Satanism and Luciferianism
As satanic involvement among our youth increases, we begin to see the primary goal of such activity. It has become clear, according to the data thus far analyzed by those who investigate satanic involvement, that the primary goal is to alter people's values and turn them against themselves, their beliefs, family, God, and society.
When we begin to take a close look at the occult, it becomes necessary to define terms. There is a great difference between cults and the occult. The term cult refers to a group of people polarized around one individual who is often a magnetic personality. This individual has his or her own understanding of truth, who God is, man's relationship to God, the existence of heaven and hell, as well as a number of other issues of faith. In most cases such individuals incorporate some degree of biblical truth into their teachings in order to gain a certain amount of credibility and in order to deceive the unwary.
Members of a Satanic coven London, England
The father of the modern Satanic movement is Anton Szandor Lavey, who founded the Church of Satan in San Francisco in 1966. Other important people include Michael Aquino, who founded the Temple of Set in 1975 and there is an offshoot which prefers the teachings of Aleister Crowley over those of LaVey, known as the First Church of Satan. Numerous other organizations exist, most founded in similar ideaology to one of the major groups around the United States ansd the world.
The Satanic view of Lucifer is a somewhat Gnostic one, seeing him as a a principal of individuality or as the principal of change.. True to some accusations, Satanists do tend to embrace a philosophy of 'relative morality,' which generally culminates in a rejection of 'antiquated' sexual mores, "embracing man's carnal nature," as LaVey phrases it.
Church of Satan San Francisco,CA
The beliefs of the Church of Satan can be summed up by their Nine Satanic Statements:
Note: Not all satanic organizations or persons practicing satanism live by or believe theses statementsto.
1. Satan represents indulgence, instead of abstinence!
2. Satan represents vital existence, instead of spiritual pipe dreams!
3. Satan represents undefiled wisdom, instead of hypocritical self-deceit!
4. Satan represents kindness to those who deserve it, instead of love wasted on ingrates!
5. Satan represents vengeance, instead of turning the other cheek!
6. Satan represents responsibility to the responsible, instead of concern for psychic vampires!
7. 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!
8. Satan represents all of the so-called sins, as they all lead to physical, mental, or emotional gratification!
9. Satan is the best friend the church has ever had, as he has kept it in business all these years!
There are several types of Satanic belief systems. The most common is Philosophical Satanism, wherein Satan is not believed to actually exist, but is seen as a sort of symbol for personal liberty. Most modern Satanic groups, especially the COS, fall into this category. (It should be noted that some prefer to place this and similar groups under the label of "religious" Satanism due to their ritual practices) Satan is not viewed as a living entity, but as an ideal. Much of the thought behind this particular belief system is in opposition to Judeo-Christian ideals that are seen as weak or ineffectual. In philosophical Satanism, the emphasis is on individualism, personal growth and human potential.
The practice of bloodletting for certain rituals
With the increase of satanic activity, a profile of those involved in Satanism has emerged. They are generally from a white, middle to upper-middle class family. In most cases they are bright and do well in school; however, they are often bored and are not challenged to meet their full potential. They tend to have a low self-worth and are unable to distinguish between right and wrong because of their relative ethical system. They often have problems in the home and in relating to other people around them. They use drugs and are sexually promiscuous. It is a rare occasion when these last two elements are not present in the mix.
Black Mass in crypt Alnwick, England
Religious Satanism or Traditional Satanism does involve a belief in Satan as a deity, although not neccessarily an evil or oppositional one. In fact, the majority view Satan as a Promethian or Gnostic deity- a liberator, or one who encourages mankind to rebel against its state of imprisonment. In many of these traditions, the Biblical Yahweh is seen as an evil tyrant, an oppressive and cruel deity- which correlates with similar Gnostic beliefs. Many more traditions do not specifically acknowledge the Judeo-Christian pantheon, but venerate the Egyptian Set.
Baphomet or Goat of Mendez
A much smaller percentage of the "Satanic" population are what is most often referred to as 'Dabbling.' Satanic dabblers are usually among the disaffected members of the population, people who feel extremely powerless or have a need or desire to control or outrage others. They often commit minor crimes or worse..
Satanists Manuela and Husband Daniel Ruda, convicted of ritual murder in 2002
They may attempt to perform spells or curses against others, or even attempt what they view as 'traditional' Satanic activities- sacrifices, pacts, etc. Most have no group affiliations, or even contact with other believers; their beliefs/practices usually gleaned from books or even rumours. Dabblers are often obvious by their appearance and generally do not 'blend in' with society at large. This is usually not an issue of genuine Satanism, but a symptom of some sort of mental desease, even a cry for help.
Satanic type symbols found on church doors New York, NY
Symbols of satanism: The most common symbols include an inverted Pentagram, with or without a stylized Goat's head, symbolizing the purported Templar divinity Baphomet. An ankh, or anasata cross, is also common in some traditions. The specific emblem of the Church of Satan is commonly known as the Sigil of Baphomet, drawn from ritual magick traditions. (The presence of this symbol is not neccessarily an indicator of Satanic belief or practice.) Other, lesser used symbols are Ram's heads, the ouroboros, or symbols of ritual magick, and the alchemical sigil of sulfur..
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