Tomorrow begins year LV, Anno Satanas.
50 years ago this month of December, Anton Szandor LaVey published The Satanic Bible, fulfilling the promise of the 1966 founding of the Church of Satan by providing a text defining Satanism as a religion and philosophy. It was the first such perspective to be offered by a Satanist for fellow Satanists, and intentionally set before a global audience. He challenged existing spiritual doctrines with a resounding rejection, following in the footsteps of prior individualist thinkers, offering a potent blend of concept, metaphor, and pragmatic principles which continues to stir the minds of those who explore his ideas.
We who proudly call ourselves Satanists would not have this self-definition were it not for Magus LaVey. We honor his work, which he embarked upon with utmost dedication, in crafting words which voice something within us all. In succinct prose, conjuring vitriolic blasphemy, ironic observations, and uplifting paeans, he recognized those of us who glory in our own true nature as part of an “alien elite.” We are unique in our embracing of our “otherness” which strengthens our resistance to deadly social currents sweeping many into fearful collectivist, conformist doctrines. That tribalism, threatening to quash our range of possible destinies, we shall ever fiercely resist.
January of the new year marks the 15th anniversary of the publication of my introduction, “Opening The Adamantine Gates,” to welcome readers to Magus LaVey’s seminal work. I’m honored to have the privilege of being his successor, and a champion of his singular efforts towards advancing freedom of thought and of diversity of modes for self-realization. That I have and can continue to assist a growing succession of vital individuals to achieve their highest potential is most fulfilling. May we all continue ever forward, at whatever tempo suits our goals, capabilities and temperaments.
As the 21st Century plods along in its anguished trajectories, we’ve witnessed both triumphs and tragedies amongst those we hold dear—our colleagues, friends, and numerous cherished exceptional beings. We know you all will continue to move the world in the manner singular to each of you. We celebrate your varied victories and know that, if bloodied, your wounds will heal, for none of us accept defeat.
From our Black House—in what we call The Witchcraft District here in the Haunted Hudson Valley—to all of your lairs, High Priestess Nadramia and I offer our blessings to you indomitable folks who enkindle our excitement. May we enter the 2020s with clear recollections of the past and electrifying visions for our futures!
As is our tradition, we raise our glasses to our kind—Satanists, fellow secularists, freethinkers and all advocates of the best qualities of our species—marking the dawn of a New Year of health and prosperity to be filled with an abundance of delight:
“Here’s to champagne for our real friends, and real pain for our sham friends!”
Joy to the flesh—forever!
Shemhamforash! Hail Satan!
—Magus Peter H. Gilmore