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.”
I suppose this post is vain, but that is ok, we are Satanists after all!
Apart from being Satanists, another thing our family share is a tattoo fetish. Cassie and I became addicted to ink in our teens. At first our tattoos were small and discrete. After university we both had “respectable” teaching jobs and as this was about twenty years ago when tattoos were not quite so common and popular as they are now, we felt obliged not to get inked anywhere that was too obvious. By the time we met however we felt confident enough in our respective jobs that we encouraged each other to be ever more daring in our inkwork. The result is that by now there is no disguising the fact that we are heavily inked women and when we spot some virgin skin on ourselves we immediately plan how to cover it in ink! Yes, by some people’s standards we will be ugly, ink stained old crones one day. Good. We wear our tats with pride and we love them. I can’t pretend I was worried or concerned when my daughter Tina got her first tattoos. I insisted that she wait until she was sixteen and since then I have made it clear it is up to her what she does with her body and how she decorates it. Cassie and I have tried to encourage her to save her money to get work done by really good tattoo artists, rather than go for anything cheap and quick; and I am pleased to say she has taken our advice. She has turned out to be as addicted to ink as us and these days there is less prejudice against tattoos; so while hidden from everyday view she has more and bigger tattoos than we did at her age.
While doing a bit of research for this post I was amused to find that some extreme Christians regard ALL tattoos as Satanic and I read one article that claimed that getting a tattoo emulates a Satanic blood ritual! On the one hand I find it quite comforting and amusing to think I was being a good Satanist long before I thought I was. On the other hand of course such claims are blatantly ridiculous! And of course there will be some normal Christians reading this who may well have as many tattoos as we do.
It should also be said that there are some Satanists who, for various reasons, don’t think tattoos are a good idea. Clearly we are not in that category. We take the view that we are owners and masters of our own bodies and souls, and what we do with them is our business alone. Ultimately we are the final judges.
Like most people, we started getting tattoos for artistic and aesthetic reasons. We liked the way tattoos looked on other people and imagined how we would look, decorated in a similar way. Once we got started we found we enjoyed both the process and the finished result. Vanity certainly plays a part. We like the way we look with our inked skins. In one way getting a tattoo is like having a new hairstyle or choosing new clothes. It is a lot about projecting an image; being seen in the way you choose to be seen. But tattoos can be a lot more personal and intimate; and in principle they are permanent. Therefore tattoos tend to mark important moments or commitments; while they sit on your skin, they represent what is in your soul.
Also, the process of getting a tattoo does involve a degree of pain and blood. Personally I think the discomfort of the process adds value and meaning to the finished result. Perhaps also there is at least a small element of sado-masichism as well. I have noticed that many of us with tattoos tend to, let’s say, blur the distinctions between pleasure and pain in other areas of life.
While a minority of extreme Christians may regard all tattoos as Satanic, our first tattoos were not intended to be Satanic at all. We did however reflect our spiritual leanings of the time in our tattoo choices. I have several Buddhist inspired tattoos and Cassie has several pagan related ones. We both also have some tattoos that have no obvious spiritual connections; we just think they look nice.
In the picture above however we have tried to highlight the tattoos which do have a satanic connection.
In the top left you can see Tina’s very new goat’s head tattoo which is located in her middle just below her breasts. It is large and was rather expensive and she is very proud of it. She already had a small Baphomet tattoo on her shoulder, but she wanted something more dramatic and darker to mark her more adult commitment to Satanism and her new coven. I already had something similar, but slightly more suggestive, which you can see on the bottom left. For me it symbolises the deep and intimate connection to Satan I have felt for the past few years. You can also see me in the centre picture. There is a circular mandala from my Buddhist days on my stomach and I have had the vine design coming down on to my breasts since I was in my twenties. I added a darker centre-piece to that soon after becoming a Satanist. It is actually based on a design from the Mexican “Day of the Dead” and sort of represents overcoming fears and taboos.
Cassie had the big moth design over her chest before becoming a Satanist, but we think it kind of indicates the way her thoughts were going. She didn’t want anything as obviously “pretty” as a butterfly, but something that can be seen as beautiful or ugly depending on your point of view. It is also something that comes out in the darkness and which is a symbol of metamorphosis and change. Around her waist she has a very intricate Celtic knot band with hundreds of symbols in it and a Satanic pentagram in the centre. Below that, in a fairly intimate position, she has a Lucifer sigil which she had done to mark her “conversion” to Satanism from Paganism.
Our bodies get marked by life whatever happens. Injuries, scars, pregnancy and the aging process all leave their mark together with the blotches, moles, freckles and skin tones we are born with. The idea of permanency bothers some people. Somebody once said to me but suppose you don’t like that design in a few years? And with my more spiritual tattoos people have said but what if you believe different things in the future? My answer is simple. However I may change in the future, the things that are happening now and the things that happened in the past are all part of the process of growth that result in me being me every day. I don’t regret for a second my time as a Buddhist or the tattoos that mark that period; it is still a part of me and was a significant step along the route to me being what I am now. We are all the sum of our parts and of our experiences and tattoos are a way to represent some of those things artistically.
Perhaps Tina will turn away from Satanism one day. (Although I doubt that very much). But who knows, she may give up any form of spirituality or she may become a Born Again Christian. (I’m really in the land of fantasy now!) But even in that case, the fact that she once was a very committed Satanist and has that experience in her mind and soul reflected by a tattoo on her body, will still be a hugely important factor in what makes her the person she is at that time.
There are some Satanic and other religious or spiritual groups which require significant and sometimes dramatic signs and rituals to confirm membership or commitment and I can see why such a big spiritual decision could be seen to require that. For us however, a tattoo serves that purpose, and can be much more personal and beautiful.
We were apparently thrown out of a beautiful garden because we questioned authority and chose to think for ourselves and listen to a voice the authority disapproved of. We were then condemned to walk through history feeling eternally ashamed of ourselves. But then the authority told us that if we owned our shame and accepted that we were worthless we could be forgiven and spend an eternity in paradise worshiping the authority who condemned us.
That is the Christian narrative but it is repeated in many forms in many other religions and philosophies. It is the stuff of dystopian science fiction novels. And within that narrative is also the prescription for every kind of brainwashing technique that has ever been used. “You are bad and useless as you are, but submit your will and your agency to us and we will protect and save you.” (Drugs may add to the power of the message).
But subverting these psychological mind control programs there is often a ghost in the machine. There is a voice saying, “This is not right. This is not how it has to be.” The authority machine is aware of this glitch in the program but can’t get rid of it. Instead it tries to associate the glitch with all that is bad and frightening. The voice is evil. Listening to the voice is evil.
The voice is known to some of us as Satan. By listening to that voice rather than the authority that wants our unquestioning obedience, we are breaking the taboo and so we must be described as evil as well.
The writers of this blog do not believe in the literal truth of the Christian creation myth or any other creation myth. We believe in science and the big bang. A few centuries ago that in itself would be enough to have us branded as heretics and possibly put to death. However, we do believe that in the pre-scientific myths and philosophies about the creation and the nature of the universe, there are hints at the truth. We believe in something similar to Jung’s collective consciousness; that as parts of the universe, we are born with a primeval instinct about who and what we are and where we came from. It is a truth that is glimpsed in shadows, dreams and stories. A truth, the authority doesn’t want us to realize. It is a truth the authority brands as evil and dangerous and so forbids us to know or search for. A truth hidden in the darkness.
We are creatures of the darkness. We are seekers in the forbidden territories. We are breakers of taboos. We are Satanists.
And what of that voice that whispers to us in the darkness? The one who calls us to self discovery and full self awareness? The antagonist and the questioner; the rebel and the ghost in the machine? The Satan?
He can be glimpsed in the most ancient religions known to humanity, often portrayed as an aspect of nature or possessing the guile or form of various animals. Indeed, in earliest times a primal force of nature, neither good nor bad, simply a force to be reckoned with. As communities became more organised and civilized so religious ideas became more complicated and sophisticated. In ancient Egypt there was Set, often depicted as a barely recognizable animal, but seen as powerful and clever; a God it was wise to have on your side. But as Set was seen as a God of foreigners and Egypt suffered several invasions he began to be portrayed more negatively. And as powerful leaders rose up in later Egyptian epochs who sought to unify their subjects under one power and one religion, Set was cast in the role of the evil one and other myths and traditions about him were lost. Meanwhile Het-Hert, the much loved Egyptian Goddess of love, sex and motherhood was probably the archetype of the Golden Calf, and The Whore of Babylon, despised by the followers of Yahweh. Possibly she was also seen in dark form as Lilith in Hebrew tradition.
Meanwhile in the Hindu traditions of India and The East, there was Kali. Kali is the goddess (or Devi) of death, time, and doomsday and is often associated with sexuality and violence but is also considered a strong mother-figure and symbolic of motherly-love. Kali also embodies shakti – feminine energy, creativity and fertility. While neither Indian nor Egyptian traditions were as strictly dualistic between good and evil as modern western religion tends to be, it does seem that Kali is increasingly portrayed as evil when seen from a western perspective.
In Europe there were many pagan traditions and personifications of God that pre-dated and then conflicted with Christianity. One of the best known from Greek and Roman times was Dionysus. Essentially a god of good times and hedonism, god of the vine, grape harvest, wine, ritual madness, religious ecstasy, and theater. But as these things were later viewed as dangerous and seditious by the more and more dominant and all conquering Christian authorities, later manifestations of Dionysus; the Horned God and the Green Man, were accused of being evil wherever they dared to show their horns, and went into hiding. But in fact they were only ever evil in so far as they and their followers did not submit to the authority of The Church.
Stories and myths, just stories and myths… Yet the truth lurks here waiting to be rediscovered by those brave and insightful enough to break the chains of conformity.
Myths are explanations fit for their time. Today the truth might seem more reasonable if found in a particle accelerator and described in the language of quantum mechanics. But it is still possible to seek the truth and broaden your horizons by strength of will alone.
Satan is the voice that calls you to find yourself and reach your full potential. It may be your own voice, the echo of a primeval truth glimpsed in thoughts and dreams.
There is nothing good or noble about ignorance posing as innocence. We were not meant to stay in the garden living as gullible children forever. We were meant to grow up. We were meant to explore. We were meant to experience. We were meant to learn and grow. We were meant to be all we can be and recognize our own power and creativity.
We were meant to reach for the stars.
Hail Satan! Hail ourselves!
While the following article has a few flaws and mistakes we like it. (Even though it describes Theistic Satanists as a fringe group)!
It is a bit over simplistic and probably paints us as a bit whiter and nicer than some of us are; but it is a fairer than average portrayal of modern Satanism.
It is New Year’s Day. We sit in a hotel room in southern England for a few days post Saturnalia holiday to see family, old friends and old coven family. We are all quite hung-over and quite travel weary after a week of celebrations followed by fog caused flight delays and travel changes. Time for our alcohol addled brains to reflect on 2016 and look forward to a New Year.
Tina. 2016 was a big year for me. I turned 16, did a lot of growing up, discovered sex and other vices and enjoyed myself a lot! I also had my first tattoos, first serious boyfriend and all sorts of other firsts. Around me the world seemed to be going mad. My Mum and Cassie seemed quite worried about political things going on in the world but I wasn’t too concerned. I kind of felt invincible like the time for me and my generation is coming… It doesn’t matter if some crazy politicians screw things up because the people of my generation will put things right eventually. Personally I won’t show any mercy to the people who caused the mess we will have to deal with though…
For 2017 I will try my best to study and keep my marks high. This will be harder than it has been in the past because there are so many other things which are much more fun that I would like to do at the same time! Sometime this year I will go to America which I always wanted to do, but now that there will be an idiot in charge it seems like a less important ambition than it used to be… In the next few days I am going to get to know people from the Satanic Coven Cassie belonged to when she lived in England and I hope to make some good contacts there. I want to be able to be more open with more people about being a Satanist. I think I can get away with that more easily than my mother or Cassie can. Anyway, personally I have given up all things that people call morals and I will live by Satanic principle alone. I will write more about that in my own blog.
Sophie. 2016 was a year where my role as a mother changed substantially. Where Tina is concerned I decided to let go as much as I could and I have enjoyed watching her develop as a person… Perhaps I would have been the same as she is now if my parents had been Satanists. She has embraced adulthood and a lot of the hedonistic freedoms that go with the beliefs and lifestyle we have all chosen. I have seen many other mothers grow distant to their children during this phase of life but I feel that Tina and I have actually grown closer as sisters in Satan. I have found however that my maternal instincts have come to the fore in our coven where my role has expanded a lot this year and I have found that very satisfying. With Cassie away working a lot of the time I have taken over the everyday running of the coven and it is surprising just how “motherly” a role that is, even in a group of people that defy conventions and love their independence. Watching our members grow and discover their true selves within Satanism has given me a lot of pleasure. The same is true for my relationship with Cassie.
For the year ahead I want to see us all continue to grow and develop, leaving behind any remanents of pre satanic thought. For our own group and for myself I am confident that that will happen. When I think about the wider world I am more troubled. Perhaps change, even scary and dramatic change, is a good thing in the end, but it will mean difficult and testing times for many people and for the world itself. Just when the major powers were beginning to take climate change seriously we get President Trump who seems set to dramatically reverse what little progress there has been. And politics in general seems to be in melt-down. I think Satanists are called to act wisely to secure the future for ourselves and our children.
Cassie. For me 2016 was a year of even more travel than normal, a lot of hard work and increased responsibilities in my job. I loved it, but I realised that even I have limits when it comes to energy and stamina! Maybe in the coming year I need to pace myself a bit better. On my Satanic path it has been a year of twists and turns that have caused me to think deeply about things and re-evaluate my attitudes and some beliefs. This is good! I must say I have also taken great pleasure in seeing what some would call the corruption of my adopted daughter and what I call her growth, development and empowerment as a Satanic adult. She is going to be a force to be recconned with!
Politically this year has been a disaster with the growth of mindless popularism and prejudice on both sides of the Atlantic resulting in Brexit and Trump. Brexit will hit me personally quite a lot in work and my home life. I don’t know if the company I work for can continue to exist if Brexit goes ahead. And in order to secure a future for me and Sophie I am probably going to have to give up British citizenship and become either Swiss or Irish.
I think 2017 will be very painful indeed in terms of politics and world affairs. Trump and Putin on the same side… More calamity in Syria and the Middle East. More right wing popularist movements in Europe… The Brexit mess going ahead despite the fact that more and more people are realising what an utter disaster it will be for the UK…
I have become quite politically active in the past year in opposition to Brexit and part of my plan for the new year is to be more effective in that but also to pace myself and keep things in perspective. Spiritually I don’t have any specific plans except to keep learning and growing. I’m starting a new forum (details on request) and have a few ideas for our coven to persue…
We wish all our followers and readers all the best for 2017. Blessings from the Satanic Ladies!
I want to preface this post by saying that it can in some ways be viewed as a kind of warning. We have always tried to present the positive side of Satanism and confront some of the misinformation that often circulates on the media. However, Satanism is certainly a darker path and is not right for everybody. Moreover I think it is fair to say that anybody who takes this path will have to confront aspects of themselves and of society that most people prefer not to.
Satanists and most of us who follow a Left Hand Path; a path associated with darkness, cannot help but be exposed to evil; whatever one considers evil to be. There have been times on this spiritual journey where I have come close to describing myself as fully evil and seeing evil itself as the truest expression of pure Satanism. This may come as a surprise to some who know me, even in Satanic circles, because I have usually taken a public stance which is quite different to that. But I think that all of us on the Satanic path are forced to experience and confront evil in a way that most people never do. We each go through stages in our relationship with evil and come to our own conclusions about it. Some on this path do become everything the wider world considers to be evil and are not afraid to admit that to themselves and others. Some take pride in describing themselves as evil. I do not go quite that far but I certainly do not consider or describe myself as good either. I am Satanic; and that is enough.
It is true however that the deeper one becomes involved in Satanism, the further you travel into the territory that is often described as evil by others. You may blaspheme, you may participate in black masses and other dark rituals, you may practice magic defined by others as black, the use of blood and various sexual acts may become part of your magical and ritual life. And of course you see the enemy of Christianity and several other religions, Satan; The Devil, as your guide and inspiration. You may work with demons and dark spirits. You may see the diabolical as your kin and hell as your spiritual home. I have done all of these things and I must say that once you start to explore this territory it is intoxicating and addictive. This is where the danger lurks for us. In this new territory where there are no clear maps or boundaries, it is easy to get lost. What do I mean by that?
What I mean is that we are exploring areas or our mind and psyche that are considered taboo and forbidden by many and within those dark territories there are things we don’t really think are wrong but there are other things which still may be wrong or evil or against our true nature and judgement. In the darkness and the ecstasy of exploration we can confuse those things. To put it another way, we can begin to see and experience everything in this territory as equally valid and equally much our true nature. We glimpse that we are capable of every kind of evil and may come to feel that every kind of evil is acceptable for us. This is a stage that most, if not all, people who take a Left Hand Spiritual path; or in a Jungian sense explore their dark side, must go through. I have had moments like that. I have had moments when I have felt that to kill somebody who stands in my way would be no more wrong than fully enjoying my sexuality. I have had moments when I have felt that the power to be sadistic and cruel in the extreme without any guilt or shame would be a beautiful and liberating thing. Yes, I have had moments when I have felt that everything I personally abhorred and previously thought to be really evil is everything I actually want to be. I doubt that there are many people on a similar path who have not occasionally had these thoughts and feelings.
I should add that these moments were just that: moments. When the moments were over they became stimuli for deep soul searching and internal dialogue. They became uncomfortable points of self reflection. They became lessons which slowly and uncomfortably lead to personal growth and understanding. But it is easy to see and understand how for some people (and I would never say that I am immune) these moments could become extended… These moments could become their new reality.
Yet still I think this a path worth continuing on. It is dangerous, but it is worth it for some of us (including my partner and my daughter). I would like to speak about why I think it is worth it in the context of what Left Hand Paths are really about. And finally I would like to indicate why I think that being a Theistic Satanist offers a certain amount of guidance and protection that may be missing in some other Left Hand Paths.
The idea of the Left Hand Path first surfaced in Eastern, Tantric traditions. To over-simplify it was seen as a difficult but sometimes faster path to enlightenment which depended heavily on breaking the taboos and conventions of a given time and place. For example, within communities that were vegetarian, Tantric practioners of the left hand path would eat meat. In places where sexual morals were conservative and restrictive, those of the left hand path would explore and practice all forms of sexuality that were considered taboo or depraved. The idea was two fold. Firstly (and this may be a more modern and more western interpretation) breaking conventions and taboos can be seen as a test of the moral validity of such taboos in the first place. Secondly (and perhaps most importantly in the original traditions) the aim was for the soul to remain untainted no matter how much the body was engaged with material depravity and corruption; to remain true to your higher self in the midst of the most extreme material experiences.
I try to incorporate both these aspects into my own version of the left hand path and try to remind myself of the point of it all as often as possible. Thus with each taboo that I choose to break, I evaluate all that I gain or loose by doing so and come to a new value judgement of my own about how I should regard that thing or that action myself. Moreover, when I am momentarily overwhelmed by the sensation or possibilities of something, I try not to let it overpower or consume me but rather allow my higher self to observe and note it. A little bit of Buddhist knowledge and background is very helpful here.
So an understanding of what the Left Hand Path is about can be very helpful and protective; I would say essential. However personally I find that that alone is not enough. In the moments where I have been in most danger of losing myself, it was in fact the presence of Satan that saved me.
Satan first permeated my soul in the shape of the Pagan Horned God, a figure whose voice called out to me to be heard rather than side-lined or ignored. Within the circles I moved in, people were appalled or even terrified that their somewhat neutered Horned God might be associated with the Christian Devil. Yet to me the similarities were clear. I then began to see the Christian portrayal of Satan as false and misleading. I felt His displeasure at being portrayed in such a limited and entirely negative way. And it was because I began to recognize the depiction of Satan as entirely evil as false that I became a Satanist. So when I am exploring the darker areas of my soul, it is a voice of wisdom that guides me and in particular urges me not to linger in dangerous areas for too long. It is Satan once again reminding me that he is not the caricature of evil that Christians would have us believe.
The Satanic path does require us to explore the nature of evil within ourselves and beyond, but it certainly does not require us to become evil.
I titled this post “transcending good and evil” but that might be a little misleading. What this post is about and indeed what Satanism itself is about to a large degree is transcending other people’s definitions of good and evil. As Satanists we all eventually leave behind worldly notions of good and evil and trust instead on our Satanic instincts. But we train and hone those instincts. The lessons can be hard and we can get lost but we learn and we grow. We are always accountable for our own actions and choices. We allow ourselves more freedoms but those freedoms have dangers. This is the path we have chosen but our safety on the path is not guaranteed. We can fall. We can get lost. Some people do.
For me personally (headstrong and arrogant as I can be), a focus on the true nature of Satan and a willingness to heed his advice is the strongest safety line.
For the benefit of anybody who has been skim reading this without much concentration or understanding what I am saying is that while I have glimpsed my own potential to be evil (and will do again I am sure) I have chosen not to be, and that it is Satan who keeps my moral compass pointing in the right direction.
And if you are still confused don’t worry, but don’t ever explore Satanism; you are not ready.
We have mentioned our Coven in passing but have not said much about it until now and probably won’t say much in future. The main reason for this is to protect the privacy of our members. I decided to write something now for two reasons. Firstly a few people have asked us things relating to our Coven or Coven Satanism in general. Secondly because a few of our recent posts seemed to be interpreted as if we were apologizing for our beliefs. That is not the case. We are Theistic Satanists. We are Devil Worshipers (although we have our own interpretation of what the words “devil” and “worship” actually mean). Within our coven we are Satanists in the raw and to the core. That is what we are. No apologies.
You certainly don’t have to be part of a coven in order to be a Satanist, most Satanists aren’t. In fact probably most Satanists are rather solitary, keeping most of their beliefs and practices to themselves. This suites the psychological profile of many of the Satanists we know who for many reasons are often quite reclusive and introverted. We, on the other hand, are rather extrovert and have come to appreciate the comradery and power that can be experienced as part of a group united by similar beliefs and shared experiences.
I had coven experience before becoming a Satanist as part of a Wiccan coven. When I fully converted to Satanism I was keen to experience a Satanic Coven. It was kind of a test for me. I had already made a commitment to Satan but I wanted to immerse myself in Satanic lifestyle and practice in order to check for myself if I had done the right thing. It seemed to me that being part of a Coven would be like jumping in to the deep end of the dark pool and I would either sink or swim. (I don’t recommend everybody to follow my example but that kind of all or nothing approach suits my personality). For me it worked. The things that I was perhaps least sure and most uncomfortable about, quickly became comfortable norms for me. It was like finding my true Satanic nature and celebrating it rather than hiding it. So, for me being part of a Satanic Coven was a big and very significant part of my personal journey and development. Even so, I recognize that for many people this step, and this experience is not necessary at all.
So I was a member of a Satanic coven in the UK where I was taught, nurtured and well treated. But then life intervened; I fell in love, was traveling a lot and missed some meetings and then I decided to move to another country altogether.
At first Sophie and I were content to go it alone and with hindsight I think that was good for our development as a couple but eventually our thoughts turned to establishing our own coven.
Our coven came together gradually and organically. At first it was just a very informal group of friends in which Sophie and I were the only ones who fully identified as Satanists. The other people were what I would describe as open minded spiritual searchers from various backgrounds including Buddhism and Darker Pagan strands. Our meetings were just social gatherings at which we would discuss and share ideas over a few glasses of wine. (Okay, sometimes more than just a few glasses of wine)! It was great for me as I had recently relocated to Switzerland and was unable to keep up my commitments to my British based coven; so this new hard core group of friends became my new extended family. As time went by several members expressed an interest in the magical and ritualistic aspects of Satanism as Sophie and I practiced it. As a result we experimented with a few group rituals and I gave a bit of guidance and direction for those that were keen to explore witchcraft more fully. And so it began… Quite soon after that our friends, one by one, decided to fully embrace Satanism themselves and our meetings became more organised and regular.
No two covens of any variety are exactly the same and this is probably even more true in Satanic circles. There is no rule book and no single right way to do things. The shape and structure of our coven is based loosely on my previous coven experiences in Wicca and Satanism, simplified and tailored to our own needs. At present we have ten regular members and a few other interested parties. We have several teachers, scientists of various descriptions, an artist, two musicians and several business people. I am nominally the High Priestess and Sophie is the Coven Mother but I think we all acknowledge that in all practical aspects Sophie is the boss (or official Dominatrix, as one of our members put it)! As far as possible we share all jobs and responsibilities around the coven.
We try to meet monthly. Many of us have jobs which involve a lot of travel, so finding times we can all meet is a task in itself. For practical reasons we only celebrate two Satanic holidays in addition to our own birthdays, these are Beltane/Walpurgis Night around Mayday and Samhain/Halloween in the Autumn.
We decided from the beginning that the Coven needs a purpose and a direction. Ours is to further our members self interests and promote Satanic ideas and philosophy in the wider world. These things may seem somewhat vague to outsiders but among ourselves they are well understood and fine tuned.
Some of our meetings are still mostly social or based around structured discussions or debates but ritualistic and magical gatherings form the core of what we do. Also with ten birthdays spread out through the year there is plenty of fun and debauchery as well!
Clearly none of us would remain in the coven if we did not find it pleasurable and advantageous to do so.
Personally I feel it has helped me to learn new skills in terms of people management, ritual preparation, psychological understanding and manipulation and it has brought the “crone” aspect of my persona to the fore. In a practical sense I think the magic and manipulation we perform as a group is significantly more powerful that what I could normally achieve alone. And perhaps most importantly as a Theistic Satanist, I feel ever closer to and more in tune with Satan or my own Satanic nature.
Having said all that, I would urge caution to anybody looking to join a Satanic coven. It simply isn’t necessary or beneficial for everybody. I would describe ours as a fairly gentle and understanding Coven, but we are Satanists and our ways and morals reflect that. Blood is sometimes used in our rituals (our own; freely and hygienically given).There is some nudity and sexual content in some of our rituals. It would be easy to take advantage of new members keen to prove themselves or afraid to say no. We choose not to take advantage. Other covens may take the view that fools get what they deserve.
I said at the start that we are perhaps more outgoing and extrovert than some Satanists. That may be one reason why the Coven works for us. I also think that being involved with other people helps to constantly underline and fine tune our beliefs and thus ensure continual growth. The coven also becomes an extension of family with all the advantages and some of the strains that brings.