(Latin: diabolus, the devil)

The term includes all kinds of intercourse or attempts to deal with the evil spirit by witchcraft, incantations, magic, spiritism, and other occult practises. The possibility of consulting and securing the help of the devil is sufficiently attested by Scripture: God forbids consultation of soothsayers (Deuteronomy 18); to "go aside after wizards" is unlawful (Leviticus 19). Witchcraft, real or alleged, has brought misfortune and cruelty into the world; many phenomena of spiritism, or spiritualism, hear unmistakable characteristics of maleficent spiritual agencies. The Church as well as the Bible warrants the belief in evil spirits, or devils, and in their power, as far as God will permit, to do harm, but forbids dealing with them, since, by reason of the perversion of their wills, they endeavor to turn men from God. Hence, the use of the planchette, the ouija board, etc., is forbidden. What is known as white magic is merely sleight-of-hand, or prestidigitation, and involves no offense against the moral law.

New Catholic Dictionary

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