A Demon is a minor spirit that intervenes in the physical world. Demons are generally associated with evil, but in pre-Christian and non-Christian cultures, demons were not, and are, necessarily good or bad. There are good and bad Demons, and Demons capable of both types of behavior. The study of Demons is called Demonology.
The term Demon means "full of wisdom"; Good demons were once called euDemons, and bad demons were called shardDemons. Demon is derived from the Greek term daimon, or "divine power," "fate," or "god."
In Greek mythology, daimon included deified heroes. Daimons were intermediate spirits between man and the gods. A good daimon acted as a guardian spirit and considered himself lucky to have one to guide and protect him.
A guardian daimon would whisper advice and ideas into someone's ear. Evil Daimons can lead one astray. Socrates claimed that he had a daimon his whole life. The daimon's voice warned her of danger and bad decisions, but he never told her what to do. Socrates said that his guardian spirit was more reliable than the omens of flights and the entrails of birds, two highly respected forms of divination at the time.
Demons are controlled by magicians and sorcerers. Solomon ordered the demons to call Djinn to work for him. Demons were exorcised as the cause of illness, misfortune, and possessions. In ancient Egypt, it was believed that a magician who exorcised a demon responsible for a possession would probably use the same demon for other purposes. To this day, in many tribal societies, demons are blamed for a wide range of misfortunes and illnesses.
Jewish systems of demonology have long and complex histories and distinguish between classes of demons. In accordance withMascot, evil powers emanate from the left pillar of the Tree of Life, especially from Geburah, the sephira (sphere) of God's wrath. In the 13th century the idea of the ten evil sephiroth was developed to combat the ten sacred sephiroth of the Tree.
Another system of Demons distinguishes those born from night terrors, and yet another system describes the Demons that fill the sky between the earth and the moon. There are Demons who, with the angels, are in charge of the night hours and the interpretations of illnesses, and those who have seals that serve to invoke them.
In the development of Christian demonology, demons were associated only with evil; they are agents of the Devil. Good Christian spirits belong to the rank of the angels of the Lord. Demons are fallen angels that followed Lucifer when God cast him out of heaven. His only purpose is to tempt humanity to immoral acts and to place himself between humans and God.
As Christianity spread, the ranks of demons increased to include the gods and spirits of ancient Near Eastern and Jewish traditions, and all pagan deities and nature spirits.
As agents of the devil, demons became especially associated with witches during the witch hunts and the Inquisition.
Increase Matter, writing in Cases of Conscience (1693), said:
"The Scriptures affirm that demons and witches exist and that they are the common enemy of humanity." George Giffard, an Oxford preacher of the same time, said that witches should be killed not because they killed other people, but because they dealt with demons: "These cunning men and women who dealt with spirits and spells that seemed to do good and attract people for multiple impieties, with all others who have relationship with demons [demons], or use spells, must be uprooted, so that others can see and fear.
Sex between humans and demons
Demons have a sexual appetite for intercourse with humans. In the Zohar ("Book of Splendor"), the main work of Kabbalah, any contamination of semen results in the birth of Demons, including sexual intercourse with Demons from night terrors, such aslilith. Demons in male human form (incubi) prey on women, while demons in female form (succubi) prey on men. In Christianity, the possibility of having sexual relations with demons was denied before the 12th century. But as the Inquisition gained momentum, sexual relations with demons became a focus of interest in the 14th century. In particular, witches and other heretics, enemies of the Church, were said not only to have sexual relations with demons, but also to copulate wildly and frequently with them, especially on Saturdays, and to worship them in their rites. In many cases, the distinction between the Devil himself and the Demons was blurred.
The inquisitors wrote a lot about demonic sex. Sex with demons was portrayed as unpleasant and painful. Sometimes demons appeared to people in the form of spouses or lovers. After copulation, they revealed their true identities and blackmailed the victims into continuing the sexual relationship.
Incubi, male demons, were especially attracted to women with beautiful hair, young virgins, chaste widows, and all "devoted" women. The nuns were among the most vulnerable and could be disturbed both in the confessional and in bed. Although most women were forced to have sex by incubi, it was believed that some women willingly submitted and even enjoyed the act. The incubi had huge phalli, sometimes made of horns or covered in scales, and ejaculated icy semen. When they appeared as Demons and not human impostors, they were described as ugly, hairy, and smelly.
Incubi were believed to have the ability to impregnate women. They did not have their own semen, but collected it from men in nocturnal emissions, masturbation, or intercourse disguised as succubi. The demons saved the semen and later used it on one of their victims. The resulting children were considered descendants of the man who unknowingly provided the semen; some horror stories said that the children were half human and half beast.
In a small number of cases, claims of sexual abuse by incubi have been dismissed as products of women's melancholy or vivid imagination. False pregnancies resulting from this state were attributed to flatulence.
The wild copulation between witches and demons was lamented in thefuze(1486), who pointed out that "in veryIncubusdemons used to infest women against their will [but] modern witches... willingly embrace this most filthy and wretched servitude." Some incubi served as familiars to witches, who sent them to torment specific individuals.
Since witches were expected to have sex with incubi, many accused witches were tortured until they confessed to the crime (see Torture). In 1485, the Inquisitor of Como sent 41 of these women to death at the stake. His "confessions" were corroborated, incredibly, by eyewitness accounts, as well as hearsay "and the testimony of credible witnesses."
Incubi were believed to always be visible to witches, but only occasionally to others, including victims. There are reports of people observed at the height of passion with unseen partners. Husbands, however, could see incubi copulating with their wives, who they thought were other men.
Succubuses could appear in the flesh as beautiful, voluptuous women (perhaps a hint of masculine fantasies). They often visited men in their sleep, especially men who slept alone, and their sexual activities caused erotic dreams and nocturnal emissions.
Succubi were not as common as incubi. Due to the inherent evil of women, from the point of view of Christianity, women were morally weak and therefore more licentious than men. If a man were attacked by atogetherIt probably wasn't his fault.
The very act of making love to a succubus was often described as going into an ice cave. There are reports of men being forced to perform cunnilingus on succubi, whose vaginas leaked urine, dung and other juices, and foul odors.
Succubi appeared frequently in witch trial records. Men accused of witchcraft were sometimes tortured until they confessed to having sex with demons, among other diabolical crimes. In 1468, in Bologna, Italy, a man was executed for allegedly running a succubi brothel.
The church prescribed five ways to get rid of incubi and succubi:
1) make a Sacramental Confession;
2) make the sign of the cross;
3) recite the Hail Mary;
4) move to another house or city; Y
5) by the excommunication of the Devil by holy men.
Sometimes the Our Father worked, as well as a sprinkling of holy water.
It should be noted that cases of sexual abuse by demons did not disappear with the witch hunts; they continue to be reported to the present, often in connection with poltergeist activities and Possession. For example, Robert Curran's The Haunted (1988) tells the story of a family in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, who are said to have been tormented by a hideous demon for several years. The Demon manifested itself in various forms, including a witch with long shaggy white hair, scaly skin, and vampire fangs, who sexually abused her husband. (See Nightmare).
Demons in contemporary witchcraft
Demons are not courted or worshiped in contemporary Wicca andPaganism. The existence of negative energies is recognized.
Demons in Ceremonial Magic
Demons are powerful intelligences that can be summoned and controlled in rituals along with god forms, elementals, angels, planetary and zodiacal spirits, and thought forms. Grimoires provide detailed instructions for conjuring and controlling demons. Demons are dangerous; therefore, the magician must be careful.
The Hierarchies and Functions of Demons
Demons have been catalogued, ranked, and ranked from at least 100-400, during which time theSolomon's testamentappeared, describing Solomon's magic ring to command the Djinn, and listing the names and functions of various Hebrew, Greek, Assyrian, Babylonian, Egyptian, and perhaps Persian demons. Christian demonologists of the 16th and 17th centuries categorized demons into hierarchies of hell and assigned them attributes and duties, including embassies to various nations. Johann Weyer, who devised the more complex hierarchy, estimated that there were 7,405,926 demons serving 72 princes. Ceremonial magical grimoires also provide their own hierarchies. Some of the main Demons important for witchcraft cases are:
The demon of lust, jealousy, anger and revenge. Its main goals are to prevent sexual relations between husband and wife, destroy new marriages, and force husbands to commit adultery. He is also one of the main demons involved in possession. Throughout history, it has been considered one of Satan's most evil hellish demons. He is usually depicted as having three heads, those of an ogre, a ram, and a bull, all sexually licentious creatures; have crow's feet, another sexually aggressive creature; and having wings. He rides a dragon and spits fire.
asmodeoIt has its roots in ancient Persia. He is identified with the Demon Aeshma, one of the seven archangels in Persian mythology. The Hebrews absorbed him into their mythology, where he achieved the highest status and power of all the demons in Hebrew legends. According to Asmodeus, demon of lust and anger of the Hebrews, he is the son of Naamah and Shamdon. He was part of the Seraphim, the highest order of angels, but he fell out of favor. In other Hebrew legends, he is associated with or is the husband of Lilith, the demon queen of lust. He is sometimes said to be the son of Lilith and Adam.
Asmodeus migrated to the Christian tradition, becoming one of the main agents of the Devil's provocation. It was said that witches worshiped it, and wizards and sorcerers tried to conjure it to attack enemies. The grimoires advise anyone seeking an audience with Asmodeus to summon him bareheaded out of respect. Weyer said that Asmodeus also ruled the gambling houses. He was one of the infernal agents blamed for the obscene sexual possession of the Louviers nuns in 17th century France.
A male demon who evolved from the ancient Phoenician mother goddess of fertility, Astarte or Ashtoreth. In the male incarnation he has little to do with the sexual nature of man. He is a science teacher and keeper of the secrets of the past, present and future and is invoked in necromantic divination rituals. He appears as an angel in human form, ugly to some and beautiful to others. However, he possesses a powerful stench. Weyer said that Astaroth was a Grand Duke of Hell and commanded 40 legions of demons. Astaroth is listed as one of the three supreme evil demons, withBeelzebuband Lucifer, in Grimoire Verum and Grand Grimoire, dating from the 18th century.
The Devil is said to instigate cases of demonic possession, most notably that of the nuns of Loudun in France in the 16th century. The nuns accused a priest, priestGrandier Urbano, to cause its possession. At Grandier's trial, a handwritten "confession" detailing his pact with the devil was produced, witnessed and signed by Astaroth and several other demons.
Many lesser deities of ancient Syria and Persia bore this name, which means "the lord" (from the Hebrew bd'al), but the greater Baal was an agricultural and fertility deity of Canaan. The son of El, the Supreme God of Canaan, Baal was the lord of life and ruled the death-rebirth cycle. He got involved in battle with Mot ("death") and was killed and sent to the underworld. The crops dried up, until Baal's sister, Anat, the goddess of love, found his body and gave it a proper burial. The Canaanites worshiped Baal by sacrificing children at the stake. Like the Demon in Christianity, Baal had three heads, with a cat's head and a frog's head on either side of his human head. He transmitted visibility and wisdom.
Known as the "Lord of the Flies", Beelzebub was the Prince of Demons in Hebrew belief at the time of Jesus. The Pharisees accused Christ of exorcising demons in the name of Beelzebub. In medieval times, Beelzebub was considered a demon of great power. A sorcerer conjured it at his own risk of death by stroke or strangulation; once conjured, the Demon was difficult to banish. When he manifested, he was like a giant ugly fly.
Beelzebub was said to rule over the witches' Sabbaths. The witches denied Christ in his name and sang it as they danced. There are many stories of his copulation with witches in wild orgies; to do this, he apparently appeared in a form other than a fly.
Beelzebub was one of the demons charged with cases of possession by the nuns of Loudun and Aix-en-Provence in 17th-century France, forcing the nuns to behave lewdly (see Aix-en-Provence possessions). provence).
One of Satan's most important and evil demons, who has a deceptively beautiful appearance and a soft voice, but is full of treachery, recklessness, and lies. He is dedicated to creating evil and guilt in humanity, especially in the form of sexual perversions, fornication, and lust.
Belial's name probably comes from the Hebrew phrase beli ya'al, meaning "worthless". The ancient Hebrews believed that Belial was the next angel created after Lucifer and that he was evil from the beginning, being one of the first to rebel against God. After he fell from the sky, he became the embodiment of evil.
Weyer said that Belial commanded 80 demon legions (with 6,666 demons per legion) and served as an infernal ambassador to Turkey. The magicians of the time believed that sacrifices and offerings were necessary to invoke it. Belial was known for breaking his promises to wizards, but those who managed to gain his true favor were richly rewarded.
Belial's name is sometimes used as a synonym for Satan or theantechrist. In the Old Testament, the phrase "sons of Belial" refers to futility and recklessness. Belial is also known as Beliar.
In Latin, his name means "light bearer" and was originally associated with Venus, the morning star. His rebellion against God caused him and his followers to be thrown out of heaven. The fallen angels lost their beauty and power and turned into "black devils". The name "Lucifer" was sometimes applied to Christ, as the bearer of light, but in the Middle Ages both "Lucifer" and "Satan" were used as names for the Devil. Lucifer could apply to the Devil in his pre-fall or post-fall state. In the demonic hierarchies, Lucifer is the emperor of hell and is above Satan, one of his lieutenants (positions and distinctions not made in theology). When he is released, he appears as a beautiful child. Lucifer was said to rule over Europeans and Asians.
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Demon A lesser spirit that can be summoned in Magic. Demons are generally considered malevolent or evil, in contrast to angels, who are considered benevolent. Like the angels, the demons are innumerable. Demons are undisciplined; wizards must force them to obey orders for service. Grimoires provide names, duties, seals, incantations, and rituals for summoning and controlling demons. They are especially useful in divination, finding lost treasure, and casting spells. When summoned, the Demons take the form of a magic triangle, a safe boundary from which they cannot threaten the wizard, who is protected by a magic circle. Western concepts of demons have evolved from various sources. Greek DaimonES are good and evil according to their inherent nature and include a wide range of beings, from spirits to spirits of the dead to gods. The Christian church has condemned as evil all pagan spirits whose purpose is to ruin souls so that they can be condemned to hell. Jewish demonologies evolved with influences from Babylonian, Persian, and Egyptian tradition. In Talmudic lore, demons are omnipresent enemies who pose a constant danger to humanity. They were created by God on the first eve of Saturday at sunset. Twilight fell before God finished them off, and therefore they have no bodies. They have wings and exist between humans and angels, roughly between Earth and the moon, and are less powerful than angels. They frequent uninhabited and dirty places, and once they join a person or family, bad luck follows. In the Middle Ages, rabbinic writings had elaborated on Demons, expanding on their classes and duties. In Christianity, demons are relentlessly evil and are the minions of Satan the devil. They live in hell, but can roam the world actively seeking souls to subvert. In the late New Testament period, demons were synonymous with fallen angels, one third of the heavenly host expelled from heaven along with Lucifer (later identified as Satan) who descended into hell. As Christianity spread, the ranks of demons increased to include the gods and demons of ancient Near Eastern and Jewish traditions, all pagan deities, and nature spirits. During the Inquisition, demons were especially associated with witches, who were also considered agents of the devil. Much has been written about the specific ways that demons tormented humans, especially through sexual assault. Male demons (incubi) and female demons (succubi) were believed to visit people in their beds at night to copulate with them. The monstrous births were explained as products of the relationship between humans and demons. Witches, as well as alchemists and other adepts, were said to have demons as familiars.
- Demonology Glossary
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- GUILEY, Rosemary Ellen. The Encyclopedia of Witches and Witchcraft. Rvdo. edition New York: Facts On File, 1989.
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- Thomas, Keith. Religion and the decline of magic. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1971.
- Trachtenberg, Joshua. Jewish Magic and Superstition: A Study in Folk Religion. New York: Berhman House of the Jewish Book, 1939.