Monday, 15 November 2010

Another sign: Belief in things that don't exist

Recently the Catholics decided they were missing an important component of their churchly congregation, namely: Exorcists! (And overseas is just as uncritical as here, or rather, here is just as reprinted as overseas.)

"Possible signs of demonic possession include scratching, cutting, biting of the skin; profound displays of strength; and a strong or violent reaction to holy water."

Yeah? That's certainly a sign of something. A severely disturbed person who needs proper psychiatric help, for example. But of course people won't just leapt to a supernatural explanation when there's a perfectly possible natural one. Clearly those who are asked to perform an exorcism will first make sure that an exorcism is appropriate. Right?

"Overwhelmed with requests for exorcists, United States Roman Catholic bishops are holding a special training workshop in Baltimore this weekend to teach clerics the esoteric rite, the Catholic News Service reported."

Special training, like psychiatric training, or at least enough to know when to call in professional psychiatrics or other suitable doctors, and not just assume that an exorcism is the answer.

"Catholic Church law stipulates that only properly trained priests can perform the rite - and then only with the permission of their bishops."

The law also stipulates that all natural steps are followed first, right?




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