"…Satan was now at hand; and from his seat
The monster, moving onward, came as fast
With horrid strides; Hell trembled as he strode." ~ John Milton
One of the most malevolent of all hauntings is a demon haunting – an event involving evil spirits whose only goal is to deceive and destroy.
Unlike wraiths, which are ghostlike images of people who appear shortly after death and who want vengeance for some perceived or actual harm caused them in life, demons will force their will upon vulnerable individuals and take over their bodies.
Spiritually and physically demons assault the living as they engage in spiritual warfare and seek out psychological weaknesses in people. Acting as energy vampires, they suck the life out of the person whose body they have inhabited, while draining the unsuspecting victim of his life force, luck, health, and spirit.
Animals sense a demon's presence and respond with behavior that is so bizarre, pet owners who previously may not have believed in demons, find themselves doubting their own beliefs. Not every animal who behaves strangely senses the presence of a demon, but when no other explanation suffices for an animal's response to the presence of evil, pet owners might suspect a demon.
Ridding Homes of Evil
Ridding your home of demons is best left to the experts, but some solutions for getting rid of demons include: religious procedures such as exorcism (still performed by the Catholic church – though rarely), where priests use holy water; the practice of sea salt sprinkled around the edges of a room or home (a favorite of Supernatural's Winchester brothers); or lighting sage to suppress negative energy.
Demonology and Demonologists
The study of demons is termed, demonology. People who study demons are called demonologists. According to several sources, demonologists must be “called” to the vocation in the same way priests and nuns are called to their vocations. Being called to the study of demonology means to feel a strong pull toward the field of demonology. The decision to become a demonologist is not a choice made lightly.
Because future demonologists are unprepared for just how harrowing an experience dealing with demons can be, they must be mentored. Strong as they may feel physically, all humans are vulnerable to the manipulations of demons. Nobody is exempt from falling under psychic attack by demons who know how to enter a body and cause physical, emotional, and psychological harm, not only to the prospective demonologist but also to his or her family and friends.
Because no one can learn how to become a demonologist from a book or from school, potential demonologist practitioners must first become apprentices, learning from others who have been called to the challenge. Motives for entering the field of demonology cannot be selfish (monetary compensation, fame, etc.), and the demonologist hopeful cannot be young, either, because even a spiritually evolved individual will experience psychic trauma while dealing with evil – dabble with demons without protection from God, and your loved ones will witness your destruction.
Discernment and Demons
Discernment is necessary when dealing with demonic spirits, because evil humans who once lived will be as evil in death as they were in life. However, humans who behave with malicious and evil intent are not demons. Unlike hauntings, where evil spirits demand attention from the living by frightening them, demons will inhabit the human body and take it over.
If you are called to the field of demonology, you will be drawn toward people who will mentor you. But again, pay attention to the forces around you. Both evil and good will be vying for your attention, so the gift of discernment will serve you well when you agree to become another demonologist's intern.
Entering the Demonic Field
If you are curious about the study of demonology, visit:
WORDS OF CAUTION: Never enter the demonic realm without God's protection or you might find yourself in the midst of your own exorcism.
Photo of Nightmare (1800) by Nicolai Abraham Abildgaard is from Wikimedia Commons