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Why do exorcists ask demons to reveal their names?

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In this interview with an exorcist from Switzerland, we're told the devil isn't everywhere—but don't go looking for him either, just in case.

Tangibly?

In the case of the French man in the first exorcism I participated in, I remember that, when the demon manifested itself, I had the impression of being surrounded by pride, as if it were smoke or fog. It’s hard to explain, but pride seemed like something you could touch; it filled the room. The exorcist asked him for his name, and he responded, “I am rex.” There is no demon named rex, king. The exorcist insisted, “Tell me your name,” and finally he responded, “I am Satan, the prince of this world.”

Why do you ask for the demon’s name?

The Ritual requires it, for a specific purpose. Naming something, or knowing its name, means having power over that thing. In fact, God gives Adam the power to name things. At the instant that the demon reveals his name, it shows that he has been weakened; if he doesn’t say it, he is still strong.

Are there typical signs of possession?

Those listed in the Ritual. There are four: aversion towards sacred things; speaking in unknown or dead languages; having extraordinary strength that goes beyond the person’s nature; knowledge of concealed or hidden things.

Can people put themselves in danger?

Yes. By getting involved with anything that has to do with magic, the occult, witchcraft, or cartomancy. If it helps us to grow in sanctity when we go to Mass, pray, go to confession, or draw near to God, in the same way, black masses, satanic rites, movies and music of that kind have the effect of bringing us closer to the devil.

I dealt with the case of a woman who began reading Tarot cards, as many do, for fun. Except that in her case, she truly divined people’s past and present, and in some cases, their future. And naturally, she was a great success. At a certain moment, she understood on whom her success depended, and she stopped doing it, but it was too late: she was possessed.

How is it possible to curse someone?

Just as I could give someone the task of killing someone, I could ask a demon to do harm. But keep in mind: the great majority of rites realized by supposed witches or warlocks are fraudulent, without any effect.

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