Overlooking the Most Elementary, Logical, Common-Sense Solution to the Case of Annabelle, the Allegedly-Demonic Doll
By Ken K. Gourdin
All of the paranormal investigators, priests, and laypeople reportedly involved in the case of “Annabelle, The Demonic Doll” (my appellation) seem to have overlooked the most elementary, common-sense solution to all of the chaos she seemingly has fomented. I said as much when I commented on this account of the goings-on involving Annabelle located here (last accessed today):
I don’t quite understand the point of holding on to a doll that reportedly has been at the center of so many paranormal incidents: “We have a dangerous doll in our apartment. Really; come and see.” And, “You can keep the doll, but we’d better perform an exorcism in your apartment.” And, “This doll is dangerous; we’d better take her home with us.” And, “We have a dangerous doll in our paranormal museum. Really; come and see.” Et cetera. Yes, I understand that the problem is not, strictly speaking, the doll: the problem is the spirits/presences that have inhabited the doll. But in light of all of this, wouldn’t the sensible thing be to get rid of it?
Update, September 14, 2014: This post called to mind this exchange on Mormon Dialogue and Discussion, some excerpts of which follow (last accessed today): http://www.mormondialogue.org/topic/58972-exorcism/. In response to a query about a possible association between demonic possession or influence and mental illness, I said:
I think, perhaps, that mental illness can make one more prone to the Adversary’s influence (while such experience has not involved possession, I have personal experience with this). I would not, however, conflate mental illness with possession by or influence of the Adversary. They are two different things, even though they might be related in some cases and in some ways. I know two things: (1) I know the Adversary is real; and (2) I know that almost any being who has a body ultimately has (or at least can have) power over one who does not. I don’t have any reason to doubt any of these accounts. I have never, to the best of my knowledge, met anyone who has shared such an account on this thread, but I have no reason to believe that these people are not reasonably sane, reasonably well-adjusted, reasonably intelligent individuals. If they tell me that [x] happened, then I have little reason to doubt that [x] happened. I believe that there was a war in Heaven, and that the battle begun there continues here. That said, while Satan and his minions may have power to bruise my heel, I have power to crush their heads (along with, as I said, most anyone who has a body).
In response to another poster who expressed skepticism regarding the incidents discussed on the thread, I said:
Skepticism can be just as much a tool of the Adversary as can deliberately doing things that leave one vulnerable to his influence. You probably think that your skepticism renders you invulnerable to having such experiences, when in fact the opposite is true. And the problem is that by the time you recognize this, it may be too late for you to do anything about it (“Hey, maybe there is something to the accounts of these types of experiences after all”). Nephi [in the Book of Mormon] describes you perfectly. [In 2 Nephi 28:22, he writes]:
“And behold, others he flattereth away, and telleth them there is no hell; and he saith unto them: I am no devil, for there is none—and thus he whispereth in their ears, until he grasps them with his awful chains, from whence there is no deliverance.”
I prefer my approach, previously stated, which I believe accomplishes two things, (a) recognizing reality, while (b) not being unduly fearful or preoccupied that such a reality exists: (1) I know the Adversary is real; (2) I know that the battle (perhaps a better word would be the effort) he began in the premortal life to try to win the souls of men continues here on earth; and (3) I know that any being with a body has (or can have) power to triumph over any being without one.
While I don’t favor your approach to things spiritual, and while we fundamentally disagree, nevertheless, I wish you well.