THE SHAME OF THE NEW WITCH CULT
By Anton LaVey
The Cloven Hoof, March V/1970
Many are those who study the art of the children of darkness, who call themselves by the names of witch and warlock, who gaze at crystals, read the tarot, divine by divers means, and seek success through paths of magic. All these play at the Devil’s game and take the Devil’s tools in their quest for crumbs of power.
In the name of all who suffered and died as the agents of the Devil in ages past, the present band of heretics—those who would deny the Devil, yet play His game—must be called to task. Greater is their folly than the strictest Protestant, Catholic, Jew, or Buddhist. More cowardly are they than the whining informer who plucked at the sleeve of the inquisitor. More flagrant is their hypocrisy than he who reads pornography “in order to warn others.”
These are the pursuers of dubious power, the searchers for riches, the buyers of “hidden secrets,” the purchasers of “short cuts,” the sniveling army of the have-nots who feel themselves deserving of the bounties of life but have found no miracles in the churches in which they prayed.
So now we see them as they swarm about us, purchasing the journals of deceit, the source-books of diabolical supplies, the catalogues of the magical art. They read, and read, and contemplate, and read some more. They study the rites of Lucifer, and the mysteries of creation and the spells and charms, and they call themselves by innocuous names. And they play at the games which caused our forebears to be tortured as agents of Satan.
And what do they do, now that it is safe and clear to use His Great Infernal Name? They deny him! They have the opportunity to take up the very creed of defamation which killed their brothers and sisters of the past and cast that creed before the world in triumphal mockery of its age of unreason. But no—they do not thrust the bifid barb of Satan aloft and shout: “He has triumphed! Rege Satanas!” His art and works which brought men to the rack and thumbscrew, can now be learned in safety. But no . . . He is denied. Denied by those who cry up His art and ply His work.
In the safety of their flimsy dens they say the calls. In the warmth of their parlors they push their planchettes and read the cards and cast the runes and call forth the dead and even wear the horns. Seldom in these places is Satan found. For these are the frightened mystics of the new Christianity, and the trembling cowards scurry ’round the openings to the Grottoes of Hell. And like vermin, they furtively nibble upon the newly-emerged Devil-wisdom. Little do they realize the folly of their cowardice.
Ages come and ages go, and cycles reverse themselves with the wondrous periodicity that only nature can sustain, and now we walk upon the upper world.
Those who play the game of self-denial in its traditionally simplistic forms, and showed themselves consistent in their Christ-mongering can find absolution from their sins within our fold.
But those who play the Devil’s Game yet cloak themselves in RIGHTEOUSNESS besmirch the names of those who bore the mark of brand and tongs and gazed upon their dead and dying with curses softly spoken. Knew they not, the tortured, that one day men would ply the Devil’s handiwork; the work that was grounds for rack and candle.
Knew they not, the Knights of the Temple, that one day men would fashion spells in the clear moonlight, free from the snare of the heretic-hook; yet deny and denounce the benediction of Satan!
The tongs have gathered rust, and the racks snarl as they turn from lack of oiling. The morningstars have dust between their spikes and the iron maiden is cold and yearning for a lover to embrace.
The ghosts of the Devil-bought will take up the instruments of their destruction and march forth. And their prey will be those scavengers of the arts which once meant Devil-wisdom, and to this day remain as such. Let it be known that every man who delves into the arts of darkness must give the Devil and His children the due their years of infamy deserve. Satan’s Name will not be denied!
Let no man shun or mock His Name who plays His winning game or despair, depletion, and destruction await!