By Vexen Crabtree 2002
Misanthrope: One who hates humankind.
Weak Misanthrope: One who finds people too boring to muster up enough consistent hate to be a full blown misanthrope.
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“Being filled with disgust at the spectacle of the milling hordes that cover our lovely globe and soil it with their presence, we try to minimize our contact with those gullible denizens whom we call 'the herd.' [...] Most people go about their middling ways and thus rate only indifference, while we are engaged with those who truly matter to us; the worthy and the accomplished. Misanthropy is thus the basis for a Satanic lifestyle. Since we generally feel that just about everything on this planet is ruined by an over-abundance of people, we who study the beast called Man call ourselves, with a nod and a wink, 'misanthropologists.' I salute a colleague, Carl Abrahamsson, who travels the world to explore various cultures, as he first used that term to describe his activities.”
“There are problems in today's world that cannot be solved by the level of thinking that created them.”
Short-sighted with our planet, dominated by natural instincts that are no longer productive, neophobic, prone to irrationalism and cognitive errors in thinking and statistics, led astray by instinctive love of salty and fatty foods: We are also massively overpopulated. Far too many individuals, in a species that could do with doing a little more self-reflection, and a little less procreation. Our species needs a massive dose of genetic engineering to steer us out of the wayward paths blind evolution has taken us down.
“Now of the Chief Good (i.e. of Happiness) men seem to form their notions from the different modes of life, as we might naturally expect: the many and most low conceive it to be pleasure, and hence they are content with the life of sensual enjoyment. For there are three lines of life which stand out prominently to view: that just mentioned, and the life in society, and, thirdly, the life of contemplation. Now the many are plainly quite slavish, choosing a life like that of brute animals.”
We might always to find Satanists living the higher life of contemplation and noble civility, combined with an acceptance of our animal sides. But in reality, all of us humans succumb to pointless base desires that distract us from our more important goals. We are always, all too human. Such a shame that the elite also fall foul to our stupid sides from time to time, but, imagine how embarrassingly terrible and shallow is the life of the rest of the unthinking masses! If only they knew what directionless lives many of them lead! They ought to wise up and choose: are they to pick one practical route, and simply submit themselves to those who lead forward-thinking lives and therefore find themselves serving a purpose, or, are they to delve into the philosophy books, and self-motivate until they fashion themselves into a gem? Needless to say, most of the swarm manage to pick neither of those credible paths. They steer their lives like through a drunken dream, sometimes trying out some obnoxious rebellion, mostly failing to attain proper standards of behaviour and thought, and swaying from one short-term plan to another. Such is the unfortunate state of the masses - market economies just manage to keep them contributing but many fall through that net, and worse of all, they simply don't know what state they are in!
“Experience is that marvellous thing that enables you recognise a mistake when you make it again.”
F. P. Jones
“Human beings, who are almost unique in having the ability to learn from the experience of others, are also remarkable for their apparent disinclination to do so.”
All people are shit - including my friends, my parents, myself. Blinded to the truth, messed up in the head, people trudge day by day towards their deaths, for the most part never being pleased, despite the signs, with what they were. Chronically ego-deprived, we resist and inhibit ourselves, constantly externalizing this inner inability to act in the form of "anti-establishment" sentiment.
People love each other. For the thrill, for the emotion, for themselves, they love *you*. Long term relationships, psychologically formed with the aid of phenylethylamine and oxytocin. You are dishonest, whiney, and just as shit to them as they are to you. Enjoy. Just be honest! It is funny how the best advice seems to run counter to human instinct.
People die. One day you will die. Do you really want to have spent your life talking about how bad it's been?
Or do you want to party?
Forget your troubles.
Admit you'll never be perfect.
And have fun. Your ego is your friend!
“Verily, I have done this thing and that for sufferers, but ever meseemed I did a better thing when I learned how to rejoice. Since ever man was he hath too little rejoiced. This only, my brethren, is our original sin! And when we learn better to rejoice we best forget how to hurt others and to contrive pain.”
"All people are shit", including you, and me. So don't let any delusions of altruism trouble your little mind, for the most altruistic person in the whole world is still only being selfish and indulging in that which makes them happy. If I devote my life to making myself happy I am selfish. But if I find happiness in making others happy, then I am kind, generous, "good"? But mistake me not for altruistic.
“In the depths of my heart, I can't help being convinced that my fellow men, with a few exceptions, are worthless.”
All people have something. Perhaps.
"All people are shit" is a mechanism I employ for multiple purposes:
Because the statement is true, and the truth solves problems.
The phrase improves your disposition and makes you happier.
If not stupid, then mind-dumbingly boring. I don't hate everyone. I just find most people boring. Uninteresting. Predictable. I don't know why, I'm not a psychologist, but I tend to spend most conversations waiting for the other person to finish his text-book database of opening conversations.
“Being bored is a pastime of the boring.”
Constantly exaggerating their personal troubles in the name of social interaction. Sympathy, my friends, is sometimes appropriate. But most the time it isn't. It may appear to be because of what we see on TV and in our society, but believe me it's counterproductive.
I know you have problems. I know there are people you don't like. I know there are really bad things that have happened to you recently and that you're life has been hard, emotional and damaging. Everyone says all those things. I'm sure you really have though. If you start telling me about them in the typical fashion of a psychic vampire you are going to find that people really don't care, even as much as you suspect they don't.
“I'm So tired of endless hard luck stories.
I'm beginning to not give a damn.
I wish I could reach right up to the untouchables.”
Soft Cell (Marc Almond) - Frustration
Sympathy makes it easy for people to remain as they are: Pathetic. People, when they are seeking attention through sympathy, are being pathetic. Everyone does it (including me, of course) from time to time. Some more than others.
Those whose principal mode of communication is through attracting sympathy are psychic vampires, who would have you solve their problems and make you feel responsible for them simple for having talked to them. Avoid those who want sympathy until they get better.
Do not allow a person to make a habit of seeking sympathy from you. If they do not do it to you, they may do it to someone else. Or they might just feel the sharp edge of reality and give up seeking sympathy, when all they need is confidence.
Giving sympathy too much to a person just makes yourself a victim for their increased habit of seeking sympathy from you. Do not reward them by giving them more. It does them no good.
All people are shit. All people are self centered, egotistical, fucked-up, messed-up, violent, pseudo-violent, stupid, mundane, boring, crap, shit, messy, untidy, illogical, bigoted, sexually repressed, sexually stressed, motor-philes who smell.
Conversation with most people is dire. Sometimes funny, rarely useful. Most the people I talk to I am waiting for them to be silent.
Why is it that the stupidest people know it the loudest?
Once you have acquired doubt to the extent that your conversation becomes broken and interesting, you are on the left hand path: The shortcut to brains industrial estates. Can you sit on a wall, in a town where you're a stranger, and look and at all the people milling around. Are you a peoplewatcher? Do you find them interesting to watch, and completely boring to interact with?
Fashion is not about copy-catting the most "up-to-date" look you observe. Fashion is an expression of yourself, not of your bank balance. If you want to show off your cash, write "loser" on your head and watch the opportunists let you spend it on their marketed objects. Fashion is not a race or a competition, it is a relaxant and a quiet control over the people around you. Endless businessmen in suits and teenagers in sports gear. If it is fashionable, it is boring.
“Do not complain about anything to which you need not subject yourself.”
You do not have the right to own a car. You do not have the right to be happy. You do not have the right to money, food, sex, drugs, speech, life, death, friends, combat or anything. There is no-one who deserves these things less than you.
The real world, the atoms, molecules and planets that whizz around do not give a shit about you, your problems or your perceived sociological underaccomplishments. These are the objects that govern reality, and none of them could give a shit whether they happen to move in your favour or not.
It is up to you to take these rights. It is up to you to realize that no-one but yourself can make you happy. You must take rights for yourself, using whatever society you are in to achieve a balance, a happiness, a stability.
Have the confidence not to have to show off by buying expensive label clothes.
YOU HAVE POTENTIAL NOT TO BE STUPID
So take that chance.
Most people are so stupidly dumb that you simply don't know where to start. Stupidity is the main problem - I don't mean "being bright" but mundane stupidity. For example, judging a person on their appearance. Saying that you "hate homosexuals" without actually knowing any. This kind of mindless prejudice and superficial thinking is easy to end - you've just got to think more, and imagine other people's lives more. The only disadvantage is that insecure people will like you less.
In many ways Satanism is nihilistic. Satanism is full of "no"s, full of reactionary criticism against religious values and the value of religion, full of misanthropic scorn for the masses of mankind and full of commentary on the negative aspects of society. Like all great philosophers and the most powerful thinkers, LaVey preached that the majority of mankind are mindless and unworthy. Likewise Hitler said "what luck for rulers that men do not think".
Nietzsche writes "Throughout the ages the wisest of men have passed the same judgement on life: it is no good... Always and everywhere their mouths have been heard to produce the same sound -- a sound full of doubt, full of melancholy, full of weariness of life, full of resistance to life"4.
People attain varying shades of greatness. Some become great and lead humankind forward, successfully encouraging others to shake off their shackles and dogmas, and face the wondrous world with imagination and open-mindedness. Some become great through beauty, acting, entertainment, or other temporal endeavours, and find their egos drag them onwards. Both the humanistic greats and the egotistical greats are prone to thinking themselves better than others, and both can often be found bemoaning the state of the masses. Are you with me, or are you part of the deluded herd? Because of the two types of greatness I mention above, one is formed of breakable china, and the other is formed from rock, upon which we build humankind's greatest scientific, technological and moral victories. When looks and talent fade, who has left the enduring legacy on which others can build? They are the greats, and they are ones who have permission to announce their disgrace at the state of humankind! Follow them, copy them, be inspired by them and read their books!
Despite the misanthropy, nihilism, doubt, questioning and reactionary rage, Satanism is not a religion for the depressive introvert. On the contrary, it turns out that Satanists are proud, noble, strong, effective, and life-embracing. How does such a negative view of humans and society result in such a turnaround in the personal self?
In his book "The Outsider", Colin Wilson traces the history of many of the great minds that he calls Outsiders. People who succumb to Nietzsche's observant statement that the greatest minds are all weary of those around them and of life. People who have, largely, gone insane with a fixation on misery and despair. These people need, as Colin Wilson concludes in his wondrous work of philosophy and history, the ability to give an "absolute yes" to themselves and to their life and also to their life experiences.
The iconoclasm and destructive side isn't the whole truth about Satanism nor indeed is nihilism the total of Nietzsche's outlook. Because both are pro-life, both say "yes" to life, to indulgence, and to the shaking off of values that restrict mankind rather than expand it. Satanism, although nihilistic, appears to for all practical purposes to be positive. Something about the mindset of the Satanist can be explained by Nietzsche's analysis of the problem of the misanthropy of the greats:
“I myself was first struck by this impertinent thought, that the great wise men are declining types, [...] I recognized [them] as symptoms of decay [...] these wisest of men, were somehow in physiological agreement in order to have [...] the same negative attitude towards life.”
He concludes that these declining types are imbalanced, that they impose on themselves guilt-ridden judgements born of their distaste of humanity. Satanism, through love of the flesh (Belial) and affirmation of the Human spirit (Lucifer) embraces life. Satanists are told, and automatically find that they agree, that their own lives are worth preserving. This basic permission to say "yes" to oneself is essential for nihilistic and pessimistic minds, such as Satanists, Colin Wilson and Nietzsche. Self-denial, as a sign of inner decay, is a sign of moral and intellectual failure:
“We must really stretch out our fingers and make the effort to grasp this astonishing finesse, that the value of life cannot be assessed. Not by a living person because he is an interested party, indeed even the object of dispute, and not the judge; nor by a dead person, for a different reason. For a philosopher to see a problem in the value of life is thus even an objection against him, a question mark against his wisdom, a piece of unwisdom.”
When a Satanist says "Bow down before me, for I am the highest embodiment of Human Life" (The Satanic Bible7) it is an absolute yes to himself. Most people do not admit it, but we nearly all consider ourselves better and more worthy than those around us. Satanists admit it... and as a religion of the ego (the only such religion!) this kind of positive self-worth dogma is vitally powerful, especially as an opposite to the critical thinking at which Satanists excel.
Despite the final and fatal come down, enjoyment is the point of life and if you have skills you almost definitely enjoy using them, so the artist should express himself in art, the diabolicist should blaspheme, the singer should sing and all the while we should cultivate our strengths and mind our weaknesses in the appropriate manner of the strategist and creative self-realizer.
There are not many religions that embrace the world as it is, that are materialistic and hedonistic: Satanism is definitely one of them. The first of the nine Satanic Statements is that "Satan represents indulgence, instead of abstinence!". Anton LaVey, the founder of the Church of Satan, explained "the difference between indulgence and compulsion. Indulgence can be controlled, compulsion controls." and hence argued that a Satanist, although indulgent, is not controlled by the passions8.
Clearly such a hedonistic approach places Satanism squarely within the world-affirming category of religions. Other doctrines accord with this too; the emphasis on this world and the denial of any other spiritual realms, and the focus on science and intelligence. The scholar Asbjørn Dyrendal surveyed Satanism and agrees that "both rationalist and esoteric Satanisms are primarily world-affirming forms of self-spirituality. They see success in society and the world as it is as a valid and desirable goal"9. So, from The Satanic Bible:
“Life is the one great indulgence; death the one great abstinence. To a person who is satisfied with his earthly existence, life is like a party; and no one likes to leave a good party. By the same token, if a person is enjoying himself here on earth he will not so readily give up this life for the promise of an afterlife about which he knows nothing.”
Satan, then, represents our ties to this world, our ego, successes, the things we want to do in this world. Satan is the things that keep us tied to this world, not wanting to escape it. It represents the fact that we're not willing to give up worldly things for spiritual goals ('Spiritual pipe dreams') attained for an afterlife. Suicide is never an option for Satanists - we fight to the end, we do not want to escape from reality!
Current edition: 2002 Nov 09
Last Modified: 2013 Nov 01
Originally published 1998
Parent page: The Description, Philosophies and Justification of Satanism
All #tags used on this page - click for more:
Gilmore, Peter. High Priest of the Church of Satan (as of 2001+).
(2007) The Satanic Scriptures. Hardback book. Published by Scapegoat Publishing, USA. Compendium of texts. Many essays are new editions of older texts by Gilmore.
LaVey, Anton. (1930-1997) Founder of the Church of Satan.
(1969) The Satanic Bible. Paperback book. Published by Avon Books Inc, New York, USA. Anton LaVey founded the Church of Satan in 1966..
(1992) The Devil's Notebook. Paperback book. Published by Feral House, CA, USA.
Nietzsche, Friedrich. (1844-1900)
(1885) Thus Spake Zarathustra. Paperback book.
(1888) Twilight of the Idols. Paperback book. 1998 Oxford World Classics translation by Duncan Large. Originally published 1889.
(1956) The Outsider. Paperback book. Reissued 2001. Published by Orion Books Ltd.
Wilson, E. O.
(1998) Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge. Hardback book. Published by Little, Brown and Company, London, UK. Professor Wilson is a groundbreaking sociobiologist.