Marketing, The Last Of The Black Arts – The most effective yet underrated black magician is a person who you’ll never ever see credited in occult circles, yet he was, and still is truly a force of nature. Edward Bernays, Sigmund Freud’s nephew studied the mind, not for the minds sake, he studied for profit and ultimately the corporation’s sake. Bernays used his magic to stimulate consumption through impulsive indulgence, to sell canned spaghetti, cigarettes, soda-pop and war, for his own amusement and prosperity… some would say Bernays is the evilest of all evil doers. He definitely trumps Crowley, Levi and LaVey as far as manipulation of the mind goes, Edward Bernays changed the way humanity as a whole thinks.
I’ve studied Bernays, and at times almost feel bad about using his black magic teachings and marketing techniques for fun and profit… especially when helping to spark a campaign that turns toxic, that creates monsters, such as I have done with The Satanic Temple. The organization started off as a filmmaker’s parody to lampoon outdated politics and to produce a future documentary, the group is now working to become a full fledged religion.
First, I should give a disclaimer or two…
I’ve always seen The Church of Satan and Satanism, as defined by Anton Szandor LaVey, as a political and artistic movement, much like the Yippies, The American Indian Movement or The Black Panthers of the same era. I became a friend of Anton LaVey and was the last person he ordained a minister in The Church of Satan, as a militant metal head, an unabashed and aggressive atheist, and an underground artist, I considered the title LaVey bestowed upon me as a sort of Academy Award in my field of work and protest, the top prize, a grand champion blue-ribbon endorsement of living life to the fullest.
Disclaimer number two…
Spectacle Films, the production company behind The Satanic Temple paid me as a consultant. I am the person who laid the marketing groundwork for much of what you see and read in the news today regarding Lucien Greaves and his newfound religion, The Satanic Temple. Yes, I took their money, but that was to promote what was presented to me as a practical joke, a Satanic “Yes Men” style group making a mockery of the constant push to intertwine Church and State by Christian fanatics and kooks.
I was approached about this project by my old pal Doug Mesner, a one eyed kid from Detroit and the person I unmasked as Lucien Greaves in Vice Magazine a couple of months ago. Doug and I share a rich history together, it’s a small part of my history and a large part of Doug’s. We forged a relationship of over a decade ago through creative projects he would sometimes help with, he played my straight man on a radio show I did many years ago, and would leave offerings of artwork in hopes I’d use it in my publishing pursuits. Doug was in general a very willing participant and devout student.
Initially, I was asked to take the role of Lucien Greaves, which I flatly refused. The group then hired an actor to portray “Lucien Greaves”, but when he did not work out, Doug stepped into the role, and suddenly the practical joke turned serious. My influence over these years — my words, thoughts and philosophical ramblings among others works have been woven into the fiber of The Satanic Temple’s foundation, but those thoughts have been terribly misrepresented and combined with the temples own questionable agenda.
In addition, they have used clips from a film I made (club satan: the witches sabbath) to create an advertisement for their organization in an attempt to make it appear as though I am in league with their group. I directly asked them not to use my footage, but they did anyway. This desperate attempt to associate themselves with me has forced this document. The actions they took confuse and make it seem as if I’m a co-conspirator with The Satanic Temple, a group I want nothing to do with. I washed my hands of them, but the stink remains.
Therefore today, I must publicly and personally separate myself from Doug Mesner and disavow any further involvement with him or The Satanic Temple, a group I have nothing but disdain for.
I’ll be the first to admit, I’m proud of my pupil for so many things, even some of the stuff Doug has done with The Satanic Temple. At the same time, I’ve become very skeptical of The Satanic Temple, its motives, and its owners. Two of the three behind The Satanic Temple have never been associated with Satanism or any occult group, nor do they appear to have any substantial achievements that can be credited with anything but buying their way in with their family’s money. Spectacle Films is rich kid Cevin Soling, Harvard graduate, director, producer, and the person pulling and paying for the strings of The Satanic Temple. Rich kid #2 is David Guinan, producer, director and creative director at Arise Media. My old pal Doug Mesner is a Harvard graduate who studied cognitive science, (in layman terms, cognitive science is the study of the mind including – psychology, philosophy, linguistics, anthropology and the study and design of intelligent agents). Finally, Doug Mesner is a card carrying member of The Church of Satan, yet he chooses to use the fake name Lucien Greaves when he’s publicly speaking about Satanism — all the while boasting bravery for coming out of the Satanic closet!
I’ll try to explain why I have such a disdain for The Satanic Temple, a practical joke turned religion and could be cult, and the reasons behind my need to make that disdain public, as there is seldom one reason.
I guess you could say, I take my personal, creative and political history seriously and my association with Anton LaVey just as serious. Once you are honored and given an award from the one and only Black Pope himself, in my world, there’s not much that can top that, and it certainly cannot be topped by a comedy act turned cult, after all there is nothing worse than when funny turns serious!
Doug has unfortunately taken his cognitive science degree and started a collegiate debate he feels satisfied he could win time and time again, a debate that regards religion as needed by the human animal and claims Satanists “are doing good” – perhaps the goal all along was to form a cult, a cult that is positioned as an anti-cult cult… I was warned of this possibility years ago, first when Doug asked me to help him with research on The Process Church, which he insisted was skeptical inquiry, but seemed instead to be a search for a primer, and then later when I was enlisted by Mesner, along with Douglas Rushkoff and Michael Shermer for the non-profit group, “The Center for Healing Spiritual and Cultic Abuse“. The group died off fast, regardless the warnings of Doug’s intent rolled in.
Methinks Harvard turns out these great debate artists, they can talk their way into any position of power without having to ever mean what is said, because of course, they can also talk their way out of anything they have said… it’s all open to interpretation, it’s all relative – maybe Doug Mesner aka Lucian Greaves is the Satanic, white, Obama. He’s sure starting to sound that way to me.
Is starting a religion and/or becoming a filmmaker even a respectable use of that Harvard degree in cognitive science? Why would someone study the mind to then go and make films if their intent wasn’t a want of manipulation? Art and film schools certainly are not producing brain surgeons. Then Doug told me his main motivation for The Satanic Temple was profit, to create a “substantial income”, that was enough for me to want to cease helping in any way, and to question the true intent of this project. While I am all for profit, I want nothing to do with a cult. Because the people The Satanic Temple wants to extract money from are MY people – metalheads, the angry and anti-social, those of the Hessian culture.
Not that life is ever fair, but in my opinion, a Harvard graduate of the mind vs. the common man is not a fair fight. One of the underrated reasons our society is on the decline is too many well trained, ivy league, professional mind fuckers working for places like McDonalds. Following the great Edward Bernays’ lead, tempting the ignorant masses to purchase stuff they don’t need, that isn’t remotely healthy and serves to only lessen our species, and by default, offer the whole of humankind more problems than solutions. The enticement and the consumption of religion is paramount to junk food, without a doubt there is no way that vapid manipulation for religious consumption could build humankind’s strength. Religion only serves to produce a more docile animal.
Many years ago, when speaking at an arts event presented by Mesner for mass arts in Boston, I argued with Doug that humans and most animals have a need for ritual, not religion, but ritual, much like the squirrel gathers nuts and the human enjoys a morning cup of coffee, we are hard wired for ritual. Doug and The Satanic Temple have twisted these words and replaced ritual with religion. To what end? Certainly, they would not confuse the two.
Another blatant misrepresentation of my words comes from a conversation we had about Might Is Right, a 100 year old book I have re-published over the years with Anton LaVey’s introduction, and blessing I might add. It promises a second volume “when the time is right”, I spoke with Doug about my plans to co-write and publish the second volume as I felt “the time was right” and expressed my want for creativity, compassion and cooperation to be added to the Might Is Right – Survival of the fittest philosophy. My idea did not and would never include adding those thoughts to LaVey’s compiled, collected, distilled, and pretty right on Satanic philosophy, LaVey’s philosophical belief holds the individual responsible to decide just what compassion is and who should or should not receive it. neither compassion or cooperation are missing from LaVey’s work, so Mesner’s misrepresentation or misunderstanding of LaVey’s philosophy is vile, his scheming and lazy lifting of my ideas truly shameful.
I’m sure Doug and his pals can site other influences, but I understand where my words and influence have permeated.
I for one like my Satan with teeth, very sharp teeth, so, it’s embarrassing to read in the press, from Lucian Greaves aka Doug Mesner comments such as “as long as you are doing good” and even the use of words like “compassion” or “benevolence and empathy” when it comes to satan and Satanism – Jesus fucking christ in hell, on a cross, for eternity, what the fuck!! Who the fuck wants a kinder gentler satan? Sounds like double talk from a politician to me. I call bullshit.
To ask others to do good is to define good. When a society defines good, good becomes law. When a religion defines good, good becomes a rule. When good becomes a rule, the religion has control and the individual ceases to exist. the “do good” rhetoric of the satanic temple is a sign of their true intent. trying to define good beyond the individual is ridiculous, demanding others “do good” is beyond upsetting and something that sets the tone for a master and slave relationship.
The Satanic Temple seems reasonable when it provokes the separation of church and state debate, but when they go on about religion being hard wired for the human, to me, this argument is ridiculous and reduces all that secularists have fought to bring to the mainstream. Intelligence is the higher calling of humankind, not religion, never religion… knowledge is truly a form of power, using power/knowledge to control or manipulate people isn’t my idea of an enlightened individual, I consider that kind of person at the least, misguided and desperate, at the most, an enemy. Being a big fan of reason, and not one who wants to see the secularist movement looked upon as a fad is just another reason that made me feel obligated to speak up. I think any teacher would when one of their students runs amok.
I recall Doug Mesner telling me the C.I.A. had asked him to write some private reports for them, maybe in my most paranoid state I could run with and ramble about the possibilities there… More likely, The Satanic Temple is just the act of a group of social and career climbers using slick psychological marketing tricks in the tradition of Edward Bernays to meet their ends. But at the least, I think anyone could question and everyone should question the intent of a guy from wealth and without ties to the occult as to why he has decided to fund a Satanic religion while pulling the strings of a guy who has such a brilliant mind, who has studied the science of the mind at one of the top learning facilities in the world, and maybe, just maybe you could come up with the same conclusion I have, that The Satanic Temple has ulterior motives above and beyond helping mankind or making a movie.
A Satanic monument is a mindful person looking into a mirror… religion is a control mechanism.
beware – be aware.
need religion? try art as a primer to self… BEHEMOTH “Blow Your Trumpets Gabriel” represents well: http://vimeo.com/80943193
another cult guy who had a religion that revolved around no god… http://youtu.be/4Pp5mWs8k5I?t=23s
a decent video summary of bernays intent… http://youtu.be/qiKMmrG1ZKU
FREE PDF book by edward bernays… bernays_book
the text for LaVey’s devil’s notebook… if you’ve made it this far in my rant, I’d suggest reading it: http://archive.org/stream/Everything_938/The-Devil-s-Notebook-Anton-LaVey_djvu.txt
the above link to the devil’s notebook will probably go away, now that I’ve made it public, if so, you can purchase it here: http://feralhouse.com/the-devils-notebook/
back to the religion of art… Danzig – Am I Demon is pretty solid as far as a primer to the self goes: http://youtu.be/-apRCG2Nffc
**cult leaders come and cult leaders go but self enlightenment and self interest is here to stay. – in the satanic temple case, when I think cult, the first cult leader that comes to mind is Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, so I used his image to represent cult… he of course has nothing to do with the satanic temple that I know of.