"A Children's Book of Demons": a black bagic handbook for 5-10 years old?

A Children's Book of Demons

On 22 May 2019 the publishing house Koyama Press published a volume entitled "A Children's Book of Demons": in its 48 pages, in a playful and ironic key, we could find the illustrations of 72 demons, with their names, description and seal, a representative symbol capable of summoning the demon it is associated with, once drawn.
The intent of the author, Canadian illustrator and art director Aaron Leighton, is to entertain children first with reading of the devils specs and then with the evocation of them through the drawing of the symbols associated with them.

A Children's Book of Demons": a black bagic handbook for 5-10 years old-three_green_demons

The invocation of demons is presented as a fun way to solve everyday problems, such as housework, homework and bullies to get rid of: "Don't want to take out the trash tonight? Maybe you're swimming in homework? Perhaps that big bully is being a real drag? Well grab your colored pencils and sigil drawing skills and dial up some demons! This paranormal parody is filled to the brim with funny spirits more silly than scary! ".

Although it is clearly an innocent book because the reference to occult magic is just a pretext to involve the little readers in the playful activity that consists in coloring and drawing, its existence has aroused a lot of controversy: looking at the reviews and comments on the Amazon page where until recently it was possible to buy the volume is obvious that many users do not consider it an innocent pastime but a means to start children to occult practices.

An alleged conspiracy against the Christian faith

Especially for Catholic Christians, the existence of demons is not something to joke about and they are not fictional characters.
Not surprisingly, the International Association of Exorcists, which has been fighting for some time against "trends" inspired by Halloween, explaining how playing evocations can, even unintentionally, lead to phenomena of possession, argues that there is an attempt to propose Satanism to the new generations as a normal and healthy alternative to other cults.
The fact that Devil worship, limited to the simple celebration does not constitute, in fact, a crime and that it is considered as something harmless, would be symptomatic of a total lack of discernment between good and evil.

A Children's Book of Demons-witch_board

What in the case of "A Children's Book of Demons", according to the Church, is particularly serious, is that the author is aimed at a particularly defenseless and conditioned public aged between 5 and 10, presenting the demonic evocation as something positive, inviting children to ally with these entities to draw a personal account of them.
The offending volume would therefore represent a further stage of an obscure conspiracy that began in the 1970s, which by bringing the new generations closer to esotericism, relying on the fascination that the occult arts exert on young and very young people, aims to gradually arrive at the legitimacy of a real Luciferian cult.

"A Children’s Book of Demons" in a demented and goliardic way invites its readers to solve everyday problems by reproducing the seals of the demons to ask them for help: however, there are no formulas of evocation nor real symbols of the occult tradition, but only marks that remind them.

A Children's Book of Demons-Evil_Doll

The demons of the book, depicted in the classic style suitable for an audience of minors, are presented as harmless beings to be summoned easily to obtain some advantage: the problem lies in the fact that the first principle of true black magic is to invoke a demon and ask him a help.

Among the little devils present in the book, there are joking characters such as "Flatulus", whose talent is to give off gas, "Quazitoro", an expert in finding lost objects, "Spanglox", the fashion expert demon, but also "Corydon" whose name belongs to a pedophile shepherd in Virgil's Eclogues".
To evoke Corydon, who vaguely resembles Baphomet in features, including the hand sign "as above, so below", it is necessary to draw his seal with bright red color, preferably while giggling.
Another element strongly linked to occultism is contained precisely in the seals associated with the various demons and their resemblance to the real seals of the "Goetia", an ancient magical practice concerning the invocation and evocation of evil spirits.

Ars Goetia

The practice of Goetia, as it is known in modern esotericism, is mentioned in the seventeenth-century grimoire "Lemegeton Clavicula Salomonis" (The Lesser Key of Salomon The King) and explained in the first part of its five sections, which contains descriptions of the 72 demons evoked, according to tradition, by Solomon and confined by him in a bronze vase sealed with magical symbols forcing them to serve it.

A Children's Book of Demons_Goetia_sigils.png

The grimoire provides detailed practical instructions on how to build such a vessel and how to safely invoke such entities, which can be friendly, indifferent, or malicious.
In 1904 Aleister Crowley edited the publication of an English language edition of Ars goetia which constitutes one of the cornerstones of his popular magical system.


By satisfying the needs and desires of children, the book perhaps makes the extremely dark and complex world of ceremonial magic excessively accessible and turns it into a fun game. Is A Children's Book of Demons really yet another attempt to normalize black magic and Satanism among children or is it just plain the usual publicity stunt, which uses an intentional operation of "dubious taste" to get media attention?
From a rational and objective point of view, there is nothing terrible in this work which does not present either obscene or violent content. However, it was inevitable that the very idea of approaching, even if in a "playful" way and without any malice or ulterior motive, the theme of demons in childhood, brought with it inevitable criticism, fears and unpleasant consequences.

“This being true for the ordinary Universe, that all sense-impressions are dependent on changes in the brain we must include illusions, which are after all sense-impressions as much as “realities” are, in the class of “phenomena dependent on brain-changes.”

― S.L. MacGregor Mathers, Goetia the Lesser Key of Solomon the King: Lemegeton, Book 1 Clavicula Salomonis Regis

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Cover image by Royce Glance

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Article image4 by S.L. MacGregor Mathers and Aleister Crowley

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