Random shit for Friday (#triggerwarning: #demons)
I had this nuts dream last night. Some of it’s since faded, but here go some essentials. In this world, I was working in IT, something like working at an Apple store. For some reason, I was off for a couple of days and the store was under renovation. I wanted to help out so I called in and said I’d come clean up or whatever. I was strongly advised not to. They said they had it under control. I asked what the problem was.
“There’s a demon.”
They explained that a demon was hanging out in the store while the renovations were going on. They had minimal employees there to take care of what the business needed, but other than that, all personnel were to stay away.
I couldn’t believe it. I said I’d stop by. They demanded that I not. I didn’t listen because in this world, I gave a shit about my day job.
I arrive at the mall-ish location of the store. Right away, I feel a bad vibe. Something’s seriously fucked up in the store, but not in any readily observable way. I just “feel it.”
As I reach the store entrance, I definitely smell something. It’s not as strong as sulfur or anything stupid like that, but it definitely smells like something unwashed, unclean. I poke my head in. At first, the entire floor and some of the walls are drenched in blood.
This has surprisingly little effect on me.
I recognize actors Fred Armisen and C.S. Lee, both in some kind of HAZMAT (sp?) suits both cleaning up and building things. I see right away, too, that the site is under construction.
Then I hear the voice.
It humorously sounds like the same stupid voice every horror movie depicts. It’s low. It’s gravelly. It’s inhuman. It says some shit about destroying souls or devouring them or something along those lines because I guess my unconscious brain can’t come up with anything better than tired horror-movie cliches.
I ask the guys if that’s some kind of mechanical, digial, over-a-PA sort of effect. They say no, the voice is coming from nowhere, no identifiable source, it’s been going on and off all day, and it keeps saying this kind of stuff.
This is where it happens.
For a moment I realize, shit, everything Christianity and Judaism has said is true. There are demons. There is a Hell. There is a war between the light and dark with humans caught in the middle. And in this brief, in-dream moment, I believe it all. Truly. Sincerely.
Then my instinct for adaptation kicks in. I figure, okay, there are demons. I need to figure out what to do next, possibly to survive. Luckily, this didn’t turn out to be a nightmare. (Thus it also turns out to be anti-climactic.) Just as Armisen and Lee seemed not to be concerned other than the immediate annoyance of the demon, it seemed my safety wasn’t in question.
I soon woke up.
As I was coming to, I remembered that this wasn’t the first time since losing my faith that I’d reassessed. When I went to see the Magic Cloak in Mexico, the one on which the image of the Virgin allegedly miraculously appeared, I read some pamphlet that claimed that scientific tests had been run on the cloak and had concluded that no physical means not only had been used to create the image, but also could have been used. For one brief moment, I thought, “Holy shit. The Catholics got it right. There’s a God and blah blah, bullshit bullshit.” Then I thought, “Wait a minute. Why’d God do it this way? Why bother putting some stupid chick’s image on some stupid guy’s cloak?” And so on. I also realized that claims of scientific tests and their conclusions weren’t evidence thereof. Though I’ve never since confirmed it, I suspect that if not outright made up, all that the pamphlet said was at least… distorted.
I’m not trying to say that believing is in itself bad. These two moments of self-reflection could’ve just as easily ended with my return to faith. What is important, though, is the skeptical aspect. That I didn’t just accept what the pamphlet said. That I did realize I was dreaming and, even if in the dream it all seemed real, demons seeming real doesn’t make them real.