Tag Archives: Majere Pr.ODF

The Secret Life of a Satanist

The Secret Life of a Satanist: The Authorized Biography of Anton LaVey [Amazon, Abebooks, Bookshop, Local Library] by Blanche Barton, reviewed by Majere, Pr.ODF in the Bkwyrm’s Occult Book Reviews archive.

Barton The Secret Life of a Satanist

This is the “authorised” biography of the late Anton LaVey, as penned by his Mistress and High Priestess of the Church of Satan, Blanche Barton. It covers most of his life in considerable detail up until the founding of his Church in 1966, then moves on to examine his philosophies and observations of the world around him. Initially, after the publication of this book, quite a few voices arose to challenge the authencity of it’s contents – among them “Rolling Stone” magazine. Especially held in doubt is LaVey’s alleged “fling” with pre-fame days Marilyn Monroe (no biographies of Monroe have ever mentioned such a relationship). So therefore (also considering the obvious bias of the biographer in purporting the contents are pure fact) it is suggested that the reader keep tongue jammed firmly in cheek. Having said that, it is of considerable interest to those who are keen to read more about LaVey’s observations and ideals; in this respect, he is – as usual – forthright in a no-bullshit manner. Basically, it has to be admitted that whether you like or loathe LaVey, he doesn’t pull punches as to what he is and what he stands for – whether you find such agreeable or not. Includes photos. Recommended primarily for fans only, or those who are simply curious.

The Satanic Witch

The Satanic Witch [Amazon, Amazon (2nd Edition), Abebooks, Bookshop, Local Library] by Anton Szandor LaVey, introduction by Zeena LaVey, reviewed by Majere, Pr.ODF in the Bkwyrm’s Occult Book Reviews archive.

LaVey The Satanic Witch

The third volume of LaVey’s writings is aimed more directly at female readers, being a guide to his concept of Satanic seduction and “bitchcraft” techniques. As usual, it is written in his usual flamboyant style, and covers a broad range of subjects from make- up and fashion tips to methods of sexual manipulation through glamour (ie. “Lesser Magic”) . Also introduced is the “LaVey Personality Synthesizer”, used apparently to judge compatibility between the witch and her potential partners, and the volume also contains additional writings on magick – including methods to invoke familiars and send succubi to potential “victims”. Many have found some of LaVey’s suggestions in the book rather distasteful – the use of menstrual blood as a “perfume” being one regularly mentioned. And naturally, the material of the book is likely to offend many die-hard feminists and so-called “white witches”. Therefore, it is probably safe to say this book is only recommended for those with certain tastes – and if readers hold similar tastes to Anton LaVey himself, then no more need be said. Everyone else should look first before buying.

The Satanic Rituals

The Satanic Rituals: Companion to The Satanic Bible [Amazon, Abebooks, Bookshop, Local Library] by Anton Szandor LaVey, reviewed by Majere, Pr.ODF in the Bkwyrm’s Occult Book Reviews archive.

LaVey The Satanic Rituals

The Satanic Rituals is the “companion” text to LaVey’s “Satanic Bible”, and is an expansion of the material given in the last two sections of the latter. Included in the book are a variety of rituals and ceremonies derived from French, German, Middle-Eastern, Russian, and fictional sources – as well as Satanic baptisms, and including a version of the Black Mass. LaVey gives informative forewords to each ritual, explaining the origins and nature of the rites. Perhaps the only tenuous inclusion in the volume is a rite based on the Cthulhu Mythos of H.P Lovecraft, which may make HPL purists squirm (although LaVey reworked it from it’s first “incarnation” in a Derlethian-style Christianized context as penned by Temple Of Set founder, Michael Aquino). Overall, this is worthy of a read.

The Satanic Mass

The Satanic Mass [Amazon, Amazon, Abebooks, Local Library] by H T F Rhodes, reviewed by Majere, Pr.ODF in the Bkwyrm’s Occult Book Reviews archive.

Rhodes The Satanic Mass

This is perhaps one of the most acclaimed books on the history of the infamous “Black Mass”. The author provides an insightful and unbiased account of the origins of this ceremony from ancient pagan times through to it’s more corrupt modern incarnations. Perhaps one of the most interesting theories put forward by Rhodes is that the “Black Mass” was actually pagan in origin, rather than an invention of Christian fantasies – he suggests that the early pagans performed rites which denied the Christian god in favour of their own ancient cultural deities – rites that were later to be considered “Black Masses” by the Christian missionaries who were shocked at such “blasphemy”. Other topics also covered include the “heresy” of the Knights Templar and Cathars, the Guiborg Masses, and “diabolism” in Freemasonry. Essential reading.

The Satanic Bible

The Satanic Bible [Amazon, Abebooks, Bookshop, Local Library] by Anton Szandor LaVey, reviewed by Majere, Pr.ODF in the Bkwyrm’s Occult Book Reviews archive.

LaVey The Satanic Bible

Where to begin? This is undoubtably the most popular treatise on Satanism that has ever existed – but is it any good? The main problem with the “Satanic Bible” lies in it’s commercial singularity – such has aided more than a few Church of Satan spokesmen over the years in arrogantly claiming they are the only “true” upholders of Satanism since other groups hold no desire to come forth into the public eye with a marketable introduction. But the real issue, of course, is what the book contains. It is divided into four parts – the first section being primarily paraphrased from Arthur Desmond’s “Might Is Right” and revised by LaVey. It is basically a collection of elitist proclamations presented in “verses”. The second section could be easily said to be the primary part of the book, expounding the philosophies of Anton LaVey and his Church of Satan in relation to a variety of subjects, covering “God”, love, hate, life, death, sex, and “psychic vampirism”. It’s an interesting read to be certain, although the actual personal appeal of LaVey’s philosophies depends mainly on the attitude and tastes of the reader. It has been often said that the appeal of LaVey lies mainly in his accessibility – especially to teenagers, who no doubt form a large part of his following. The language used, and the rationale LaVey applies, made this book pretty much an assured bestseller – and indeed it has been so. In essence, LaVey’s brand of “Satanism” is mainly a blend of rational self-interest (with emphasis on hedonism), materialism, and anti-mainstream sentiments – mixed together with a magickal system that is itself a blend of historical, cultural, and psychodramatic ritual applications (also borrowing from Aleister Crowley and other modern magickians). All this is nicely “packaged” together under the symbol of that age-old Christian archetype – The Devil, Satan. The third and fourth sections relate to the aforementioned magickal system, although the rites presented are basic ceremonies designed for the purposes of invoking lust, compassion, or destruction. LaVey outlines the principles of his system with a fair deal of (accurate) logic and explains the nature of the tools applied. The book is concluded with his own revisions of John Dee’s “Enochian Keys”, which are basically much the same as the originals save for the inclusion of Satan. In summary, whether you love or hate LaVey, the book is certainly worth a read. For those seriously interested in the doctrines of the late “Black Pope” and the Church of Satan, it is an essential purchase. For anyone else, it is a good reference text on the basics of American Satanism as well as an interesting read in it’s own right. Decide for oneself.

The R’lyeh Text

Majere, Pr.ODF reviews The R’lyeh Text by Robert Turner, introduction by Colin Wilson; in the archive of Bkwyrm’s Occult Book Reviews.

Turner The R'lyeh Text

Another contributor has something to say about The R’lyeh Text:

This volume is a supplement to George Hays’ “Necronomicon: The Book Of Dead Names”, and is basically more of the same. Again, ignore the spurious “fragments” of garbage purporting to be pages from the Necronomicon and read the essays instead. If anything, they are even better than those in the previous volume – dealing with subjects incl. the Egyptian mysteries, Atlantis, creation myths, Lovecraft’s literary inspirations, and the tenuous Crowley-Lovecraft connection. Still, it’s certainly not to everyone’s tastes but as trash, it’s quite readable.

The New Satanists

The New Satanists by Linda Blood, reviewed by Majere, Pr.ODF, in the archive of Bkwyrm’s Occult Reviews.

Blood The New Satanists

This load of utter drivel was penned by a former member of the Temple of Set (and allegedly a “lover” of its founder, Michael Aquino). Basically, it is a propaganda piece full of the typical sour grapes backlash one would normally expect from someone who leaves their group on bad terms. It dredges up all sorts of inane conspiracy theories regarding modern Satanism, and also tries to drag Michael Aquino through the mud with a considerably sizable chunk of the book devoted to accusations leveled against him over an alleged paedophilia case in the eighties. Aquino apparently responded by suing the author for slander. But regardless if you like or hate Aquino- the rest of the book is a load of hysterical, cliched nonsense, and, as one might quite reasonably wonder: if Satanism is so utterly evil and repulsive as Blood claims, then why was she so immersed in it in the first place? As anyone in genuine Satanism knows – no-one is ever forced to join. This book isn’t even worth using as a doorstop.

The Devil’s Notebook

Majere, Pr. ODF, reviews The Devil’s Notebook by Anton Szandor LaVey in the Bkywrm archive.

LaVey The Devil's Notebook

The fourth volume of LaVey’s writings is apparently a collection of articles penned by him over twenty years, covering a wide variety of topics from “Goodguy Badges” through to “Toilet Seat Meditation”. The majority of the material is not as “esoteric” as his other writings (ie. “Satanic Bible”, “Satanic Rituals”, & “Satanic Witch”), but presented more in a humourous fashion, with LaVey’s usual brand of cynicism and wit. Some might groan at the (again repeated) sections dealing with LaVey’s personal “android” fetish and the now-cliched “Five-Point Pentagonal Revisionism”, but otherwise the book is a worthwhile read if only because LaVey does have a keen and logical perception of the world, regardless of whether you like his Satanism or not. To be honest, if you totally ignored the Satanic references, you’d still be left a rather interesting and readable book.

You can find this book at Amazon, Abebooks, and Powell’s.

The Black Book of Satan

Majere, Pr.ODF, reviews The Black Book of Satan by Christos Beest in the Bkwyrm archive.

This is one of the primary texts of Britain’s notorious Order of Nine Angles – perhaps the largest exponent of Satanism outside of the American/LaVeyan sphere of influence. The Black Book is a collection of Sinister rituals, ranging from initiation rites to the infamous Black Mass, including commentaries given on the nature of Black Magick and it’s applications. Although not for all tastes, and certainly controversial in some respects, it is perhaps one of the best alternatives available to the late Anton LaVey’s “Satanic Bible”. Not available for general retail – available by mail order only.

You can find this book at Amazon, Abebooks, and Powell’s

Raising Hell

Majere, Pr.ODF reviews Raising Hell: An A-Z of the Occult/Satanic Underworld by Michael Newton in the Bkwyrm archive.

Yet another by-the-numbers effort (or lack of such) that attempts to provide an all-round view of Satanism and alleged crimes committed in the name thereof. The content of this book is sadly lacking – much of the data long outdated, and it seems that the author has just thrown in any old thing into it that bears even the most tenuous link to “Satanism” or the “Occult” (eg. the Ku Klux Klan were neither!). This 400+ page volume has no practical value for anyone wishing to learn anything of significance about either Satanism or the occult – rather it is a collection of jumbled entries evidently trying to focus mainly on the more “shocking” elements of juvenile devil-worship and neo-pagan or esoteric societies (much of it inaccurate). Serious readers should avoid this turkey like the plague.

Find this book at Amazon, Abebooks, and Powell’s.