Q: What is a demon exactly?
You know that whisper in your ear, that one that tells you to do things that you know are wrong? The things that cause shadenfreude or the things that give you that sneering side smirk and sneaky little heh heh heh feeling in your belly?
That’s what a demon is.
I also think that vampire stories are largely about demons. Being invited into a “home” and having your life slowly drained out of your body until you are left feeding on others. When I was sick, I was also a severely selfish, nasty, viper-mouthed, tantrum-throwing brat. Everything light and pure and good about me was siphoned out and replaced with darkness and hardness and cruelty. It took a long, long time to work that poison out of my body.
You don’t have to believe in demons for them to believe in you. They live on anyone’s sadness, fear, rage, selfishness and self-hatred. The weaker you are, the more you give them, and the more they want to take. It’s why people who are depressed are shown to be shrouded in shadows, in black smoke, in thick oil.
I’m not saying that everyone who is sad or a jerk is “possessed” by demons, by any means. But I am saying that they are out there, and they’re constantly trying to encourage people to do the wrong thing. That’s why it feels so easy. That’s why sleep paralysis often has the same themes, even for people who know nothing about them before experiencing them. Everyone knows what evil looks like. We just pretend that we don’t.