While the Church of Satan
encourages individuality and the gratification of desires, it does not suggest that all actions are acceptable. The Nine Satanic Sins, published by Anton LaVey in 1987, target nine characteristics Satanists should avoid. Here they are, along with my own explanations.
1. StupidityStupid people do not get ahead in this world. Satanists strive to keep themselves informed and to not be fooled by others who seek to manipulate and use them.
2. PretentiousnessTaking pride in one’s achievements is encouraged in Satanism. However, one should only take credit for one’s own accomplishments. Making empty claims about yourself is not only obnoxious but also potentially dangerous, leading to sin No. 4, self-deceit.
3. SolipsismSatanists use this term to refer to the presumption many people make that other people think, act and have the same desires as themselves. It’s important to remember that everyone is an individual with his own individual goals and plans. To expect someone to treat you as you treat him is foolish. Instead, Satanists encourages you to treat people as they treat you. You should always deal with the reality of the situation rather than expectations.
4. Self-DeceitSatanists deal with the world as it is. Convincing yourself of untruths because they are more comfortable is no less problematic than letting someone else deceive you.
5. Herd ConformitySatanism exalts the power of the individual. Western culture encourages people to go with the flow, and to believe and do things simply because the wider community is doing such. Satanists attempt to avoid such behavior, following the herd only if it makes logical sense and suits one’s own needs.
6. Lack of PerspectiveRemain aware of both the big and small pictures, never sacrificing one for the other. Remember your own important place in things, and don’t be overwhelmed with the viewpoints of the herd. On the flipside, we do live in a world larger than ourselves. Always keep an eye on the big picture and how you can fit yourself into it.
7. Forgetful of Past OrthodoxiesSociety is constantly taking old ideas and repackaging them as new, original ideas. Do not be fooled by such offerings.
8. Counterproductive PrideIf it works, use it. You should never be embarrassed of your own accomplishments. However, if pride is getting in the way of getting things done with other people, you should set it aside until such time as it becomes constructive again.
9. Lack of AestheticsBeauty and balance are two things Satanists strive for. This is particularly true in magical practices but can be extended to the rest of one’s life as well. Avoid following that which society dictates is beautiful and learn to identify true beauty, whether or not others recognize it.