The sensual person’s heaven against the monopoly of religion and tradition

Damn near every religion familiar to most people seems insistent in the belief that salvation and/or enlightenment is impossible for the sensual human being to attain. Even the Tao Te Ching, a fundamental text of the Taoist tradition, seems to insist that human desire is to be let go of rather than be seen as natural. Well, what can I expect from the majority of religions? It seems fairly well-established, at least from the modern point of view, that the vast majority of religions are enable to profit off the human spirit without convincing mankind that he is doomed by mote of his basic drives and existence, and that he cannot attain any kind of salvation without the rejection of desire, that he cannot be spiritual without reducing himself to nothing. And always, the animal part of Man is rejected as lower, a thing to be shunned, rather than as a source of life, or even as a source of transformation.

I, the Satanist, say what is wrong with being human?

If we are to assume that the gods are but the projections of the self, created by Man, and if the afterlife is a creation of Man, then surely is it not within the human being to save him/herself on his/her own terms? Even if not, surely Man is not beholden to any external spiritual forces anymore. For thousands of years, Man has sought salvation from annihilation in the grip of death, and has only seen a way to do so in organized religion and in the gods of old (up to and including the so-called “One True God”). Thus in the process of “saving” himself, he has had to bargain his pride, his desires,often in his sense of the self, in obeisance in these bodies of organized religion and to these externalized deities, that he may secure a place in paradise – but in a paradise that is not his own. It is a paradise conjured in the terms of the men (and it usually was men) who designed it, and it can’t be guaranteed to suit every man and woman’s idea of spiritual paradise. Man has bartered that which his true being holds dear for salvation, but was Man really being saved, or were people simply sacrificing themselves to the predatory narcissism of those who wanted control over others? Either way, even there was salvation, it could only be at the whim of another man or a “God”, not on your own terms. It’s also worth mentioning that in much of the ancient world, the power of religion and the power of the state were either interrelated or much the same as one another – . Who could forget the examples of the “god-kings” of Egypt and the Aztecs (who were also linked with specific deities), or the “god-emperors” of Rome, China, and Japan? But in more recent ages, human beings have discovered, and are still in the process of discovering, that this does not have to be – another way can be created. There is now the prospect that the individual can enthrone him/herself as the only master of his/her spiritual life, dethroning the Gods that came before. Or rather, there is the discovery that Man has had the ability to choose this entire time – only that our kind has been unaware, or conditioned by countless generations of obedience to tradition. Can Man not dictate his/her own salvation, create his/her own paradise? If Man has had the choice this entire time, it must stand to reason that the individual human is capable dictating his/her own path, without needing to sacrifice one bit of his/her genuine nature out of the mistaken notion that you cannot be saved or enlightened simply because your sensual nature contradicts the teachings of those who may simply have wanted control over a flock of people.

In the world in which we live today, many of the mainstream religious traditions are losing power and losing influence. In particular in the Western world, Christianity is losing the influence it once had as the power of tradition and religion give way to a largely secular liberal climate, with some roadblocks ahead. Even in Japan where modern ideas have managed to harmoniously co-exist with old religious traditions, Buddhism is losing the influence it once had, as demonstrated by the lack of interest in the Buddhist monastery and the prospect of many Buddhist temples in Japan closing their doors within the next 25 years. There will doubtless be those who mourn for the decline of tradition, or rather the influence it once held over the minds of the masses, but on the other hand, the people are set to be freer than ever before to carve their own path. Even so, it is obvious that humans will still long for meaning, a sense that there must be more to this life than simply the mundane experience of this world. This is something that the materialistic/atheistic group-think of the modern world ignores frequently, its participants thinking that those who seek more than this life are enslaved by the delusion of religion. Surely in this age, we have the freedom to rule our own personal spiritual kingdom – a human kingdom, not one ruled by an external “God” – and direct our own lives rather than be ruled by others, or needing to rule others. We shall see paradise on our own terms, of our own creation, and as humans with desires and pride of worldly, and spiritual, accomplishments, rather than as followers of dying traditions, dethroned “Gods”, and psychic vampires.

Opposing Man’s war against the flesh

I recently came across a study from the American Psychological Association that states that the fear of porn addiction causes more psychological distress or harm than actual porn consumption. I saw an article related to the study that seemed to imply that our attitudes towards sex in general are part of the problem, and I saw some of the comments for the article where students seemed to show images where they illustrate their habits regarding watching porn, and they seemed trepidatious, like they were nervous about what they were doing and acted accordingly. They would watch porn, but they would still treat it like it was something perverted, shameful, or embarrassing, and I suppose in fairness that’s probably because they think it clashes with the familiar values of other people (perhaps authority figures). I began to feel like something was wrong. I felt like I have had tendencies to worried too much about my own personal urges and get myself down because I live without a partner with whom to share pleasure with, and worry about the effect that would have on my future life, when in fact anxiety is the real problem. And when I saw the way students expressed their attitudes towards their own porn consumption, it felt like that same cautiousness could be all too familiar in my own life. As someone who believes in liberal attitudes towards sex, I feel like the nervous attitude towards sex held by the human species is something that has to be fought and opposed indefinitely, and any worries must be cast into fire.

I write this because I want to speak against mankind’s pitiful war against its own flesh, senses, and urges. We are living in an age where we still treat pornography as a bogeyman because of our own attitudes towards sex in general. I feel the modern world tends to view sex as normal but at the same time dirty. People still tend to think of sex as a tawdry and alien thing, something that corrupts and devalues individuals, and I think this is part of the basis for why we demonize pornography. We see sex as degrading, dehumanizing, and devaluing, so we view pornography as degrading thing accordingly. There are those who treat pornography and sexual desire as being the corruptor of youth and the human mind, but I think it is they who should look in the mirror. Sexual desire is healthy, it’s a part of human being! Denying this, fearing this, is unhealthy, and it is the fear of sexuality that makes people less healthy, less happy, and more poisoned, twisted, and warped. The people who want to clamp down on human desire should look at themselves in the mirror because if they do, they might find that THEY are the corruptors of the human mind and youth. The fear of sex leads to the unwillingness to explore sexual desire, the unwillingness to embrace it, and the unwillingness to embrace education, which is a big problem for every successive generation of the human species because then each generation will know nothing about sex at all and that will cause so much problems for our species.

Most people attribute this to the influence of monotheistic religion and conservative values in mass culture and the minds of human beings, and I suppose there’s little point in denying that because those beliefs are the ones that teach sex is bad and those beliefs are the ones that people have been indoctrinated into believing in for centuries. But I think even if monotheistic religion falls, the idea of the bogeyman of sexual desire will live on in the feminism that has refused to abandon the tropes borrowed from monotheistic religion. Or perhaps, it will be nurtured by liberal political correctness as it is now. Either way, I feel that by rebelling against the anxiety of the masses and by the fighting of the doubt and anxiety the individual may feel within, humans will be able save themselves and our species from its own hopeless and damaging war against the flesh. If the common attitude towards sexual desire does not change, then I am certain the individual will not be the only one at stake. Not just because of the principle of liberty being desecrated, but because our attitude towards our own desire can affect everyone, including the next generation.

The warrior and the tiger

I don’t really care much for Tim Lambesis as a musical personality; in fact I dislike him as a general person for hiring a hit man to murder his wife, for pretending he was Christian after converting to atheism so that his band As I Lay Dying could sell records as a (falsely) Christian band, for apparently being the kind of the person who uses his atheism and rejection of religion to justify cheating on his wife (and thus playing right into the hands of falsely righteous Christians looking to say “see atheism justifies bad behaviour!”), and for getting himself fucked up on steroids. But all that aside, one of his tattoos gave me an idea. On his back, there’s a tattoo depicting a samurai fighting a tiger, and apparently it’s supposed to represent a conflict between reason and instinct. Depending on your perspective, you could say that in Tim’s case the tiger overpowered the warrior.

The tattoo in question

I didn’t think warriors were necessarily associated with reason, or at least reason as we tend to think of it in regards to solving problems with reason rather than force. I tend to think of the warrior as more associated with strength, virtue, discipline of the mind, honor, and devotion to principles. Thinking about it, the warrior as a symbolic force relates to why I like Asian culture and Asian religious images from India to Japan. The strength angle also seems to relate to my love of heavy metal, as I find it in most forms of heavy metal. However, the warrior as a symbol of the strong mind could also fit will with the faculties of reason or at least self-control. I remember being told once by a guy who was into astrology that the sword as symbol is the reshaping or extension of our purely aggressive urges (which would be symbolized by a knife) into something honorable. Perhaps this may be another angle to the symbolism of the warrior, but it might end up relying on the concept of instinct as a the core. With the tiger, I can definitely see the symbolic relation to animalistic instinct and nature, the same way I see in other predatory mammals and reptiles, and in images of the prehistoric world, and in the jungle (where tigers usually live, fittingly enough). Some traditional forms of metal also carry this over, namely old-style black metal. Perhaps you could argue the infernal forces are all about that which is base in us, but I’m not here to try and define Satan, demons, and Hell for today.

With that in mind, I’m actually thinking about some Tantric deities (from both Hindu and Buddhist Tantra); the kind that wear animal skins, bear weapons, are immersed in fire, and wearing crowns and jewelry. Thinking about it, they make me think of a harmonizing of the warrior and the tiger, discipline and instinct, the mind and the beast. It’s probably why I’ve fought of dressing like one of them.

Like what this guy’s doing. The costume is based on Vajrapani.

I see a similar angle in the symbolism of the Baphomet, since it presents harmony between the forces of the spiritual and the material, the logical and emotional, civilized and wild. Baphomet harmonizes the principles of the warrior and the principles of the tiger by bringing virtue and instinct together.

Ambition is not evil

Ambition and desire are one of the driving forces of human life and the world. Without it, there is no progress. Without ambition and the desire for more, nothing great is created, technology is not advanced, businesses can’t prosper, great achievements are never possible, and the standard of living is never improved.

So why then, do we consistently depict ambition as a solely evil thing in pop culture?

Time and time again in movies, ambition is depicted as a bad thing. And I’m not talking simply evil ambitions, or ambition taken to evil goals and lengths, I’m talking ambition as a whole. Hollywood seems to want you to think that ambition taken in a negative/evil direction and ambition as a whole are basically the same thing, even though they’re not. Ambition on its own is good, but it can be taken the wrong way and into morally reprehensible territory. That doesn’t mean ambition itself is evil, just the people who take it into the evil directions, and the actions that result.

Examples include the Star Wars prequel trilogy where Anakin’s ambition leads him to eventually joining the Sith and becoming Darth Vader, and all you hear is the negative way ambition is eventually taken in the form of his actions (and those of the Empire) in the classic series. Then there’s Thor, where Thor where Loki is ambitious, but then again so is Thor. The difference is that, like Anakin, Loki takes ambition to a less than desirable direction. And in the Avengers movie, Thor is shown as good because he overcome ambition, while Loki was evil not because of evil ambition, but because he still had it. Then there’s romantic comedies, which contain the most sexist form of this lie. Apparently, in romantic comedies, women who are ambitious live lives that are meaningless without the man in their life. Am I the only one who sees a problem with this message? And even if we’re shown and ambitious good guy, you only see the success, not the ambition. Examples of this include Tony Stark from Iron Man and Avengers, and Bruce Wayne from Batman.

Also, in the Dynasty Warriors series, Cao Cao is considered evil primarily because of his ambition. It’s what he talks about the most. Yes, in the games and the actual historical events they’re based on, he may have done some bad things, but he was actually a very honorable character as well as very ambitious. So clearly ambition did not, in itself, undermine the ability to have honor.

I don’t understand why we believe that ambition is evil, despite that it’s actually a good thing. The only way it’s a bad thing is if you take it in bad directions and lead it to bad actions.

Part of me thinks Christian thought is responsible for this. Since ambition is related to pride, and the Christian system views both as sinful, I think it’s also to do with the Christian story of Satan’s fall from grace. In this view, Satan was evil because he had pride and was ambitious, and saw himself as greater than “God” (thinking about it, he’s not that far off in his line of thought, but that’s beside the point), and for that reason he was cast out of heaven. Maybe it’s the Christian line of thought that influences Hollywood, because it seems Hollywood and Christianity are the only reasons for our insane aversion to ambition.

Chaos, Satanism, and balance

I’ve come to an interesting thought lately. I can be heavily individualistic and egoistic, and a Satanist, while respecting the idea of balance somewhere. Why does this matter? Because for a while I’ve had respect for the idea of balance in some way.

We humans are egoistic beings, and desire, ambition, ego, power, and will make us, the world, and the universe go round (in the universe’s case, that would have to be energy), but this doesn’t mean there’s not a down side to that.

There is nothing inherently wrong or evil with pride, but sometimes people obscure their judgement just for pride or stoop to the level of being real assholes. There is nothing inherently wrong with lust, but sometimes people can do horrible things to fulfill or express it. There is nothing inherently wrong with the pursuit of material goods, wealth, fortune and pleasure, but greedy people can sometimes use their wealth for evil purposes or maintain it by evil means. Power on its own is not evil, but it can be used by evil people for evil goals and purposes, and in the end, power is a tool, like any weapon, that can be used for any purpose by anyone.

It’s because of this general reality that I think there is a place for balance. I think some idea of balance can exist in a personal ideology oriented toward freedom, personal power, individualism, and selfhood. This balance involves taking charge. It involves seeing that our instincts are an important part of us and it’s natural to fulfill them, but we must take care that we don’t do too much harm or cross over into evil. Hedonism, personal power, and selfishness are not the same as evil, even if Western society thinks so, but it can be taken in evil directions. And remember that you are not the only one with the right to personal power and happiness, and don’t think you can trample all over others thinking otherwise. You are not the only one with freedom, self, and power. Do what you will, but beware of what you do, and don’t expect everything you do to go unopposed because actions do have consequences. And remember, nothing justifies stupidity.

In Shin Megami Tensei terms, it’s the ideology of the Chaos alignment with some Neutral tendencies or just respect for balance. In a certain way I feel this kind of balance, or my respect for the idea of balance, can be reflected in my liking of the colors red and purple. Red implies my affinity towards freedom, power, individualism, and Chaos, while purple represents balance or the respect towards it. Interestingly enough, purple is a mixture where red is more dominant than blue, so the purple could be said to be Neutral with a Chaos flair. Ultimately, I consider red and purple to be representative of that Chaos is the dominant ideology in my case, but I respect the idea of balance and some other Neutral tendencies (despite what I have previously said about Neutral, which still stands), or that I advocate Chaos, freedom, individualism, and personal power, but also a kind of balance. This balance, by the way, is not a reconciliation of order and chaos, but more to do with morality and dealing with the excess and evil that we sometimes led ourselves and our desires to, which even the Satanist would recognize.

I find a similar expression of this in my musical tastes. I like heavy metal (including traditional heavy metal), thrash metal, hard rock, but also some electronic stuff, mainly the techno in some video games, but there are good electronic songs not from video games (none of that modern dance or dubstep crap), especially if they have a certain feel. Because of this I like electronic and industrial rock because it’s like hard or heavy rock with the electronic feel. You could say something similar about industrial metal, another genre I like. I also like a bit of alternative if it’s good enough for me but that’s besides the point.

Going back to the actual point, by applying a kind of balance, we prevent ourselves from slipping into evil and corruption, losing too much control, and/or becoming major assholes. Temptation, lust, pride, rage, and all expressions of ego and desire are all OK, but we can often take these into the direction of evil or general douchebaggery. So it is up to us to as individuals to apply balance to prevent ourselves from potentially becoming assholes and to deliver ourselves from evil., and punish injustice, oppression, and evil when it happens. It’s also up to us to realize that, while power isn’t bad, it is important to be able to control that power, rather be controlled or blinded. If you are weak, then you will be corrupted by it.

I get the impression many people don’t seem to realize this. My sister has proven to me a disgusting and even terrifying example of anger, energy, fury, and rage that is directed or used in a morally reprehensible manner or attitude, and also of pride that is unfounded, misplaced, and allowed to cloud the mind. She shouts at her infant son a lot, and when she wants him asleep or away from one of the living rooms, she shouts at him, sometimes aggressively, and sometimes swears at him and tells him to shut up. Never does it occur to her when he wakes up to gently put him back to sleep, or employ any parenting that isn’t aggressive or designed only as an easy route to raising a child. That’s what you get for getting knocked up at age 20 and not having an abortion while it was still a mass of cells. She’s also generally mean-spirited and bossy, and won’t listen to anyone, not even our mother. Two days ago, I remember my sister shouting a lot at her son very frequently, and when our mom was approaching she barked aggressively at her, telling her to go away, and all the while never wanting to hear or accept the fact she’s just a horrible person and bad parent who got knocked up too young. We’re dealing with a young woman who will not listen to criticism and will not allow herself to realize she was wrong. Thus we have an example of someone who lets her pride obscure her and directs her rage and fury for all the wrong reasons.

That aside, ultimately, my philosophy is much the same as ever and I’m still a Satanist and Left Hand Path thinker, but there is no reason Left Hand Path philosophies can’t find some way to include balance in some way (though not necessarily between RHP and LHP ideals).

Lust

Yesterday it seems I was feeling so down that my mind turned to lustful and tender feelings. It was the day that my Lust side got the most attention, and its tender side too. The night before I even had some dreams pertaining to base desires, waiting without patience to be fulfilled.

By the way, don’t mind the pictures. I think you know what they’re supposed to illustrate on this post.

The first dream I recall is that I wondered naked through a field of grass, then a forest, then Satan-knows-where, along the way meeting plenty of beautiful girls, and eventually a particular girl, one who somehow stood out. Another dream I remember is me talking in conversation to some people, one of them a blondish-haired classmate I knew and often said “Hi” to, and someone asked something along the lines of “without God how will people feel secure and empowered?”, to which I answered “God is not the source of strength, but you yourself, from within”, after which the blondish-haired girl felt taken by my ideas and, in a serious and rather amorous tone, said she wanted to join me as my girlfriend (some kind of Satanic girlfriend). These dreams basically relate to base desire, but that doesn’t mean it’s nothing.

On bus trips, I would often lay eyes on a particularly pretty girl, and I feel kinda bummed knowing I can’t really do anything about it. Especially considering we’re both from different colleges. And at some point in the afternoon, while on a bus, I somehow briefly imagined being on a bus full of beautiful girls in their underwear. Yes, it is base, I freely admit to that, and it’s very much related to my own lustful tendencies, desires, and thoughts, but I think it’s more than just being a horny mutt, especially given the particular awareness and attention to it. I find this carnal desire and lust in the mind also has a very tender side, and I know that few people would associate lust with any kind of tenderness in thought. I find lust and love, and tender feelings to be very much related and linked, and not separate feelings. This is in contrast to the idea in Western civilization that love and lust are not only separate without even a speck of relation to each other, but that “lust” should be shunned and cast out while “love” is the only valid feeling.

You know what’s weird, I thought these feelings and started thinking more about lust and tenderness on a dull day with rather depressing weather. Maybe it’s just something that gets brought out in me to cheer myself up. Or maybe I was just still thinking about those dreams the night before, or maybe something else. But does it really matter?

Through all this I am trying to express not just my own very particular base, lustful thoughts on a particularly dull day, but also that lust has a tender side that is just as important as it’s beastly side. That lust is so intimately close to love, that they are almost, if not definitely in embrace.

The symbolic importance of the god Agni

I personally find symbolic importance in Agni, the Indian god of fire found in both Vedic and modern Hinduism. It’s not just that he’s a god of fire, but the fire is important.

To me, his flames mean power, desire, and will, and in a way, he has a link to freedom. He is also seen as the spark of life itself, perhaps this might fit into energy in general.  He apparently has eternal youth and immortality, probably because his fire is re-lit every day (really I’m surprised that flame ever needs to be re-lit, it’d make more sense that it be an eternal flame), thus he represents the value of youth and unquenchable spirit of life.

He also has a link with the gods Rudra (a.k.a. Shiva, my favourite god) and Indra, and interestingly both are rather energetic gods.