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Historical Basis to the Religion of Satanism

To: alt.satanism
From: rmerciless@aol.commit2hell (RMerciless)
Subject: Re: Historical Basis to the Religion of Satanism (was Satanism ...)
Date: 16 Mar 2000 00:02:11 GMT

>it is debatable whether any particular portions of "Literary Satanism"
>should be considered Satanism by modern Standards.

I am presently working on a bit of research on 19th century "satanism" and I
would mostly tend to agree with one major notable exception, and that would be
Giosue Carducci who wrote "Inno A Satana" and many other famous and infamous
poems that made him a living legend in Italian letters and eventually brought
him the Nobel Prize.  His attitudes as expressed in his poltical life and in
his other poems seemed to make him perhaps the first "Modern Satanist."

>>According to Jeffrey B. Russell in A History of Witchcraft, pre-feminist
>>classical Wicca also drew lots of inspiration indirectly from Michelet.
>>Michelet was a major source of inspiration to Margaret Murray, Charles G.
>>Leland, and Sir James Frazer, whom most knowledgeable Wiccans do recognize
>>as influential. (Russell points this out, yet neglects to inform the reader
>>that Michelet's book is full of passionate, sympathetic depictions of Satan
>>as well as of the medieval witches. Russell too perpetuates the false
>>counter-myth that Wicca Has Nothing To Do With Satanism.)
>that is because Russell has an agenda: the assertion that 'Satanism' can
>only be religion based on the worship of that which *he* accepts as
>Satan: the personification of evil. his point is not without logic, and
>his contention with Satanists and Setians in his works is evidence that
>he prefers one side of this debate and is not without bias.

Completely correct.  Moreover in reading his coverage of William Blake,
Baudelaire, and others it is clear that Russell is simply incapable of grasping
the romantic notion of Satan.  He writes about it but misses key connections. 
He is so utterly devoid of the Black Flame that its largely an unintelligible
concept to him.

And another thing about Russell!  While his voluminous works contain many
valuable references, the serious student of Satanism is advised NOT to take
Russell at his word about ANYTHING without checking the originial sources.  He
makes numerous factual and interpretational errors that are pretty significant.
 An obvious example is his 1-page -long section on what Huysmans "La Bas" was
about.  It is so incredibly fucking wrong, you wonder if he even bothered to
open the cover of the book.

Caveat emptor!!

>>...(In most of the
>>more sophisticated forms of Satanism, the name "Satan" is understood in an
>>ironic sense.) 
>but the question remains (and even Ms. Vera has raised it several times)
>whether anything should seriously be considered "Satanism" if it does
>not incorporate an honest admirable perception of what or who 'Satan' is.

Yes!  Precisely correct!  This is the absolute KEY to any historical analysis
of "Satanism" as far as I am concerned.  If the individual or group under
consideration never documentably offered explicit uncoerced praise for "Satan"
then labeling them "Satanists" is almost certainly incorrect.  In my
estimation, if they never said "Hail, Satan" or words very much like that, they
were NOT Satanists even if their enemies called them that.

Christians call almost ALL of those who don't agree with them "Satanists." 
Only a fool follows their lead.  The Gnostics were NOT Satanists as they were
accused of being. The Cathars were not Satanists as they were accused of being.
 The Templars were not Satanists as they were accused of being.  The
Rosicrucians were not Satanists as they were accused of being.  The Freemasons
were not Satanists as they were accused of being.  It even appears to me that
Abbe Boulan and Stanislas de Guaita were not Satanists as they accused EACH
OTHER of being.  Did these groups practice rites of which orthodox xtianity
disapproved?  Absolutely!  Did their rites in any way praise "Satan" or
otherwise embrace the values we today call Satanism?  Almost certainly not.

The historical origins of Satanism seems to stem less from actual humans much
less groups and more from the inner fears and nightmares of christians.  And
that just might be an even nobler source!   >;-)

-- RtM

---  R. Merciless

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