The Devil You Say?

I’m not a legal expert but this seems to me to have teeth, and to show compassion appropriate to anyone who says they possess a moral creed.

I prefer to let my conversations with Lucifer remain between us. Ill talk to just about anybody who will talk to me, and consider both “God”, “Jesus” and “The Devil”, the way I learned about them in my childhood to be powers, entities, that can be related to and worked with the same as any other being. Ive had some contact through Black Metal people and events, and they have been illustrative to me of the the power that can be had when our biological instincts are combined with theatrical ritual.

I consider myself to benefit from a rare position because I was never raised Christian. I had enough children in evangelical families to introduce some interesting ideas later on but they were not my foundational ideas. Thus I never had a Saviour, a Devil, someone tempting me to be evil and someone saving me from that. I don’t know what it would be like to be born and raised Christian but I see the effects. I see people who feel a calling or obligation to return to the Church, people who ascribe “temptation” and “sin” to an outside force (or even think that these are a thing), and especially who believe in or aspire to be a sacrificial figure for the benefit of the whole community. Ive seen people long separated from all Churches still express admiration for the “Idea of Christ”. Maybe later I will write a longer article of how I perceive Jesus.

My experience of Lucifer has led me to believe that he governs what happens when we deny our natural instincts. Sex, aggression, love, attraction, eating, sleep, just cutting loose and going out dancing once in a while, these are natural desires to have. I believe I avoid the attention of Lucifer by indulging these with moderation and temperance on occasion, rather than treating them with denial and suppression. I believe Lucifer represents what happens when suppressed desires become changed, extreme and harmful. This is not what the Satanic Temple believes, you can find their seven tenets here.

I applaud this kind of civic mindedness an altruism in any group, especially those with an ethical mandate. I am too socially-minded to commit to individual liberty to that extreme. I also am unwilling to base my understanding solely on what can be proven scientifically. But I don’t find the various tenets of Satanic groups to be more objectionable than any group in particular, and better than a lot.

The murders of Michael Brown, Eric Garner and other African Americans killed at the hands of white police officers have made international headlines, and I am watching the proceeding lack of charges pressed with horror and concern. I just watched a video taken by Morpheus Ravenna of the Coru Cathubodua of protesters in Berkley singing. At that moment the penny finally dropped for me in a visceral way that people are really dying.
I have never seen pagan culture being this political before. When I marched with 700 thousand other people in Montreal against Bush Jr’s invasion of Iraq I did not see pagans identifying themselves as such, nor did I see organization by pagans for this or any protest beforehand (though I did hear in the news that some were at the Battle of Quebec City against the WTO trade talks in 2001). During my environmental and climate activism since 2003 I’ve not seen any contingents from the Halifax pagan community though it does exist. I did not organize pagans into that force as I did not see much interest, and so joined others that were interested in activism, and considered that action to be my own spiritual practice as a solitary. To make a long story short, I see radical pagan thought now and I like it; I think it’s been a long time coming.
There was a protest organized in Halifax by Dalhousie students¬† following the murders of people of colour at the hands of police in the US, but it was called off at the organizers’ request, who realised there was no presence by people of colour on the organizational committee. There are sizable communities of colour in my region and they do face discrimination and racism. There are now and have been instances of environmental racism, decisions of where to route and dispose of toxic waste, forced migrations and dispossession of the Loyalist Maroons that came here over three hundred years ago, given land for their military service against the American revolution by King George. Historical Black Nova Scotians continue to face hatred and fear I have observed in people around me, and live in impoverished, violent and highly segregated neigbourhoods and few people seem to question this.
I don’t want to speak for others in speculating why rallies have not been organized here but police dynamics are different, and perhaps the time is not right here. But I am watching, Canadians are watching, we are appalled and outraged.

Response to Theurgic Binding

I’m Silence Ocelfa and I’ve served the Morrigan as a priestess and medium for nine years. You probably haven’t heard of me, as I tend to be very private about this aspect of my life. I’ve been a fan and admirer of Morpheus Ravenna’s work, and other priestesses like Stephanie Woodfield, Jes Finnegan Clark and my friend Morgaine Nightshade.

About a month ago, Ravenna posted this post which resulted in much discussion and controversy. I was not in a headspace to invite controversy at that time (still would like encourage civil discussion if possible) and waited on posting this. Maybe posting this is out-of-date, or going to ruffle feathers all over again. But I wanted to add my $0.02, and even though I am technically on sabbatical and working on myself rather than accepting spiritual work, I have been solitary a long time, and would like to reach out to other practitioners.

Yes we serve greater things in and sometimes with our lives, but these greater things are made up of the smaller units of our lives; the lives of people and other living things, their values, their dramas and their right to exist. Perhaps your practice even enriches your own life. When we serve the gods it’s not to make their lives more enjoyable because they are bigger and more powerful than us, that would be nepotism to the highest degree. We serve Them because it helps Them serve the whole.

If your worship is not serving the whole, if it is only making you miserable to the benefit of a higher being, perhaps it’s time to reconsider being involved in the worship. Ravenna is right that oaths to enter service to the gods are not to be entered into lightly, and should if possible have a lengthy period of consideration. Asa West is correct that renegotiation is possible. You’re not fucked forever if you have entered into one of these contracts without enough consideration, and even if you were, panic and terror are not helpful responses in the long-term.

I’m not sure how much detail it is useful for me to go into about my own practice so I will be brief. Suffice to say I was asked to make a commitment of devotion pretty much out of the blue ten years ago in 2004. I took a good month to consider the offer and declined at the end of that period. Five months after that I was informed that “No” was not the correct response and pressured into priesthood. I might not have tried everything to refuse or at least gain some breathing space, but I tried a lot. I live in a small town in an isolated location. I tried reaching out for help and advice or mentorship but it was not to be found. After I accepted and did my dedication (alone), teachers started trickling into my life and offering much needed coaching and advice.I’ve subsequently assisted other sibling followers in the same situation I was.

It is good to negotiate your own terms, do your own research and not take dedication lightly. But it is not always possible to find a mentor first, take months to consider or even to refuse. It might be easy to find examples and mentorship in the bright lights of California or the heavily populated United States, but it is not so everywhere. We shall just have to work to make mentors more available to potential devotees, and I applaud the work already being done in that regard as it is not easy.

After 7 years of service I was able to take a breather from my practice and regain some perspective. As far as I can tell I was asked (for the first time) if I wanted to continue mediumship practice and I said no, but I remain a follower and devotee. I continue with the work I have been assigned which is work I would do anyway if I weren’t bonded. I just get help, direction and motivation this way.