Day Trips® New England: Getaway Ideas for the Local Traveler by Maria OliaMaria Olia is a travel writer and essayist. She has written extensively about Boston and New England and has authored several travel books on the region. Her articles and essays have appeared in the Boston Globe, Working Mother and the Christian Science Monitor, among other publications.
Maria has lived in the Boston area since arriving as a college student to study at Northeastern University more than 30 years ago. She resides with her husband in Newton, just outside of Boston, where they raised their three sons and daughter. Maria has a passion for American history, Cape Cod beaches, the Boston Symphony and the Red Sox. She will always call Massachusetts home.
The 9 Opening Statements of the Satanic Bible
Sign in with Facebook Sign in options. Join Goodreads. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Error rating book.
But if that ruling allows Christian monuments, it ought to allow others, too. But what do they actually believe? That turns out to be a difficult question to answer. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Satanists are a rather fractious bunch, with many different organisations, beliefs and rituals. Many of these organisations are wholly or partly occult, with much hidden from non-adherents. Some are spiritualists: they worship Satan as a deity. Others—notably the Church of Satan, founded by Anton LaVey, the most renowned occultist since Aleister Crowley; and the Satanic Temple—are materialist, and reject belief in supernatural beings.
The Satanic Bible, published by Anton LaVey in , is the principal document that outlines the beliefs and principles of the Satanic Church. The following nine statements are from the opening section of the Satanic Bible, and they summarize the basic principles of Satanism as practiced by the LeVeyan branch of the movement.
Satan is a concept, symbol, or force to be harnessed to live an enjoyable, successful life. Pride, for example, can motivate one to do great, altruistic things. Satanism is down with pretty much all forms of consensual sexuality activity. Masturbation is cool, straight sex is cool, gay sex is cool, group sex is cool, and no sex is cool. Indulgence, not compulsion, is an important distinction. These are the people who never directly make their needs known, yet you always find yourself doing little favors for, none of which are returned. This, obviously, does not apply to children.
The Satanic Bible is a collection of essays, observations, and rituals published by Anton LaVey in It is the central religious text of LaVeyan Satanism , and is considered the foundation of its philosophy and dogma. Believers have been described as " atheistic Satanists"  because they believe that God is not an external entity, but rather something that each person creates as a projection of their own personality—a benevolent and stabilizing force in their life. LaVey also uses the book to dispel rumors surrounding the religion. He discusses the required mindset and focus for performing a ritual, and provides instructions for three rituals: those for sex, compassion, or destruction.
The rise of The Satanic Temple has been met with an increase in commentary regarding what Satanism is as media outlets struggle to grasp how this upstart religion has begun to shift religious liberty debates with mere claims of equal access. With unfortunate regularity, The Satanic Temple is confused with an earlier organization, the Church of Satan, founded by Anton Szandor LaVey in the s, to the apparent chagrin of both. Aside from an active Twitter feed, whereon the Church of Satan posts catchy memes and commentary upon popular culture references to Satan, the Church of Satan is otherwise inactive as an organization, arguing that as individualists, it is upon the individual merits and achievements of their membership that their collective reputation should be measured. The Satanic Temple, on the other hand is very active in public affairs. Unlike the Church of Satan, The Satanic Temple has a physical headquarters with weekly congregations in Salem, Massachusetts, and numerous regularly congregating chapters throughout the world. Perhaps due to the popularity of The Satanic Temple, one is hard pressed to find the Church of Satan commenting on the philosophical schism between the organizations, instead opting to forward the notion that The Satanic Temple has merely stolen what they see as their brand, as well as their beliefs. As this essay is only meant to illustrate the differences between the two organizations, it can not be said to be a full analysis of the beliefs of either.