The subject of
these pages is something most people find very interesting. But more
than merely "interesting," it involves things Catholics must come to understand. There is a
war going on for souls, and the preternatural world is where much of
the battle is taking place.
First, a definition: what does "preternatural" mean? It
refers not to the natural world that we can explain with
scientific methodologies and easily perceive with our senses. Nor
it refer to the supernatural world -- the realm of God. It's the world "in-between"
-- a world that is created, but a world that is outside of the normal
order of nature that we can readily perceive, measure, and subject to
scientific methods. It's the world of spirit -- angels,
demons, and ghosts and such.
The lower, created natural world (what we normally see around us) is
subject to time and space.
The higher, created preternatural world (the world of created spirit)
is subject to time, but not to space.
The highest, uncreated supernatural world (the world of uncreated
Spirit -- that is, God -- and His Kingdom) is subject neither to time
Sadly, the word "supernatural" has come to commonly be used in place of
"preternatural" whenever phenomena arise that can't be explained by
science (e.g., ghostly apparitions, poltergeist activity, extrasensory
perception, etc.), whether nor not those phenomena spring from God or
not. Miracles are supernatural, but an apparent ghost throwing
plates in your house is preternatural. I pray folks out there reading
between "supernatural" and "preternatural." It's
an important distinction!
This little section will be broken down into the following pages, some
with links of their own to more information: