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originally posted by: Astyanax
Belief in the Devil is what psychoanalysts call 'projection'. It betrays psychological naivety and a profound lack of self-knowledge.
The latter often arises from a justified fear of introspection. The believer is afraid to examine themselves rigorously because he or she is frightened of what might be discovered lurking within. Far safer to make up an imaginary fiend and project all one's aggressive, selfish and destructive behaviour on to it. 'The Devil made me do it.'
Like God, the Devil was a necessary invention.