Where to begin… The only logical place to start is at the beginning, so I am going to take you back several years, to my first encounter with The Satanic Temple.
Let me set the stage first:
It’s 2017 and I am freshly out as a non-believer. I had participated in a lot of LGBTQ+ activist groups and had garnered a large following [13k] underneath the pseudonym “Kim Possible”. While scrolling through the posts in one of these LGBTQ+ groups, I stopped on none other than a post authored by “Sadie Satanas”. I sent a direct message to her and it would lead to her introducing me to TST’s Seven Tenets and Lucien Greaves’ work.
At this point, I dived head first into every Satanic book I could find while simultaneously attempting to join the Austin Chapter of TST. Due to my distance, it made meet-ups hard, so I never officially joined. At this point, the desire for TST’s members’ perspectives on Satanism and the seven tenets was almost uncontrollable. My curiosity was piqued by the mystery, imagery and content being put out, publicly.
I moved out of an abusive situation and made my way to Houston, TX where I attended my first in person TST event. It was a book club meeting and I felt unwelcome [my perception] the first several times I attended these. I finally [3 months later] was considered for membership in TST Houston and voted in [with Joy], just prior to the 2019 Black Mass at Brash Brewery. The Black Mass was empowering, but I volunteered to sell shirts for the chapter throughout, so I missed a good portion of it.
Raising funds for LGBTQ+ centers and helping to fund animal shelters is why I stayed with TST Houston for a year. Midway through my tenure, I helped co-found BaphoNet Antisocial Network, without any prior approval. I was reprimanded and warned sternly that I was to make sure that BaphoNet did not attempt to speak in any official capacity for TST, which I assured them it would not. It has not to this day.
After some further disagreements with the leadership of my chapter and the poor handling of the mediation process by TSTs HR branch, I was led to one conclusion: I wanted out. I sent a formal letter of resignation and asked it to remain quiet. It did not. The very next day I was informed by many folks about how I had been “kicked” from my chapter.
Some time passed and I still kept supporting the efforts of TST as an individual because I truly hold the Seven Tenets in high regard as a philosophy for living a good and deliberate life. Ada King, Director of TST’s new Virtual Headquarters affiliate, reached out to me and asked if I would like to join the team and get away from “all the drama”. With hopes of having a chance to make a positive impact and change, I accepted wholeheartedly, if not somewhat blindly.
I worked with TSTVHQ, as an unpaid volunteer [by choice], for 5 months. I put in approximately 900 hours of unpaid volunteer work to help provide the Satanic community with a place to feel socially connected, get educated and to feel less isolated during this pandemic. Throughout the tenure, I received ZERO written warnings about any content I was posting and only had positive feedback from the TSTVHQ team that I worked with.
All of us signed Non-disclosure agreements and a code of conduct, including the Director, Ada King. So much of the reasons behind my termination are still a mystery to me. I find it hard pressed for Ada King to find any real evidence of violations, except for one that I admittedly made, POST-termination.
Three days prior to my termination we had our regular TSTVHQ meeting and all seemed normal, aside from Ada King leaving way through the meeting to not return. The next day I spoke to Ada, privately to check on her and revealed that my Coven, which was first formed in November, had finally codified it’s Ethos. As it was a personal conversation, NONE of it is covered by NDA. I even said, somewhat jokingly at the time, “If Coven of Satan is an issue with the CoC, I will resign from VHQ, as to not cause an issue.”
I am led to assume that THIS is the actual reason Winstonian Enterprises [TSTVHQ] let me go. This was the final blow from TST for me, an organization in which I felt was built on Seven Tenets, not hypocrisy and ego. The Seven Tenets will ALWAYS be held close and dear to my heart, and it is in the very spirit of the Seven Tenets that I choose to publicly renounce my membership with TST.
Until I perceive that the structure of TST and the elected and non elected leaders show that they too, hold the Seven Tenets dear to their hearts and minds, I will separate myself entirely from the organization and its affiliates. Satanists of TST, if you read this and wonder if I hate you or no longer want to be a part of your community, you are misinterpreting this. This is MY decision to leave TST, not to leave Satanism and the Satanic community.
Satanists can hang out and be friends without being in the same organization, or part of any organization whatsoever. I love many of you and would like nothing more to continue our friendships. However, if you are afraid to: remain friends with someone that dissents or to speak out and speak your mind in fear of reprisal from your Church or it’s leaders, you are in a cult.
“TST promotes benevolence and reason with compassion. They promote nobility in action and thought.” Often, the failings of the few in charge, make this message sour before it even has a chance to be effective. TST’s International Council, Chapter leadership structures, NDAs, defamations lawsuits, schism after schism have shown a definitive history of abuse or at best, mismanagement.
Where is the learning process? Why are these things repeating, over and over?
“People are fallible. If we make a mistake, we should do our best to rectify it and resolve any harm that may have been caused.”
“One should strive to act in accordance with reason”.
“Every tenet is a guiding principle designed to inspire nobility in action and thought. The spirit of compassion, wisdom, and justice should always prevail over the written or spoken word.”
Are these just hollow, empty words only designed for legal cases? Or are these part of a beautiful and inspiring set of guidelines than when truly aspired to with dedication, can achieve a greatness in self?
I obviously am very hurt. I feel used and moreover, betrayed by someone that acted like a true friend and then suddenly stopped. Some of my personal feelings coming through in my writing today are because of a NON-related issue that happened on the same day that I received the email that coldly stated my termination from TSTVHQ. Shortly thereafter, a call from a more compassionate person, informing me of my removal from the TSTTA initiative was just the icing on the entire cake of shit.
There of course, will be a few different sides told about this but I implore you, all ye reasoning and critical thinking Satanists abroad: Do not blindly listen to rumor or conjecture. Do your own research. Reach out to folks that you hear rumors about and confront them, like adults. Creating rumor and spreading it is so basic, and should be remedied quickly by factual information, with supporting evidence.
I am no longer a member of The Satanic Temple.
Enough has been said. I am moving on with my life and down my Left Hand path with a continued voice against tyranny, injustice and oppression.
De Oppresso Liber, NON SERVIAM.
Dr. Aria deSatanas
Coven of Satan, Elected Coven Prime
BaphoNet Antisocial Network, Cofounder