Last updated on January 30, 2023
The Devil is many things, but if we were to simplify it, we could define the Devil in two ways, the Theological Devil and the Folkloric Devil.
In terms of the Theological Devil, we would be referring to the evil force which is so prominent in Christianity. This Devil is of their own creation, an egregore and persona that embodies everything they despise. In many regards this is Azazel the Scapegoat. If they sin, they can “blame it on the Devil”, avoiding personal responsibility completely. Most convenient.
On the other hand the Folkloric Devil is the Horned God, the Goat-Foot God of Witchcraft and Pagan history. This is the masculine embodiment of Divinity. The Devil is the Faery King, the Light Bringer and Illuminator of the Path. He is Cernunnos and Herne, and he is Pan and Pouka.
The Devil is, as I said, many many things, but he is always something to everyone. Whether that is the fear inducing Devil that opposes the Christian God, or the Guardian of the woodland animals, the Devil will always produce an emotional reaction within us. The Devil is very real.
Of course many Pagans, especially those of the Neo-Pagan and Neo-Wiccan persuasion will vehemently state that they do not believe in the Devil. That’s fine, I have no issue with that, except that I am not sure they have really examined their own Worldview (if you see this as a challenge, it is). I don’t believe in the Devil that the Christian’s invented, but I do believe in the pre-Christian Devil that embodies so many Pagan gods.
And what of Satan? To many, Satan and the Devil are the same thing. Satan and Lucifer are often the same being to such people. It all depends on Worldview and personal gnosis. My own is a little different. Satan is the Adversary and the Elemental King of Spirit. Satan is the force that brings all things into manifestation, so for me, I am the Satan, and every Magician and Witch is the Satan. We are the creators of our own realities, and to manifest those realities, we often have to oppose the mainstream thinking. We go against the grain and we rub many people the wrong way. We are the antinomians who bring about the changes within ourselves and within our own realities that we deem worthy of us. This makes me think of Jesus Christ, for those who thought the challenge was complete. The Serpent Path is never ending.
Is this different to the Devil? In my own Worldview, yes. You may disagree with me, and that’s perfectly fine, it is these differences that bring discussion, and discussion is healthy. The Devil is the All. The Devil is Wodan and the Coal-Black Smithy, forging all Life upon his Anvil. The Devil is the Path to Old Dame Fate, She that “spins without motion”, the goal being to overcome Fate, and we will hopefully come to understand the paradox of how this is achieved within the pages of this blog.