satanism today and tomorrow

My Concept of Satanism



Satanism originates from Satan. This sounds obvious, and this means that any interpretation of Satanism requires some form of understanding of who Satan is. For so long time, religionists of all kind have been using this name to call everything they fear or dislike, that it's become now hard to figure out whose name it originally was. Hard, but not impossible. What you need to do is to search for information and think. And don't let different names denoting the same meaning to deceive you.

First of all, Satan is not a biblical character. It can be easily proved this way: the Ancient Hebrew language has relatively few word roots (about 1500), but produces many (sometimes hundreds of) words from each of them. Every personal name in Ancient Hebrew is also produced from one of the original word stems — but not "Satan": there are no other words with the "Sin-Tet-Nun" root. This means that, for the writers of the Bible, Satan was a foreign personal name, i.e. there had been some other texts about Satan before the Bible was written. This also means that Satanism originates from the times before any of the present monotheistic religions.

What can we know about those prehistoric times? The information is scarce, and most of it comes in the form of myths. It's worth mentioning that "myth" is not a synonim of "fiction". Until the 19th century, people were thinking of myths as recordings of real events of the past; maybe somewhat distorted and poetically overexaggerated, but undoubtedly based on something that really had happened in the distant past. In order to separate facts from fiction, we can compare the mythologies of different cultures and suppose the stories that are common across the world to be a description of the real historical events, while differences in details between the myths of different cultures are a result of later distortion and literary exaggeration.

The first and most obvious that the myths tell us about is the existence of gods, with whom our ancestors were able to contact. If we don't accept any interpretation of gods as supernatural entities and try to find a materialistic explanation, we should suppose that the Gods were an advanced ancient civilization that existed before the known history (approx. before 3000 BCE).

It's not just the myths that tell us about this ancient civilization; it left material traces that everybody can see and touch. We have the remains of some buildings erected by this civilization, as well as other things it produced.

(Photo by Andrey Sklyarov)
Today's construction engineers cannot explain how this could have been built...

Official history attributes them to the Ancient Egyptians, Aztecs, Incas. However, they are built of stones weighing up to 100 tons each, processed with a sub-millimeter precision, which is a challenge even for our industrial technologies and would be absolutely impossible for Bronze Age cultures. (No conspiracy theories, just the incompetence of historians in technical issues.)

Our ancestors were primitive tribes living near this advanced civilization, the Gods. Some of our ancestors were a race of servants to the society of the Gods. As we can observe in our recent history, when primitive people get in contact with a much more advanced culture, they tend to create a cargo cult, which attributes supernatural abilities to the people of the more advanced culture and the things they possess. Probably, our ancestors did so too, and this was where Paganism came from: as a cargo cult around the much more advanced civilization — the Gods.

Notice that not all peoples on Earth believe in any gods. Belief systems like shamanism, animism, etc. don't include any personified entities like the gods of polytheist or monotheist religions. This is because the myths are not fiction, they are ancient people's attempts to record their real history. Only the cultures whose ancestors got in some contact with the civilization of the Gods had any idea of them.

The same way as our civilization now, the civilization of Gods had its own politics and conflicts. Now we know little of those issues, but the ancient myths can tell us about one important event that which shaped even our history as well: the war of the Gods (the olympic gods vs. the Titans, or the Devas vs. the Asuras, etc.). One of the issues of this conflict (maybe not the most important one for the Gods themselves) was: whether those barbarians around (the ancestors of modern people) should keep on being servants of the Gods, or they can learn some knowledge from the Gods' civilization and develop their own culture?

Unfortunately for all of us, the side that won (and proclaimed itsef "good") stood for the idea that our ancestors should be Gods' servants forever and should never be allowed to learn any knowledge of the Gods. This was how any intent to learn the knowledge of the Gods, or "magic", i.e. any knowledge beyond the things that people were allowed to learn, started to be associated with "evil". The Prometheus myth tells us how the Gods were treating those who tried to disclose their secrets to ordinary people, our ancestors.

The leader of the "evil" side is the one whom we know as Satan. It's important to notice that this probably was not his real name. We don't know the real names of the Gods; the names stated in the myths are just the nicknames that our ancestors called them. The confusion became even greater due to the ideographic writing used for the ancient languages; at those times, when scribes were translating a foreign text, they wrote the meaning of foreign personal names instead of their pronunciation. It was long after the events described in the mythology when the first alphabet appeared. Therefore, let's call the leader of the "evil" side in the war of the Gods Satan, but bear in mind that he probably called himself a different name and that we can know him under other names as well.

While the epoch of the Gods was moving farther and farther away into the past, the political leaders began to think of religion as an instrument of politics. They started proclaiming themselves to gods, as Roman emperors did, or thinking out fictional gods to suit their political goals. This is the crucial difference between the original Paganism and monotheistic religions: while Paganism is a cult of really existed persons from the history of the civilization of the Gods, all monotheistic religions are propaganda hoaxes, worshipping a fictional entity that never existed at all.

Christianity was, to the large extent, composed by the politicians of the Roman Empire as an ideology that should have held the empire together. Now, we cannot know exactly, whether Jesus existed at all and, if he did, what he was actually teaching. The stories that the Bible contains now were being selected and edited by the church leaders for centuries, and even the final version, which they made ready about 400 years after the time when Jesus supposedly lived, is not consistent between different church denominations.

Another religion that does not even try to hide its origin as a political ideology is Islam, which openly states that other monotheistic religions (Judaism and Christianity) are to some extent tolerable. Was its aim just to cover the regions not yet dominated by the Christianity? And, which is also well known to any Muslim, when the Arab leaders started to conquer their own empire, the Caliphate, — they claimed that "mice ate up" some part of the original Koran text that did not confirm with their policy.

Now, we see most of the world population believing in a character from political propaganda of first centuries CE as god. And in the name of this fake god, the present political leaders are trying to do the same that the real Gods did after the "good" side won the war: to forbid us using the knowledge that "god's servants" should not know and to punish those who, like Prometheus, give this knowledge to people. For the name of their fictional god, they burned witches and progressive philosophers (e.g. Giordano Bruno) before; and now, for the name of the morality that they attribute to the same fake god, they persecute scientists for conducting "unethical" experiments and spreading "politically incorrect" ideas.

So, what is, after all, Satanism? In short, I could say it so: to be a Satanist is to live by such a way that demonstrates that Satan's fight against the "good" Gods was not in vain. This means: think independently, and value knowledge — especially the kinds of knowledge that the authorities are trying to forbid us. Don't let anybody to restrict your freedom. And stand against any ideology, whatever kind it can be (religion, political ideology, pseudo-science, etc.), if this ideology claims itself to be the only truth and tries to limit people's opportunities in any regard.

Somebody can say that this is not what Anton LaVey was saying. Certainly so. If I wanted just to repeat LaVey's ideas, I would not write this text. However, for me one of the most important aspects of Satanism is its ability to change and develop its philosophy as new knowledge comes. Many of the facts that my concept of Satanism is based upon were not known yet at the time when LaVey was organizing the Church of Satan and writing the Satanic Bible; some of the information that influenced my worldview was first published after LaVey's death. Anton LaVey's books should never become a dogma for us. He made an important step forward; now we should go further.