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Some Thoughts On Laveyan Satanism and Left Hand and Right Hand Path Religions

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    Some Thoughts On Laveyan Satanism and Left Hand and Right Hand Path Religions

    I’m currently reading a book about Goetia, Qabalah, and the Qliphoth, and it has me reminiscing on how back in high school I was really interested in Laveyan Satanism (LS). I was raised heavily Catholic growing up and LS was refreshing to me in that it seemed to attract those who wanted to operate with a purity of intent and action that I say was occluded in the Christians I knew. I’ve read part of the Satanic Bible back in the day, but didn’t finish it (I’m notorious for not finishing books). Considering that it was published in 1969, it was paradoxically a product and reflection of its time, revolutionary, and part of a long-standing occultic tradition.

    The Satanic Bible/LS was very much born out of the spirit of the anti-establishment sentiment of the 60s in a similar but different vein of the hippie movement, anti Vietnam War protests, and the Black Civil Rights movement. Philosophically, LS has roots in Epicureanism, Nietzsche, Ayn Rand, materialism, secularism, and Western occultism. But unlike the rest of these anti-establishment movements, it had strong Social Darwinist and Randian (like I mentioned before) elements. If I had to place it on the political spectrum it would lean towards right-wing libertarianism with its strong emphasis on individualism and individual liberty, nobility in strength, and the natural principle of the strong overcoming the weak. With its anti-transcendentalism and materialism, it’s very much the spirituality of the capitalist spirit.

    With that said, I do want to go into some detail into the differences between left hand path and right hand path traditions. Wikipedia distinguishes these two by this,

    Right-Hand Path
    The Right-Hand Path is commonly thought to refer to magical or religious groups which adhere to a certain set of characteristics:

    1.They divide the concepts of mind, body and spirit into three separate, albeit interrelated, entities.

    2. They adhere to a specific moral code and a belief in some form of judgement, such as karma or the Threefold Law.
    The occultist Dion Fortune considered Abrahamic religions to be RHP.

    Left-Hand Path
    The historian Dave Evans studied self-professed followers of the Left-Hand Path in the early 21st century, making several observations about their practices:

    1. They often reject societal convention and the status quo, which some suggest is in a search for spiritual freedom. As a part of this, LHP followers embrace magical techniques that would traditionally be viewed as taboo, for instance using sex magic or embracing Satanic imagery. As Mogg Morgan wrote, the "breaking of taboos makes magic more potent and can lead to reintegration and liberation, [for example] the eating of meat in a vegetarian community can have the same liberating effect as anal intercourse in a sexually inhibited straight society."

    2. They often question religious or moral dogma, instead adhering to forms of personal anarchism.

    3. They often embrace sexuality and incorporate it into magical ritual.
    Of course this is a very broad strokes view of the two, but this is generally how it goes. Philosophically, right hand path religions like Christianity and mainstream strands of Buddhism and Hinduism tend toward the metaphysic of the One, the One and the All, “we are all One" and live under the providence of a higher power or principle. Universal consciousness precedes matter and embodiment. We are embodiments or representations of this universal consciousness or spirit. However, since the world is filled with sin and illusion, our relationship to this universal principle is occluded, and we must transcend the ways of the world in order to reconnect with it. The separation and interrelationship between the mind, body, and soul mirrors the many layers of reality that obscures us from this first principle.

    On the other hand, left hand path philosophies typically operate under this principle,

    [..]solve et coagula ("dissolve and precipitate"), confronting the negative in order to transmute it into desirable qualities. Left-handed path practitioners descend towards union with the divine to obtain Godhood status, with God-like powers of their own, having reunited with the ultimate divine source-energy; then once there, taking one more step separating from that divinity, out of this creation into a new creation of their own making, with themselves as the sole divinity of the new universe, apart from the previous creation.(Wikipedia)
    If RHP traditions emphasize ultimate cosmic union, then LHP traditions emphasize separation and dissolution with the Divine in order to establish and exercise personal power. In the book I’m reading, the 10 sephiroth of the Tree of Life operate in equal unity, none overcomes the other, and it’s when the one of the sephira (Geburah in particular in Lurianic Qabbalah) over exerts its influence is how evil enters creation and the emergence of the ten parallel emanations of the Tree of Life from this fissure is called Schebirath ha-Kelim (Hebrew for “breaking of the vessels”). Thus the Tree of Death, Qliphoth, was born. Another key distinction between the LHP and RHP traditions is how they treat evil. Evil, for the most part, can be divided into 4 categories:

    1. Natural Evil - Disease, natural disasters, the cruelty of nature

    2. Moral Evil - How we conceptualize and prescribe our thoughts and behaviors

    3. Metaphysical Evil - The imperfection of creation which can be backboned by,

    4. Primordial Evil - A cosmological account of evil and how it proceeds human and material existence.

    Different religions will have differing accounts on 1, 3, and 4, but for the most part have similar accounts on 2 (speaking of RHP traditions). At least according to the Satanic Bible, the existence of God and Satan is a thing (there’s the common misconception that it’s entirely atheistic). But they view God as a primordial, cosmic force that’s indifferent to the affairs of humans. Rather than an anthropomorphic deity whose relatively concerned with what we do, God is treated as an abstract property of the universe similar to atoms, electrons, etc but with more symbolic impact. Symbolically, God and Satan represent certain mentalities and aspects of consciousness. If God represents blind allegiance to authority, resentiment, order, and slave morality, then Satan represents freedom, creativity, chaos, and master morality. From that follows an ethical system that doesn’t rest upon God and on appeasing him, but rather a more humanistic one based on science, some variation of the social contract, and honoring your self-interests while respecting others’ right to follow theirs. There’s no transcendence from this world and our base instincts but rather a disciplined honing of those instincts to help us be more self-aware and find the power that’s immanent within the self.
    Last edited by Mahat; 07-18-2020, 10:21 PM.

    Hey it's Ken,

    You're reading Karlssons book right?

    I'd recommend checking out some of this guys YT material, he frames the LHP and RHP well.


    • Mahat
      Mahat commented
      Editing a comment
      Thank you for the link . And yes, it’s Karlsson’s book.