I don’t think the concept of a New Year’s Resolution is one that is ever successful. Short term behavioral changes don’t stick – what really works is making changes that improve you in the long term, and relate to the big picture of what you want in life. It doesn’t take the turn of a new year, or decade, to inspire me towards being my best, most authentic self. But it is a good opportunity for reflection, and I have taken this opportunity to reflect on how my goals for the new year (and beyond) relate to some of my favorite passages in The Satanic Bible.
Satan represents vital existence, instead of spiritual pipe dreams!p. 25
I consider vital existence (and vital energy) to be one of the most powerful concepts in Satanism. It is the backdrop of everything I do – it impacts my decision-making, and frames my intentions and the path I want for my future. Looking ahead to what I want to achieve in the new year and beyond, this passage inspires me to push through all the exhaustion and stress that comes with pursuing big goals, and to keep the big picture in mind.
Satan represents man as just another animal, sometimes better, more often worse than those that walk on all-fours, who, because of his “divine spiritual and intellectual development,” has become the most vicious animal of all!p. 25
This passage is one of the first that I encountered in Satanic literature that I felt related very directly to veganism. It is a concept that I believe in very strongly, and similar to vital existence, it is one that has become a theme for many things that I have planned for the future.
I break away from all conventions that do not lead to my earthly success and happiness.p. 30
I consider these conventions to be pointless rules that I need to follow in order to make a steady income, such as having a traditional job. Right now, I have a great job with a good boss, good pay, good benefits; I am not lucky to have it, I worked hard for it! But it’s not something that brings me the deep level of happiness I would get from having my own business. I have always dreamed of working for no one but myself, and casting away all these ‘conventions’ like working traditional hours in an office and adhering to a dress code. Moving forward into 2020, I’m continuing to do the work that will bring me closer to my goals of entrepreneurship and financial independence.
Life is the great indulgence – death, the great abstinence. Therefore, make the most of life – HERE AND NOW!p. 33
Making the most of life means that I should spend as much of my vital existence doing exactly what I want, and what makes me feel fulfilled. I tend to take that too far, and schedule every moment of my life to make sure I’m getting everything done. I even schedule my down time! On the contrary, I know that I really enjoy my life a lot more, and feel less stressed, when I maintain a level of flexibility. It doesn’t feel good to have to turn down plans with a friend because I’ve already scheduled myself to figure out recipes for the week. This passage reminds me of what making the most out of life really means to me – planning to get everything done, but also prioritizing and making compromises when really fun or enriching things come up at the last minute. It also reminds me to be cool with myself if I need to cancel or reschedule something because I need to rest. A major part of making the most of life is taking care of yourself so you can enjoy it as long as possible!
Positive thinking and positive action add up to results.p. 41
When I read this, I’m reminded of a cheesy-but-true quote that’s up on the wall at the gym I go to: “Goals are dreams with deadlines.” LaVey’s call to positive thinking and positive action are a reminder to me that I can’t sit on my ass and expect anything to happen just because I believe it will. If I want something to happen, I have to set action in motion to make it happen. Easy example: I said to myself for a long time that I thought it would be fun to be a blogger. There are tons of articles that talk about how to start a blog, how to write a blog, how to create a website, blah blah blah. Ultimately I realized that reading articles about blogging was nowhere near as effective as just writing a fucking blog. Maybe someone will read it, maybe no one will read it, but if I never wrote anything it DEFINITELY wouldn’t happen. Maybe this sounds like common sense, but if you’ve ever had a BIG goal in mind that you want to tackle, you may be able to relate to the difficulty in figuring out the first steps. This passage reminds me that the first step is always to do something, anything, never nothing at all.
Wishing all you heathens a happy new year, and I’ll be back in 2020.
All quoted material comes directly from The Satanic Bible by Anton Szandor LaVey, unless otherwise linked or noted.
Interpretations and opinions are my own; I am not a spokesperson for, nor endorsed by, the Church of Satan or any other entity.