For The Devil's Fane's first birthday tomorrow, here's a reflection on labor, effort, and making sure you're working on the right side of the problem: in this case, a stuck door. When issues arise, we often make facile assumptions about etiology, and that entrenched thinking about cause and effect tends to color how we go about … Continue reading Working on the Wrong Side of a Locked Door
The French expression être branché literally means "to be plugged in," but figuratively refers to being au courant, à la mode, keeping up with the times and being well connected to the folks who matter. As a Satanist, I've rarely had much of this feeling in my life. Rather, I seem to rather thoroughly and carefully have … Continue reading You can’t be branché if you’re not even plugged in
Any casual perusal of this site should lead to two key conclusions: first, the phrase "the Devil's Fane" is clearly important to me as a Satanist; second, the proximal source of that phrase is a passage from Anton Szandor LaVey's 1969 publication The Satanic Bible. But is that the ultimate source of the phrase? Are there earlier … Continue reading In search of the “Devil’s Fane”
So often moral panics center on putative concern for the welfare of children and scruple over what they see, hear, or otherwise experience while out in this big ol' dangerous world. As a Satanist, I'm not overly concerned for whether my children or anyone else's happen on a pair of bare breasts—or even a naked … Continue reading What real concern for the kids looks like
World mythology abounds with tales of intergenerational conflict, many centering on the abuses of a wicked stepmother or a son's struggle to overthrow his father. As a Satanist, I really resonate with narratives like these and that of Kylo Ren from The Force Awakens. Parents represent the first and most persistent threat to self-will and true … Continue reading A Satanic take on Father’s Day & the Mythos of Filial Piety
A recent unhappy verdict in a Chicago-area Satanist's legal battle against the post-1956 U.S. Motto "In God We Trust" on paper currency prompts some reflections on how atheistic Satanists and secularists might frame arguments against the increasingly ubiquitous appearance of those words on everything from money to government envelopes and police cruisers to the walls … Continue reading Who is the “We” who Trust in God?
In a word: nothing. Unfortunately, some racist, neo-nazi, alt-right types refuse to rest content with that answer and push ahead anyway with their intended unholy union of Satanism with racism. In a political climate in the U.S. where white supremacy and ethnonationalism are seemingly emboldened by a White House and a Republican party that are … Continue reading What Has WHITE Supremacy to do with the BLACK Flame?
Satanists and pirates share a surprising amount of common ground, both in the real-world and the fictionalized romantic versions of each. Both, too, have significant trouble from time to time playing well with and getting along with others. Humans love to form groups and to pit their groups against one another in contests for both … Continue reading Satanism, Piracy, and Playing well with Others
Critical outsiders often find themselves criticizing religious groups' scriptures on grounds of both style and substance. When religious groups respond to such criticisms, they often attempt to dodge the heart of the objections by drawing attention to extremities of emotion, evoking pity by spinning tales of founders' and authors' disadvantaged backgrounds, against which the mere … Continue reading A Wretched Defense of Wretched Writ
There's much about stereotypical Satanic music and art that I just don't jive with—at least I didn't initially. I've made myself get into it, though, because I see an important reason behind the stereotype's existence that has nothing to do with conformity, allegiance to tradition, or just a shallow desire to shock others. This post … Continue reading Why I Acquired a Taste for the Acquired Taste of Satanic Aesthetics