Friday, October 31, 2014

Horror and Faith

On the impact of the novel and film The Exorcist. To quote:
The novel's author, William Peter Blatty (who also penned the Academy Award-winning screenplay for the film), marked the 40th anniversary of the novel's appearance by writing a column for, in which he reveals that "I haven't the faintest recollection of any intention to frighten the reader, which many will take, I suppose, as an admission of failure on an almost stupefying scale." Rather, Blatty, the son of devout Lebanese Catholic immigrants, reveals "'The Exorcist's Secret Message": It is "a novel of faith in the popular dress of a thrilling and suspenseful detective story—in other words, a sermon that no one could possibly sleep through."

Principalities and Powers

That is not, of course, the way that the novel and the subsequent film have been portrayed by either their fans or their detractors. Indeed, many Christians have accused Blatty of opening up readers and filmgoers to demonic influences—missing not only the point of the novel but misunderstanding Christ's own teaching regarding the principalities and powers of this world. Demons hold no sway over those who are firm in their faith; but they do, in the words of Pope Leo XIII's Prayer to Saint Michael the Archangel, "prowl about the world, seeking the ruin of souls." By denying their existence, and treating the world of spiritual warfare as a parlor game, we open ourselves to their influence and even, in extreme cases, to possession. (Read more.)

1 comment:

julygirl said...

They come in unlikely disguises.