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The Satanic Temple

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Why? For the glory
of Satan of course!

Satanism
100px
God's own scapegoat
A devilish plan

The Satanic Temple is a group of Satanists that are active with social and political issues surrounding religious freedom, including their current mission to get a statue of Satan erected outside the Oklahoma state capitol building.

The Satanic Temple is an atheistic organization, and does not believe in a literal Satan, though some of its members are theistic Satanists. This has been brought up in the assessment of whether or not they actually are a religion, and they have responded by stating that this belief is outdated and ignorant, saying that to define religion as supernatural is to give the enemy free license to label as they please.[citation needed]

Tenets[edit]

They have a set of seven fundamental tenets founded on ideas of secular humanism, freedom and reason and are listed below.[1]

One should strive to act with compassion and empathy towards all creatures in accordance with reason.

The struggle for justice is an ongoing and necessary pursuit that should prevail over laws and institutions.

One's body is inviolable, subject to one's own will alone.

The freedoms of others should be respected, including the freedom to offend.

To willfully and unjustly encroach upon the freedoms of another is to forgo your own.

Beliefs should conform to our best scientific understanding of the world. We should take care never to distort scientific facts to fit our beliefs.

People are fallible. If we make a mistake, we should do our best to rectify it and resolve any harm that may have been caused.

Every tenet is a guiding principle designed to inspire nobility in action and thought.

The spirit of compassion, wisdom, and justice should always prevail over the written or spoken word.

(Sounds a few steps ahead of LaVeyan Satanism.)

Projects[edit]

After-school Satan Clubs[edit]

The Satanic Temple has launched Satanic after school clubs.

It's important that children be given an opportunity to realize that the evangelical materials now creeping into their schools are representative of but one religious opinion amongst many. While the Good News Clubs focus on indoctrination, instilling them with a fear of Hell and God's wrath, After School Satan Clubs will focus on free inquiry and rationalism, the scientific basis for which we know what we know about the world around us. We prefer to give children an appreciation of the natural wonders surrounding them, not a fear of everlasting other-worldly horrors.
[2]

Satan clubs will only be in areas and schools where there are already after school Bible study groups. Schools cannot discriminate by banning Satan clubs while allowing Bible study, or they will risk legal action over the First Amendment.[3] A legal expert for Liberty Counsel said Satan Clubs have a First Amendment right to exist, but later threatened to sue. The Satanic Temple, by contrast, maintains that, without studying the curriculum of the Satan Clubs, the Liberty Counsel's actions are premature.[4] According to Hemant Mehta, the Liberty Counsel has misrepresented the Satan clubs.[5] The Satan clubs are looking for donations.[6] Legal action is considered in one Georgian district because the authorities have ignored repeated requests to start a Satan Club.[7] Future developments could be interesting. A district in Washington state decided they have to allow the Satan clubs.[8] The first After School Satan Club has opened in Portland, Oregon in mid-November 2016 with Christian protesters outside.[9] A second has opened in Utah and more are promised. [10]

Baphomet statue[edit]

The Satanic Temple is best known in the media for its publicity stunts done in the interest of protecting church-state separation, in a manner similar to Pastafarianism. They're responsible for a number of the antics such as attempts to have a statue of Baphomet displayed wherever Christian symbols are shown on government property.[11] As a result, they have become quite popular with the atheist community. Their spokesperson, Lucien Greaves (real name Doug Mesner) has appeared on shows like The Friendly Atheist podcast and others.[12]

Invocations[edit]

In early 2016, the Satanic Temple wanted to give an invocation at the city council of Phoenix, Arizona. Some councilors wanted only a rota of council-approved clergy to give invocations. The Freedom From Religion Foundation planned legal action if the First Amendment was breached.[13] Phoenix chose a moment of silence instead, but legal action was threatened from Christians who wanted explicitly Christian prayer in government.[14][15]

Protect children project[edit]

The Satanic Temple has started a campaign against corporal punishment in American schools; this is apparently legal in nineteen states with 110,000 children being beaten per year.[16]

The campaign uses an argument based on the first amendment's guarantee of freedom of religion. The Satanic Temple argues that corporal punishment violates the Satanic Temple's belief in a inviolable body and intends to argue on these grounds for anyone who registers for them.[17].

References[edit]