All extracts © Anton Szandor LaVey 1987-1969
The 9 Statements
- Satan represents indulgence instead of abstinence!
- Satan represents vital existence instead of spiritual pipe dreams!
- Satan represents undefiled wisdom instead of hypocritical self-deceit
- Satan represents kindness to those who deserve it instead of love wasted on ingrates!
- Satan represents vengeance instead of turning the other cheek!
- Satan represents responsibility to the responsible instead of concern for psychic vampires!
- Satan represents man as just another animal, sometimes better, more often worse than those that walk on all-fours, who, because of his "divine spiritual and intellectual development," has become the most vicious animal of all!
- Satan represents all of the so-called sins, as they all lead to physical, mental, or emotional gratification!
- Satan has been the best friend the Church has ever had, as He has kept it in business all these years!
The 9 Sins
The top of the list for Satanic Sins. The Cardinal Sin of Satanism. It's too bad that stupidity isn't painful. Ignorance is one thing, but our society thrives increasingly on stupidity. It depends on people going along with whatever they are told. The media promotes a cultivated stupidity as a posture that is not only acceptable but laudable. Satanists must learn to see through the tricks and cannot afford to be stupid.
Empty posturing can be most irritating and isn't applying the cardinal rules of Lesser Magic. On equal footing with stupidity for what keeps the money in circulation these days. Everyone's made to feel like a big shot, whether they can come up with the goods or not.
Can be very dangerous for Satanists. Projecting your reactions, responses and sensibilities onto someone who is probably far less attuned than you are. It is the mistake of expecting people to give you the same consideration, courtesy and respect that you naturally give them. They won't. Instead, Satanists must strive to apply the dictum of "Do unto others as they do unto you." It's work for most of us and requires constant vigilance lest you slip into a comfortable illusion of everyone being like you. As has been said, certain utopias would be ideal in a nation of philosophers, but unfortunately (or perhaps fortunately, from a Machiavellian standpoint) we are far from that point.
It's in the "Nine Satanic Statements" but deserves to be repeated here. Another cardinal sin. We must not pay homage to any of the sacred cows presented to us, including the roles we are expected to play ourselves. The only time self-deceit should be entered into is when it's fun, and with awareness. But then, it's not self-deceit!
- Herd Conformity
That's obvious from a Satanic stance. It's all right to conform to a person's wishes, if it ultimately benefits you. But only fools follow along with the herd, letting an impersonal entity dictate to you. The key is to choose a master wisely instead of being enslaved by the whims of the many.
- Lack Of Perspective
Again, this one can lead to a lot of pain for a Satanist. You must never lose sight of who and what you are, and what a threat you can be, by your very existence. We are making history right now, every day. Always keep the wider historical and social picture in mind. That is an important key to both Lesser and Greater Magic. See the patterns and fit things together as you want the pieces to fall into place. Do not be swayed by herd constraints — know that you are working on another level entirely from the rest of the world.
- Forgetfulness Of Past Orthodoxies
Be aware that this is one of the keys to brainwashing people into accepting something new and different, when in reality it's something that was once widely accepted but is now presented in a new package. We are expected to rave about the genius of the creator and forget the original. This makes for a disposable society.
- Counterproductive Pride
That first word is important. Pride is great up to the point you begin to throw out the baby with the bathwater. The rule of Satanism is: if it works for you, great. When it stops working for you, when you've painted yourself into a corner and the only way out is to say, "I'm sorry, I made a mistake, I wish we could compromise somehow," then do it.
- Lack Of Aesthetics
This is the physical application of the Balance Factor. Aesthetics is important in Lesser Magic and should be cultivated. It is obvious that no one can collect any money off classical standards of beauty and form most of the time so they are discouraged in a consumer society, but an eye for beauty, for balance, is an essential Satanic tool and must be applied for greatest magical effectiveness. It's not what's supposed to be pleasing — it's what is. Aesthetics is a personal thing, reflective of one's own nature, but there are universally pleasing and harmonious configurations that should not be denied.
The 11 Rules Of The Earth
- Do not give opinions or advice unless you are asked.
- Do not tell your troubles to others unless you are sure they want to hear them.
- When in another's lair, show him respect or else do not go there.
- If a guest in your lair annoys you, treat him cruelly and without mercy.
- Do not make sexual advances unless you are given the mating signal.
- Do not take that which does not belong to you unless it is a burden to the other person and he cries out to be relieved.
- Acknowledge the power of magic if you have employed it successfully to obtain your desires. If you deny the power of magic after having called upon it with success, you will lose all you have obtained.
- Do not complain about anything to which you need not subject yourself.
- Do not harm little children.
- Do not kill non-human animals unless you are attacked or for your food.
- When walking in open territory, bother no one. If someone bothers you, ask him to stop. If he does not stop, destroy him.
In recent years, we've wasted far too much time explaining that Satanism has nothing to do with kidnapping, drug abuse, child molestation, animal or child sacrifice, or any number of other acts that idiots, hysterics or opportunists would like to credit us with. Satanism is a life-loving, rational philosophy that millions of people adhere to. Now we're ready for something that goes quite a few steps beyond just explaining our principles. Every revisionist movement needs a set of goals / guidelines that are clear, concrete, and that will effect significant changes.
The following Five-Point Program reflects attitudes which allow others to decide whether they wish to align themselves with Satanism or not. Each is necessary for Satanic change to take place. When asked what we're "doing," here's the answer:
The point on which all the others ultimately rest. There can be no more myth of "equality" for all — it only translates to "mediocrity" and supports the weak at the expense of the strong. Water must be allowed to seek its own level without interference from apologists for incompetence. No one should be protected from the effects of his own stupidity.
- Strict Taxation Of All Churches
If churches were taxed for all their income and property, they'd crumble overnight of their own obsolescence, and the National Debt would be wiped out as quickly. The productive, the creative, the resourceful should be subsidized. So long as the useless and incompetent are getting paid, they should be heavily taxed.
- No Tolerance For Religious Beliefs Secularized And Incorporated Into Law And Order Issues
To re-establish "Lex Talionis" would require a complete overturning of the present in-justice system based on Judeo-Christian ideals, where the victim / defender has been made the criminal. Amnesty should be considered for anyone in prison because of his alleged "influence" upon the actual perpetrator of the crime. Everyone is influenced in what he or she does. Scapegoating has become a way of life, a means of survival for the unfit. As an extension of the Judeo-Christian cop-out of blaming the Devil for everything, criminals can gain leniency, even praise, by placing the blame on a convenient villain. Following the Satanic creed of "Responsibility to the responsible," in a Satanic society, everyone must experience the consequences of his own actions — for good or ill.
- Development And Production Of Artificial Human Companions
The forbidden industry. An economic "godsend" which will allow everyone "power" over someone else. Polite, sophisticated, technologically feasible slavery. And the most profitable industry since T.V. and the computer.
- The Opportunity For Anyone To Live Within A Total Environment Of His Or Her Choice, With Mandatory Adherence To The Aesthetic And Behavioral Standards Of Same
Privately owned, operated and controlled environments as an alternative to homogenized and polyglot ones. The freedom to insularize oneself within a social milieu of personal well-being. An opportunity to feel, see, and hear that which is most aesthetically pleasing, without interference from those who would pollute or detract from that
This is the encapsulated version of the current thrust of Satanic advocacy. So when someone asks you, "Well, what do Satanists do?", you will be qualified to tell him.
Because Anton LaVey has made Satanism so popular, everyone wants to jump on the bandwagon. If you're new to the Realm of Darkness, suddenly feeling the fires of Satan burning within you, be warned: there are unethical individuals out there who will prey upon you, claim to teach you how to become a Great Black Magician overnight, who will promise instructional fellowship and activities with "True Masters," who may claim unverifiable links with the Church of Satan or other such lineage. With the continued expansion of the Internet, this situation has multiplied geometrically, so your vigilance will continue to be tested as you walk along this cyber-midway. We expect that you will develop the cold-reading abilities of a Carney, rather than the naïveté of the mark. To that end, dear apprentice, we're showing you some of the ropes. Here's a tip sheet to recognize pseudo- and anti-Satanic groups that have sprouted up since LaVey started the original Church of Satan:
- When someone claims to have a direct line of communication with Satan, watch out. Selling that kind of mysticism is exactly how Christianity has kept people enslaved in ignorance for centuries. It's one of the things we're fighting against.
- Look out for jargon and secrets to which only the "initiated" can be privy. Once you're processed through the lengthy and strictly-enforced "degree system," you'll discover there are really no answers, just more gobbledygook. If they have something worthwhile to say, they'll say it. If they don't, they'll pretend they do anyway.
- Check the copyright date. Much of the esoterica you may receive from supposed Masters as "wisdom" or "revelation" comes directly from Anton LaVey, the Church of Satan, or our affiliates. Don't accept the inducements you may receive as emanating from some great brain, when they most likely were cribbed from material released by us weeks, months or years ago. If mainstream writers crib material daily, it can be expected that occultnik hacks would be the first to do likewise. The difference between legit writers doing it and Daimon Oleaginous doing it is that the "Daimon" sprinkles his articles with sour-grapes attacks on the Church of Satan while stealing from us. That's Christianity — tearing down the "other guys," who don't have the "true message." It boils down to more parasitism; without us these ersatz Satanists would shrivel up and blow away.
- The most parasitic "Satanic" newsletters invariably contain a liberal dose of LaVey-baiting. Their editors' masochistic requirements are exercised as "lively exchange." Their mainstay is often the reprinting of any letter, pro or con, from anyone capable of grasping a writing implement or poking at a computer or typewriter key. When responding to such transparent tactics, it's our policy to preface rebuttals with two acknowledgments:
- "I know you're a masochist and delight in hostile banter," and
- "Anything I write or say to you will keep you going for another six months." The Satanic Bible advises to "question all things" — but it helps to be able to think, first.
- Most pseudo-Satanic groups are short-lived, running out of money, enthusiasm or suckers before too long. An easier game comes along and they're off in a new direction.
- How do they deal with Anton LaVey and the Church of Satan? This is tricky — some current groups play the Christian game of handing out laurels with one hand while stabbing their progenitor in the back with the other. Others aren't so subtle, boldly claiming to be the "true" or "evolved" Church of Satan. To make their rationale work, they must somehow convince you that the author of The Satanic Bible wasn't practicing pure Satanism, that his Church has gone awry in the hands of his successors, and that their new (or "authentically historic") brand is now the straight stuff. Still others just ignore Anton LaVey altogether and hope you won't notice.There are those who appropriate elements of the Church of Satan, as well as those who pretend to be the Church of Satan. Their bids for attention range from clumsily photocopied newsletters to slick websites. Don't be fooled by unauthorized Grottos, phony Orders of the Trapezoid, Silly Intercommunication Networks, First (Second or Third) Churches of Satan, various and sundry Pathetic Priests (almost always of the "High" variety — Anton LaVey once asked, "Where are all the Low Priests?"), Mangy Magisters and other bogus diabolists who are cruising for malicious business interference lawsuits while demonstrating their lack of originality. Their game is to get your attention (it is their life's blood), and then to separate you from your money. They know little of Satanism, but to the extent that they successfully fleece the rubes, there is at least a faint glimmer of understanding.
- Be wary of the approach of "You probably aren't smart enough to join us." The only way you can prove them wrong is by joining! From the first material you get, you feel you have to prove and defend yourself. Don't be fooled by flashy web graphics, big words, nice typing and / or fancy paper…and plenty of it. True Satanism builds the ego, it doesn't tear it down.
- Beware of cults offering sex orgies and drugs, or killing animals in the name of Satan. As you well know, these are not part of Satanic practices. The leaders are copying the lame-brain spook stories from Geraldo or Oprah and obviously know less than you do. Use common sense. Don't let someone take advantage of you for his or her own perversity; examine motives carefully.
- Carefully examine any groups who set themselves up as intermediaries between you and Satanism, who claim that they can instruct you on how to be a Satanist. Anton LaVey wrote The Satanic Bible, as well as his other works, in such a manner so that they can be directly understood — they are carnal and non-esoteric. No "teacher" is needed, no "guru" must interpret his words for you. If you are a Satanist, you'll resonate with the concepts in his writings and know that this label is proper for the person you already are — you're born a Satanist, you don't become one.Legitimate Grottos of the Church of Satan do at times conduct discussion groups, where those who have identified themselves as Satanists may discuss the application of the ideas presented in our basic literature. Those who offer courses to "teach" you about Satanism are attempting to fleece the gullible. Buy Anton LaVey's books, view his videos, listen to his music, and explore the works by other Satanic leaders who he has inspired. Use your own wits to grasp them, as Dr. LaVey intended, and laugh at those foolish enough to waste their money on pompous professors.
- Some other groups to watch out for:
- Feminist, Wiccan-oriented, consciousness-raising groups who practice more male-bashing than magic;
- New Age groups that promote LaVeyan concepts, but shun the dreaded "S" word;
- Jargon-laden Christians masquerading as Satanists;
- Pen-pal or lonely hearts social groups pretending to be elitists performing powerful Satanic rituals.
All of the above are subject to bitch-fights, petty jealousies, and rivalries. They are safe havens for small-minded people trying to play head games, preferring the protection of groups rather than really working to apply what Anton LaVey wrote.
This is not to say that all groups are counterproductive to Satanism as a movement; there are many which are productive, supportive branches of the Church of Satan. Like various divisions of the same army, these distinct Grottos and Orders may emphasize one Satanic image over another, but they are all aligned, in communication and working toward the same goals.
But you must be prepared to sort the truth from the misinformation. Don't be fooled by self-declared "Masters," whether they're wearing white robes or black. They are attempting to misdirect and subvert whatever you've developed in the way of ego or identity. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. Knowing this, if you choose to affiliate with any pseudo-Satanic or anti-Satanic groups, you may well find yourself disaffiliated from the Church of Satan. Forewarned is forearmed.