What is EVIL?

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 one for allWhat is Evil? What does it look, like?  More importantly, what does it feel like?

That which sides with Satan: Diabolical, sly, sneaky, in shadow and tests your Ethos is evil.  The character you build may not be the one that you are.    When you believe yourself to have a strong, moral character, astute ethics and are an all around  ‘good person’; it can be deduced that you’ve been clothed with the doctrine of society; for to embrace Evil is to be sinful, immoral and abnormal.  Eventually, it fits like a straight jacket.  It feels restrictive and binding.

Synonyms include but are not limited to: bad, corrupt, destructive, hateful, heinous, hideous, malevolent, malicious, nefarious, ugly, unpleasant, vicious, vile, villainous, wicked, base, foul, low, offensive, poison, reprobate, wrong, angry, atrocious, baneful, beastly, calamitous, damnable, depraved, disastrous, execrable, flagitious, harmful, iniquitous, injurious, loathsome, maleficent, malignant, no good, obscene, pernicious, rancorous, repugnant, repulsive, revolting, spiteful, stinking, unpropitious, wrathful.

I’ll use the film The Ninth Gate (1999) to frame it, may even switch between the movie and the book The Club Dummas – so do try to keep up.

Witkin

“(Corso)Precise, unscrupulous and deadly as a black mamba”

Take Mr. Witkin for example.  Corso beats him to the punch, downplays the volume’s real value and gets the books from the estate in his grips for a whole lot less.  Corso can then reap a decent profit when he sells them.  Witkin, knowing Corso’s reputation and the quickness by which he acts.  Calls him out.    Does this make him one of the good guys?

Witkin’s overall look and demeanor are supposed to give the viewer the impression he’s on the up and up.  Corso knowing Witkin’s reputation, gets in and out before he can even take an inventory, let alone haggle with a price on a collection.   Having been beat at his own game, doesn’t by default make Witkin a good person with strong moral character.  It only means he’s slow on the draw and was outwitted by Corso (again).

 

Balkans: “Strange. I’d have bet a brace [pair] of Gutenberg Bibles you spend half the night with your eyes peeled. You’re one of those lean, hungry, restless types that put the wind up Julius Caesar. Men who stab their friends in the back.”

Balkans hires Corso for his reputation, not because he’s a nice fellow that’s trustworthy.  Money talks and Balkans is offering Corso a nice sum for authenticating his copy of the Nine Doors (Ninth Gate).   In knowing of Mr. Corso, Balkans can also appeal to his sense of pride as being on point with his knowledge, techniques and relentless pursuit.

To be one that would stab his own friend in the back is considered to the contrary of what society would call a ‘good person’ yet, plenty of ‘bad people’ get on pretty well in the world.

The Ceniza Brothers also give the impression that they are ‘good guys’, yet the hint dropped by them during Corso’s first visit to the shop, later proves to be a key.

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When the brothers giggle and speak about the ‘Master’ forger, they are really speaking about their own craft. Unbeknownst to Corso and the reader at the time, is that the brothers did in fact forge missing pages so that the Nine Doors in their possession could be sold as a complete and authentic copy.

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“If this is a forgery with missing pages restored, it’s the work of a master”

When Corso is given the clue by Lucifer, he returns to find the shop cleaned out but he does in fact locate the missing original page he was pursuing.  In spite of being shady in business dealings, the Ceniza brothers are quite successful and get on in this life rather well. In spite of their dishonesty.

Corso’s characterization does present some moral fiber, even if the majority of his deeds appear to be amoral.   When Fargas refuses to sell and Balkans pushes him to take the copy, he refuses.  In the meantime, Mrs. Taillefer beats them both to the punch when Fargas is found dead in the fountain, his copy of the Nine Doors stolen and Corso is left to take the fall for both murder and theft.

In the book however, Corso arranges a ‘burglary’ with his partner Pinto but still he’s adamant that he doesn’t want Pinto to harm Fargas, only stage the burglary and steal the book.  Pinto protests Corso’s irritating reminders, he knows his work.  The purpose is to point to Corso’s Ethic.

Maybe Fargas is the good guy?  Just an innocent old man that collects valuable books right?  Even Victor Fargas has his own story of woe and suffering, in the book Corso described him as close to madness by the state of his home, even if the collection was kept impeccable.  Fargas was slipping away, paying the price to the deeds of his youth.  To embrace Evil is to be transformed by it.  Whether the outcome is ‘good’ or ‘bad’ remains to be seen.

“Jackals on the sent of the Gutenberg Bible”

Years ago my Black Book of Names caused a stir as I was selling handmade books using the engravings from The Club Dummas.  In Occult circles the whole “And it harm none, do as ye will” axiom rears its head but its so rarely understood.  White-lighters believe they are ‘harmless’ all while sweeping the harm that they do under the rug as if no one will notice it.  I sure the hell see it.

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Those that don’t practice but just tow the line of “We don’t harm anybody!” are just idiots with no real ability to comprehend what it means.   This book, what’s written in it, or thought in the Ether is for the person that posses it.  His WILL be done, regardless of repercussions.  Short of grabbing the thing and smacking someone in the head with it, the only real harm it does to another person is to their fragile psyche.

I’ve been accused of causing illness and death by just suggesting a person may be in it.  In truth, grab the thing (a prop) off my library shelf and you’ll find that aside the woodcuts, the pages are blank.  Malevolent Magic.  I’ll be sorry they tell me, I’m going to hell or some Karma boogeyman is going to eat my soul or some shit.  These are the things they believe.  All that Evil in the world is just the stuff they don’t like, makes them uncomfortable or ashamed and dishonored by the code they’ve been taught.

Is there a single good guy in The Ninth Gate?  Even if you pointed to the so called innocent standers-by, you don’t know their story.  Everybody has a story and in it, are deeds of Evil.

This Sagan quote gets shared about so often, I doubt its given a second thought.  My immediate thought is that child abuse is an act of Satan.  To the Satanists with good guy badges, it’s all “But we don’t harm little children!”  completely missing the point.  The act of harming children in a society that asserts that it’s wrong and taboo, assigns it as Left-hand Path action.  Aside that, harm is subjective.  Millions of people believe they are doing right and good by their children, harming them, without ever laying a finger on them.  Believers and Non-Believers alike.  So please, don’t tell me that you don’t embrace Evil.

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Carl Sagan and Corso aren’t that different in terms of character.  Not only did he say this, he meant it with righteous indignation.   He also said:

“Skeptical scrutiny is the means, in both science and religion, by which deep thoughts can be winnowed from deep nonsense.”

I’d consider the statement about zealots deep nonsense.  I remain skeptical of his intentions when he said it and the science of mind doesn’t add up.

Having said it, does it make him a good person because he seemingly rejects the abuses of children?  What about the harm done in the name of self-righteousness?  In the name of protecting them?

The 9th Engraving Woodcut interprets to:  “Now I know that from Darkness comes Light” , things considered dark, unknowable and off-limits can certainly light your ass on fire.  One can be illuminated, in that your ignorance has been pulled into the light.  If you reject Evil and all those spooky bad things, you can be assured you’re cutting off one hand to save the other.   You’ve put a fence up in the field of knowledge but you’re not safe.  Not even close.  Eventually Evil penetrates barriers and erases imaginary lines.  Temptation to know, is like that.

Sin Jones

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Ethics vs. Morals

Ethics and Morals are often used interchangeably that it has become quite the task to sort out the difference between the two.  There can be both a societal and personal Ethic.  The same is true for Morality.  Generally speaking, these concepts deal in what is right and wrong, correct and incorrect behavior to produce particular outcomes.   From early childhood you are told stories with a moral with the purpose of coaching an Ethic.    As you mature you discover that the effort is a futility.

Hansel & Gretel first published in 1812, is such an example of a story with both a moral and ethics at work.

Right off, the story begins with a couple with two children that are in financial strife to the point where they must make a decision, otherwise all (4) will starve.  When the wife suggests that the children should be left to the woods and no longer their burden, the husband immediately reacts from a moral position.  He couldn’t dream of abandoning his children and leave them directly in harm’s way.  The wife counters with the practicality of such an act (Ethic), for if they keep their children then they run the risk of all of them starving.  As Grimm as the story is, the silver lining is the chance that the children could learn to survive, and so too can the couple having 2 less people to be a burden to them.   The husband reluctantly agrees but still feels ‘bad’ about what they are about to do.

The children are left and at first, they stay and weep and then hunger sets in.  They can either stay put and starve, or venture out to find food and shelter.  Hansel assures Gretel that God will not forsake them.   Along their journey they happen upon a house made of sweets which alludes to HIS presence.  Inside is an old woman that lures them with promises of comfort, though her intent is more malicious as she only seeks to fatten the children for her pot.

Morally, the children trusted the old woman because they couldn’t imagine in their naivety that she’d mean to do them harm. Once they discover her plot, Ethically they must do something or else end up her dinner.    The two devise a plan, trick the old woman and push her in the oven to die thus saving themselves.  To boot, they steal items of value before heading home.  Why didn’t they stay, since the obstacle in their path to survival has been overcome?

Once they find their way home, they hand these goods over to their Father believing in the “Happy Ever After”.  Mom is no longer in the scene, leaving that issue to the imagination and the reader’s instruction to explain it to their children.  God has forsaken her, “Thou Shalt Not Suffer a Poisoner to Live”.

Metaphorically, the Mother and the Old Woman in the confectioner’s house are the same person.  This is why she’s no longer mentioned after the old woman is killed in the oven.  Thought to be written during a period of famine in the Middle Ages, this is situational Ethics.   In spite of the normative sense of morality and ethics in any given society, there are situations that call for actions that may be in direct opposition to them.  What is right and wrong, good and bad – change places.

The parents deceived and abandoned their children.

The children Murdered but by doing so, saved their own lives.

The old woman/mother is the villain, even if both parents share in responsibility.  This contrast is needed, in order to teach morals.  Forgiveness for Father but none for the Mother?

Father having shown a moral at the beginning of the story is forgiven, the stolen goods are salvation and happiness Ever After.

In spite of the religious era, and “All Seeing God”, sin is rarely if ever a consideration during the telling of the tale.  Murder and Theft is no longer immoral because the ethic dictates that if one seeks to harm you, you do what you must to save yourself from harm.  Didn’t Father also seek to harm the children?  This can easily be justified by Religious Ethics, for God would just consider it self-defense and forgiveness is arbitrarily assigned based on the moral fiber of the characters.

Stories like this apply to a modern society that considers itself civilized and moral to have ethics that are situational.

Ethically, a governing body is seen as a ‘good’ until it does something bad.  Equally, in spite of a personal moral, the normative sense opposes it.  Even if citizens see ‘wrongs’, ethically they are lost to ‘right’ them.  The ‘freedom’ to lament without consequence is even in ethical dilemma when the morals of what is being said fall subject to scrutiny.

Is it any wonder why the distinction between the two is so difficult to see?

SIN JONES

All of Them Witches!

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Witch Trial in Salem?  All of Them Witches are at it again.  Christian Day receives international media attention when a friendship goes south and Witches compete for the retail market in Salem.  Tune in to Poison Apple Radio for a frank discussion about the aftermath of Pagans Behaving Badly, the Witch Trial in Salem and how negative press forces one to rethink their public image and its impact on business.

If you’re not familiar with this character, here’s a bio written by the man himself:

Christian Day is a modern day Warlock living in the “Witch City” of Salem, Massachusetts. A practitioner of the ancient arts of Witchcraft—a spiritual path devoted to old world folk magic, healing, and veneration of the dead, Christian and his husband, Brian Cain, own two occult shops in Salem: HEX: Old World Witchery, dedicated to the practices of Witchcraft, Hoodoo, and Conjure, and OMEN, a psychic parlor and Witchcraft emporium which features a staff of gifted psychic readers. They also have a Hex shop in New Orleans. Each October, Christian and Brian host Salem’s annual Festival of the Dead, an event series that includes such popular events as the Official Salem Witches’ Halloween Ball, an Annual Psychic Fair and Witchcraft Expo, and an authentic séance. In June, Christian and Brian host HexFest, a Weekend of Witchery in Old New Orleans. Among his many media appearances, Christian has been featured on The Travel Channel, Showtime, TLC, MSNBC, Dish Network and in The Chicago Tribute, The Wall Street Journal, The Boston Globe, The Boston Herald, CNN.comUSAToday.com and, of course, The Salem News. Often controversial, Christian has certainly raised eyebrows and turned heads in his over 25 years in the Craft, but, despite all the chatter, good and bad, he insists on marching to his own drum and standing for his own vision.

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The show will be 90 minutes, I may or may not take live callers depending on the flow of the discussion.     It’s bound to be full of drama, at times funny and at others face-palm worthy.

Be there or despair!

SIN JONES

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Empathy for Animals: Satanists Love them Too!

Poison Apple Radio Banner Join me Thursday, February 26th at 6:30 pm EST for a follow-up show to Animal Sacrifice: Taboo to Satanists?   Melissa Colton will chime in with her perspective as an animal trainer, lover of furry beasts and Modern Satanist.  I will be taking callers during the last segment of the show, the call in number is (347) 855-8280.  Keep them brief and to the point. 2009-2-12-L-3-5-78 Is Animal Sacrifice out-dated and wrong for our modern age?  If so, why?  Listen in and find out!  Subscribe to Poison Apple Radio for future shows  and check Poisonappleradio.com for Mp3 archives.

Resources: PETA Virginia’s Animal Killing Machine? Animal Welfare in Virginia VA PAWS Lamb of God? Animal Law Virginia Animal Control Virginia Virginia Assembly Animal Care The Lanning Report SRAS

Available on: Itunes

Poison Apple Radio: Pagans behaving badly: Christian Day

Also available on: Itunes


2015 Update:  Witch Wins Protective Order Against Warlock

Daily Dot

Interview with Christian Day on Poison Apple Radio

Paganspace.net Discussion Topic:  Misbehaving pagans

Issue#2 Available for Downloading

Issue#2 now available for Free Download

Check out Into the Fire… Left-hand Path Ezine

Into the Fire Ezine

Issue #2 available for downloading.  Any/all Feedback will be used to improve upon future issues.

A special thanks to all contributors:  T.C. Downey, Krist Hollow, Dan Dread, Canis Machina, Azazel, Timishardcore, Female Satan, Sin Jones, Concomitant Dissidence Nexion, Entropic Momentum; as well as our readers, promoters and supporters.

Deadline for Issue#3:  March 18th

Topic:  Myths

The use of myths both Ancient and Modern to flesh out Left-hand path ideation.

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