Author: ks. MieczysЕ‚aw Piotrowski TChr,
"Love One Another!" 14/2009 → Magic, idolatry, spiritual threats
All those who practice various forms of the occult surrender their will to the power of evil spirits. To avail oneself of the services of a touch healer or other occult healer, to resort to any kind of paranormal healing method is exceedingly dangerous.
Why dangerous? All forms of Eastern cult techniques bring about an increase of kundalini energy, which in turn opens up a person’s chakras or energy centers. Through these energy centers we fall under the control of an evil spiritual power, which manifests itself in the various occult practices.
At the age of seventeen, Belgian-born Jacques M. Verlinde, who would later become a Catholic priest, rejected Christ and all forms of Catholic religious practice. After finishing his university studies and completing his doctoral dissertation in nuclear chemistry, he set out for India. There he became a pupil of a guru and spent four years in Hindu ashrams, practicing various meditation techniques, performing yoga exercises, and reciting mantras — all this with the purpose of opening himself up to the experience of God. But he did not find what he was looking for. The following is an experience Fr. Verlinde had during his stay in India: “During my long meditations it often happened that on coming out of my trance-like state, I would see, exteriorly, a beautiful woman’s face looking at me with an expression of sadness mingled with infinite tenderness. Each time I would be greatly surprised and ask her, “Who are you?” Whenever I asked this question, tears would pour from her eyes, and then she would vanish. On thinking back on this experience following my conversion, I was strongly convinced that it was the Blessed Mother trying to give me a sign: the sign of a suffering mother, who sees her child going astray and yet respects his freedom. All vshe can do is offer him her tears. When, as a priest, I visited Poland for the first time, I made a stop at Our Lady’s shrine in Czestochowa. How great was my surprise, when during Holy Mass, finding myself directly in front of the icon of the Blessed Mother, I recognized the face of the lady who used to visit me there in India” (J. M. Verlinde, God Rescued Me From Darkness, p. 6).
When Verlinde returned from India his chakras were open — the result of his yoga practice and prolonged states of meditation. Observing this, a number of diviners persuaded him to use these wonderworking powers for the good of his neighbor — to heal the sick. Since Verlinde was not yet aware of the evil involved, he began to make diagnoses with the aid of a pendulum. Upon examining the sick person, he could clearly see what ailed him. He had the gift of clairvoyance, which is a form of extrasensory perception, a kind of spiritual vision. Human beings normally perceive with the senses. On the other hand, pure spirits — angels or demons — perceive phenomena directly, instantaneously. Verlinde also discovered he had the gift of healing through touch. He reckoned this was a gift of God, by which he could help people. Only later did it become clear to him that people using occult powers received their knowledge from demons, and not angels. As a fresh convert, he prayed the rosary daily and attended Holy Mass frequently. While undergoing his own spiritual healing, he realized that he was being controlled by an inner voice — some mysterious spiritual being. This was an experience of so-called channeling; that is, an evil spirit working through the medium of a human being. The discovery upset Verlinde, but his fellow practitioners in the occult assured him that his was a friendly, healing spirit. But when Verlinde went to Mass, this supposedly “friendly” spirit began to utter appalling blasphemies during the consecration. To Verlinde this was a clear sign that he was indeed dealing with an evil spirit. In order to free himself
from it, he had to submit to a series of prayers pronounced by an exorcist priest. Upon being delivered, all his abilities to heal and recognize illnesses vanished at once. Again this was a clear sign to him that the healings he had performed did not come from God.
Later Verlinde and a group of scientists at the University of Lyons had occasion to conduct a study of people who had been healed through occult therapies. It turned out that these had been false healings. The symptoms of the illness had merely migrated to another part of the patient’s body. So, for example, if you went to a touch therapist complaining of a pain in the leg, then your leg would indeed stop hurting after his treatment, but then a few weeks later you would feel a pain in your arm. After a subsequent visit, this pain would also disappear, but then after a while you would start complaining of headaches. And so it would become a vicious cycle of healings and deeper enslavement to the powers of darkness.
There can be no doubt that occult practice of any kind condemns practitioner and user alike to manipulation by unclean spirits; and the consequences are tragic. It provokes serious physical, psychological, and spiritual disorders and suffering brought on by the action of unclean spirits. Suicidal thoughts, blasphemous outbursts, aversion to prayer and the sacraments, sadness, depression, diabolic afflictions, and sometimes outright demonic possession are all known consequences of occult practice and use.
Every person who practices the occult, who resorts to touch healers, clairvoyants, magicians, or any occult technique whatsoever, opens himself up, even without knowing it, to the action of evil spirits, which subsequently use that person as their medium and increasingly enslave him. Those who practice this craft knowingly are guilty of breaking the First Commandment and commit one of the gravest sins.
The charism of healing, which God imparts to certain people in the Church, is quite different from occult healing. The charism of healing in the Church is linked with the action of the Holy Spirit, who reveals to us the decisive victory of Jesus over Satan, sin, and death. His fruit is the experience of spiritual joy, peace, and freedom, for spiritual healing comes first — through reconciliation with God and total obedience to His will; and if physical healing should come, it is merely a sign of the spiritual healing. Spiritual healing is the more important. It comes from breaking with sin and uniting ourselves with God. As St. Faustina observes, it is precisely in the sacrament of penance, during our encounter with God, who is Love and Mercy itself, that the greatest miracles take place: “To avail yourself of this miracle, it is not necessary to go on a great pilgrimage or carry out some external ceremony; it is enough to come with faith to the feet of my representative and reveal to him your misery, and the miracle of Divine Mercy will be fully demonstrated….Oh, how unhappy are those who do not take advantage of the miracle of God’s mercy! They will call out in vain, for it will be too late” (Diary, 1448).
The gravest of sins
The occult is the religion of Satan. Its practice in any form is one of the gravest of sins, for it is a rejection of the First Commandment. To the domain of the occult belong the following activities: touch energy healing, radiesthesia (dowsing), magical incantation, spiritism, hypnosis, inducing trances for the purpose of making diagnoses or healing, quackery, fortune-telling, astrology, clairvoyance, chiromancy, tarotology or other methods of divining the future, Eastern martial arts, yoga, belief in horoscopes, amulets, Atlantis rings, etc.
The greater our religious ignorance, the weaker our faith, the less often we pray and receive the sacraments, the more we are prone to superstitions and occult practices. Those who break the bonds of faith and reject God’s love believe in their own ability to achieve happiness through riches, pleasures, power, and good health. In their bid to achieve these goals they resort to occult practices so as to make use of their mysterious, immaterial powers. And so, to realize their plans and desires they turn to psychics, clairvoyants, astrologists, touch healers, sorcerers, yoga masters, and similar practitioners of meditation techniques. With the aid of various amulets, talismans, gestures, formulas, and rituals they seek to acquire extraordinary powers that will protect them from illness or failure, enable them to control the reality around them, and satisfy their selfish desires. By resorting to the occult, we turn away from the one true God, who is absolute happiness, and open ourselves up to mysterious demonic forces in the false conviction that it is they that will bring us our desired happiness. The consequence of such an attitude is enslavement to the powers of evil — even to the point of demonic possession.
There are many attested cases of people who contracted chronic headaches, anxiety conditions, depression, insomnia, and spiritual disorders from a single encounter with a touch healer, psychic, or clairvoyant.
The only effective way of being healed, of freeing ourselves from the destructive influences of Satan, is to undergo the therapy that Jesus Christ offers to us free of charge. First of all, we need to make an honest confession and pray earnestly to Jesus that He may break the bonds binding us to the evil spirits. We must try to attend Holy Mass as often as possible, even daily, receive the Eucharist, offer up to Jesus all our spiritual and physical sufferings, entrust ourselves to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray the rosary and chaplet of divine mercy, and read Holy Scripture.
To free ourselves from enslavement to the powers of evil and heal our spiritual wounds we need time. We must arm ourselves with the virtue of patience, to bear our suffering courageously. Then, what seems like an impossible situation becomes an actual blessing for us as we embark on the challenging journey of growing in holiness. By trusting implicitly in Jesus, we will surely triumph.