In 1969, Anton Szandor LaVey published his controversial Satanic Bible, the official book of the Church of Satan. It’s not at all what you might assume it to be by it’s title. (I’m talking to you, Mom. I promise I don’t worship the devil.)
I read this book out of curiosity and it’s pretty interesting. Some of it I agree with and some parts I don’t, but that’s typical for anyone with most philosophical reads. I found LaVey’s sarcasm comical and his ability to jumpstart a new religion/church intriguing.
Here are 5 points The Satanic Bible makes that should be common sense law to everyone:
1 – Don’t judge a book by its cover (or a group by its symbol).
LaVey may have been shooting for some shock value when he decided to use the symbolism of Satan for his movement. Or he may have just been saying “screw you” to those (like Catholics) who viewed Satan and free thinkers as the ultimate sinners.
That being said, this book really has noting to do with Satan or black magic, demons or anything you might assume by the name and cover.
This book is LaVey’s views on life and how he feels we should act as people of Earth given the gift of life. It’s more anti-Christian than Satanic. It sounds like he viewed some hypocrisy in his early life and decided that perhaps the entire system is rigged and set up to make humans fail continuously.
Don’t be deterred by the name of Satan or the inverted pentagram. LaVey is basically just saying, “Well if Satan is ‘evil’ because he did what he wanted, then he’s my hero and I guess I’m evil, too.”
2 – Keep it simple – just live your life.
This is one of the main principles LaVey conveys in his book. He discusses freedoms, desires and natural impulses that all humans have. He explains how many religions describe these desires and impulses as sin, leading men and women to suppress feelings to the point of exploding and being terribly ashamed. LaVey theorizes that if we’re allowed to indulge on our impulses, we won’t be so angry, uptight, and irritable. If we know these desires are natural and not sinful, we won’t feel ashamed and in need of forgiveness.
LaVey is careful to mention that we should follow our impulses as long as it doesn’t hurt or hamper the freedom of anyone else. So he’s not condoning actions that harm others.
Shame so overpowering and commonplace in our society. Why is this so? Is it because religions have shamed us for natural instants for centuries?
It’s something to think about. Are we living our lives how we want or how we feel we should be living?
3 – Question everything.
Cynicism might not be the healthiest way to live, but generally having a skeptical mind isn’t a bad thing. Especially in this day and time – we’re fed so much BS through the internet and news stations that are supposed to be giving us truth. It’s hard to find credibility anywhere. Everyone claims to be an expert, everyone claims to have knowledge on subjects because they read some posts on Facebook, and everyone believes WAY TOO much of what they hear and see.
I want to believe that everyone is honest and genuine, but unfortunately, that’s not the case nowadays. I’m not sure that was ever the case when referring to ads and any form of media.
Everything we hear and read must be consumed with at least a hint of skepticism. It’s so easy to fall into a trap of misinformation. Read multiple sources and don’t take every Facebook article to heart.
4 – Be genuine, not a hypocrite.
LaVey talks about seeing men at carnivals hooking up with young women and then showing up to church the following morning with their wives and children. This was one of his main quotes in leading up to the spark of the Church of Satan.
If you follow a certain religion, that’s great. You do your thing. But don’t chastise others for breaking your religion’s rules if you do as well.
Just be genuine. It’s so simple. Don’t claim to be something you’re not. Don’t claim to be perfect, because no one is perfect. And that’s okay, that’s fine. Don’t call everyone out on his/her “sins” if you know you perform the exact same activities. (Don’t call anyone out on sins anyway, that’s a bit prude, Janice.)
Hypocrisy is disgusting. If you want to live by certain rules then go for it. If you break the rules, own up to it. We’re only human, here. Don’t pretend to be anyone other than yourself. Because you just might lead a young man to create a church that idolizes your church’s devil.
5 – Take responsibility for your own actions and your own life.
This is one of my favorite points from The Satanic Bible because religious or not, I think we all fall short of taking full responsibility of our own actions and lives. I’m guilty of this, too. We probably all are.
A few years ago I finally stopped blaming others for my issues and took some responsibility. That’s when I started to get better. Right now I’m working on taking responsibility for the direction of my overall life and career path.
Taking responsibility is difficult because it adds an enormous amount of pressure. It makes one think about his/her decisions objectively. It makes it your fault when you fail. So yes, it’s not always enticing. Here’s the thing, though – it’s so empowering to take control.
Jump into the command seat of your life starship. Don’t wait for the tides to turn or for the gods of Olympus to grant your every prayer. Take control and say, “You know what, even if I crash – at least I lived a little. At least I got to drive my own ship while others set sail on auto-pilot.”
Thanks for reading this post. The Satanic Bible is interesting, if nothing else, and certainly worth a read if you are curious about various religions.
Thanks for being alive. Go out and be genuine and live your life the way you want!
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