Why do christians (non-catholics) believe everything is caused by demons and bad spirits?

Almost all of my Christian (non-Catholic) friends believe that everything is caused by demons/spirits, why is that? I have a Pentecostal friend that believes EVERYTHING is caused by demons, like EVERYTHING. They think gay people are possessed, depressed people are possessed, angry people are possessed, when you have a headache, or when you have a bad dream, that you are possessed (NOT KIDDING). I know that the devil is all around us, tempting us and causing terrible things to happen, but really? They even believe that “aliens” in space ships are demons. OH and also, why do Pentecostal/other non catholic churches, perform exorcisms on a daily basis? It seems like they perform exorcisms for everything. I just find it very odd that you would perform exorcisms on someone that is mentally ill…or sad, lonely, etc. I know demonic oppressions exist and are very real but not everything is caused by them right? Thank you all and God bless!. :eek:

I have no idea why some people believe that. Having said that, the Bible records Jesus casting out demons and healing people with physical and mental illnesses. But clearly when Jesus healed the sick, he did not perform an exorcism. In John 9:6 he made mud with dirt and spit and healed the blind man’s eyes through “anointing”, not through exorcism. If most illnesses were caused by demons, then modern medicine (like advil, aspirin, antibiotics, etc.) would not work.

I read a book once called “They Shall Expel Demons” that was about exorcisms that I found really fascinating until about halfway through where the author (who was not Catholic) described an exorcism he was performing and he demanded of the poor possessed woman the name of the demon possessing her (as knowledge of a demon’s true name allegedly gives you power over it). Anyway, the author was a pretty good story teller and was doing a really good job at drawing out the tension and I’m reading along waiting for her to name Molech or Legion or something when she says with a shuddering voice, “My name is … nicotine!” :doh2: He went on a bit to describe other “demons” expelled like “pornography” or “alcohol” that’s when I tossed the book away in disgust. Man, talk about time I’ll never be able to get back, what a waste. :ouch:

I personally believe that when everything is the result of possession (I imagine Pentecostal teenagers shouting “I cast thee out!” every time they pop a zit) it simply trivializes the damaging potential of demonic influence. This is undoubtedly just fine with the demons as it tends to lower our defenses to their influence. Sometimes a headache is just a headache.

Why do christians (non-catholics) believe everything is caused by demons and bad spirits?

Paint with a broad brush, much…?

Having been raised Protestant (& really, knowing very few Catholics until I met my husband 11 years ago), I can say I know no Christian who fits that description. And Pentecostals are a very small percent of the non-Catholic population; perhaps you might want to expand your circle of friends & acquaintances…? Just sayin.

Directory on popular piety and the liturgy

  1. Popular devotion to the Holy Angels, which is legitimate and good, can, however, also give rise to possible deviations:

when, as sometimes can happen, the faithful are taken by the idea that the world is subject to demiurgical struggles, or an incessant battle between good and evil spirits, or Angels and daemons, in which man is left at the mercy of superior forces and over which he is helpless; such cosmologies bear little relation to the true Gospel vision of the struggle to overcome the Devil, which requires moral commitment, a fundamental option for the Gospel, humility and prayer;

when the daily events of life, which have nothing or little to do with our progressive maturing on the journey towards Christ are read schematically or simplistically, indeed childishly, so as to ascribe all setbacks to the Devil and all success to the Guardian Angels. The practice of assigning names to the Holy Angels should be discouraged, except in the cases of Gabriel, Raphael and Michael whose names are contained in Holy Scripture.

I think the Church encourages a happy medium between ascribing everything to good/evil spirits and ascribing nothing to them. The former attitude may just be a reactionary way to balance the pagan/atheist culture that surrounds us and takes the latter position. It’s an impoverished culture that does not recognize that the hand of God is upon everything we do.

I personally do not believe in “luck” or “coincidence” or “accident”. Our mere human wills and actions make up the daily struggles of life, but we are still touched by the sovereign power of God and the intercession of the Communion of the Saints. It is our duty to praise and bless God in good times and in bad. I don’t worry overmuch about demons and evil spirits. While I know they are always with us, I take comfort and refuge under God’s wings, always and everywhere.

The OP may be over-generalizing, but I think there is some substance to his (?) post.

I spent my first twenty-two years as a Protestant, in a wide variety of denominations. The Anglicans and other traditional communities do not have this so much within their teachings, but it is more prevalent in practice, in small prayer groups. In more recent communities - charismatic and Pentecostal - it is rife to attribute everything harmful to “spirits” and “demons” - and even things which they just don’t like, such as alternative interpretations of the bible.

As to why, I suggest there are two reasons. Firstly, it give them some sense of power (not necessarily in a bad sense) to be able to identify the spirit, and then “expel” it. Very often, it also gives hope to people in a hopeless situation. Secondly, it simplifies things when everything that troubles you is caused by Satan. Oh, and thirdly - of course evil spirits are real, and do account for much that is harmful.

Still, thanks for the reminder that this may not be as prevalent as it appears to some of us. I’ll respect your own experience and perspective.

Whose to say all those people back then were wrong? think about it, the times we live in today, God, religion is pushed out more and more, science is determined to prove God does not even exist, so its only logical, in times like these, to blame things on demons or evil spirits should be considered nonsense. Modern science explains all kinds of things to society today that takes God completely out of the equation.

We need to be careful in not be fooled by ‘modern science’, God and the spiritual realm are VERY real.

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