Imagine going to a city council meeting, and at the beginning of the meeting, hearing the following convocation:
“Let us stand now, unbowed and unfettered by arcane doctrines born of fearful minds in darkened times. Let us embrace the Luciferian impulse to eat of the Tree of Knowledge and dissipate our blissful and comforting delusions of old.”
That nearly happened, in Scottsdale Arizona, after the Temple of Satan sought the same access to city council invocations as was granted to other religious groups. Started as a trolling prank against the George W. Bush Administration’s Office of Faith-Based Initiatives, the Satanic Temple recently received “church” status from the Internal Revenue Service. Joseph Laycock is an Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at Texas State University, and he is the author of the book, “Speak of the Devil,” which documents the history and practice of the Satanic Temple. Joseph Laycock joins us now by phone.