"To work it out I let them in
All the good guys and the bad guys that I've been
All the devils that disturbed me and the angels that defeated them somehow
Come together in me now"
--Paul Williams; Phantom of the Paradise, "Phantom's Theme"
I was in high school when Linda Blair was freaking the world out in The Exorcist. I saw the movie at a drive in with some friends. Not being a Catholic I didn't get what all the fuss was over. Okay, the scene where Linda Blair abuses herself with a crucifix was kind of disturbing, but I didn't go into convulsions like the press was reporting that many movie goers were after viewing the film.
Watching The Exorcist was the first time I'd ever heard about exorcism though. Since then, I've seen tons of movies and read many books in which people are possessed by demons and have had to go through an exorcism to expel the demon ( or demons depending how popular the possessed person is) from their bodies.
I don't literally believe in demonic possession. But in a metophorical sense, I believe we could all use a little daily exorcism to get rid of our demons. Or maybe we need a ritual that helps us embrace our demons. Or accept them. Or just recognize them for what they are. Because I think I have met my demons and they are me.
Now before you suggest I get fitted for a straightjacket (44 regular if you must), I'm just pointing out that instead of looking for a demon to blame all of your faults, woes, misfortunes and bad behaviour on, perhaps you can just look in a mirror and acknowledge that maybe, just maybe there is no outside source to blame. There is no devil, it's not your mother's fault, the government isn't conspiring against you and you weren't cursed for ripping those tags off the bottom of your mattress years ago.
It kind of points back to my discussion about Yin and Yang last month. What makes us "us" is that delicate balance between angels and devils. We are all good and bad. Even saints sometimes leave the toilet seat up. And I bet even devils sometimes help old ladies cross the street.
So maybe instead of a daily exorcism of our demons, we should exercise both our demons and our angels. It's the only way they can learn to play nice together.