Ignatius Loyola – “Father” of the Jesuits
Religious Conversion and Religious life
During his period of convalescence in 1521, Ignatius read a series of religious texts on the life of Jesus and on the lives of the saints; he became fired with an ambition to lead a life of self-denying labour and to emulate the heroic deeds of Francis of Assisi and other great monastics. He resolved to devote himself to the conversion of non-Christians in the Holy Land. Upon his recovery, he visited the Benedictine monastery, Santa Maria de Montserrat (March 25, 1522), where he hung his military garments before an image of the Virgin. He then traveled on foot to the town of Manresa (Catalonia) and spent several months in a cave nearby  where he practiced rigorous asceticism.
Asceticism (/əˈsɛtɪsɪzᵊm/; from the Greek: ἄσκησις áskēsis, “exercise” or “training”) describes a lifestyle characterized by abstinence from worldly pleasures, often for the purpose of pursuing spiritual goals. Many religious traditions, such as Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism advocate restraint with respect to actions of body, speech, and mind.
Ignatius also began experiencing a series of “visions” in full daylight while in hospital. These repetitive “visions” appeared as “a form” in the air near him and this “form” gave him much consolation because it was “exceedingly beautiful” … it somehow seemed to have the “shape of a serpent” and had many “things” that “shone like eyes”, but “were not eyes”. He received much delight and consolation from gazing upon this object … but when the object vanished he became disconsolate”.
Consolation – psychological comfort
So…what or…WHO did Ignatious Loyola see? Could it be…?
Ezekiel 28:13 KJV
13 Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every “precious stone” was thy “covering”, the sardius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle, and gold: the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou wast created.
Ezekiel 28:17 KJV
17 Thine heart was lifted up because of thy “beauty”, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy “brightness”: I will cast thee to the ground, I will lay thee before kings, that they may behold thee.
Genesis 3 KJV
3 Now “the serpent” was more “subtil” than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden
Revelation 12 KJV
9 And the “great dragon” was cast out, that “old serpent”, called the “Devil”, and “Satan”, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
Is is possible that what Loyola actually saw…was Satan himself? If that is true? Then actually…”spiritual” exercises and training are not a good thing. Not only that but quite the opposite aren’t they?
And people whose practice it is to do “spiritual” exercises or training? Pawns of Satan?
A couple of other things that I considered after I had written this article are: “One” is that Ignatius didn’t recoil in horror when he saw this vision. Quite the opposite…it pleased him somehow. “Two” Lucifer/Satan is least we forget…spectacular looking. Beautiful. God created him that way. “Three” is Eve didn’t react in horror E-I-T-H-E-R. I think that’s very important to note.
I had assumed (thought) wrongly that he, Lucifer/Satan was like some big bogey man. Though he and the fallen angels do entice people to do some pretty awful things. Every awful thing. From what may seem as small sins to humongous ones.
He’s no friend. First he entices people to sin, then..he accuses them to the Father. He is very subtle in it all.
This made me think of my cat…how…stealth he is, when catching his prey. Because I know what he’s up to it’s no surprise to me, but to the unsuspecting…creature…it’s death.
It is our job to tell the unsuspecting.
You know…Satan wanted to sift Peter like wheat. No less any one of us.
I had also wondered where Ignatius had went wrong. It would seem on the surface at least…that he was trying to do right, huh? After all… he was reading about Jesus. It’s from there though, that he takes a deadly detour…instead of emulating or following Jesus…he followed another person whom he held in higher regard than Jesus. Francis of Assisi.
Strange how, now in our time we have another “Francis” whom people hold in high regard too. In higher regard than Jesus? Sadly so…
But not all…