What am I as a Satanist?
Am I just a Facebook Meme Machine? Constantly looking for the next best snarky blasphemy? Or am I more than that?
Catholics believe that the path to Heaven is paved with faith and good works. When I was growing up that made perfect sense to me. Believing in God and helping out my neighbor or my community seemed far more in line with Jesus’ teachings than the other, as my uncle liked to call them, “dietary versions of Catholicism.”
My “faith” in God was short lived and, while my uncle’s feelings for the other denominations became irrelevant, I was still left with an undeniable compassion for other people. All people. No matter their identity, pigmentation, sexuality, political leanings, economic status, religion, or any other label that could be used to marginalize folks.
As I have become older (and hopefully wiser) I strive to step outside my own experience and privilege when speaking about social justice and the injustices faced by other’d folks. I try to be empathetic and sympathetic in silence when other people are talking about oppression that I have never experienced. I want to be compassionate but not because I want validation for compassion. So I listen, I listen some more, and then I ask how I can be of service. At the very least I listen, learn, and set out to be as knowledgeable as possible on the subject. But what am I going to do with that knowledge? It’s pretty cute that I know about the rampant permeation of rape culture but what do I do after that? I can write a blog post about my own experiences and let people know I’m on their side but does that commentary alone help the fight for social justice? I don’t think so. And I want to change that.
The fight for social justice isn’t over until the other’d are no longer others. The fight for social justice isn’t over until the people experiencing injustice stop having that experience. For me, being a Satanist shouldn’t be an insular experience. I feel I should strive to hold the first tenet closely and be cognizant of compassion requiring action. “I should do something” should turn into “I’m doing something”. I can utilize my newly found identity in Satanism as fuel for my compassion. I refuse to be complacent in a room full of echos. I will figure out how to be of use in this, the armpit of the Midwest. I definitely don’t want my feelings of enlightenment and my constant search for more knowledge to not be of use. And I definitely don’t want my interpretation of modern Satanism and my identity within Satanism to be dietary.