Taken of the Zenhex Paranormal Fourm
There are a few main differences, one being that Demons are creatures born of utter darkness, and as such, they are tainted from birth in what humans call evil.
You can't really make comments like that...Angels are a Christian concept, created in the Bible. They were also, according to that particular mythos, created before Man, Man did not ascend to Angelhood at all. The most a mortal could hope to achieve was sainthood.
This thread basically assumes that Christian scripture is true, as:
1) Angels are a Christian concept.
2) There must be a higher power for them to serve, else they cannot fall.
If Christian scriptire is not correct, then Angels and demons can't really exist in this form. There may well be extraplanar agents of good and evil, but do they serve a higher power, or do they merely further an ideal? In which case...I'm confusing myself :S
What I'm basically trying to say (I think) is: If there is no God, there's nowhere for Angels to fall from, or to. If there is a God, then demons are fallen Angels.
That post sucked. This is a horribly complicated subject if you read into it a leeeetle too much :(
I think the myth of demons was around long before christian scriptures. The word of demon is actually Greek, and I remember reading a loooong way back that it means "light", and that demons were believed to be guardians of objects of great power or something along those lines. I'm not too sure anymore these days... I used to have an extensive book on it, but I had borrowed it from a friend... I'll consult my other texts to see if I have any better information and I'll quote some of the sources if I find anything good
In Viking times the word daemon simply meant a spirit. Sometimes mischievious, sometimes evil, sometimes benign
Fallen angels were creatures, perhaps once human that found the light so to speak and served "good" up until a point they were cast down. If there is an actual hell, and I believe there is, demons and humans dont lurk there, as it was created as a place for fallen angels to be banished too.
In folklore, mythology, and religion, a demon or demoness is a supernatural being that is generally described as a malevolent spirit, but is also depicted as a force that may be conjured and insecurely controlled. The "good" demon is largely a literary device.
The Greek conception of a daemon, appears in the works of Plato and many other ancient authors, without the evil connotations apparent in the Septuagint translation of the Hebrew Bible and in the Greek originals of the New Testament. The medieval and neo-medieval conception of a "demon" in Western civilization (see the Medieval grimoire, the Ars Goetia) derives from the ambient popular culture of Late (Roman) Antiquity. The Hellenistic "Demon" eventually came to include many Semitic and Near Eastern gods as seen by Christianity.
Greco-Roman concepts of daemons that passed into Christian culture are discussed in the entry daemon.
In some cultures demons are still feared in popular superstition, largely due to their power to 'possess' humans, and they are an important concept in many modern religions and occultist traditions. In the contemporary Western mystical tradition epitomized by the work of Aleister Crowley, a demon, such as the "Demon of the Abyss", Choronzon, is a useful metaphor for certain inner psychological processes, one which is nonetheless, in a sense, 'real' to those who experience it as a separate being.
**Taken from Wikipedia. Click that link for a ton of info on demons in cultures and religions, art and literature, and so on and so forth. I'll post again once I find more info.
Actually, only the angels as we know them are a christian concept. Angels have been around just as long as demons, though under a different name etc throughout other cultures. For instance, the egyptians believed that each of their gods had a group of servants. Not extremely powerful in scope, but more so than any mortal. A creature in the service of a higher being, as you have said, is truly all that an angel in its sense is.
Now take the celestials for example. They were described as men and women with wings and an ethereal light, and even became a part of many roleplaying games, just as did the Tieflings, which exhibited many traits akin to the angels, or celestials, but in essance, were of a darker sort.
Two instances where I believe the the word and term angel could and would suffice as they fill the needed requisites.
As for demons, it is a very common, and much believed idea that they were around long before any form of human or civilization. Noddist scholars say god didnt create the earth, he just purged the demons from it by banishing the everlasting darkness, or in a sense, creating a new world.
I take your point on terminology as a convenient point of reference.
The crux of this would seem to be the existence of a God, or a pantheon of Gods, for Angels to have somewhere to fall from, and to, as I said before. A friend of mine summed up Noddist teachings in great style once, and I'll share it with you here for comedy value:
"God was basically something of a tinpot dictator, who took the Garden of Eden and proclaimed it his own. His opening speech followed these lines: 'I am King of all that I see. Except that bit outside. Oh, and you humans, don't touch my stuff.'"