Thursday, October 2, 2014

Mr. Satan

"The biggest lie Satan can sell you is that he doesn't exist!"

I know you don't have to sit through LDS meetings to hear this frightening warning. No matter where you hear it, the point is clear: you had better not stop believing in Satan. That muthafuckahz the real thing! And he's scary as shit!

The horns are maybe more symbolic than literal, it's true, but let's just take a moment to recognize that many, many people have had visions of a Satan with horns and wings. They're tradition at this point, and Lord knows we Mormons love tradition.

And the folks who love Satan most really prefer this more traditional approach.

Now consider for just a moment how badly Satan wants you for himself.

Terrifying! Of course, Mormons know better than the Church of Satan (those satanist assholes have totally been deceived), they know he doesn't look like a goat or have horns or wings. He looks like us, for he is our spirit brother born of our Heavenly Parents. Some say he looks a bit like Barack Obama. Others think he's white.

More important than what our fallen brother looks like is what he wants. Satan wants you to suffer, brothers and sisters. He wants you to be fucking miserable for all eternity because that's exactly the kind of heartless, bodiless bastard he is (that's right, he was too rebellious to be given a body). He tempts and torments you at all times setting traps and waiting for you to fall into sin. I don't even like to think about his evil ways.

"Taste my happiness, y'all mothafuckahz! We got this!"

Good thing other people have thought about it for me. Take Bible scholars for example. These dudes have looked very carefully at the use of the Hebrew word satan (שָּׂטָן), which means "adversary", to understand where Satan comes from. As it turns out satan is a term that describes a variety of human and celestial beings who in some way create opposition for someone else. The Devil (meaning  "slanderer"), Great Lucifer the Fallen, the Father of All Lies, doesn't come onto the scene until hundreds of years later on in the tradition of satans when the Hebrew tradition was able to absorb more of the dualism from surrounding religious traditions, at which point Satan, Yahweh's mortal enemy, was born into the world. Here's a brief explanation in video form:

So where does this leave us with regards to a scary bogeyman named Satan? Do we trust Joseph Smith's tweaking of the Christian tradition or do we recognize the tradition has untenable origins and that we've been caught up in one of the longest running ghost stories on earth today?

Pay attention to how frequently our prophets, seers and revelators use the "because Satan" argument. Why should we find that argument convincing?

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