Anyone who has seen the movie The Exorcist will never forget the transformation of lead actress Linda Blair from an innocent young girl into a demonically possessed, vomit-spewing monster. According to Wilkinson's account, some contemporary Catholic priest-exorcists have seen even more horrifying metamorphoses. If the priests interviewed in this informative book are to be believed, there is an increasing demand for their services. Underlying the attraction to exorcisms, Wilkinson speculates, is a desire for simple explanations for complex problems. "In a world awash in catastrophe and unspeakable suffering, many people feel increasingly compelled to see evil in concrete and personified--not to mention simplified--forms, and to find a way to banish the bad." Wilkinson adroitly places those who recommend exorcisms in tension with those who do not see value in the practice. The questions the skeptics raise are obvious but important: are people who desire an exorcism really possessed by Satan, or are they mentally ill? How does one distinguish a "legitimate" possession from other pathologies? This book is certainly not an apologia for exorcisms, but it will appeal to those looking for a fascinating history and some thoughtful commentary from proponents and skeptics alike.
This essential and widely used collection of visions of heaven and hell, the first in English, presents new translations of two visions and newly edited versions of previously translated ones. Describes the place of these works in medieval literature and provides a helpful resource for studying elements of medieval religion. Includes: St. Peter's Apocalypse, St. Paul's Apocalypse, St. Brendan's Voyage, St. Patrick's Purgatory, and the Visions of Furseus, Drythelm, Wetti, Charles the Fat, Tundale, the Monk of Evesham, and Thurkill. Bibliography, index, glossary, notes, illustrated.
If you're a Christian, you are not nose-to-nose with Satan and his millions of demons. Like it or not, you're in their crosshairs.
Satan wants the entire world to defy God and worship him instead. Yet he knows that Christians are the salt of the earth and the light of the world. Your allegiance to Christ threatens his design against every human being and institution. This means that you--and your fellow believers--can expect to be attacked. Blunted. Distracted. Terrorized. Deceived. "Demonized."
What Demons Can Do to Saints, by respected Bible scholar Merrill F. Unger, was written to wake up a largely sleeping church. We can't hope to win the spiritual war against fallen angels if we don't know it's being fought or are ignorant of the resources every saint has in Christ to guarantee personal protection and victory.
With scholarly wisdom and pastoral urgency, Dr. Unger challenges apathy and misunderstanding with concrete biblical answers--facts, not sensationalism.
This book provides a selection of studies on witchcraft and demonology by those involved in an interdisciplinary research group begun in Hungary thirty years ago. They examine urban and rural witchcraft conflicts from early modern times to the present, from a region hitherto rarely taken into consideration in witchcraft research. Special attention is given to healers, midwives, and cunning folk, including archaic sorcerer figures such as the táltos; whose ambivalent role is analysed in social, legal, medical and religious contexts. This volume examines how waves of persecution emerged and declined, and how witchcraft was decriminalised. Fascinating case-studies on vindictive witch-hunters, quarrelling neighbours, rivalling midwives, cunning shepherds, weather magician impostors, and exorcist Franciscan friars provide a colourful picture of Hungarian and Transylvanian folk beliefs and mythologies, as well as insights into historical and contemporary issues.
Using south-western England as a focus for considering the continued place of witchcraft and demonology in provincial culture in the period between the English and French revolutions, Barry shows how witch-beliefs were intricately woven into the fabric of daily life, even at a time when they arguably ceased to be of interest to the educated.