A few months ago I read a book called Devils and Demonology: In the 21st Century by Katie Boyd. Boyd is a demonologist, although not the type you might be familiar with. Instead of being a priest or an ecclesiastical authority of any kind, Boyd is an occultist who works with people of various faiths, including Hindus and Buddhists. In the book she talks about demons, negative spirits or energies from a variety of faith systems, giving an interesting perspective on the subject. While not the best book about demonolgy or the occult, it was interesting and free since I checked it out from the library.
The book got me thinking about demons, which is interestingly enough a highly controversial subject. Demons and demonic activity mean different things to different people. The classic Christian view is that demons are non-human spirits that follow the devil and have an extreme hatred of humanity. Demons are prone to physically assaulting living humans, often scratching them until they draw blood. Demons are also known to possess the living fairly often, requiring an exorcism to get them out. A demon possessing your soul can put a person at high risk, both spiritually and physically. Another thing: demons are supposed to be smart and quite cunning, so getting rid of one can be tricky (or so I'm told). I'm sure I just enraged someone with my summary of demons, because like I said before it is a highly controversial subject.
I was raised Mormon and there is no room in the theology for non-human spirits. Instead, the Sons of Perdition occupy the station of Satan's right hand beings. They still torture the living and posses their bodies, but their spirits are human, son in a way they are like demons but they aren't. Other religions have their own beliefs on the subject, which is why I suspect the subject of demonology is so controversial.
I've personally had experiences with entities that would likely be classified as demons. If you've ever faced such a thing, you have little question in your mind about the existence of evil. Thankfully my experiences were rather brief, but I've talked to people who have attended "exorcisms" if that's what you want to call it, otherwise known as "castings out." Demons use fear and intimidation during such events, doing things that make it clear what is going on is paranormal and then making specific threats against each person present.
Obviously I don't subscribe to all of the traditional views on demons and demonology, not that I think they don't have some value. But I'm curious if any of you have had demonic experiences or what your beliefs on demons are. If you are concerned about posting something for everyone to see, feel free to send me an email instead.