Pestered By A Sexual Spirit?
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This is a personal story.
I had an occult experience once, or at least something that seemed like one, the symptoms of which came and went over several months. Thankfully they didn't get too bad. I don't regret the experience, because it taught me some valuable lessons. For a while, I wondered if I could be beginning to suffer from a weird mental illness I'd never heard of. The main reason for telling the story is so that if anyone reads it who is having a similar experience to the one I had or who does in the future, they will hopefully be reassured that they are not losing their minds and that this is in fact a common problem.
The first symptoms
The symptoms began a few days after I'd met a particular man, who had said he'd done a couple of supernatural things in the past, but he wouldn't tell me what, and tried to play them down. I didn't know he was still actively involved in the occult. However, he liked to read New Age literature, which should have given me an indication that he was, but I didn't know enough about the New Age Movement at the time. I'm a Christian, and he said I'd be bound not to approve of the literature. But I was interested in what he had to say about it.
When I first got the symptoms, I thought my imagination must have gone haywire. I wondered what could be causing them, and it did cross my mind to wonder if the man could be performing some kind of occult practice on me, but I didn't take the possibility that seriously then. I wasn't worried about the symptoms, because they didn't generally interfere with my everyday life.
The first symptom was a stupidly unrealistically intense level of sex drive activity which would suddenly hit me and stay around for about half an hour and then go away again. It was always accompanied by me having a strong image of the man on my mind.
I was puzzled by it, because I didn't feel sexually attracted to him when I was with him. The sensation didn't turn me on psychologically, because it wasn't pleasurable. It wasn't like real sexual attraction. It was like a shoddy counterfeit. So the image and the sex drive activity didn't connect.
After several days, the symptom disappeared.
Then I got symptoms where I felt as if I could physically sense the man lying passively in bed beside me sometimes. It wasn't as if I was just imagining him being there. I thought my mind must be playing weird tricks on me for some unknown reason. But I wasn't sure. I began to want to know more about astral projection.
Then I got symptoms where I got a sensation of being gently caressed repeatedly on a particular part of my body sometimes when I was in bed. No one else was there. It was a pleasant sensation, and I could stop it whenever I wanted simply by turning over. But it bothered me a bit sometimes, because I didn't know what was causing it. That one wasn't accompanied by me having an image of the man on my mind.
Beginning to get worried
I started to have vivid fantasies about the man perpetrating a crime or intimidation against me. At first, I again thought my imagination must be thinking them up for reasons I couldn't understand. It had never even crossed my mind to wonder if he'd ever do those things to me. But the nasty fantasies became startlingly frequent, until it one day occurred to me to wonder whether the man could possibly be trying to influence me to do something he wanted or for some other purpose "by the power of the mind".
I knew virtually nothing about such things.
When I next met him, I asked if he did that kind of thing to people and he said he did, and gave me an example of a man he'd sent "telepathic hate mail" to, because he'd been telling people he'd performed some other occult practice on him. He said that after he'd sent the "telepathic hate mail", the man "degenerated".
He said he did that kind of thing to "ridiculers and persecutors".
I was a bit shocked to think he really might have done telepathy on me, and I mentioned it briefly to someone, though I didn't confide the details in him, because I thought that what was happening might just be my imagination, and if it was, it wouldn't be fair.
I also phoned a couple of other people who were Christians and told them that someone I knew was involved in the occult and had said he did telepathy on people, and I asked them to pray for him. But I didn't say I thought he was trying things on me. And I didn't pray much about the situation myself. I should have prayed more.
A few days later I found out that the man thought I was his "enemy", because I'd been ignoring him, and because of another thing I'd done that I'd only thought was minor and had only meant in a semi-lighthearted way.
Under normal circumstances, I'd have been flattered that he didn't want me to ignore him, but as it was, I was scared.
So I spent a lot more time with him for a while, so he'd stop thinking I was his enemy. I made sure I was never alone with him in an isolated area though, because I wondered whether he might want to do to me physically what the nasty fantasies had indicated that he might be thinking about doing.
The symptoms disappeared for a few weeks. I wondered if he could have been causing some of the ones I'd had over the time I'd known him by concentrating really hard on sometimes thinking a particular set of thoughts and sometimes masturbating, and somehow getting a spirit entity to transmit the thoughts or sensations to me.
But I was only guessing.
I didn't really know what had been going on. Being ignorant of such things, I started wanting to read occultic literature on visualisation/concentration/telepathic techniques, so I could find out exactly what he'd been doing to me and how he'd been doing it. Now I'm very glad I didn't. If I had, it could have been dangerous, because I might have been tempted to use the techniques in some way or other, and may have had unforeseen problems as a result.
About that time, someone I'd had no contact with for a few years said they'd woken up one morning and seen my name in large letters above them, and they'd prayed for me for a while.
A few weeks after the nasty symptoms stopped, I got another symptom which was very different from those.
It was like the ones I'd had at the beginning, but It was oddly accompanied by a feeling of tenderness. Unlike the others, it did turn me on for a little while because of this, and I even began thinking sexual thoughts about the man with my own mind, until I started thinking about what was happening and became irritated because I was trying to concentrate on a television programme and I didn't want it to happen anyway.
If I'd had that symptom at first, it might have made me fall in love with the man, but by that time I didn't want to know! I pondered over where the feeling had come from. I thought that if it had come from myself, then my sense of judgment must be extremely poor, for it would mean that I was feeling tenderly towards someone who I'd only weeks before been having vivid fantasies about that made me wonder if he was capable of committing acts of sexual violence and threatening other types of violence against me, which is what the fantasies had been about.
I thought that if the feeling did mean that I was discovering that I was prone to falling in love with people like that, I'd be much better off lying down and dying, to save myself from future danger!
Thankfully, I decided not to!- I didn't seriously consider doing that. It was only an intellectual reasoning process.
The symptom irritated me for the rest of the evening, because when I left my bedroom where my television was, it went away, but when I came back in, some semblance of it came back again. So I stayed out of the room and missed my programme!
Unlike the other ones, this symptom scared me when I thought about it afterwards, because now I was a lot more certain that it was the result of an occult practice that the man was performing on me, and I didn't know what might happen in the future, or what he was really out to achieve, or whether he might be trying to do things to me that I didn't even know about.
I wondered if he could be trying to read my mind, and perhaps picking up on things I was thinking about him.That idea scared me most of all.
I was upset, because the latest symptom was so different from the nasty ones that I wondered what kind of person could display such different attitudes towards people within such a short time.
I spent more time in people's company after that, because I didn't want to be alone any more, not wanting to be scared by thinking about the symptoms. I wondered how much or how little it would take to make the man make them turn nasty again.
My response to the symptoms
I resorted to doing something that was probably far more drastic than necessary to make him leave me alone, and to try to make him think about what he was doing.
Although I'm a Christian, I regrettably discovered a few of my weaknesses and resorted to some sinful behaviour in the process. I sent him a long letter, most of which responded to the many criticisms of Christians he often made, the thinking partly being that if he became less antagonistic towards Christians, he might be more open to becoming one, and if he did, he wouldn't want to do scary things to people anymore. I did also genuinely want him to become a Christian. I was concerned about him.
Near the beginning of the letter I asked him lots of questions about in what circumstances he'd do nasty things to people, how nasty he was capable of getting, and what kinds of nasty things he'd do to people.
The sinful part involved me thinking up some weird theories about why he was the way he was, some of which were reasonable, but some of which were extreme. I let my imagination run away with me. I found some of them rather amusing for reasons I can't remember now, but they probably upset him.
I think the letter affected him much more badly than I'd intended. I actually forgot most of what I'd put in it almost as soon as I'd written it. But knowing him, he can probably remember it in detail to this day, which is a shame really, because I'd probably wonder why on earth I wrote the things I did if I read them now.
Some of the theories verged on racism. His racial origins made it easy for me to make up things I could have teased him with and to invent the theories, for reasons I won't divulge here, because it might make it easier for anyone who knows him to identify him.
I thought it was possible that there were things in his past that might have made him feel vengeful towards people, and that that might have been the reason he might have wanted to inflict on me what the nasty fantasies had suggested he might want to do.
It also occurred to me that it might stop him being interested in me if I pretended to be a bit of a fascist - a tactic I'd used years earlier when trying to ensure that a couple of other people would want to avoid me. I'd done that in a more extreme way then though. That was before I was really a Christian. Afterwards, I'd felt so guilty that I thought I'd never do it again. But it was surprising how easy it was, having done it once, to think about doing the same type of thing again when I was under stress and wanted to achieve a similar result.
I'd actually been entertaining myself with very mildly racist thoughts about the man for some time. The symptoms had made me think of him a lot.
I'd enjoyed trying to imagine what he would do if I provoked him by telling him the jokes I'd made up, because he got very scathing even about trivial comments he didn't like. I'd thought my thoughts were just a piece of harmless fun, particularly since I'd never mentioned them to anyone else. But they weren't godly thoughts. They were disrespectful.
I found him fascinating sometimes, but I'd actually begun to think of him some of the time as an object of entertainment and curiosity, because some things about him were so unusual. But I discovered that that's dangerous, because thinking of someone as an object makes it easier to do horrible things to them, because you're less concerned about how what you do will make them feel, because of course objects don't have feelings.
I was so amused by my thoughts at the time that I didn't stop to think about whether I should have been having them. But when the time came when I wanted to fend off the man, having been thinking them already, it was easy to embellish the thoughts and make them nastier. If I had stopped myself from thinking the ungodly thoughts much earlier, it's very doubtful that it would have suddenly occurred to me to begin thinking nastier versions of them when I was under stress. Therefore, my attack on him wouldn't have been so bad.
This realisation was mirrored a few months later when someone who helped me sort out the occult problem turned up and read me parts of some Christian books, some of which were about the occult and some of which were about other things. One was about a Christian thought life. I can't remember who the author was or what the title was, but it said that a pastor the author counselled had had an affair with a woman that eventually ended his career. The affair had started after she'd come to him for counselling and he was sexually attracted to her, and she'd enticed him to begin a relationship with her, and he couldn't resist the temptation.
Apparently, the reason he'd been so quick to fall into it was because he'd been having sexual thoughts about women and so his mind was on that track to begin with. If he'd had a history of stopping himself from having lustful thoughts whenever they came into his head, obeying the Bible, which says that thinking about extramarital sex is as sinful as doing it, it would have been less likely that he'd have been so quick to fall into temptation, because his mind wouldn't have been focused on such things.
Then again, what happened to me was weird, because besides my other motives, I felt as if I was being driven to do what I was doing by some force, and in fact, in the end, that was my main motive for completing what I was doing. I didn't know what was causing it, but I didn't stop to think about it too much, which was a mistake.
A short-term job opportunity unexpectedly came up for me in another area just when I wanted to give the man the letter, so I left for several weeks after I wrote it, to give him a chance to cool down, which he did. I'd given someone else an instruction to give him the letter, knowing it would get to him after I left. They had no idea what was in it. I was told when I came back that after he'd read it, he'd threatened to make my life so it wasn't worth living and sworn about me for ages. The people who'd given the letter to him must have been a bit puzzled.
Some of the things that upset me most
My actions led eventually to me bringing the whole occult experience out into the open.
After I'd been back for a little while I decided I wanted to confront the man about it. I wanted him to own up and tell me why he'd done it. I only got the opportunity to mention the worst thing at first.
Not surprisingly, when I finally got the courage to do so, he just swore at me and called me stupid.
I wanted people to know what I thought he'd done, so after that, I began to feel under pressure to try to prove that he'd done an occult practice on me. I thought he would do it to other people if he was left to continue unchallenged.
I expected non-Christians not to believe it was an occult experience and to think I must simply have a mental problem, and it didn't bother me. But I confided a bit of the experience in a few Christians, and their reaction did upset me. It made me begin to wonder whether I really could have a mental problem.
I spoke to a psychologist I know, who is also a Christian. At first she said it might well be a mental problem, because she'd met lots of people with a lot of weird symptoms. But she did say that if I thought it was an occult problem, I needed to speak to someone who helps people who've had occult experiences, and not a psychologist.
In a later phone call she said she'd been puzzled by what I'd said, because no one had ever approached her before with the range of symptoms that I'd had. I spoke to my church pastor about my symptoms. But he didn't know anything about the occult and didn't know what to do.
One weekend I had symptoms that were different from all the others. They were disturbing me, mainly because of their timing. I was getting strong feelings that made it feel as if the occultist was trying to tell me that he really wanted to see me and make up with me. But I was sure he wouldn't after what I'd done. And I didn't want to see him either.
I became confused and upset because I didn't know what was causing the symptoms; but I thought they might be telepathy.
I was getting them in the early hours of Sunday morning and they wouldn't let me get to sleep, and for a moment, a feeling of anger came over me and I wanted to do telepathy back to him, to tell him to go away and leave me alone. If I'd known how to do it, if it's possible that I could have done it spontaneously, I would have done. But that could have been dangerous, because I might have come under demonic influence as a result, or having succumbed to temptation once, it might have been easier for me to do it under stress in the future, or I may have even been tempted to do it just because it was convenient, and it's possible that I could have been gradually drawn into the occult, and thus away from God.
I asked the pastor to try to find information about telepathy for me on the internet, not having access to it myself or knowing how to use it then. He looked, but he didn't find anything he thought was respectable. I'm thankful for that now, because I realise it was a dangerous request which could have made us both vulnerable to being tempted to do occult techniques and being gradually drawn into the occult. He told me to go to the library to find information on that kind of thing, which was obviously just as bad.
I only got symptoms on a couple of occasions after that. Once or twice I got the sensations of being caressed repeatedly again. They bothered me much more than they had before, because I thought that if the man was somehow causing them via a spirit, I couldn't work out why he'd want to, after what I'd done to him.
When I first strongly suspected that the man was performing an occult technique on me, I didn't consider it serious enough to bother someone who specialises in helping people with occult problems. But I should have done. If the person I'd confided in then had advised me to see someone who did, I would have done, and things wouldn't have become so serious.
I spoke to someone I'd thought of as a friend and a Christian. He invented a weird and unlikely-sounding theory as to things that must be going on in my subconscious. I wouldn't have minded him inventing the theory, but the fact that he at first assumed it was true upset me, especially as he didn't tell me that at the time. I've since discovered that rather than being solely responsible for dreaming the theory up, he was almost certainly influenced by the largely discredited theories of Freud.
Perhaps I partly deserved it, after one of the joke theories I'd made up about the man, with my "friend's" help - something about two egos fighting for dominance within the same man.
My "friend" said he thought I must have "subconscious sexual attraction" towards the man.
The psychologist I spoke to outrightly rejected the possibility that such a thing existed.
My "friend" told me he'd thought that the symptoms were being caused because I'd really been sexually attracted to the man but had been too scared to admit it to myself, so I'd repressed my attraction for him when I was with him. He eventually told me that at first he'd just assumed that that was the case, after telling me on several occasions beforehand that he thought the man had done telepathy on me.
He'd actually known the man at college years earlier and said he'd been into telepathy and other occult phenomena then. He said they'd once tried to stop the clocks by concentrating on them really hard, and the next day they were all slow; but he'd thought that someone might have just turned them back to spook people.
I thought that since he'd known the man for much longer than I had, he must be a better judge than me of whether the man was likely to be really doing an occult practice on me or not. I was obviously wrong!
My "friend" was the one I'd told that I'd thought the man might be performing an occult technique on me the day he told me he did telepathy on people, and he had made me much more certain that my problems were occultic by saying he thought it was telepathy. If he hadn't, I would have been more hesitant to take the drastic measure I took to make the man leave me alone.
After the matter got serious, he said that he hadn't actually thought the man's powers were genuine at college, although the criterion he used for judging that was rather dubious - I asked what it was and he said he'd known a Spiritualist who he'd been scared of, but he hadn't been scared of that man!
And then he made fun of my experience. He apologised, saying he'd been drinking, And then he carried on! Being deceived like that was worse than the occult experience, and I was more upset and angry with my "friend" than I was with the occultist, because I'd trusted him.
I don't know why he told me on so many occasions that he thought the man had done telepathy on me when he didn't really believe it. Maybe he thought it was entertaining, and perhaps he was trying to warn me off the man. Because of a couple of things I'd said, he was worried that I was attracted to the man and that I'd "get involved" with him. I wouldn't have done that, but he must have thought I would, because he told me not to. So perhaps he thought he was telling a harmless lie for the greater good. But lies aren't harmless. I've hardly spoken to him since. How can you have a worthwhile conversation with someone if you don't know whether you can believe what they're saying, and if you don't know if they've really got the attitude towards you that they seem to have? I felt betrayed after that.
(After I moved and the thing had died down, I wrote to my "friend" and asked why he'd said what he had, so he had the opportunity to explain if it had been a misunderstanding, but he didn't respond.)
I ended up feeling isolated from supportive people and upset because of what people who I'd thought would be supportive had said, and worried because I was ignorant of what was really causing what was happening, and scared to confide in anyone who knew about occult problems, because of the reception I'd just had and my worries that I might get another one like it, and because if they said they'd never heard of my symptoms, I'd have to seriously start contemplating the possibility that I was going mad, and that was worrying, because the symptoms had just hit me all of a sudden, completely out of the blue, and I didn't know what had caused them, so I wouldn't have known how to deal with them or what else might happen. That feeling was one of the worst feelings I've ever had in my life. It was much, much worse than the occult experience itself or anything else connected with it.
Thankfully it only lasted for a couple of days before the person I referred to earlier who read the parts of books to me and was very supportive turned up and advised me to see someone who helps people with occult problems, and said they'd go with me.
There was a church nearby that offered the service free.
My Feelings For The Man
On one occasion, my "friend" had said he thought that if I could work out what my feelings were towards the man, I was "nine tenths of the way to solving the problem".
Ah, so I should have decided to lie down and die after I'd had that strange feeling of tenderness after all!
I had felt emotionally attracted to the man, and it was weird, because although I had been a little attracted to him of my own volition at first, I'd ended up not being all that keen on him, but I still had the feelings, and I didn't fully understand why. But it had never been a sexual thing. One day I had found myself missing him less than an hour after I'd spent some time talking to him, and I didn't understand why, because I've hardly ever missed anyone in my life, even when I've been away from them for much longer or said goodbye to them for good!
I've reached the conclusion since then that perhaps these feelings can sometimes be spiritual, and that if I'd asked God to stop the spirits that were causing them from doing so, then maybe the feelings would have disappeared.
I felt sorry for the man, even after I'd had the nasty fantasies. That was partly because he had the air of being affection-starved. I'd mentioned that to my "friend". I really wanted the man to become a Christian, and I'd wanted to help him do so. I felt concerned about his well-being. I'd told my "friend" about my concern. That was what must have made him worry that I wanted to "get involved" with the man, which I didn't.
Even after I moved to another area not long after I'd had the problem with the man, I had a strong compulsion that came on sometimes for at least a few weeks to contact him again and try to make up with him and apologise for what had happened.
I'm glad I didn't, because who knows what trouble it would have caused. The last time he'd met me he'd called me a "stupid little woman", - (not that I'm that little actually, at least height-wise!) :-) and so I don't think he was really feeling very friendly towards me! Since I knew that, I didn't understand why I was having the strong feelings.
Soon after I'd had those feelings, there was a television programme on about a mediums' course which I watched because I felt the need at the time to educate myself more about these things, and one of the mediums said he could often feel the strong emotions of the spirits, that were sometimes so strong that they made him feel like shedding a few tears.
I was glad I'd found that out. I was relieved to have found out from more than one source, as I did, so soon after I'd had the problems, that these spirits can cause feelings, because at least I had some rassional explanation for what had happened.
When I'd got the strong compulsion to see the man again, and when I'd found myself missing him without understanding why, if I'd asked God to banish the spirits that were causing it from my presence or rebuked them in Jesus' name, maybe the feelings would have disappeared.
My compulsion to see the man again eventually disappeared after I'd become more busy and so had more to occupy my mind, and so thoughts of him didn't cross it so much.
Bizarrely enough, however, not that long after that, I found myself being tempted to do something else regarding another man that I didn't want to do. I thought I was being tempted more than I would have been if I'd just wanted to do it myself. Eventually, I prayed that God would deliver me from any spiritual influence that may be causing it; and the temptation grew much less intense after that.
But as for the time when I was discussing my problem with the other man with my "friend", he did seem to fluctuate in his opinions. He one day said that the more he'd thought about it and prayed about it, the more he'd thought that something occult was going on. Oddly enough, that was just two days before the evening when he made fun of my experience, even after I'd tried to make him take it seriously.
After that happened, I really did start to feel down. But thankfully, it wasn't long before the supportive person came along and I began to feel better.
Speaking to christian counsellors
When I spoke to the counsellor whom the supportive person had advised me to see, I was very hesitant at first to begin talking about the symptoms because I was worried that she'd say the things the other people had said, so I said several other things first, like how the psychologist had said it wasn't subconscious sexual attraction.
I got really nervous when I started speaking, because I thought it would only be a very short time till I might discover that she'd never heard of the things that had happened to me and I'd have to start seriously thinking about the possibility that I might have an unexplained mental problem.
But she didn't even wait for me to finish my sentence, but interrupted me and asked about my other symptoms, and then said it was a well-known occult phenomenon!
Then I realised that I hadn't needed to go through any of what I'd just been through! If I'd confided in her when I first suspected that what was happening might be an occult experience, both me and the occultist wouldn't have been hurt.
The counsellor said the experience wasn't caused by telepathy but by a type of spirit called an incubus or a succubus.
She said she'd seen much worse cases than mine.
She said these things can do a lot of damage if they're left to hang around, though she didn't say what damage they do. She prayed for me, and after that I hardly got any more symptoms.
They'd virtually gone by that time anyway, so I don't know if it really made any difference.
She said that the type of spirit that causes such things hangs around certain people and goes out to various people in their circle without them knowing.
After what I'd done to the occultist, that came as a bit of a shock! I said that I'd provoked him and she said, "Don't provoke him or you'll make the spirit angry." Too late!
She recommended that when I went to bed at night, I should praise God for everything I could think of to praise him about - the fact that I can walk, have good hearing, and for all the other parts of me that were in good working order, and all the other things that were going well in my life that I could be grateful for. She said that doing this might stop unpleasant influences bothering me.
Whether it would have worked or not, I don't know, since the symptoms had virtually gone by then anyway.
The counsellor wouldn't answer all my questions, so I spoke to another Christian counsellor over the phone who said that these spirits are called incubus and succubus spirits and they're supposed to be male and female spirits, but they're really just manifestations of the devil.
Before then, I'd never even pondered on the possibility that demons or the devil could cause sex drive activity!
I told him that the other counsellor had said the man wouldn't have known what was going on, and he said that actually it was very unlikely that he hadn't known the spirit was hanging around him, and very doubtful that he hadn't known what was happening. So I didn't know what to think.
Interestingly enough, I recently spoke to a psychic who dismissed the possibility that an incubus spirit had caused what had happened to me. She said that she knew people who "battled psychically" with people, but she'd never known anyone to call an incubus spirit up. She said she assumed that what had happened to me was being caused by deliberate psychic harassment from the man, via telepathy.
Whether the man caused what happened deliberately or not doesn't worry me now; but at the time I visited the counsellor, so soon after it had happened, it upset me.
Although the counsellor who told me that what had happened to me was a "well-known occult phenomenon" took a lot off my mind by telling me that, and I still feel very grateful to her for doing so, there were queries I had that she wouldn't discuss, and so I felt as if I needed to go elsewhere to find out the answers to things that were still concerning me.
I got the impression that she thought of me as a set of symptoms, and once they'd been cleared up, she didn't understand why there was still a problem. She did too much talking and too little listening, which meant that she didn't discover that my real concern wasn't the symptoms, which had virtually disappeared when I came to see her! And it meant that she wasted time talking about things that weren't relevant to me.
She did discuss a few things that I wanted her to discuss. I asked her why the spirit would have given me nasty fantasies when I didn't even know the man thought of me as his enemy, and she said it would have wanted to make me try to placate him until I eventually came under his dominance.
But she didn't want me to think about the symptoms. And she seemed to dismiss the idea that the fantasies could have been telepathic, without explaining why. And when I mentioned the symptom that had been accompanied by a feeling of tenderness, she dismissed what I was saying, seeming to doubt that it was an occult experience, without giving me a reason why, such as saying that demons don't do such things.
It could have been a misunderstanding, because that was the one I'd embellished with my own thoughts. And I didn't express myself that well. Perhaps she just wanted to stop me thinking about it. But it left me feeling bad, because the feelings had been so out of line with what I would naturally be feeling at the time that I thought they couldn't have come from my mind. But I'd never heard of demons causing feelings. So I was uneasy about it.
However, very shortly after that, I heard that demons can cause feelings, including nice ones. Since then I've heard about it more and more. In fact, it appears to be quite a widely known phenomenon. Relief from ignorance can put a person's mind at rest.
I think there ought to be more information about the kind of thing that caused what happened to me and other occultic phenomena on Christian websites. The counsellor said that people don't need to know that much about the occult. And she mentioned, for some reason, that some people think they need to know all about the cults, in order to talk about Christianity to people in the cults, but all they need to know is "the truth" - (that is, the truth about what's revealed in the Bible).
I didn't feel like standing up for myself and arguing logic with anyone right then, because I felt so vulnerable that I wasn't in the mood for debate; all I wanted was a bit of information and a sympathetic ear.
But I don't agree with what she said entirely. It would be wrong to focus on the cults so much that they become the most important thing in your life to the exclusion of God. But if someone wants to investigate the Mormon church with a view to joining it and a Christian doesn't want them to, for instance, the Christian has to know enough about the Mormons to give them a good reason why.
About a year before I met the occultist I was thinking of doing a course at a college, and became interested in another one which was to do with aromatherapy and reflexology etc. I did something completely different at another college instead, and while I was there I became friends with someone who was interested in things like that and I suggested that she go on this course. She did. Later I found out that reflexology is apparently based on ability to tap into the energy of a particular spirit.
Christians view any spirit that doesn't come from God as potentially harmful. After my bad experience with the occultist I became wary of spending time with people involved in New Age practices, so I'm now in the bizarre position of being unenthusiastic about talking to someone because she went on a course that I suggested she go on! If I'd known that reflexologists can work on the basis of tapping into spiritual power before, I wouldn't have mentioned the course.
The counsellor I visited didn't want me to talk about the possibility that some of the symptoms could have been caused by the man deliberately.
I visited her twice. I was too shocked by the realisation that I may have provoked the occultist when he hadn't known why to ask many questions the first time. When I thought things through afterwards, there were things that were still bothering me, so I went back. But she told me I ought to just forget everything that had happened. I wasn't particularly keen on doing that. I wrote to her and told her and she wrote back and quoted the Bible verse which says, "The one thing I do, however, is to forget what is behind me and do my best to reach what is ahead." (Philippians 3 13b)
I've heard that it's not uncommon for people who've become Christians after having been deceived into following cults to be upset by people who try to persuade them to forget everything by quoting that verse in the same way. It can sound insensitive to people with a lot on their minds.
But in context, it isn't anything like a prohibition on talking about upsetting experiences. The counsellor didn't mean it to sound like that. She probably thought it would be unhealthy for me to dwell on my experience. But there were complications in my situation that she didn't find out about because she only concerned herself with my symptoms, rather than what else might be going on.
She may have thought that I'd only recently begun to get them and they were the only thing concerning me. She said that where the symptoms came from shouldn't worry me, because all I had to do was to ask God to get rid of them. But she can't have understood how scary it can be to worry that you might be going mad; and rightly or wrongly, I thought that if I was, I couldn't guarantee that God would want to get rid of the symptoms, because I thought he might think that a spell of mental illness would be a healthy learning experience for me. If so, it would be a bit daunting, because I couldn't predict what else might happen or how much worse it would get.
I'd come to the counsellor hoping for the reassurance that I wasn't going mad, which, to begin with, I'd got.
The reason why whether the man had caused any of the symptoms deliberately was important to me was because for one thing, it was a bit horrifying to think that I'd provoked him when he didn't even know what had gone on, and I thought I ought to apologise to him and withdraw the accusation I'd made against him.
But he'd said one or two things that could have been hints that he did know, in which case it wouldn't have been so clear-cut.
I shared the place where I lived with someone else. The most major hint the occultist gave was that a few days before I'd got the symptom with the feeling of tenderness, he'd for some reason asked me which bedroom was my bedroom. I mentioned this, but the counsellor may have thought I was just thinking about things unhealthily, or maybe she wasn't sure of the answer to my question because of her belief in not finding out that much about these things, because she didn't want me to talk about it.
I told the supportive person I was thinking of apologising to the occultist for accusing him of doing an occult technique on me and provoking him with the letter when he might not have known what was going on, and they strongly warned me not to.
They said he'd either think it meant I wanted to re-establish a friendship with him and the symptoms would flare up again, or he'd be so insulted by what I said about him having a spirit that he'd launch an attack on me that was much, much worse than before. They said he hated Christians, and so he must hate me.
I don't know if they were right, but the thought that he could have hated me since he met me upset me.
Another reason why whether he'd caused the symptoms deliberately was important to me was that I thought that if he had hated me from the moment he met me - which was when he'd asked if I was a Christian - it would have meant that his apparent desire for friendship with me had been a deception. If it had been, there had to be a reason. I wondered if he'd been out to seduce me, so he could discredit yet another Christian. He knew that Christians shouldn't have sex outside marriage.
When I'd first met him he'd said, "If you're a Christian I would expect you not to fornicate; I would expect you not to lust after men ..." and a list of other things. He said that if someone calls themself a Christian they must expect to be "watched", to see if they're living up to Christian standards.
I'd thought that was fair enough at the time. But the thought that he might have been deliberately trying to make me do unchristian things was upsetting. If I could have been reassured by some type of evidence that the people these spirits hang around don't know what's going on, I would have thought that he probably hadn't been out to deceive me by being friendly, and so I wouldn't have been upset with him.
Thinking about the occultist's possible motives
Then again, I wouldn't have been sure about it. He was interested in reading the Bible, and even had it on computer disk. And he liked to listen to Christian radio and discuss its contents.
When I first met him I naively assumed he must be interested in the possibility of becoming a Christian. He said he'd recently been to a revival meeting, and talked about a Billy Graham crusade he'd attended.
He said that his "enemies" thought he had a closed mind, but he didn't have. But later, after I found out that he'd begun to think I was his enemy, I asked why he was interested in reading the Bible and he said it was an "interesting expression of man's philosophical thought, like 'Mein Kampf'". (That was the book that Hitler wrote, in case anyone doesn't know.) I asked why he listened to Christian radio and he said, "Know the enemy!" So I don't know what the truth really was.
I'd enjoyed listening to him sometimes because he knew some interesting things about the Bible, and he talked about it a lot. But sometimes he said it said things that I knew it didn't say.
The first day I met him he tried to tell me that it says people are reincarnated, saying, "The Bible says, 'The soul shall re-inhabit.'" I don't know if he was just saying it to test whether I'd believe him or not. Thankfully I'd read the Bible cover to cover and I knew it doesn't say that, so I told him it didn't and challenged him to find the place in it where it did, which he knew he couldn't do. After I'd fallen out with him I one day heard him telling someone (not a Christian) that the Bible says something which was actually a major distortion of what it does say.
Christians need to be as familiar as they can be with the Bible.
I've been reading quite a lot about how the cults and some churches deceive people by twisting the meaning of some Bible verses and saying that the Bible says things it doesn't. It happens a lot. We shouldn't rely on what other people say about the Bible even if we think they are generally a good teacher.
The man told me he'd become a Christian once, but he was confused about whether it had been a genuine conversion, because he'd been a teenager at the time so his hormones had been playing up. He said, "You don't really know what's going on then, do you." I'd tried to work out the connection between Christianity and hormones.
He was very critical of Christians, and my "friend" said he'd been like that when he was at college, besides being into occult activities. So his conversion couldn't have lasted long.
The man said the only reason he hung around with New Agers was because generally speaking they were much nicer than Christians. But he must have been more deeply involved in the New Age than he made out, because he was so interested in New Age literature, and, as I discovered when I asked if he did telepathy, involved in occult activities. So again, I don't know whether he said those things because he was deliberately out to deceive me or not.
I've read that New Age organisations sometimes infiltrate Christianity and try to subvert Christians and Christian churches into following New Age practices which compromise true Christianity, to further their goal of merging all world religions into one.
One of the main reasons they don't like true Christians is that we believe Jesus Christ's teaching that he is the only way to God. Having this belief seems "intolerant" and "arrogant" to people who believe there are many spiritual paths. On the first day I met the man I said to him that some people thought Christians were arrogant because of this, and he readily said, "I think Christians are arrogant!" So maybe he was involved in trying to undermine the faith of Christians and was trying to make me lose my commitment to true Christianity to do his bit for the New Age strategy.
But I don't know. Maybe I'm making far more out of his behaviour than I should. If he did knowingly inflict the occult experience on me, perhaps there was a much simpler explanation.
Another worrying incident
I thought that if he had done things deliberately, it would be more important for me to get out of his way if he came along. About that time I developed a minor physical ailment very near the part of my body that had been caressed by the unknown entity, which could possibly have meant trouble.
The first time I got it it was a couple of days before I first spoke to the counsellor I visited. That time it wasn't bad and I didn't think much of it, and it went away after a few days.
But a couple of weeks later, around the time I visited her again, it recurred, and it was worse. I got genital skin irritations with it. I didn't know what could have caused it. I got really worried about it for a little while because I thought it might get serious, but thankfully it didn't, and it didn't last very long. But I wondered if the man might somehow have caused it to happen by cursing me in revenge for telling people I thought he'd done an occult practice on me.
The reason this was a concern was because I thought that if the man had somehow caused it, he must be feeling very angry with me, so I didn't know what to do if I met him. Or I wondered if the spirit could be causing it without his knowledge, perhaps because it was angry with me for visiting the counsellor, in which case, it would be unfair of me to think it might be him. Or I wondered if it was just a coincidence.
The counsellor who told me the man probably knew exactly what was going on with the symptoms I'd had before let me talk to him about how I'd thought the man might have been doing a telepathic-type technique on me and about my concerns as to whether he might have anything to do with my minor ailment, or whether it could be caused by the spirit without him knowing, and he discussed things with me, and told me what was likely and what wasn't.
I'm not sure if everything he said was completely accurate, but because he allowed me to talk things through and he discussed them with me I felt better after that.
When I told him about some of the symptoms I'd had, he interrupted me and asked what my own involvement in the occult was. I said I wasn't involved in it, but I had a friend who was a medium. (we'd been friends at school ever since we were little.)
He said, "repent of your sin!", and he prayed that God would forgive my sin, without explaining why he considered me to be the sinner rather than the victim.
I'd begun to feel like a victim by then!
I was even more upset after that! It made me even more nervous when I spoke to the counsellor I visited, because I wondered if she might condemn me for what had happened.
Moving to another area
Some of the lessons I learned
When I'd got the first symptom, not long after I'd met the man, it went away after a while and a reassuring message vividly imprinted itself on my mind, apparently from out of the blue, which told me not to worry about what had happened, because God was in control and it would all work out to a good purpose.
It also said something else, which I now think was likely to have been a piece of deceptive information. I thought about the message for a little while and then put it to the back of my mind.
I thought it must have come from God. Later I doubted that.
The person who first said my symptoms would have been caused by a spirit said that these demons often give people a message. She said they tell people they're expressing God's love to them.
I'd got a different message.
If the spirit had given me the one she said they give, I would have known it wasn't God, because God's love isn't sexual. Besides that, the first symptom I'd got was nothing like love anyway.
But the message I'd got could have been a type of variation on the usual one. Not knowing whether the message had come from God or a demon was a bit upsetting. But at least now I'm much more aware that Christians ought to be wary of messages they appear to receive in their minds, because they might come from demons, even though it seems that they're from God.
I should have handled the occult experience differently. Because of what it taught me, I'd advise anyone else who thinks that someone's doing an occult technique on them to pray to God for protection, and pray for the occultist as well, that God will change them and bring them to himself. I'd also say that if you're tempted to do anything to hurt them, pray about that as well.
That's what I should have done.
I found part of what I was doing very entertaining and I got carried away and didn't stop to think that it was going against biblical principles like not showing prejudice, and not mocking people, and keeping the mind focused primarily on praiseworthy things. I should have analysed what I was doing in the light of how the Bible says we should behave and asked God to give me a right attitude, surrendering my desire to provoke the man to Him, in the light of His greater wisdom. It would have worked out better in the long run.
The reason I didn't pray to God about the occultic things that were happening to me was because at first I was merely puzzled by what was going on rather than being distressed by it. After the man told me he did telepathy on people, only a few more things happened.
I should have prayed instead of trying to deal with things my own way.
I didn't know what to pray, though. The Bible talks about demons being driven out of people on a once-and-for-all basis, but it doesn't talk about what to do about thoughts and other things that seem to be being somehow transmitted on an on-going basis.
And I didn't want to pray that God would get rid of the symptoms, because although I didn't want them, I thought it was safer to have them, baring in mind the nasty fantasies I'd had, because I thought that at least then I'd have some idea of what the man was thinking about me, so I'd know if it was safe to be near him. I now think that that was a mistake.
If any of the things that happened were being transmitted by some telepathic-type means, how else could they be transmitted long distances other than via a spirit? And how could anyone be sure they'd be accurate? How does anyone know they can trust any spirit other than the Holy Spirit to tell the truth?
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Some people think there's an explanation for what's interpreted as seeing, sensing and feeling spirits that has nothing to do with the supernatural. From an article called Galvanizing Ghosts from Psychology Today:
A young man awakens to find an apparition in his bed. A teenage girl feels a presence in her uterus and senses the outline of a baby over her left shoulder. Are these people seeing spirits?
Michael Persinger, Ph.D., a professor of psychology at Laurentian University in Ontario, Canada, suspects not. Persinger has demonstrated that a sensitive temporal lobe-the area that is responsible for regulation of emotions and motivated behaviors-together with naturally occurring magnetic fields, can trigger a ghostly encounter. Indeed, the couple in question had sensitive lobes and an electronically stocked house, with magnetic activity that peaked nightly just when their apparition materialized. The girl who thought she was pregnant had suffered a brain injury as a child. In addition, her bed was surrounded by a pulsed magnetic field, the result of a clock just a few inches from her pillow.
"Individuals prone to paranormal experiences are sensitive to weak electromagnetic fields and to man-made electrical fields, which are becoming more prominent in the communication age," explains Persinger, who has studied the link between magnetic fields and paranormal experience for 15 years.
Don't be afraid to question the truth of what a religious authority figure tells you, or even the Bible or other holy books themselves, or certain people's interpretation of them. Nothing to do with religion or the supernatural is so well established in fact it shouldn't be questioned. To find out why caution is a good idea, visit:
Are you up to trying the challenges of the New Testament's moral guidelines, and would you like to know more of what it says about the love of Jesus? Here are some links to Bible quotes about the beautiful ideals the New Testament encourages Christians to try to live up to:
There are a lot of pages on this website with quotations from the Old Testament on them. Many of these are unfortunately rather gruesome, since the main theme of the Old Testament is warnings and stories about how it says societies were punished for mass lawless and hurtful behaviour, even to the extent of having war brought on them by God, that seem to have been designed to scare societies where crime and violence were rampant into behaving more ethically. In case there is any misunderstanding, it should be understood that this website does not endorse war as anything other than a last resort. The position of the website owner can be gleaned from the articles:
Fancy some light relief or laughter therapy? Then go to the first of our jokes pages:
If you have a problem affecting your mental health or well-being, like depression, a difficulty with life-damaging worry, panic attacks, phobias or OCD, marriage problems, an addiction, an eating disorder, recovering from the trauma of sexual abuse or domestic violence, coping with bullies in the workplace, or bullying and teasing at school, trying to lose weight, raising difficult teenagers, caring for someone with a disease like Alzheimer's, wanting to recover from anorexia or self-harm, or grieving for someone you were close to or feeling lonely, and you'd like some ideas on coping or getting past it, visit our Self-help series.
If this is the first page you have visited on this site, this is part of Broadcaster.org.uk, a website about social and psychological issues, what the Bible says about social problems and other topics, and how they affect people's lives today.
Go to the Broadcaster.org.uk home page to find out more.....