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#114470 - 09/24/17 06:37 AM "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis
Obitus Offline
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Registered: 07/20/17
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While everyone in here is probably more than familiar with the tired old argument as to whether or not LaVey and the early Church were flirting with non-Atheist metaphysics, there's a certain quote from LaVey in the "Satanic Rituals" that seems to be largely ignored by both sides of the dispute:

“The Yezidi interpretation of God was in the purest Satanic tradition. . . . If there was any semblance of a personal manifestation of God, it was through Satan, who instructed and guided the Yezidi toward an understanding of the multifaceted principles of Creation, much like the Platonic idea that the Absolute was itself static and transcendental. This concept of ‘God’ is essentially the position taken by the more highly evolved Satanists.”
- LaVey, The Satanic Rituals, 1972

Now, to me, this highly ignored little passage is all sorts of telling. And it's kind of hard to skirt around and interpret in a purely symbolic way. Was LaVey just talking straight out of his ass right there? And what of the ritual this passage forms part of the intro to? Sitting around a statue of Melek Taus while someone recites a bluntly theistic document purporting to be Satan speaking, with no ulterior "magical" motive, also hardly seems characteristic of the mindset that rituals are just for achieving material ends.

And I'd like to point out that whether or not Satan really uttered that text, or indeed whether or not you view Melek Taus as "Satan" is besides the point. LaVey believed the Yezidis were "Satanic," and did associate Melek Taus with Satan. This post is about LaVey's mindset when he wrote the "Satanic Rituals," not about how right or wrong LaVey was about Yezidi beliefs.

Also, in connection to the Yezidis, it's interesting that in the "Satanic Bible" and the "Satanic Rituals," LaVey unambiguously refers to them as "Devil Worshippers," and simultaneously describes them as "Satanic." Apparently, at least when the Yezidis were concerned, for LaVey, "Satanism" and "Devil Worship" became awfully close to interchangeable.

So how do you interpret the LaVey passage quoted above? For me, it seems pretty obvious that on that day, LaVey was of the mindset that Satan is the "personal" manifestation of the impersonal "god" he defines in the Satanic Bible. It dovetails nicely with that passage from the old CoS grotto manual:

"Satanists are strange creatures. We know that the idea of an omniscient, all-powerful god who watches over each of us and listens to each of our prayers is an irrationality and a deep offense to any advanced mind. We see no evidence of justice or answered prayers in the world around us. If the Judeo-Christian 'God' is all- powerful, all-knowing, he's damned churlish and incompetent.

"But the Satanist is also faced with his subjective experience of what we choose to characterize as 'Satan' in our lives. Satan is a very personal Companion. We admire Satan and wish to gain his respect, therefore we act as he would - in defiance of anything or anyone who would demand our worship. It would be an insult to offer him unthinking worship. But this is fact: Unlike the promises of the Christians, Satan does develop an intensely intimate relationship with each of his followers. You may not perceive it until you train yourself to sense it, but since you have achieved the position of Grotto Master, You have probably already been touched by it. He will remain with you until your breath leaves your body."

Satan as the "personal manifestation of God," especially a deist conception of "God," seems to be more or less the same sentiment expressed later in the "Book of Coming Forth by Night" where Set is identified as the "Ageless Intelligence of this Universe." And I think it's entirely plausible that the reason this is so is not a mere coincidence, but evidence that LaVey was indeed at some point on the same wavelength as Aquino. And I see no reason to argue with LaVey that this certain theological position is one taken by the "more highly evolved Satanists."

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#114482 - 09/24/17 07:20 PM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Obitus]
Bartho LeMule Offline
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Registered: 10/13/13
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Interesting...

We'll have to wait for SIN3 and see what she has to say about all this.

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#114483 - 09/24/17 07:25 PM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Obitus]
Czereda Offline
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Registered: 03/14/11
Posts: 2089
Loc: Poland
 Quote:
Sitting around a statue of Melek Taus while someone recites a bluntly theistic document purporting to be Satan speaking, with no ulterior "magical" motive, also hardly seems characteristic of the mindset that rituals are just for achieving material ends.


I think you ignore the overall message and purpose of "The Satanic Rituals", which LaVey stated, albeit indirectly, in the introduction. The point is to acquaint the reader with the darker devilish elements from the culture of the past, from various myths and works of art, all of that which Christianity sought to demonize, and to use that well of fantasy to enhance one's imagination, liberate the self from the Christian propaganda and to understand the nature of "evil", which is nothing else than demonizing the Other. This is why LaVey says that to Catholics Protestants were a devil, that Knights Templars and the Bavarian Illuminati were devils and then Yezidis to Muslims and so on. Understanding the human need for scapegoating the Other is helpful for empowering oneself; sort of "Know thy enemy and his tactics and use them against him."

And so Satan has existed as a convenient enemy to be employed when needed-one who could be beaten by any lily-livered popin ay who could find the time to arm himself with a barrage of scriptural rhetoric. Thus Satan has made cowards into heroes, weaklings into gladiators, and wretches into nobles. That was so simply because his adversaries were able to tailor the rules of the game to suit their own needs. Now that there are avowed Satanists, who make their own standards, the rules of the game change, if a substance is harmful, its poisonous effects will speak for it. if Satanists are powerfully evil, then their foes have valid fears.

The godly, have toughened Satan in his role of scapegoat, while keeping him nourished and handy for their needs. Now it is they who have weakened and atrophied while Satan breaks his bonds. Now Satan's people can speak for Him, and they have a weapon calculated to annihilate the feeble and insipid mournings of the pulpit pounders of the past. That weapon is logic.

The Satanist can easily invent fairy tales to match anything contained in holy writ, for his background is the very childhood of fiction-the myths immemorial of all peoples and all nations. And he admits they are fairy tales. The Christian cannot-no, dares not-admit that his heritage is fairy tales, yet he depends on them for his pious sustenance. The Satanist maintains a storehouse of avowed fantasy gathered from all cultures and from all ages. With his unfettered access to logic as well, he now becomes a powerful adversary of Satan's past tormentors.


In this passage it is clearly stated that the religious myths, also the ones included in "The Satanic Rituals", are regarded by LaVey as fantasy and fairy tales which, if accompanied with logic, can nonetheless be useful for a Satanist for the reasons I stated above. Anyway, at least, this is how I understand it.

I wouldn't treat the grotto manuals as authoritative texts. LaVey could as well cater to theists to enhance membership. Speculating about the author's intimate feelings and beliefs on the basis of his works is kinda pointless. Each writer writes with his audience in mind so does he always have to be sincere?

That aside, the Yezidi Melec Taus could hardly be considered Satanic. In spite of being demonized by Muslims, he remains loyal to God. Although in "Sacred Books and Traditions of the Yezidiz" by Isya Joseph it is mentioned that he opened the secret chamber that God forbade him to open, where he found a piece of paper on which it was written that only God should be served and worshiped. This is why he refused to bow to Adam and, as the author explains, this is where the word "heretic" comes from. And what people were considered heretics? Were they truly evil or just demonized for their transgressions against one and the only "Truth"? That's sort of a point LaVey makes.
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#114486 - 09/25/17 12:29 AM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Czereda]
Obitus Offline
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I recognize, and appreciate, the fact that the SR are chock full of all sorts of tongue-in-cheek stretches of the truth. The SB also contains a similar disclaimer in the preface:

"Herein you will find truth—and fantasy. Each is necessary for the other to exist; but each must be recognized for what it is. What you see may not always please you; but you will see!"

However, I think it's a bit overkill to imply that the SR is SO full of shit from top to bottom, that nothing LaVey says about anything whatsoever in it can be taken as serious. When he's stretching, (or outright raping) the truth behind the topics being discussed, it's not very hard to figure out. And certainly there is much fanciful stuff about Yezidis in that chapter. However, he doesn't often go out of the way to expressly mention modern day "Satanists" when dishing out his bogus history lessons. But he DOES in this particular case. He steps out of his colorful description of Yezidi myth and starts discussing Yezidism in relation to Satanism, and also, more importantly, he takes time to address real-world views on Yezidis:

"The vestiges of Yezidi culture that remain today have, as might be expected, met with not only maudlin "understanding" but, worse yet, attempts to whitewash the religion and deny that it was Devil worship. After eight centuries of harming no one, minding their own business, and maintaining the courage of their convictions-despite wholesale massacres of their men, women, and children at the hands of the self-rightous- the Yezidis have finally been granted a sickeningly charitable form of acknowledgment from theologians. It is now patronizingly asserted that the Yezidis were "actually noble and highly moral people," and therefore could not actually have worshipped the Devil! It is difficult to assess this as anything other than the most blatant form of selective inattention!"

This right here is not something pulled from his ass at all. It is a serious viewpoint that does not originate with LaVey. It was a view shared by more than a few experts no the Yezidis, most importantly, Isya Joseph (who I'm glad you mentioned.) Although I made the disclaimer in the OP that I had no interest in debating the realities of Yezidism, as I think it's besides the point I was trying to make, since you brought it up, I might as well say my bit about it. The thing is, whether anyone likes it or not, the Yezidis do acknowledge that their "Azazel" (which is unquestionably what they consider to be Melek Taus' real name: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5fEPY7PZY2k) is in fact the same BEING known as Azazel in Islam, and the same BEING known as "Satan" in Xianity. They simply have a radically different MORAL conception of Him (and admittedly, vastly divergent myths around Him.) But nonetheless, they acknowledge it IS Him, much to the dismay of researchers who, as LaVey said, recognize they are not "evil," and so cannot accept their Azazel/Shaitan as "evil," and hence, He's not the "Devil," no matter what He is called, or acknowledged to be by the Yezidi themselves. It's the mindset of men like Jeffrey Burton Russell who cannot allow a definition of "the Devil" that does not insist He is pure "evil." Isya Joseph was one of the men who fought for this very idea that their Satan is Satan, but simply a "Good" Satan. If this disqualifies Him as being the "Devil" to some, so be it. But it's not the view shared by all researchers, and it's not the view shared by the Yezidi themselves. I would like to quote Mr. Joseph about this particular hairy area:

“A distinguished modern scholar argues that Ta’us is the god Tammuz. His argument is that the word Ta’us must embody an ancient god, but owing to the obscurity in which the origin of Yezidism and the being of Melek Ta’us are wrapped, it is very difficulty to say which god is meant. And to determine this, he assumes that the term does not come from the Arabic word Ta’us, but was occasioned by some ‘folk-etymology,’ and that we must look, therefore, for some god-name which resembles the word Ta’us. Taking this as a starting point, the critic calls attention to the fact that in Fihrist, p. 322, 1. 27f, which treats of the feasts and gods of the Kharanians, we read that the god Tauz had a feast in middle of Tammuz. He infers from this that the god Tauz is identical with Melek Ta’us. And to the question who this god Tauz is, he answers it is Tammuz. To justify his explanation, the writer contends that the Yezidis speak in Kurdish, and according to Justi’s Kurdische Grammatik, p. 82ff, the change of meem to waw in this language is frequent. However plausible this process may seem to be, philologically it cannot here yield a satisfactory conclusion. For it is based on wrong premises. It is not true that the word Ta’us signifies an ancient deity. It denotes the Devil and nothing else. This is so clear to the Yezidis, or to anyone acquainted with their religion, as to leave no need for further discussion. And to question the religious consciousness of a sect is to engage in pure speculation. Likewise, the method of determining this supposed god by the name of some deity resembling it is objectionable. There are many such names. . . . Still others assert that the sect does not believe in an evil spirit but as a true divinity. This theory is not generally accepted, but seems more probable than the preceding ones. For there is nothing in the sacred book to indicate that Melek Ta’us is an evil spirit or a fallen angel. On the contrary the charge that he was rejected and driven from heaven is repudiated.”

Likewise, William Seabrook was another author who seriously championed this view, even after having visited them. And he was not alone. The same can be said for Henry Layard and others. LaVey was merely reinforcing the views of these men, and these views, are, by the way, far from "discredited" as some scholars do love to insist. The irritating problem of the Yezidis continuing to acknowledge WHO that is will always continue to divide people as to if they are 'Devil Worshippers," and it hinges on whether or not one call allow a "good Devil." If the Devil CAN be good, they are a sort of "Devil Worshipper" as He is consciously acknowledged to be the same INDIVIDUAL, yet not "evil." However, if the Devil NEEDS BE DEFINED in terms or "moral evil," then no, they are not "Devil Worshippers" at all.

But anyway, like I said, the actual metaphysical reality behind who and what Melek Taus really is, or how right or wrong Joseph, Layard, Seabrook, LaVey, Grant, etc, etc, are about their positions is kind of besides the point of my post.

I also wanna be clear that I'm not trying to prove LaVey held the view that Satan was the "personal manifestation of god" at the beginning of the Church, nor am I saying he continued to hold it a day longer than when he wrote that Yezidi chapter. I personally think that LaVey never really was sure of exactly what it was he believed, even when he was buddies with Aquino. BUT, I do think in light of Aquino's story, and the fact that 1972 is also the same year LaVey decided to let Aquino (whom LaVey surely knew was not an Atheist at this point) author the introduction to the hardback Satanic Bible, it's not entirely out of the question or too far-fetched to look at the LaVey passage in the OP as a bit more than tongue-in-cheek tomfoolery. Of course, if one thinks Aquino, Ed Webber, and others from the time are largely nuts and/or full of shit, OR, merely duped by LaVey during that time, the passage in question couldn't mean anything at all, because there's no evidence outside of the passage for LaVey's "theism." I however don't take that view.

And come on, man this line: "Speculating about the author's intimate feelings and beliefs on the basis of his works is kinda pointless. Each writer writes with his audience in mind so does he always have to be sincere?"

That basically boils down to nobody should ever take anything LaVey said seriously at all, and it all means exactly what anyone wants it to, because there's literally no way to tell when LaVey is talking about real-life "Satanism" or not if we can't assume he is even when he talks about "Satanists" and "Satanism" and what it means.


Edited by Obitus (09/25/17 12:44 AM)

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#114487 - 09/25/17 01:54 AM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Obitus]
Dan_Dread Offline
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And?

Why should what lavey believed matter to me?

If satanic praxis is good for anything, it should be leading an individual to their own conclusions on the back of their own experiences.

If you are looking to some guru to tell you what to believe you've surely missed the bus.
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#114489 - 09/25/17 09:12 AM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Dan_Dread]
Obitus Offline
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Registered: 07/20/17
Posts: 45
What LaVey believed or didn't believe only matters to anyone as much as they want it to. I'm not saying those who don't give a shit about what LaVey thought should change their minds.

Individual Satanists certainly should reach their own conclusions based on their own experiences. I'm merely sharing some of my personal views about some old LaVey material cuz I figure someone may very well find such a view interesting or even useful. I'm also fully aware many will NOT appreciate my ramblings. That's as it should be.

And I'm hardly looking to LaVey as a "guru" to tell me what's real and what isn't. If I viewed LaVey in such a way, I'd take his word over everyone else ever involved with him. And I don't. At all. I think LaVey was all sorts of fucked in all sorts of ways. I think the same about the other figures who I admire on some level. Nobody's perfect, and I don't fool myself into thinking anyone is. My personal view on the reality of Satan is based on my own personal experience. Just because I happen to see glimpses of the same Satan I know in the works of LaVey and others doesn't mean my views on Satan depend on the words of LaVey or anyone else.

And to be clear, I didn't make the OP to come in here and tell everyone they're an idiot for not rejecting materialism. Like I started the whole thing off with, I know this is an old, tired argument that those on either side are already mostly where they're going to stay. Nothing wrong with that. It's just that over the years, through all the various forms of the argument I've seen, I've never seen this particular passage given any attention, and to ME, personally, it's always been an interesting chunk of the puzzle, and I merely wanted to add it to the overall conversation.

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#114490 - 09/25/17 09:44 AM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Obitus]
Dark Light 444 Offline
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Registered: 08/02/17
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I appreciate the highlighting, and find it useful in a sense. Thanks for sharing, and I got the gist of the intent behind your sharing it.

This message board is a minefield at times. But, that's one of the things that's great about it too.

I just refuse to get intertwined into too much back and forth with some here, as it just gets in the way of ascertaining the nuggets of value that are imbedded throughout.
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#114492 - 09/25/17 12:25 PM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Obitus]
SIN3 Offline
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 Originally Posted By: Ob
“The Yezidi interpretation of God was in the purest Satanic tradition. . . . If there was any semblance of a personal manifestation of God, it was through Satan, who instructed and guided the Yezidi toward an understanding of the multifaceted principles of Creation, much like the Platonic idea that the Absolute was itself static and transcendental. This concept of ‘God’ is essentially the position taken by the more highly evolved Satanists.”
- LaVey, The Satanic Rituals, 1972


I don't think it's ignored at all. In fact, it's been argued for decades what he meant by that. I'm sure our resident historian will chime in shortly with his circa pre-1972 explanation.

If one gave two shits at all how or why the Yezidi praise a blue -peacock angel, for gaining favor with God at all. One only need to look at their cultural practices to see how un-Satanic it really is. Especially when you can trap a person with superstitious faith-based beliefs, or kill your own kids because they date outside your tribe. I mean really.

How do I interpret? He was reaching for filler. He idealized a culture he didn't know jack shit about. There's much to find disagreement with when it comes to LaVey. I think the main thing here, is to stop regarding LaVey himself as a god to check with, to see if you're doing it right. FFS.
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#114493 - 09/25/17 01:30 PM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Obitus]
Dan_Dread Offline
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If you say so.

It seems to me the whole point of your Opie was to try to legitimize whatever it is you believe(to yourself?) by contrasting it with what you seem to believe(or at least believe that others believe) is an authority figure on the matter.

It seems you have misjudged your audience, pandering denied.
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#114494 - 09/25/17 02:26 PM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Obitus]
Czereda Offline
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Registered: 03/14/11
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So if Melek Taus is a "good Satan", can we call him Satan at all? There are many controversies surrounding the Peacock Angel, even among Yezidis themselves. Some claim that God's order to bow to Adam was a test and only Melek Taus passed it. Others claim that he repented in Hell till his tears quenched its fires. Finally, he became reconciled to God. But was being sent to Hell a punishment? Isya Joseph at one point writes:

When one criticizes such a story as this by saying that God drove Melek Ṭâ’ûs from heaven and sent him to hell because of his pride before God the most high, they do not admit that such is the case. They answer: "It is possible that one of us in his anger should drive out his child from his house and let him wait until the next day before bringing him back? Of course not. Similar is the relation of the great God to Melek Ṭâ’ûs. Verily he loves him exceedingly. You do not understand the books which you read The Gospel says, 'No one ascended up to heaven but he who came down from heaven.' No one came down from heaven but Melek Ṭâ’ûs and Christ. From this we know that the great God has been reconciled to Melek Ṭâ’ûs, who went up to heaven, just as God came down from heaven and went up again."

The descent of god into the underworld and the subsequent ascension into Heaven can be found in various myths. People interpret it in their own silly and superficial ways and the complex nature of divinity is too much for their polarized view of the world. How can god be good and evil at the same time?

I wouldn't be so sure about Melek Taus being identical with Azazel. It is also claimed that an alternate name for Melek Taus is not Azazel but Aziz, which means something precious.

http://www.yeziditruth.org/more-about-the-peacock-angel

Anyway, Yezidi religion is largely a mystery. There is lots of speculation about it as it's mainly based on oral tradition.

As a side note, it's an interesting discussion thread. Not much has been posted here about Yezidis.


Edited by Czereda (09/25/17 02:33 PM)
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#114495 - 09/25/17 07:29 PM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Obitus]
The Zebu Offline
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Portraying Yezidism as a sort of "Ur-Satanism" is loaded with problems, even if correlated as liberally as possible. Among them:

1. Those who capitalize on such connections (LaVey foremost, but also many Theistic Satanists, Typhonians, and post-Gardnerian witches who followed suit) are primarily informed by limited and outdated sources such as Isya Joseph. Usually starting off from of the misleading “Devil Worship” tagline, their sketches of Yezidism are over-fixated on the figure of Tawuse Melek--particularly his similarities to the Western Satan/Lucifer. Conspicuously absent is information about the roles played by other characters such as Ezi, Sharfadin, Sheikh Adi, Ali, Jesus, other angels and Yezidi saints/holy men who play important roles in oral and written traditions.

2. Traditional Yezidi society is governed by a set of conservative tribal ethics and taboos that more resembles the “old-time religions” of Islam, Judaism, and Christianity than the "do what thou wilt" moral liberalism espoused by nearly all self-styled Satanists.

3. The name "Satan" itself is considered to be a slander against Tawuse Melek. As one lay oral account claims, this was the name that Adam shouted out in anger to Melek Taus as he was exiled from Paradise--thereafter the name became cursed and taboo. Thus it would seem strange that those Satanists who would claim a common spiritual heritage from the Yezidi should continue to use a blasphemous name for their object of veneration.

So even though Yezidis may accept that the “Devil” of the book-religions is a (distorted) portrayal of their chief angel, continuing to place too much weight on these similarities (even if they may have some “esoteric” merit) results in an inaccurate portrait of a religious tradition already plagued by prior generations of inaccurate portraits.

I think here we can reasonably draw some analogies with Afro-Caribbean religions. Though the Yoruba orisha Eshu-Eleggua and West African loa Legba are often syncretized with and share attributes with Satan/Lucifer and play preeminent roles in their respective religions, calling either Santeria or Vodoun a form of “Satanism” or “Devil-Worship” would be greatly inaccurate and offensive to the overwhelming majority (if not all) of practitioners. Moreover it obfuscates the fact that a great many of them also identify as Christians and Catholics. As for the Yezidis, although they are not Muslims, there is interesting evidence that suggests a lot more cross-fertilization with Quranic and Judeo-Christian themes than might be expected. (see "Eschatology" link at the bottom).

 Quote:
“The Yezidi interpretation of God was in the purest Satanic tradition. . . . If there was any semblance of a personal manifestation of God, it was through Satan, who instructed and guided the Yezidi toward an understanding of the multifaceted principles of Creation, much like the Platonic idea that the Absolute was itself static and transcendental. This concept of ‘God’ is essentially the position taken by the more highly evolved Satanists.”


There is something of a kernel of truth in here. Yazdanism (a reconstructed category referring to Kurdish cults of angel-worship, of which Yezidism would be a modern survival) may arguably share some ancestry and influence from the Neoplatonism of late antiquity--effectively a philosophy-infused form of demiurge-worship that was readily manifested as an imperial (Roman) superstructure upon the local cults of Near-Eastern deities while claiming intellectual heritage from Plato. This religious perspective generally posited an ultimate or transcendent form of divinity (Monad/One or Nous/Mind) which emanated a successive series of intermediary gods/angels responsible for maintaining the cosmic activities of creation and guiding human souls towards the summit of divinity. The role of the demiurge(s) could be taken by various figures such as Helios, Jupiter, Baal Hammon, Ra, Horus, and so on. Here it does not seem to be a great stretch of the imagination to see Tawuse Melek in a similar light. And even Satan was given demiurgic attributes in both heretical and orthodox strains of Christianity, as the Kosmokrator and God Of This World.

But when all is said and done, LaVeyan Satanism is definitely not Neoplatonism. And neither of these are Yezidism.

Now I personally suspect that LaVey had more “spiritual” impulses than his current standard-bearers give him credit for (and you do provide some good supporting evidence that hints at this), but ultimately they were not strong enough to liberate his religion from the modernist-friendly secularism that nourished it in the first place. Was this a bad thing? If you are an Atheist who thinks it safer to jettison those elements which smack of superstition, certainly not.

Even if one considers a spiritual interpretation, the very idea of “Satanism” is such a contested point of fracture--how do you make a religion out of being anti-religious? How do you affirmatively define a positive philosophy through the language of adversarial reaction? Can you really take an anti-god and worship him like a god? And if you do decide to decide to venerate “The Prince of the Earth” and “Angel of Light” as your lord and savior, why continue to borrow the attributes of a near-dualist Christianity that denies and denigrates him? Or perhaps, if Satan does assume personal and cosmic agency, does this not make him at least partially responsible for the worldly evil that often inspires anti-theists to rebel against the God of the Bible?

Long story short, it’s complicated. I'll let other people duke that one out for now.

 Originally Posted By: Czereda

I wouldn't be so sure about Melek Taus being identical with Azazel. It is also claimed that an alternate name for Melek Taus is not Azazel but Aziz, which means something precious.


For the complications revealed by my mind-vomit posted above, I am also hesitant to assert hard one-to-one “identities” between mythological figures with their own idiosyncratic origins and attributes.

But for what it’s worth, “Azazel” / “Azazil” can be interpreted as “Strong one of God”, or “God has been strong”, so it is certainly more of a positive name than “Shaytan” (enemy) or “Iblis” (despair). Also, certain Islamic texts such as “The Mother of Books” have stories that re-affirm the angelic nature of Azazil (as opposed to the orthodox re-interpretation of his being a Jinn), and describe how he was given divine creative powers by God and that the world was partially manifested through his essence. (Although here Azazil is never redeemed, unlike in some Sufic works with which these texts dovetail).

Still the question remains, how much of this reflects the internal terminology of the Yezidis themselves (as opposed to how it is presented for outsiders), and what is the sources’ level of religious engagement? (Are they a layperson? A person trained in singing hymns of their extensive oral tradition? An authorized cleric with access to their written works?), once again reflecting that they may have variant stories and unique interpretations depending on which part of society they are from. If one thing may be said with some certainty about the Yezidis, it is that their tradition is not a rigidly-catechized faith like most denominations of Christianity.

Some further reading that others may find interesting:

God and Sheikh Adi are Perfect - Book (Google Books preview)

Eschatology of Yezidism - Thesis (full text)

The Serpent Symbolism in the Yezidi Religious Tradition and the Snake in Yerevan - (Paper)


Edited by The Zebu (09/25/17 07:38 PM)
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#114496 - 09/25/17 10:31 PM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: The Zebu]
Obitus Offline
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Registered: 07/20/17
Posts: 45
As I've tried to point out earlier, I think the Yezidi question itself, while fascinating, is ultimately besides the point of what I made the OP about. As far as trying to get a peek at how LaVey was thinking, his ideas (right or wrong) about the Yezidis is what matters.

And for the record, I don't think Yezidism itself, as a whole, could be fairly described as a "Satanism" except in the most broad, basic, and generic definition of "the conscious worship of something acknowledged to be the Devil." I agree that it's highly misleading and confusing to say Yezidism is "Satanism" in light of Satanism's history as a preeminently Western concept, both before its codification as an organized religion in the 60s and after, and all that goes along with that. Not to mention that the Yezidis themselves won't say the word "Satan." But I do still assert it is indeed a form of "Devil Worship" in general, regardless of the attributes of that Devil.

And Yezidism is a HIGHLY decentralized religion. This is the natural result of being, well, straight up illiterate and ignorant as shit for centuries. You can read interviews with Yezidis, in person, from the 1800s all the way through till now, and it becomes apparent that the reason so many authors argued as to whether or not Melek Taus was fallen, was not fallen, was reinstated, was not yet, etc etc, is because bluntly, different Yezidis seriously related all of these different versions of it. It's a huge shitshow for anyone expecting to dissect and label Yezidism into a coherent narrative. It's never going to happen.

But once again, in making the OP, I was only interested in LaVey's view and mindset, not the intricacies of Yezidism itself, however fun it may be to dig through the mess. And even if LaVey was absolutely 100% WRONG about Yezidis, that's not the point of the OP.

But, since people are enjoying digging into it, this is an interesting bit not about Yezidis, but about another closely related group of people from the same area who are often ignored, the Ahl-e Haqq. And amazingly, believe it or not, some of them do indeed refer to themselves as "Shaitan Parasts," or "Satan Worshippers," and also believe he's the same Melek Taus of the Yezidis:



(This is taken from Fritillaria Kurdica, Bulletin of Kurdish Studies, N. 3,4. Here's a link to a pdf download: https://www.academia.edu/6858753/Venerat...r%C3%A2n_region )

And as far as how "Adversarial" Melek Taus is, once again, I'm not trying to make a case for Yezidism being a full-blown "Satanism" in any recognizable form that resembles our "Satanism." I'm merely saying it's the Devil in some capacity, whether he's like YOUR Devil or MY Devil or not at all. And besides, I personally only view "Satan" as the "Adversary" of the people who originally decided he was our adversary: Jews, Xians, and Muslims (and perhaps by extension, slave morality systems that derive from them). I'm not the type to insist that Satan need be the "adversary" of whatever is the status quo at the moment. I certainly don't consider him the "adversary" of all religion in general. Not knocking those who do, but just trying to clarify where I'm coming from.

As to whether or not the Yezidis consider Melek Taus to be Azazel, that is exactly what they say themselves. It's not from some outside source. I put a short video clip of a Yezidi at Lalish unambiguously asserting that "Azazel" is indeed the name of their Angel, and Melek Taus is a title for Azazel. That may not mean something to some people for some reason, but I don't know what to tell ya if a Yezidi saying it on camera isn't good enough. I suppose it's still up for debate as to WHY they call him that, but there's no denying that they do.

I have been meaning to get a copy of "God and Sheikh Adi are Perfect" since it came out. But ain't felt like spending 80 bucks for it. And the "Serpent Symbolism" paper is a highly interesting one, as it's the only place I've ever seen that affirms that yes, some Yezidis do place curses on people. It's not just a Muslim myth.

About the Neoplatonism though, some of ya'll may or may not be interested in a couple of papers discussing that exact area in regards to Yezidism: "Tawus Protogonos: Parallels Between the Yezidi Theology and Some Ancient Greek Cosmogonies" and "Eros and the Pearl: Love as the Cosmogonic Factor in the Yezidi and Some Ancient Cosmogonies," both by Artur Rodziewiz. Neat stuff in there.


Edited by Obitus (09/25/17 11:29 PM)

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#114498 - 09/26/17 01:36 AM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Obitus]
Dimitri Offline
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Registered: 07/13/08
Posts: 3300
The difference between Satanic and Satan.

As for manifestion..
People always have had this inane need to personify/humanize objects or immaterial concepts. Makes it easier for understanding.

As such I wouldn't say that Satanists flirting with Atheism have a more advanced mind. Most of the time they are as stupid as the rest. Quoting Dawkins and Hitchins is being as stupid as quoting a Bible. Can't grow brains or claim higher intelligence merely by association. If there's no understanding there's no thinking.

Personifying things does not make religious. Even the most hardcore Atheist still talks to his dog/cat. Even they will swear when alone in a room when stubbing their toe against furniture.
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#114505 - 09/26/17 05:32 PM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Obitus]
The Zebu Offline
senior member


Registered: 08/08/08
Posts: 1647
Loc: Orlando, FL
 Quote:
Not to mention that the Yezidis themselves won't say the word "Satan." But I do still assert it is indeed a form of "Devil Worship" in general, regardless of the attributes of that Devil.


Although I am not an academic myself, in such cases I personally prefer labels that would be palatable to an anthropologist and cause as little confusion as possible. "Devil worship" is such a loaded term--and in general, referring to groups by highly-charged exonyms (derived from a radically divergent theology, no less) is misleading and bad rhetorical form. And more tangentially, using "_____-worship" as descriptor for a complicated religious worldview just sounds so reductive and Edwardian.

Nevertheless, the titles you posted were very interesting and have given me a deal of relevant information to think about. Thank you for providing them.

 Quote:
But once again, in making the OP, I was only interested in LaVey's view and mindset, not the intricacies of Yezidism itself, however fun it may be to dig through the mess. And even if LaVey was absolutely 100% WRONG about Yezidis, that's not the point of the OP.


LaVey was wrong about a lot of things. Of course, mythology was an accessory to his philosophy, not the foundation.

That LaVey catered to mystical elements in the early days of the CoS is no secret. But how much of a role these played in the Satanism of his own heart-of-hearts is anyone's guess, and that horse has been beat to death. Maybe I'm just jaded from years of tossing around the same subject.

Still, the concept of "Satan as Socratic daimonion" that he seemed to be aiming at is an interesting one.


Edited by The Zebu (09/26/17 05:40 PM)
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#117210 - 10/18/18 04:48 PM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: The Zebu]
Alexander85 Offline
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Registered: 10/18/18
Posts: 6
The fully evolved Satanist is the individual who fully understands the true nature of existence and has the intelligence and drive to implement the law of rational self interest upon this earth. They are the individual who realizes that there is no higher purpose than pursuing pleasure, that understanding such is the definition of total rationality in humans, that knows how to spread their mindset to the world, and how to manifest their ultimate will upon the Earth.
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#117211 - 10/18/18 05:32 PM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Alexander85]
samowens84 Offline
member


Registered: 09/29/16
Posts: 429
I view Satan as a servant. You're not meant to trust him, he's there to challenge you to evolve. I see him personally as a an adjunct to Lilith. She demands that a person find their ambition and worth apart from any relationship, and that one be true to themselves in their divine feminine. Evolution keeps the earth alive. Satan is only a reliable guide if one is working towards balance within yourself, and that your earth balance is respected. Satan can only stand a humans presence for only so long before his disgust causes him to bring out the knife. So when he or she arrives get what you need and split and don't linger. And don't worry, he is always with you either way.

In this regard from my perspective Lavey had it right. Satan demands study, not worship. He/she rewards the wise and hardworking with self-sustaining power consistent with your self-respect, as long as one recognizes the female power behind him, he can't harm you. Lilith in my experience is the source for my self-love and self-worth, and Satan represents the part of me that likes to fight and challenge the way things are. There are those doctrines in some writings by Lavey that Satan represents the way things are rather then how one wants him to be, which isn't true. One should adopt whatever strategy that respects your progress, and if that at times means being strategically naive and living in your imagination, then the Satanic thing to do is to ignore Lavey and respect yourself.


Edited by samowens84 (10/18/18 05:36 PM)

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#117214 - 10/18/18 10:41 PM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: samowens84]
Alexander85 Offline
stranger


Registered: 10/18/18
Posts: 6
I agree with all you say for the most part. Satan will only bring out the knife if you annoy him with irrational behavior enough though. If you are a valid reflection of him, he will not harm you, only help make you better to be a better representation of him.
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#117215 - 10/18/18 10:42 PM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Alexander85]
Alexander85 Offline
stranger


Registered: 10/18/18
Posts: 6
He doesn't require worship. He only wants to see himself reflected in you. There is nothing more beautiful than that to him.
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#117216 - 10/18/18 10:43 PM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Alexander85]
Alexander85 Offline
stranger


Registered: 10/18/18
Posts: 6
Believe it or not, Satan loves you. Lol.
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#117220 - 10/19/18 03:09 AM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Alexander85]
Dimitri Offline
stalker


Registered: 07/13/08
Posts: 3300
I'll throw in my mega-stone and hope I'll mega-evolve in the next battle. Oh wait.. this isn't pokemon.

It is nice clickbait you got there. You use the term "rationality" a lot. It is not always needed to indulge into the persuation of pleasure nor is it a law to apply for self interest.



Edited by Dimitri (10/19/18 03:10 AM)
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#117238 - 10/20/18 11:04 PM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: Dimitri]
XiaoGui17 Offline
veteran member


Registered: 10/21/09
Posts: 1219
Loc: Austin, TX
 Originally Posted By: Dan_Dread
And?

Why should what lavey believed matter to me?

This thread was over in 2017, before derptato resurrected it and triple-posted.
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#117239 - 10/21/18 08:26 AM Re: "More highly evolved Satanists," LaVey, & Yezidis [Re: XiaoGui17]
Dimitri Offline
stalker


Registered: 07/13/08
Posts: 3300
So what?
You've been around these parts since 2009.

Unless your thoughts and ideas did not evolve, discussions remain open.
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