Topics Covered: About the Author, About Satanism, other FAQ
How did you come into Satanism?
I grew up in a pagan and atheist family, but my mother, who identifies as spiritual or pagan but grew up in an atheistic Jewish family, made sure that I at least had some exposure to our society’s dominant religion. I got kicked out of Sunday school rather quickly. I studied ideas of metaphysics and the occult through most of my teenage years and I still felt that calling to rebel against society even though doing so wasn’t in rebellion against my family, it was just the norm for me. Independent thought and nonconformity were thankfully a part of my upbringing. So most of my life I spent studying origins of Wicca, Neo-Druidry, shamanism, Asatru and heathenry, and nothing stuck or made sense to me in a way I didn't need to rationalize, though I did learn much about history and theology through these studies, as well as an appreciation for the cultural and social purposes or religion.
It wasn’t until I came out as an Atheist in my mid 20’s, that I finally felt like I was in my own skin. But the aesthetics, lifestyle and culture surrounding the occult was still a huge part of my life. This higher sense of calling to honor the self, and to honor justice and equality and what I later learned to be enlightenment values, was a part of my personality. I was left with all of that, with atheism, and with a very humanitarian outlook on life and personal values that very much align with rebelling against tyranny and arbitrary authority, paired with a strong disdain for theocracy and oppression. When I discovered The Satanic Temple, I was ecstatic to see progress in this narrative.
Finding that Satanism had evolved beyond Anton Lavey’s vision, into something romantic and modern, was definitely, to me, like coming home. It’s been a non-stop adventure of ideas clicking into place for me ever since. I’ve found my passion for learning and for humanity again, and in many ways, I’ve found my faith. It’s just a self orientated faith in the human capacity, and not in a supernatural entity or realm.
Why Satanism? Aren't you just anti-Christian or Atheist?
Modern Satanism is typically non-theistic, but it is a religion in it's own right, and I aim to make that the context of this blog so as to help educate people on this topic, and lead by example. This is an evolving school of thought, and Satanic practice and lifestyle is unique in it's philosophies, values, and individual interpretations.
Satanism does stand alone in it's own right as a religion outside of the context of anti-anything. There is a lot of information out there about the invention of Satanism, and the history of lore and mythology on Satan or Lucifer, which, while perhaps inspired by contrasting viewpoints within judeo-christian faiths, are carried by their own literature and canon. While perhaps our society's rendition of The Others of society, the Adversaries of society, are Satanic in the context of this, the core belief system behind Satanism is one which would adapt to the society which it is in. While one dominant faith may be the current oppressor in society, Satanism is absolutely not anti-Christianity. Satanism encourages benevolence and empathy among all people. It is, however, anti-authoritarianism and anti-theistic, to that end.
Let me clarify. Satanism does not promote divisiveness, hate, or judgement toward one group of people or another based on their religious identity. This would be counterproductive toward our own goals of fighting for representation and religious rights for our selves. Myself, I do identify as atheist, or, anti-theist. I am aggressively and vocally against and in rejection of all forms of superstitious authoritarianism, which includes most organized theistic religions. This is because I am of the party that believes that theism is inherently dangerous and intellectually offensive. But that's a problem that I have with philosophy and certain oppressive organizations within the school of thought of theism, it is not a problem that I have with any individuals, religions or labels. Where I advocate for plurality and secularism in government, this is in the context of any religion.
Please view these three posts I've written for more clarification and information on this argument:
#1, Sin-Positive, Satanic Lifestyle Blog "What is it?"