Satan. The Devil. Beelzebub. Lucifer. The Beast. The Prince of Darkness. There are numerous names and synonyms for this anthropomorphic personification of anything and everything that is evil, but does he (or she) deserve the rap? I’ve never been religious in any way, shape, or form, but I’ve been around long enough to know that “Jesus is good, Satan is bad.” As per my habit of looking at different sides of things and inverting them with the intention of gaining a better understanding, I came across an interesting character named Anton LaVey.
The world’s premier Satanist and (not surprisingly), the founder of the Church of Satan, LaVey, who died in 1997 and presumably went straight to Hell, gave me the impression that he was much more of an entertainer than a true agent of evil, which doesn’t really make him that much different than countless other celebrities. If there truly is a Hell, then LaVey probably is having a hell of a time there; in addition to his other talents, he evidently was a gifted keyboard player. I can only imagine what kind of band could be formed by other musicians who wound up in the nether regions…undoubtedly, the Supergroup From Hell. Pretty catchy name!
Anyway, I read LaVey’s Nine Satanic Statements, and thought I would use them as a litmus test to see if I was a Satanist or not, so here goes:
#1: Satan represents indulgence instead of abstinence.
Hmmmm…why would someone deny themselves of some pleasure? There’s certainly a time and a place for everything, but when I get to the point to where I’d rather be deprived and miserable instead of satiated and happy, then it’s time to flip the script.
#2: Satan represents vital existence instead of spiritual pipe dreams.
I’ll admit that there have been times in my life where I prayed for something, and pretty much every time, I got the total opposite of what I prayed for. Shit happens, and that’s that. You reap what you sow. Some people are very lucky, but most are not. It is truly a cruel world; life’s a bitch, and then you die. Game Over.
#3: Satan represents undefiled wisdom instead of hypocritical self-deceit.
The truth of my existence is everything around me that I can experience with my own senses. I try my best to be true to others as well as myself. Most of things I know have been learned the hard way, and I constantly and actively try to be open-minded and learn new things. People are innately contradictory and hypocritical, so I just deal with it and laugh as much as possible.
#4: Satan represents kindness to those who deserve it instead of love wasted on ingrates.
This is one of my favorites. People are pretty scummy overall; you give them an inch, and they’ll take 10,000 miles. I do nice things for people because I want to, not because I feel that I have to. You have good relationships when others feel the same way about you. Most sound relationships are based on some form of reciprocity. I avoid manipulative and narcissistic people at all costs.
#5: Satan represents vengeance instead of turning the other cheek.
I think that if more people suffered negative consequences for all of the fucked-up things they say and/or do, the world would be a much better place overall. I cannot overemphasize the importance of bud-nipping; the longer that asshole people get away with shit, the bolder and worse they become. My favorite line from the movie Goodfellas: “You got out of line, you got whacked. Everybody knew the rules.”
#6: Satan represents responsibility to the responsible instead of concern for psychic vampires.
It happens all too often, especially in the corporate world, that some people are punished for their intelligence, industriousness, and initiative, while others are rewarded for their stupidity, laziness, and incompetence. Political Correctness also contributes heavily to this. There are many out there that are essentially vacuum cleaners who suck, suck, suck, and suck but never give anything in return.
#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.
Polar bears, tigers, sharks, and other fearsome predators perform a vital function in all of their respective ecosystems and don’t take anything more than they need, whereas humans thoroughly and utterly alter and/or destroy everything they come into contact with. The world would be better off without humans; I’ve always felt we were some kind of alien experiment that went awry.
#8: Satan represents all of the so-called sins, as they all lead to physical, mental, or emotional gratification.
This is the statement that I’m at the most at variance with. Just because someone CAN do something, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they SHOULD. Is it OK to kill someone? Usually not. Is it OK to steal from somebody? Usually not. Is it OK to fuck your girlfriend’s sister? Usually not. Is it OK to lie? Usually not.
#9: Satan has been the best friend the Church has ever had, as He has kept it in business all these years.
No argument there. I’ve always wondered why, if God was so powerful, and evil was so bad, then why have all of the evil in the first place? Is this some kind of fucking game? Maybe I have a greatly over-simplified view of the world and the universe. I’ll probably never know.
After examining my answers, it’s safe to say that I could be a Satanist, or at least a Satanic sympathizer. I also have a funny feeling that for merely having this outlook, many supposedly “good” people would completely cancel out and/or disregard the countless good and nice things I’ve done for people in my life, whether they were close family and friends or perfect strangers, if not wanting to behead me and/or burn me at the stake. Oh well…at least I know what to be for Halloween from this point on! ; )