Why Satanism is Dumb.

I was recently informed that Satanism is dumb because:
"The first rule of Satanism is to 'do what you want' therefore, if you follow any of the rules after that, that is someone else telling you what to do and not you 'doing what you want'. Hence Satanism is dumb."
I don't know the rules of Satanism and I'm paraphrasing this revelation from someone who promptly declared themselves to be very smart. So smart, in fact, they thought they might inform the Satanist 'Pope' at their first opportunity.

My article was prompted because this person was very pleased with their conclusion and, at the time, I didn't want to lock horns with such a theological master. (Notice how I'm using big words like 'theological' and 'revelation' to make it sound like I actually know something about this subject - I had to look both words up just to check I was using them in the correct context by the way).

Back to the rules of Satanism (which I suspect are much like the Pirate Code and more like guidelines than actual rules). Perhaps you've spotted the flaws in this argument against Satanism?

My immediate thought was, what if you choose to follow the rest of the rules? It's your choice right? You're doing what you want to do which is follow the rest of the rules.

Taking that thought to an extreme conclusion, if 'doing what you want' means choosing to follow all the rules of Christianity, does that make you a Satanist or a Christian?

Then, I thought a bit more about the original argument. If you follow the first rule of Satanism then, technically, that is someone else telling you to do what you want therefore you're not 'doing what you want'. Hmmm... almost as weird a logic as the argument its self.

At this point of my writing, I thought I'd do some research of my own. It turns out that the first rule of Satanism (at least the one referenced above) isn't actually a rule but rather it is a major Satanic social ethic that reads like this:
"Do whatever you want as long as you harm no undeserving person"

Source: Satanic Ethics and teachings on morality in Satanism by Vexen Crabtree.
The same source article above references Eleven Satanic Laws, none of which state 'Do whatever you want'. The article also states that Satanists are not bound to these laws and that there is no taboo amongst Satanists if the laws are broken. Hence, one might conclude that these 'laws' are more like 'guidelines'.

Like most people I thought Satanism is akin to 'devil worship' but, based upon my very limited reading thus far I suspect 'devil worship' is a Christian label applied to Satanists. Reading the eleven laws, they actually seem quite reasonable statements, with one or two perhaps leaning towards extreme violence if taken too literally.

In any event, I don't wish to be thought of as promoting Satanism. This article was simply to vent some thoughts I had about someone else's conclusion on the subject.

I don't profess to have any detailed understanding of theology in general and wouldn't like to prove my ignorance by stating any further poorly drawn and unresearched conclusions. Best leave that to other people.

Free Stock Images for your Blog

You may have noticed that I haven't posted to this blog for quite some time. That's largely been due to a lack of motivation on my part. If all has gone well, on the top right of this post you should see an interesting image of a blogger talking with his hand along with the text 'Blah, Blah, Blog'.

In many respects this is how I've felt about writing of late. Why bother if you don't really have anything of great value to say?

In an attempt to break the drought of posts, this post is to inform you of a new image hosting service called PicApp which breaks through all the legalities of using copyright images through ad supported image hosting of pictures provided by publishers willing to let their images be used in this way.

The image on this post comes from PicApp and demonstrates how the ads appear on an embeded image. Supposedly the ads are relevant to content (I wonder if this breaches Google's Adsense terms in any way?).

However, what makes the concept cool is that using the images is almost as simple as ripping off copyrighted images from other web sites - only with PicApp you're not likely to risk a law suit. Just browse PicApps database for a suitable image, choose one of the standard sizes, then paste some code into your blog where the image should appear. Easy!

At the time of writing this post the site was still in Beta Test mode but already has a substantial data base of stock and current events images. Eventually you'll be able to upload your own images and earn some of that ad revenue as well.

Well worth a look if you need some stock images to enhance your blog.

Squeezing the Toothpaste: A Metaphor

I remember when toothpaste was sold in a metal tube. Back then, as a child, you'd cop it from Mum or Dad if you squeezed the tube anywhere but from the bottom. You could even buy special keys that would wind the toothpaste tube up from the bottom so you could get every last bit of paste - no wastage.

Then along came the plastic tubes. Finally you could squeeze anywhere and the tube would retain its shape - or so they said in the sales pitch. For the most part this was true. It wasn't as much of a problem squeezing the new plastic tube from the top. Squeezing toothpaste from the tube was now easy - or so you thought.

The thing about squeezing the tube from the top (or even the middle) is that it leaves some of the paste at the bottom. Eventually you do have to spend extra time pushing the paste from the bottom up into the top of the tube.

Not like the old days when squeezing from the bottom meant you got just the right amount of paste and the tube was always ready for the next person to use. Efficient.

Can the inefficiencies of modern toothpaste tubes be a metaphor for modern times where people often choose the easy option, not realizing that it will actually mean extra work later on? I think so.

The 'easy' option sometimes is deceptive. A little bit more thought can often reveal a better way of doing things that is actually less work.

That's why I still squeeze my toothpaste tube from the bottom (not that this works very well when others in my family don't...*sighs*).
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