Satanism

The downward-pointing pentagram is often used to represent Satanism.

Satanism is a broad group of social movements comprising diverse ideological and philosophical beliefs. Their shared features include symbolic association with or admiration for Satan, whom Satanists see as a liberating figure. It was estimated that there were 50,000 Satanists in 1990. There may be as many as one hundred thousand Satanists in the world.[1]

Satan in Paradise Lost, as illustrated by Gustave Doré

Particularly after the Mark Twain (cf. Letters from the Earth) included such characterizations in their works long before religious Satanists took up the pen. From then on, Satan and Satanism started to gain a new meaning outside of Christianity.[2]

Eliphas Lévi's Sabbatic goat (known as The Goat of Mendes or Baphomet) has become one of the most common symbols of Satanism.

Although the public practice of Satanism began with the founding of The Church of Satan in 1966, historical precedents exist: a group called the Ophite Cultus Satanas was founded in Ohio by Herbert Arthur Sloane in 1948.[3]

Satanist groups that appeared after the 1960s are widely diverse, but two major trends are theistic Satanism and atheistic Satanism. Theistic Satanists venerate Satan as a supernatural deity, viewing him not as omnipotent but rather as a patriarch. In contrast, atheistic Satanists regard Satan as merely a symbol of certain human traits.[4]

There are signs that Satanistic beliefs have become more socially tolerated. Satanism is now allowed in the Royal Navy of the British Armed Forces, despite opposition from Christians,[5][6][7] and in 2005, the Supreme Court of the United States debated over protecting the religious rights of prison inmates after a lawsuit challenging the issue was filed to them.[8][9]

Contemporary Satanism is mainly an American phenomenon, the ideas spreading with the effects of globalization and the Internet.[2] The Internet promotes awareness of other Satanists, and is also the main battleground for the definitions of Satanism today.[2] Satanism started to reach Eastern Europe in the 1990s, in time with the fall of the Soviet Union, and most noticeably in Poland and Lithuania, predominantly Roman Catholic countries.[10][11]

Theistic Satanism

The full sigil of Lucifer, as it originally appeared in the Grimorium Verum
A more elegant and symmetrical version of the symbol to the left, used by some modern Satanists

Theistic Satanism (also known as traditional Satanism, Spiritual Satanism or Devil worship) is a form of Satanism with the primary belief that Satan is an actual deity or force to revere or worship.[12][13] Other characteristics of theistic Satanism may include a belief in magic, which is manipulated through ritual, although that is not a defining criterion, and theistic Satanists may focus solely on devotion. Unlike LaVeyan Satanism, theistic Satanism believes that Satan is a real being rather than a symbol of individualism.

Luciferianism

Luciferianism can be understood best as a belief system or intellectual creed that venerates the essential and inherent characteristics that are affixed and commonly given to Lucifer. Luciferianism is often identified as an auxiliary creed or movement of Satanism, due to the common identification of Lucifer with Satan. Some Luciferians accept this identification and/or consider Lucifer as the "light bearer" and illuminated aspect of Satan, giving them the name of Satanists and the right to bear the title. Others reject it, giving the argument that Lucifer is a more positive and easy-going ideal than Satan. They are inspired by the ancient myths of Egypt, Rome and Greece, Gnosticism and traditional Western occultism.

Palladists

Palladists are an alleged theistic Satanist society or member of that society. The name Palladian comes from Pallas and refers to the Greco-Roman goddess of wisdom and learning.

Our Lady of Endor Coven

Our Lady of Endor Coven, also known as Ophite Cultus Satanas (originally spelled "Sathanas"), was a satanic cult founded in 1948 by Herbert Arthur Sloane in Toledo, Ohio. The group was heavily influenced by gnosticism (especially that found in the contemporary book by Hans Jonas, The Gnostic Religion), and worshiped Satanas, their name for Satan (Cultus Satanas is a Latin version of Cult of Satan). Satanas (or Satan) was defined in gnostic terms as the Serpent in the Garden of Eden who revealed the knowledge of the true God to Eve. That it called itself "Ophite" is a reference to the ancient gnostic sect of the Ophites, who were said to worship the serpent.

Atheistic Satanism

The Sigil of Baphomet, the official insignia of the Church of Satan and modern Satanism.

Satanism, as codified in The Satanic Bible and overseen by the Church of Satan, was founded in 1966 by Anton Szandor LaVey. It is an atheistic and materialistic religion that champions individualism, epicureanism, secularism, and egoism, and propagates a worldview of naturalism, Social Darwinism, and Lex Talionis.[14][15][16][17][18] Adherents describe it as a non-spiritual religion of the flesh, or "...the word's first carnal religion".[19][20]

Contrary to popular belief, it does not involve "devil worship" or worship of any deities. The Church of Satan asserts that "In Satanism each individual is his or her own god—there is no room for any other god and that includes Satan, Lucifer, Cthulhu or whatever other name one might select or take from history or fiction.".[21] Adherents instead see the character of Satan as a symbol of pride, carnality, liberty, enlightenment, and undefiled wisdom, and serves as a conceptual framework and an external metaphorical projection of [the Satanists] highest personal potential. Satan (Hebrew: שָּׂטָן satan, meaning "adversary") is seen as a symbol of defiance to the conservatism of mainstream philosophical and religious currents, mainly the Abrahamic religions, that see this character as their antithesis.[22][23][24][25][26]

The prefix "LaVeyan" was never used by Anton LaVey or by the Church of Satan, nor does the term appear in any of its literature.[27] The church has stated its contention that they are the first formally organized religion to adopt the term "Satanism" and asserts that Satanism and the 'worship of Satan' are not congruent.[28] The term "Theistic Satanism" has been described as "[29] Today, the Church of Satan promotes itself as the only authentic representation of Satanism, and it routinely publishes materials underscoring this contention.[30][31]

The fundamentals of the religion's creed are synthesized in The Nine Satanic Statements,[32] The Nine Satanic Sins,[33] and The Eleven Satanic Rules of the Earth.[34]

Accusations of Satanism

Historically, some people or groups have been specifically described as worshiping Satan or the Devil, or of being devoted to the work of Satan. The widespread preponderance of these groups in European cultures is in part connected with the importance and meaning of Satan within Christianity.

Christianity

Title illustration of Johannes Praetorius (writer) (de) Blocksbergs Verrichtung (1668) showing many traditional features of the medieval Witches' Sabbath

Islam

The Yazidis, a minority religion of the Middle East who worship Melek Taus, are often referred to as Satan worshippers by some Muslims.[47] Due to this, they have been targeted for conversion and extermination by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.[48]

Popular music

Black metal has often been connected with Satanism, in part for the lyrical content of several bands and their frequent use of imagery often tied to left hand path beliefs (such as the inverted pentagram). More often than not musicians associating themselves with black metal say they do not believe in legitimate Satanic ideology and often profess to being atheists, agnostics, or religious skeptics. In some instances, followers of right hand path religions use Satanic references for entertainment purposes and shock value.[49] Most of black metal's "first wave" bands only used Satanism for shock value; one of the few exceptions is Mercyful Fate singer King Diamond, who follows LaVeyan Satanism[50] and whom Michael Moynihan calls "one of the only performers of the '80s Satanic Metal who was more than just a poseur using a devilish image for shock value".[51]

[53] Numerous church burnings that covered parts of Norway in the early 1990s were also attributed to youths involved in the black metal movement, which included people promoting theistic Satanic beliefs and strong anti-LaVeyan attitudes.[54] However, the legitimacy of such actions as Satanic endeavors, rather than simply rebellious actions done for publicity, is something that has been doubted by even some of those who contribute to the genre.[55]

Organizations

The Church of Satan

On Walpurgisnacht, April 30, 1966, Anton LaVey founded the "The Satanic Church" (which he would later rename the "Church of Satan"). The Church of Satan is an organization dedicated to the acceptance of the carnal self, as articulated in The Satanic Bible, written in 1969 by Anton Szandor LaVey.

First Satanic Church

After LaVey's death in 1997 the Church of Satan was taken over by a new administration and its headquarters was moved to New York. LaVey's daughter, the High Priestess Karla LaVey, felt this to be a disservice to her father's legacy. The First Satanic Church was re-founded on October 31, 1999 by Karla LaVey to carry on the legacy of her father. She continues to run it out of San Francisco, California.

Temple of Set

The Temple of Set is an [56] who left because of administrative and philosophical disagreements. ToS deliberately self-differentiates from CoS in several ways, most significantly in theology and sociology.[57] The philosophy of the Temple of Set may be summed up as "enlightened individualism" — enhancement and improvement of oneself by personal education, experiment and initiation. This process is necessarily different and distinctive for each individual. The members do not agree on whether Set is "real" or not, and they're not expected to.[57]

Setianism, in theory, is similar to theistic Satanism. The principle deity of Setianism is the ancient Egyptian god Set, or Seth, the god of adversary. Set supposedly is the Dark Lord behind the Hebrew entity Satan. Set, as the first principle of consciousness, is emulated by Setians, who symbolize the concept of individual, subjective intelligence distinct from the natural order as the "Black Flame". (Some people who are not members of the Temple of Set find spiritual inspiration in the Egyptian god Set, and may share some beliefs with the organization. The belief system in general is referred to as Setianism.)

Members of the Temple of Set are mostly male, between the ages of twenty and fifty.[57]

Order of Nine Angles

The authors Per Faxneld and Jesper Petersen write that the Order of Nine Angles (ONA, O9A) "represent a dangerous and extreme form of Satanism".[58] The ONA first attracted public attention during the 1980s and 1990s after being mentioned in books detailing [59][60] and around what it calls sinister tribes.[61][62]

The Satanic Temple

The Satanic Temple uses the literary Satan as a mythological foundation for a non-supernatural religion,[63] which it believes can be used to construct a cultural narrative that can usefully contextualize life experiences and promote pragmatic skepticism, rational reciprocity, personal autonomy, and curiosity.

As it lacks the creed of elitism and [69]

The only requirements to be a member are to support the tenets and beliefs of the organization, and to name yourself a member.[70]

See also

References

  1. ^ B.A. Robinson (March 2006). "Religious Satanism, 16th century Satanism, Satanic Dabbling, etc". Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance. Retrieved March 24, 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c Jesper Aagaard Petersen (2009). "Introduction: Embracing Satan". Contemporary Religious Satanism: A Critical Anthology. Ashgate Publishing.  
  3. ^ Lewis, James R. (2002). The Encyclopedia of Cults, Sects, and New Religions. Prometheus Books. p. 553.  
  4. ^ Gilmore, Peter. "Science and Satanism". Point of Inquiry Interview. Retrieved 9 December 2013. 
  5. ^ Royal Navy to allow devil worship CNN
  6. ^ Carter, Helen. The devil and the deep blue sea: Navy gives blessing to sailor Satanist. The Guardian
  7. ^ Navy approves first ever Satanist BBC News
  8. ^ Linda Greenhouse (March 22, 2005). "Inmates Who Follow Satanism and Wicca Find Unlikely Ally". New York Times. 
  9. ^ "Before high court: law that allows for religious rights". Christian Science Monitor. 
  10. ^ Alisauskiene, Milda (2009). "The Peculiarities of Lithuanian Satanism". In Jesper Aagaard Petersen. Contemporary Religious Satanism: A Critical Anthology. Ashgate Publishing.  
  11. ^ "Satanism stalks Poland". BBC News. 2000-06-05. 
  12. ^ Partridge, Christopher Hugh (2004). The Re-enchantment of the West. p. 82. Retrieved 2008-05-12. 
  13. ^ Prayers to Satan
  14. ^ http://www.churchofsatan.com/Pages/Enema.html
  15. ^ "Church of Satan FAQ 18. DRUG ABUSE". Churchofsatan.com. Retrieved 2013-09-09. 
  16. ^ http://www.churchofsatan.com/Pages/CShistory7LR.html
  17. ^ http://www.churchofsatan.com/satanism-the-feared-religion.php
  18. ^ http://www.churchofsatan.com/walpurgisnacht-xxxvii.php
  19. ^ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jEnxnINMkPE&list=UUTTM5rdQA-E78nSkOnUluug
  20. ^ http://www.churchofsatan.com/support-the-organization.php
  21. ^ a b http://www.churchofsatan.com/faq-fundamental-beliefs.php
  22. ^ http://altreligion.about.com/od/alternativereligionsaz/a/satanism.htm
  23. ^ http://www.churchofsatan.com/Pages/WhatTheDevil.html
  24. ^ http://www.churchofsatan.com/Pages/_FAQ03.html
  25. ^ [1]
  26. ^ http://www.churchofsatan.com/Pages/ChaplainsHandbook.html
  27. ^ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kkmuV5R_O6g
  28. ^ http://news.churchofsatan.com/post/101945623742/why-satanism-must-not-be-confused-with-devil
  29. ^  
  30. ^ Gilmore, Peter H. (2007). The Satanic Scriptures. Scapegoat Publishing. 
  31. ^ http://www.churchofsatan.com/rebels-without-cause.php
  32. ^ http://www.churchofsatan.com/nine-satanic-statements.php
  33. ^ http://www.churchofsatan.com/nine-satanic-sins.php
  34. ^ http://www.churchofsatan.com/eleven-rules-of-earth.php
  35. ^ a b c d e Robbins, Rossell Hope, The Encyclopedia of Witchcraft and Demonology, 1959.
  36. ^ Manichaeism by Alan G. Hefner in The Mystica, undated
  37. ^ Acta Archelai of Hegemonius, Chapter XII, c. AD 350, quoted in Translated Texts of Manicheism, compiled by Prods Oktor Skjærvø, page 68. History of the Acta Archelai explained in the Introduction, page 11
  38. ^ Extensively described in: Zacharias, Gerhard, Der dunkle Gott: Satanskult und Schwarze Messe, München (1964).
  39. ^ Original sources: Ravaisson, François Archives de la Bastille (Paris, 1866-1884, volumes IV, V, VI, VII)
  40. ^ Dr. Iwan Bloch, Marquis de Sade: His Life and Work, 1899: "The Marquis de Sade gave evidence in his novels of being a fanatic Satanist."
  41. ^ Jullian, Philippe, Esthétes et Magiciens, 1969; Dreamers of Decadence, 1971.
  42. ^ Bois, Jules, Le Satanisme et la Magie - avec une étude de J.-K. Huysmans, Paris, 1895.
  43. ^ Huysmans, J.-K., Là-Bas, 1891
  44. ^ Waite, A.E., Devil Worship in France, London: George Redway 1896.
  45. ^ Medway, Gareth (2001). Lure of the Sinister: The Unnatural History of Satanism. p. 18.
  46. ^ Messe Luciférienne, in Pierre Geyraud, Les Petites Églises de Paris, 1937 (Source here: Messe Luciférienne).
  47. ^ “The Devil Worshipers of the Middle East : Their Beliefs & Sacred Books” Holmes Pub Group LLC (December 1993) ISBN 1-55818-231-4 ISBN 978-1-55818-231-8
  48. ^ O'Loughlin, Ed (16 August 2014). "Devil in the detail as Yazidis look to Kurds in withstanding Islamic radicals’ advance".  
  49. ^ Baddeley, Gavin (1993). Raising Hell!: The Book of Satan and Rock 'n' Roll.
  50. ^ Götz Kühnemund: A History of Horror. In: Rock Hard, no. 282, November 2010, pp. 20-27.
  51. ^ Michael Moynihan, Didrik Søderlind: Lords of Chaos: The Bloody Rise of the Satanic Metal Underground, Feral House 1998, pp. 15f.
  52. ^ - Final Interview with Jon Nödtveidt -. INTERVIEW FOR THE FANS BY THE FANS.
  53. ^ Garry Sharpe-Young (2007). Metal: The Definitive Guide. 
  54. ^ Grude, Torstein (Director) (January 1, 1998). Satan rir media (motion picture). Norway: Grude, Torstein. 
  55. ^ Ihsahn Interview
  56. ^ Aquino, Michael (2002). Church of Satan (PDF). San Francisco: Temple of Set. 
  57. ^ a b c Harvey, Graham (2009). "Satanism: Performing Alterity and Othering". In Jesper Aagaard Petersen. Contemporary Religious Satanism: A Critical Anthology. Ashgate Publishing.  
  58. ^ Per Faxneld: Post-Satanism, Left Hand Paths, and Beyond in Per Faxneld & Jesper Petersen (eds) The Devil's Party: Satanism in Modernity, Oxford University Press (2012), p.207. ISBN 9780199779246
  59. ^ Senholt, Jacob. Secret Identities in The Sinister Tradition: Political Esotericism and the Convergence of Radical Islam, Satanism and National Socialism in the Order of Nine Angles, in Per Faxneld & Jesper Petersen (eds), The Devil's Party: Satanism in Modernity. Oxford University Press, 2012. ISBN 9780199779246
  60. ^ FAQ About ONA
  61. ^ Angular Momentum: from Traditional to Progressive Satanism in the Order of Nine Angles
  62. ^ Sinister Tribes Of The ONA
  63. ^ The Satanic Temple
  64. ^ Peter, Magus (1966-04-30). "Satanism: The Feared Religion". churchofsatan.com. Retrieved 2014-03-25. 
  65. ^ "Church of Satan • Let’s You and Him Fight". News.churchofsatan.com. 2013-12-09. Retrieved 2014-03-25. 
  66. ^ Massoud Hayoun (2013-12-08). "Group aims to put 'Satanist' monument near Oklahoma capitol | Al Jazeera America". America.aljazeera.com. Retrieved 2014-03-25. 
  67. ^ "Satanists petition to build monument on Oklahoma state capitol grounds | Washington Times Communities". Communities.washingtontimes.com. 2013-12-09. Retrieved 2014-03-25. 
  68. ^ Bugbee, Shane (2013-07-30). "Unmasking Lucien Greaves, Leader of the Satanic Temple | VICE United States". Vice.com. Retrieved 2014-03-25. 
  69. ^ "The Satanic Temple Performs Ceremony at Westboro Baptist Church Family Gravesite". Thesatanictemple.com. 2013-07-17. Retrieved 2014-03-25. 
  70. ^ "Join". Thesatanictemple.com. Retrieved 2014-03-25. 

Further reading

External links

  • Religious Tolerance page on Satanism
  • Satanism at DMOZ
  • The Satanic Temple (official national website)
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.