Empowerment and Dis-empowermentPosted: September 10, 2013
Recently I was having a discussion on line with a fellow Satanist who also gives Tarot readings. She was speaking of a client who is becoming too clingy and needy; phoning her up to ask her opinion on every decision she has to make no matter how trivial. I suggested perhaps the client should learn how to read the Tarot herself since she seems to put her trust in that. But she doesn’t really; she just wants to defer to somebody else and, of course have somebody else to blame when things go wrong. I guess that person won’t be a client for much longer…
Last year I wrote in my other blog about a teacher I was working with, whom I had had to fire. On the surface she was a sullen, moody unhelpful person who simply didn’t do her job properly and was disliked by students and colleges alike. Still, before taking such a step I took her out for a drink to try and find out what was behind her problems and if there was anything I could do to help.
She has been through some very difficult episodes in her life including an abusive father and the recent death of a friend. She had had health problems and substantial financial problems. I think she was happy to have somebody listen to her problems but I realised that was the only thing she felt comfortable talking about. She was not open to discussing solutions. Every time I offered a practical solution to some of her more immediate problems she came up with a whole list of reasons why in her special case that would not work. At one point I said that her negativity was palpable which was unattractive and off-putting to other people. “Yes, but what can I do?” She replied, “My life really is that bad” (Sigh). I tried to point out that other people (including me) have had problems but they get over them. Her response was that either other people’s problems were really not as bad as hers, or else she was just weak, which would of course be cause and reason for her to be even more negative and miserable. I said that sometimes you have to pretend to be cheerful and positive until it becomes part of your nature; at which point she just looked at me with an expression that meant either that I was seeing the world through rose coloured glasses or else I just didn’t understand the depth of her problems. By the end of the conversation I was quite angry and frustrated. Eventually, on my recommendation, she was indeed fired. I took no pleasure in that.
But such people seem to be becoming more and more common. I’d say there was a kind of epidemic of this kind of negative, dis-empowered attitude. I am sure we have all met similar types; people who are stuck in a rut, sad, unhappy and yet unwilling to do anything to change their situation. They always seem to want somebody else to help them and yet never take advice offered in good faith. They will keep coming back with the same problem every time until eventually we tire of them. They become psychic vampires, feeding off our energy and our good will. Generally Satanists have a low tolerance for such people, although many of us do start out by trying to help.
The question is why are there so many dis-empowered people?
There is no one simple explanation but I do think a large part of it has to do with attitudes that persist in Western Society which stem from Christianity and the other Abrahamic religions. Inherent in these religions is the idea that we really can’t do anything meaningful for ourselves. We are blighted by sin and need saving, by God, by The Church, by The Priest, by The Rabbi, by somebody else… Moreover the psychology goes on to convince us that we are small fry, insignificant and powerless. “The Gods may throw the dice; the likes of us abide.” In many ways the Abrahamic Religions encourage subservience and dependency and within their spear of influence even people and societies that don’t consider themselves to be religious are highly influenced by the structures, laws and norms that the church institutions put in place over centuries.
There are aspects of the Eastern religions that can also engender dependence and general apathy as well. For example, belief in Karma can lead some people to think that they must just accept their lot in life and not hope or expect to be able to change things. *(I believe in karma myself to some extent, but don’t believe it means everything in life is pre-ordained and unchangeable).
Therefore overall, I think the psychology of religion in general has a lot to do with making people feel powerless and dependent on others.
Satanism is not like that. Very few, if any, Satanists believe that Satan is going to magically do for us all that we can’t do for ourselves. As I have said frequently, the majority of Satanists are in fact atheists. Satanism is about “Self Empowerment”. Satanism allows us to use whatever skills and abilities we have productively to enhance our lives. As Satanists we give ourselves permission to be and to do whatever we want.
I am not claiming that Satanism is the only path to self empowerment. I know many people of other paths and philosophies who are self empowered. Lately I have been paying close attention to the Abraham Hicks movement which contains a lot of ideas I empathise with. And there are plenty of other ways for people to renew and invigorate their self confidence and self esteem. For me personally however, it is Satanism which goes straight to the heart of the matter because it directly confronts and challenges the religious concepts which for centuries have dis-empowered people.
You don’t have to do what it says in the Bible. You don’t have to be restricted by the laws of your church. You don’t have to feel guilty about living according to your own morals, wants and needs. If you think witchcraft can help you; learn it and use it… If you don’t want to get married or if you are sexually attracted to the same sex, do your own thing.
The downside of this (in some people’s opinion) is that you also have to take responsibility for your own life and your own actions. However what many of us find is that that “responsibility” is in itself empowering. (Perhaps that is the subject of another post one day).
Those of us who are self empowered (not only Satanists) tend to develop a kind of psychic charisma. People notice us when we walk into a room. People are attracted by our positivity (no matter what way nature has arranged ours faces and our figures). Of course that also means that psychic vampires buzz round us like moths attracted to a flame.
So what advice would I give to those who feel dis-empowered and are on the way to becoming despised as psychic vampires or just forever lost and sad? The key is tantalisingly simple. You don’t have to believe in Satan. You just have to believe in yourself. Once you do that, things will begin to change. It is about realignment. Your problems will not just go away. Positive people still have problems; we just deal with them better and enjoy our lives more.
I think part of the reason why I and other Satanists seem to notice an epidemic of dis-empowered people is that those people are very attracted to us. They want what we have. We attract them like magnets. Hopefully some of them will realise that the key is within them. And hopefully the shadow of dependency and dis-empowerment cast by the major religions of the last two millennia is actually beginning to disappear.