Possession versus mental illness

The way to determine whether someone is mentally ill or possessed by an evil entity according to the church.



What percentage of Catholic priests would you say perform exorcisms? Not a job I want.


There are 2 or 3 hundred allowed to do so the the Catholic church in the United States. There will be thousands in the world officially allowed to perform them…many non Catholic churches have exorcists too. The Catholics (I’m not) have to go on a special training course with pass and fail. …


Is there a non-video version of this?

If you baptize a cat, it may well turn into an exorcism.


Any religion or cult or folk religion or whatever that believes in demons will have different ways to determine if demons are present, some just say that we know it when we now it.

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Then you might find this article interesting.

If you think you are demon-possessed and see a therapist, you might be mentally ill.
If you think you are demon-possessed and see an exorcist, you are definitely mentally ill.


Interesting. Not sure if the first or third ones are foolproof, but the second one sounds solid. And this guy doesn’t come across as a nutter himself.

My dad worked with psychiatric patients and he was completely convinced that some of them were possessed (although he’s from a culture that takes such things as ‘normal’). Also met a girl once who believed she had accidentally sold her soul to Satan and she was beyond distressed by it. Hard to tell if that sort of thing is one of those ‘not mutually exclusive’ cases he mentions. The thing is, if you actually were possessed (assuming such a thing is possible), you’d be pretty much guaranteed to go nuts as a result, if you weren’t already. Hard to imagine someone being possessed and being totally OK about that - turning up to work and birthday parties and whatnot having normal conversations in his Zuul voice.

Source? Do you have a paper for this?


Yes, I very much like his statement that mental illness and possession are not necessarily mutually exclusive. It is my belief that to be healthy then that includes the health of body , mind and spirit. As Jesus said “Man cannot live on bread and water alone.”


Sheesh, what a hateful stereotype! The nice, calm spirits out there are deeply offended (but they’re too nice to make a fuss about it). Just sayin’. :ghost:

A self destructive demon? Interesting.

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Why would a demon encourage its host to see an exorcist ? They might well encourage the host to see a psychiatrist who would not perform an exorcism but instead provide psychiatric drugs, Lithium, benzodiazepines etc. The problem maybe of a spiritual nature. If so then a psychotherapist might be a better answer. Religion has its role in helping the human spirit. Religion can cure or help depression, anxiety , psychosomatic illnesses , alcoholism, drug addiction.
Psychiatrists and religion or spiritual belief both have a role in mental health.
Good health includes mental physical and spiritual.

Nonsense. The world has countless healthy people who have no interest in spirituality and unhealthy people who do.


Like you ? :joy:

Still kicking!

Well for someone who has no interest in spirituality you sure seem to be an eager participant in the religious threads. You definitely have an interest in it. Maybe that’s why you’re still kicking.

I wouldn’t but when you try to strip away my health I feel duty bound to!

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Define “spiritual.”

AA a spiritual recovery program for alcoholics.

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I know a few people who have maintained sobriety by working through AA steps.

I know of a few million more who use it as a crutch for alcoholism. So yeah, just like church!

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