An Enacted Curse With Which He Damned the World

“The spirit that I have called Satanism, the spirit of unmixed hatred towards the existing World Order . . . is perhaps more rife today than it has been for over a thousand years.” 

Gilbert Murray, Satanism and the World Order (1920)

If you follow the bracing ruminations of Bruce Charlton, you are familiar with his notion that the world has crossed the hateful river and entered the stygian blackness of Sorathic evil.  Sorathic denotes that which is of Sorath, the spirit of opposition and negation in Zoroastrian theogony.  Charlton tells us that Sorathic evil hates and destroys that which is good, and that it does this not in spite of its goodness, but precisely because it is good.

Thus, Sorathic evil is radical or absolute evil.  It is not a good end obtained by evil means.  It is, rather, a performative declaration that there are no good ends because nothing whatsoever is good.  It is an enacted curse that damns the world by treating everything in it as absolutely bad.

It is evil for a man to tell a lie so that he may possess a beautiful woman, but such a man is not radically and absolutely evil because he still loves beauty.  It is evil for a man to destroy a thing of beauty to buy silly toys for his children, but such a man is not radically and absolutely evil because he still aims to do his children good.  Radical and absolute evil is not like this because it does not simply justify evil means by good ends.  It does not simply “run roughshod,” “cut corners,” and “employ methods that do not bear close examination.”

Radical and absolute evil crosses the hateful river and enters the stygian blackness where good things are destroyed for no reason other than that they are good.

This is what we mean when we talk of “senseless violence,” “wanton destruction,” or “gratuitous lies.”  Such phrases refer to an evil act that is good for nothing except the enactment of pure evil.  It was such an act of pure evil that landed Johnny Cash’s protagonist in Folsom Prison, as that protagonist acknowledges when he sings,

“But I shot a man in Reno,
just to watch him die”

He did not shoot that man in Reno to take his money.  He did not shoot that man in Reno to avenge his own honor.  He did not shoot that man in Reno to keep him quiet.

He shot that man in Reno to enact the pure evil of spilling innocent blood for no reason at all.

He shot that man in Reno to curse and damn the world!

* * * * *

The classical scholar Gilbert Murray called this Satanism and said it sprang from “the spirit of unmixed hatred towards the existing World Order.”  One can have what we might call mixed hatred towards the existing World Order, in which a love of certain good things in the world is “mixed” with hatred for certain bad things in the order of the world.  One can, for instance, love money while hating the fact that it belongs to another man.  When a man is animated by this spirit of mixed hatred towards the existing World Order, he seeks to rearrange that order by, for instance, shooting that man and transferring that man’s money to his own pocket.

However, when a man is animated by the spirit of unmixed hatred towards the existing World Order, he simply seeks to

“Burn this Bitch Down!”

* * * * *

The phrase was not original when Michael Brown’s stepfather used it at that rally in Ferguson, Missouri, nor was it used on that occasion with the full dead-end nihilism of Sorathic evil; but I think it can serve as the slogan of a man who absolutely and radically disagrees with God’s judgment on the sixth day of Creation—with a man of whom it could be said:

And he saw everything that God had made, and, behold, it was all, without exception, absolutely bad.  He therefore said, ‘burn this bitch down’ and proceeded to do just that.

* * * * *

In his lecture on the spirit of Satanism, Murray explained that a man possessed by the Satanic spirit of unmixed hatred for the world performs an act of absolute evil to curse and damn the world.  In this way he expresses his unmixed hatred of everything.  This is true nihilism.  And to express his unmixed hatred of everything, a true nihilist must destroy something that all other men recognize as good.  As Murray puts it.

“If you kill an unjust judge, you may be understood to mean merely that you think judges ought to be just; but if you go out of your way to kill a just judge, it is clear that you object to judges altogether.  If a son kills a bad father, the act, though meritorious in a humble way, does not take us much further.  But if he kills a good father, it cuts at the root of all that pestilential system of family affection and loving-kindness and gratitude on which the present system is largely based.”

* * * * *

I know no more about the Uvalde shooter than you do, but I do not think we should assume that he shot his grandmother because she did not love him.  If he was animated by the spirit of Satanism, he shot his grandmother because she loved him, and because he hated and wished to curse and damn the goodness that is love.  If he was animated by the spirit of Satanism, he likewise shot and killed the eighteen children because children are good and killing them is good for nothing.

 If he was animated by the spirit of Satanism, his act of absolute evil was an enacted curse with which he damned the world.

20 thoughts on “An Enacted Curse With Which He Damned the World

      • I think it is induced madness. The unchecked average human psyche can be quite fragile, and we lack ‘checking systems’ at large (that actually work). This is just one of the major downsides to relentless urbanization and more recent forms of thought ‘uniformication’, you can infer the rest from what has happened over the last century, but mostly last 1.5 decades. Of course there are other factors at play, a system as dynamic as current planet earth can only be guesstimated, AI crowd be damned, but significant trends and developments are still visible.

        No one ever steps into full nihilism on their own, there are ALWAYS surrounding factors. Often there are manipulative factors. This particular incident is glowing VERY brightly. We already know triple letter agencies seek out vulnerable people for certain things. Because that’s the thing JMS; you might be right about all of this, but none of it was likely to ever be on this kid’s mind. He might have been beyond self-controlled intent for a while already.

        Memes will be our friends in the near future, if only proven by the hate displayed towards them by system sycophants;

        The EU wanted to regulate memes and humor a while ago, Joe wanted a ministry of truth.
        This ‘incident’ is another declaration of intent, on several levels. Creating identity confusion (and widespread psychological problems) was always the purpose, not freedom for the few percent that truly feel they are in the wrong place.

        This seems to be a clear example of the evil that happens when good men/ women do nothing, or not enough. I have not done enough either, treated it mostly as entertainment until the sting operation started, but it’s not entertaining me anymore.

      • There are people who become radically disaffected and disposed to acts of absolute evil. What I try to do in this post is make sense of the senselessness of these acts. There are also, as you say, people who see the first sort of people as a resource they can use. I used to misunderstand psychological manipulation to mean manipulation of psychic states. I now see that it now means manipulation through exploitation of psychic states that already exist. Thus the second sort of people–the manipulators–identify the weakness in a human and put that human to use by exploiting that weakness. A simple example is controlling a vain man with flattery. The three-letter agencies no doubt attract plenty of the second sort of people, and they no doubt have uses for the first sort.

  1. As Laura says – you have correctly described my understanding of things – but the Romantic Christian bloggers (especially me, WmJas Tychonievich, Francis Berger and William WIldblood) tend to use ‘Sorathic’ to refer to the evil of pure opposition and negation of Good, and the inversion of Good, which you are discussing here.

    Perhaps a useful synonym for Sorathic evil is ‘spiteful’ – where evil is done, not for gain, but for for the satisfaction of causing harm; and this also captures its essential pettiness.

    Yet Sorathic is a kind of ultimate evil – and it underlies all other forms.

    For example ‘leftism’ is ultimately Sorathic, because it is oppositional and negative. This is how leftism can be both feminist and pursue the transagenda. These conflict if regarded as positive principles leading to a particular outcome, but leftism actually uses one ideological weapon, then another (alternating as expedient with socialism, antiracism, climate change, sexual liberation, healthism etc.), as destructive weapons directed against The Good.

    ‘Ahrimanic’ is the term we use to refer to the distinctive evil of materialism and bureaucracy, surveillance and control: The System. The Great reset and Agenda 2030. This is a ‘strategic’ evil, which includes some, mostly minor, virtues – and harnesses them to the ultimate goal of exclusion of the spirit altogether.

    But Sorathic is a more advanced form of evil, and over time (and in individuals) the Ahrimanic will tend to become Sorathic – as I think we can observe in the world today; where The System ‘gets carried away’ with the immediate short term gratifications of causing human death and suffering; and introduces contradictions into The System which destroy it.

    Thus the pandemic-response was classic Ahrimanic control, but the antiracism lawlessness that followed were Sorathic-System-destructive. The idea of breaking-up and de-Christianizing the Fire Nation, and bringing under globalist control, is Ahrimanic; but the process has been hijacked by the Sorathic motivation of Sorathic global war.

    Interestingly, in The Screwtape Letters/ S. proposes a toast; it is Screwtape who argues for the Ahrimanic long view, of maximizing the yield of damned souls, by pursuing ‘a system’ (sacrificing short term demonic gratification for longer term ‘benefit’); and the younger, immature Wormwood who is Sorathic in that he simply wants to torment and kill. Screwtape does not want war – because it is a loss of control for The System, but Wormwood selfishly welcomes war for the greater opportunities for him personally inflicting human misery here-and-now.

    To summarize: Ahrimanic evil aims at a global totalitarian state, ultimately controlled by demons; Sorathic evil does not have an aim, but tends-towards the total destruction of God’s creation and a situation of total chaos, following an escalating demonic war of each against all.

    (Of course, God’s ongoing-creation can be damaged but it Cannot be destroyed – not least because the demons are themselves part of creation – but something like that is the desire or fantasy of the most evil demons. As long as there is Good spitefully to be subverted, destroyed or inverted, the Sorathic demons are not concerned about where the process is going, or its ‘contradictions’.)

    BTW – The Sorathic/ Ahrimanic – and also Luciferic – schema for describing and classifying types of evil has been derived-from Rudolf Steiner; but has been substantially – indeed fundamentally, at the metaphysical level – adapted.

    • I like your characterization of Sorathinc evil as spiteful. This ties it neatly to the pervasive ressentiment in our world. I mean the pervasive idea that men and women are put into this world to take revenge. They rationalize their spirit of revenge by appeals to some past crime or present indignity, but I believe they felt the spirit before they knew of the crime or the indignity. A great deal of contemporary culture is just rationalizations for acting on this spiteful spirit of revenge.

      I am not given to petty spite, but I have by examination of conscience discovered a healthy vein of what we might call deep spite. What I mean is that I don’t for the most part “pay back” insults and injuries, but that I could be said to have built indignation into the foundation of my life.

      I think Ahrimanic and Sorathic evil are easily combined, and that they very likely become more potent when combined. There is no spite like bureaucratized spite. An individual can forgive, forget, or simply grow tired of taking revenge. An individual whoo sooner or later die. But a spiteful bureaucracy will never forgive, never forget, never grow tired, and never die.

    • Speaking as a former leftie, I don’t see how leftism is necessarily pure evil. For many or most, it begins with a longing for actual justice for actual poor people, or actual freedom for actual oppressed people. I’ve seen it turn to the kind of pure evil, hating the good for the sake of hate, but in the beginning it starts out of some kind of longing for justice.

      Our (ACNA) priest has talked with me about this at some length. I guess being a priest in a church which is basically Episcopalian but orthodox and non-insane, you get to meet a lot of people who are trying to figure out how the heck they wound up with such a bunch of heretic so & so’s. It looks to me like a lot of people are fleeing the left. I’ve realized I’m far from the only one. A lot of us still recognized the good and realized that the left has left that behind and so we left the Left.

      Are you saying, for example, that George Orwell was just pure evil? The man was a socialist trying to stop the corruption of socialism. Was he evil?

      • The problem comes from making justice the only value, and from making justice synonymous with equality. Almost all humans have a sentiment for justice and are thus moved to anger by injustice. But the sentiment for justice appears to be the only sentiment that moves some leftists, and this is why they create worlds that are ugly, joyless, and unfree. Another problem with overvaluing justice is that the promise of absolute justice attracts freeloaders who assume that they will receive more in a “just” world. Many poor people who demand justice would receive less in a truly just world. The sentiment they depend on is mercy.

      • I’m not really sure current leftism can even be compared with what it used to be a few decades ago. As much as i hate the political paradigm at large and believe in an approach that boils down to;

        ‘whatever works best locally, most of the time, while providing certain bits of infrastructure and organization, and sometimes taking care of people under fairly serious scrutiny – while ALWAYS facilitating and never mandating or ordering outside of the most dire emergencies’

        Not really sure how to describe that within the ‘current spectrum’ which is honestly a pre-constructed binary sandbox for political thought. The last part of my little quote is where things go wrong, repeatedly and structurally.

        The idea of a government BY the people FOR the people is comatose at the moment, and the ‘old left’ recognized this, but the new version wants to fix it by doing more of the exact same things that got us here. Two cents.

  2. @lea – an alternative hypothesis is just as disturbing: our society generates so much surplus that you can be a listless teenager with a nametag job at Wendy’s, buy a $5,000 arsenal, and hop in your grandparents’ $50,000 truck to go kill 19 children and 2 women after your weekly routine of playing video games and smoking weed. Then your waste of a mother (with no father in sight, and probably not even alive) apologizes for your oxygen thievery.

    Where did this non-intact family’s money even come from? Grandpa is a convicted felon and says he’s not allowed to be in a house with a firearm. I’m reminded of the Columbine killers who put together a fire team armory in a garage without their alienated, workaholic parents’ knowledge. By the way, their high school had a parking space reserved for a star football player’s custom Humvee, at his parent’s request.

    Remember Sandy Hook? Neotenous young adult kills mom and goes off to slaughter her students. When the reporters figure out who he is, they head for dad’s house, where he’s already throwing the suitcases and the second wife in the car and flooring it out of his driveway. What did he know? I don’t think anybody ever asked and he’s not telling.

    We’re prosperous beyond any point in human history, and no longer fear God much less believe in Him, so the society is going insane.

    Over at the Burning Platform, Jim Quinn is feeling kind of grumpy too. Happy Thursday, everyone.

    • Update: the father, Salvador Ramos, Sr., is alive, absent, and also insisting his monstrous son isn’t a monster.

  3. Perhaps there is a deeper GOOD that God requires. I can say that I am good, and by our current standard, I believe that to be true. I also understand that I am primarily verbally opposed to evil, but not obviously materially, given that I live amongst evil without any real opposition. I speak about it, and when it almost invariably falls on deaf ears, shrink back into my own existence, which is plenty busy with material issues in my somewhat complicated life. By doing so, Evil remains effectively unchecked and grows, proving once again that the only requirement for Evil to prosper is for Good men to do nothing. I am Good; I am also failing miserably, and were I to be measured in the balance, would be found lacking. God expects more than luke-warm goodness. Maybe our coming suffering will kindle a true fire. God, I hope so….

  4. Confront Evil after recognition rather than leaving it at that and remaining content that Evil has been identified. Details will vary for individuals/groups. Opportunities abound. Militancy is not required, as evidenced by Jesus, but then if militancy is required, so be it and God help those crusaders. Evil does not limit itself in its persuit of Good’s destruction, and actively opposing Evil does not make Good less so.

    Again, not going further than identification is frequently due to concern for personal losses in our life of ease; this is decadence, of which I am wholly guilty, and am not alone.

      • Probably no different than when it’s 5 times your size. If God is on the side of Good, what does it matter? Did Jesus die in vain? If not, no further discussion needed. If so, then it’s simply a matter of survival of the fittest, and passivity is hardly an option for either survival or for self-respect.

        Evil doesn’t fight back, it attacks, as should be most evident by the history of the West, most obvious today to those with even a modicum of perception. Evil was given a chance to “come to Jesus” by the Good Christians and look at them now. Good must fight back, one way or another.

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