Lucien Greaves speaking at the 2015 American Atheists National Convention in Memphis, TN

Lucien Greaves speaking at the 2015 American Atheists National Convention in Memphis, TN

Lucien Greaves speaks to American Atheists about the core concept of an “atheistic religion”, the idea that supernaturalism can be separated from religion, and the idea of “deeply held beliefs” in an atheistic framework.

He quotes at length his answer about the use of Satan as a symbol that he gave in a previous interview with Vice:

VICE: Is the Satanic Temple a satanic, or a satirical group?

Lucien: That is a common question. I say why can’t it be both? We are coming from a solid philosophy that we absolutely believe in and adhere to. This is Satanism, and to us it couldn’t be called anything other than Satanism. However, our metaphor of Satan is a literary construct inspired by authors such as Anatole France and Milton—a rebel angel defiant of autocratic structure and concerned with the material world. Satanism as a rejection of superstitious supernaturalism. This Satan, of course, bears no resemblance to the embodiment of all cruelty, suffering, and negativity believed in by some apocalyptic segments of Judeo-Christian culture. The word “Satan” has no inherent value. If one acts with compassion in the name of Satan, one has still acted with compassion. Our very presence as civic-minded socially responsible Satanists serves to satirize the ludicrous superstitious fears that the word “Satan” tends to evoke.

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