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witchcraft

From the Skeptical Literature: Thomas Ady on the Role of Mental Illness in Witchcraft Confessions (1655)

Cover of Ady's book A Candle in the Dark

Daniel Loxton shares and discusses a quote from a skeptical volume which was written three and a half centuries ago as an urgent effort to curb the bloodthirsty witch hunting mania.

13-04-17

In the small Ugandan village near the capital city of Kampala, a man named Ronald Kapungu had been accused of practicing witchcraft or hiring witch doctors to curse a nearby family. In this week’s eSkeptic, freelance reporter and travel writer, Justin Chapman, describes his experience at the witchcraft ceremony that he witnessed while covering the story with local journalist Luke Kagiri.

The Enemy Within

The term “witch-hunt” is used today to describe everything from political scandals to school board shake-ups. Long before the Salem witch trials, women and men were rounded up by neighbors, accused of committing horrific crimes using supernatural powers, scrutinized by priests and juries, and promptly executed. The belief in witchcraft — and the deep fear of evil it instilled in communities — led to a cycle of accusation, anger, and purging that has occurred repeatedly in the West for centuries…

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