As above, so below
Baphomet, probably most popularly associated with the 19th century “Sabbatic Goat” illustration by Eliphas Lévi, but also with (false) ties to the Knights Templar. It contains binary elements that point to the equilibrium of opposites- male/female, above and below, darkness and light. One proposed etymological origin for Baphomet is writing backward tem. o. h. p. ab, an abbreviation of templi omnium hominum pacis abbas, ‘father of the temple of peace of all men.' Levi’s drawing has been thought similar to images of the Tarot’s Devil card. Apparently a goat with a candle between its horns appears in medieval witchcraft records. A divine androgyne.
This monument stands in the Satanic Temple in Salem, MA. It was really cool to see in person and to visit this place. I received a warm and friendly greeting by the employees here and got to explore the building. Beautiful artwork, several bookshelves full of classic literature, pentagrams, and even the wallpaper was stunning. But the room with the Baphomet statue certainly stood out.
Satanism is more than likely not what you’d expect. It’s a movement for equality. It requires of its beliefs scientific evidence. It promotes empathy and justice. It is a non-theistic religion that adheres to the metaphor of the Devil as the ultimate rebel against dictatorship, ascribing to depictions such as that in Paradise Lost. It empowers the individual. It’s about freedom.
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