This may seem a bit of foolishness but it has a serious side to it. Obviously anyone who does anything like this owes a debt to C.S. Lewis.
Some time ago one of the chief devils and his advisers sat down to work out how they might best mislead humanity. "For a start we need to destroy Christianity." said one. "No doubt" sneered another "but how do we do that?"
They thought for a moment and then one of them said. "To begin with, we need to divide it to make it weaker. Didn't someone once talk about a house divided amongst itself? Then we can attack it with its own weapons".
"How does that work?"
"We emphasise the purely worldly and social aspects of it and push the spiritual aspects to the background. Pretty soon the social aspects will seem all important and the spiritual ones will only have relevance in the light of those, and then they will cease to have any relevance at all."
"Not bad" said the chief. "What next?"
"We'll get some of their thinkers to start expressing doubts about the reality of absolute truth. First of all, whether you can know it and then, when that's done, whether it exists at all. Take things in stages so they don't notice what's happening. That way they will eventually accept what they would never have dreamed of accepting at the beginning of the process. So we'll get their clever people to say that the only things we can know are what appear to us through our senses. Anything else is just theoretical and has no intrinsic reality. Before you know it they'll be thinking that there are no absolutes and everything is relative and that will make them feel that nothing means anything. Which of course is true"
"Give me more".
"We'll inspire them to question the reality of their own creation. We know that some aspects of life are left to chance because of the absurd plan of the tyrant and his ridiculous penchant for freedom. We'll get them to focus exclusively on those and ignore the main elements of the process which they can't uncover with their puny intelligence left to its own devices anyway. This will flatter their sense of self-importance and make them feel they direct their own future instead of, as we know, that little task being our concern."
"We'll make them reject the idea of higher and lower or better and worse in the name of an imagined unity, equality and fairness. They are mostly unable to hold two apparently paradoxical ideas in their minds at the same time anyway so that should be easy. We'll over-emphasise one side of the question and take it out of context, and that will make them reject the other side. We know that when you remove the idea of anything higher from the mix everything settles down nicely to a fairly low level which suits us very well."
" All right, but I want more."
"What about attacking the family and eroding the difference between man and woman? The first gives them too much security and a sense of deep rootedness. They shouldn't have security as it provides them with a nasty inner strength and confidence in stupidities like tradition, and they mustn't have strong roots so they're more easily manipulated. As for the men and women thing, well, haven't we always wanted to deviate nature and turn it against itself? Don't we delight in corruption? Once men and women start to see themselves as fundamentally the same they will lose any connection to an inner life. Then they will regard each other in a competitive light instead of being able to cooperate harmoniously in a complementary fashion as they were originally designed to do. Eugh! Of course, ever since that splendid victory in the Garden we've already made them fight but we can do much better."
"Persuade them that anything done in the name of love is good and if someone disputes that then they are a wicked and unloving person." said another.
"Attack their culture." said one more. " Destroy the sense of beauty and so called truth in their foul works of art. Let them see our more heroic truth in all its glorious abandonment of strait-laced convention and embracing of the real freedom to do anything you want".
"Corrupt their music" said another. " We know that music can serve us or the enemy, and it affects humans and the way they think and feel in a powerful way. Make it serve us! We want noise and more noise!"
The chief devil considered the matter for a while. "All these ideas have some merit. I congratulate myself on giving you the hints to come up with them. But they are not enough. The enemy will undoubtedly send people to counter them. We need to do more. We need to inspire those humans who respond to us and make them think they are advancing the cause of humanity. We need to make humans believe that their salvation relies on progress in their world, on material progress and more knowledge to bend nature to their will. Give them lots of things to distract them, then they will more easily be ours. Excite them with sex and more sex and get them to overlook what it's really for. That's always been easy but once we remove those bigoted and unnatural religious constraints it will be even easier. We need to foster atheism and materialism, of course, but we also need to infect their spiritual ideas with our own sweet additions that will poison the mix. We will send some of our disciples to lead astray those humans who are sensitive to spiritual matters but who also have their own ambitions and agendas which are ultimately more important to them. Wherever the enemy has his people we will attack relentlessly. We can sometimes bring them down through their desire for recognition or power. Many of them will resist us but many won't. We will prove to the enemy that our decision was the right one. I want souls! Get to work!"
The meeting closed and the devils went about their business. Far away in heaven the armies of light prepared themselves for the fight ahead. They knew that victory would eventually be theirs, of that there was no doubt, but they also knew there was a battle for souls to be had. Each individual human being was infinitely precious to their Master but each one had to make his or her own decision.