An interview between Catholic Daily Wire host Michael Knowles and exorcist Fr. Dan Reehil is making the rounds, and it is quite fascinating. Like all interviews with exorcists, Reehil told Knowles some of the usual stories you might expect to hear during a chat with an exorcist.
Anecdotes of tiny women demonstrating preternatural strength and possessed people speaking in ancient languages were shared, and Fr. Reehil gave a bunch of advice on how to avoid demonic influence.
The episode is titled “I saw her crawl up the wall,” which is a reference to one of the stories he told about a woman literally climbing the wall like a lizard during a spiritual deliverance conference. It should be noted that the conference was not attended by parkour practitioners or Jackie Chan.
Orthodox. Faithful. Free.
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Of course, if you have listened to interviews with exorcists, then you have likely heard stories like these. And if that is the case, it may seem like a bit of “old news.”
About 30 minutes into the interview, the two shared stories about alleged instances of demons, or at least demonic-inspired entities, speaking through or using AI (artificial intelligence) to frighten or influence users.
Knowles told Reehil about a famous “AI demon” that has been reappearing over and over to users across the globe. It appears that out of seemingly nowhere, a feminine demon called Loab has been scaring users by saying egregious things and producing indescribably heinous images.
Fr. Reehil told Knowles about a TikTok video that went viral where a seeming AI demon told a user that he was a Nephilim and the son of Satan.
Could this all be an elaborate hoax? Sure, it is possible, but we can at least count it as another reason to not use TikTok; you know, besides the 50 zillion other reasons not to.
We should consider what it might mean if demons could speak through AI, whether that be through ChatGPT—or is it Chat C3PO, I never can tell—and if such a thing is even possible.
First, we should consider if AI mechanisms could even be considered candidates for any sort of demonic infestation.
According to a helpful post from Catholic Answers on how demons could attach themselves to an object, it seems that demonic infestation of material things or places is, in fact, possible.
The author of the post, apologist Tom Nash, wrote: “Only people can be demonically possessed. But inanimate objects can be negatively controlled through curses.”
He went on to cite a resource on hauntings, possessions, and exorcisms and added:
A curse is simply a demon sent to do some harm…. Cursed objects are objects that have had the opposite of a blessing done to them. Instead of grace being attached to an object to make it holy, a demon has been attached to the object to make it associated with evil.
“Through the permission of the one who has rights over an object, a demon attaches itself to the object and inflicts harm through it,” he continued.
This is likely easy enough to understand for most Catholics, as we should understand that priests say exorcism prayers over water to make Holy Water, as well as oils, candles, and homes when they do house blessings or exorcisms.
But, could this apply to AI?
Well, I think it is possible.
I say this because the internet, and by extension other computing activities like AI, is a physical thing. Sure, we catch our Wi-Fi signals in an invisible way, but that signal is not an ethereal magic trick like telepathy. There are waves and frequencies that can be measured and caught, and they operate within the physical limits of space. In addition, we know that certain thickly-walled rooms of cement or stone are often barriers to signals which cannot pass through them easily.
I don’t understand the inner mechanisms of how internet signals work, but I do know a bit about sound technology, and we know that sound is created from a physical source and is measured by material instruments.
In addition, the internet does not begin in the ether but comes from wired material servers that are tethered to physical things, powered by electricity, and dependent on supercomputers. So, even if we doubt that something demonic could pass through Wi-Fi, we will have to admit that the objects that produce internet activity could be cursed and a demon could attach itself to it and do harm through it.
Is it possible for demons to infiltrate into the ones and zeros that make up the codes that generate our images and videos? Personally, I must at least consider the possibility that it might be true.
Now, before we lose our cool and start throwing out all our devices and yelling out spiritual warfare prayers while we light our smartphones on fire—which might not be a bad idea for some people!—we should also not obsess over demonic things.
On the one hand, we should be diligent and careful about demonic influence. But on the other hand, we should not live in a state of fear or extreme paranoia and view demonic influence like an elementary student views cooties or a Democrat views Covid.
Fr. Reehil explained in the interview that obsession with the demonic is not a good thing; and ironically, if someone were to continually fear the demonic in a way that caused fear and anxiety, this would be a win for the demons.
The Church recognizes that demonic infestation is possible even for infants, which is why priests traditionally say exorcism prayers over babies when they are baptized. But, after baptism, parents are not supposed to leave the Church with their kids in spiritual bubble wrap as if demons could sneak back in at any moment.
A life of sacraments and prayer is a perfectly fine way to avoid shaking hands with a Nephilim.
Given the proximity to St. Patrick’s Day, we would do well in considering the great saint and how he operated among the mega-demonic Druids.
If we look at his Breastplate prayer, we see that the prayer contains lines about spiritual warfare—and more than the famous lines of “Christ before me, Christ behind me.”
In the prayer, we find:
I summon today
All these powers between me and those evils,
Against every cruel and merciless power that may oppose my body and soul,
Against incantations of false prophets,
Against black laws of pagandom,
Against false laws of heretics,
Against craft of idolatry,
Against spells of witches and smiths and wizards,
Against every knowledge that corrupts man’s body and soul
St. Patrick knew that there were literally wizards and witches casting spells against him during his missionary work, but he understood rightly that the “mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity” was sufficient to repel any devilry.
Patrick is not the patron saint of the Internet, but invoking his wisdom if we come across Chat C3PO might not be a bad idea.