I appreciate your question, it allows me to address a few thing about myself , my blog, and my practice. But first let me address a bit of your question.
"Satanism" just like Christianity, is a term that means many things to many people. From the mindset of the average person, who has no interest in the occult, Satanism is believed to be the literal worship of Satan, Lucifer, or the Devil. When hearing "Satanism", the average person tends to believe that the Satanist has violent tendencies, a hatred towards humanity, creates harm for the sake of harm, and has no concern for the welfare of others. It is also commonly believed that Satanism is devised only as an Anti-Christian pursuit. Though in some cases all of what I have described may be applied to a Satanist, this is NOT an accurate description of most, or all, Satanists.
There are many kinds of Satanists. Some literally worship Satan, Lucifer, the Devil. To make thinks more confusing, Satan, Lucifer, and the Devil are often viewed as very different figures, each name having a different connotation to different people. Many do not actually worship these figures, or worship anything at all for that matter, but instead see these characters, their meaning, and mythology, as allegorical or emblematic of the human experience.
There may be a strong Anti-Christian sentiment held by those who identify as Satanists, or not. In fact, some individuals who’s practices might be labeled as ‘Satanic’ actually honor the figure of Christ with an equal amount of respect as they do Satan or Lucifer. Many of these individuals see the Bible and Abrahamic Mythology as being allegorical and some are dual-observant, meaning that they practice various forms of witchcraft, or satanism, whilst also honoring or participating in the activities of the church.
Some Satanists simply adopt the label as a strong rebellion against conformity, established systems of imposed moral law, and organized religion. Others adopt the label because they believe in the raising, self reliance, evolution, and apotheosis (deification) of the individual human, versus what they view as the adherence to a dogmatic and oppressive forms of religion.
Just as there are many forms of Christianity, there are also many forms and traditions of Satanism. As with most things, the reasoning, morality, and motivations associated with its practice varies from one person to the next. And I’ll tell you from my experience, that many (but certainly not all) of the people who would be described as ‘Satanist’ by the average observer are people who have excellent hearts, care for their friends and families, and who actually want the best for themselves and for humanity.
It should be mentioned that there are also many practices such as those of various Luciferians, Witches, and Yezidis that are considered by outsiders, to be forms of Satanism. However, most of these practitioners would not describe what they do as such.
So, that all said. I’d like to take the opportunity to make a few points about myself and my practice.
I am not a Satanist.
Not that I have any issue with Satanists. But I don’t worship, or work with ‘Satan’. Either as an actual spiritual entity, or as a mythological emblematic concept.
Though there are some philosophical concepts which fall under the umbrella of Satainsm that I find agreeable. Most of these concepts are also found elsewhere in the larger realm of occultism and are not exclusive to Satanism.
I have however, used and worked with terms and concepts such as Lucifer. As a reference to the light-bringer. The one who gifts humanity with wisdom and ‘illumination’.
I also have no issue with the term Devil. This was a term which was often applied to describe the Gods and Spirits of indigenous peoples when Christians historically imposed there religious beliefs upon them. It was, and is still, often applied back to these spirits in a loving, yet defiant way today. There are those who practice Witchcraft and use the term ‘Devil’ as a descriptor for the Horned One for this reason.
Within my practice I utilize a fair amount of infernal and darker imagery. This is because, quite honestly, it suits me well and I find it both symbolically meaningful and spiritually/magically effective for me.
Additionally, though many of the symbols, tools, and iconography that I utilize may appear as Satanic to the unaware, they are, in fact, not.
Skulls, Bones, Baphomet, and other imagery that may be seen as darker is not inherently ‘evil’. It is people’s fear of the darker side of life which causes them to label it as such. People fear facing their demons, they fear death, they fear the primal side of humanity, and in turn they hide it away, shun it and repress it. Unfortunately this often allows it to fester within them, like an untended to infection, until it eventually erupts in unhealthy ways.
On a deep philosophical and aesthetic level I connect to darker imagery and power. It is where I often find comfort, inspiration, and greater meaning.
However, though I prefer it, I do not only live in the dark. I believe, in the realm of the spiritual, it is important to explore the light as well as the dark. To find a semblance of balance between the Supernal and Infernal.
Given some of the aspects of my personal philosophy and practices, some might consider me to be of the Left Hand Path. I am alright with this assumption as it does apply in several ways. However, I tend to consider myself as spiritually ambidextrous.
As you said, you lack knowledge in some of these areas. So I apologize if some of the terminology I used was unfamiliar to you. I tried to choose my terminology to best express my answer and thoughts concerning this to both you, and to my other followers. I hope this somewhat answered your question.
In Tenebrous, Lux!
i worked with Lucifer as a predominant form of The Adversary, who was my spiritual focus for probably 5 years, before i found Ahriman… He’s the One now… and i walk less in the light… but otherwise, well said..