Satanic Temple’s Seven Tenets Are Morally Superior To Ten Commandments

Satanic Temple’s Seven Tenets Are Morally Superior To Ten Commandments January 22, 2016

When it comes to morality, the Satanic Temple’s Seven Tenets are morally superior to the Bible’s Ten Commandments.

Based in Massachusetts, and with approximately 20 chapters across the U.S., The Satanic Temple’s seven fundamental tenets are as follows:

  • Strive to act with compassion and empathy toward all creatures in accordance with reason.

  • The struggle for justice is an ongoing and necessary pursuit that should prevail over laws and institutions.

  • One’s body is inviolable, subject to one’s own will alone.

  • The freedoms of others should be respected, including the freedom to offend. To willfully and unjustly encroach upon the freedoms of another is to forgo your own.

  • Beliefs should conform to our best scientific understanding of the world. We should take care never to distort scientific facts to fit our beliefs.

  • People are fallible. If we make a mistake, we should do our best to rectify it and resolve any harm that may have been caused.

  • Every tenet is a guiding principle designed to inspire nobility in action and thought. The spirit of compassion, wisdom, and justice should always prevail over the written or spoken word.

Now compare the Satanic Temple’s Seven Tenets with the Bible’s Ten Commandments (King James Version):

  1. Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

  2. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.

  3. Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.

  4. Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.

  5. Honour thy father and thy mother.

  6. Thou shalt not kill.

  7. Thou shalt not commit adultery.

  8. Thou shalt not steal.

  9. Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.

  10. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor anything that is thy neighbour’s.

Note the first four of the Ten Commandments have nothing to do with human morality, and are instead all about how to worship God. Note also that those commandments that do have contact with human morality are for the most part all negative: “Thou shalt not…”

Compared to the Ten Commandments list of bad behaviors to be avoided, the Satanists offer a more moral, and more optimistic stance, emphasizing positive, pro social values. Writing at Salon, Valerie Tarico explains the superiority of the Satanic Temple’s Seven Tenets when compared to the Bible’s Ten Commandments:

Anyone who is familiar with the Ten Commandments will immediately recognize that these seven tenets offer an easier path to equanimity than do the famous Ten. The first of the Ten Commandments—Thou shalt have no other gods before me—asserts the primacy of a single deity rather than the primacy of compassion and empathy. It prescribes competition between religious worldviews, the very antagonism expressed by Christian students in Bremerton and Christian callers from across the country.

More broadly, the seven tenets emphasize positive, pro-social values rather than bad behaviors to be avoided. They largely express egalitarian values that transcend tribal boundaries, in contrast to the Ten Commandments, which endorse the view that women, slaves and livestock are possessions of men. They invite inquiry rather than certitude and individuality over tribalism.

The Satanic Temple is a faith community that describes itself as facilitating “the communication and mobilization of politically aware Satanists, secularists, and advocates for individual liberty.”

Recently the Satanic Temple made headlines after offering to escort Muslims who were afraid to leave their homes out of fear of a growing anti-Muslim backlash resulting from the last year’s Paris terrorist attacks.

In addition, the Satanic Temple has been on the front lines in defending a woman’s right to an abortion and promoting the separation of church and state guaranteed by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Bottom line: When it comes to morality, the Satanic Temple’s Seven Tenets are morally superior to the Bible’s Ten Commandments.

Baphomet Statue (Image via Satanic Temple)
Baphomet Statue (Image via Satanic Temple)
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