The person who has a talent for baking and figure out how to make some damn fine chocolate chip cookies, and then shares his secret with friends thereby enriching their world with delicious cookies or makes an empire out of selling these to other people, is someone who is using a Satanic principle to further their lives. If this person becomes a world famous cookie magnate, or just the neighborhood’s most revered baker, and THEN lets people know that his philosophy is Satanism, then THAT is a deed which forwards the movement. Our baker will have demonstrated that a Satanist is a person with the capability to do something exemplary. Dressing up weirdly, making shabby websites, and screaming to the world that you are a Satanist only impresses utter fools, and does nothing to help our movement. -Peter H. Gilmore
This past year has been extraordinary for the vibrant members who manifest the Church of Satan. With the release of significant books, stimulating podcasts, intriguing music, evocative literature, vivid art, potent performances and other acts of creative brilliance, we can readily view the reality of Satanism as it exists in this 21st Century.
Our Walpurgisnacht Conclave brought an international gathering to the Hudson Valley, celebrating the vitality of the 50 year existence of our organization. Here, inspirational presentations by productive, talented and world-shaking individuals demonstrated to their peers that the philosophy of Satanism is one that is timely, effective and eminently practical for moving the world according to their wills, their essential tool towards continually attaining deep satisfaction. They have heeded Irish poet John Anster’s freely translated lines from Goethe’s FAUST:
Seize this very minute. What you can do, or dream you can, begin it—boldness has genius, power, and magic in it!
Only engage, and then the mind grows heated—begin it, and the work will be completed!
And a fitting coda to this celebratory year came with the exhibition, performances, book and CD releases of THE DEVILS REIGN: PSYCHEDELIC BLASPHEMY, signifying the use by intrepid individuals of the ongoing energy generated by a half century of Satanism in action.
While our well-earned festivities were inwardly focussed, we diabolists are vigilant of the context we inhabit, observing the machinations of society with ardent attention. We find that W. B. Yeats prophetic verses again resonate as we survey this passing year, a time fraught with despair wrought by ongoing terrorism, economic privations, widespread irrationalism and totalitarian upsurges:
Turning and turning in the widening gyre The falcon cannot hear the falconer; Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold; Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world, The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere The ceremony of innocence is drowned; The best lack all conviction, while the worst Are full of passionate intensity.
And yet, we Satanists take this as a challenge. We understand our lives are limited and thus eminently precious to us. We do not stand idly by in witness, but move the world from the pivot-point that is the seat of our power: our own individual sovereign consciousnesses. By understanding ourselves, our strengths and weakness, and setting daunting, yet achievable, ends, the means we have at hand to effectuate our visions are in self-transformation. Our essential individual evolution incarnates our ambitions, and thus we alter our own worlds and in that process enhance those fortunate enough to be our comrades, allies and friends. Thus the course of the world-at-large may be directed by those exemplars who are not caught in the tides of herd-think, but shatter such strictures with audacious projections then wrestled into existence. I am proud of the diverse visionaries who have cast their lot as Citizens of our Infernal Empire, for your élan is energizing to myself and all who inhabit this Devil’s fane.
So, from our lair in the Haunted Hudson Valley to all of yours, High Priestess Nadramia and I offer our blessings to you admirable individuals who enkindle our excitement!
As is our tradition, we raise our glasses to our kind—Satanists, fellow secularists, advocates of the best qualities of our species—marking the dawn of a New Year of health and prosperity to be filled with a surfeit of delight:
“Here’s to champagne for our real friends, and real pain for our sham friends!”