I researched Modern Satanic Cults to help Christians avoid Satan and move closer to God.
The largest movement of modern Satanism began in the 1960’s in the United States led by Anton Szandor LaVey, who founded the church of Satan in San Francisco in 1966, whose activities attracted great media attention. Born April 11, 1930, in Chicago, LaVey became interested in music, the occult and investigated haunted houses in his childhood. He married his first wife, Carole, in 1951 and had one daughter, Karla. He studied criminology at City College in San Francisco and spent 3 years as a crime photographer with the San Francisco police department. He quit and returned to play the organ at local night clubs and theatres, and began holding classes on occult subjects.
From 1960 to 1966 LaVey developed his elitist satanic philosophy. He viewed the devil as a dark force hidden in nature and ruling earthly affairs. Man’s true nature, he claimed, is one of lust, pride, hedonism and willfulness, attributes that enable the advancement of civilization. The flesh should not be denied but celebrated, and individuals who stand in the way of achieving what one wants should be cursed.
On April 30, 1966, LaVey shaved his head and announced the founding of the Church of Satan. He shrewdly recognized the shock value of using the term church for worshiping. He performed satanic baptisms, weddings and funerals with widespread media coverage, and Karla began giving lectures on Satanism at universities and colleges. The Church attracted an international following, mostly middle-class, and included occultists, thrill seekers, curious people, racists, political right-wingers, and celebrities.
LaVey preached all forms of gratification and vengeance. Enemies were to be hated and smashed, and sex exalted. He opposed the use of drugs, saying they were escapist and unnecessary to achieving natural highs. LaVey turned much of his organizational activities over to others in the church and began writing books around 1970: The Satanic Bible, The Satanic Rituals, and The Compleat Witch.
In 1975 the Church suffered a serious loss of members, who left to form a new satanic organization, The Temple of Set. In the mid 1970’s the Church of Satan reorganized as a secret society headquartered in San Francisco, but membership began to rise again in the 1980’s. A number of other satanic groups formed in the United States in the 1970’s were defunct by the 1980’s, but satanic activities remain widespread on both sides of the Atlantic. The extent of Satanism was impossible to gauge, because of the great secrecy of many organizations. Some Satanists were associated with Neo-Nazi organizations and other Satanic cults were involved in drug, prostitution and pornography trade, and their members included white-collar professionals.
The most dangerous were small cults whose members called themselves Satanists and practiced ritual murder and animal mutilation. Such groups kidnapped runaway children and the homeless to use them as sacrificial victims. Ex-Satanic cult members have reported gruesome rituals in which hearts were cut out of living victims. Others reported victims were sexually abused before being killed; their blood was drunk and their flesh was eaten. Women “breeders” produced babies for the “ultimate” and “ideal” human sacrifice. Former breeders reported witnessing their babies being skinned alive, eaten, burned, cut up and thrown into the ocean, and ritual tools were made from their bones.
Satanism has been linked to some oppressive heavy metal rock bands and adolescent suicides and murders. Some troubled teens apparently turned to Satanism when they felt powerless and abandoned by their families. They joined cults that encouraged, or required them to perform acts of violence to prove their homage to Satan. Drug abuse was common, and the ritual violence gave them a sense of power.