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Exorcism

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/4107524.stm Ironic - I watched the remastered version of "The Exorcist" late this afternoon. Do you believe people can actually be possessed by demons, or are the "symptoms" just manifestations of mental illness?
post #2 of 18
Mental Illness. I've known quite a few people who were supposedly 'possessed' but in reality... they were just deranged or mean...
post #3 of 18
Fat ghosts need to be exorcised more . . .

Sorry, I couldn't help my self (I wuz posessed)

Leonard.
post #4 of 18
It's mental illness. No need for any other explaination
post #5 of 18
Doesn't the Catholic Church have a "procedure" for exorcism in their "manual of operation" ?

(Okay, it could STILL be mental illness)

Leonard
post #6 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by winwin
Doesn't the Catholic Church have a "procedure" for exorcism in their "manual of operation" ?

(Okay, it could STILL be mental illness)

Leonard
Yes, but the only time I've personally known it to be used was in the case of a haunted house my sister was renting. The house was so bad that she and her husband contacted their synagogue, and a group of rabbis observed what was going on there and performed some sort of exorcism ceremony. When that didn't "work", my sister, who was raised a Catholic, contacted the RC Church. Again there was an investigation, it was decided that the house was haunted, and an exorcism was performed. They moved out when that was unsuccessful, too. That place was really frightening, and the landlords decided to stop renting it out, because nobody would stay in it.

Watching "The Exorcist" yesterday got me wondering why I believe that places can be haunted, but not that people can be possessed. To me, places are haunted by ghosts, which are the "prints" left behind by beings that once lived, and are not necessarily bad, whereas people would be possessed by demons, i.e., evil forces that never lived. The rabbis and priests involved were trying to drive out evil, so they obviously wouldn't accept the distinction I make.
post #7 of 18
Well, to believe in possession, there are a couple tenents that have to also be believed. 1. That there are evil "beings", i.e. Satan and/or demons, and 2. that they have an agenda with humanity. If you don't firmly believe either one of those things, then possession has to be written off as something else, such as mental illness. I'm sure that the vast majority of the historical "possessions" as recorded in RC texts from hundreds of years ago were mental illness that they did not understand.
post #8 of 18
I suspect that if an extremely neurotic person, believed deeply enough that the ritual of exorcism could heal them ... the process might be exotic enough, that it might have a temporary placebo effect.
Boo!
post #9 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by valanhb
Well, to believe in possession, there are a couple tenents that have to also be believed. 1. That there are evil "beings", i.e. Satan and/or demons, and 2. that they have an agenda with humanity. If you don't firmly believe either one of those things, then possession has to be written off as something else, such as mental illness. I'm sure that the vast majority of the historical "possessions" as recorded in RC texts from hundreds of years ago were mental illness that they did not understand.
post #10 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by winwin
Fat ghosts need to be exorcised more . . .

Sorry, I couldn't help my self (I wuz posessed)

Leonard.

that's too funny
post #11 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by valanhb
Well, to believe in possession, there are a couple tenents that have to also be believed. 1. That there are evil "beings", i.e. Satan and/or demons, and 2. that they have an agenda with humanity. If you don't firmly believe either one of those things, then possession has to be written off as something else, such as mental illness. I'm sure that the vast majority of the historical "possessions" as recorded in RC texts from hundreds of years ago were mental illness that they did not understand.
Exactly. What I'm "intellectually" trying to do is make a distinction between "hauntings" and "possession", because it seems that many religions don't distinguish.
Just going by some horror novels and films, many lay people also don't, as they often depict houses "haunted" by demons, and people "possessed" by ghosts.
I probably shouldn't watch horror movies!
post #12 of 18
Jcat, are you then suggesting that your sister was mentally unstable ?

I am not being facetious or fractious, I am serious, since the hypothesis is that it is either mental on the part of the person perceiving the phenomena, or is spiritual, and in which case the proper church can remove the problem, and since neither the Jewish or Catholics were able to neutralize the property, then that only leaves the mental illness -- I'm sorry, I probably didn't understand the whole thing.

I do know that a lot of "spiritual infestation" has been scientifically explained, like when Betty and I were newlyweds, there was a train track about a quarter of a mile from the house, and I noticed that at night when we were in bed, I would occasionally feel a light tremble of the house and about 5 minutes later a train would come by, and after connecting the two events, (it wasn't hard) I would tease Betty about it, telling her that the house was haunted and that the ghost was the spirit of a person who was killed by the train and that the ghost was communicating with me and telling me that a train was coming within 5 minutes and to not go close to the tracks, and Betty, bless her, was very impressionable (she has since learned to take me with a grain of salt) and believed me, and she wanted to move until I showed her how the house shook, likely from being on a fault line or a rock ridge or something that transmitted the vibrations of the train to the house, so all in all, a perfectly natural explanation for what appeared to be super-natural phenomena, and I have heard of violas humming at odd times and the problem being traced to something similar.

Leonard.
post #13 of 18
I suppose that since I believe in God I do believe in Satan, and if I believe in Satan I suppose there must be evil beings in this world. It honestly isn't something I worry about or really think about, other than loving some scary movies like the Exorcist.
post #14 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by esrgirl
I suppose that since I believe in God I do believe in Satan, and if I believe in Satan I suppose there must be evil beings in this world. It honestly isn't something I worry about or really think about, other than loving some scary movies like the Exorcist.
post #15 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by esrgirl
I suppose that since I believe in God I do believe in Satan, and if I believe in Satan I suppose there must be evil beings in this world.
I wont even dabble with the ouija board
post #16 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by rosiemac
I wont even dabble with the ouija board
I won't either, although I did have one as a kid once and my mom torn it up and threw it away. Too creepy for me!
post #17 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by winwin
Jcat, are you then suggesting that your sister was mentally unstable ?

I am not being facetious or fractious, I am serious, since the hypothesis is that it is either mental on the part of the person perceiving the phenomena, or is spiritual, and in which case the proper church can remove the problem, and since neither the Jewish or Catholics were able to neutralize the property, then that only leaves the mental illness -- I'm sorry, I probably didn't understand the whole thing.
Not at all, Leonard, because then about a hundred other people, and a score of animals, would also have to be mentally unstable. Far too many people witnessed very weird things in that house. I was thinking more along the lines of the clerics trying to drive out demons, when the problem was a ghost.

This is something we (the faculty) have been discussing at school, too. As some of you know, we have a (harmless) poltergeist, for want of a better word, on the upper floor of the school, who does things like collect board markers and stand them up in a corner, open windows, hide the electric kettle, and make the clocks run counter-clockwise. At this point, there are only two or three teachers who will go up there alone. The classes gather downstairs, and go up in groups. We've only been using that floor since c. 2001, and the "problem" was there from the very beginning.
Anyway, we're moving to a new school at the end of this term, and we're wondering whether the poltergeist is going to move with us, or is somehow bound to the old building, which will probably be ripped down.
post #18 of 18
I love this sort of topic. I'm very "logic" oriented so I love when things happen that I can ponder the cause. I take everything with a grain of salt, even a fairly recent psychic reading I had where they knew about something I had been thinking earlier that day (I never told anyone and wasn't even thinking about it during the reading). They said they were talking to my parents on the other side, but there's my grain of salt. I'm more tempted to believe in the ability to pick up on someone's energy and see what's in their head... such as that mental picture I had of scallions earlier that day while thinking about making dinner. All three psychics in attendance asked me what the deal was with me and green onions.

About a week ago, I was standing in the office door barefoot, when I felt the carpet move away from my foot as if someone had stepped on the carpet directly beside my foot. As much as it was a distinct feeling, I write it off on the fact that I had already had a few to drink.

I can give in to the idea that our spirit energies and life force are strong enough to affect the living realm after we're gone... but demons taking over someone's body I can't quite believe. Although it makes for a scary movie!!
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