1. Leaka
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    Leaka Creative Mettle

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    How Accurate

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Leaka, Dec 18, 2008.

    All right this is a stored idea for later, but I wanted to know how accurate would this situation be?
    Is it even possible?
    The story idea, which is stored away:
    Basically its this three person family, you have a mother, a father, and the daughter. The family, well the mother and father, aren't exactly religious, but the daughter, who is nine, has become almost brainwashed into Christianity.
    Now the father is suffering from a mental illness, he's a bit paranoid, cannot tell reality from unreality, and a lot of other stuff.
    The daughter on the other hand believes her father to be possessed. And she begins all different ways to exorcise her father. And sometimes her exorcism comes at a price nearly killing him sometimes because she is so sucked into to the religious thing.

    How accurate is that?
    Is it possible?
    Would I have to read the Bible or anything else? [I've watched alot of documentaries on exorcism]
     
  2. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    If you're going to write about Christianity, it would be a good idea to read some of the Bible, just to get your facts right.
     
  3. Leaka
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    Leaka Creative Mettle

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    Well I have read 3 different Bibles?
    Problem is most Bibles contradict another Bible in some way.
     
  4. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    How so?
     
  5. Leaka
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    Leaka Creative Mettle

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    I would have to whip the bibles out and write down examples.
    But they did seem to contradict themselves.
    But do I really need to know everything about the Bible?
    The story is about the parents being the main character and not the daughter.
    So wouldn't I just have to know what verses they use for exorcism?
     
  6. captain kate
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    captain kate Active Member

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    It's not so much that they 'contradict' each other as much as the word choice by the different translations. I have a King James Version, a New American Standard and a New International Version bible in my possession and none really contradict each other as much as the wording is different.
     
  7. Leaka
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    Leaka Creative Mettle

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    All I know is its hard for me to understand Christianity and the Bible.
    Maybe this isn't such a good idea.
     
  8. jwilder
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    jwilder Member

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    Ditto captain kate. Different versions of the Bible are translated differently, but they don't really contradict. The literal interpretation depends on the word choice of the translator. We have at least six random Bibles in our home, all different translations and versions. Some are almost word-for-word the same, others are slightly different, but they don't contradict each other.

    Every religion has different procedures for exorcisms. What branch of Christianity is your character drawn to? Catholicsm? Methodist? Episcopalian? Non-denominational? Figure that out, then make a quick call to a local church and explain to the receptionist what kind of information you want. Ask to speak with a priest or minister, and do a quick 5-minute interview. Or, do some thorough online and library researching to make sure you're presenting the methods accurately. It really pisses Christian denominations off when you start mixing up their methods. :)

    And to answer your question, yes, it is possible to be so immersed in a religious belief that your actions because of that belief can kill you - or someone else. The modern world is a prime example of that.
     
  9. Leaka
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    Leaka Creative Mettle

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    What is the major branch of Christianity?
    Cause I use the on everyone is so into.
     
  10. AnonyMouse
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    AnonyMouse Contributing Member Contributor

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    The Catholic church is probably the one most often associated with exorcism, but I don't know the details of that. If you're trying to do it the way the church does it, you should certainly do research.

    But you don't necessarily need to be an expert on the subject to write a story of this sort. The funny thing about religious fanatics (or any fanatical sect) is that they often lose sight of their true goal. It's very possible that your MC ignores much of the Bible, and blindly focuses on a few passages. That's the trouble with the Bible (or any ancient religious texts like it). The passages are open for interpretation. Depending on who you ask, the Bible can mean a lot of different things; for some people, it's absolutely meaningless; for others, it means the world.
     
  11. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    aside from all that bible stuff, you idea makes no sense, imo...

    how could the child become brainwashed, if her parents aren't even religious?

    how could a 9-year-old even begin to do that?... how could she know how, in the first place, and how could she control a grown man, in able to exorcise him?
     
  12. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    You spoke my mind, mamma.
    I REALLY, REALLY HATE 'Demon Kid' kind of stuff--it was done to death with 'The Exocist' 'The Omen' etc. (Now you'll tell me: No, it's due for a revival.)

    How about the daughter is a bit older, maybe 13-15? At this age, kids can do some really crazy things (weary parent of teenagers speaks here). It seems much more feasible to me that at this age, she could try to be the opposite of her parents, starting out as a teen protest then maybe developing into something fanatical and scary.

    BUT--It's very daring of you to attempt a subject you don't know much about. I stick with stuff I can relate to/have experienced/have investigated over the years, myself.
    Good luck!
     
  13. tehuti88
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    tehuti88 Contributing Member

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    I ditto what the others have said regarding such a little girl attempting exorcism. From what little I know of it, Catholic exorcism, at least, is performed by qualified professionals only after a long period of various sorts of testing to make certain the subject is really possessed and is not merely suffering some sort of psychological or physical problem. There are LOTS of rules involved. It's hard to imagine a little girl attempting it, much less having the knowledge to attempt it.

    That's not saying it can't be done--especially taking into account the advice offered earlier that not all religious zealots fully follow proper church doctrine (if you're mad with religion, you won't necessarily wait for the priests to arrive and do their thing!)--but I'd really advise you to study this a lot more before attempting anything.

    And yes, I too am puzzled as to how the girl ended up brainwashed if her parents didn't do it. Who else had watch over her? Other relatives? Why didn't the parents notice what was happening to their daughter? Why did the father get paranoid? Etc. etc.

    It could work out, but it needs lots of mulling over. If you "don't/can't understand" the subject you're writing about, well, you'll have to try to understand it. I find it kind of troubling that you don't know the branches of Christianity or even the one you're writing about.
     
  14. TWErvin2
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    TWErvin2 Contributing Member Contributor

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    I my response would mirror much of what has been said. If you know almost nothing about Christianity and the Bible, then either do a lot of research or select a religion that you know about. Your profile lists Wiccan, so use that in some fashion, if possible. I am not well versed on it, so maybe it would not work for your project, but I suppose one could get 'brainwashed' into it just as well as Christianity--if that's part of the story.

    If you don't know about subject, it's difficult to write. It's like trying to write historical fiction (say about WW II) but never having studied it, and only picked up in passing (via conversation or maybe a movie on the topic here and there) and then trying to write about someone participating or living through an aspect of the war (such as the Normandy Invasion). Knowing the technology (specific weapons, vehicles, communications) leaders and military alliances/structure, tactics, all of that and more.

    The same is required of your effort here. So, as was indicated, pick something you know, or expect to do a lot of research.

    Terry
     
  15. Leaka
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    Leaka Creative Mettle

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    Um...
    The father was born mentally unstable, but the mother liked his unworldly stories, she enjoyed his interesting behavior.
    Though they married in their teens, I guess her mother was trying to rebel against her parent by marrying probably the most unstable person in the world.
    I have a church in my neighborhood, I'm going to ask them about stuff.
    I know the branches of Christianity, but I don't know the one the majority are in.
    Yeah, but a 9 year old girl would make more sense then a teenager. Because she doesn't have the knowledge, she may not understand her father's mental issue.
    By the time you are in your teens you should probably understand what a mental illness is and what possession is.
    That wouldn't be plausible enough.
    And as I said before this is going to be in the point of view of the mother. So the little girl isn't the MC.
    And the father's mother is heavily religious. She believed her son was possessed as well. She fed the little girl the stories of how her father is possessed with demons and how he is a demon. Her grandmother for a long time abused her child with religion, she wouldn't believe the doctors when they said he was mentally ill or even the priest and she began to break all the rules of Christianity.
    Like there is white magic and black magic.
    Black Christianity.

    @TWervin: Wiccan is protection magic. Its witchcraft, but protection magic. To exorcise someone is in the realm of black and white magic something Wiccan isn't.
    All we do is protection spellcraft, but of course with have deities of nature as well.
    Its nature that give us spells to protect people or ourselves.
     
  16. goldhawk
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    goldhawk Senior Member

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    Wicca is not a form of Christianity. In it, there is no sin, no saviour (nothing to be saved from), no devil, no evil, no possession. If you do something bad, it's because of poor judgement, not "the devil made me do it." I don't see how it can be used in a story of demon possession.

    For a very brief introduction to unfamiliar religions, check out Religious Tolerance.org. And, as with everything on the web, don't accept it as the final and complete word on the subject; it is only the starting place for your research.

    In addition to the daughter, you must determined the details of the parents. What exactly does the father have? Is his problem physiological or psychotic? Perhaps both? Or is he really possessed by a demon? And the mother, why is she overlooking her husband's problem? If her daughter noticed something is wrong, why didn't she? Why is she detached from reality?
     
  17. lordofhats
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    lordofhats Contributing Member

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    The only versions of bibles I think you'll find in contradiction of each other are probably the King James editions and the Orthodox bibles against ever other major version (I'm sure there are other minor versions in contradiction but I only know about Orthodox, KJ, International, and the typical Catholic editions). The contradictions however tend to be minor and are mostly caused by translation differences (or in the case of King James outright translation errors).

    I'm gonna agree about the kid exorcism thing. How does a nine year old with no religious parents become brainwashed? Possible solutions: Maybe she has a grandparent who is really religious or an aunt or uncle she spends a lot of time with. For her to actually attempt an exorcism herself this person who taught her would need to be one cold hard fanatical zealot: and I'm talking religion to the point of absolute insanity.

    The big problem would be how she would know how to do an exorcism. The only major branches of christianity who recognize such rituals are the Roman Catholic and Angelican churches (some protestant groups recognize it but there are so many of them I can really name them). It's a big thing and i know that the Catholic church rarely grants one after their insanely intense battery of tests to prove to themselves it's a possession and not a mental illness or someone faking it. The training for priests in the area is intense and the actual rituals aren't public knowledge (contrary to popular belief). How would she find out about it?

    Of course if you're going for a sort of horror feel and everyone in the family is nutsy crazy I suppose it's not much of a problem. Maybe the little girl (I think it would be more believable if she were older, maybe 14-16) just watched a bunch of horror movies and went postal or something.
     
  18. Leaka
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    Leaka Creative Mettle

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    Answers in bold.
    Posted this before you guys asked those questions.
     
  19. TWErvin2
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    TWErvin2 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Leaka,

    As I said, I don't know a lot about Wiccan

    From this statement, it did not seem that the girl would play a big part...and that the exorcism wasn't major...just that she was 'brainwashed' and doing something way out of line and harmful to her father--it being just one small episode in the longer narrative of the story. As such, something other than an attempted exorcism could be used in place, something that you know more about. You mention white and black magic, etc. Being 'brainwashed' into a following that is not of the white side could work--but maybe not depending on the whole storyline you have devised.

    But if you want to run with Christianity being a part of the 'brainwashing', I agree with what has been said, that nine is a bit young for 'brainwashing' to occurn within the circumstances set out, the depth of knowledge and conviction and ability to do actual harm, etc. required.

    But what is being described (or possibly by appearances) is that the girl -- contact with religious grandmother, etc...the girl does play a big role or part and her actions appear pivotal. Maybe, maybe not as this is just the focus of the discussion.

    If it is a small scene or section, the depth of knowledge necessary to do a convincing job to for the reader is much less than if this is a major thread woven into the story plot.

    Good luck with your project as you move forward.

    Terry
     
  20. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    makes no sense... one can be born with a damaged brain or with down's syndrome, but that's not the equivalent of 'mentally unstable' which can only develop over time, well after birth...
     
  21. Leaka
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    Leaka Creative Mettle

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    Schizophrenia.
    Some of the cases have a role in genetics.
     
  22. lordofhats
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    lordofhats Contributing Member

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    Schizophrenics never have children, never form families, and I'm sure one would never get killed by a nine year old... A schizophrenic is fundamentally incapable of forming any deep human relationships so I find it unlikely one would have a wife and child.

    The genetics thing is debunked. At worst, it increases risk of becoming schizophrenic. More often than not it's been proven schizophrenics are almost universally the product of poor family environments and urban settings.

    Bipolar disorder might be closer to what you might want (and could even be used to explain the girls behavior but she'd have to be maybe five or six years older than nine for it to work).
     
  23. ArckAngel
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    You'd be surprised what a teenager that has been brainwashed all their life would believe. A grandmother so senile that believes her son has been possessed all her life, and the girl grew up mostly around her grandmother because her father can be uncontrollable? Just a thought.
     
  24. Leaka
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    Leaka Creative Mettle

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    Um Schizophrenia in males usually occurs around 20-28. If they married as teenagers both families the grandparents and the MC parents of the girl then it should be all right.

    @ArckAngel: I could see that reasoning.
     
  25. captain kate
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    captain kate Active Member

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    The catholic Church account for about 50% of all 'christians' in the world...so that is probably the 'dominant church.' However, as the other poster was saying, they are also the only one who practices Exorcisms officially...

    Most spiritual battles and exorcisims not only involve rites in them, but scripture is used against the evil forces. Generally ones that deal with the Mastery or Jesus Christ over everything-including Satan.

    If you want to know more, just drop me a PM and I will try to explain what I know. I've been to two opposite ends of the spectrum college-wise. I've been to Liberty, a christian college heavily steeped in the bible, and ended up graduating from a state college..so I've seen both ends of the spectrum. Heck, my mother still comes to me for answers for her bible study classes due to the bible/theology classes i had to take at Liberty...
     

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