Conspiratorial demoniacs

If you believe the traditional Christian teaching that there are demons in the world, then you’ll probably think there are demons pestering people all over the place, tempting people of all different walks of life according to each person’s unique weaknesses.

But if there are demons anywhere, it seems to me, there are demons tormenting the angry, resolute conspiracy theorists.

I heard a podcast the other week that shared some of the voice messages that were left with politicians around the time of the so-called freedom convoy last year.

The ranting, the swearing, the threats, the accusations, the vileness, the imagery … it truly sounded like something out of a horror movie. That has nothing to do with “freedom”; they are people in chains of a terrible sort.

Many of these people are themselves no doubt sincere believers of a traditional sort. They would, no doubt, be horrified by the suggestion I’m making.

But for my part, now that I’ve seen it, I don’t think I’ll be able to unsee it.

I’ve spent a fair bit of time, these past few years, thinking of conspiracy theories as things with logical problems or revealing psychological or intellectual shortcomings. And those are important to perceive and to think through. But conspiracy theories are also something often indistinguishable from the diabolical, and it seems to me, that’s important to remember as well.

Conspiracy theorists, in all sincerity: beware. Be careful what you believe. Be careful what you amplify.

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