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Two-Hundred Bucks?! That's a bridge Too Far!

 When I was a broke college student, I discovered the little black book that spoke to me better than any other tome. Wanting to know more about this idea of Satanism, I began to do more research as I browsed the recesses of the internet to search for more information. Luckily, I found the official Church of Satan website, or else I might have ended up congregating with some devil-worshiping kooks! 
    It was a no-brainer that I wanted to affiliate. When I discovered that doing so required understanding the Satanic Bible and paying a (at the time) two-hundred dollar fee, it all interlocked. The obsidian dominos of hell began to topple and fall into place. There was just one problem–the keyword I mentioned earlier was “broke.” I had empty pockets that, if you unfurled them inside out, the flies residing within would have been more than happy to escape, gasping for air and laughing at the expense of my poverty. To add insult to injury, I also did not have a proper mailing address, considering that I was still residing with my ultra-religious family. Having any sender with the number “6-6-6” in their address would have been not only enough reason to sound the ecumenical alarm but warrant ripping open my parcel (mail-based laws be damned) to find out that I have been cavorting with “the devil.” 

    Since I would have had no place to go, living on the streets in a dangerous neighborhood was out of the question. I went the extra mile to scrounge up money over time, not only for the membership fee but also for a P.O. Box. And after that, I tried my best to ensure that the various pins and needles were not poking my ass as I waited in anticipation. When the card finally came, a big swell of pride filled me as a dumb-ass smile was painted across my face. The money spent was worth it. 

I look back on this and sometimes think, what is the whole hubbub about spending two hundred bucks on a membership? I ask and am writing this because, even to this day, I sometimes get some folks who are jiving with Satanism to say, “Yeah, Satanism is cool, but I, like, don’t understand, man, why the two hundred dollars? That’s a bit high, man.” I cannot help but have the image in my mind of this person slumped over with their finger in their nose while they are saying such things, drool slowly dangling from their mouth as they utter (at least in my opinion) something so silly. 

I was dead broke when I registered, yet I could do it. Why? Because I have found value in it. Plain and simple. And unlike a lot of other organizations, the money I have given the Church of Satan has been a great return on investment. For one, the Church of Satan has been a great networking avenue, for without it, I would not have gotten my first book published, which has opened doors to other literary endeavors outside of the church. I could drone on and on about how happy I am at that turn of events, but you get the picture. 

Aside from writing career endeavors, the Church of Satan has also had very enriching personal returns. Because of my involvement, I have met some truly outstanding individuals who are now some of my closest friends. I sometimes get all toasty inside and cherish them deeply when I think of it. Those reading this know who you are, and I am more than happy to move ever forward, shoulder to shoulder, with you. And if it were not for membership, I would not have known, let alone be invited to some of the most fun shindigs, hootenannies, hoedowns, and parties that only the children of hell could throw. Oh, and my first ritual–I can’t forget about that. 

However, speaking to those who believe two hundred simoleons is too much to fork over, I am in a generous mood, so that I will ask you this. How many things have you spent money on in hopes of a good time, only to be let down? For the gamers in the crowd, how often have you spent sixty or more dollars on a hyped-up game only for it to be a dismal disappointment? How about the concertgoers ready to have a good time only to be greeted by a lackluster show? (think of the various musicians who show up late or are drunk) Concert tickets aren’t cheap, I should know. I spent a pretty penny on a Ghost concert, but looking back, I have had a much better time hanging out with my friends, as mentioned earlier, on Discord

If spending money on lackluster experiences is something you can do, then how come something that could bring you joy and connect you with the religion that speaks to you on such an intrinsic level is a bridge too far over a small financial expense? This is not to say that you need to join to be a Satanist, but a lot of these folks who are hung up over the fee are looking to be given a freebie by the church. Well, tough noogies, as the saying goes, “there’s no such thing as a free lunch.” I don’t tolerate parasites who whine about money, so why should the church? As for me, it was the best two Benjamins I have ever shelled out, and I have not looked back. 


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