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Satan as a pagan symbol

Satan as a pagan symbol

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Published by Sin Jones
A rather lengthy essay on the use of Satan as a pagan symbol.

This is the second edition, with typos corrected.
A rather lengthy essay on the use of Satan as a pagan symbol.

This is the second edition, with typos corrected.

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Published by: Sin Jones on Dec 20, 2010
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Satan Origins Symbols
This essay will explore the pagan symbolism of Satan. It directly addresses the controversy of why someSatanists identify themselves as pagan. It will trace the origins of Satan back, to the beginning, it may attimes address biblical context, but my focus is dedicated to pagan origins and attributes of Satan. There aremany reference books which address the birth of Satan. Many of those references will be found throughoutthis paper.This essay will also explore the differences between Satan, devil and demon. These labels are ofteninterchangeable when discussion the topic of Satanism. There are many books and articles which addressthe differences between all the types of Satanism, and what is considered the
True
and
 Authentic
Satanism.This paper will not fall into endless abyss of that
 pretentious
debate. There are many resource books whichaddress the
 How To
or education
 For Dummies
(series reference), this paper is not an instruction manualfor would-be Satanists.Satanism, is vast. It is no longer the Satanism from the late 1960's, and has evolved into a variety of  philosophical paradigms, and religions. Satanism is,
but is not 
limited to: Humanism, Atheism, Hedonism,Libertine Philosophy, Objectivism, Human Psychology, Sociology, Luciferianism, Setianism, Asetianism,Theism, Religious, Spiritual, Non-Spiritual, Humanistic, Materialistic, Carnal, Left-handed, Right-handed,and Middle-pillar. In order to truly understand what each Satanists believes and practices, you shouldengage them in dialogue. It can not be assumed that because a person self-labels as a Satanist, they areeither an Atheist or a Devil-worshiper. Things are not so black and white, but often many shades of gray but most often neutral. It would take a small volume library to cover the topic of Satanism properly. I will provide some references at the conclusion of this essay for further research. They are not the be-all, end-allresources for all things Satanism. Nor, will any one resource define Satanism. I suggest that material from
 
Satan Origins Symbols
any/all Satanic writers be examined before drawing your conclusions about what is and isn't Satanic. Itwould also serve you to understand that organizations which are dedicated to Satanic philosophy are notSatanisms unto themselves. They are simply organizations in place to serve the agenda as put forth by thatorganization, often published in a mission statement.Satan serves as an allegory, metaphor, and a literal being to Satanists. To determine which Satanists believes what, you have to ask them. I am one Satanist, I do not speak for the whole of Satanism but havestudied nearly all the Satanic philosophies out there (new ones pop up all the time) to get a full grasp of what it means to be Satanic outside of my own perspective. I find the topic of Satanism invigorating, andhave my own opinions about what it means to be Satanic. This however does not cloud my judgementwhen tracing Satan back in time, to the beginning.Satanism does not always require worship, but some Satanic philosophies/religions have a strong focus onthe worship of external beings. Whether those beings are deity or something else is completely reliantupon the Satanist's personal beliefs or adherence to an established religion/philosophy. Satanism has astrong focus on study and intellectualism, as many Satanic schools of thought believe in becoming theSuper-man, and achieving hyper-intelligence. As such, Elitism is often part of their Satanic paradigm.This does not mean that all Satanists study, nor are Elitists.Satanists, are human beings - subject to all the same fallacies as other human beings. They are alsoemotional and spiritual beings. How the emotional/spiritual is conceptualized is as individual as the person.Satanism often contains dogma, for those that need it but it often rejects it. There is no universal set of laws, rules, or ethics to follow but if a Satanist feels the need for some structure, many Satanic philosophiesoffer it for consumption and adherence if desired.Satanism is often associated with darkness, all things carnal and sometimes 'evil'. While Satanists enjoy adark aesthetic, not all Satanists seek this environment. There is no cookie-cutter for a Satanist, thoughmany fit established molds based on cultural influences and sometimes the longing for a sense of 'belonging'. This does not mean that all Satanists are social, or can be easily categorized based onestablished paradigms. Many are complete enigmas. Satanists will often be found in the Art, Goth,Vampire, Diabolist, Black Metal, Death Metal, or Heavy Metal communities. This does not mean that allSatanists are Artists, Goth, Vampires, Diabolists or Metal heads. Satanists are every day people. You maynot be able to identify them by their mode of dress nor do they wear black all the time, rock fedoras, or listen to specific music. The desired aesthetic is as individual as the Satanists.Satanism, is represented by many symbols which will be discussed here. It is often consideredsynonymous or kin to the Egyptian god Set, Egyptian Aset, Lucifer, Devil, Daemon, Daimon, Demon andhistorically pagan gods. As part of a Satanist's desired aesthetic, a specific cultural reference may appeal toeach of them. This will lead the researcher around the world, culture to culture chasing down the devil.Satanism, can be studied by using a variety of sources. There is not a single book that can do it justice.Since Satanism is not a unified or universal philosophy/religion, many sources can be resources for Satanicthought. Satanism, is not limited to Satanic writing. It draws from many subjects such as Anthropology,Archaeology, History, Language/Music, Science, Sociology, Psychology, Literature, and Occultism. Thisis just a handful; you could literally study this subject for the whole of your life if you are passionateenough about it.If you have questions regarding this essay, feel free to contact me. I am not infallible, and my ideas areever-evolving especially with the introduction of new information, and examination of outside perspectives. I enjoy discussing the topic with knowledgeable individuals. Which leads me to modes of communication. Satanists often adhere to
 Lex Talionis
, otherwise known as the
Silver Rule
, and do notappreciate pointed statements which aim to insult or degrade their person. If you do this, be prepared for  back-lash. Satanists are often aggressive in personality vs. passive. Satanism has a strong focus on the beast within, and if you tease the dog you are libel to be bitten. For everything else, there's duct-tape.
 
Satan Origins Symbols
From this point on, I will convey my personal opinions and address generalized viewpoints. I will alsoshare historical references for your examination. My position on this topic is by no means an absolute. Itis intended to present information in an organized fashion for further research. It is my hope that it willfoster critical thinking, self-examination and pave the way for the development of additional papers whichcover the topic of Satanism in the 21st century, from both a pagan and secular perspective.
What the hell is a pagan?
Before I can address Satan as a pagan symbol, I must address the term pagan. I have written in the pastabout the use and mis-use of this term, in the form of diatribes. This is a more serious approach to the termand its meaning.Latin is an Italic dialect, which was spoken in the Italic peninsula, along with Greek, Celtic and Etruscanlanguage. Eventually all of these languages were taken over by imperial Rome, but not before they lefttheir mark on the Latin language. Before the collapse of the Roman Empire, Latin became standard in places like Spain, France, Romania, and other surrounding areas. Latin had become absorbed into what wenow refer to as Italian, Spanish, French, Romanian and other romance languages.Language study has relied heavily on existing antiquarian manuscripts and artifacts. There are surviving pre-Abrahamic (religions of Abraham) religious texts referred to as pagan rites. During your own quest for truth, you will find the following references referred to (and often):
 History of LivyVirgil's Aeneid Ovid's Metamorphosis
(Classical era)There is also a heavy reliance upon Greek myths. The problem is,that when examining Greek mythology, outside of the Roman namesfor gods, there is very little historical reference to Roman culture. Itis heavily Greek. This often confuses scholars into believing thatthe two are identical.An additional source is the
Golden Bough
. However, it is riddledwith inaccurate theories and focuses too much on irrelevant detail -if one were looking for something truly Roman. Context iseverything. Especially when examining language. To further complicate matters, there is a heavy Etruscaninfluence which by the study of Etruscan culture, you can see as far back as 8th century BCE. TheEtruscans influenced the early Greeks and vice versa, plus the Etruscan language is not considered Indo-European. So now you have Italic languages (which are pretty muddy as it is) being brought into the foldof what is considered Latin today. If you want to truly understand the evolution of the term pagan, Istrongly recommend that you delve into language study.For the sake of keeping this paper as condensed as I possibly can, I am only going to focus on
 paganus
todeliver my point of view. There are many forms and the etymology study could be an entire chapter initself. In antiquity, the term was used to address people living in rural areas, outside of cities. In theRoman Empire, any person not living in the more civilized cities (vs. rural villages) were referred to as
 paganus
(post-Classical Latin). This context can be compared to calling a person living in the country inthe 21st century, a hick. It had negative connotations. Consider the terms 'hick' or 'hillbilly', these termsare meant to communicate that the person is uncivilized, un-socialized, rustic, uneducated, and a lower-class citizen. The same applies to the term pagan. This term was used in such a fashion, that the countryfolk became accustomed to being called pagans. Just like the country folk in the 21st century areaccustomed to the social stereotyping used in the same manner. People have a resiliency and can be thick-

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