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Author Topic: Pagan gods and goddesses are Demons?  (Read 8401 times)

RandallS

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Re: Pagan gods and goddesses are Demons?
« Reply #15 on: April 29, 2012, 06:40:40 pm »
Quote from: Juniperberry;52281
"If demons are masquerading as gods, then maybe that's the case with yours? I mean, hate gay people, hate sinners, hate multiculturalism, hate science: hate hate hate. Sounds like a good candidate. I'd look into it."

Except, of course, that not all Christians believe these things -- not even all of those who believe that other Gods are demons/Satan in disguise.

For those unaware of the origin of this belief, it is some that the Roman Pagans brought on with their persecution of Christians. At least one (and probably more than one) Christian writer during those times speculated that deities who allowed such things to be done in their names might really be nothing more than demons.
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Juniperberry

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Re: Pagan gods and goddesses are Demons?
« Reply #16 on: April 29, 2012, 11:44:34 pm »
Quote from: RandallS;52427
Except, of course, that not all Christians believe these things -- not even all of those who believe that other Gods are demons/Satan in disguise.

(Pretending Randall is the hypothetical Christian: )
"Except it happens often enough that there could be a legitimate demon masquerading as God, which means its just as possible demons masquerade as, say, Odin, when that god is actually a different being that's getting an unfair shake. And maybe the demon-God is the one who passed around that all other gods are false. Just an idea to think over."

Quote
For those unaware of the origin of this belief, it is some that the Roman Pagans brought on with their persecution of Christians. At least one (and probably more than one) Christian writer during those times speculated that deities who allowed such things to be done in their names might really be nothing more than demons.

I was unaware, and, interesting! Thanks.
« Last Edit: April 29, 2012, 11:45:26 pm by Juniperberry »
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Jabberwocky

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Re: Pagan gods and goddesses are Demons?
« Reply #17 on: April 30, 2012, 02:37:40 am »
Quote from: Etheric1;52294
NBetter to not broadcast one's faith unless you're prepared to deal with people's ignorance and judgment. HOWEVER, if they are going to attack a person, it's not unreasonable for the person to defend themselves and sometimes the response can be rather harsh, which can have the affect of showing them how rude they are being.  Valuing politeness is a good thing, but in some cases it does nothing to discourage further bad behavior.  

For myself, my unease with that tack isn't to do with much attachment to courtesy.  I'm personally quite fond of getting into shouty slanging matches.

But the OP is obviously already upset about what's being said.  If that's the case, I'm not sure that going for the "nuclear option" is a good idea; it would almost certainly lead to further attacks on his/her beliefs, not less.  There's very few gods that can't be made to look sinister (or for that matter ridiculous) if you take a few traits out of context.
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Jabberwocky

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Re: Pagan gods and goddesses are Demons?
« Reply #18 on: April 30, 2012, 02:40:20 am »
Quote from: RandallS;52427

For those unaware of the origin of this belief, it is some that the Roman Pagans brought on with their persecution of Christians. At least one (and probably more than one) Christian writer during those times speculated that deities who allowed such things to be done in their names might really be nothing more than demons.
To add to Randall's point here, there's reasonable evidence that early Jews may have been monoidolatrous, not monotheistic; they only worshipped/had a covenant with one god, but didn't necessarily reject the possibility of others existing.

That's not common in Jewish theology now, but it does still exist.
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spoOk

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Re: Pagan gods and goddesses are Demons?
« Reply #19 on: April 30, 2012, 03:10:59 am »
Quote from: Jabberwocky;52463
To add to Randall's point here, there's reasonable evidence that early Jews may have been monoidolatrous, not monotheistic; they only worshipped/had a covenant with one god, but didn't necessarily reject the possibility of others existing.

That's not common in Jewish theology now, but it does still exist.

 
I've heard that!
actually all this talk reminds me of this really great little mini animation,a lil girl devil imp squeezes through the gates of hell and finds a lonely old man and spends the long cold night hanging out with him,dancing and entertaining him,then she has to go back and they actually both look sad.

I should try and find it.
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Valentine

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Re: Pagan gods and goddesses are Demons?
« Reply #20 on: April 30, 2012, 04:34:39 am »
Quote from: Jabberwocky;52463
To add to Randall's point here, there's reasonable evidence that early Jews may have been monoidolatrous, not monotheistic; they only worshipped/had a covenant with one god, but didn't necessarily reject the possibility of others existing.

That's not common in Jewish theology now, but it does still exist.

I think you mean "monolatrous," or "henotheistic," but yes, it's directly admitted right there in the Bible.  The book Exodus explicitly acknowledges the Gods of Egypt as real and Their priests as having magical powers; it just suggests YHVH is the best and strongest God.  That's especially true in the Canticle of Miriam, one of the oldest parts of the Torah, which uses phrases like, "Who is like You among the Gods?" with other Gods to be among.  The books of Jeremiah and Kings, and--I will have to check--Judges all refer to the popular worship of Asherah among early Jews, though in a context of attempting to stamp it out, and there are extant artifacts in evidence referring to Asherah as the beloved bride of YHVH.  The passage we call the Ten Commandments has two separate commandments, in good translations:  one saying "don't worship other Gods," and another saying "don't worship false Gods."  There's a reason for having two different rules.

The theological position that the God of the Hebrews was the only true God, and not just the favorite of His chosen nation or the mightiest among the Gods, came along much later than most people realize.  Even then, the interpretation that the other Gods in Hebrew scripture--Canaanite, Babylonian, and Egyptian mostly--were false and demonic took a while.
« Last Edit: April 30, 2012, 04:37:20 am by Valentine »
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Aine Rayne

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Re: Pagan gods and goddesses are Demons?
« Reply #21 on: May 05, 2012, 12:30:47 am »
Quote from: Valentine;52471
I think you mean "monolatrous," or "henotheistic," but yes, it's directly admitted right there in the Bible.  The book Exodus explicitly acknowledges the Gods of Egypt as real and Their priests as having magical powers; it just suggests YHVH is the best and strongest God...The books of Jeremiah and Kings, and--I will have to check--Judges all refer to the popular worship of Asherah among early Jews, though in a context of attempting to stamp it out, and there are extant artifacts in evidence referring to Asherah as the beloved bride of YHVH...
The theological position that the God of the Hebrews was the only true God, and not just the favorite of His chosen nation or the mightiest among the Gods, came along much later than most people realize.  Even then, the interpretation that the other Gods in Hebrew scripture--Canaanite, Babylonian, and Egyptian mostly--were false and demonic took a while.

 
And the Hebrew noun used to refer to God in the Pentateuch and the Tanakh if I remember my sources correctly is often Eloah (not sure I spelled it right), which is feminine and Elohim which I believe is plural. Not to mention evidence that the Holy Spirit is not only female but could be more "in charge" of creation than current translations give Her credit for.
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Mac Gobhann

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Re: Pagan gods and goddesses are Demons?
« Reply #22 on: May 06, 2012, 12:24:43 am »
Quote from: Vymir;51892
I worship Norse and Kemetic gods and recently some people have accused me of worshiping demons and evil spirits. How should I respond to this accusation?

 
Just laugh and move on.

Robert Cannon

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Re: Pagan gods and goddesses are Demons?
« Reply #23 on: June 16, 2012, 11:06:35 am »
Quote from: Vymir;51892
I worship Norse and Kemetic gods and recently some people have accused me of worshiping demons and evil spirits. How should I respond to this accusation?

Bring up the atrocities of Yahweh in the Old Testament. It may sound desperate, but you would be suprised at the results you will get.

Also, examine your lifestyle. Are these divinities leading you to a life of virtue and goodness, or destruction and wickedness? If you are following the former, then bring this up. According to most demonologists, demons tend to torment those who invoke them. They are also known for leading them into a life that is both destructive for the demonolotor and his/her family.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2012, 11:13:33 am by Robert Cannon »

KittyVel

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Re: Pagan gods and goddesses are Demons?
« Reply #24 on: June 16, 2012, 01:58:04 pm »
Quote from: Valentine;51895
Look, if someone thinks the beings you're interacting with are demons, there's no real way to prove them wrong.  People will believe what they believe.  (It's not so different from the secular variation, "I think you're delusional.")  My primary response is this:
I point out that, whatever the nature of my Gods, what They direct me to do is be more kind, more giving, more brave, and more loving.  That when I cleave to my faith I'm a stronger, happier, healthier, more hopeful person who does good service to other people.  And I don't think that's what an evil spirit would be pushing me toward.  The day my Gods direct me to harm a person or a community, to lie, to think ill of the people around me, to be cruel or dishonest, I'll ask more questions, but that day hasn't come.  Likewise, if I'm just crazy and hearing voices, well, they're voices that make me a better person, and direct me to do good in the world, so what's the problem?

Sometimes, if really pushed, I bring up the Gospel passage where Jesus is accused of doing the work of evil spirits.  And he says, "Can evil cast out evil?  A house divided against itself cannot stand."  That is:  would an evil influence really direct me to stand against evil in the world?  Why?

I suppose these arguments only work if people know you're a person of good character.  I suppose, then, the best response is to be a really, really good person.  It's hard to argue with that.  If you do good works and keep your promises and act as a person of integrity and decency, it is pretty hard to argue credibly that you're serving or being shaped by evil forces.

 
I agree with this.  This is pretty much my response to those kinds of accusations, as well.  Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't, but it (almost) always makes people think.
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Abduzza

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Re: Pagan gods and goddesses are Demons?
« Reply #25 on: June 16, 2012, 05:07:51 pm »
Quote from: Vymir;51892
I worship Norse and Kemetic gods and recently some people have accused me of worshiping demons and evil spirits. How should I respond to this accusation?

 
Question their pre-suppositions. Ask them what is their religion? Ask them why that faith is true. Put them on the defensive. If they won't answer then just leave. People that tend to say these things don't think too deeply into these questions anyway.

GoldenSiren

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Re: Pagan gods and goddesses are Demons?
« Reply #26 on: June 27, 2012, 04:59:48 pm »
Quote from: Vymir;51892
I worship Norse and Kemetic gods and recently some people have accused me of worshiping demons and evil spirits. How should I respond to this accusation?

 
Honestly? I don't talk about religion with people in my area. Even though I am very proud of my religion and who I am because of it, I spent the first 13 or so years of my life being bullied for "not being Christian ENOUGH", so I can easily say I don't jump at the opportunity to scream my beliefs to the public. I'm sensing here though that either you yourself decided to tell the public, or you told some close friends who told other people who told the public.

The best option I found was to simply keep your cool. Don't lose your head, look them straight in the eyes, and laugh. Maybe add in an "oh really?" before walking away, chuckling. This is really the easiest option.

The reason WHY I would do this is simple. Sure, you could get into a religious debate, but when it ends, 9 times out of 10 the people you will talk to about it will be dissatisfied with your answer, think your crazy and hate you even more. Ever heard the phrase "You can't argue with stupidity"? Well, you can't argue with ignorance and bigotry either. Not without coming out worse than you went in, anyways.

You don't need to explain yourself to those people. They don't really care about your answer anyways. They just want to feel more powerful by making you question your beliefs. Don't.

And besides, laughing at them will make them think that THEY are the ones saying something silly ;)
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Haven

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Re: Pagan gods and goddesses are Demons?
« Reply #27 on: June 28, 2012, 08:28:28 pm »
Quote from: Vymir;51892
I worship Norse and Kemetic gods and recently some people have accused me of worshiping demons and evil spirits. How should I respond to this accusation?

 
Be kind and simply ignore these accusations.

Wickerman

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Re: Pagan gods and goddesses are Demons?
« Reply #28 on: June 28, 2012, 09:57:13 pm »
Quote from: Haven;61996
Be kind and simply ignore these accusations.

 
This attitude will provide the christians with a nice soft floor mat to walk on, you. Don't make an issue of your religion, but when someone else makes an issue of it then it is your right to defend it and yourself from attacks both verbal and physical. Asatru is not a passive religion, you are not commanded to turn the other cheek.
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Re: Pagan gods and goddesses are Demons?
« Reply #29 on: June 30, 2012, 08:28:16 pm »
Quote from: Vymir;51892
I worship Norse and Kemetic gods and recently some people have accused me of worshiping demons and evil spirits. How should I respond to this accusation?

 
I get this a lot too, people just don't understand paganism at all. They seem to think that anything but worshiping the Christian God is worshiping the devil in disguise.

There's not really much you can say to people who believe this too, so I'd just smile politely and nod. ;)

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