Nuns and Nuclear Security
One of his favorite films, Martin Scorsese says he cries every time he watches it. Another element sometimes found in nun movies is the conflict between the spirit and the flesh.
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The prime example would be Black Narcissus , an erotically-charged British psychological drama starring Deborah Kerr and Kathleen Byron as the leaders of a small group of Anglican nuns sent to a remote Himalayan outpost to establish a school and infirmary in an abandoned brothel. The sensuality of their exotic environment and the disturbing presence of a handsome British agent lead to harrowing outcomes.
Kerr begins to dwell on a romance she had as a young woman before entering the convent, and Byron loses it completely in all-stops-out, sex-starved insanity. Sister Agnes Meg Tilley is a novice who gives birth to a baby under mysterious circumstances. The baby is found dead and a court-appointed psychiatrist Jane Fonda is sent to investigate.
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The movie was adapted by John Pielmeier from his own play. Another genre of nun movies that emerged in the s — as Vatican II was taking hold and beginning to modernize the Catholic Church — was that of the madcap, fun-loving nun. The Trouble with Angels is a comedy that starred Hayley Mills as a rambunctious student at a Catholic boarding school under the thumb of Mother Superior Rosalind Russell.
When nuns take their vows, they go through a similar sort of ceremony however they can choose from either male or female saints.
The ultimate decision is made by the Pioress head nun in their order, whether she will grant them their chosen name or assign them another one. We did ours sophomore year of high school! That is the norm in California. Ayyy, I was Catherine at my confirmation, the one from the list. Sisters are often given a new name once they become nuns.
I think it's a sign of rebirth and beginning new. The head nun or abbess or whoever the nun in charge is called at the particular convent chooses the name based on making the new, fresh nun even better.
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That's what I was taught at Catholic School. Instead, the demon is described as a child with angel wings that rides on a two-headed dragon. This is depicted in the Valak image above. One of the most notable mentions of Valak is in the midth century goetic grimoire The Lesser Key of Solomon , which draws on materials from a couple centuries prior. The book's name comes from the fact that the demons focused on are ones that, according to legend, were summoned by the Biblical figure King Solomon.
The which he will bring unto the Exorciser without any Force or Strength being by him employed.
The Nuns - The Nuns (Vinyl, LP, Album, Repress) | Discogs
He governeth 38 Legions of Spirits, and his Seal is thus. Pictured at the top left is the seal of the demon Valak also spelled Valac from the 17th century goetic grimoire The Lesser Key of Solomon.
The image shows the demon's name surrounding its symbol. As we explored whether any aspects of The Nun are based on a true story, we learned that the demon in the movie shares very little with the "real" Valak from mythology, other than the name and the title "Marquis of Snakes.
Lorraine, who is pictured below inset and portrayed by actress Vera Farmiga in The Conjuring movies, described the entity as a "swirling tornado vortex with this hooded figure in there. And it came across eventually in a very organic way. Because it is a demonic vision that haunts her, that only attacks her, I wanted something that would attack her faith. Something that would threaten the safety of her husband.
And so that was eventually how the idea of this very iconographic image of a holy icon cemented in my head. We are first introduced to the demon Valak in the form of the Nun in The Conjuring 2. Is this just a coincidence, or is the demon following her?