The Secretive Societies

Chapter 7: The Satanic Societies

 

 

 

 

When the Lamb opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature say, “Come!” I looked, and there before me was a black horse! Its rider was holding a pair of scales in his hand. Revelation 6:5 NIV

 

 

Group Individualism

 

I will not speak with you much longer, for the prince of this world is coming. John 14:30a NIV

Satanism is perhaps the most widely misunderstood religion of all time.132 This is essentially because the groups which call themselves Satanic are not Satanic in the sense that they do not have belief systems structured around the person of Satan, and some groups which do not call themselves Satanic do have such beliefs. This is because Satanism has been merged with Luciferianism, and the established religion of Theistic Satanism is now a Luciferian institution. To modern Satanists, the person of Satan does not even exist.

Satan is a symbol, nothing more. Satan signifies our love of the worldly and our rejection of the pallid, ineffectual image of Christ on the cross. Anton LaVey133

Ritual Satanic observance still exists in its ancient form apart from the influence of Luciferianism and Talmudism. The misconceptions and recent revisions are due in part to the fact that it had never existed as an established religion with dogmatic writings until the 20th century when Anton LaVey founded the Church of Satan. LaVey’s version of Satanism is quite different from the ancient philosophies it is based upon, as it is actually a Masonic order, but the main principles remain the same. These principles behind Satanism as an ideology are egoism, materialism and hedonism.

Satanic rituals such as the Black Mass are organized events celebrating orgiastic individualism and lawlessness, usually by mocking the superstitions inherent in other religions and philosophies. In the modern era, this is done mostly in order to provoke Christians, but before the inclusion of Hermetic rites during the Enlightenment, the rituals were taken seriously. Satanic sects (covens) were and still are individual secretive societies without a greater hierarchical organization. With potentially different beliefs and practices for each coven and no rules or dogmatic restrictions, Satanism has encompassed a very wide range of customs and practices.

The most important of the ancient masquerades were the Roman Saturnalia, dedicated to the deposed king of heaven Saturn, and the Bacchanalia dedicated to Bacchus, the god of wine and debauchery. Saturn, like the subjects of other Luciferian traditions, ruled Olympus during mankind’s Golden Age, and it was believed that he would ascend from Tartarus to reclaim his position. The Saturnalia festivities were mostly satirical and had a kind of organizational structure through the election of a mock government, but were otherwise unstructured events. Both of these gods were equated with Satan in the ecclesiastical tradition.

The Bacchanalia were notoriously orgiastic revelries. The Roman historian Livy claims that the Bacchanalia were conducive to political conspiracies and that the Roman Senate prescribed capital punishment more often than imprisonment for people caught attending them.134 Bacchus, or Dionysus, was a Greek emanation of Lucifer and a subject of veneration in the Mithraic and Eleusinian mystery cults.

The ancient version of Satanism which found its way into modern adaptations is the Yezidism of Kurdistan. Estimates of the number of Yezidis in the world today range from 100,000 to 800,000.135 The majority of them live in Mosul, Iraq, but there are Yezidi cults in Europe such as the Order of the Peacock Angel in Putney near London. Yezidis consider themselves to be descendants of Adam (as opposed to Satan) while the rest of us are supposedly descendants of Eve (i.e., Satan). This is important to their belief system, which places much emphasis on ritual purity, and Yezidis are not allowed to marry outside the faith, not even with other ethnic Kurds (who are typically very selective anyway). It also means they do not accept converts.

Yezidism is a form of Manichaeism which differs greatly from the mainstream Enlightenment doctrines of Illuminism and is more in line with the ancient Zoroastrian and Assyrian traditions.136 Yezidis have suffered a long history of being persecuted by Muslims because the cosmogony of their religion is radically different from most other religions (hence their peculiar devil-worshiping status) but bares resemblance to other ancient Gnostic cults. In the Islamic creation account, Satan is punished for refusing to bow to Adam, but in the Yezidi script which refers to him as the Melek Ta’us (‘peacock angel’), he is actually praised and glorified by God. Satan as the Melek Ta’us is the principle object of veneration because they consider God to be beyond worship. The holy books of this religion are the Kitêba Cilwe (‘Book of Illumination’) and the Mishefa Reş (‘Black Book’), but they are supposedly never shown to strangers.137 The Kitêba Cilwe supposedly contains the Melek Ta’us’ own words.

Yezidi beliefs were eventually incorporated into Templar rites. Both sects emerged out of obscurity at about the same time in the early 12th century but lacked the proximity to be really influential upon each other. Nevertheless, the Yezidis have influenced modern Illuminism through East-conscious Theistic Satanists like Blavatsky, Crowley and LaVey.

 

 

Enlightenment Cults

 

Satanism was once the established religion of Illuminism in Europe, albeit briefly, after the demise of Christianity and before the infusion of Weishaupt’s Hermeticism. Satanic groups like the Lunar Society and the Hellfire Club represented scant memberships but enormous amounts of influence, as there were no other alternatives to Freemasonry in English high society for someone who wanted to be in a secret society.138 The early stages of the Age of Enlightenment also represent the gradual rise and abrupt end of the influence of Freemasonry, which is not dissimilar from Satanism in practice. This means that there was a sort of philosophical vacuum in the underground circles. Satanism’s appeal was that it had always been the extreme antithesis of Christianity—unlike Satanism, apostate Christians could always turn to Freemasonry without undermining their moral values—and it continued to be so until the Order of the Illuminati came into being and a more viable alternative to Christianity could be presented to the Blue Degree initiates.

The founding member of the Illuminati who wielded the most political influence was Sir Francis Dashwood, a practicing Satanist from London. Before the inception of the Order, Dashwood, a prominent baron and Lord Lieutenant of Buckinghamshire, had served as Postmaster General, Treasurer of the Chamber and Chancellor of the Exchequer. Apart from his role in the founding of the Order, his most important act was the founding (or reinstatement) of the highly exclusive Hellfire Club in London in 1746.139

The Hellfire Club was a mockery of religion, and particularly of religious orders, and simultaneously represented the gay spirit of the Bacchanalia and the contemptuous mockery of the Saturnalia. Their motto was Fay çe que vouldras (‘Do what you will’), which Crowley later used as a maxim to sum up the religion of Thelema.140 Whereas Satanism had been little more than a perversion of Christian teachings before the 18th century (and also afterward), Dashwood turned it into a religion of festivity, as it had been in ancient times. This is clearly due to his well-versed classical education and familiarity with the Greek and Roman customs.

The Hellfire Club’s president was also Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of England and a member of the House of Lords. Other notable members included Benjamin Franklin (Postmaster General and Grand Master of the Grand Lodge in America), John Wilkes (Mayor of London) and two other postmaster generals.141 Continuity between the Hellfire Club and the Order of the Illuminati is the most plausible explanation for the early success of Illuminism in America and, like Franklin certainly was, Thomas Jefferson is also alleged to have been a member of both groups. Recognition of the Hellfire Club’s influence makes Weishaupt’s espionage in Bavaria all the more credible, as Dashwood and Franklin had already been reading personal correspondences for several decades before the Order was ostensibly dissolved. (Dashwood and Franklin also anonymously published a sacrilegious Abridgement of the Book of Common Prayer together in 1773, apparently to upset Christians.)142 Like the Order of the Illuminati, the Hellfire Club also suffered government interference and was publicly banned, reconstituting itself in secret.

Dashwood’s other contribution to underground Satanism was the Dilettanti Society which was comprised of art critics who had, like him, been on the Grand Tour of European culture. Other Satanic cults which were still active in continental Europe during and after the Age of Enlightenment included the Ordo Saturnus (a continuation of the ancient Roman Saturn sect), the Steinmetzen of Germany, and the Order of the Helmet. The Society of the Cincinnati founded in 1783 is the American equivalent of the Order of the Garter and is named after a famous Roman despot. Its stated purpose is “to render permanent the cordial affection subsisting among the officers” of the American Revolutionary War, but the state legislature of Massachusetts declared it to be “the beginning of a hereditary aristocracy in the US dedicated to subverting the Republic.”143 The main concern in 1783 was that membership eligibility is inherited through primogeniture and only available to regular army officers. Even Thomas Jefferson expressed concern about the society’s hereditary elitism, though probably only because he was automatically excluded from it. La Fayette, L’Enfant, Washington and Monroe were all members of the society, and at least 15 US presidents have been honorary members.144 Others (primarily anti-Illuminati Masons) such as James Madison believed the society’s influence would amount to an elected government no different than a hereditary monarchy or oligarchy, evidenced by his response to a speech by Elbridge Gerry about the manner in which a president was to be elected.145

A popular election in this case is radically vicious. The ignorance of the people would put it in the power of some one set of men dispersed through the Union and acting in Concert to delude them into any appointment. [Gerry] observed that such a Society of men existed in the Order of the Cincinnati. They are respectable, United, and influencial. They will in fact elect the chief Magistrate in every instance, if the election be referred to the people. [Gerry’s] respect for the characters composing this Society could not blind him to the danger and impropriety of throwing such a power into their hands. James Madison146

 

 

Post-Modern Cults

 

Group egoism reached its zenith in Western culture, following Crowley’s precedents, during the social revolution which began in the 1960s, led by popular rock bands, many of which were openly Satanic or put subliminal Satanic messages into their lyrics. To the horror of the older, more conservative generations, singer Jim Morrison regularly compared himself to Dionysus, the Beatles proclaimed that they were “bigger than Jesus,” and Sammy Davis, Jr. joined Anton LaVey’s Church of Satan. The tagline of the post-modern Satanic revolution was “sex, drugs and rock n’ roll,” and this is still the general ideal which many American and British youths aspire to. To this day, one of the most common characteristics of artists in certain genres of the music industry is that they have (literally) sold their souls to Satan.

Apart from television, music is by far the most widely used medium for the Satanic ideology, so most of the Satanic cults now are personality cults with specific allegiances to certain performers like Ozzy Osbourne (formerly of the band Black Sabbath) or Metallica. Most musical acts lack the seriousness of the Satanic ideology that Cradle of Filth, Nile and Tool possess, so the majority of the cultic followings are therefore faddist and uninitiated. In their lyrics and interviews, scores of performers attribute their success in the music industry to the bargaining of their souls to Satan. Their music is used to desensitize young people by the millions into gradual acceptance of the Satanic ideology, which is essentially just licentious egoism, or organized cultural rebellion from traditional moral values and authority figures.

Like the majority of 20th century Illuminists, Led Zeppelin’s primary Satanic influence was Aleister Crowley. Crowley is credited with being the founder of the modern religion of Thelema, which has its roots in the writings of the pre-Enlightenment Franciscan (and later Benedictine) monk François Rabelais, directly transmitted from the Hellfire Club. Incidentally, Walter Besant, the brother-in-law of Annie Besant, was also influenced by Rabelais, who inspired his novel The Monks of Thelema (1878).147 Religious fraternities based on Crowley’s version of Thelema include the Ordo Templi Orientis, the Gnostic Catholic Church, the Argenteum Astrum, the Fraternitas Saturni, the Thelema Society, the Horus-Maat Lodge, the College of Thelema, the Thelemic Order of the Golden Dawn, the Holy Order of Ra-Hoor-Khuit, the Order of Thelemic Knights, the Illuminates of Thanateros and the Temple of Set.148

I have been over forty years engaged in the administration of the law in one capacity or another. I thought that I knew of every conceivable form of wickedness. I thought that everything which was vicious and bad had been produced at one time or another before me. I have learnt in this case that we can always learn something more if we live long enough. I have never heard such dreadful, horrible, blasphemous and abominable stuff as that which has been produced by the man who describes himself to you as the greatest living poet. “Mr. Justice Swift”149

These were the words spoken about Aleister Crowley when the details of his life were revealed in a courtroom. He was born into licentiousness, and his mother called him “the Beast” (of Biblical prophecy), a term which he happily used later in life. The press called him “the wickedest man in the world,” and he was appreciative of the notoriety. This label may have been a bit exaggerated because Crowley was genuinely interested in promoting a spiritual lifestyle, as opposed to the mere gratification of material lusts. However, this is the only thing which separates Satanism and Thelema.

The Church of Satan claims to be the first and only above ground Satanic religious organization in history.150 Of course, this undermines the connections which LaVey draws in his writings between his ideology and the sect of Yezidis, not to mention the connections between Satanism and Luciferianism documented in The Secrets of Lucifer and with Thelema. Moreover, LaVey’s writings are just a more vulgar or profane and exoteric introduction to Thelema.

One of the keys to success is an unflinching belief that there are no rules. Anyone who’s ever succeeded has gone on that premise; not buying established procedures, business or otherwise. The naysayers are inevitably left behind amid shouts of “it cannot be done” and “should not be done.” Anton LaVey151

Anton LaVey was apparently initiated into Luciferianism or stumbled upon it himself at a young age, as he was not yet legally an adult when he was already helping Zionists smuggle weapons into Palestine in 1947. It is possible that he was aware of the activities of the Bohemian Grove Club which is located near his home of San Francisco.152 He established a rite of Freemasonry while still in his twenties, based on the York Rite, which he called the Order of the Trapezoid. This Satanic cult gradually evolved to become the Church of Satan in 1966. The grottos (lodges), the most important Masonic element in the Church of Satan except perhaps its degrees of initiation, were dismantled by LaVey because he wanted serious initiates, but after the media success of the late 1960s, found the organization’s membership to be diluted by faddists and social misfits.

LaVey brought Satanism to light in America through celebrity memberships (aided by rumors of his pre-celebrity affair with Marilyn Monroe), the authorship of several books, and contacts he developed with several science fiction and horror writers which ultimately produced several feature films. Apart from the more obvious sources of Crowley, Blavatsky and Cagliostro, his Satanic influences included Friedrich Nietzsche and Ayn Rand, and his Luciferian influences included John Dee.153 Much of his written material was inspired by science fiction and horror writers such as the influential Satanist H. P. Lovecraft.

 

 

 

 


 


132 See The Secrets of Lucifer endnote 190-191.

133 “Satanism,” Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Satanism.

134 “Bacchanalia,” Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bacchanalia.

135 “Yazidi,” Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yazidi.

136 For a full explanation of Yezidi beliefs and customs, see http://www.sacred-texts.com/asia/sby/index.htm.

137 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yazidi.

138 For a brief overview of the Lunar Society, see the last paragraph on page 32 of The Secrets of Lucifer.

139 “Francis_Dashwood, 15th Baron le Despencer,” Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Francis_Dashwood,_15th_Baron_le_Despencer.

140 “Hellfire Club,” Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hellfire_Club.

141-142 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Francis_Dashwood,_15th_Baron_le_Despencer.

143 “Society of the Cincinnati,” Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Society_of_the_Cincinnati.

144 L’Enfant, the man who planned the outlay of the city of Washington, DC, put the Anderson House (the national headquarters of the General Society of the Cincinnati) at Dupont Circle, one of the points in the hexagram of streets and major landmarks which include the White House. According to Wikipedia, it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and has been designated a National Historic Landmark.

145-146 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Society_of_the_Cincinnati.

147-148 “Thelema,” Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thelema.

149 “Aleister Crowley,” Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aleister_Crowley.

150 “Church of Satan,” Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Church_of_Satan.

151 “Anton LaVey,” Wikiqoute, http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Anton_LaVey.

152 I have intentionally excluded the Bohemian Grove Club from this survey because the details of their practices are subject to speculation, and because they are essentially a modern adaptation of the Satanic/Luciferian cult of ancient Phoenicia. The reader will do better to do his own research on this topic rather than rely on my interpretations.

153 “Anton LaVey,” Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anton_LaVey.