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Spiritual Warfare In Demonic Encounters

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Chapter Summary

Spiritual Warfare was a key dynamic in medieval spirituality, and didactic vision accounts were important in setting forth the rules of engagement for battle both during one’s life and on one’s deathbed. In examining the didactic visions of demons, this chapter looks first at the enemy and its attacks, and then at the counterattacks by the visionary. This involves studying the demonology that the visions illustrated and then at the methods that they implicitly advocated for medieval Christians to employ when dealing with the demons. Kors and Peters argue that the shift in attitudes towards the Devil came in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries through the writings of the scholastics. Saints and laypeople who encountered demons in the stories successfully used various formulae that Kors and Peters mention were considered to be “weak and ineffectual” by Europeans.

Keywords: demons; didactic vision; medieval spirituality; spiritual warfare



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