While many people were celebrating Easter this past weekend, I went about my usual business unaware that it was even Easter weekend until someone mentioned it to me. Although I was brought up in a Fundamentalist Southern Baptist church as a young child, I completely turned my back on organized religion a few years ago, and I never felt happier and more free in my life since doing so.
Although I do not practice any sort of religion and am mostly an Atheist who believes in science, there is one “religion” whose tenets I do follow. I say the word religion in quotation marks because it’s not really a religion; it’s more of a philosophy, actually. And that is the Church of Satan.
Now before anyone reading this gets all riled up and goes off the deep end condemning me as an evil devil worshiper who performs ritualistic animal sacrifices, eats children, and should be burned alive at the stake as a witch, let me assure you that is not the case at all. Satanists do NOT eat children…we only drink their blood while dancing naked during the full moon. 😉
But seriously, the philosophy of Satanism has nothing at all to do with devil worship. Here is a basic introduction to what the Church of Satan is all about:
Satanists do not worship the devil because they don’t believe that such a character even exists. Satanists are Atheists who neither believe in Satan or God or any other deities. If anything, Satanism can be characterized as a worship of the self. You are the God of your own personal universe, and you are to live your life as you see fit for yourself. The term “Satan” is used by Satanists as a metaphor to represent the natural, flawed, carnal nature of humanity. Whereas religions like Christianity, Islam, and Judaism focus on suppressing our human wants and drives in order to please God and eventually attain some sort of salvation and everlasting life after death, Satanism is all about accepting and embracing yourself for all that you are, flaws and all. Instead of trying to deny or suppress your natural desires such as lust, greed, vanity, or love for physical pleasures such as drinking alcohol or eating certain types of food in an attempt to become “pure in the eyes of God”, Satanism is all about embracing those desires and pleasures and indulging in them…..as long as you are not harming yourself or anyone else in the process. Although Satanism is all about being happy with yourself and enjoying life to the fullest the way YOU want to, addiction, self-harm, and causing harm to others is forbidden.
Satanism is all about indulgence where Christianity and other religions are all about abstinence. Satanism is all about self-care and taking care of your own needs and interests first while Christianity is about service to others and putting yourself last. Satanism is about not tolerating abuse or disrespect from others and treating them the same way they treat you, as opposed to the tenets of Christianity that command its followers to continually turn the other cheek. The latter two examples make it easy to see why a lot of practicing Christians often feel “burnt out” or develop co-dependency issues from constantly tending to others’ needs and wishes while ignoring their own and putting up with repeated disrespect or abuse. It’s also extremely common for a lot of practicing Christians to suffer from low self-esteem and enormous amounts of guilt, shame, and self-torture due to not being able to completely suppress their natural desires and instincts and attain whatever vision of perfection they have been brainwashed into thinking that they need to become. They beat themselves up for not being able to outwit or overcome their natural emotions, instincts, and desires….they beat themselves up for simply being normal human beings.
Going back to my point about forbidding self-harm or harm to others, Satanism has a few rules or “commandments” that explicitly forbid the harming of animals and children…which is a refreshing change from Roman Catholicism and other religions that seem to silently condone the sexual abuse of children while looking the other way. Animals are to be treated with the utmost respect. One of my favorites is Satanic Rule #5: “Do not make sexual advances unless you are given the mating signal.” As a woman, I have always very much appreciated the fact that Satanism specifically forbids rape or sexual harassment and holds all perpetrators 100% accountable for their actions. This is quite a refreshing difference from the Abrahamic religions that promote rape culture and blame women who are raped for “tempting men” with our clothing, physical appearances, or whatever. In fact, it wasn’t until I turned away from Christianity and embraced Atheism and the tenets of Satanism that I finally stopped feeling guilt and shame simply for being female and began to feel empowered in my natural right as a woman to go about my life and carry myself in any way I want without “deserving” rape or “tempting” men into committing such a crime. Satanic Rule #5 is just one of several of the rules of Satanism that has helped give me confidence and inner strength.
Here is a list of the Eleven Satanic Rules of the Earth:
- Do not give opinions or advice unless you are asked.
- Do not tell your troubles to others unless you are sure they want to hear them.
- When in another’s lair, show him respect or else do not go there.
- If a guest in your lair annoys you, treat him cruelly and without mercy.
- Do not make sexual advances unless you are given the mating signal.
- Do not take that which does not belong to you unless it is a burden to the other person and he cries out to be relieved.
- Acknowledge the power of magic if you have employed it successfully to obtain your desires. If you deny the power of magic after having called upon it with success, you will lose all you have obtained.
- Do not complain about anything to which you need not subject yourself.
- Do not harm little children.
- Do not kill non-human animals unless you are attacked or for your food.
- When walking in open territory, bother no one. If someone bothers you, ask him to stop. If he does not stop, destroy him.
Number Eleven is another one of my favorites. It has given me more inner strength and confidence to go about my business in public as a young woman without fearing that any scumbag might harass me in any way, because I can go about my business with the certainty of knowing that if some dumbass fuckboy catcalls me, touches me, or tries to impede me in any way, then I CAN and WILL make him regret it.
And here is a list of the Nine Satanic Sins as copied from the Church of Satan’s official website. As you’ll notice, the Nine Sins aren’t really focused on bad behavior like the Ten Commandments of Christianity. The Nine Sins are more about not succumbing to mental blockages like ignorance, pretentiousness, and lack of self-awareness:
The top of the list for Satanic Sins. The Cardinal Sin of Satanism. It’s too bad that stupidity isn’t painful. Ignorance is one thing, but our society thrives increasingly on stupidity. It depends on people going along with whatever they are told. The media promotes a cultivated stupidity as a posture that is not only acceptable but laudable. Satanists must learn to see through the tricks and cannot afford to be stupid.
Empty posturing can be most irritating and isn’t applying the cardinal rules of Lesser Magic. On equal footing with stupidity for what keeps the money in circulation these days. Everyone’s made to feel like a big shot, whether they can come up with the goods or not.
Can be very dangerous for Satanists. Projecting your reactions, responses and sensibilities onto someone who is probably far less attuned than you are. It is the mistake of expecting people to give you the same consideration, courtesy and respect that you naturally give them. They won’t. Instead, Satanists must strive to apply the dictum of “Do unto others as they do unto you.” It’s work for most of us and requires constant vigilance lest you slip into a comfortable illusion of everyone being like you. As has been said, certain utopias would be ideal in a nation of philosophers, but unfortunately (or perhaps fortunately, from a Machiavellian standpoint) we are far from that point.
It’s in the “Nine Satanic Statements” but deserves to be repeated here. Another cardinal sin. We must not pay homage to any of the sacred cows presented to us, including the roles we are expected to play ourselves. The only time self-deceit should be entered into is when it’s fun, and with awareness. But then, it’s not self-deceit!
5. Herd Conformity
That’s obvious from a Satanic stance. It’s all right to conform to a person’s wishes, if it ultimately benefits you. But only fools follow along with the herd, letting an impersonal entity dictate to you. The key is to choose a master wisely instead of being enslaved by the whims of the many.
6. Lack of Perspective
Again, this one can lead to a lot of pain for a Satanist. You must never lose sight of who and what you are, and what a threat you can be, by your very existence. We are making history right now, every day. Always keep the wider historical and social picture in mind. That is an important key to both Lesser and Greater Magic. See the patterns and fit things together as you want the pieces to fall into place. Do not be swayed by herd constraints—know that you are working on another level entirely from the rest of the world.
7. Forgetfulness of Past Orthodoxies
Be aware that this is one of the keys to brainwashing people into accepting something new and different, when in reality it’s something that was once widely accepted but is now presented in a new package. We are expected to rave about the genius of the creator and forget the original. This makes for a disposable society.
8. Counterproductive Pride
That first word is important. Pride is great up to the point you begin to throw out the baby with the bathwater. The rule of Satanism is: if it works for you, great. When it stops working for you, when you’ve painted yourself into a corner and the only way out is to say, I’m sorry, I made a mistake, I wish we could compromise somehow, then do it.
9. Lack of Aesthetics
This is the physical application of the Balance Factor. Aesthetics is important in Lesser Magic and should be cultivated. It is obvious that no one can collect any money off classical standards of beauty and form most of the time so they are discouraged in a consumer society, but an eye for beauty, for balance, is an essential Satanic tool and must be applied for greatest magical effectiveness. It’s not what’s supposed to be pleasing—it’s what is. Aesthetics is a personal thing, reflective of one’s own nature, but there are universally pleasing and harmonious configurations that should not be denied.
As you can see, Satanism is very much about keeping your mind sharp and not letting yourself become deceived or complacent. Therefore, education and a constant drive to learn new things is a key component of Satanism. You can’t reach your fullest potential and be the best version of yourself possible if your mind is closed off and ignorant. If Satanism could be summed up in one word, it would be INDIVIDUALITY. Satanism is all about being the best person you can be FOR YOURSELF and being proud of your identity. Live for yourself, not for anyone else….that is what I proudly and fiercely do every single day of my life, and it shows.
I’m not the only person in my family who has taken an interest in the Church of Satan, either. One of my uncles and several of my cousins have expressed an interest in understanding more about the Church of Satan many times in the past, and I’m pretty certain that my cousin Megan already practices it. But interestingly, after I began learning about the Church of Satan and its tenets, I suddenly realized that the person in my life who has influenced me the most by living his life in strict adherence to all of the principles of Satanism is my father…..who self-identifies as a Southern Baptist!
Now this has always been an interesting yet confusing contention for me. My father was baptized in our Southern Baptist church long ago when I was a kid, and to this day he still calls himself a Baptist even though he hasn’t set foot in a church since I was a kid. Yet my father does not think, talk, or act anything like other Southern Baptists. My father heavily believes in the theory of evolution and LOVES to read books on evolution and human anthropology. He is pro-choice. He enjoys partaking of alcoholic beverages and loves heavy metal rock music. He never sticks his nose into anyone else’s personal business and doesn’t trouble himself over worrying about who is having unapproved sex for pleasure, who is having an abortion, or which gay couples are getting married. He simply does not give a shit. He is all about education and constant learning of new things and expanding one’s mind. He believes in the full equality of women and has always pushed me to become a strong, educated, independent, self-sufficient career woman. He has NEVER pressured me to get married or have babies. He has always taught me that there is no reason why I can’t do anything a boy can do just because I have a different set of genitalia and that my female sex should NEVER hinder me from anything. NONE of what I just described about my father describes other Southern Baptists. I’m very familiar with Baptists and other Fundamentalist Christians, and those are the people who view education, science, and asking questions as sinful. They view women as nothing more than baby factories and second class citizens subservient to men. They believe they have a Divine right and mandate to poke their noses into the most intimate areas of everyone else’s lives and pass judgment and bark out orders about how they should live. That’s not my Dad at all.
My father may call himself a Baptist Christian, but he is truly a Satanist through and through. He may not be aware of it, but he conducts himself in adherence to every single rule and tenet of Satanism to an exact T. He is not a charitable person UNLESS he thinks you are worthy of his help. He leaves others alone and never goes looking for trouble, but God help the person who starts trouble with him!!! He has zero tolerance for stupidity and ignorance. He refuses to follow the crowd or let other people’s thoughts and opinions influence him or his happiness. He loves and respects animals far more than he ever has other human people. And he most definitely has an “eye for an eye” mentality and does not forgive or forget easily. One of these days I plan to broach this subject to him and tell him all about Satanism and show him how he embodies every single one of its tenets. I don’t know how he will respond to that, but it should make for a very interesting discussion!!
If you are interested in learning more about the Church of Satan, a good place to start is the Theory And Practice section of their official website, which can be found here: http://www.churchofsatan.com/theory-practice.php They also have a great F.A.Q. section where they answer common questions about Satanism: http://www.churchofsatan.com/frequently-asked-questions.php
I hope this blog article has been interesting and informative for you, and that you learned something new and expanded your mind a bit. Learning and discovery is the highest virtue. HAIL. 🙂
[Author’s Note: Any comments posted that are derogatory or intended to try to convert me to Christianity or any other religion will NOT be approved and will never see the light of day. So don’t waste your time. I respect the right of everyone else to believe whatever religion or philosophy they want, and I expect that same courtesy in return. I do not need anyone to try to “save my soul” no matter how strongly they may believe in Heaven and Hell. Live and Let Live. 🙂 ]