Sep 18, 2014

Satanic Temple Plans to Open 15 Chapters Nationwide

For so many years, these groups, like roaches, hid in the darkness.  Now, they feel their time has come, and they are scurrying to find their place in the light.  And this is only the beginning. 

Head of Detroit chapter claims group does not "worship" Satan.

The Satanic Temple says it espouses a Satan who is not the same Biblical "Father of Lies" who tempted Christ in the wilderness.

"Satan, to us, is not a deity or entity, but rather a symbol of the ultimate revolutionary iconoclast exemplified by Milton, William Blake and Anatole France," said Jex Blackmore, a leader of the Satanic Temple's new Detroit chapter and a member of the organization's executive ministry team.

Blackmore told Aleteia that her group's brand of Satanism—more comparable to a rationalist humanist philosophy than a mystical religionprovides her co-religionists with a sense of identity, community, custom and shared values.

"Our group includes mothers and fathers, veterans, musicians, professors, entrepreneurs and students," Blackmore said. "We represent all different walks of life."

The Satanic Temple has made headlines in recent months for its provocative efforts to organize a "black mass" at Harvard University and for trying to erect a statue of Baphometa bearded, goat-headed pagan deityin Oklahoma City as a countermeasure against Christians installing the Ten Commandments at the state capitol.

It it not affiliated, however, with another satanic group, the Dakhma of Angra Mainya, which is performing a black mass Sept. 21 at the Oklahoma City Civic Center,

The controversial organization has also protested informed consent laws for women seeking abortions, held a "pink mass" ritual which purports to turn someone gay in the afterlife at the grave of  the late Westboro Baptist Church founder Fred Phelps Jr.'s mother, and has offered to officiate at same-sex wedding ceremonies in Michigan, with the goal of overturning that state's laws that currently define marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

Over the next few weeks, the Satanic Temple plans to open 15 new chapters across the United States, as well as several internationally. The organization boasts more than 10,000 online members, which includes teens and people in their late 60s.

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