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The occult: Religious occult beliefs

The Occult Day, November 18.

Catholic Possession

An exorcism is performed only after all physical and psychological possibilities have been eliminated. The exorcist tends to be in his 50's or 60's and has performed exorcisms under older priests before. There is a right of exorcism, which can take 20 minutes, several hours, or even several days. The main tenet is that the exorcist is performing with Jesus Christ's assistance because a person is too weak to combat evil by themselves. He or the bishop chooses a young priest to work with him as a form of training, along with four lay people on average, including a doctor. This author, a Catholic priest and exorcist, quotes another exorcist as laying down the general stages of exorcism, which occur in 9 out of 10 exorcisms. There are Presence, Pretense, Breakpoint, Voice, Clash, and Expulsion. The basic battle is with the entity showing itself and then doing battle with the exorcist for the expulsion of the spirit (Martin 1992).


Kabbalism started by and large in medieval times and the modern movement started in the 15th century when Jews were evicted from Spain. It believes that language is sacred and predates creation and with hermeneutical methods, the symbolist provided a pneumatic or ecstatic state of consciousness. Diet and mystical themes like sacred time will get the users closer to the sacral meaning of the texts. There are Ten Perfections called Ten Sefirot, which are lovingkindness, power, beauty, splendor, victory, foundation, sovereignty, wisdom, crown,  and understanding. Each perfection was associated with areas of the body, which related to a view of gender and sexuality, creating a Phallocentric worldview. It was not a doctrine but a series of tensions, complexities, and debates that continue until the modern day (Garb 2020).




The ancient Emerald Tablet contains the essence of alchemical teaching. Although it appears concerned with turning base metals into gold, alchemy is in fact spiritual, the goal is to transform the base lead of self into the gold of spirit. The evolution of these topics provides a practical guild to spiritual growth. The seven steps of alchemical transformation involve hands-on techniques and exercises that evolved into a spiritual tradition of transformation. The steps in order are Calcination, Dissolution, Separation, Conjunction, Fermentation, and Distillation, which are all shown on a large painting in the proper order (Hauck 1999).

Repurposing the Azoth of the Philosophers This is the Azoth. 


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Casey, J. (John P. A. (2009). After lives : a guide to heaven, hell, and purgatory. Oxford University Press.

Frankfurter, D. (2006). Evil incarnate : rumors of demonic conspiracy and ritual abuse in history. Princeton University Press.

Garb, J. (2020). A history of Kabbalah : from the early modern period to the present day. Cambridge University Press.

Hauck, D. William. (1999). The emerald tablet : alchemy for personal transformation. Penguin/Arkana.

Levack, B. P. (2013). The Devil within : possession & exorcism in the Christian West. Yale University Press.

Martin, Malachi. (1992). Hostage to the devil : the possession and exorcism of five living Americans (HarperSanFrancisco ed.). HarperSanFrancisco.

Materer, T. (1995). Modernist alchemy : poetry and the occult. Cornell University Press.

Morrisson, M. S. (2007). Modern alchemy : occultism and the emergence of atomic theory. Oxford University Press.