The Absurdity of Evil

An exorcist told me one of the most disturbing and maddening things about exorcism is that one can rarely diagnose the problem completely. “You see,” he said, “the devil is a liar and the father of lies. Once you have identified the demon you don’t know if you really have or not. The demon lurks within. He will lie, lie, lie. He will pretend to respond to your commands, but then trick you. He is malicious beyond your imaginings.”

I have thought much about this over the years since I heard this and realize how true it is. The devil is a liar, and because he lies all the time dealing with him is like walking on quicksand or dancing in a minefield. When dealing with evil in the personality we are constantly confronted with false images, false diagnoses, confusing signals, distractions, distortions and disturbing evidence. Read more.

  • The Ordinary Catholic

    I’ve always wondered about the rage aspect that some people exhibit towards things Christian. You can see this rage at pro-life rally’s where people in prayer are spat upon, called the most vile of names and other actions are conducted against the pro-lifers which defy all logic. You can see real hate in some them. Unable to defend their position, they seek to destroy their object of hate. Militant gay activists seem to be so full of hate and rage that nothing short of demonic possession can be concluded for their actions against those that do not accept homosexual acts as normal or good. I do think that one can become so steeped in sin that no longer is reason or logic part of their thought process. It almost seems bestial. That scares me.

    • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

      This is true. In a parish where I was working the priest said it was a sin for Catholics to vote for Obama. The demonic spitting rage evidenced in the emails we received was horrible.

  • Sheba Nyakaisiki

    Thank you

  • veritas

    To see what evil is really like just look, slowly and carefully, at Our Lord on the Cross.
    Satan’s apparent triumph, his moment of great glee, was to have the most beautiful Being in Creation tortured and nailed to a cross. Any creature that could get such pleasure out of such evil is twisted and warped beyond imagination.

  • The Ordinary Catholic

    Actually, I think Satan found out too late what God’s plan was for mankind, in dying for us, so he actually tried to stop the crucifixion I think by coming to Pilate’s wife in a dream, warning her that Pilate should have nothing to do with Jesus. It was too late for Satan by then. He tried to have Pilates wife convince her husband to leave this whole affair alone. My two cents

  • Bruce

    Satan at work confusing people. If it is a fight Catholics want, stop fighting each other and start evangelizing those who hate us. This is what St. Francis did – to seek out those who hate us most and preach the Gospel.

    I found a typical front of the culture of death. If it is contraception you want to fight, and women who hate the Church because of her stance on it, start here:

    I got the ball rolling, and they have predictably hammered me for preaching about Mary and authentic sexuality. Its your turn to help me if you want. These are deeply confused and disturbed women.

  • flyingvic

    I ask for your prayers. There is a member of my congregation at the moment who – whatever else that is told that is true or untrue – has been touched and infected by satanism. The time involved in ministry to that person, the prayerful calling on the authority of Christ, the picking up of so many pieces – all is exactly as you describe; and because of the lies, the truth of the matter is almost impossible to unravel. Further, the effect of all this on personal relationships – both around the person and around those who are trying to help – makes it feel as if the infection is threatening to spread. Praise God that by the power of Christ some progress is being made – but there’s a long way to go.

  • Pep

    Father, I took your article to be talking about the rage within ourselves more than the rage within others. ;-) I’m dealing with this very thing now as I’m noticing it more and more in myself. The more I’m noticing it, the more I do it and the more I cry to God for His help. I feel as St. Paul said in Romans 7:14-17  “For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin.  For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.  If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good.  Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. ” My only hope is Divine Mercy because I feel so helpless against it!

    I just came across your blog, Father, through your blog on Mitt’s Mormonism that was linked on Spirit Daily. I added you to my favorites and look forward to reading you each day. God bless you

  • Puff the Magic Dragon

    I was thinking about the line> And the gates of hell shall not prevail ( against the church)

    Gates are made to keep intruders out. We aren’t supposed to protect ourselves against the gates of hell, we are supposed to attack the gates of hell. The “gates of hell” are intended to protect demons from the God and his church; an structure of defence. Doesn’t that mean that the church, if it should get its act together and lodge an attack against Hell, we’d win?

    I’m just trying to figure out the meaning of things- probably failing badly