The Prince of Darkness

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The PRINCE OF DARKNESS
By Frater F.

The image of a Prince of Darkness, terrifying opponent of gods and men, has existed in the human mind, through countless ages and among numerous nations and races. This image has appeared under many guises and, under many guises it still continues to exist. Such a time honoured and universally held conception might point to the possibility of a demonic presence actually operating in our world. On the other hand, it might merely suggest the existence of some fundamental tendency in the human psyche- the tendency to create an imaginary enemy to explain seemingly insoluble problems.

The “dark enemy” enters into many different religions, and the folklore of all continents. It is important, therefore to know from where we, of the West, inherit our understanding and picture of “him”. Most of us, when we use the term “Devil” to describe this enemy, are not at all certain what we mean by the term or what we believe about it. This applies to those with religious beliefs, as well as to those without them.

The “Prince of Darkness” can also be studied in philosophy, in art and literature, in medicine and psychiatry, and in occultism of every kind. Above all, “he “can be studies in one’s personal experience.

The Devil in Ancient Myth and Jewish Tradition.

A battle between Light and Darkness, between Creation and Destruction was the ancient picture of the Universe as conceived by the human mind from the beginning of recorded time.

Theologians and philosophers have long struggled to define and analyse the meaning of evil.

The idea of universal conflict has been expressed in numerous different ways and has entered the stories and legends of people. Myths describing the conflict belong not only to ancient and profound religious systems, but also to primitive communities of all eras. Their experiences of the harsh forces of nature; that they believed to be infinitely more powerful than themselves, caused them to people their world with evil spirits, who are trying to do them harm. The figures of demons have had a long existence in the human mind. For protection, men would turn to good spirits or, more often, to the greatest of good spirits, whom, they felt, would surely fight for them.

From the earliest times to history, up to and including the present, the problem of how evil could have entered a world created good has been pondered and discussed , dealt in myth and metaphor, in theology and philosophy, and seems to be one of the greatest sources of religious doubt in peoples’ mind today. How can the misery and wickedness to which we can all testify exist in the world made by an all loving God? Exactly what the focal point of evil is, and what its power, and how its existence can be explained, no one knows for sure, but what is certain is that the idea of an enemy of gods and men is very ancient and an all pervasive one.

The concept of the Enemy as known to Western Europe has come to us mainly through the Scriptures of the Jewish people, whose terminology and imagery were influenced by the older civilisations that surrounded them. In particular Babylonian myth concerning the origin of the world and that of the teachings of Zoroaster who was the founder of the Magian System of the Persio-Iranian people. The concept of which was that the natural world emanated from the wise Lord, Ahura Mazda or Ormazd, the primordial Spirit being. His guiding spirit continually willed the good but was restricted by his own twin brother, the evil spirit Ahirman. Ahriman was banished by the good spirit and now lives in Hell, from where he invades the world as the principle of evil, the arch devil. The evil spirit existed in the cosmos from the beginning and has negative creative powers, bringing darkness, filth and death. The good spirit is the essence of truth and law.

The concept of the One Supreme God was also the centre of the Jewish faith, and distinguished the early Hebrew religion from the religions of the neighbouring peoples, with their numerous tribal gods.

In the earliest scriptures, Yahweh was Lord of the Universe, and all happenings good and evil were caused by him. In Isaiah 45.7, written in the six century BC, God says, “I form the Light and create the darkness. I make peace and create evil I the Lord do all things.

Later, it began to be felt that God, the author of all good, should not be described as the cause of evil; there must be a separate cause. Coming into contact with Persian influence during the Babylonian exile the view was formed that evil was increasingly understood to come from an enemy, who opposed God and Man-the Adversary, which is the meaning of Satan.

In the Book of Job, Satan appears as the accuser and tempter of Man, but is still seen as a subject of the World Ruler. He comes before the heavenly court as one of the sons of God and acts under his instructions.

In the Kabbalah, it was said that Yahweh, who was all, contained everything-good and evil. His right hand gave mercy, his left hand, destruction. But the destructive aspect broke way and became known as the Devil.

The Devil of the New Testament and the Church Fathers.

The Christian religion has developed the idea of the Devil more extensively than any other world religion.

This emphasis on the power of the forces of Darkness may have been given such an important place because Christianity was less a religion of metaphysics than a religion of action.

The most powerful description of the Enemy of Man comes from the Epistle of Peter (1 Peter 5:8) “be sober be diligent, because your adversary, the Devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour. Yet it is perhaps Saint Paul who has written a statement about the focus of evil that is impossible to interpret in a symbolic way as a metaphor for human sinfulness “Put on the Whole Armour of God, that ye may be able to stand the wiles of the Devil. For we wrestle not with flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against rulers of darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:12)

In The Apocalypse (The Revelation of St John), the Devil is shown as the Enemy of God. “And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world, he was cast out into the earth and his angels were cast out with him (Revelation 12:9) It is on Revelation 12 that later Christian Theology of Satan’s fall from Heaven and his continual opposition to the Divine Plane is based.

According to Origen, Lucifer and his angels fell through their own free choice. Their motive was pride, aiming to equate themselves with God. They desired to put their own will in the place of God’s will; this was understood to be the basis of sin on every level. Gradually these ideas began to form the traditional teachings on the Devil.

The problem of evil held a central place in St Augustine’s writings. He believed that God allowed evil powers to rule the world, but within His control, as part of the “plot” of the Cosmos. Especially after the horror of the Fall of Rome, in AD 410, St Augustine saw the world as being under the vast power of the Devil, but always he conceived evil to be the result of a definite choice, no creature having been created evil. 

Dualism

This doctrine that god both permits and restricts evil formed part of Pope Gregory’s firm stand against dualism, the belief that there are two independent and equal forces in the universe. The acceptance of this dualism had always been considered a danger to correct development of Christian doctrine. Judaism had come under Persian Zoroastrianism which took shape as an avowedly dualistic religion. However, for Judaism and for Christianity, as strictly monotheistic religions, it was essential to maintain that there was one omnipotent God. There could not be two independent opposing forces.

The dualism in Greek philosophy - the opposition between spirit and matter, and between higher and lower world- also had a pervasive influence on religious thinkers in the first centuries of Christianity. Many Gnostic sects, for instance, regarded the material world as a prison. They believed that sparks of the eternal spiritual light had been imprisoned within the matter of our world. From this conception came the idea of permanent hostility between matter and spirit. Separation of the spiritual from the corporeal, freeing the spirit from the bondage of the flesh, was understood by the Gnostics to be the aim of the religious life. The world of matter was thus considered to be entirely evil. In some Gnostic schools the Old Testament God, who had created our material world, was equated with the Devil; and was the enemy of the loving God of Spirit. They held that, in our world, good and evil powers were at war, and the “world”, the flesh and the Devil were one and the same.

Dualism in Manichaeism, the powerful religious system that spread eastward from Persia in the third century, was yet more emphatic. The good and evil powers were held to be co-eternal and equal, uncreated and infinite. In the Manichean belief, there were two rulers in the universe, and two kingdoms. There was a kingdom of light and a kingdom of darkness, opposed to each other for all eternity. Out of the kingdom of darkness Satan and the demons were born. According to the Manichean myth, God created Primal Man- the original ideal pattern of Man - to fight against Satan.

Satan overcame Primal Man, and robbed him of some particles of light. These he mixed with five elements of the dark world. Out of these mixed elements, God formed our world, in order to deliver the imprisoned light. Satan the supreme ruler of the dark kingdom was identified with matter. The good power was light, clarity: the evil power, darkness, repressed desire. The ruler of the dark kingdom represented the carnal condition of Man. He was the embodiment of evil, because he was supremely irrational, without reason and devoid of all that was spiritual: in fact, he was the Lord of Primordial Chaos

The Devil

As the Manichees took part in religious observances of various peoples among whom they lived, the Manichean Prince of Darkness, ruler of the Dark Kingdom, became closely associated with the Christian idea of the Devil.

In most Gnostic systems, and certainly in Manichaeism, the Devil was the embodiment of the dark forces of ignorance and materiality which forever bar the return of the spirit to its source.

Chaos, the lack or absence of order, has long been held to “belong to the Devil”. On the human scale, “ The devil is the absence of all that is highest and most purified in human beings; absence of religious feeling , absence of vision, absence of the feeling of beauty, absence of awareness of the miraculous(P.D.Ouspensky, Talks with a Devil)

Thomas Aquinas, like Augustine and many other Christian theologians, was strongly influenced by the ideas of the Neo-Platonist. They held that, from God, the All - Perfect being, came all things - angels, humans, animals, plants. inanimate objects, unformed matter. Each step down was a further step down from God, less spiritual, less real, and having less being. The Jewish theosophical system, which claimed to have been transmitted uninterruptedly from the prophets and patriarchs since the creation of the first man, and known from the eleventh and twelfth centuries as the Kabbalah stated that the world universe was produced by a series of emanations from the infinite, unknown God, here termed Ain Soph.The first ten emanations, the Sephiroth, each a triad, produced the next ten, until four worlds were created. Each world being farther removed from the primordial source became ever coarser and less spiritual. The fourth world was known as the World of Action or World of Matter. Where all was subject to change and corruption. Man was formed to inhabit this world as a microcosm of the universe.

His soul’s destiny, after probation on earth, was to return to the infinite source of its being. Creation involves limitation, and this creation, with its necessary imperfection, could not come direct from the Ain Soph, but had to evolve through the medium of the Sephiroth, the intelligences which emanated from the Ain Soph as rays from a luminary. So the cosmos was formed by multiplication and descent.

Thus, in both the Neoplatonic and later Cabalistic system of ideas, there is the conception of a decent. This decent inevitably implies some form of imperfection in the universe. Anything that is not God must lack perfection, and if anything is to grow towards perfection it must be imperfect as it is. So St Thomas wrote, “Evil is the price to be paid for a non-static cosmos”.

In the life of humanity, there can be no goodness without some struggle with the bad. A being that had no possibility of making a wrong choice would be automation, not a human being. If there is any kind of free will in human beings, there has to be the freedom to fall. No person can be good who has nothing to overcome and has overcome nothing. Thus the Christian writers also held the Devil to have an important function. Like St Augustine, St Thomas Aquinas writes of God using the Devil to create ultimate good.

So it would seem that it is impossible to believe in the Devil without believing in God, since a totally “bad universe under the complete power of a totally “bad” being is inconceivable.
The picture of the Devil that we are most accustomed to see is that of a shaggy, goat like creature, with horns and a tail. The goat might be considered to be a useful animal, but the smile of “goats and sheep” had been used in the New Testament to differentiate the faithful followers of Christ from the unfaithful.

Consequently, the numerous pagan gods associated with fertility and reproduction. Therefore with the most carnal aspect of life, were thought to be especially connected with the Devil. Sexuality was the Devil’s domain, not only because sexual temptations were amongst the most powerful, but because earthiness and materiality belonged to him. Therefore, it was not surprising that Pan, the earthiest of all the gods, should seem to be the nearest personification of the Prince of Darkness. In Greek mythology, Pan was the son of Hermes, and was born with horns and a tail, goat’s beard and hooves, and covered with hair.

Hell

The Prince of Darkness was seen as the ruler of the Kingdom of Hell, and his aim and pleasure was, therefore, to drag human souls down to his nether kingdom, where he could oversee their punishments. In the New Testament, there is no word of the Devil being responsible for punishing sinners in Hell. The idea of the Devil ruling over a place of punishment was a relatively late one.

The Kabbalah, which had an important influence on the Christian Church in the Middle Ages, may have contributed to medieval ideas about Hell. The World of Matter, according to the Kabbalah, is also the habitation of evil spirits. The habitations are divided into ten degrees, each lower than the one before. The first two are absence of form and organisation, the third the abode of darkness, but the last seven are the “seven infernal halls”, occupied by the demons who are incarnations of all human vices.. The seven Hells are subdivided into compartments corresponding to every kind of sin, and demons torture the humans who allowed themselves to be led astray.

The Prince of this region of darkness is Samael, the evil spirit, the serpent who seduced Eve.

But of course Hell has been, and still is, understood in numerous ways, though almost always with a sense of retribution. John Scotus Erugena, in the ninth century said Hell was a metaphor, not a locality. Hell was the permanent understanding, after death, that you have got what you want, that is to say you have achieved alienation from God in the fulfilment of your own desires, instead what Gods wants for you, which is your union with him.

Origen, in the fourth century, also contrary to orthodox teaching, had understood the final return of all created things to God to mean absolution even from the Devil. All would return to its original perfection, but, as created intelligences were given freedom of choice, the whole cycle would begin again. The devil could start his work once more. And Origen, too, had his psychological interpretation of Hell. For him, the Devil was epitome of chaos and lack of meaning. So Hell was purposelessness.

Christian writers taught that, though Christ had overcome the Devil. It is necessary to obey his commands to regain the state of blessedness which the devil had destroyed. In the story of the Fall of Man, Satan brought to the world, not only sin, but death - the loss of immortality:

And thus it also becomes understandable that evil can be symbolised as Death, the “existing-no-more-on-the-highest -potential”, and this can only be thought of as “living-no-more”. It would seem that to follow this true immortality it has to be earned. St Augustine said that “this world was a world of soul making”.

Many great problems of existence can only be dealt with through metaphor and analogy, and human intellect, being finite, cannot contemplate them on every level at once. Therefore, it seems that confusions will inevitably arise on trying to clarify these questions. The greatest of all confusions, having probably gathered round the problem of the source of evil.

The Angelic Host

It seems that in all traditions, supernatural beings who act as messengers of the Supreme being are part of religious belief. They are intermediaries between earth and heaven.

In Ezekiel’s vision of the destruction of Jerusalem, there are seven great angels. The number seven is thought to be connected with the seven planetary divinities of the Babylonian religion, the Jews having been in contact with this religion during their exile.

A relationship between planets and angels appears in the cosmologies of many religious systems. Some Gnostic schools, in the centuries following the birth of Christ, gave the seven archangels, as shadow counterparts the seven planetary demons.

In his Celestial Hierarchies, Dionysus the Areopagite compares God to a ray of light proceeding into manifestation. As light descends, it is graded into an Order, a hierarchy, which leads down from the angels to mankind, and, through the natural order, to formless matter.

There were said to be nine choirs of angels because nine names of heavenly powers are mentioned in Holy Scripture; and these nine orders are described by Dionysius: they are Angels, Archangels, Virtues, Powers, Principalities, Dominions, Thrones, Cherubim and Seraphim.

It is clear that the conception of “angels”, in various religious traditions of the world, centres on their function as intermediaries between a transcendent, infinite Being and finite, limited human beings. They have been thought of, metaphorically and literally, as appearances of God in a visual form- a form that human minds are thus able to experience.

In the tradition of Islam, it has been held by some that Man is capable of ascending and becoming, himself an angel. And there is a Christian legend that the thrones in Heaven made vacant by the fallen angels are reserved for the elect among humanity.

Lucifer, in both the Christian and Islamic traditions, was once the most beautiful of all angels, with the special charge to watch over all mankind. His fall, caused by egoism of his self-will, transformed him into the opposite of what he once was. The name of Lucifer, the great fallen angel, the light -bearer, became synonymous with Satan, the adversary, whose watch over men had become the watch for the weakness in them, where suggestion could lead to their destruction.

Nevertheless, the conception of angelic beings, intermediaries between God and man, was essential to the theological concept of a Spirit of Evil, the constant opponent of mankind. For it was from a corrupted angel-intermediary that the Prince of Evil came.

Ritual Magic

In the early centuries, it was accepted that human beings had the possibility of using demons for their own ends, and that by the performance of certain acts and by the reciting of certain words, protection could be gained from these evil spirits. However there has never been a general belief that good spirits could be reached and influenced by rites and ceremonies in at all the same way. Perhaps it was believed that immeasurably greater power was needed to reach “them”, or even that the very pursuit of power was part of the Devil’s domain.

The writers in medieval times who claimed to be magicians would strongly deny that they, in any way, owed allegiance to the Devil. On the contrary, they would declare that the demons had to be controlled and mastered by the magician to do his bidding. These magicians claimed that they would perform no evil deed to gain favour of the Prince of Evil. They said that the powers they sought, and claimed often to have achieved came through the power of God, and that their success depends on the correct use of Divine words, and the Divine name.

From the early centuries onwards, ritual magic in both Jewish and the Christian tradition followed the same pattern. In orders to perform this magic, it was necessary for the magician to undertake a strict preparation, which included a long period of chastity, fasting and prayer. Some of the books explaining the lore of magic maintained that, if the magician was not in a state of grace or he had a conscience that was not completely clear, then the demon could command him instead of the other way round.

Many centuries later, at the end of the nineteenth century, a French occultist and writer Eliphas Levi wrote in his book, Dogme et Rituel de la Haute Magie: Magic, which the men of old denominated the Sanctum Regnum, the Holy Kingdom or the Kingdom of God, Regnum Dei -exists only for kings and priests.

To attain the Sanctum Regnum, in other words the knowledge and power of the Magi; there are four indispensable conditions -an intelligence illuminated by study, an intrepidity which nothing can check, a will which cannot be broken, and a prudence which nothing can corrupt and nothing intoxicate. To Know, To dare. To Will, To keep silence, - such are the four words of a Magus.

So according to this nineteenth -century writer, and according to the medieval specialists on ritual magic, possession of magical powers in which they believed could only be gained by the highest spiritual endeavour.

Pseudo -occultism is rife today - spiritualism of every kind, as well as secret societies playing with witchcraft and Satanism.

The most famous of these in the past was the Order of the Golden Dawn. This society concentrated on the translating and decoding of what they held to be important magical textbooks, such as the “Key of Solomon” and the mystical parts of the Kabbalah, while in its heyday the Golden Dawn had many lodges, and numbered among its members writers such as W.B. Yeats and Algernon Blackwood. But, as seems to be inevitable in this type of society, fierce quarrels broke out between its leaders. Aleister Crowley, whose name later became famous in connection with black magic, joined the Order, and immediately began to use every means possible to take over the leadership of it. When at last the existing leader died, many members of the Order were convinced that Crowley had killed him by the use of magical arts. During their period of dispute, both contestants were said to have harnessed to their service vampires and demons in order to destroy each other.

Crowley lived until 1947, continuing to practise “satanic rituals” and delighting in a reputation for wickedness. He gave himself the title of “The Great Beast”.

Apart from the harm caused by hysterical imagination, many would agree with Eliphas Levi, that it is destructive and dangerous to dabble with forces that are not understood and which could open the way to evil. But the very sense of danger in such practices assumes the possible existence of evil intelligences, external to humanity.

In subsequent and more sceptical times, the belief in an evil being with his subordinate minions, hovering around us and constantly ready to attack, became in general opinion, outmoded and discredited

Devil Worship
The subject of Satanism and Devil-worship is a complicated one because it has, throughout history, been confused with the study of magic, and the two are not entirely the same. The art of magic, as understood in the ancient books, such as the Kabbalah, was always connected with the discovery of hidden laws beyond the plane of ordinary knowledge. -laws of nature and of spirit.

There are in existence today a people, numbering about sixty thousand, who are known as Devil-worshippers -the Yezidis of Kurdistan, Armenia and the Caucasus. They were originally Muslim, but their practised religion has its roots in Old Iranian and Assyrian beliefs, with traces of the teachings of the Manicheans. They worship Satan, as the great Fallen Archangel, now pardoned. Satan, once Lucifer, the creative agent of God, became the author of evil. The Yezidis believe that, now pardoned, he has been given the government of the world and the management of the transmigration of souls. It is known that the expounder of their faith was Sheikh Adi, who lived in the thirteenth century and they have a sacred book, called the Al Yalveh. The Devil of the Yezidis is represented by the peacock, and his name must not be spoken out loud. But it does not seem, from the little that is known about them, that these Devil-worshippers aim to possess unlimited demonic power, as modern “Satanists” are said to do.

The Devil in the Modern World

The writers and philosophers of the nineteenth and early twentieth century’s, like those of the eighteenth, were, in general, full of confidence that Man, as a rational being, would make continuous progress towards self betterment, and evil tendencies would automatically be checked.

In the nineteenth and twentieth century’s, it was not fashionable to consider the problem of evil in terms of an evil power called “the Devil”. Scientific explanations had been found for many of the biological and psychological phenomena that had previously bewildered mankind. Satan, it seemed could be safely ignored.

Western Europe had now entered the secular age. The validity and value of religion, per se. was being questioned more universally than they had ever been before. Charles Darwin’s Origin of Species, published in 1859, was having a growing influence on theological writings and on the current attitude towards religious ideas.

During the first part of the century, the discoveries made in the physical sciences had engendered a popular conception of the universe and its contents as a huge machine, coming into being by chance and continuing to grow by chance. In the era of optimism, the assumption of a lack of conscious purpose in this machine did not present any terrors, since a belief in a general upward evolution still formed the background of Western thought. But the horrors experienced by two world wars and in many types of totalitarian regime that then emerged, and continue to emerge, have clearly revealed what, after millions of years of “human evolution”, human beings are capable of doing to other human beings. It is probably true to say that it is now impossible for the old type of optimistic belief, based on the assurance of inevitable, universal progress towards perfection, to continue. A mechanical universe no longer seems a pleasant place in which to live

But, at the same time, there is a sense, which had not existed in the recent previous decades, of an evil, endangering the world and all humanity. People of the present generation have a strong feeling, as did those in the Middle Ages, that there are vast forces of violence and destruction existing all around them. There is now the added fear of total, universal destruction, through the mismanagement of nuclear power. The baser instincts of human nature do not seem to be in the process of reformation through increased education, as had been generally predicted, nor through the improved economic conditions, as had been forecast. They do not seem to be reformed through changes in systems of government, nor through social revolutions. Fear of violence, treachery and dishonesty from other human beings seems to dominate the subconscious of all people of all nations, hence the danger of war and crime.

The sense of overpowering evil that often seems to prevail in the thought and literature of the modern world -the sense that there is evil on such a scale that is greater than human wickedness may partly be due to certain conditions peculiar to this age: speed of communication, the vast increase in populations, the technical expertise of commercialism on a huge scale, and the ever-increasing velocity of change - all these contribute to a new sense of a new-magnitude of evil. But however it is understood, human delight in destruction for its own sake, witnessed in vandalism and violence; sadistic cruelty seen in the actions of governments and individuals; the ever increasing greed for money; the ruining of other people through the sale of drugs and through sexual degradation; and the vastly increased potential of nuclear power, without any increase in human wisdom to use it properly -all appear as examples of evil so great that they bring back the sense of demonic forces at work in our world.

The two most dangerous influences that now pervade the whole world seem to be the glorification of hatred, and the insidious power of suggestion. These two are intertwined, since it is suggestion that causes people to feel that their hatred of each other is somehow virtuous. Espousing a noble cause is often understood to give the right to hate all people who are antagonistic to that cause, or who simply do not actively support it. Even those who promote world peace are often full of animosity towards those who think they can promote it in a different way. The concept of help to the underprivileged and down trodden is transferred into the concept of class warfare.

In the ancient stories depicting the Arc-Enemy of humankind, he is often described as dropping insidious suggestions into the ears of those whom he is aiming to tempt. It had always been held that it is by suggestion that the Evil Spirit perverts the minds of men, the classic example being the temptation in the Garden of Eden.

Another reason why it is felt that a spirit of evil, however understood, has such power today is because, owing again to modern technological inventions, suggestion can be more universal and more insidious than it has ever been before. Advertising, newspapers, radio and television all can and do impose their suggestions endlessly on human minds. Lies, consciously or unconsciously, can be spread very quickly, and educated and uneducated alike can be influenced in their thoughts and opinions without being actively aware of it. Greed has been a basic human vice throughout recorded time, but today, with all the instruments that are available to serve it; it can have a field day.

Advertisements can continuously suggest new wants and a sense of deprivation if they are not satisfied. Providers of entertainment in all forms can ceaselessly suggest that the public want only the crudest and poorest type of entertainment and almost anything is acceptable provides it makes money. All these suggestions come, of course, through the human agency, but there remains the fundamental lie at the back of them -that those through whom these suggestions come are producers of good, if not always for the recipients, at least for themselves. The ancient deceit of false promises seems to be at work: the trick originally ascribed to Satan, of presenting evil under the guise of good.

Human beings automatically think that everything is created for “them”. They desire and claim to have free will, but do not wish to take into account the accumulated mountain of human misdeeds that have piled up throughout the millennia, and have created most of the horrors about which they complain. One has often heard people say, “I could not believe in a God who allowed such and such a thing to happen, “as if only what one likes and approves of can have a fundamental existence in the universe. These two desires - to blame one’s misdeeds on something other than oneself. And to commit oneself only to beliefs, that are comforting and comfortable - make it difficult to face the amount of evil that there is in the world, or to investigate where it comes from in order to be able to resist it.

The force of persuasion that encourages evil may be understood as coming from within human beings or as coming from without, as the personification of harmful tendencies that exist within human nature or as the work of an independent hostile intelligence. All that is certain is that lies and false suggestion have the power to destroy us, if we let them, and so it is they, from wherever they come, that constitute the Dark Enemy of our World - the enemy who, from time immemorial has been called the Prince of Darkness.

References

  1. Carus, Paul The History of the Devil and the Idea of Evil (Bell Publishing Compnay New York, 1900)
  2. Evans, G.R. Augustine on Evil (Cambridge University Press, 1977)
  3. Mother Maria (Lydia Gysi) Evil in the New Testament (Greek Orthodox Monastery of the Assumption, 1973)
  4. Ouspensky, P.D. A New Model of the Universe (Kegan Paul, London, 1938)
  5. Ouspensky, P.D. Talks with a Devil (Turnstone Press, London, 1972
  6. Russell, J.B. The Devil, Perception of Evil from Antiquity to Primitative Christianity (Cornell University Press, Ithaca and London, 1977)
  7. Joan O’ Grady The Devil In History, Religion and Human Psyche (Element Books Ltd, 1989)
  8. Hans Jonas The Gnostic Religion (Routledge 1992)
  9. Yuri Stoyanov The Other God (Yale University Press 2000)
  10. King James Version of the Bible.

 

Author: 
Frater F.
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