The Doctor is in…
This interview originally ran in MF Magazine #3, a Heavy Metal/Pop Culture mag we used to publish, and this was our last issue. It was also Dr. LaVey’s final interview—he did this interview via fax about a week after he did the interview which appeared in SECONDS.
The purpose was to publicize the re-release of Might is Right with Dr. LaVey’s introduction, an introduction long overdue and one that also put his critics in their place. (Click on the title and follow the links to purchase this edition.)
After meeting with Dr. LaVey, I left his home knowing that he truly had the power and magic others only talk about. He is a great inspiration to the whole Evil Now family and a genuine “Good Guy.”
Like him or not, millions of people know who Anton LaVey is, millions have read his books (yes, millions), and he stands as an important influence in modern society.
In the late 1960s, Anton LaVey brought forth an easily understandable doctrine of social Darwinism, and strong positive thinking (magic) to the growing mass of individuals sick of both hippieism and the stagnant morals of Christianity.
Aligning himself with personalities such as Sammy Davis, Jr. , Jayne Mansfield, Roman Polanski, Marilyn Monroe, Marilyn Manson, and Kenneth Anger, he brings Satanism to the American dinner table with the likes of Kraft macaroni & cheese, tuna helper, and The Simpsons.
This ability to stay at the forefront of pop culture keeps Doctor LaVey at icon status. He does not isolate himself from the future of his own movement, instead he embraces the youthfulness of this group, passing his torch on bit by bit to each person that reads his books. It is a rare individual that is capable of this.
The true leaders of the world are those that do not set themselves apart from the leaders of the future. Perhaps it is the megalomaniacalism of a lesser man that colors history with the most blood and ignorance. Now, take it away Anton...
Might is Right by Ragnar Redbeard is probably one of the most inflammatory books ever written, so who better to write an introduction? It was only natural that I excerpted a few pages of it for The Satanic Bible. The book has been so indelibly linked with me, it was felt that any new edition should have my name on it. I am pleased with the new printing. The afterward is befitting the impact the book had upon George Hawthorne, a reader already predisposed to that kind of presentation. The editor’s notes made my Ms. Lane astutely reveal aspects I had not considered. The possibility of two distinct authors, in light of my own observations, makes perfect sense, though I am not qualified to hazard a guess as to who the other might be.
2. What is your opinion of the militia groups today? Of the government, the president or politics in general?
It’s difficult for me to think of the government as acting in any other than a Machiavellian manner. When the timing is right, it will change accordingly. I am not quick to criticize the government or the President. They are whipping boys for the mealy-mouthed constituents who first vote them into power, then complain. As you can see, I have little respect for the herd. Like their gods, they create their governments according to their needs. All governments and their symbolic leaders are simply sounding boards for the temporal whims of their citizens. If people weren’t so easily manipulated, there’d be no exploitation.
The extreme right-wing, like the extreme left, I find to be a rather humorless lot given to blaming everyone but their own kind for the plight they crusade against. The same applies to racism. There would be no problem if the gentile white man had done something when he was the majority. Now, he’s trying to close the barn door after the horse runs away. That’s why I believe in stratification by allowing water to seek its own level. It’s something that can, and is, being done. I’m all for a police state; no messing around. There should be an armed guard on every street corner. The Israelis have the right idea: school bus drivers and MacDonalds managers carrying Uzis.
3. In Might Is Right there is a long passage about cannibalism, what do you know of Jack London’s South Sea travels?
Jack London was fascinated by anthropophagy and no doubt encountered it in his travels. During the time he wrote, there was heavy emphasis on “untrodden fields of anthropology.” In my time, I have had “long pig” on two occasions, so there is good reason to believe that London indulged himself in a late snack.
4. In the forward, you hint Of Jack London’s dark side. In regard to proof, you’ve been at the ruins of his home, can you tell us more about this?
Most of what I know of Jack London’s bestial side came by word of mouth by old-timers who either knew him or something of him. His sadistic impulses were notorious. It seems there has been a lot of backpedaling in that regard, probably to sanitize him for school children and ivory-tower “historians.” Strange as it seems, though; people seem to gloat and revel when the “dark side” of their heroes is revealed—that’s what keeps the tabloids in business. Those who need to keep their heroes pristine reveal much about themselves and their own lack of sexuality.
5. It has been nearly 30 years since The Satanic Bible was released; do you feel it’s message is as vital today as when it was first published? Why?
The message of The Satanic Bible is more pertinent today than when it was written because there are more people who are ready and willing to consider what it states.
6. What do you see as the future for the Church of Satan? Who will carry on as the leader after you? What kinds of people make up today’s Satanic Army?
The Church of Satan will be the pivotal point for an acknowledged belief system of the 21st century, incorporating significant numbers of people. After I’m gone, no single individual will serve to lead the organization. Rather, it will consist of a syndicated group of leaders presided over by a chairman. The “Satanic Army” is comprised of individuals, not cultists.
7. A common remark made by people is: if there is no such thing as Satan, why do you call it Satanism?
We call it “Satanism” because it’s about time the Devil was given his due. The Nine Satanic Statements pretty much spells it out. We want bold, but not pretentious disciples. By employing the “S” word, the timid and superstitiously frightened stay away. They have good reason to be scared, but not as they surmise.
8. What was your relationship with Sammy Davis, Jr.?
Sammy Davis, Jr. was a dear friend who often put himself on the line when it was professionally hazardous to do so. He brought many influential persons into the CoS, and shared his own personal life with me. He was a sensitive, articulate, and very Satanic individual—head and shoulders above most white folks.
9. Are there people who take things in The Satanic Bible too literally? What are the worst misconceptions?
There will always be those who misinterpret The Satanic Bible, although it’s presented with as little gobbledygook and Big Thinks as possible. It may be disagreeable, but there’s little to disagree with. If some clowns can misinterpret Alice in Wonderland and Mother Goose, my book doesn’t stand a chance.
10. What was you childhood like? Were your parents religious? Why did you run off with the circus when you were so young?
My childhood was that of a misfit, amply covered in two biographies by Burton Wolfe and Blanche Barton. My parents were in no way religious; to the point that my mother told me, albeit charitably, that “God” was just another name for “Nature.” I became a Satanist out of logic, rather than rebellion or desperation. At the age of sixteen I got in trouble with a girl and couldn’t join the French Foreign Legion, so I did the next best thing: sign on with a circus.
11. Have you ever considered writing a Satanic Warlock for men? Why or why not?
Yes; I had and still do consider doing a Satanic Warlock. Who knows?
12. When will there come a time that private Satanic schools exist for our children?
Private Satanic schools already exist for children, through home schooling by competent and responsible parents. You can’t get much more private than that.
13. What is a normal day in the life of Anton Szandor LaVey?
A normal day in the life of Anton Szandor LaVey consists of sleeping through it. After nightfall I get up and around and do whatever it is I do, which can be most anything. I have found that the best schedule is no schedule. As to my activities: one night I might shoot pool; the next, record an old tune; the next, watch some “B” movies; and try to run the CoS between times.
14. What is your opinion of “Satanic” bands today, especially metal bands?
Today’s Satanic bands are the vehicle of choice for millions of young people. If they encourage a study of real Satanism, I’m all for them. Now, there are many influential groups who know Satanism and aren’t afraid to espouse it—bands like King Diamond, The Electric Hellfire Club, Acheron, Marilyn Manson, Nine Inch Nails—the list is long. I have no use for the bands who take the Devil’s name, but are too chickenshit to play the Devil’s game. They’re usually too stupid to present any argument concerning Satanism. Instead, when put to the question, they cop out by answering: “Yeah—I was into that shit but not now. Don’t ask me about it because there’s no point in talking about it.” There are Satanic bands and there are “Satanic” bands.
15. Is it true you and King Diamond had a falling out? What happened?
King Diamond is an intelligent, talented, and well-spoken man. Any “falling-out” is wishful thinking. He is a Church of Satan official in good (bad?) standing.
16. What is your advice to the youth of the world? How, in your opinion, can they best prepare themselves for life?
My advice to the youth of the world is: Try to think for yourselves. You may have to put up with certain things, but you don’t have to like them. There will come a time when you will be able to vanquish them and enjoy the best life has to offer. You will have to be prepared, however, with logic and perspective, which I trust Satanism will provide.
17. Who was the better occultist, Aleister Crowley or A. E. Waite? Why do you feel this way? Do you have such a nemesis?
Crowley was the better magician. Waite was the better occultist. Personally, I have no nemeses. Some might like to flatter themselves, and I say more power to their big fat asses. Their track records speak for themselves, and where are they, what are they doing NOW?
18. How far has your research with androids come?
Research and development of androids is well under way, by means unrecognized. Virtual reality has become a useful adjunct.
19. In your book, The Satanic Rituals, you include a ritual for Cthulhu—does this mean you find some truth in the stories of H. P. Lovecraft?
H. P. Lovecraft has a place in Satanic literature because he innovated a style beyond that of Poe, Blackwood, James, etc. The fact that his stories have had enough dramatic impact to establish a cult—without even trying—is reason enough to recognize him as a sorcerer to be reckoned with. Besides, he had some pretty sound concepts.
20. How did you devise the salad dressing test?
I devised my Salad Dressing Test, drawing from my delineation of sadistic and masochistic personalities. I began with archetypal male/female extremes and took it from there. It really works.
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