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Inside the Legend: Faith

 

DON'T FEAR THE REAPER

“There’s only one thing that can give and take life like that- we’re dealing with a reaper”

Death as a living, sentient entity is a concept that has existed in all known societies since the beginnings of recorded history. The most common representation of death is that of modern European folk-lore: The Grimm Reaper a.k.a. Grimm Spectre of Death.

“Reapers stop time. You can only see them when their coming at you.”

REAPER LORE

“No, no, no. Not the reaper. A reaper. There’s reaper lore in pretty much every culture on Earth. They go by a hundred different names, it’s possible that there are more than one of them.”

In Breton mythology, the reaper takes on the form of Ankou, who is described as a tall man who wears a wide-brimmed hat and long coat. He is the one who collects the souls of the dead and aids them on their journey to the next world, in his old rickety cart pulled by four black horses. According to some Ankou was the first child of Adam and Eve. Some tales have it that he has two companions, who are skeletons in some versions, following behind his cart and tossing into it souls.

In Hindu mythology, the lord of death is called Yama and is one of the rulers of the eight sides. He rides a black buffalo and carries a rope lasso to carry the soul back to his abode. Here, all the accounts of the person's good and bad deeds are stored which allow him to decide where he has to reside, either in hell or heaven.

In Japanese mythology, death is personified as Enma, also known as Enma Ou and Enma Daiou. Enma rules the underworld, which makes him similar to Hades, and he decides whether someone dead goes to heaven or to hell. A common saying parents use in Japan to scold children is that Enma will cut off their tongue in the afterlife if they lie.

Judaism found the angel of death mentioned in Psalms lxxxix. 45, where the Targum translates: "There is no man who lives and, seeing the angel of death, can deliver his soul from his hand". By acts of benevolence the anger of the angel of death is overcome; when one fails to perform such acts the angel of death will make his appearance. The angel of death receives his order from God. As soon as he has received permission to destroy, however, he makes no distinction between good and bad.

Islam’s “angel of death” is 'Izrail, the English form of which is Azrael. He is charged with the task of separating and returning from the bodies the souls of people who are to be recalled permanently from the physical world back to the primordial spiritual world. This is a process whose aspect varies depending on the nature and past deeds of the individuals in question, and some suggest that Azrael is also accompanied by helpers or associates.

PUT A LITTLE FAITH IN YOUR HEART

“It is the lord who does the healing here friends, the lord who guides me in choosing who to heal by helping me see into people’s hearts.”

I am personally a believer in the paranormal and supernatural, but, like Dean, I am not a believer in faith healing. I also agree with Dean in that these “faith healers,” or at least most of them, are personally only interested in our wallets and less for our welfare.

Faith healing refers to healing that occurs supernaturally, as the result of prayer rather than the use of medicines or the involvement of physicians or other medical care. The notion that prayer, divine intervention or the ministrations of an individual healer can cure illness has been popular throughout history. The bible does show incidences of faith healing, but does not condemn, forbid, or even discourage the use of medicines or other proper medical care. Luke, who wrote the Gospel of Luke, was actually a doctor!

The belief in, and practice of, faith healing is found among: sincere Christians, pseudo-Christians, non-Christians, those involved in the occult, and con-artists. Over the years, there has been little to no evidence at all that faith healing actually works. However, there have been a number of documented cases in which people with serious diseases have died as a result of abandoning effective medical care after being "healed."

False teachings on faith healing vary from group to group. Many attribute all sickness to demonic activity and include exorcism as a tool of faith healing. Others, especially certain teachers associated with the word-faith movement, blame sickness on anything from unbelief to sin, and often tie promises of healing to slick pitches for financial contributions.

The most comprehensive examination of contemporary "healers" is James Randi's The Faith Healers. The book describes how many of the leading evangelistic healers have enriched themselves with the help of deception and fraud. Randi's most noteworthy experience was the unmasking of Peter Popoff, an evangelist who would call out the names of people in the audience and describe their ailments. Popoff said he received this information from God, but it was actually obtained by confederates who mingled with the audience before each performance. Pertinent data would be given to Popoff's wife, who would broadcast it from backstage to a tiny receiver in Popoff's ear. After recording one of Mrs. Popoff's radio transmissions, Randi exposed the deception on the Johnny Carson Show.

Christian Science is probably the best known religious sect that favors prayer over medical care. It is the only form of faith healing that is deductible as a medical expense for federal income tax purposes. Christian Science contends that illness is an illusion caused by faulty beliefs, and that prayer heals by replacing bad thoughts with good ones. Christian Science practitioners work by trying to argue the sick thoughts out of the person's mind.

HOUSE OF THE LORD

I have just seen the episode "House vs. God", for the hit Fox show HOUSE. The episode also deals with a faith healer. This time, however the faith healer is a fifteen year old boy. Discussed in this episode is another reason why some "miracles" may occur.

The Set-Up: A fifteen year old claims to be a faith healer. He has "saved" people in the past, as seen in the 'teaser' for the episode. He falls ill and believes that this illness is the work of God. While at the hospital, the 'faith healer' encounters a woman dieing of cancer and 'heals' her. Her tumor heals, but not permanently. There may be another reason for this- a medical reason.

Episode Dialogue:
"For 200 years, there have been reports of wild viruses the target tumors. Early 1900s, an Italian medical journal wrote up a woman with cervical cancer who was injected with a weak strain of rabies. I have no idea why they did it, but her tumor shrank. One of the virus types most prone to go after cancer cells is Herpes encephalitis."

This is furthered with:

"The only way you could have transmitted it is by scratching one of your sores and touching another person"

To Conclude...
Kind of makes you think how many other people, like this, there could be out there. Those who have herpes and suddenly attain a gift of "healing," thus not knowing the scientifical cause, chalk it up to being a blessing from God to become a 'faith healer'. I don't know if any other viruses could lead to a similar result, but found this fact very interesting because it could explain a portion of some of the supposed 'faith healers' in the world today.

RAWHEAD

So, what exactly were Sam and Dean hunting at the beginning of the episode? Well, turns out that the ghoul that caused Dean a heart failure is a rawhead. A rawhead is an Irish sort of Boogeyman that is said to live by the pipes under the sink, and to drown naughty children and reward the good. He is covered all over with matted hair, has flat blue eyes, lives in dark cupboards, and is rumored to have a crouching form like a rock.

 

TAROT CARDS

“A tarot dates back to the early Christian years, right? When some priests were still using magic and a few of them veered into the dark stuff, Necromancy, and how to push death away, how to cause it.”

A special system of fortune telling using a special pack of seventy-eight cards that consists of four suits of fourteen cards together with twenty two picture cards.

NECROMANCY

The practice of attempting to communicate with the spirits of the dead in order to predict or influence the future.

BLACK MAGIC

“So Roy’s using dark magic to bind the reaper”

Black Magic is magic attempted for evil purposes, calling upon evil spirits or the devil.

 

 

MAYBE IT'S TIME FOR A LITTLE FAITH

The Reaper

Death Representations

Times Up

Faith Healing

Black Magic

 

By Dean5339

 

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