Why does exorcism work in other religions?


Recently, I was thinking about how the fact that Satan and demons seem to fear the name of Jesus was yet again another proof that Christ is indeed God and that Christianity is the truth, and then I realized that other religions also perform exorcism, like for example in Islam, and they seemingly obtain the same results as catholic exorcism by reading certain surah etc.

So I was wondering how could we explain this? How come demons seems to run when they hear Jesus’ name as well as when they hear the Quran which, as far as I’m concerned, is nothing but human fabrication?

1 Like

Since I am not a moslem, perhaps you could kindly give example of the verses translation of the prayers they use for exorcism?

If I am not mistaken one of the prayer is saying that there is only one God. That is actually a similarity to the Torah teaching.

Probably that explains why it can be used for exorcism.

1 Like

Well they seem to use surah 1, 113 and 114 which indeed say things like “I seek refuge in the god of humankind” and insist on the unicity of God, but it still seems weird to me that this would actually work. Of course it’s close to impossible to know if the claims they make about it are real but I can’t seem to find any proper investigation on the subject.

True, which is why I was looking for some serious, unbiased investigation on this topic but can’t seem to find any.

Well, there are multiple possible reasons for this, most of which have likely occurred to you. The four obvious ones seem to be:

  1. That, while Christianity is the “correct” religion, God reacts to sincere appeals from all of His children, and therefore will sometimes assist those in need regardless of their religion;
  2. That all (or many) religions have a sufficient claim to correctness such that their various rituals are effective;
  3. That no exorcisms are actually effective, and what is happening is something else (psychology, fraud, or whatever), regardless of the religion.
  4. That exorcisms by Christians are effective, but those of other religions are something else (psychology, fraud or whatever).

I think many Catholics would probably go with 4, while others would say 1, and still others would go with 3. (not necessarily in that order). I don’t think most Catholics would agree with 2, but there are probably a few.

What do you think?

1 Like

Actually, I hadn’t thought about those options so thank you. I’d tend to think 1 and 4 are the most probable reasons why those exorcisms might work. What do you think?

38 And John answered him, saying, Master, we saw one casting out devils in thy name, and he followeth not us: and we forbad him, because he followeth not us. 39But Jesus said, Forbid him not: for there is no man which shall do a miracle in my name, that can lightly speak evil of me. 40For he that is not against us is on our part. 41For whosoever shall give you a cup of water to drink in my name, because ye belong to Christ, verily I say unto you, he shall not lose his reward.

If you view Christ as being analogous to God you can view number one on that list above as a good answer to the question. I’d also say number four applies to exorcisms in many cases in all religions and that Catholicism is generally nowadays very, very cautious about starting the process of. However, if you look at how some Christian groups use exorcisms you may be less than impressed. Their was pastor from an African Church arrested in this part of London for beating a boy and trying to drive demons out. The boy was actually suffering from a form of epilepsy in which seizures are very recurrent and convulsive and he left the kid with brain damage. It is why the Church insists medical reasons for behaviour be investigated with regards to these matters.

1 Like

I tend to think that most exorcisms fall under 3, but for those that don’t, I would go with some form of 1.

I’d say three would probably cover a lot of them as well yes and that people are often using religion in place of medication to an extent in those cases.

1 Like

Actually before the Catholic Church authorizes the use of the rite of exorcism all other plausible explanations have to have been exhausted.
Only then the Bishop will authorize it. Precisely to minimize the possibility of fraud or natural causes.


You answered your own questions. Seemingly - no proof.

Why, then, did Mary appear to atheists, Muslims, Orthodox and Catholics all together in Zeitoun, Egypt, since you are dismissive of Islam? In other apparitions, she has been selectively visible to a few; in Zeitoun she seemed to be visible to many if not to all who chose to go to the site, including those I mentioned.

Rather false.

You cannot do this in other religions, simply because they don’t believe TRULY in Jesus as Messiah and Son of God.

There are cases of ‘other people’ trying to deal with demons in Bible. None of them went well. Here’s an example from Acts 19:13-17

Then certain of the vagabond Jews, exorcists, took upon them to call over them which had evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus, saying, We adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preacheth.

And there were seven sons of one Sceva, a Jew, and chief of the priests, which did so.

And the evil spirit answered and said, Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are ye?

And the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, and overcame them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.

And this was known to all the Jews and Greeks also dwelling at Ephesus; and fear fell on them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified.

‏‏‎ ‎Ergo, don’t try it at home.
‏‏‎ ‎
‏‏‎ ‎
The Catechism of the Catholic Church states: "When the Church asks publicly and authoritatively in the name of Jesus Christ that a person or object be protected against the power of the Evil One and withdrawn from his dominion, it is called exorcism."
‏‏‎ ‎
Sorry but only Exorcist performing Rite of Exorcism can do this.

Exorcist appointed by Vatican.

The Introduction to Exorcisms and Related Supplications further directs that the priest “has been specifically prepared for this office”

1 Like
DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.