A group of Satanists have raised nearly 30,000 dollars to erect a statue of Satan on Capitol grounds in Oklahoma. The design of the monument depicts a seated Prince of Darkness with the cut torso of a regular gym goer, topped by a goat’s head bearing a hefty set of curved horns. The right hand of Satan is raised with two fingers extended toward the sky, one finger short of the Boy Scout sign. In the photos of the statue-in-progress released by The Satanic Temple of New York, the organization behind this initiative, Satan is surrounded by small, conventionally-depicted human children, gazing at him in awe.

Oklahoma — up until now known for churning out a regular crop of corn-fed country singers, along with a regular crop of corn — is not exactly famous for being a hotbed of Satanism. So why locate a monument honoring Satan on Capitol grounds? A few years ago a statue of the Ten Commandments was erected on these same grounds thanks to a newly-minted state law allowing for the display of religious symbols on public property, as long as the funds for erecting these symbols is paid for by private donors. The Ten Commandments monument was erected, funded by the family of a Republican state representative.

Members of The Satanic Temple of New York reason that, if a statue of the Ten Commandments can be displayed on Capitol grounds in Oklahoma, then why not a statue dedicated to Satanism? Why not, indeed? Well, for starters, there is really no such thing as satanism in any organized, religious sense. The members of The Satanic Temple of New York admit as much when trying to carve out a place in the public imagination, laying claim to a very shaky history cobbling together folklore and disparate occult practice. By their own reckoning, any human expression of belief — or non-belief — outside of religious orthodoxy falls under the very broad umbrella of the precepts of the Temple of Satan, which is unsupportable on its face, and the very reason Christians shouldn’t bother with responding to the campaign to erect a monument to Satan.

When it comes to Satan, or the idea of Satan, there is nothing to honor, nothing to praise, nothing to commemorate, unless it’s the idea of non-Christian belief, which just so happens to be commemorated already by nearly every single aspect of human society.

If Christians want to resist monuments to Satan, all we have to do is look around us to see examples of all that the anti-God contingent represents. Or, more to the point, look inside ourselves to see our own anti-God practice. We don’t need self proclaimed satanists to tell us what we believe in our hearts to be true: living life apart from God is an exercise in futility. Erecting monuments to a life lived apart from God is more of the same.


6 Comments

    1. Well, oil-fed country singers just didn’t have the same ring to it. But I’m glad for the clarification from an Oklahoman. At least I didn’t mention the Broadway musical, so maybe that offsets the corn thing…

  1. Wonder how long it will take for them to work their way around to animal sacrifice and all the other culturally enriched things that pagan believers do? Lupercaila, Samhain and Beltain will be fun to watch and we’ll know exactly where everyone stands, won’t we?

  2. Your point about the lack of coherence in any purported satanist movement is illustrated well in the laughable composition of the statue itself. Is it Pagan mythology meets the Magic School bus: Gather round children and head the teachings of the half-naked goat-headed shaman-thing? The piece displays the kind of earnest literalism that you might expect to see in the art of say the next campaign by the FDA to get kids to eat more broccoli.

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