"Life is the great indulgence--Death, the great abstinence" and "Do what thou wilt, so long as no undeserving person is harmed." These statements, which illustrate the very basis of Satanism, are, I feel, blatantly contradicted (in a certain Church of Satan pamphlet) by saying that "no true Satanist uses mind-altering drugs."
To paraphrase LaVey in The Satanic Bible, you should be a master of the things you do, as opposed to mastered by them. Therefore, if a Satanist is master of the drugs they are using, his actions should indeed be falling within the realm of Satanic doctrine. A person would be doing what he wants to, indulging in "the great indulgence." As long as one's actions aren't hurting anyone else, there shouldn't be anything wrong with this. Certainly some Satanists drink alcohol, which is a "mind-altering drug," even though it is legal. Which, I suppose, could make it acceptable since Satanists should function within the boundaries of society and obey "those laws established for the common good." Yet not all other "mind-altering" substances are illegal. One can legally obtain nitrous oxide, morning glory seeds (which contain lysergic acid amide, a close relative of LSD), Yohimbe capsules, herbal ecstacy, and many others. So would these be "Satanically acceptable?"
Not all drugs work by allowing one to "escape from reality." Not all drugs are "crutches." Certainly, a full-fledged junkie who thinks about nothing but heroin could not be a functioning Satanist, but only because he is mastered by, not master of, his habits. I feel that drugs within a Satanic society should be treated like any other "natural high" that almost any satanist regularly indulges in: like sex, fast cars, music, food, and numerous other "physical, mental, and emotional gratifications."
However, I completely understand why the COS and Satanists in general do not want to be associated with drugs. Drug use, like Satanism, is extremely misunderstood by the public. The media portrays only hopeless, mindless drug addicts, not someone who occasionally passes around a joint. Thus the media promotes the idea that all drug users are drug abusers, and are immediately recognizable by their appearance alon, etc. Yet they don't show or mention all the doctors, lawyers, teachers, and policemen that do drugs occasionally and yet are still fully functioning members of society. Even sigmund Freud glorified drug use, and look at all the things he contributed to society. Similarly, Satanism is portrayed by the media in a grim and unrealistic manner, showing Satanists as devil-worshipping, child-molesting murderers.
In conclusion, poeple who are ruled by their drug habits are not true Satanists for the same reason that people who are ruled by their sex lives are not true Satanists. Because their is a distinction between use and abuse, indulgence and obsession.
Satanists are their own gods, and create their own realities. In doing so, it would only make sense that they also make their own rules. As "The Great Beast" Aleister Crowley once said, "There is no Law Beyond 'Do What Thou Wilt.'" I can't argue with that.--amy, in a letter to a cos rev.
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