Paganism vs Satanism:

Marius Silverwolf Heath

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Satanism, The public view:

The most controversial topic within the South African Pagan community for the past few years has been the controversy that surrounds the trend towards the inclusion of Satanism as being a Pagan path. This has led to somewhat of a division within the local Pagan community with two main standpoints being in the foreground, those in agreement of Satanism being Pagan and those in objection of which I form part of the latter. Between these two there have been some emotional interactions regarding this topic.
The following I write to clearly identify the two aspects of this controversy, namely Satanism and Paganism. In order for this to be correctly identified and separated as being different in many ways I do believe that to be able to do it correctly we have to define the basis of a Pagan as well as a Satanist and then progress onto the reasons why Satanists are not considered to be Pagans.

What is a Pagan and Paganism:
The origin of the word Pagan indicates a non believer, a non believer of the Christian religion, for the purpose of this writing I will not extend into the historical background of the word Pagan and will focus on the understanding within current day interpretation of the word Pagan and Paganism, how it identifies and whom, in other words which paths of religious context, would “qualify” under the banner of Paganism. 
Pagan and Paganism is a way of life firstly, and secondly those that identify under the word as a religious lifestyle with an attached path subscribes to an earth bound religious structure, polytheistic in practice, a Pagan subscribes to a multi deity worship or adherence. All Pagan paths, of a religious following within a structured or open environment can be identified by two common points, earth based, polytheistic. Pagans in general can be considered to be “free thinkers”, although many subscribes to a particular path of structure most Pagans are “open” in their thinking and easily crosses into practices and mythologies of other paths with comfortable freedom. This too is one of the reasons why some Pagans left other mainstream religions in order to freely investigate and practice a religious path that allows this freedom.

As defined in the dictionary indicating the worship of a multitude of deities, Gods and Goddesses, very importantly deity that predates the Abrahamic religions, some eastern based religions also qualifies as polytheistic. There are two categories of deity namely Gods and Demi-Gods,

Demi God:
Being with partial or lesser divine status, such as a minor deity, the offspring of a god and a mortal, or a mortal raised to divine rank.
"Some Roman emperors claimed descent from demigods such as Hercules"

A superhuman being or spirit worshipped as having power over nature and human fortunes thus defined as a deity.

A feminine or female deity with supernatural powers having power over nature and human fortunes thus defined as a deity.

An entity is something that exists in itself, actually or hypothetically, and needs not be of material existence.

Why the earth based connotation:
Pagans generally view the earth, sun, moon and sky in a manner that one could say “deify’s” these aspects, the commonly expressed words you will hear is “mother earth”, or “father sky”, for instance interpreting the moon as the female deity identifying it as “lady of the moon”. 
Very important is the seasons and the solstice’s and equinox’s, a pagan, being very in balance with the changing of seasons and solar events as well as the phases of the moon. Each moon phase is seen to have a very identifiable aspect linking to the circle of life and forming part of the Pagan religious view.
A Pagan has a strong belief in these structures, birth, adult, elderly and death or what we refer to as the maiden, mother and crone aspect. All life has its cycles, the seasons, the human being, nature, all forming part of a cycle of birth, death and re-birth. Hence it is understandable that a Pagan subscribes to re-incarnation and the advancement of the soul. 
Pagans are herbalists, and practices healing using the properties of herbs to the extent of medicating for ailments and physical conditions as well as the mental aspect of meditation, relaxation, etc. 
With this practice there is also making use of “stones”, all kinds of stones such as precious, semi precious etc and harnessing the energies that can be derived from these stones for healing etc as mentioned above with the usage of herbs.
All these energies that a Pagan sources from forms part of the religious aspect and gets used for spiritual matters as well as physical in practice as well.
Finally the elemental aspect, this being the sourcing of elements such as earth, air, fire and water and harnessing the energies linked to such an element within a religious aspect. 
Thus the basis of the composition of the human being, the four elements and then included the aspect of spirit forming the fifth element, hence the pentagram having five legs indicating this structure. 
It would also then be correct in stating that all life, animals, plant life, the human being are all respected and protected in the basic Pagan paths. As such a Pagan will quite often be a nature conservationist, a farmer, a wild life conservationist, or even an avid gardener and proud pet owner.

A Pagan defined:
Earth bound Religious aspect
Polytheistic in deity structure
Natural elements included within the practice of religion (Herbs, Crystals)
The practice and structure in the Deity aspect Pre-dating the Abrahamic religions 
Combining all the above Deity, Entity, Elemental aspects in combination with herbs and crystals within the religious aspect is the composition of a Pagan and a practitioner.

The Satanist defined:
We must clarify that there is essentially two basic kinds of Satanists. What I would term to be the true Satanist, the La Vey followers, then, we have the Hollywood interpretation of the practice. Let us look firstly at the definition of a religious Satanist.

Religious or True Satanists:
Relatively a rather small group that practices the basic teachings developed by Anton Szandor LaVey based on the well known “satanic bible” written in 1966 and from that the Church of Satan was born. The Church of Satan has a specific doctrine based on the satanic bible and they practice accordingly. If one actually reads the Satanic Bible there are no indications that expects it’s adherents to commit murder, having said that they tend to exhibit kindness to friends and strongly “attack” their enemies, of which in truth can also be seen within the Pagan following where “ the right to defend “ is taken seriously however the Satanist tends to be more angry in the protection practice. A breakaway happened and a another group was born called “The Temple of Set” of which only has minor differences more in the line of “management and training of clergy structure” but still following the same doctrine based on the Satanic Bible. These groups are rather secretive in many aspects and are very seldom seen within the public eye or media. Very selective in membership and rather dogmatic on doctrine, and somewhat egotistical by some interpretations, the basis of the doctrine is derived from the written interpretation of Satan according to the Christian religion.

The Hollywood extremists:
Within the basic background and context of the mythology of the Christian religion in the definition of Satan, in combination of the visual representation within the film industry of which is based on the incorrect interpretation of the composition and identity of Satan and using the LaVey doctrines and practices there has developed a very popularized interpretation of Satanism in practice. These groups are the real dangerous ones, mainly due to the fact that within this combination there is the developed understanding in practice of anger, ego driven; fear based seeking of control, exceeding by far the original doctrine of the Satanic Bible and the religious Satanist. Within this practice an emotionally driven, quite often criminal outcome that becomes somewhat of a crazed practice within the heat of an altered state of mind. This combination is the more media reported criminal aspect as a result of their practices and mindsets. The mind set quite often is, “let’s see how far we can go”, pushing the boundaries and exceeding normal human behavior, drastic in interpretation but real in practice.

Deity Structure:
The religious aspect, born from the Christian understanding of Satan, is in truth the reversal of Deity, Jesus as the loving god and Satan as the fallen angel and the personification of all that is evil is reversed and Satan becomes the father aspect and Jesus the opposed deity. In practice the Christian religion is monotheistic, in other words a single god, now with the Satanists basically reversing this aspect of the single God being Satan instead they then is monotheistic in practice. 
Satan as the God aspect
Jesus as the negatively seen do good aspect in denial.

Under this heading there are two differing groupings, firstly the Satanic Anton Szandor LaVey based practice with the understanding that Lucifer is Satan, this association I will address later in these writings. Secondly the other school of though is the original Lucifarian movement, this group is an extremely well hidden practice and almost nothing is known of them or their inner activities. There are documented writings indicating that the Lucifarian movement existed in the very early days of the Christian religion, pre-dating the more recent development of the Satanic movement. Speculation is that at the time of the birth of Christ the Lucifarian movement was already a grouping with standing. The true Lucifarian, within the practice of the original interpretation and standing of the God Lucifer, including adherence to other deity would include the true Lucifarian as polytheistic and part of the Pagan banner. However the lucifarian path has largely if not completely been overpowered with the association to Satanism resulting in a lucifarian identifying as a Satanist, polytheistic. As stated if there are true lucifarian paths still in existence is debatable.

Who is Satan:
Satan according to Christian teachings is a fallen angel that was evicted from heaven to earth and became the enemy of god. The ultimate evil of the world and the instigator of the evil within man. Starting off with Adam and eve, the tale of the Garden of Eden and how the “Devil” – “Satan” deceived Eve.
At the time of the bible being written, and rewritten, numerous times there developed the understanding that the evil in man is the “interference” caused by the devil or satan. Satan Is in fact a created demonic shaped to the characteristics of Loki of Norse mythology, Pan of Greek mythology, (all predating the Christian religion), this combination gives Satan his characteristics with the visual of a goat headed figure, well known to portray Satan, half man half goat. This was an attempt to demonize the Pagan Gods, hence when Christians refers to any Pagan Gods or artifact they quote “it is from the devil”. 
At a later stage of this development there came the equation of Lucifer to Satan, this I believe was done in extension to give more mythological sustenance to the “demonic” called Satan. Why do I say demonic, Satan was “created” by the Christians, demonics are created beings, or as the Pagans refer to it as thought forms. Lucifer pre-dates the Christian religion and was the God of light; however because of this equation having been done to Lucifer being Satan the true historical mythology of Lucifer was corrupted. Thus using Lucifer, a Pagan God it lent more sustenance to Satan, hinting at the idea of “very old”, I must admit a very clever combination of Pagan Gods. With the constant “feeding” of the Christian religion to this thought form called Satan, and as we all know a demonic feeds off energy lent to it by subscribing to it, Satan became more and more real and as such none can deny that Satan (the demon) does exist. Viewed as the instigator of evil in man, well with the creation of this demon this characteristic of evil was allocated to him so therefore it is in fact his identify. However, only to those that subscribes to him can this be instilled, bear in mind though, that “All” evil is allocated to him whereas in reality evil resides within every human, in varying degrees, however he does not instill evil instead he feeds off the evil residing within man. The reversal in fact of what the Christian teachings indicates. There are differing names for Satan such as Devil, the original naming, Lucifer (incorrect alignment), Satan and Diabolos, this blaming factor is an excuse for the evil residing within in an attempt to remove the blame in support of the Christian teachings saying “man was made after the image of God” therefore how can there be any inherent evil within man. Once more a very clever twist within the design of good and evil and the image of God against the blame of evil being brought in from an outside source, Satan, doing damage to the perfect creation of God, how can a “perfect” creation, as understood by the Christians, inherently contain evil within. 
Why did this take place you may ask, well, for two reasons, firstly the fear factor and secondly the blame of evil to an outside source. The concept of condemnation to his domain called hell, a place of doom and suffering for all eternity being the fear factor. Later in these writings I will touch on the origin of Satan from the writings of the Hebrew Texts, prior to the Christians “creation”.

In Norse mythology, Loki, Loptr, or Hveðrungr is a god or jötunn (or both). Loki is the son of Fárbauti and Laufey, and the brother of Helblindi and Býleistr. By the jötunn Angrboða, Loki is the father of Hel, the wolf Fenrir, and the world serpent Jörmungandr.

In Greek religion and mythology, Pan (/ˈpæn/; Ancient Greek: Πᾶν, Pān) is the god of the wild, shepherds and flocks, nature of mountain wilds, hunting and rustic music, and companion of the nymphs. His name originates within the Ancient Greek language, from the word paein (πάειν), meaning "to pasture." He has the hindquarters, legs, and horns of a goat, in the same manner as a faun or satyr. With his homeland in rustic Arcadia, he is recognized as the god of fields, groves, and wooded glens

The domain hell (with two l’s):
Is derived from the norse mythology of “helheim”, the domain of the Goddess Hel (single l). Helheim or helheimr in norse is not the place of condemnation, fire and eternal suffering. It is one of the nine worlds in the norse mythology where the dead dwell. The word “Hel” simply means hidden or concealed in reference to the invisible character of the realm and the palpable absence left behind in the wake of the departed.

Hel or Hella, the Goddess:
Hel is a goddess of Norse mythology. Her father is Loki, and her mother is Angrboda, a giantess. Her siblings are Jörmungandr and Fenrir. Her task is to reign over the realm of the dead, also called Hel or Neifelheim, where the dead peacefully go to in the afterlife.

The Lucifer personality became somewhat of a grey area due to decades of being equated to Satan, the true interpretation of Lucifer became overshadowed by the “borrowed” identity having been allocated to Satan.
Lucifer is a Roman God and the personification of Venus, the Morning Star...The name meaning "Light Bringer". Lucifer and Diana were the parents of Aradia who the Stregha believe is the Goddess and teacher of Witches.
Lucifer was the son or Aurora the Goddess. The planet Venus was named after him, among the Romans Lucifer was identified as the morning star. the name Lucifer interprets to be “light bringer”. In the Greek understanding Lucifer corresponded to Eosphoros also interpreted to mean “light bringer and was identified with the seven celestial archons governing the cosmos. 
Quite incredibly Lucifer does not appear in the orthodox Christian religion, Lucifer only appears in the Latin and Greek texts where Lucifer, the name of Satan, appears in Isaiah 14:12.

In the Pagan viewpoint Jesus was not a God but rather an ascended master, much like Buddha and Allah. An ascended master is an advanced soul that is on its last incarnation, not all souls has this incarnation as an ascended master though. Such an ascended master is defined as: working with twelve souls in order to assist in their final incarnation, these twelve souls are referred to as disciples. These twelve souls or disciples does everything in the name of the ascended master in order for the ascended master to absorb any karma they may build up and as such assist these souls in finalizing their incarnations. Such an ascended master has a very high level of spiritual advancement and wisdom, with that the followers of the time recorded these teachings of wisdom resulting in a creation of a religion based on these teachings. From the wisdom of the ascended masters, interpreted by human beings, rewritten many times in order to “fine tune” the religious creation has lead to a interpretation that could be watered down from the original wordings of such an ascended master. Of course such ascended masters were revered, they possessed a high level of wisdom, it stands to reason, and the interpretation and modification in adjustment may just be where the twist occurred within the current understanding of these original teachings.

The difference, Satan, Lucifer and the Devil:
In order to ensure that the difference is clearly understood let us make a comparison by tracing these words back to the origin within the Hebrew texts, of which forms the foundation of the Christian religion in reality:

"Satan" comes from the Hebrew word "(ha-)Satan," meaning "(the) adversary" or "(the) opposer."

The word "devil" comes from the Greek word "diabolos," which means "slanderer" or "accuser."

As can be seen by singling these words, the words from origin to interpretation, from Hebrew into Greek, the basis of which indicates “those that opposes, slanders and is an adversary”, It does not refer to a God, a fallen angel or anything else but rather a category of opponents, human or otherwise, i.e., pagan Gods in opposition when the Catholics got hold of it. 
At the time that the Hebrew bible was re-written into Greek the word “ha-satan” was translated as “diabolos”, Opposers of the Hebrew and Christian God and his people. The words Ha-satan and Diabolos were titles of oppositions, all those outside of the Hebrew and Christian God adherence. It was not in reference ti a singular person or entity. Ha-satan developed into Satan eventually. The original words and the intended meaning of these words were lost as time passed by.

"Lucifer" comes from the Latin word "lux-fer," which means "bringer/bearer of light."

Satan was associated with "Lucifer" in Judaism at the time of the “Second Temple” in Jerusalem where the enochian jews interpreted the reference to Lucifer in Isaiah 13:12:

"How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!"

This was in reference to the morning star, the bringer of light. 
This led to the Christians being influenced by this interpretation and the influence grew stronger as time passed and eventually the original intended reference was lost and overshadowed by the Christian interpretation. 
The Pagan religions influenced the Christian religion, A common bond between pagan religions is astrology and with this the influence that heavenly bodies had, and still has on pagan religions flowed over into the Hebrew religious following. 
Venus, the "morning star," the "light-bearer," was and is, Lucifer. 
The Christian Lucifer is, in reality, an ancient astrological deity representing Man's most animalistic tendencies.

This “deity” “fell" from heaven because of its vanity and pride.
The morning star, was seen to “bring” the sun, therefore the light bringer.

The Demonising of Pagan Deity:
With the understanding at the time of anyone outside of the Hebrew and Christian God adherence being “opposers” hence ha-satan it was an ideal situation for the Catholics to harness this in furtherance of their intent of domination and the destruction of Pagan religions. The Pagan deity now became the target and further equations came to light as the “creation” of Satan came to be. 
Loki is the father of the goddess Hel and is seen as the trickster 
The Greek God Pan having the visual of being half man half goat
The two Gods, in overlay, is the base “identity” of Satan or the Devil. Satan is seen as the Deceiver with evil intent and the visual of Pan, half goat half man.

Helheim in Norse mythology, the realm of the Goddess Hel, became the Christian “Hell”

Jörmungandr, the world serpent in Norse Mythology, was combined with the, Kundalini, sexual energy, the sign being the serpent; this became the “Snake” in Christian mythology that made Adam and Eve aware of nudity and sexual energy. Sexual energy is viewed as Evil “you were conceived in sin” by the Christians, sex is seen only for the sole purpose of procreation.

Now, extend this into the thought of, within the higher echelon of the Christian clergy the terminology of Pagans being “satanic” is held within the auspices of “those that opposes the Christian God “ha-satan” – opposers. As this flows down to the lower clergy and the congregation the interpretation becomes Satanist as in the Demon Satan and the association then result that Pagans are Satanists. Is this a lack of clear communication between the higher and lower echelon of the Christian religion or is this left as an open ended cruel association with the higher echelon being aware of this twist in understanding.

Enforcing of the Christian religion:
How much of the original wisdom that was shared can still be found in the bible within the full context as it was shared I cannot define, surely many of these basic teachings must still be traceable in the Christian religion as we know it today. With the “creation” of the Christian religion mainly “created” by the Catholics many twists happened and to an undefinable extent the original teachings of wisdom was corrupted in a manner in order to support the newly written bible by the Catholics. With this many additions was done in order to demonise the pagan religions of old and by doing so the clear intent was to destroy the religions of old and basically “take over” and be the only religion according to their wishes. This attempt at destruction can be found with the burning times where physical destruction was the aim and in conjunction with this the Maleficarum came to be written of which was intended to be read in conjunction with the bible and defined “what had to be done” to those found “guilty” of practicing Witchcraft and the religions of old. When making a study of this is becomes blatantly clear of what the intent of the Catholics was. This rewritten and “cultivated” and refined version of the bible eventually spread widely and has become the very strict guideline and doctrine of the Christian religion.

A Satanist in reality subscribes, within the Christian understanding to a demon and not a God, therefore removing the possible idea of two Gods, Jesus and Satan of which then qualifies Satanism to be polytheistic. 
The “demon” called Satan was “invented” in order to have a scapegoat for the evil that inherently exists within the human being and forms part of the very essential ying and yang concept of balance, balance of light and dark, good and bad, allocated to be from the Devil or Satan. 
The so called mythology in relation to Satan is a cleverly designed attempt to demonise the pagan religions and deity’s, used by the Catholics as a perfect tool to achieve this.
Satan pre-dating the Christian religion was the Opposers to the Hebrew god, the Christians developed this word Satan and by doing this and associating it with all evil in this world they actually “created” this demon. Because of the constant “feeding” of this demon, Satan is real, but as a demon, created. 
Lucifer is the Morning star, the light bringer, rises before the sun does and was seen to “bring” the sun, within Pagan mythology it is viewed to be a Deity, a God. Astrology and Astronomy has a very big influence on the Pagan traditions.

Rethink and re-interpret:
Taking all that I have shared above, re-reading it, and forming the picture of the development that has led to the current interpretation of Satanism, Lucifarian, Paganism in balance let us now re-interpret using this information.

The opposition movement to the Hebrew and so too Christian God, with adherence and worship of a Demon created by the Christians with an invented mythology as a result of misinterpretations and an alternative intent of destroying the Pagan religions. Opposition to a singular god of which then would interpret to be monotheism and not polytheism, developed in 1966 by Anton Szandor LaVey.

A religious following separated into differing paths of adherence of which all these paths subscribes to multi deity, Gods and Goddesses pre dating the Christian and Hebrew (Judaism) religions. Thus making it polytheistic in practice. No recognition to the deified demon called Satan is practiced by the Pagan community as this in essence belongs in creation and in adherence to the Christian religion.

The adherence to the Morning star, deified as a God, seen to be the bringer of light. True Lucifarian of original practice recognised more Gods and Goddesses then just Lucifer alone thus making it polytheistic in original practice, therefore Pagan in interpretation.
However with the equation of Lucifer being Satan this movement has transgressed much more into the Satanic practice and therefore by implication would then remove the Lucifarian into the category of being monotheistic, removing it from Pagan, polytheistic. 
Whether there are “true” lucifarians still in practice is not known and should there be the misinterpration that came about overshadows this possibility of remaining original Lucifarians.

Satanism does not form part of the Pagan religious banner by definition. 
More pride within the Satanic community will be present if they too access this reality and stand as an individual grouping on their own ground.
There is only realization of belonging intended to be clarified within this writing of which ultimately will lead to clarity and individuality with pride for all.

(for the purpose of the directives of this council and the above being one of the crucial points this extract i published on this page)

Extract of advanced training material of:

 “The Order of the Circle of Stones” group.

Intellectual Copyright is claimed by the author.

No copies of this writing without prior written

permission of the author will be tolerated and

perpetrators shall be subject to persecution under

the copyright act.

Extracted for public viewing: 12 March 2014

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