Was It Really Mental Illness or Was It The Demons?
Mental health practitioners have observed that in patients with a diagnosis of schizophrenia, often delusions exist that either exalt the status of the patient (eg, the patient is God's representative/messenger on earth) or denigrate the patient (eg, God or demons is sending messages to the patient specifying his/her sinfulness and need to be punished/purged/cleansed).
When people are raised on the Bible they learn that God or demons influence everything so they are inclined to believe that they are having a religious experience (good or bad) when these things are happening to them. But this belief could in fact be masking a person's mental health issues.
ALSO, deep, strong, intense meditation in an effort to draw close to God can in fact trigger psychosis - GOOGLE: "Meditation-induced psychosis".
Jesus cast out 7 demons out of his Close Associate Mary Magdalene.
Mark 16:9 "...he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils
Hence watch out and even count how many there are. May be useful to log in Field Service report
I grew up in Spanish language congregations where demon stories were more common than in English language congregations. It was part of the culture. In Mexico everyone seemed to have a ghost story to share, so these people (like my parents) brought this with them and adapted the stories to fit with JW doctrine.
In my family there was a reoccurring pattern. My parents were in a loveless marriage and every now and then there would be a huge blowup. Eventually things would settle down, my parents would make up, and there would be a cleansing ritual where we would purge our house of anything that might be associated with demons because surely the demons were making my parents fight. It wasn't that they were mismatched and should have never gotten married in the first place.
Most of these stories are benign and kind of comical in retrospect. But every now and then it veered into dangerous territory. There was a very troubled family that was kind of on the periphery of the congregation. They were off-and-on inactive. Their youngest son was clearly troubled. He just had that look to him. One day the elders get called to their house because the son is becoming violent (he was in his teens) and was mumbling gibberish. The kid confesses to hearing voices in his head telling him to kill his mother. The elders, of course, recommend prayer and helped them search the house for possessions that might be associated with demons.
I know this because I was told this story first hand by one of the elders who was there to counsel them. He was a high school drop out and a welder. The other elder was a barely-literate man whose education consisted of a few years of elementary school in Mexico. Instead of receiving professional medical assistance, this dangerous teen was receiving counseling from these two guys.
I don't know what happened to that family. This incident happend about 20 years ago. I've always wondered. Not long after that, I moved away and know very little about the goings on of my old congregation anymore.
A person doesn't have to have full blown schizophrenia in order to hear voices, see visions etc. This can happen to "high-functioning" people as well.
The misfiring of the circuits in the brain that underlie language, hearing and speaking can cause some people to have transient hallucinations, and some people to have a more persistent, life-disrupting illness like schizophrenia:
Their were a couple of "sisters" in my congregation`s ( x2 ) who swore they were being raped by the demons and went to the Elders about it.
I've heard that one too, I think these sex deprived sisters trying to go along with the no sex before marriage thing and just had a man spend the night with them and out of guilt blamed it on the demons
I always thought there were demons at my old Hall, the Elders there were kind of creepy.
When my mom was disfellowshipped I kissed this girl from my hall (made out). I told my little brother and news got back to her uncle who was a elder. I got pulled into the back by myself when I was 13 and talked to by a brother who said "we need to have a talk soon". My mom left the meeting early, but when I got home and told her what happened (I didn't realise the wrong, that the brother should have went to my mom first) she already knew what happened. She never made me go to the elders meeting because all we did was kiss nothing else. But my friend got her privileges taken away because she was a pioneer but not baptized yet or something like that.
"We had a sister who was a demon-buster in our cong."- sparrowdown
I think you must have known my mother. She had a hand in demon-busting for awhile. In one case, she traveled out of state to help an old bible study of hers that was under 'relentless demon attack'. Just my luck, she brought me with her. She even called the Elder's to a meeting and explained what she was doing and how they should be the ones helping her. At any rate, we stayed the night in her house. Apparently, a 48 year old woman and a 16 year old boy were too much for Satan and his demons. They never showed up that night. Come to find out later on, the real issue came to light. Her much younger husband was having an affair with her 14 year old daughter.
Wow sparky! Mystery solved then. The real "demon" was the toyboy husband and JW bitches be crazy.
I've heard a story of a real exorcism not from a JW. Kinda nuts but it sounded legit like the movie minus alot of the head spinning. Supposedly they stopped knowing the demon would try to kill her while leaving the body so they had her committed or something like that. The story was told to me by a women who heard it from the pastors wife who helped her husband with it. She said the pastors wife told her that on one of many sessions the possed lady would be hitting on the pastor or his wife saying some really dirty stuff.