The solstice tide is upon us and, as kin to the rest of Earth’s species, we feel at one with the cycling of the seasons on this gloriously beautiful planet that is our home. Thus, celebration of that turning wheel comes naturally to us.
Some Satanists might feel alienated by parts of the holiday hubbub promoting Christianity, yet obviously heathen trappings have long been the dominant décor. Recall that the Christians lifted this holiday from the pagans, pasting their pallid savior over more robust traditions which have never been vanquished. Jolly Santa Claus, who has come to signify wish fulfillment, is a combination of Dionysos and Silenus from Greek myths. And let us not forget that the ever-carnal Romans celebrated the orgiastic Saturnalia at this time of year.
In practice, the Nazarene has little place in most of the general public’s celebrations of this season—and we like it that way. Who wants to think of that mangy manger-baby on the way to his zombie destiny when it is far more delightful to simply celebrate the wonders of Nature with friends and family? Festive gatherings with sumptuous food and drink have historically been employed in the Northern Hemisphere at this time of year to mark the now lengthening days. The Winter’s chill is understood to be transitory, with the fecund Spring to come—certainly a proper reason to offer “Joy to all!”
I join with all who would revel in marking the Yule holiday season by enjoying the fullness of our lives in the company of people whom we cherish. We will often be the only ones who know the origins of these widely-embraced festal traditions. It might surprise some to know that many Satanists have decorated trees with blazing lights and ornaments that range from the diabolical to icons of all they consider to be fun. That Germanic devil Krampus has also charmed many of us—his purpose to mete out justice is one we consider fundamental—so his imagery has been embraced with gusto.
In the holiday spirit of presenting gifts to those who have enriched our lives, I’m offering PDF file downloads of my own pieces of fiction. People who’ve admired my philosophical writings have asked whether fiction has been one of my indulgences, and so now they can see my dabblings with an older piece as well as a newer one for your reading pleasure. More will be uploaded in time.
By the way, the above image by master cartoonist Josh Latta (commissioned by M.C.C.—many thanks!) depicts myself and my wife, Magistra Peggy Nadramia, as Mr. & Mrs. Satan Claus, based on an incident I recounted to Helle Magazine in their article “POGONOPHILIA.” Our Chow Chow, Contessa Bella Lugosi, plays her part as a stand-in for the legendary Rudolf, the ninth reindeer.
So, from our happy lair in the haunted Hudson Valley, we offer a “Superlative Solstice” to all Satanists and fellow secularists around the globe for a time filled with joy in abundance!
—Magus Peter H. Gilmore