I’ve thought about this quite a bit. I think about horrific scenes I’ve seen in movies, or read in novels. Things that really get under your skin. Things that scared the crap out of me, honestly. And I wonder – “How did someone think this up?” and “If they thought it up, does that mean they might be capable of doing it themselves?”
I was fortunate enough to meet a very special person a few months ago. If any of you have seen the movie “The Rite,” this man is the priest who this movie was based on. He is an exorcist. That’s right. He casts out demons.
You may think this is all just more “fiction,” some kind of antiquated fable. But he says he gets hundreds of calls a month, more than he can handle. And he just works in a small section of California. There are literally thousands if not tens… hundreds of thousands of people who believe they are possessed by evil spirits. But that’s not the scary part. While he finds that most of them have other problems – drugs, mental health issues – he does say that a significant number of them… are right.
I can’t remember the exact number, but he said that something like 80% of people in Italy are regularly involved with the occult. He said that the exorcists there are overwhelmed with work. He said this country is getting very busy as well these days.
I find this all disturbing, and fascinating. He confirms the things shown in that movie. I know others who have witnessed exorcisms themselves. It was terrifying for them, but they are not doubters anymore.
I think horror in fiction can be gratuitous, if it is glorified. I see nothing commendable about having a story where the evil wins, where people are destroyed, and that is the happy ending. But I do think it is a good thing to scare people. It’s being honest. Because it’s something that is really happening in our world, whether you believe in it or not. It’s happening.
I didn’t realize that every parish in the US has an exorcist. Yes, there are litterally hundres of exorsists in this country engaged in a full time war against demons.
Think of that. Did you know?
Many of my stories are about what happens to people when they involve themselves with dark, powerful things – things they don’t completely understand and can’t control. I don’t want to glorify it… but I do want to scare you.
I hope that doesn’t make me a bad person.