Sacred Profanity

I find that (insert major Super Bowl advertiser here) ad funny. Yeah, I said it! Unfriend me if you want, you pusillanimous wretch, but finish reading this before you do.

I haven’t actually seen the ad in question. Why? Well, it was taken down, for one, but I don’t need to see it. All I have to do is open the (insert social media website) app to see everyone losing their minds over it! THAT’S what’s so funny to me.

You’re all being played like the well-tuned, non-thinking consumer robots they want you to be. It doesn’t matter how reprehensible the message is. What matters is that your corporate masters now have you mentioning their name all over social media platforms.

Anything you find deadly serious, I will openly mock, especially images coming from your Electronic God. It’s all a well-constructed morality play to keep you controlled, just the same as the Ancient Greek, Roman, Egyptian, Norse and Abrahamic myths.

Just because you didn’t laugh doesn’t reduce the amount of comedy I found in your reactions to that ad.

The Church of Satan is Dead?

Naysayers are a dime a gross. I’d say, “A dime a dozen,” but that leaves out too many people and most of them aren’t worth that much to start with. Damn near everybody wants to say that you can’t do something, or something or someone is somehow worthless – you can’t reach an objective; you’ll never achieve that goal; you’re not worthy enough.

Many of those mentioned like to take cheap shots at organizations they are trying to compete against or that they simply can’t stand because it’s mere presence somehow represents a threat to their own mental well-being or their wallets, neither of which would really be affected either way if they would simply get over themselves and face reality.

Of particular interest is the plethora of puffed up, loud-mouthed chumps making claims that the Church of Satan is somehow dead or that it no longer follows the original mission set forth by Anton Szandor LaVey under the leadership of High Priest Gilmore. The majority of these clods you’ll find trying to head up their own quasi-Satanic organizations which exploit the name of Satanism for their own gain without giving any credit or thanks in return to Anton LaVey or the Church of Satan. They would love our organization to be gone so they could fill in the vacuum, provided that they actually had enough quality material to be able to fill in that large space that would be left in its absence. Alas, their claims are pure poppycock with zero basis in reality.

Frankly, I would really like to know where they base their opinion that the Church of Satan has fundamentally changed under Magus Gilmore’s leadership, or under the previous leadership of our former High Priestess, Magistra Templi Rex Blanche Barton. To me, it seems that they’re either not paying attention, never had any information to begin with, are former, disgruntled members or they’re simply trying to blow smoke up your ass in the desperate hope that you won’t notice so they can lighten the load upon your wallet.

With the exception of any unreleased material in “Satan Speaks,” Magus LaVey’s writings and interviews have been publicly available long before his passing. Even certain writings in “Satan Speaks” were found in other publications, i.e. The Black Flame Magazine or the Cloven Hoof newsletter. It is within those writings that we find what became the canon and policy of the Church of Satan.

When I originally requested information regarding becoming a member, I sent off my self-addressed, stamped envelope in 1995. Remember, this was in the days before the Internet became the ubiquitous entity it is. Much of the material regarding the Church of Satan’s already well-established policies for basic membership was included on paper in the returned envelope with some additional material, including Magistra Blanche Barton’s “Satanic Bunco Sheet.” While it would be another three years before I would send off my money and application, I actually read what it was that I had been sent, as well as any and all of the available writings of Magus LaVey I could locate and purchase, be it his books,essays or interviews of him in magazines such as Seconds or Answer Me!

One has only to read the Church’s website and literature of its membership to see that even since Magus LaVey’s death the tactics for the mission of the Church and Satanism in general may have altered slightly to reflect advances in technology and changes in the real world around us, but the basic objectives of the Church and the fundamental principles of the religion remain the same as they have since I first took an interest in joining its ranks.

Even to this day as the organization approaches Year 50 A.S., in keeping up with the public goings on of our membership as a basic Registered Member, it can still be seen that the Church of Satan and its membership is carrying on strong like the healthy beast it truly is and not some decaying, reanimated, shuffling corpse.

Rumors of the Church of Satan’s demise are greatly exaggerated. We regard naysayers with amused detachment and a cool disregard. They are clueless to what they’re saying.

The Church of Satan has succeeded in reaching Year 50. Can those other organizations? I highly doubt it.

Long live the Church of Satan!

Redefinition

Someone on WordPress is writing and trying to distinguish the “Satanic” Temple as somehow not being a cheap knockoff of the Church of Satan. I will not promote their blog due to my own admitted personal bias, but this was my response to their misrepresented view of Satanism:

The very word, “Satanism,” should ONLY be synonymous with the religion codified by Anton Szandor LaVey.

The common misconceptions about Satanism by the uninitiated and those who have read Anton LaVey’s “The Satanic Bible” without actually grasping its true meaning, is that it is somehow a hedonistic lifestyle or that the rituals included have anything to do with any type of supernatural magic. The rituals included are a form of psychodrama, wherein the ritual chamber acts, as Anton LaVey wrote, as a type of “intellectual decompression chamber,” purging the psyche of the practitioner of negative emotions that would harm them. Anton LaVey never preached hedonism, but rather, indulgence. What you appear to have done is confused Aleister Crowley’s writings with Anton LaVey’s. LaVey encouraged indulgence, but he also reminded the practicing Satanist to practice responsibility, not falling into the trap of unbridled hedonism which leads to compulsive behaviors. He also wrote, “Those who spell magic with a ‘k’ aren’t.”

By stating your group wants to disassociate from supernaturalism, it essentially makes itself yet another redundancy of actual Satanism, joining other quasi-satanic groups that have come and gone in the decades since the Church of Satan was first founded. Satanism is already atheistic. We do not view Satan as an actual being, but as an archetype for the proud, rebellious nature of mankind.

Your essay actually produces a very good question as to how the “satanic” Temple will come up with a defining religious text as, thus far, they have yet to come up with their own concordance. By drawing on literary references of Satan as a means of defining what you want Satan and Satanism to be, you’re still mimicking Anton LaVey, simply doing what he already did nearly 50 years ago when he formed the Church of Satan and codified Satanism into a religion.

As you yourself wrote, “Many of the ideas of secular Satanism are not unique.” Anton LaVey came up with this atheistic religion decades ago. Oliver Benjamin and Dwayne Eutsey, founders of the Church of the Latter Day Dude, as well as Bobby Henderson, creator of the Flying Spaghetti Monster also created atheistic religions. At least they had the good sense to come up with an original idea, not attempt to redefine one that was already established.

As for working in groups, as Satanists we understand that Satanism is for the individual, not those who prefer herd conformity. Such a decision should be left to the individual alone. There are those who work great together as a team, but there are those of us for whom it would be to our detriment to be forced to work with a group.

As for Social Darwinism and Objectivism, only the strongest and most determined shall survive. The numerous wannabe Satanist groups I have seen come and go in my 25 years as a Satanist have shown me that. As Satanists, we take care of those who matter to us personally. We are not sociopaths.

Your misrepresentation of actual Satanism only demonstrates that you have failed to grasp the actual meaning of what Magus LaVey wrote, you’re receiving your information from a poorly informed source or you have some type of personal bias.