Hello all, welcome back for Satanic Sunday, which is oddly falling on a Monday this week but oh well. I’m here today to share some of my favorite free resources on Satanism.
To start – the Church of Satan does not give out free copies of its printed literature, which include:
- The Satanic Bible
- The Satanic Witch
- The Satanic Rituals
- The Devil’s Notebook
- Satan Speaks
- The Secret Life of a Satanist
- The Satanic Scriptures
- The Church of Satan
- The Satanic Warlock
Furthermore, the Church of Satan has confirmed that the publisher of The Satanic Bible has never released or authorized an e-book version, so if you have one, it’s a bootleg!
Now to get on to the good stuff.
The official website for the Church of Satan has so much free information available that it really makes up the bulk of this list. Here, you can browse for information in several categories: News, History, Affiliation, Theory/Practice, Sources, and FAQ.
This section is the most frequently updated on the site, and provides the most current information about what’s happening with CoS, in addition to highlighting relevant work being done by its members, such as podcasts, new books and films, and events. The events featured are generally open to the public – you’re not going to find a list of members-only events here. There’s usually an announcement for major holidays (most recently, Winter Solstice), and it’s also where new officially authorized products are announced.
This section provides links to dozens of pages containing information about the church’s history and current leadership, including a full history of the development of the church’s Sigil of Baphomet logo.
The information at The Church of Satan: A Brief History is particularly compelling, especially since the book version, The Church of Satan: A History of the World’s Most Notorious Religion, is currently out of print while a new version is in the works. But there’s still a wealth of information available about the church’s history, all for free! Topics here include The Magic Circle/Order of the Trapezoid, Diabolical Endeavors (with details about the first ever Satanic baptism), Media Circus, and the Satanic Panic.
The history page also gives access to a fairly lengthy (in internet terms) biography of Anton LaVey, and some other members of the church’s leadership – Magistra Blanche Barton, High Priestess Peggy Nadramia, and Magus Peter Gilmore.
This section of the website provides information for those who want to become officially affiliated with the Church of Satan. It provides information about the two entry-level types of memberships, as well as information about the hierarchy of the church. It also provides info about how to get in touch with other members, how to support the church if you so choose, and about the former Grotto System (grottos have become defunct with the advent of modern technology, thank goodness!).
As a vegan I don’t like the term meat and potatoes, but there’s no good substitute here – for someone interested in learning more about what Satanism is all about, the Theory/Practice section is the meat and potatoes of this site. There is really an unbelievable amount of information here; it doesn’t replace reading the Satanic texts that are available in print, but it is quite comprehensive. It’s broken into three sections:
The Basics of Satanism – A good place to start for someone who has no idea about Satanism, and wants to dip their toe in the water. This section includes The Nine Satanic Statements, The Eleven Satanic Rules of the Earth, and The Nine Satanic Sins. It also has the membership applications and information about the Sigil of Baphomet logo.
Policy Statements – An easy place to debunk myths! This section provides info on youth membership and the church’s policies related to drug abuse and politics. It also has a surprisingly compact rundown of the church’s history and a summary of what Satanism is, compiled in an easily digestible format intended for prison chaplains. There’s also a bunco sheet – don’t be fooled by imitators or crooks claiming to represent the Church of Satan!
Essays and Interviews – don’t sleep on this section! It includes essays and interviews by and with Anton LaVey and current church leadership, as well as other members in the Great Minds section. These essays cover topics such as Asexuality and Satanism, Satanism is not a Congregational Religion (one of my personal favorites), and Satanic Brotherhood.
It seems almost too meta to link a sources page in an article about sources, but here we are. The Church of Satan provides an official list of sources, by media type. The best thing about this list is that everything included is officially endorsed by CoS, so it’s all legit and there’s no need to question its relevance. One of my favorite things included is the Film List; I never know what movie I want to watch, and this is a great list of so many of things I’ve never seen.
Aside from the Essays and Interviews page, this is one of the areas that contains the most information about what CoS is – but more importantly, what it isn’t. Information here is well-sorted into categories such as Fundamental Beliefs, Membership, and Holidays. It also provides easily accessible information for folks looking to say wild and crazy things about Satanism – it addresses Demonic Possession, Conspiracies, and Christians who want Satanists to Change Their Ways.
The twitter feed for the Church of Satan is not super informative, but it provides the reader a great sense of the Satanic voice. And again, it’s free! It is witty, deliberate, unapologetic, and reminiscent of the type of wit found most often in LaVey’s writings. It’s a great way to connect with CoS and see how they respond to the idiots of the world. They also share relevant content and promote members’ activities.
Church of Satan also has a YouTube channel. It’s not updated that often, but has video footage of many church leaders addressing a variety of topics. Even if the info here isn’t new to you, it is kind of exciting to watch it in video form, since Satanic material is mostly in print format otherwise.
Remember this place? The building with all the books? That’s right folks, your local library may have some resources on Satanism, and considering how libraries work, they are 100% free! Your library may not have the specific book you’re looking for, or any books about Satanism at all (you can always ask the librarian about it, and see if they’d be willing to purchase some). But if you’re interested in learning about the theories that relate to Satanism, such as pragmatism, libertarianism, and the theories of Ayn Rand, your local library may be a great source.
That’s all for today, stay tuned for next week when I’ll be discussing a topic yet to be determined!
Interpretations and opinions are my own; I am not a spokesperson for, nor endorsed by, the Church of Satan or any other entity.