The 1960s saw the growth of various counterculture movements across the nation. From the creation of the psychedelic rock genre to the incredibly influential Women’s Liberation Movement, there was no shortage of United States citizens itching to fight against the status quo. As mini-rebellions grew against political agendas or social norms, so too did pushback occur against the U.S.’s religious presence.
As such, the Church of Satan saw its beginnings in the 1960s when Anton Szandor LaVey founded it. Not to be confused with The Satanic Temple – which is considered a completely separate organization – the Church of Satan has been misunderstood ever since. And, with such a polarizing name, it’s no surprise that outraged religious groups overshadowed its history.
Still, everything in the shadows eventually finds its way into the limelight, which is why we now know much more about the Church of Satan than ever before.
It’s Not About Evil
Contrary to popular belief, the Church of Satan actually has little to do with the hateful, cruel being the Bible depicts. According to their own website, its followers only view Satan as “the symbol that best suits the nature of who we are by birth—people who feel no battles between our thoughts and feelings, and who do not embrace the concept of a soul.”
Essentially, the Church of Satan rejects nearly everything followers of the Bible believe regarding souls, Gods, and morals determined solely by Christian teachings. Of course, there’s nothing more opposite to God than Satan, thus explaining their name choice.
Bottom line, the Church of Satan isn’t trying to bring about the end of days, or convince youth into sacrificing their friends or joining a cult. It’s merely a group of people who – much like any counterculture – choose to voice their opposing viewpoints in one of the most extreme ways possible.
Glorification Rather than The Gods
Many believe that, just as Christians or Catholics place their faith in God, Satanists place their faith in Satan. While this is a fair assumption to make, it actually couldn’t be further from the truth.
Satanists actually denounce the worshipping of Gods of any kind. Instead, they believe any worship of that kind is one that glorifies those who invented it, rather than the Gods – whom they perceive to be fictional – themselves. As such, their beliefs are centered around individualism, essentially making Satanists their own “God.”
It’s Not A Secret Society
As you might expect, the Church of Satan is not a secret society, nor does it claim to be related to any organization like the Illuminati or Freemasons. (It even has its own website for crying out loud).
Anyone wishing to join the Church of Satan doesn’t have to worry about selling their soul, sacrificing a loved one, or anything else of the sort – in fact, it’s relatively easy. One only needs to read The Satanic Bible and Satanic Scriptures, and hand over a $244 registration fee for a lifetime membership. Simple, right?
The Church of Satan isn’t the anarchist or pro-evil organization most believe it to be, but it isn’t made for the modern conformist either. However, anyone who wishes to depart from traditional society will likely find themselves right at home in this often-misunderstood group of atheists.