REMINDER: I do not speak for The Church of Satan. I'm just loud.
I Am Unique
One thing that I’ve noticed is that there are a lot of, well, similarities between people of faith. We all know that stereotypical Christian family that has 2.5 kids and a dog. Yes, the people you are picturing are blond.
People tend to think that applies to Satanists as well and in some ways they’re right. We hold the same core values of Satanism since we are, well, Satanists, but that’s pretty much where the similarities end. We are all from different walks of life. There are Republican Satanists and Democratic Satanists and Satanists in between and beyond.
One of the ways I like to showcase this is through the Infernal Interviews and I did cover this topic with our latest victim in…
I sent some questions to Citizen of the Infernal Empire Chris!
1) What is your relationship to the Church of Satan?
I am a Registered, card-carrying member of the organization. I am not an Active Member, thus I’m considered a Citizen of the Infernal Empire. This is not to say that the organization is not aware of my activities or progress as I try to make sure that I send them an email about once a year to let them know what important things are going on in my life.
I was honored to be invited to the home of our High Priest and High Priestess the day after the 50th Anniversary celebration. Two of the videos I shot during the Devils Reign II art show (curated by Magus Gilmore) have been featured on the Church of Satan’s YouTube channel, and I was surprised to wake up one afternoon and see one of my photographs of Magus Gilmore from that same event was used for his birthday announcement in 2017. So, I guess I’m doing okay by their standards.
2) When did you finally decide to apply?
After discovering what Satanism was through reading Anton LaVey’s Satanic Bible in 1990, I waited until after I had finished my enlistment with the United States Navy in 1993 to start studying the religion deeply. It was in 1994 that I re-read the Satanic Bible, and the rest of Magus LaVey’s work that I could find. Now, you have to remember, back then the Internet was not as ubiquitous as it is today. If you wanted this information, you had to go out in the world and look for it, and esoterica wasn’t particularly easy to find. One day while at Tower Records in Tustin, California, I just happened to discover a copy of “The Black Flame” magazine, which was the International Forum for the Church of Satan. The magazine was produced and printed by Hell’s Kitchen Productions, run by (then) Magister Peter H. Gilmore and Magistra Peggy Nadramia. In the magazine was a half page advertisement for the Church of Satan complete with the address for information. Send off your S.A.S.E. (self-addressed, stamped envelope, for our younger readers), and they would mail you registration materials.
The one hundred dollar membership fee back then was a bit steep for me as this was during a time when I wasn’t in the best financial situation. I still wanted to join, so I kept the membership packet and saved up the fee over time. By the time I was ready to apply, I had studied the organization and knew what their mission was. What really appealed to me was I saw the mission had not changed after Anton LaVey died. I wanted to show my support for the organization, so I got the rest of the money together and mailed in my application in 1998.
3) What would you like Non-Satanists to know about Satanists?
This religion does not foster homogeneity. Don’t expect all Satanists to think the same way. Satanism is not a cause. The cause in Satanism is the individual person, and what works for one may not work for another. About the only thing all Satanists WILL have in common is the shared religious philosophy codified by Anton Szandor LaVey, and that’s it. Even then, each Satanist will apply the religion and their personal perception of it differently to their own lives.
4) Would you rather be a horse or a cat? The Wizard gives you 3 seconds to decide.
That’s easy: a cat. Yes, it’s a shorter life span, but nobody is expecting me to do any hard work or carry them on my back, and I get to sleep all day.
5) Describe your ideal home.
I’m kind of partial to Bag End, the underground home of Bilbo Baggins in Tolkien’s work. Being under ground, it would help keep the energy bills down during the summer. As long as my wife and cats are there, I’m good.
6) How do you celebrate your birthday?
That depends on my mood, so it varies. If there’s a band in town I’m fond of, I may go to the show. I may see a movie. I’m fortunate to live within ten miles of that home of Total Environments, Disneyland. My wife and I are Annual Passholders, so that is always an option.
7) Describe a powerful Lesser Magic moment.
A Lesser Magic moment I experienced, or one I performed? If it’s one that I experienced, then it would be my wife’s wedding proposal to me. She’s quite the Satanic Witch. As for one I performed, I could say the groundwork I laid for my promotion to Public Safety Dispatch Supervisor with the law enforcement agency I work for, but those details are confidential. (Wink)
8) How do you describe Ritual Magic, or Greater Magic, when people are genuinely curious?
I tell them it’s a fun way of clearing my own brain so I can get on with my life and do what I need or want to do. I also add that I feel that doing so too often robs the ritual of its special properties, so I typically reserve Greater Magic exclusively for those things I can’t get over by any other means. For the rest of the day-to-day, I have other ritualistic activities, such as Itosu-ryu Karate, and weight training.
9) Where do you think my left sock keeps going?
It’s goes to the pile that also includes my missing metric adjustable wrenches and football bats.
10) Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
If my sanity and health hold up, and with a bit of studying, I hope to promote to the second rank of Supervisor at work. With some more work, I should also be at the level of Shodan (third degree black belt) in my Karate school and maybe teaching my own students.
Have a great rest of your weekend, guys! I’m going to be taking it easy and looking for my left socks.
I will be hanging out on the internet with Reverend Campbell on June 8th, so watch out for that!