I didn’t realize I would identify so much with the satanists, that’s for sure.
Not that I’d looked into it much. I don’t care much about what people believe, I mostly care when people form exclusionary clubs (which they often call church) that seek to divide people, shame people, judge people, and persecute those who don’t share their beliefs.
Turns out, satanists don’t worship satan. Most are atheists who don’t believe in a literal devil any more than they believe in a literal christ. But since atheism is just a term for what you aren’t, they’ve chosen satanism to represent their feelings, which are not so much anti-christ as post-christ. The satanic temple’s 7 tenets include compassion, empathy, respect, accountability, and science, all of which I find easier to endorse than an overemphasis on not coveting your neighbour’s crap and putting murder and swearing on equal footing in terms of badness.
Practically, the satanic temple chapters exist mostly in opposition to the christians encroaching on the American way of life. Logically we all know the importance of the separation of church and state. America was founded on the freedom of religion as people who were persecuted fled to build a country on their own terms. Colonial founders and founding fathers baked freedom of religion right into the constitution – in fact, it’s in the first amendment. And yet there are references to a christian god on American currency, in the country’s motto, even in the pledge of allegiance. And that’s particularly interesting because as mentioned, separation of church and state was pretty important to the founding fathers. Of course, there was no mention of god in the first version of the pledge, in 1892, and none in the next 3 revisions over the course of 60 odd years. It was only in 1954 that god suddenly popped up where god does not belong, in a time of increasing evangelicism.
So yeah. That’s how Netflix turned me on to satanism. They’re not trying to convert christians and they’re certainly not devil worshipers. If church and state cannot be separated, all they’re asking is that everyone be treated equally. If a school or courtroom or city hall has christian iconography, it needs to consider all other religions too – and there are BUNCHES of them represented in the American population. The first amendment forbids Congress from promoting one region over others. That’s a basic American value. Apparently. America, what have you come to when the satanists are the level-headed ones?