Witchcraft in Fundamentalist Communities
Within certain Fundamentalist Evangelical groups and other Fundamentalist Christian communities witchcraft is seen as a real and tangible threat. This type of witchcraft happens on a frequent basis. It is commonly defined as using spiritual forces to attain one’s ends. It is committed within the Christian community often unknowingly by fellow Christians because of envy or spite. This version of witchcraft is similar to various forms of maleficia such as the evil eye. Interestingly, it is not coming from a source of occult practice or witchcraft practiced by those who identify as witches, but from within the very community they belong to. Although, the fear of occultism is also very real for many fundamentalist Christians who believe that they are engaged in spiritual warfare with the forces of darkness. These beliefs put Pagans, witches, and other magical practitioners in an interesting position when it comes to interfaith relations.
There are three accepted categories that can be observed when someone is under the influence of witchcraft. There are also various signs to look for to determine if someone is using witchcraft on another. While researching for this article I discovered that three categories of witchcraft are accepted by these individuals. The categories or stages are intimidation, manipulation, and domination. Although these categories are coming from Protestant sources; I found it interesting how closely these categories match the stages of demonic possession that we see in the Roman Catholic Church. The stages of demonic possession being; infestation, oppression, and possession.
The symptoms of those under this type of influence are similar to those that one experiences when under attack via psychic vampirism and other energetic attachments. Many well-meaning or deceived Christians are often unknowingly praying against their fellow Christians instead of praying for them. This often unconscious directing of negative spiritual forces manifest as if the victim is under psychic attack. According to various sources, Christians are taught to bless those who curse using an all too familiar axiom, ” Whatever is released on Earth is released in Heaven, and whatever is bound on Earth is also bound in Heaven.” This should sound all too familiar to many magical practitioners familiar with the Hermetic Principles, and the commonly used statement “as above, so below.”
It seems to me that many of these beliefs create a culture of fear, in attempt to keep these communities separate from any ideas that may taint their Fundamentalist views. It is a reality for many people that these are very real fears. There are many blogs and websites offering information for those who think they may be under attack from this type of witchcraft.