholarly works on the Old and New Testaments, demonstrated repeatedly that it was the hardliners who habitually rewrote both. This is entirely in accord with the authoritarian mindset, especially double-highs. I doubt, based on who he associated with, such as barkeeps, drunks, hookers, Samaritans, and uppity women who knew too much, that the historical Jesus was any such personality.

  14. David, the Necronomicon was basically a compilation of odds and ends of Akkadian literature by a stoned editor who was on a bad trip. I have one.

    That doesn’t mean some of it doesn’t have real literary merit- it contains, for instance, a recognizable rendition of the Descent of Inanna- but whether the stoned editor was the Mad Arab or a spaced-out beatnik has yet to be settled. However, of our electorate, I paraphrase: May the Brain-dead Rise and Smell the Coffee!

  15. Ereshkigal was the goddess of “Hades” or Ishtar’s sister…she was said to be the other face of Enana.

    My favorite modern rendition of this myth was revived by the audio story tellers at ZBS via their infamous series “Ruby the Intergalactic Gumshoe”. (if you have XM-Sirius you can catch the series about once a year on their book channel).

    Talk about a “trippy”…

  16. I would point anyone who questions Jesus’ and the early Church’s apocalypticsm not only to the New Testament and Paul’s genuine epistles but to the scholarly works of Michael Grant, Jesus (1977), E.P. Sanders Jesus and Judaism (1985), J.P. Meier, A Marginal Jew (1991), Bart Ehrman, Jesus: Apocalyptic Prophet of the New Millennium (1999), Gary Wills, What Jesus Meant (2006). Note: Gary Wills believes that to tame the gospels in order to put them to humanitarian uses goes against Jesus’ teachings.

    In fact, that Jesus associated with such people argues for the apocalyptic nature of his mission – these were precisely the people he had come to save. The rich and powerful, by associating with the evil powers, were not going to attain the coming Kingdom of God.

  17. Actually, the Necronomicon is a fictional book that was basically made up by H.P. Lovecraft, but for the research we needed to do, it helped ferret out all the phonies and get them out of the way, so to speak.
    I discovered, in the investigation we had to do to debunk what was going on, a lot about spirits and demons, and the devil. Seems as though the devils bible was actually written in 1964 by a guy named Anton Lavey.
    What it boiled down to was confronting these specific individuals with questions that we already knew the answers too to see what they really knew about devil worship and spells. Turned out they knew next to nothing about it but were real good at convincing people that they really did know what they were talking about.
    This all ties into what Hraf is trying to convey in a lot of what he talks about here, that the “Christens” that scream the loudest about the demise of this country based on the demon possessed President have basically NO knowledge of what they are really talking about.
    Hraf (hope he is not offended by being called that) has pointed out how the bible was constructed over 300 years with documents that were written by men. To say that the bible was spiritually inspired after the facts of all the bloodshed and burnings to make sure only certain documents were contained in the bible is a scary but insightful revelation that calls into question all the verses used by these Christen thugs in discriminating against gays or whatever other demon does not fit their twisted and closed minded maggot infested little minds.
    Other articles by other authors in this blog continue to expose the lies and untruths that are being shouted out as “the Word of God” by these Christen goons and politicians.
    I am not against religion, and there are compassionate and wonderful people of all faiths, that have a strong belief in one God. I am tending to wonder about that particular idea since reading some of Hrafs writings, but still feel comfortable with the idea of one God.
    What I have come to understand is that Pagan and Heathen beliefs are what our current Christen costumes and beliefs are based on. The only difference between the Christen and Pagan beliefs is that Christens burned Pagans for their belief system. Slight difference, but one worth mentioning since Fundamental Christens only want it their way…ONLY! If they (the Fundies) could get away with burning Pagans and Democratics at the stake, they would…really!
    Just a small explanation of my thought process here Reynardine. Enjoy reading your comments as well.

  18. Enlightening as always, Hraf. Never thought about where the idea of demons came from before. It makes sense that the gods worshipped by “others” became the demons to be feared by christians. What better way to get a bunch of like-minded individuals to go kill a group of people who never did harm to anyone ?

  19. What the so-called religious do not understand is that the revelations of Moses, Jesus, Mohammad and others are not eternal revelations. They were meant for the understanding of a population that did not have access to the scientific information that we have. In the meantime, if there was something that they didn’t understand, there was an argument that someone won, and it became part of the dogma. In recent years the religious right has used old ideas (i.e., demons) that were imported into Christianity to frighten and control their congregations. They do this because they themselves are afraid of losing their power. This has nothing to do with religion. It has to do with power. Religion is used as a tool of power. It is not the religion of God that is the cause of the betterment of mankind. It is not the cause of unity, of friendship, of love. It is not the cause of mankind. It is the cause of bitter men who are clinging to their powerbase. Sad.

  20. Just today received Elain Pagel’s book “The Origin of Satan”.
    Looks good. I am interested also in her book on Revelations.
    As a former Catholic, I am intrigued on how the rest of Christians view these subjects.

Comments are closed.