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Hello, Visitor!

Let me introduce myself to you: My name is Marko and I'm a gay man, born in 1970, living in Finland. Married.
I have been blogging since 2003, and I have five blogs at the moment; this is the only one in English, created for international readers. All my blogs concern spirituality from different angles, because that has always been a major thread in my life; My way is very, very unique in that sense that I have completely changed my course several times.
So you, reader, must understand that posts on this blog bear witness of personal evolution, and my thoughts and beliefs today are not necessarily the same.
Today I'm a practicing Nichiren Buddhist, independent of any Sect.
I would be happy to know other people all around the world, who may feel we have something in common and would like to get to know me better! Send me a message through the contact form, thanks.

12/08/2013

SATAN LOVES YOU!

  "We also have the prophetic message as something completely reliable, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts." (2 Peter 1:19)
In Latin Vulgate:
"...Et habemus firmiorem propheticum sermonem cui bene facitis adtendentes quasi lucernae lucenti in caliginoso loco donec dies inlucescat et lucifer oriatur in cordibus vestris."
This is my attempt to explain why a person like me, who honors Jesus Christ, is also "tempted" (I don't  really like to use that word because it may give a wrong impression in this context) by Satanism, and what "Satanism" actually means to me in the first place.
Marko (the blonde one).
When a teenager speaks of being a Satanist, I think it's because of seeking for attention and pursuit for oddity. There have been cases like vandalizing graveyards and even burning churches - at least in Nordic countries - attributed to Devil worship, and proud Satanists surely disclaim that; it is stupid and immature behaviour. 
When a middle-aged person like myself, speaks of Satanism in positive tone, it is result of life-experience and a lot of thinking. I must admit there is much about life that has made me rather cynical - but perhaps it's better to say I consider myself to be a cynical realist. I feel that Faith in Light alone is insufficient. Darkness has its rightful place in the universe, and it is not actually "evil" at all.
Let me make it clear: I don't believe in Satan as an entity, neither I believe in Absolute evil. There is simply nothing absolute in this world - everything is relative, including "good" and "evil". It's like yin and yang - there is no white without a little black, and vice versa.
I'm willing to admit there might be "evil spirits", so to speak, who may influence on the living according to their specific mortal weaknesses, "tempting" them, but evil comes from the human heart, and I'm inclined towards believing with Emanuel Swedenborg, that these beings are no more than deceased humans, whose nature is evil (and yet, I don't believe this state is permanent either; after long period of purification they too may enter Heaven, once they realize their condition and wish to change).
I don't claim to fully understand this Mystery of good and evil, I only see poetic fragments and vague visions. I have no more need to find explanations for all things in life - to "know" for sure. It's impossible. Sure you can choose philosophy that pleases you and stick to it, yet it is only one theory among others. This writing is not giving you all the answers, but it shows various ways to proceed on, trying to find your own answers - if you feel need for them.

Light and Darkness 

Goethe's theory of colours states that to perceive colours, interaction of light and shadow is needed  - contrary to Newton's popularly accepted claim that white light contains full spectrum of colours. I think that is remarkably true also in metaphysical sense, concerning the whole of human life!
Another picture that made an impression on me since I first heard of it years ago - it's so obvious you have hardly thought about it: we think space is dark and black as we see it in the starry sky, but in reality it is full of sun light which only becomes visible when it meets an object, an obstacle, like planet. What an analog! "The light shines in the darkness..."

Eliphas Lévi on Satan and Lucifer...

The great Eliphas Lévi wrote: 
Satan is merely a type, not a real personage. It is the type opposed to the Divine type, the necessary foil to this in our imagination. It is the factitious shadow which renders visible to us the infinite light of the Divine. If Satan was a real personage then would there be two Gods, and the creed of the Manicheans would be a truth.
Satan is the imaginary conception of the absolute in evil; a conception necessary to the complete affirmation of the liberty of the human will, which, by the help of this imaginary absolute seems able to equilibrate the entire power even of God. It is the boldest, and perhaps, the sublimest of the dreams of human pride.
"You shall be as Gods knowing good and evil," saith the allegorical serpent in the Bible. Truly to make evil a science is to create a God of evil, and if any spirit can eternally resist God, there is no longer one God but two Gods. To resist the Infinite, infinite force is necessary, and two infinite forces opposed to each other must neutralize each other. If resistance on the part of Satan is possible the power of God no longer exists, God and the Devil destroy each other, and man remains alone; he remains alone with the phantom of his Gods, the hybrid sphynx, the winged bull, which poises in its human hand a sword of which the wavering lightnings drive the human imagination from one error to the other, and from the despotism of the light, to the despotism of the darkness.
The history of mundane misery is but the romance of the war of the Gods, a war still unfinished, while the Christian world still adores a God in the Devil, and a Devil in God. The antagonism of powers is anarchy in Dogma. Thus to the church which affirms that the Devil exists the world replies with a terrifying logic: then God does not exist; and it is vain to seek escape from this argument to invent the supremacy of a God who would permit a Devil to bring about the damnation of men; such a permission would be a monstrosity, and would amount to complicity, and the god that could be an accomplice of the devil, cannot be God.
The Devil of Dogmas is a personification of Atheism. The Devil of Philosophy is the exaggerated ideal of human free-will. The real or physical Devil is the magnetism of evil. Raising the Devil is but realizing for an instant this imaginary personality. This involves the exaggeration in one's self beyond bounds of the perversity of madness by the most criminal and senseless acts. The result of this operation is the death of the soul through madness, and often the death of the body even, lightning-struck, as it were, by a cerebral congestion. The Devil ever importunes, but nothing ever gives in return. St. John calls it "the Beast" (la Bête) because its essence is human folly (la Bêtise humaine).
 And of Lucifer, he wrote:
Glory to the Holy Ghost, who has promised victory over earth and over heaven to the angel of liberty! The angel of liberty was born before the dawn of the first day, before even the awakening of intelligence, and God called him the morning star.
O Lucifer! Voluntarily and disdainfully thou didst detach thyself from the heaven where the sun drowned thee in his splendour, to plow with thine own rays the unworked fields of night! Thou shinest when the sun sets, and thy sparkling gaze precedes the daybreak! Thou fallest to rise again; thou tastest of death to understand life better!
For the ancient glories of the world, thou art the evening star; for truth renascent, the lovely star of dawn. Liberty is not licence, for licence is tyranny. Liberty is the guardian of duty, because it reclaims right. Lucifer, of whom the dark ages have made the genius of evil, will be truly the angel of light when, having conquered liberty at the price of infamy, he will make use of it to submit himself to eternal order, inaugurating thus the glories of voluntary obedience. 

 Rudolf Steiner and two evils

 Distinction between the two, Lucifer and Satan, is made by many. Rudolf Steiner was one spiritual teacher who systematically taught there exists not one, but two basic personifications of "evil", Lucifer being one, and the other he named after evil principle of Zoroastrianism: Ahriman (a.k.a. Satan).
"Lucifer appeals to our pride and ambition. He wants us to think we have no limitations..." "Ahriman seeks the opposite of Lucifer. When Lucifer would hold us back, Ahriman wishes us to advance far faster than is good for us..." "In sum: Luciferic beings lead us to underestimate and flee from the earth while Ahrimanic beings lead us to overestimate and crave the earth." (James H. Hindes: Renewing Christianity - Rudolf Steiner's ideas in practice. Anthroposophic Press 1996)
 I don't personally buy his theory, at least entirely, but I have to admit it's quite useful hypothesis to work with, because it shows how relative concepts we are dealing with. Especially "Good" according to Steiner's theory, is not something opposite to evil: it is in the middle of two evils, like Christ on the cross between two criminals. Good is a living principle, a stream that can't be calculated. There is a middle way, the spiritual centre, between two extremities, which are negative when they are one-sided. Evil is diverged either to the left or to the right, and it firmly takes a particular form - it has fallen behind. However, Steiner also points out that both Lucifer and Ahriman are necessary in their rightful places: "We need the pride and self esteem which come from Lucifer to remind us that we are spiritual beings who have ideals and that at times should reach for the stars regardless of our earthly situation. So, too, we need a sober estimation of our possibilities based on the weight of our earthly situation." (Same source as above)
There are others, however, who declare that Satan and Lucifer are more like two sides of one coin, or two faces of one being. It seems obvious they are more than just two names given for one character, each having its own characteristics. 

The Church of Satan

Founding of the Church of Satan in 1968 meant the New Era for Satanism, for it was now made public. I have read the Satanic Bible by Anton LaVey, and I'm also reading memoirs of Michael Aquino, who was active in the Church of Satan until he founded the Temple of Set. I can understand conclusions that may have led people to philosophy like that, and there's nothing scary about it to me, but basically it's just Atheism in very aggressive guise, and it's hard to see anything positive and constructive in that; but at least it's honest, and challenging fundamentalistic Christianity, showing what it really is, a truly insidious and devilish evil force - a wolf in sheep's clothing - making a lot of damage in human psyche in the name of God!

God's Quality

In Hebrew, Satan means “the accuser,” or “the adversary", and it is used in the Hebrew Bible as a title, not as a name of being. Satan was not originally a person, but one of God's qualities; not a being, but one of God's forces. In 2 Samuel 24:1 we read: "Again the anger of the Lord burned against Israel, and he incited David against them, saying, 'Go and take a census of Israel and Judah.'" The Chronicles that were written later, tell a same incident differently: "Satan rose up against Israel and incited David to take a census of Israel." (1 Chr.21:1)
Indeed; Freud wrote that perhaps not much ability for analysis is needed to guess that God and the Devil were originally identical, and God was lonesome personality who was later divided into two personalities, defined by opposite qualities. In original religion God had all those terrible characteristics, of which gathered together his opposite was later formed.

Satan is saved!

Why doesn't God destroy the Tempter, asked Finnish Lutheran Vicar, Voitto Viro, in the 60's, and he answered: because God loves him! Love never destroys anyone, but rather suffers for the loved one. And then Voitto Viro boldly suggests: when we start to pray for him and love him, completely new realization of the Christian light is dawning!
Church Father Origen taught, that in the end even Satan is saved!

Muslims and Yazidis

In Quran, Satan (Iblis) is a Jinn who refused to bow to Adam, and it caused him to fall out of Grace with God. Religious Kurdish community of the Yazidis have been accused of Devil worship by Muslims. They believe in one God who created the world and entrusted it into the care of seven Holy Beings or Angels, and preeminent among these is Tawûsê Melek (frequently known as "Melek Taus" in English publications), the Peacock Angel. The story regarding Tawûsê Melek's rise to favor with God is almost identical to the story of the jinn Iblis in Islam, except that Yazidis revere Tawûsê Melek for refusing to submit to God by bowing to Adam. However, Yazidis believe he is a leader of the archangels, not a fallen one, and not a source of evil; source of evil is in the heart and spirit of humans themselves! (From Wikipedia)
Sufi Mystics also viewed Iblis as a lover of God who refused to worship anyone but God.

Snake in the Garden

Snake in the garden of Eden is misunderstood creature. Some Gnostics interpret it as symbol of Christ, who opened the eyes of Adam and Eve, and awakened them from the blissful darkness of unawareness to the disturbing light of self-awareness. Before the snake, Adam and Eve just blindly obeyed. In fact, paradise-like state was very unintellectual and morally lazy for man. Only after the Fall man became man with his good and bad aspects. Story depicts awakening from vagueness of original consciousness to self experience, from instinctive state to become aware of good and evil. This was great progress in evolution. Man as freely operating being is naturally the opposite of soulless perfection, which in reality would be imperfection if it had forced him to commit acts he wouldn't have rejoiced of. He would not know the difference between God and a rock. According to Friedrich Schiller, the Fall was the happiest moment of the world history. There are no words "sin" and "fall" in the Scripture, but there is "banishment": it is part of child birth, child is banished from the womb where everything was easy - now it's time for life, work, pains, and sexuality.
Remember, Moses made a bronze snake and put it up on a pole, as the Lord told him, and Jesus said to his followers,  "be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves"! In ancient Middle East snake was a symbol of wisdom, and mediator, representing ability to comprehend incoherence of life: some snakes are poisonous, some are not.

Blavatsky: Paganism and Kabbalah

How convenient to accuse some supernatural being of our own faults. Yet, man is not all corrupt; be there the original sin (and I'm not sure if there is), there is also a seed of original goodness in us; that is inborn quality, evil is alien to us and comes from without. (See in this blog: Some reflections on the problem of evil according to Pekka Ervast.)
 H.P. Blavatsky writes in her massive work, The Secret Doctrine: ... "Christian theology, although following slavishly in the steps of Paganism, was only true to its own time-honoured policy. It had to isolate itself, and to assert its authority. Hence it could not do better than turn every pagan deity into a devil. Every bright sun-god of antiquity -- a glorious deity by day, and its own opponent and adversary by night, named the Dragon of Wisdom, because it was supposed to contain the germs of night and day -- has now been turned into the antithetical shadow of God, and has become Satan on the sole and unsupported authority of despotic human dogma. After which all these producers of light and shadow, all the Sun and the Moon Gods, were cursed, and thus the one God chosen out of the many, and Satan, were both anthropomorphised." [...] "The Kabbalists say that the true name of Satan is that of Jehovah placed upside down, for 'Satan is not a black god but the negation of the white deity,' or the light of Truth. God is light and Satan is the necessary darkness or shadow to set it off, without which pure light would be invisible and incomprehensible."

Pekka Ervast: Satan and his abnegation

Pekka Ervast [see the links on the sidebar] also taught about Satan: in reality Satan is quite different from the picture Christian doctrine has made of him. In the Book of Job he is member of the counsel of gods. He is infinitely great angel, high divine being, one of the most supreme rulers of our Solar System. According to Ervast, seven holy platenary spirits represent - along with the representative of the Sun - the highest dominion in our Solar System. Satan is the planetary spirit of the Earth. He is the director of the action of Karma. His mission is to school human beings, who must solve the problem of good and evil. This planet is the school of suffering. It means infinite abnegation for Satan; he mustn't show himself at all - he only must give his great power for people to use, and in a way, mask himself. It is not a pleasant task for him; it brings him curses, not glory. His abnegation is, that he can't directly use his goodness and wisdom: we are too small to understand more than that it is great abnegation to decline everything by order and for love for beings who must evolve, and only give one's creative power for others fairly ignorant to misuse.
Since Jesus of Nazareth, Christ has become the Higher Self of the Earth, but Satan is still the Lower Self of the Earth. Satan continues his work, but he may already see new dawn rising, slowly but surely. In a way, Satan was redeemed through the work of Christ.

 The Process Church of the Final Judgment

The 1960's movement, The Process Church of the Final Judgment, is one that I find very fascinating, for they had intriguing theology intergrating Jehovah, Christ, Lucifer and Satan! For example, an  article called "The Unity of Christ and Satan" states the following:
"CHRIST said: Love your enemies.
CHRIST's Enemy was SATAN and SATAN's Enemy was CHRIST.
Through Love enmity is destroyed.
Through Love saint and sinner destroy the enmity between them.
Through Love CHRIST and SATAN have destroyed their enmity
and come together for the End;
CHRIST to Judge, SATAN to execute the Judgement.
The Judgement is WISDOM; the execution of the Judgement is LOVE."

 The Star of Azazel

Today I have found only one spiritual movement that answers to my gut feeling. While all other movements say you have to choose either left or right, this one is saying there is the third way including both. It is Finnish Society called the Star of Azazel -  presenting Theosophical world view with Satanism. They don't deny God and even revere Jesus.
 Aptest angel and the lovliest!
a God betrayed, to whom no anthems rise,

Satan, take pity on my sore distress! 

Prince of exiles, exiled Prince who, wronged,
yet rises ever stronger from defeat,

Satan, take pity on my sore distress! 

Omniscient ruler of the hidden realm,
patient healer of all human pain,

Satan, take pity on my sore distress! 

etc. (Les Litanies de Satan by Charles Baudelaire)

Read more:

A Lucid Look at Lucifer by Dr. Harrell Rhome 

Lucifer, the Eastern Crown Prince of Satanism

Paradise Lost by John Milton (yes, I have actually read it, from cover to cover!)

Some Light on Lucifer by Ina Belderis

Wikipedia: Lucifer and Prometheus

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