The Malicious Encounter
Almost from the inception of my late website, readers have written asking for more information on two very distinct categories. The first, but not necessarily the largest, concerns what an individual living in an urban environment might do to become more involved and adept at magick and shamanism. The second question, and the subject of this page is, “How do ordinary people either prevent, halt, or cope with malicious ‘demonic’ attacks?” Several readers have indicated that their situation is ongoing and that it actually involves physical bites, scratches, bruises, and other physical ailments. In most cases, the readers’ messages express an almost tangible horror and frustration at their situation. The psychological trauma is readily apparent. These strange incidents are not confined to primitive third world countries still steeped in voodoo and witchcraft. As a result, the distinction between superstition and reality is breaking down, even in the conservative mind. Modern science and mainstream religion, once again, have failed to come up with the answers or solutions to our present dilemma. We are being forced to acknowledge a world outside our own, much more aligned with myth and superstition than we might feel comfortable admitting. With so much demonic activity afoot, we can no longer stick our modern, educated heads in the sand, and pretend that whatever it is out there can’t see us. After all, if we don’t believe in it, it can’t hurt us, right?
I found the following news article about an ongoing demonic attack in Africa both very unusual and classic at the same time. The description of the victim’s state of mind and physical condition are classic to one particular form of attack. On Thursday, July 19th, 2001, the BBC News reported the following article, relating some very classic aspects of a malicious attack.
By Ally Saleh in Zanzibar
Fear has struck residents of the Zanzibar Islands after rumors of the re-emergence of a sexually voracious ghost that attacks people while they sleep in their beds at night.
Zanzibaris are now refusing to sleep in their houses, as they believe that it only preys on people in the comfort of their own beds.
The ghost or genie goes by the name of Popo Bawa, and people believe that it sodomizes its victims, most of whom are men.
In the latest panic, he is said to be striking in the north of Zanzibar Island, as well as in central Pemba.
People claim that his presence in the house is revealed by an acrid smell and a puff of smoke. Victims then speak of being in a trance or “dream-like” state as they are molested. And so the story goes, if they do not reveal what has happened, then Popo Bawa will strike the next night.
Popo Bawa is reported to have previously terrorized the island’s residents in 1995 and 2000. Another ghost, known for attacking children, was reported to have terrorized the islands for six months.
The question then remains,”What, if anything, can be done about malicious hauntings and possessions”?
Let me begin by stating that not every possession or haunting is negative or malicious. Many individuals throughout the ages have displayed paranormal gifts that they attribute to a spirit possession, such as channeling (i.e. Edgar Cayce). I, myself, by clinical definition, am probably ‘possessed’. I have both conscious and unconscious interface with six dis-incarnate beings almost constantly. In cases such as mine, the relationship is mutually acceptable and advantageous. Prior to the advent of modern science and religion, cultures relied on medicine men, sorcerers, and shamans who claimed these otherworld contacts as their source of wisdom and power. Many of the less westernized cultures around the world still rely on such individuals. For this reason, it is important to find out the intention of the entity haunting or in possession.
Many physical locations, including dwellings, are haunted by “lost” or “Earth-bound” spirits, who have failed to move beyond the physical plane for some unfortunate reason. Some hauntings that may at first appear vicious are etheric recordings of highly charged events, such as murders, which occurred at that location. When such hauntings occur, they do not occur in real time (as if they are just now occurring). The event or apparition which you are experiencing is actually a recording of an event so charged with emotional energy that it created a memory, if you will, of that event upon the magnetic ethers of that specific place. The recording may be complete with every aspect of the five senses, as well as the most minute detail of horrifying emotion. It is so real that you believe that you are actually experiencing it. It is most likely activated by a change or fluctuation within the electro-magnetic field created by your presence within the field where the recording is contained. But it is not real or malicious, at least within the latter time frame that you are experiencing it. It is simply like watching a really good horror movie.
Earth-bound spirits are highly territorial and most hauntings are primarily location specific. Hostile or aggressive Earth-bound spirits will often interact with those of us who come into their presence as if we are intruders, usually because some worldly attachment that they had prior to their death really does give them a kind of first rights. If you encounter a really aggressive, hostile Earth-bound spirit, evacuate the premises immediately. In any case of unfriendly spiritual encounter, seek immediate professional help. Let me explain by way of a real experience.
In Medford, NJ, I was called to a single dwelling home occupied by a middle-aged single woman living alone. This house was haunted by an apparition of an old man, and a myriad of loud and unexplained noises which kept the woman unsettled constantly. No open acts of personal aggression were present. Her sleep, as you can imagine, was broken and restless. I and my assistant, my wife, arrived at the
home late one evening. Upon arrival, everything appeared very quiet, but the tour of the house, and particularly the basement, indicated that the spirit in this house was very much present, aware and biding his time. Several areas of the house feel very cold, while other areas raised goose bumps on my skin as I passed through. The feel of something wrong or out-of-place pervaded the house. I went to work by entering a Shamanic, or twilight, consciousness, and set out to contact the spirit. That was not difficult! Upon contact, I was informed that he was the deceased former owner, and a widower. During his life, he had been, according to him, a very shrewd coin dealer and had amassed a significant collection of valuable and rare coins. To protect his investment, he had put a hidden vault in the wall behind the pegboard backstand of a very heavy work station in the basement. The problem seemed to be that someone had “stolen” his collection and now there was an “unknown intruder” in his house, and he was angry. As in many cases, the old man had no knowledge or recollection of his death at all.
As it turned out, the woman was aware of the now empty vault that the deceased man’s adult children had cleaned out at his death. Oddly enough, she semed somewhat familiar with this man’s family, including the history of the ghost’s mortal life as well.
The woman now living in the house was an airline stewardess. She had coffee cans full of useless coins from around the world. She was instructed to fill the now empty bank bags from the vault full of these foreign coins and close, lock and forget about the vault. In a later phone call, she said that she had followed my instructions to the letter and the problem was resolved without further apparition or noises.
Demons, or malicious spirits, are an entirely different story. Demons are not territorial, and strike at will. However, demons are not arbitrary in their patterns. Demons choose their victims by very specific criteria. One of the primary criteria is vulnerability. A victim’s vulnerability can include such things as guilt, depression, fear, hopelessness, anger, loneliness, cultural background, belief system, occult associations, etc., which may carry a negative energy.
It is my experience that these demonic entities are of one of two types:
- The classic demon who desperately desires a mortal body, and will take any body that a weak or absent owner will relinquish. This category may also include Earth-bound spirits.
- The demon that feeds off of strong emotional energy, usually negative energy. I believe that, by far, this category outweighs the first.
In my research for this page, I found that most individuals who become involved with malicious possessions and hauntings professionally, including priests and excorcists believe the actual occurrence of deliberate, malicious attacks are minimal, but they do occur. However, it has been my experience that these incidents are more prevalent than is believed, and are increasing.
I can not overstate the value of using common sense and good judgment in dealing with extra-ordinary situations, particularly as it relates to ghosts, demons, and entities. These beings are real. Many of them have very real physical capabilities.
Any being sufficiently empowered to manifest in this plane is a potential threat. I realize that we had fun as children, frightening one another with ghost stories until we were afraid to be in the dark at night. And now as adults, I understand the adrenaline rush that comes with the prospect of staying in a haunted house or a face-to-face encounter with a ghost. Thats all cool! But If you do not exercise extreme caution, fun could quickly turn to tragedy.
By way of example:
One afternoon I was visited by several young people, I would guess their age to be 22-25 years old, who were quite obviously terrified. We visited for quite some time. The source of their trouble seemed to revolve around a late night dare to visit a haunted house. Not just any haunted house, but the world-
famous Whaley House in Old Town San Diego. The Whaley House is considered to be one of the most actively haunted houses in the world! They did, in fact, visit the house well after mid-night. According to their story, they arrived at the house and walked around, peeking in the windows and generally having a great time, when one of them noticed an old woman standing on the second story balcony staring off toward the horizon. They hid in some bushes around a tree below the balcony and watched. Suddenly, she looked straight down at them and gradually began to float directly toward them. They fled for the car and locked the doors. The car wouldn’t start. The old woman came to the car and glared in at each of them. They said she stared at them “what seemed like forever”. They said her glare was angry and nasty, like nothing they had ever experienced, and they were trapped. After what seemed like forever, she slowly faded away. The car then started and they left.
But the story did not end there. Deep inside, they each felt that the old woman had put something inside them. They couldn’t describe it, but the feeling of the experience would not diminish, and the old woman would not go away. She was in them. They described horrible nightmares, daylight apparitions, and a sense of doom prevailed around them.
REMEDY: As a trained shaman, I tend to look at situations a little differently than priests and clergy of other religions. It is my belief that every thing has a right to exist, and disincarnate beings’lives are as valid as our own. Our human interpretation of their existence is usually based on our own limited perception of that existence, which is seldom complete or valid. The very words that we use to name things implies much of our feeling about them. For example, we call one spiritual being an angel, while another we call a demon. We seldom take into consideration anything but our own human aspect.
We might easily fail to take into consideration that these young people were trespassing on private property well after midnight with mischief in mind. They approached the house, looked into the windows, ran through the lawn, etc. If this home was occupied by a normal family, most likely the police would be called. Why should our behavior differ from one situation to another? The young people’s behavior was abhorrent. Whether they were chased away by a ghost or a mortal human being is irrelevant.
I admonished the young people about respect and proper behavior. They were instructed to send a clear mental message to the woman indicating that they were going to jointly return to the house, bringing gifts of flowers and candy to the house, and begging the forgiveness of the old woman for their disrespect and misconduct. They were instructed that if they were allowed to approach the house without incident, that their message had been received and the woman was willing to listen. If not, they would continue until they could. They were to continue this regiment on a regular basis, at their discretion, until such time as their internal feelings returned to normal. This incident ended successfully with the first installment.
This is a classic example of the effects and after-effects of a true malicious haunting. The consequences were not undeserved, but they were unfortunate.
Obviously, not all situations are this simple, but the vast majority really are. Respect, understanding, and cooperation will resolve most spiritual situations much quicker and less painfully than exorcism. We, the mortals, deliberately or inadvertently create most of our own problems by lack of understanding, lack of respect, and our arrogant mortal attitudes. Most frequently, we say, “How dare that ghost occupy my house” or “That evil, vile, malicious demon attack me!” It is my approach in these situations to converse with the demon or spirit, when possible, and determine the reason for the difficulty. I have personally spoken very calmly and effectively with some very ugly spirits that possessed a mortal body, and had a very interesting conversation without threat or hostility. My intent is the same, the spirit is going to leave that mortal body. My methods are different.
I, personally, do not believe in Satan or his hosts as explained in Judeo/Christian beliefs. I do not believe that Satan can influence or overpower you. I do believe that you can leave yourself vulnerable to negative influences. I believe that we give far to much credit to beings and entities of our own devices, rather than accept that man has a very evil, dark side that we hide, not only from society, but even from ourselves. I sincerely believe that many of the things that we encounter are manifestations of our dark side, empowered by our repeated reinforcement of our belief in them. I do believe that there are inter-dimensional beings out there that will prey off of mortals for their needs just as a lion feeds off of an antelope. Lions are not evil, just hungry. That does not negate the fear or horror the prey feels when singled out for the kill. We can be prey to beings that we have no knowledge of or defense against. The average person can only avoid those thoughts and actions that make you the most obvious prey.
When considering self-defense against malicious entities, prevention is your greatest weapon. Be aware of your mental, emotional and psychological state of mind. Long term negative states of mind are an open invitation. We all have bad moments. It’s not the individual thought as much as it is how long and how hard we focus on that thought. Avoid long-term anger or depression. If you need to, see a doctor or seek professional therapy. Avoid thoughts of self-injury or suicide. Do not focus on or invite unknown entities into your life. Do not invite deceased loved ones and relatives back into your life or back to the mortal plane. Do not dwell on demon or ghost-related material, and do not visit haunted places. Do not “play” at witchcraft or the occult. Read, study, and practice with experienced practitioners BEFORE you try it yourself. Remember, we all have different levels of resistance and immunity to spiritual matters, just as we do in mortal matters.
The most commonly accepted method of dealing with malicious possession or haunting within the Judeo-Christian faith is called exorcism. That topic is sufficiently large to warrant a separate treatise, and shall be dealt with on page two of this article, called “Exorcism”.
Again, untrained individuals encountering seemingly malicious entities, by either possession or haunting, should seek professional help immediately!!! Exorcisms should be performed by trained practitioners skilled in dealing with matters of the spirit and dis-incarnate realms. Exorcism can be extremely dangerous. Ministers and priests have brought physical harm, as well as other dire consequences, upon themselves and others by malicious entities that failed to respond to their efforts. Do not attempt an exorcism alone.
Demonology from a non Judeo-Christian Perspective
Among some cultures, ghosts are considered to be responsible for many illnesses and disasters, while among other cultures, like the Haitians, spiritual possession is sought for as a right of passage.
William Howells, in his book “THE HEATHENS” (1962) has described several techniques used around the world for exorcising evil spirits and diseases, such as: “using sweat baths, cathartics, or emetics to flush out the offending spirits; trephining; manipulating and massaging the body; sucking out the disease
object; scraping or sponging the illness out of the body; reciting magical spells, coaxing, or singing songs to lure the spirit away; tempting them to evacuate the body by laying out a sumptuous meal for it; keeping the patient uncomfortable, sometimes by administering beatings, so the spirit will be discontent with the body and want to depart; building a fire under the patient to make it uncomfortably warm for the spirit; placing foul-smelling, overripe fruit near the patient; and scandalizing the demon by having the patient’s naked wife jump over the patient”.
Continuing, Howells writes, “There is considerable evidence to support the belief that trephination among pre-Columbian Peruvians was a supernatural-based method of exorcism. A technique of skull surgery, trephining involved cutting a hole in the skull with a type of small saw or knife known as a trephine. Although the primary reason for the procedure was generally believed to be the physical easing of pressure on the brain, the supernatural reasons for the practice cannot be overlooked.”