While not everyone is open to things about demons or the ‘occult’ as a whole it seems even some of the ‘most educated’ people are more willing to open their minds than you’d expect them to be. If you’ve never heard of Dr. Richard Gallagher, after this you might want to learn more about him as a whole.

Dr. Richard Gallagher for those who don’t know is a psychiatrist who lives in New York and is in his 60s. He has spent years upon years doing psychiatry work and claims he has in the past roughly 25 years seen at least 100 true cases of what he deems demonic possession, according to Dailymail. While he has been quiet in recent times I came across an interview that was done with him a couple of years back and it completely blew me away.

When speaking to Dailymail Gallagher told them as follows in regards to possession and demons as a whole:

“They’re fallen angels,”

“This is what I literally believe. They’re extremely bright; they’re much brighter than humans. They’ve been around for millennia – so they speak all languages.”

“I’ve heard them speak Chinese; I’ve heard them speak ancient Greek, which I studied.”

“I’ve certainly heard them speak and understand Latin.”

“I didn’t volunteer, particularly, to get involved in this stuff, evaluating people for possession, demonic attacks,”

“I was just asked to do it, and maybe people thought I was open-minded or whatever. Probably people knew that I was a practicing Catholic, but I never volunteered for it – and, you know, slowly, I just began [to be thought of as] sort of an expert.”

He also went on to note that it seems as though these demons target people who are more-so devout or someone who has dabbled in the darkness that they perhaps should not have done. He claims to have seen cases that are or were seemingly unexplainable outside of possession in itself. Because Gallagher was quite skeptical in the beginning he was a good candidate for this as he took extra precautions, in the beginning, to make sure the people he was before weren’t facing something explainable before diving into the unknown.

He says that through his years of working with exorcisms and other things of the sort he has come to understand that there are truly evil spirits in the world, and they do not help us in any sense of the word. They can and will ruin our lives if we do not fight against them. These creatures are not good on any level and capable of things most could never fathom. 

Back in 2016 Gallagher actually wrote an article for The Washington Post and part of it goes as follows:

Is it possible to be a sophisticated psychiatrist and believe that evil spirits are, however seldom, assailing humans? Most of my scientific colleagues and friends say no, because of their frequent contact with patients who are deluded about demons, their general skepticism of the supernatural, and their commitment to employ only standard, peer-reviewed treatments that do not potentially mislead (a definite risk) or harm vulnerable patients. But careful observation of the evidence presented to me in my career has led me to believe that certain extremely uncommon cases can be explained no other way.

The Vatican does not track global or countrywide exorcism, but in my experience and according to the priests I meet, demand is rising. The United States is home to about 50 “stable” exorcists — those who have been designated by bishops to combat demonic activity on a semi-regular basis — up from just 12 a decade ago, according to the Rev. Vincent Lampert, an Indianapolis-based priest-exorcist who is active in the International Association of Exorcists. (He receives about 20 inquiries per week, double the number from when his bishop appointed him in 2005.) The Catholic Church has responded by offering greater resources for clergy members who wish to address the problem. In 2010, for instance, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops organized a meeting in Baltimore for interested clergy. In 2014, Pope Francis formally recognized the IAE, 400 members of which are to convene in Rome this October. Members believe in such strange cases because they are constantly called upon to help. (I served for a time as a scientific adviser on the group’s governing board.)

Unfortunately, not all clergy involved in this complex field are as cautious as the priest who first approached me. In some circles, there is a tendency to become overly preoccupied with putative demonic explanations and to see the devil everywhere. Fundamentalist misdiagnoses and absurd or even dangerous “treatments,” such as beating victims, have sometimes occurred, especially in developing countries. This is perhaps why exorcism has a negative connotation in some quarters. People with psychological problems should receive psychological treatment.

But I believe I’ve seen the real thing. Assaults upon individuals are classified either as “demonic possessions” or as the slightly more common but less intense attacks usually called “oppressions.” A possessed individual may suddenly, in a type of trance, voice statements of astonishing venom and contempt for religion, while understanding and speaking various foreign languages previously unknown to them. The subject might also exhibit enormous strength or even the extraordinarily rare phenomenon of levitation. (I have not witnessed a levitation myself, but half a dozen people I work with vow that they’ve seen it in the course of their exorcisms.) He or she might demonstrate “hidden knowledge” of all sorts of things — like how a stranger’s loved ones died, what secret sins she has committed, even where people are at a given moment. These are skills that cannot be explained except by special psychic or preternatural ability.

I have personally encountered these rationally inexplicable features, along with other paranormal phenomena. My vantage is unusual: As a consulting doctor, I think I have seen more cases of possession than any other physician in the world.

Most of the people I evaluate in this role suffer from the more prosaic problems of a medical disorder. Anyone even faintly familiar with mental illnesses knows that individuals who think they are being attacked by malign spirits are generally experiencing nothing of the sort. Practitioners see psychotic patients all the time who claim to see or hear demons; histrionic or highly suggestible individuals, such as those suffering from dissociative identity syndromes; and patients with personality disorders who are prone to misinterpret destructive feelings, in what exorcists sometimes call a “pseudo-possession,” via the defense mechanism of an externalizing projection. But what am I supposed to make of patients who unexpectedly start speaking perfect Latin?

I approach each situation with an initial skepticism. I technically do not make my own “diagnosis” of possession but inform the clergy that the symptoms in question have no conceivable medical cause.

What do you think of all of this? Could there actually be demons out there in this world? Are possessions actually happening? I think it could really be taken as a metaphor for the world we live in today. 

Sources:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2016/07/01/as-a-psychiatrist-i-diagnose-mental-illness-and-sometimes-demonic-possession/

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5857677/Psychiatrist-professor-says-demonic-possession-real-witnessing-exorcisms-25-years.html

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