Theistic Satanism: Home > Rituals, etc. > For newbies > Self-initiation rite
A preliminary self-initiation rite
by Diane Vera
Copyright © 2003, 2004, 2006 by Diane Vera. All rights reserved.
- Introductory notes about the ritual
- The ritual itself
- After the ritual
- Introductory notes about the ritual
A lot of new theistic Satanists have performed dedication rites, making oaths of longterm dedication to Satan. Some theistic Satanist leaders recommend a rite of "dedicating your soul to Satan" or "making a commitment to Satan" as your very first ritual. With that idea, I strongly disagree. It's like marrying someone you just met yesterday. I would recommend a dedication rite only after you have been a theistic Satanist for at least a several years, long enough to be sure that you want to be a Satanist for the rest of your life and beyond (if indeed there is a beyond). Oaths or promises to Satan should be taken very seriously. Don't make any promise to Satan until you are sure you can keep it. (For more about dedication rituals, see my article Pacts and self-initiation.)
For those who are itching to do something like a dedication rite, but who have not been theistic Satanists for at least several years, I would suggest the ritual below instead. In the following ritual, you can state your intent to revere Satan -- but without yet making any lifelong (let alone eternal) promises. Various people who have performed the rite have repotted to me that it also helped them sense the presence of Satan and feel a lot closer to Satan. Some have also reported that it helped them become more creative and/or made it easier to learn various magick-related skills. Your mileage may vary - I make no promises as to what this ritual will or won't do for you.
For self-initiation purposes, I recommend both (1) the self-initiation ritual further down on this page and (2) a rite of blasphemy, such as the renunciation rite. The two rituals should be performed separately, and may be performed in either order, depending on your level of preparation for each.
If you've only recently left Christianity (or whatever else in your background might be your most suitable target for s blasphemy rite), and if you feel deeply drawn to Satan but have not yet spent much time examining the arguments both for and against your former belief system, then you should probably do the self-initiation rite first and wait until quite a bit later to do a rite of irrevocable blasphemy such as the renunciation rite. This advice is especially applicable to those who left Christianity (or whatever) because of a deep attraction to Satan and to the freedom that Satanism offers.
On the other hand, if you left Christianity (or whatever) years ago and are already thoroughly familiar with the arguments both for and against it, and if you've also explored a variety of other belief systems since then and are only now feeling drawn to Satanism, then, in that case, you might perhaps find the self-initiation rite to be at least somewhat more effective if you perform a rite of blasphemy first, Even so, you might still feel more comfortable with performing the self-initiation rite first, in which case you should follow your own instincts on this matter.
Rites of blasphemy can be very beneficial, especially for those struggling with fears leftover from their religious upbringing. (See The purpose of blasphemy in Satanism.) However, I recommend a rite of blasphemy only after you are fully convinced, on an intellectual level, that the religion (or other dogma/ideology) you were brought up in is false. Do your homework on an intellectual level first, e.g. by studying the Arguments against traditional Christian beliefs and perhaps participating in some religious debate forums (or other relevant debate forums, if the ideology you need to deprogram yourself from is nonreligious). Only then should you perform a rite of blasphemy to help you free yourself from any remaining purely irrational fears.
Some intellectual preparation is recommended before the self-initiation rite too. In particular, it is recommended that you become familiar with a variety of different kinds of theistic Satanism and decide which ones make the most sense to you. My self-initiation rite is compatible with some, though not all, theistic Satanist theologies. It is compatible with those forms of theistic Satanism in which Satan is seen as both "the God of this world" and the God of your own innermost Will, so that the will of Satan for your life corresponds to your own innermost Will.
The ritual below is designed for members and prospective members of the Church of Azazel. If you are not a member or prospective member of the Chruch of Azazel, feel free to modify the ritual so as to make it more compatible with your own beliefs. For example, the ritual contains a call to five Rising gods of the modern West and a thanks to these same rising gods as part of the suggested ritual closing. If these gods play no role at all in your personal belief system, then you may omit the call and thanks to them, or you may replace those parts of the ritual with a call and thanks to some other set of gods who do mean more to you personally.
I strongly recommend that the self-initiation rite be performed in the nude. (For most other rituals, I recommend ritual garb, though nudity is OK for other rituals too.) Nakedness symbolizes the shedding of all artificiality and superficiality, opening your innermost self to Satan.
For more information about what the self-initiation rite is supposed to accomplish and how, see Notes on the self-initiation prayer.
- The ritual itself
The ritual should be performed on three nights in a row.
- Prepare for the ritual as instructed in my article on Preparations for formal ritual.
The room should be lit by a single black candle on your altar. (You may also have a small flashlight handy if you need it to read your crib sheet.)
- Standing upright, naked, perform your preferred beginning-of-ritual markers. (See Banishing rituals, grounding, and other beginning/end-of-ritual markers.) Then face your altar. You should be facing west.
- Say the Call to the rising gods of our age, especially if you are a member or prospective member of the Church of Azazel.
If you are new at performing rituals, say the call to the rising gods three times. Otherwise, just once may be sufficient.
- Say an invocation to Satan, such as my own Invocation to Satan. Or use an invocation written by you. Whatever invocation you use, it should (1) mention a variety of different attributes of Satan, (2) be something you personally find emotionally moving, and (3) be respectful and reverent in tone, but without being self-denigrating. (In the self-initiation rite, do not use the Prayer of acknowledgment of Satan's rulership as your preliminary invocation, because you'll be using that prayer later in the ritual.)
If you are new at performing rituals, say the invocation three times. Otherwise, just once may be sufficient.
- Say the Greetings to the Princes and the Legions of Hell. These are said facing west, then south, then east, then north, then west again. Use the version emphasizing the element of Water (West).
- And now for the most important part of this ritual: Facing west, say the Prayer of acknowledgment of Satan's rulership three times.
As you say it, contemplate the presence of Satan pervading every part of "this world" and every part of yourself. Your attitude whould be one of surrender to your own innermost self, which is assumed to be ruled by Satan.
- Pause for at least few minutes, perhaps longer. Silently contemplate the presence and power of Satan.
I would suggest that the period of silent contemplation be kept fairly short on the first night, then become longer on each of the two subsequent nights on which you do the ritual. (However, don't look at the clock. The exact length of time should be determined only by what feels right to you at that moment.)
- Pray to Satan for guidance. For example, you may wish to ask Satan for guidance in learning about magick, or in finding ways to meet other theistic Satanists. You may also ask Satan for guidance in mundane matters, as well as in matters pertaining to your development as a Satanist.
Your prayer for guidance may be either spontaneous or written beforehand. In either case, it should be personalized to your particular situation and needs.
- If you're already experienced at ritual magick, meditation, etc., you now may either put yourself into a trance (by whatever means works best for you) or use divination of some sort, to receive the requested guidance.
Otherwise, if you're NOT experienced at this sort of thing, skip this part. Just proceed with the ritual and expect to receive the requested guidance later, in some other, more spontaneous fashion.
- Close the ritual, essentially by saying a thanks and farewell to the Legions in all directions, and, of course, a thanks to Satan Himself, and then a thanks to the rising gods of our age.
You may use my standard recommended ritual closing. Use the version emphasizing the element of Water (West). (The thanks to the Ancient Serpent should read, "I thank You for drawing me to You!")
- Conclude with any additional end-of-ritual markers you deem appropriate. (See Banishing rituals, grounding, and other beginning/end-of-ritual markers.) Then blow out the candle and turn on the lights.
- After the ritual
The above ritual should be performed on three nights in a row.
Then, for at least a few months after the third night, I recommend that you say the Prayer of acknowledgment of Satan's rulership (either by itself or as the first of two or three devotional prayers, not as part of a full-fledged formal ritual) every night just before you go to bed, then again soon after you wake up, and again before meditation practice. It is recommended that your daily devotional routine include spontaneous prayer as well as one or more recited prayers.
If you desire to learn magick, you should also begin daily practice of meditation and other magick-related mental skills, if you have not done so already. (See Psychic development techniques and ritual magick.) Since one of the purposes of the self-initation rite is to help make it easier for you to learn these skills, it would behoove you to follow up by practicing them regularly.
I would very much appreciate feedback, either via email or in one of my forums, on how the ritual went for you and how it has affected your life.