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The Llewellyn Encyclopedia

Term: Satan


Satan: Hebrew for “accuser.” In Jewish tradition, you do not find the word by itself; rather it has the letter for the sound “ha” (meaning the article “the”) before it, clearly indicating that the name represents a position rather than a particular entity. “The Satan” could not do anything by itself, and is more like what would today be called a “devil’s advocate.”

In Christian theology, Satan became a specific entity, the representation of and cause of all that was bad, and the foe of God. Thus Christian theology became more dualistic in having a God of good (Jesus) and a God of evil (Satan) fighting over humans. This is closer to the concepts found in Gnosticism and Zoroastrianism.


Magic Provides an Alternative Viewpoint
Where in the world is magic? It is not in science, which denies the reality and value of anything not amenable to the scientific method. It is not in religion. The Church has historically looked upon magic as devilish, and in modern times regards it ...
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Witchcraft and Voodoo
Voodoo and Witchcraft are the two most misunderstood religions in the world. Each has a public image and an inner reality. Most frequently that public image has little to do with the private, inner and real religion. Voodoo Voodoo is a mixture of ...
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Black Mass
Introduction: The so-called "Black Mass" (possibly, at least initially, a literary invention) was to be performed by an ordained priest—Catholic, Anglican, or Episcopal—(in later descriptions he was supposed to a de-frocked priest). It ...
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Existentialism and Magick
"There is more to the affinity between magic and existentialism than the celebration of a common hero (Satan). The very picture of self-discovery which is painted for us in books on Hermetic Philosophy and the Cabalah can also be found in the ...
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Witchcraft: What is it?
Candles gleam. Incense smoke swirls. Robed figures, chanting in a long-dead language, whirl around a rustic wooden table. On it sit sacred images—a robust female wearing a crescent Moon on her forehead, a horned male holding a spear in his upraised ...
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The Work of the Medsen Fey - the Leaf Doctors of Haiti
Loulou Prince is the medsen fey (leaf doctor/herbalist and shaman) for a Haitian community of around 1,500 people who live in the vicinity of Jacmel, a small town close to the border with the Dominican Republic. In his daily practice, he deals with ...
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A few years ago, my youngest son was arguing with his friend about the age of Honey, our wild golden retriever. His friend insisted that Honey was five, because the dog had been alive that many years. Said Gabe, "Sometimes Honey is really one, like when he chews our shoes; sometimes he's 89, like when he pretends he's too old to listen when you... read this article
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