Black Magic inside Christianity: Satanic Magic
In the Deuteronomy, 18:11-12 condemns anyone who ‘castes spells or who is a spiritist or who consults the dead’ and Exodus 22:18 states ‘Do not allow a sorceress to live.’ These statements are suggestive enough of the biblical views on dark magic. But it’s important to note that these references are essentially taken from the Old Testament.
The New Testament is seemingly apologetic towards dark forces as long as they stick to a passive independence. Various Hebrew words have been found in several versions of the Bible over the years, for example the word Tanakh comes from Hebrew origins which means ‘to caste spells.’ Besides this there are various other sources pertaining to witchcraft which have seemingly had connections with Christianity.
Leviticus and Deuteronomy prohibit any form of magic or divination, but as Christianity is a descendant of Judaism, the teachings regarding magic existing in Judaism could never be entirely avoided. Especially in Early Christianity and in the medieval times, witch hunts were officially banned from the church, but it is a known fact that extensive witch hunts and executions were conducted by Papal authorities unofficially.
The Council of Paderborn had outlawed the belief in witches but the belief of Eastern Christians in witchcraft could not be totally repressed. Their beliefs gave way to practise which further spread among the Western Christians. During the emergence of modernism, witchcraft had been promoted as a legit phenomenon and it could not be officially prohibited. Also by that time a considerable number of people had started investing their faith in witchcraft and sorcery.
The underground witch hunts had lasted about 200 years and it gave way to rational thinking at the arrival of the modernist perspective. The ritual of witch hunting had been deemed as preposterous and thoughtless by the modernists and philosophers. This did not only upheld witchcraft in a neutral light, but this was the first time dark magic was not announced to be a sin and the sorcerers could live freely and fearlessly.
In the 15th century the Inquisitional courts had become very involved with the witch hunt sessions; this was the time when the contrast between white and dark magic came into focus. It was not any great news for the dark art practitioners but the knowledge among the people began to spread. The Spanish Inquisition famously pardoned the witches even though they did not see Jews in a positive light.
The Age of Enlightenment proclaims that witches and wizards possess powers which are not always decidedly harmful; it estimated that dark magic did not have to be fatal to the innocent and the ones nit involved with it. Killing practitioners mercilessly without a second thought is in a way, killing freedom and individual belief.
Martin Luther shared some views which steered the opinions on dark magic towards a relatively positive light. This does not mean that there was no disbelief. Of course the naysayers were plenty but at least the prohibition was not openly supported anymore and that spoke volumes about the new mind set.
When Christianity began expanding towards the East and Africa, there seemed to be a gradual assimilation of the Christian and witchcraft, which was though distant but not totally detached. The Church did not view dark magic as a satanic force anymore, but the prejudice was not diminished and they of course could not co-exist together but they attempted to sustain independently without having to do much in each other’s realm. On emergence of new religious movements, both the church and witchcraft gained in a way; the new traditions though devoted to Christianity did not abandon Wiccanism as a barbarous principle.
Modern Christian views does not denounce witchcraft as a communion with the devil; as the history has taught the institutions, opposing witchcraft in the wake of a rationalist environment was never a smart move. Thus, dark magic has been proclaimed as a simple supernatural spiritual talent and the biblical allusions, to prohibition of the dark arts have been successfully avoided so far.
A combination of Christianity and Wiccan is being successfully practised in the world today. The explanation of the dark magic is stated by the church as magic. No concrete comments on their alignment are being made of course. A careful co-existence is being attempted which looks forward to a successful and fruitful coalition.