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"Christian" focus in contacting 'spirits'


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#1 dancinmiriam

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Posted 18 June 2009 - 03:44 PM

I, as many, am new to the board and hope I do not break (inadvertently) any protocol or etiquette and am very open to instruction. Let me begin by saying I am a 'believer' - that is, I have been contacted throughout my life by beings on some other plane of existence (ghosts? ?). My query goes to the overwhelmingly "Christian" and especially "Catholic Christian" focus in contacting the other side. I am a Jew, and as observant as I am able which would, at first blush, seem to be at odds with this "Christian" focus - a lot having to do with so-called demonic possession among others. Can anyone enlighten me on this score?

Asked with all respect for the faiths of any others at this site.
I see dance being used as communication between body and soul, to express what is too deep, too fine, for words. ~ Ruth St. Denis

#2 Vampchick21

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Posted 18 June 2009 - 04:35 PM

Moving this to the religion board.

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#3 earth_spirit

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Posted 18 June 2009 - 06:46 PM

Thanks for posting this, dancinmiriam, as it's really quite an interesting topic. And believe it or not, the best resource I've found so far is our own Jeff Belanger!

He did a very interesting interview with Rabbi Gershon Winkler several years ago that might shed some light on the subject:

Dybbuk - Spiritual Possession and Jewish Folklore
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#4 aloha_spirit

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Posted 18 June 2009 - 10:52 PM

I'm Christian, but not Catholic.

My sect strongly discourages us from initiating contact with the deceased. However, visitations are not necessarily seen as evil. My grandmother traveled thousands of miles after her death to say good-bye to me.

Demonic possession is real. However, most alleged cases are misdiagnosed mental illness. Possession happens when a spirit takes over a person's body. That spirit will fight to keep its new home.

I didn't lose my mind - I have it backed up on a disk ... somewhere


#5 carlotta

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Posted 19 June 2009 - 07:15 AM

Demonic possession is real. However, most alleged cases are misdiagnosed mental illness. Possession happens when a spirit takes over a person's body. That spirit will fight to keep its new home.


It's not always a demon or evil entity that is possessing someone. People who have "passed on" and don't know they're dead, will float around until attracted to the energy of a living person, a relative or a complete stranger, and get stuck there. These attached entities will influence the host's habits and behavior consciously or unconsciously. One live person can have one or more attached entities and not know it.

I found the following book so interesting that I read it twice:
"Hauntings with a purpose" by Hazel Denning

Possessions can happen to persons of any faith. How the possession is dealt with is influenced by the local medical and religious establishments.

Carlotta
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#6 Redhead

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Posted 19 June 2009 - 08:37 AM

Welcome to our Village, dancinmiriam. I am Catholic and Franciscan at that. I have been given conflicting information about contact with spirits of those who have passed on, so I think that it's like a lot of things. Some priests are more 'old school' and others take a more enlightened approach. When my mother was a girl, she was friends with the niece of a well known local medium. This family attended Mass in the same parish as my mother's family. The medium did very well and was highly respected for her accuracy and work. Any time a parish held a bazaar for a fund-raiser, she donated her services by having a fortune telling booth. She charged a nickel or dime (it was the depression) depending on age, and donated every cent to that church. My priest doesn't have much to say on this subject, saying that it is up to one's conscience. I follow my own prayers of protection, but don't particularly believe in demonic possession happening as often as many others seem to believe.
In my own research, it seems that the more fundamentalist Christian groups/people are more likely to believe in and have fear of demonic possession. And it seems like more and more people are splitting off of main-stream fundamentalist churches, like Baptist, and going more indepentant - not organised or set rituals, just showing up and listening to preaching/singing. These are the people who seem to be most worried about my soul and that I'll be possessed by the devil by doing anything pertaining to the paranormal. I have even been told that reading my horoscope in the paper will attract the devil to me since horoscopes are the devil's work. This person tried to get me into her church so they could have a special service to save me.
Don't get me wrong, I am not trying to be disrespectful of anyone or their belief system, just telling about my exeriences. I am able to reconcile things for myself easily because this has always been a part of my life, for as long as I can remember. And from what my older sister has told me, longer than that. I feel that if this was wrong, God would not allow me to see/hear/feel/know what I do. I have never had a priest or a nun tell me that this is a sin or playing with fire or anything like that. In fact, I recently attended a paranormal convention/investigation. I had told my book club about going - there's two nuns in the club - and they all were interested in hearing about what happened. Neither sisters - one 75 and one 88 - seemed concerned for me or unbelieving for that matter. They both asked questions of me and didn't act as though I'm foolish or in danger of losing my soul. Of course, they are Franciscan and that may make a difference.
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#7 Der Beamte Des Teufels

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Posted 19 June 2009 - 06:02 PM

To be honest, and in my opinion, demonic possession is a product of Hollywood, overreaction, ignorance, and the media. Possession -not demonic-, I feel, can only occur through direct contact and willingly allowing an entity to enter your body in a fashion akin to that of a medium's. And really, why would a demon bother possessing the body of a living being? That seems to me as if that'd be the last thing on their agenda. Why waste their time? As it is, possessing a body has little significance. The most any entity can do is talk. They can't physically injure another person, drive a car or dominate the world. The only way you'll become possessed by a demon is if it's in your head you'll get possessed or you have a psychological problem. Spirit possession, however, is real but they're spirits and must be willingly allowed to enter your body to usurp control.
"I slept with faith and found a corpse in my arms on awakening; I drank and danced all night with doubt and found her a virgin in the morning." - Aleister Crowley

#8 dancinmiriam

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Posted 19 June 2009 - 06:34 PM

Thank you all for your thoughtful replies. I may have not stated my question quite clearly, however. I am not so much curious about 'possessions' or 'demons' particularly - I tend to agree with the last poster - but, why there seems to be a prevalence of folks using clearly and unequivocally "Christian" means of divination and or communication and remediation. The use of Christian prayers and calling upon 'saints' which seems to all but preclude those of us who do not take Jesus as the Christ. Any insight is much appreciated. I have had and am currently experiencing some 'occurrences' that I want to address in a forthright, logical manner without what appears (at first blush) to be Christian-centric approaches to the para-normal. I absolutely respect each persons choice of faith path - just trying to figure out an approach that fits within my own belief system/path.
I see dance being used as communication between body and soul, to express what is too deep, too fine, for words. ~ Ruth St. Denis

#9 Vampchick21

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Posted 19 June 2009 - 06:58 PM

That prevalence stems from Christian believers. I'm a neo-Pagan and have a very different way of looking at things from someone from any given denomination. And I'm rarely if ever bothered by any seeming Christian-centric view of the paranormal.

If someone is calling on saints and using Christian prayers, I'll bet my bottom dollar that individual is a Christian. Other faiths and belief systems have their own ways of viewing the paranormal, explaining it and dealing with it.

Feel free to go to our Personal Encounters board and share your experiences and ask your questions. Just because someone posts some advice or thoughts that stems from their Christain belief system doesn't mean you have to follow that advice, agree with those thoughts or use the advice in the exact manner described.

It's nothing deep or that takes a long effort to explain. It's just that what you are seeing is the Christian manner of dealing and it is far from the only manner of dealing.

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#10 aloha_spirit

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Posted 19 June 2009 - 08:44 PM

why there seems to be a prevalence of folks using clearly and unequivocally "Christian" means of divination and or communication and remediation. The use of Christian prayers and calling upon 'saints' which seems to all but preclude those of us who do not take Jesus as the Christ. Any insight is much appreciated.


When dealing with spirits, you need to fortify your own confidence. Christians believe in the power of the Tetragram, so they call upon Him. Catholics and some other Christians believe the early Saints have power to intercede between man and heaven. Who or what you call upon is not as important as the faith you have in them.

I have had and am currently experiencing some 'occurrences' that I want to address in a forthright, logical manner without what appears (at first blush) to be Christian-centric approaches to the para-normal. I absolutely respect each persons choice of faith path - just trying to figure out an approach that fits within my own belief system/path.


Make substitutions from your own faith to make the ritual your own. Are there passages from the Talmud which have a spiritual effect on you? Are there mantras you can recite to increase your will power when dealing with these spirit visitors? Do what works for you.

I didn't lose my mind - I have it backed up on a disk ... somewhere


#11 dancinmiriam

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Posted 20 June 2009 - 01:20 PM

Thank you all for your responses - I think it does boil down to what I have felt - as one poster stated - it is the belief in what you are doing that makes it effective ( I am paraphrasing - I think it was said much more eloquently). I do plan on posting at the 'encounters' section, as I could use some assistance. I suppose a lot of it is just 'Hollywood'.
I see dance being used as communication between body and soul, to express what is too deep, too fine, for words. ~ Ruth St. Denis

#12 PHANTOM MONK

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Posted 03 August 2009 - 04:00 PM

Thank you all for your thoughtful replies. I may have not stated my question quite clearly, however. I am not so much curious about 'possessions' or 'demons' particularly - I tend to agree with the last poster - but, why there seems to be a prevalence of folks using clearly and unequivocally "Christian" means of divination and or communication and remediation. The use of Christian prayers and calling upon 'saints' which seems to all but preclude those of us who do not take Jesus as the Christ. Any insight is much appreciated. I have had and am currently experiencing some 'occurrences' that I want to address in a forthright, logical manner without what appears (at first blush) to be Christian-centric approaches to the para-normal. I absolutely respect each persons choice of faith path - just trying to figure out an approach that fits within my own belief system/path.

I don't see an issue there. One can be a devote "Christian" and still deal with the "darker forces". The question is what do you do with what you get, as perhaps the defining behavior between staying on the straight-and-narrow, or go totally over to the "forces" that exist if you are willing to take the leap. :)

#13 Vampchick21

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Posted 03 August 2009 - 04:19 PM

Phantom, in case you missed it, dancingmiram was asking about methods of dealing with the paranormal coming from an apparent Christain focus, because she is Jewish, not Christian and therefore praying to Jesus isn't her cup of tea so to speak. Your response misses the entire point of the thread.

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#14 fatman

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Posted 16 August 2009 - 07:21 PM

I guess any kind of "ghost" or whatever can mess with anyone from any religion in any manner possible to "them". I'm an atheist and I obviously look at experiences from a totally different angle than those with slight to solid beliefs in their particular religion. I've never had an experience with a religious slant, so I can't relate to dancingmiriam's situation.
I hope she finds the answer she needs.




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