Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Aleteia
Thursday 29 July |
Saint of the Day: Sts Martha, Mary and Lazarus of Bethany
home iconSpirituality
line break icon

Here’s what Satan’s voice sounds like, according to St. Ignatius Loyola

JESUS,SATAN

Public Domain

Philip Kosloski - published on 07/08/18

It is very distinctive and can be easily recognized.

In his teaching on the discernment of spirits, St. Ignatius Loyola lays out specific rules for how to identify the voice that is speaking in your soul. In particular, Loyola explains how to tell if Satan is speaking to you.

He notes, “if in the course of the thoughts which he brings it ends in something bad, of a distracting tendency, or less good than what the soul had previously proposed to do, or if it weakens it or disquiets or disturbs the soul, taking away its peace, tranquillity and quiet, which it had before, it is a clear sign that it proceeds from the evil spirit, enemy of our profit and eternal salvation.”

While in most cases this is true, there is also an added dimension of discernment in regards to the state of a person’s soul. If the soul is moving from “good to better” the good Angel touches “sweetly” and the bad Angel touches, “sharply and with noise and disquiet.” If the soul is moving from “bad to worse” than the opposite is true and the good spirit can seem sharp and try to kick us back in the right direction, while the bad Angel will try to lure us into even worse sin, “sweetly.”

Therefore, it is important to understand the state of our own soul before determining whose voice is talking to us.

Loyola’s observation came from years of discernment in his own life and has found confirmation in other sources. For example a 16th-century priest named Dom Lorenzo Scupoli wrote, “The devil does his utmost to banish peace from one’s heart, because he knows that God abides in peace and it is in peace that He accomplishes great things.”

The next time you hear a voice in your heart influencing your feelings and emotions, take a step back and use Loyola’s guide to discernment. It may just be the devil trying to tear you away from God, leading you into the depths of despair.


THE TORMENT OF ST ANTHONY

Read more:
5 Saints who were exorcists


WOMAN ON TRAIN

Read more:
What does my Guardian Angel look like?

Tags:
PrayerSatan
Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...




Top 10
1
ORGAN
J-P Mauro
Reconstructing a 12th-century pipe organ discovered in the Holy L...
2
HIDILYN DIAZ
Cerith Gardiner
Gold-winning Filipina Olympian shares her Miraculous Medal for th...
3
Zelda Caldwell
World-record winning gymnast Simone Biles leans on her Catholic f...
4
Joachim and Anne
Philip Kosloski
Did Jesus know his grandparents?
5
PRINCESS DIANA AND MOTHER TERESA
Mathilde De Robien
Did you know Princess Di was buried with a rosary?
6
morning
Philip Kosloski
This morning prayer is easy to memorize
7
SAINT ANTHONY OF PADUA
Philip Kosloski
This prayer to St. Anthony is said to have “never been know...
See More
Newsletter
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.