Introduction by Sophie
We guard our privacy pretty well, but the fact that we are a family of three women who are all Satanists means we are quite well known in some circles and, it’s fair to say, a subject of curiosity to some. An acquaintance of ours who is a radio journalist here in Switzerland recently asked if we would do a radio interview about being a family of Satanists. After a bit of reluctance and a lot of conditions we finally agreed. Obviously we didn’t allow our real names or locations to be broadcast on the radio and part of our agreement was that we should be allowed to publish a written form of the interview on our blog after the radio show was broadcast. Thus we are publishing part of it here. Please bare in mind that the original interview was in German, so this is my translation and I am leaving out all the “errs” and “umms” that creep into normal speech. I have also edited out some parts of the interview, including part of the introduction, which are just repeating things we have already said here. Hopefully our readers will find our five minutes of fame interesting! The interview itself provoked a quite big response and we have been invited back to answer some listeners questions. As for our readers here, we are always happy to answer any sensible questions. Here is the interview…
Interviewer: I am sitting in a suburban kitchen drinking coffee with three polite and well spoken women. On the the surface there is nothing particularly unusual about the women. All three of them have tattoos, but then so do half the people in Zurich these days. The two older women are in a lesbian relationship but hopefully that fact alone should not raise any eyebrows in 2017. The youngest of the three is their daughter, she is in her late teens and looks a little older than that. If you passed them in the street you wouldn’t notice anything unusual about them. They are in many ways a modern version of the typical nuclear family. But the room opposite the kitchen where we are sitting now has been converted to a temple of sorts. It is dark, all the walls are painted black and there is a table on which a black candle is burning in front of a small statue of Satan. On the four walls of the room there are framed pictures of demons. The women I am speaking to are Satanists. All three of them. Their names are Cassie, Sophie and Tina.
So let me get the awkward question out of the way first. “Are you evil? Do you sacrifice animals or practice black magic?”
Cassie; “Well the easiest of those questions is the middle one. We don’t sacrifice animals. We don’t harm animals in any way. And before you ask; we don’t sacrifice virgins or babies either! The other two questions are a bit more difficult to answer because the terms you use mean different things to different people. We do practice what some call black magic; by which I mean we are witches and we practice any kind of magic that achieves our goals. There are some witches, such as Wiccans who have a kind of moral code attached to the magic they do which says they should harm nobody. We don’t make a vow to keep to any such code, but that doesn’t mean we spend our time creating spells to hurt people. It just means we don’t rule anything out.
Sophie; “For the record, I don’t think that so far any of us have ever done any magic that could be called evil or malicious. We just don’t rule out doing such things in the unlikely event that it became necessary. We do however sometimes do magic that helps us. We don’t have any rules about not using magic to make our own lives better.
Tina; “Black Magic of the type we use, also implies using techniques and working with forces that people of some other religions think are bad or wrong.”
Cassie “Which brings us back to the question of evil. Some Satanists, including Sophie and Tina, don’t particularly mind other people using the word evil to describe us. But it kind of sticks in my throat. I do lots of things, like practicing black magic for example, which some people think are evil. But I also do a lot of things which some people, probably most people, think are good. We don’t believe in absolutes and we don’t really think anybody else has the right to judge whether we are good or evil. Personally I prefer to use the word Satanic. I’m happy to be described as that.”
Interviewer; “Well let’s get to the basics. What does it mean to be a Satanist? What do you believe? Do you worship The Devil?”
Tina (Laughing) “Do you always ask three questions at once?”
Tina “It’s okay. But those are big questions. There are different kinds of Satanists just like there are different kinds of Christians or Buddhists. Probably, the biggest group of modern Satanists are those who follow the basic teachings of Anton LaVey. He became famous in the 1960s. He was a kind of showman really, but he popularized a form of Satanism which was like an antidote to Christianity and other organised religions. He was trying to challenge people to think for themselves and break some of the rules and taboos that Christians insisted on. But actually he was an atheist and so are most who follow his line of Satanism. For them everything is symbolic and the devil is in some ways our inner self; all the parts that other religions say we should be ashamed of…
Interviewer; “So that is the kind of Satanism that you follow?”
Sophie “Not exactly. We use Laveyan Satanism as a kind of guideline but while they are atheists we are not. We believe there is an actual force or being which we call Satan or The Devil. So in a way you could say we worship The Devil.”
Cassie; “But only in a way… We don’t really use the word worship in the way Christians understand it. Maybe a better word is “respect”. We Respect Satan, and we also interact with him… But even then it is not what most people think… We do not believe Satan is the way Christianity describes him, so we don’t actually think he is evil. We believe Satan is a force in the world that the organisations of other religions fear. Basically, if you look at the Biblical texts and other writings, Satan is simply saying that it is wrong to worship God or the institutions of the church. Satan is the voice saying we can work things out for ourselves and it would actually be better that way. Satan is the champion of those who don’t think any religion should repress or control people just to hold on to power. Satan is telling us we can be our own Gods. And Christianity and some other religions hate and fear that idea…
(The three of us then explain those ideas in a bit more detail, which we have already done in several posts on this blog. Then there is a section on how and why we became Satanists, which we have also written alot about in this blog)…
Interviewer; “So how does all this work out in daily life? Are you completely hedonistic? Do you have any morals that other people could relate to?”
Tina “You are doing the three question thing again!”
Sophie “Yes, we are hedonistic. Actually we reject the concept that it is wrong to be hedonistic. We also reject the concept of sin. So we enjoy our lives as much as we can and we place value on that. We treat ourselves well. We enjoy all the physical and sensual pleasures that come our way without guilt…”
Tina; “So we party! We drink. We smoke. We enjoy good food and having fun. And sex of course…”
Cassie; “And we don’t think there is anything wrong with that. But as Satanists we believe we should take responsibility for our actions. So while we have fun, the responsibility to look after ourselves is ours and so are the consequences. To put it simply if we want to go out and have some drinks we decide for ourselves how much is too much and how much of a hangover we are prepared to put up with. Of course you don’t have to be a Satanist to have that attitude; it is just sensible… But in a way, that is the point. Being sensible is pretty much fundamental to Satanism. And that applies to more serious things too, like what we do in our sex lives or even what we do or think politically or magically. It is all about thinking the consequences through and taking personal responsibility for our actions; even when it comes to having fun.”
Interviewer; “That all sounds very reasonable, but it also sounds very selfish. Don’t you care how your actions affect other people?”
Sophie; “This is a mistake in thinking that a lot of people make. Why should the fact that we think about ourselves and our own wants and needs mean that we don’t care about other people? It just means that we put ourselves first. I know some religions say that is wrong but we just think it is a sensible starting point. We do care about other people. We are not obliged to by some outside force, we just do. But we choose who we care about and what we can or can’t do to help them.”
Tina; “I could give you a list of what we do for other people but… That probably isn’t the thing to do… But you know… Cassie and Sophie work with young people who have difficulties. They are teachers. You can’t be a teacher without caring. We all give money to charities we like. I have organised help for refugees and I help out in an animal sanctuary… We do lot’s of things that most people would think are nice, or good… But in our free time we enjoy ourselves… We have fun… We have sex… We indulge ourselves… But we are not so stupid as to let those things get in the way of other important things we have to do to be successful in life.”
Cassie; “And as for morals. We have our own and we try to be true to ourselves. Basically we try to be kind and helpful most of the time but we don’t feel obliged to be nice to people who treat us or other people badly. In our daily lives… Well, Sophie and I have quite a lot of organisational work to do for our coven. We have the room you described earlier where we sometimes meditate or get together for learning or small family rituals… But otherwise, our daily lives are pretty much like other people… We have breakfast. We work. We have meals together when we are all home. Sometimes we argue. Sometimes we just chat. Sometimes we watch TV. Our daily lives are not very unusual.
Interviewer; “I’m sure when a lot of people think about Satanism they will imagine dark rites and rituals with perverted sex and lots of blood. Is there any truth in that?”
Cassie; “Well the true answer is that sometimes there is some truth in that. We do have rites and rituals which emphasize the darker side of life and death even. There is sometimes some sexual content in those rituals which we don’t see as being perverted, but admittedly our sexual morals are maybe a bit more liberal than the norm. And sometimes but not always, there is blood. Usually our blood, or the blood of animals which have already been humanely killed to be used for food. Yes, I know that can sound a bit grotesque to a lot of people; but a lot of those same people will routinely sit down and eat beef for dinner with the blood oozing out of it… In fairness there are also quite a lot of Satanists, some in our own coven, who are vegetarians and who do not participate in anything which involves animal blood. But the point of all these rituals is to change your mindset for a while, to break common taboos. It has been recognized for centuries in many different religions, that breaking taboos combined with the theater, the language and drama of ritual can have powerful psychological effects. Anton Lavey recognised that, and so do we and many other modern Satanists. In our group we feel it opens up a channel between us and Satan. In other groups they see it as opening up the inner self, the God within. We think that is part of it too.”
Interviewer; “Sophie, I am sitting here looking at you and your daughter and I would like to ask a blunt question. You are a mature woman and it is clear it is up to you how you live your life. But your daughter is so young and, dare I say, innocent. How can you condone or justify her getting mixed up in the kind of things Cassie has just described or even the wider implications of living as a Satanist? Don’t you worry about her as a daughter? Some… A lot of people would argue that it is your duty to guard and protect her against the very things you seem to be advocating.”
Sophie (I was bristling a bit about this question and my tone was a bit angry!) Firstly I love Tina very much, and yes, I am still her mother and I will always protect her as much as I can in all ways… And if anybody were to hurt her, they would come to wish with every bone in their body that they had not crossed me! But… I didn’t raise my daughter to be an eternal child. Part of a mother’s responsibility is to help their children grow up and become all that they can be, as adults. And I think I am doing that. Tina is not a child. I recognize that. She will be at university next year and she is making a life of her own. She is already an adult. Young…yes. But an adult all the same. And I welcome that. She is NOT innocent and wouldn’t want to be. I don’t care what other people think of me, but I think there is something beautiful about your child discovering the riches of the adult world and learning some of the pleasures we sometimes take for granted when we are older… And also of course some of the problems and extra responsibilities that go with being an adult. And as I don’t think there is anything at all wrong with the things we have described in the interview today, I also don’t think it is wrong for my daughter either. About the ritual side… Tina does not participate in our own coven at the moment. Partly because we do have an age limit and would not allow people to join us until they are eighteen; and Tina still has a few months to go before she reaches that landmark. But anyway after lots of discussions we all decided that it would not be right at first for her to join our own coven, so she is in training in another coven… We do however do a few smaller rituals and magical workings as a family group. We feel it brings us closer together.”
Tina; “I’d just like to say that I have a very close relationship with my mother which is more than a lot of my friends do. My Mum and I do argue sometimes but basically we are friends and we trust each other. I study hard. I don’t do any illegal drugs. I pay my way at home. I don’t cause problems. But I’m not innocent and never wanted to be. I have a boyfriend. I’ve had other lovers. I do go out and have fun. But if I have problems, which is just normal because everybody has problems… My Mum and Cassie are the first people I come to. I can talk to them about anything and I trust what they say and mostly take their advice. How many other teenagers can truly say that?”
Interviewer; “Well we are coming to the end of the interview and have to finish off. I’m am sure there is much more we could have talked about and which you might have liked to talk about. So can I ask each of you to sum up in your own words what you feel you gain from being a Satanist? And feel free to add anything you think is important which we didn’t have time to go into detail about.”
Cassie; “To put it simply I gained in every way. I learned to like and understand my whole self better. I became more confident and more successful. My life has been more interesting, more rewarding and more fun since I became a Satanist and I have gone in all sorts of directions I never dreamed of. Having said that, I know that Satanism is not for everyone… And we still have friends of different religions or of no religion, but I should also point out to listeners that there are some crazy people who pretend to be Satanists, just as there are idiots in all religions. So if anybody is seriously interested in finding out more they should do a lot of research and be quite careful when they are first starting out.
Sophie; “I found when I came out as a Satanist, it was like a weight was lifted off me and I could be myself, my real self, for the first time. Like Cassie, it has taken me in all sorts of new directions. I would say however that we didn’t really discuss the details of all the different groups and types of Satanists. I was an atheist before becoming a Satanist and thought that was how I would stay… But I came to see things another way. Atheists are the biggest group of Satanists though and I would kind of recommend that type as the best way into Satanism for anybody that is interested in finding out more. The emphasis of Satanism is self improvement and self empowerment.”
Tina; “I think Satanism has given me a bit of an edge… A kind of protective coating… It also helps me to understand people and life much better. Some parts of it are like a free psychology course! Like Sophie said, it is mainly about empowerment. Actually I also like Satanism because it is scientific. Today we have mainly spoken about some of the things people who are not Satanists would probably think about… But when you study and find out more about it, you realize it is very scientific and it respects science. That is important to me.”
Cassie “Just one quick thing I’d like to add. Being a Satanist doesn’t make you a good person or a bad person. It just helps you to understand yourself better and empower you to achieve all you can. Your listeners may know some people who they think of as very good, kind people, and they might just turn out to be Satanists. And we all know people of other religions like Islam and Christianity who think they are doing good but really aren’t. I’m not saying it’s impossible, but you don’t often find homophobic, bigoted Satanists!”
Interviewer. “Thank you for your time. So that was three real live Satanists. As I said earlier, you could pass them in the street and you would have no idea about this aspect of their lives… A lot of what they say sounds reasonable, but is it? Let us know what you think.”
Looking back through our archives, one of the posts that still gets the most traffic is the one about Satanic Sex. Another popular post is the one in which, several years ago, my daughter Tina decided to become a Satanist. Since then she has grown up and has a blog of her own which gets a reasonable amount of visitors. One of the questions that both she and I are most often asked is how our satanic beliefs inform our attitudes to sex and love. We are both aware that there is not much written about this subject on the net; at least, not much that we would recommend! So we decided to get together to answer some of the questions we are most often asked on this subject and maybe expand on our views and experiences a bit. First; for any visitors new to this site, a very short paragraph of background information about us.
My name is Sophie. I am 40 years of age and 17 years ago I gave birth to my precious daughter Tina. At the time I was in a long term relationship with Tina’s father. We split up fairly amicably when Tina was seven when we realized we had different directions and priorities in our lives. Tina’s father has continued to play an active and supporting role in Tina’s life and upbringing. I have been sexually active since my mid teens and I suppose I was always fairly liberal and adventurous in my sexual affairs. I’d had a couple of serious boyfriends before meeting Tina’s father (and quite a lot of less serious ones) and after the split I had a lot of liaisons with both men and women before meeting Cassie who has since become my life partner. Both Cassie and I are bisexual and still occasionally have sex with men, but we knew as soon as we met each other that we were meant to be life partners and we love each other deeply.
So I am Tina. I’m 17 in two weeks time and I have been sexually active for just over a year. I was the most innocent of children and had no interest in sex or any of the things connected with being an adult until I was about 14 and in that year I changed and grew up so much it shocked even me! When I was fifteen I started going to parties, meeting boys and kissing and stuff… I decided I should get prepared for the time when there would be more “stuff”! I had a lot of conversations with my mother and then just before I was sixteen she took me to the birth control clinic and I started taking the pill. Luckily I have always been able to talk openly about these things with my mother. A few months later I lost my virginity to my first serious boyfriend. Later I split up from him and “experimented” a bit. Now I have a boyfriend who is a few years older than me and shares a lot of my beliefs and values.
Mother’s Ground Rules.
Sex should only happen between fully consenting adults. If a person doesn’t or can’t give consent it is rape and the rapist should be punished as harshly as possible. Here in the part of Switzerland we live in the age of consent is 16. I know my daughter and I know she is adult enough to have sex if she wants to. However, not all people mature at the same pace. Tina has some sixteen year old friends who, in my opinion, are still not ready for sex. It is also fair to say that some people mature at a faster pace and maybe ready and hungry for sex earlier. Even so, the law is there to protect people and it is always best to wait until you are not breaking the law. If you can’t wait, there is something wrong. In all cases, if in doubt, don’t have sex; wait until a better time.
It is your body and only you should choose how to use it and who to share it with. Never, never do anything sexually that you don’t want to do. If a partner pressures you into doing or trying something sexually you are uncomfortable with, dump that person!
Girls. You can get pregnant! This is something the men don’t fully understand because it can’t happen to them. If you get pregnant, whether you have the child or not, it will change your life completely. So ALWAYS use birth control unless you are with somebody you don’t mind starting a family with. All women have the right to have an abortion, but abortion is a big thing that can fuck your mind and body up in all sorts of ways. It is not a form of last minute birth control.
And last of the scary warnings… AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases still exist. In fact most sexually active people catch an STD of some kind at some point. Be careful. Take precautions. In all casual sex adventures it is best to use condoms.
The Satanic Perspective.
Satanists are intelligent, scientific people and so they should take all the above warnings seriously. Satanists are self-centred and self-reliant, and must take responsibility for protecting themselves as much as possible. However, with all that being said, Satanists think sex is normal and healthy, Satanists are mostly hedonistic, meaning we see nothing wrong with enjoying carnal and mental pleasures as much as possible and Satanists are self aware so learning how to achieve maximum pleasure and satisfaction through sex (and all other things) is part of our life path and meaning. Satanists tend to value and enjoy the so called darker, left hand, sinister, side of things. We feel it is important to explore and integrate that side of things into our lives in a constructive way. That may make some of us more open to certain forms of sexual expression and fetishism than some others may be.
In practical terms, in our own family, my daughter’s blossoming sexuality and sexual appetite is not something I fear or dread (although I will always be the protective mother who sometimes gives more advice than is wanted), rather it is something I welcome and encourage as I think gaining sexual knowledge and pleasure is an important aspect of personal development.
What would you say is the relationship between sex and love?
They are not the same of course but they are very interconnected. Love can be wonderful and Satanists can fall in love as truly, madly and deeply as anybody else. I have had a lot of sexual partners but only a few partners that I was passionately in love with. The difference is huge. Of course the feeling of being “in love” is a huge and lovely thing in itself although when it doesn’t work out as you would like, or when it ends, it can be devastatingly painful. But how to cope with that is one of the life lessons it is important to learn and it says a lot about who we actually are. A loving relationship is the best situation in which to fully enjoy sex and explore your own needs and boundaries. Making love with somebody you are in love with is absolutely the best and safest way to discover and enjoy sex when you are “starting out”. And even later in life, sex within a loving relationship is almost always the best kind of sex there is. You know that Cassie and I have had sex with quite a few other people, and we still do sometimes, but when we are together our love adds a dimension to sex that beats everything and everybody else we have ever experienced.
But there is still a place for sex outside of love. It must still and always be fully consensual, but frankly speaking most people need and benefit from having sexual experiences outside of a committed relationship sometimes. Many religions are very much against that. Satanism treats people as adults with their own agency who don’t have to follow or pretend to follow any form of religious or societal rules when it comes to sex.
Is there sex in Satanic rituals?
Not always, and not in all covens and groups. But sometimes, yes. In our own coven there is nudity and there are some sexual moments or acts in some rituals. It is very rare for full intercourse to happen during a ritual, although because of the sexually charged atmosphere some people do have sex as soon as they can after the formal part is done. But there is sexual stimulation… I don’t want to go into details, but I also don’t want to tell lies. There are sexual elements in many of our coven meetings. They are not really the debauched orgies you sometimes read about but I suppose in some people’s opinion any kind of sexual activity outside what is normal for them is seen as bad… However, and this is really important… Nobody should ever be pressured into any form of sexual activity they are not comfortable with. There are several people in our own coven who prefer not to participate in some of the more sexual rituals. That is fine and we totally respect that. Really. I would say to any person starting out in Satanism or even those who are very experienced practitioners, never do anything sexually just to fit in with a group. If you feel pressured to do something against your will or that you find uncomfortable in any way, leave quickly. If necessary report them to the police. And it is probably worth getting to know several members of the group and what they do for a living, before attending any private group meetings.
Is there a Satanic view of things like homosexuality?
Not really. You know by now it is hard to find any two Satanists who agree on everything, or even anything! However, in my own experience most Satanists I have met tend to have more more liberal views in matters of sex than mainstream society. It is also a Satanic principle to break down taboos. So generally Satanists are open minded about homosexuality and most other forms of sexual expression and identity. Some homosexuals, especially those who have suffered and felt repressed by religions like Christianity, find Satanism a great release and may go into a bit of overdrive in matters of sex! In our own coven we have people of all shades and colours on the sexual spectrum.
So are all Satanists kind of uber-sexual?
No. I know several Satanists who have no interest in sex at all.
Any final comments?
Sex is healthy and fun but it is an adult thing which stirs deep emotions. Satanists (like everybody else really) should enjoy it responsibly. And in the excitement of sex, don’t overlook love. Love is something which binds and heals. Other religions don’t have the monopoly on love. It is as important for Satanists as anybody else.
And is there anything you would like to add?
Well I don’t really have much experience but maybe there are a few things I would add… Firstly sex does change you. It is not the thing of loosing your virginity, it is what happens after that, you begin to think differently and change in other ways… It is not something you can undo. I was lucky but I know some people whose first sexual experiences were not very good or happy. And they are a bit fucked up by that. They need to find their way back and kind of start again. Even I can say for sure it is better to learn about sex in a relationship than in a casual one night stand. So maybe if it starts off bad, people need to get back to the start and look for love more than sex.
Also the places where sex often happens first is at parties or clubs where there is a lot of alcohol and sometimes drugs involved. That is never good. I know some people who had big problems from that. Somebody I know online said if you are drinking at a party or club you should keep an eye on your drink and if you put it down somewhere where you can’t see it, never drink from that glass again in case somebody puts something in it.
I think I am luck that I have you and Cassie and Dad and I can talk to you about things. Some people aren’t so lucky but they should really try to find somebody trustworthy to ask for advice.
Here is a big rule from me. NEVER let your boyfriend/girlfriend/lover of any kind take photos while you are having sex. I can kind of see why people do it sometimes. It can seem kind of fun and kinky. I nearly let it happen once but didn’t. There is a girl in my school who found pictures of herself posted on Facebook and on some other sites. This is something which happens a lot these days and people should be careful. If it does happen though, remember the criminal is the one who took and published the photos, not the person in the picture.
And lastly, Satanists often say Hail Satan and Hail Yourself! Remember you can’t hail yourself unless you respect yourself.
In the last year I have realized I really like sex. But I also realized I like to be fully in control. I know there are some sexual games and fetishes where you give up a bit of control (maybe wearing hand-cuffs for example) but I don’t think these are the kind of things you should do when you are just starting out in sex. There are plenty of other things to experiment with before you get on to bondage and you don’t have to like or do everything straight away.
It is a year since we heard the sad news that our friend Lee had passed from this world.
He is still often in our thoughts.
His legacy remains.
Post by Sophie
It must be clear by now to any regular readers that Satanism is fundamental to our family. All three of us take Satanism very seriously and it underpins most, if not all of what we do and say in every aspect of our lives. Cassie and I run a Satanic coven, an enterprise which takes up an increasingly large amount of our lives. Our daughter Tina is just as committed as we are and is beginning her adult life fully grounded in Satanic values and knowledge. We are all going to hell and enjoying the route that leads there.
But, we are not just Satanists…
What I mean by that is that we have ordinary lives and frankly not every moment of our lives is taken up with things that are overtly Satanic. I think that is important. One of the biggest faults and failings of every religion; of all religion, is that people can be consumed by it and in many respects driven insane by it. It can indeed be the opium of the masses. In my opinion whenever religion replaces rationality it is wrong. Whenever people get so swept up in their religious beliefs that they lose their reason or common sense they are in very dangerous territory and indeed may become a danger to those around them as well. This is where fanaticism begins.
It was fanatical maniacs who killed innocent people at a rock concert in France and an airport in Belgium. It is religious fanatics who frequently bomb their neighbors in Afghanistan and the Middle East. It is religious lunatics who bomb abortion clinics. There are religious fanatics who want to rule large swathes of the world and kill anybody who stands in their way. These same people fear the power that education could give the people they want to dominate. And throughout history it has often (in fact nearly always) been religious fanaticism that has driven violence, war and the destruction of whole cultures. It doesn’t matter what brand of religion these fanatics claim to represent; Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism or even Buddhism: all religions have their share of blood on their hands as a result of mindless fanaticism.
Satanism should be different; it is after all an anti-religion. But you can’t be a Satanist for long without realising that we also have our share of fanatics. Cassie and I have, for example, heard of Satanists who advocate burning down churches. Such people are rare idiots but it would be dishonest to claim Satanism was without its share of fanatical lunatics.
This is a direction our family and our coven spern. Thus we feel it is important to be grounded in the reality of everyday life. In essence that is a large part of what Satanism is about;- vital existence; celebrating real life.
Cassie and I love each other deeply but we have our differences and our fights like anybody else. We both work very hard. We have bills we have to pay. We have groceries to buy. We have a car to run. We do housework. Cassie travels a lot. She enjoys it but she gets tired. We both fight with our employers sometimes and get drunk with our co-workers. We both like to think our jobs mean something and we take them seriously. I sometimes spend hours marking and feel like death afterwards. I sometimes cry with happiness when a student makes a breakthrough. Cassie is totally OCD in her preparation but she gets a buzz out of being a leading figure in her company. We like to shop. We like to chill. We love good food. We drink. We smoke. We get stoned. We like planning trips and holidays we may or may not have. By this stage our daughter shares a lot of our bad habits but she is a good student and she studies hard. She loves to meet her friends and listen to her music. She volunteers at a zoo and at a farm. She is interested in the news. She likes improving her languages. And now she has a boyfriend and is fully engaged in her first real relationship.
These are the things that keep us grounded and sane. We would never deny our Satanism. It is incredibly important to all three of us. But we are real people with real lives and if that were not the case our Satanic principles would be meaningless and potentially dangerous.
We are Satanists. But we are not “just” Satanists.
We have been planning to write something about Satanism and health for a while and New Year seems like a good time to discourage bad habits and foster more healthy choices. But we don’t really believe in New Year resolutions and in some ways we may not be the best examples of healthy living. In fact in a reply to our last post we were chastised because we allow our teenage daughter to smoke. We’ll return briefly to that issue later in this post. But we will start by saying that despite our own bad habits, Satanists in general tend to value healthy living and place emphasis on making sensible choices in matters of health and wellbeing.
Personal responsibility is at the heart of Satanic belief and philosophy and is a concept which most of us who identify as Satanists take very seriously. We are indeed self centred which is something which is often perceived negatively, but self responsibility is an aspect of that. As far as it is possible we look after ourselves and our own and that means we take full responsibility for the consequences of our actions. This starts with ourselves and our own bodies. In order to get the most out of life we are obliged to keep our bodies in good working order to the best of our ability. We don’t believe that prayers or God are going to save us when we get ill; science and medicine maybe, our own black magic (or psychological programming) perhaps, but mostly it is down to us to keep safe and keep our bodies in good, strong, working order.
From this it follows that we should do all that we can to stay healthy and avoid unhealthy things as much as possible. We should get plenty of exercise and work out regularly. We should inform ourselves about the food we are eating and maintain a balanced diet, high on nutrition and low on unhealthy fats and sugars. We should try to keep our body mass and weight within healthy limits and take pride in our appearance and physical condition. We should not take recreational drugs if they can do us harm, or allow ourselves to become addicted to anything. We shouldn’t smoke and we shouldn’t drink beyond healthy limits. We should have a healthy sex life but we should do all we can to avoid all risks of injury, infection or disease.
However, while all this is true, as Satanists many of us also live according to a more hedonistic imperative as well…
1. Satan represents indulgence, instead of abstinence!
2. Satan represents vital existence, instead of spiritual pipe-dreams!
8. Satan represents all the so-called sins, as they all lead to physical, mental, or emotional gratification!
Not all Satanists follow LaVey’s statements, and nobody is obliged to. However some, including ourselves, do roughly adhere to these sentiments. We are unashamed hedonists. Therefore there is a balance to be found; a sensible path which admits a certain amount of indulgence while staying as healthy as possible. Yet no matter how much indulgence and “sin” we allow ourselves to partake in, we can never escape the fact that we are responsible for the consequences of our choices and actions.
Hedonism has a bad rep, and can easily be portrayed as shallow and mindless. We think there is a deeper side to hedonistic values within the Left Hand Path but perhaps that is a theme for a future post. For now we will simply say that there is indeed a hedonistic side to our personal beliefs and lifestyle and to put it as simply as possible we acknowledge that there are health risks attached to some of the things we enjoy.
Sophie and I have been smoking regularly since we were younger than our daughter is now. We both drink regularly and by some people’s standards, quite a lot. We use weed. We love good food, not always of the healthiest varieties. We have both dabbled with various drugs in the past. We have a rich and varied sex life. In short we very much enjoy all kinds of sensual pleasures, many of which “could” have negative impacts on our health. On the other hand we believe the shear pleasure we get from many of these things can have a positive, calming and healthy effect. Moreover, we do keep ourselves fit and active. We exercise, we run, we walk, we swim, we meditate, we do yoga, we take in clean country air whenever possible. In fact we try to keep our minds and bodies in as good a condition as possible. In general we ARE healthy. We have regular check ups and seem to be in good shape. Many people think we look younger than we actually are. A little bit of witchery might help with that as well…
It is a trade off. We don’t deny that our health may indeed suffer because of some of our lifestyle choices. Perhaps if we only did the healthy things mentioned above and gave up smoking and all our other unhealthy vices and pleasures we could live to be over a hundred. As it is we don’t expect more than an average lifespan and we accept it may even be less. And indeed if we didn’t do any of the healthy things we would run a great risk of dying at a much younger age. But we mean to enjoy every taste, flavour, experience and sensation that comes our way until we die. Those are our priorities and our choices. This is the balance that works for us.
Well okay, those are choices we can make as adults, but what about Tina who may be growing up fast but is still only in her mid teens? We feel she is at a stage in her life where she will have to begin making adult choices and we have to respect that. We hope she will always feel she can come to us for advice and guidance. We are probably quite permissive but hopefully that means that if we ever have to say “no” she will understand we have our reasons. She is a well behaved girl who is never late with her homework and takes study seriously. She is intelligent and kind and a great deal more polite and better behaved than many people her age. So she smokes… Sophie and I were both smoking when we were her age. To make an issue out of it would be hypocritical and would create a barrier where now we have a bond. She is aware of the health risks and possible consequences and we feel this is a decision she is old enough to make for herself. Moreover she shares our satanic values and outlook and as parents we respect that as a fact and not just a phase.
In conclusion all Satanists should look after their bodies and should be prepared to take responsibility for the health and lifestyle choices they make. One option would be to avoid all potentially unhealthy substances and activities and concentrate on sport and fitness to the exclusion of almost everything else. However for the majority of us good health and meaningful existence means finding an intelligent balance between health and pleasure. We will each do so in our own individual way.
The satanist is self centred and self aware and keeping that self healthy and happy is an essential priority.
six six six
The number of the beast. A number close to our hearts. Perhaps one day we will write an exposition of the deeper meanings and historical significance of that number which is taboo for some. But this is not that post.
This is a post in which we three Satanists give our personal answers to the same six questions about our religion and philosophy.
How has Satanism changed you?
What is Satan to you?
Do you consider yourself good or evil?
What is the most important lesson Satanism has taught you recently?
What do you think about other religions?
Are you going to hell?
How has Satanism changed me?
I would say that Satan and Satanism have been a large part of my growing up and it speeded that process up. It has made me feel more free and independent. And much, much more confident. It has helped me to be the real me instead of the person other people maybe wanted to see. If it hadn’t been for Satanism I think I would still be trying to please everybody a bit too much and I would always take the safe option. I think in my mind and maybe in my body I’d be like at least a year younger than I feel now.
What is Satan to me?
In my imagination I think of Satan like a wise old uncle that I love and respect but makes me a bit nervous. But I think in reality Satan is a force in the universe like electricity or gravity that only some of us can feel and connect with. And it is part of us and we are part of it.
Do you consider yourself good or evil?
I don’t believe anything is good or evil in itself, including me. I can be good or bad depending on the situation. I am on Satan’s side. If that is evil then so am I.
What is the most important lesson Satan has taught me recently?
I don’t know. Maybe to be a bit more patient. Also if I want to do things which can be a bit unhealthy like smoking I should balance it with something healthy like running.
What do I think about other religions?
Some of them may have some good ideas in them but most of them are spoiled by idiots. And they have too much about obeying Gods and not enough about enjoying life.
Am I going to hell?
I don’t believe there is an actual place called hell. But wherever other Satanists go, that is where I want to go. But first I want to live a long life, do crazy things and try everything!
Has Satanism changed me?
Yes, totally. It has made me much stronger. It has allowed me to express my darker side without any shame. It has given spiritual meaning and understanding where I used to feel lost and confused. Because of Satanism I have become a witch, I have read and experienced things I would never have done otherwise. And it has brought me new friends and given my life a whole new direction and purpose.
What is Satan to me?
I think Satan is the sum of all the wisest souls from all of time (including my own) somehow linked together spiritually. It is the enemy of any person, religion or philosophy which tries to prevent people getting the knowledge to grow and evolve fully.
Do I consider myself good or evil?
In a Satanic context I am evil (I choose to eat the fruit of knowledge and any God that tries to stop me can fuck off) but in a worldly sense I am not such a bad person. I am certainly not evil in the way of terrorists.
What important lessons has Satan taught me recently?
That I am good at organising and that I know more than I thought about most things.
What do I think about other religions?
I spent many years of spiritual searching so I have always believed there is something valuable to be found in some religions. I still have a lot of respect for Buddhism and still use some Buddhist techniques and thought processes. I think there are useful things in Paganism and Hinduism too. I have never been much a fan of Christianity.
Am I going to hell?
Yes and it will be fun getting there! Seriously I think you have to learn and experience as much in life as you can before you die and then it either all ends or there is some kind of progression. All the people I like or love most will be going to hell wherever and whatever that is.
Has Satanism changed me?
Yes of course. If I’m honest I’d say that I am a much darker and harder person than I used to be. I am less tolerant of fools and time wasters. Some of my beliefs and political views have also changed a bit. But I am much more confident and comfortable in my own skin. It has also helped me to make rapid progress in my career and let’s say, material security. However I would still describe myself as a kind and caring person with a social conscience.
What is Satan to me?
A spirit, an energy, a God that has been glimpsed in many of the Pagan traditions. A force of nature that we can connect with… But ultimately also a part of ourselves; our potential with all restrictions and limitations removed.
Do I consider myself good or evil?
This is something I am planning to write a full post about. I think it is a tricky question because those words have so many interpretations. I am fully, unreservedly and totally Satanic and if some people think that means evil, then so be it. However, if you take evil to mean being grotesquely cruel and violent like child molesters and terrorists, then I’m certainly not that. As for good, sometimes…
What do I think about other religions?
I have been a spiritual searcher most of my life and have sampled many things. I still think of myself as Pagan in many ways and I think a lot of religions have some wisdom in them. However I am becoming more and more atheist and coming round to the belief that overall religions do more harm than good. The idea of Satanism being an anti-religion has more and more resonance with me.
What lessons has Satan taught me recently?
Question everything but don’t ask stupid questions. Or don’t keep asking the same question just because you don’t like the answer. Also there may be more merit in some of the more traditional elements of Satanic belief than I first thought.
Am I going to hell?
Yes. Moreover, Hell is our Nirvana and can be touched in life as well as death. It is a place I feel at home with like minded souls, demons and the energy that is Satan.
Oh I think I answered in a slightly different order. Always the rebel!