What is best for the child: It is not doubted that Satanists want what is best for their children the same as other parents probably do. Unlike many religious groups, however, there is no pressure for any religious involvement for the child. Quite the opposite, I have found many Satanists are more concerned about indoctrination (even by accident by themselves) of their child by any religious group, including the Satanists' own beliefs.
“I am curious to know your views on this , how one goes about this without trying to sway the child(ren) one way or the other, thus taking away their free will to go which way they choose. In our house I think we have chosen the method of satanic parenting as far as discipline, rewards etc., without subjecting the children to the philosophy.”
Fmr988 on alt.satanism on 2002 Mar 16
“If we're talking about rituals, etc, I would agree - leave children out of it. If we're just talking philosophy, I would say that we should raise our children in a way that they will (we hope) become strong, creative, intelligent adults. How much more Satanic can you get?”
“My son is 12yrs old. He's always been the most down-to-earth, reasonable and polite kid I've ever met. I see you've [member of Satanism-UK] got a couple yourself. I certainly wouldn't have another as I put everything I've got into my son. Yup, he's independantly minded alright. I taught him to speak very early so he was absolutely fluent by the time he was two, and so he's never had a tantrum in his life. Seeing as I taught him to talk I'd better listen, right?
[... examples of excellence] I once asked him what it was like before he was born. This was when he was three. He replied "I was like a picture frame with no picture in it." Many a time he has taken my breath away.
I had some trouble when he first started school though because they'd read a story out which involved a witch being killed. I ended up summoned to see the teacher to explain the comment "My mummy's a witch." Usually, though, he's extraordinarily socially aware and self-conscious. We are very close. More like brother and sister these days. I've never had cause to so much as shout at him. But then, I'm extremely laid back. Life's too short to say "no" without a damn fine reason. You'd think he was spoilt, but he's never asked for anything except a hug.”
“I have 12 year old son and a toddler who's nearly 2. My 12 year old goes to church with my wife every Sunday. He does it through choice though and actually volunteered to be an altar boy. He knows what I am and if he askes about my beliefs, I answer him as honestly as possible. I don't really like the fact that he goes to church but by the same token, I don't want to indoctrinate him to my views. My hope is that one day we can sit down and talk frankly about these things and he can make up his own mind. He's got another 2 years before he has to decide if he wants to be confirmed or not.”
By @stolath on his
Satanism-UK message board(2001 Sep 06)
“I've been very lucky in my life. I have a treasure. Three beautiful and intelligent daughters.
...Satanism is a philosophy of the self. One must come to it uncoerced and unforced. In other words, no, I didn't raise my daughters to be Satanists. How could I choose their paths for them? I had no business saying that my babies were going to be dedicated to the Satanic way even before they had uttered their first word.
So how did I raise my girls? To be as open-minded as possible, and accept that all paths are valid to the people who believe in them. I told them that when they were old enough, they could select a path, and that I would support them in their choice. If my girls had chosen to become nuns because that was their calling, I would not have argued.”
Isabal Gallant, a long time LaVeyan Satanist.
Unconditional grace for the child
Without these, any parenthood is useless, and the parent uncaring. The basis for the mental health of a child is to know that they are loved, cared for and supported, even when they seriously err.
I could go on (by example) to note that Satanists respect free will and the nature of the free spirit of man and will actively not encourage their child to be the same religion as the parent. By that token, the child is not forced away, or to, religion, the child's choice in these matters is more important than the dogmatic principle of anti religion.
“Dating to the parenting theories of our founder Anton LaVey, Satanists do not feel that children should be forced to study theology...Satanic or otherwise. Children, it is believed, should be free to explore their imagination and possibilities and talents sans pie-in-the-sky rewards or under the threat of divine punishment
...Another important factor in parenting is dealing with external influences, such as school. Your kids will be exposed to the propaganda of spirituality whether or not you want them to be. Accept it. Just know that you can only explain that different cultures or people have different customs and views and that while some may belive in X or Y, that you personally embrace the Third Side notion of Z. You are their Mom or Dad...they will automatically listen to your counsel in these matters and be able to draw from your wisdom as they grow and face these questions as individuals. Ultimately, religion is a personal choice and decision...even to be an atheist. All we can do as parents is prepare our young with choices and information. Let them know how we feel and then lead by example.
And, as any fool should know when addressing any parenting issue: Let them know they are unconditionally loved, make time for them as best you can, and keep the lines of communication open. The potential is staggering. The rewards are grand. The time is now. It is the Age of Fire! Hail to the Iron Youth: You are our future!”
SATANIC PARENTING, a newsletter discussing issues relating to being a Satanist and raising Satanic children, edited by Church of Satan Priestess Lydia Gage, c/o IZM Enterprises, PO Box 353, Maple Park, IL, 60151
Info from www.maledicta.com/library
also listed as:
SATANIC PARENTING, Sharing Ideas for the Infernal Empire, available from IZM Enterprises, PO Box 353, Maple Park, IL 60151. Edited by Lydia Gage.