Hail Thyself

FINDING SATAN

I first discovered “Satan” at a very young age. I was misinformed by my parents and adults around me that Satan and “his minions” wanted to hurt me and kill me. As I grew older, my understanding of religion grew as well. My first brush with real Satanism was in 2009. My Army buddy told me that they were part of the Church of Satan. I looked into it a bit. I liked some of the literature, but the more I saw about the organization as a whole, the less I agreed with them.

When Sadie Satanas and I crossed paths in 2017, She revealed The Satanic Temple to me. My life felt changed. Within days I had my first copy of Anatole France’s “Revolt of the Angels”. I read it hungrily. After reading more and more about TST and modern Satanism, I knew religion had not abandoned me, but that I had stopped searching for truth and myself. The Seven Tenets resounded with me so deeply that when I read them for the first time, I wept for almost an hour. I had found it. I had finally come home.

At the time, I was geographically at odds with joining a chapter of TST though. So instead, I reached out online. I frequented forums and made plans to attend events with TST Austin. Things in my life suddenly changed and I found myself in Houston, so plans with AUstin dissolved quickly. Then I found out that Houston had a chapter! Finally, a chapter was within reach!

RITUAL

When I joined TST Houston, I was still very internalized and withdrawn from the community. I went to several book club meetings and finally, a Black Mass. At Black Mass, I met Satanists from all over, some whom I had admired since Sadie had introduced me to TST.

I was so lucky to take part in such a freeing ritual, and for such a good cause (Hot Mess Pooches Rescue and Sanctuary and Lucky Penny Rox Rescue). At one point, I was being spanked with a Bible… in front of 50 or so Christian protestors. That was before the ritual even began!

Being part of a chapter is like having a religious support group of caring humans that are not bent on praying for you. It is so freeing and empowering. A small community of individuals. Several months later, TST Houston held their last in-person ritual of 2020. It was a beautiful private ritual; “Blessing of Pazuzu”.

Shortly thereafter, Covid-19 would blanket the world and send us into lockdown. I will Blog about the novel coronavirus that has devastated individuals and families across the globe, and my personal battle with the virus at a later date.

Every morning I try to wake up and light my altar. Personal Ritual is an important part of my life. It helps me focus my day and keeps me driven and happier. While lighting my altar, I also burn incense and recite the TST Invocation or one of the Seven Tenets. Finally, I add a personal affirmation to set me on my path for the day.

Hail Satan, I am my own Master! The world is mine!

BaphoNet

From discontent with social media outlets and conversations on Twitter, the idea was formulated to create a social media website that could serve Satanists. The first reason I had was that Facebook was terrible with our data and there moderation practices are abhorrent. In one such conversation, I stated. “We should have a social media site for Satanists – We could call it ‘BaphoNet'”.

Several weeks later, Shylo Hana, a Twitter connection, contacted me personally. He asked if I would be interested in an antisocial media web server. He had my attention. Upon browsing what he had created, I let him know that I was ALL in. We discussed a lot of things, and I was chosen to be the spokeswoman.

On October 31st, 2019, BaphoNetTM was founded. It would go on to serve friends and members of The Satanic Temple to this day, as an unofficial social media alternative to Facebook. BaphoNet Antisocial Network consists of over 1,000 members and garners a following of over 4,500 and climbing.

BaphoNet extended their service by creating a server for instant chat, on DiscordTM. It has been a very popular choice for many of TST’s friends and members, with over 800 users on the server. It is always welcome to new friends and members of TST that would like to join the conversation. Take a look here! https://discord.gg/6FnGkV

The community that has come together has been humbling to me. I rarely have to step in to attempt to guide a topic from toxicity. The people I have met on BaphoNet will always be dear in my heart. They speak openly about their lives, in a safe environment and deeply discuss current events and so many other topics! They inspire me to keep doing what I do, everyday.

BaphoNet recently began selling shirts to raise funds for their platform’s future development. Their logo was designed by members of the Satanic community and is absolutely amazing. It takes center stage on BaphoNet’s official shirts. The backside of the shirt sports the number “666”. I cannot thank @DarkArtDesigns and @UnholyRosaries enough. Find them on Twitter!

There are many people that make BaphoNet work. Our server architect, Shylo Hana, lives in New Zealand. Catie and Myself live in Houston and the rest of BaphoNet’s staff live all over the globe! We have a diverse team and do our best to always have at least one staff member available to help, around the clock.

Blasphemy

I was raised into a very prayer, Jesus centric family. It was shoved down my throat at every turn. To magnify my displeasure for it, I was sent to several conspiracy therapists that were christian based. Blasphemy has allowed me to heal even more, from the wounds inflicted by the Church. Fuck god. If you want to see God, look into a goddamn mirror.

Words have always been one of my greatest assets. They have gotten me into almost as many scrapes as they have gotten me out of, however. Our words are, to a point, our most powerful and long lasting tools. We must use them well and stay true to reason. We must try to always remain within our best understanding of science.

Art has never been my strong suite. I did fairly well with geometric shapes in school, but anything outside of that was generally horrible. When I was younger I would sing. I still do, but in my shower and in front of my partners only. They are only sometimes amused. Anytime I can add some blasphemous overtones to an otherwise christian song always makes me feel more powerful. I am not anti-christian, but I am definitely post-Christian.

Have you always wanted to paint a picture of Jesus and Lazareth, doing it zombie style? DO IT! It will be fucking great. The greatest lie man has passed from generation to generation is that “god” is real. It’s a fucking power grab. Fuck god!

My Hopes Therein lie…

Community will outlast all evil. I am a Satanist. I will adapt and overcome. I will always survive. I will not back down from arbitrary authority. I will be myself, unapologetically so.

Satanism, as I have discovered through TST, is one-hundred percent MY religion. I choose to be an individual in a community of individuals. I choose to serve the missions and future of The Satanic Temple as a proud, individual community member.

My chapter is like an extended family. When times get rough, they are there. When things get funny, they probably caused it. I have grown very close and gained lifelong friends in The Satanic Temple – Houston. I look forward to continuing hailing Satan alongside my fellow chapter members. The best things we can do for our community are yet come!

BaphoNet is an ever growing community and I will Blog more about it later as well. I care about all our members very much! I cannot thank them enough for continuing to be a part of this social media exodus from Facebook and other data miners. I look forward to continuing to develop and grow with all of you. If you are interested in joining, fill out this application:

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfhXQNKaStHcBGcGTd8SmUrgH_HpZn9Jq9PEnc9nPbigLM00Q/viewform

Hail Thyself. You are the only person that can be you. Ever. Live deliciously and hail Satan! Never forget that we cannot become the bullies. Once we win a fight, or turn a tide, we have to allow change to happen. Dogpiling is just as bad as being dogpiled. We must be better. We must do better.

Ave Satanas! Vires acquirit eundo!

“Seven Sigils” Ritual

Items needed:

Eight pieces of parchment / paper

Quill or Pen

Ink (or ritual blood)

Seven candles

Ritual Bell

Incense and burner

Ritual wine / Choice drink

Your favorite ritual music playlist


*Gather members into a circle, or if online, into each member’s ritual space.*


*If alone, create a circle using your Seven Sigil candle. Enter the circle with all supplies needed for the Ritual.*

*Ring the bell. As the tone fades, the officiant will read the Invocation*


Officiant/Individual:

“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. Let us demand that individuals be judged for their concrete actions, not their fealty to arbitrary social norms and illusory categorizations. Let us reason our solutions with agnosticism in all things, holding fast only to that which is demonstrably true. Let us stand firm against any and all arbitrary authority that threatens the personal sovereignty of One or All. That which will not bend must break, and that which can be destroyed by truth should never be spared its demise. It is Done. Hail Satan.”

Participant:

It is done, HAIL SATAN!

Officiant/Individual: 

Come now, let us fulfill our senses and desires! Our bodies and minds are our own. We walk a path of our own choosing. Let no person stand in our way. Reason in all things!

*participants all light incense, start music and sip their ritual drink*


Reading of The Seven Tenets

Officiant/Individual:

The Seven Tenets are fundamental guidelines by which we aspire to live. We challenge ourselves to live deliciously and to do so within reason. Let us now recite the Seven Tenets with reasoned minds in darkened times: 

*participants will go around the circle taking turns until each Tenet is read*

*The bell will be rung after each Tenet*

I

One should strive to act with compassion and empathy toward all creatures in accordance with reason.

II

The struggle for justice is an ongoing and necessary pursuit that should prevail over laws and institutions.

III

One’s body is inviolable, subject to one’s own will alone.

IV

The freedoms of others should be respected, including the freedom to offend. To willfully and unjustly encroach upon the freedoms of another is to forgo one’s own.

V

Beliefs should conform to one’s best scientific understanding of the world. One should take care never to distort scientific facts to fit one’s beliefs.

VI

People are fallible. If one makes a mistake, one should do one’s best to rectify it and resolve any harm that might have been caused.

VII

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.


Officiant/Individual:

Sigils are personal and can be drawn to create special connections with objects or phrases. Now we shall draw our own special connections to the Seven Tenets. Each Sigil can be created in a way that is personal to you. (I recommend using a VVitch’s Ritual wheel)

If you like, you may also recreate these simple interpretations.

Aria’s “Seven Sigils”

Participant/Individual will: 

*Create a Sigil for each Tenet. Recite the Tenet aloud and light a candle. Place the candle atop your Sigil.*

*Everytime a participant finishes a Sigil, ring the bell as they light their Sigil candle*


After Sigils are Complete

Officiant/Individual:

With these Sigils we have drawn special power to each Tenet in our own heart. Let them empower you and guide you throughout your week / life. No power is stronger than our own. We will continue life in Compassion, Justice, Reason, Responsibility, Science, Autonomy and Freedom! HAIL SATAN! NON SERVIAM!

Participant:

Hail Satan! Hail Thyself!

NON SERVIAM!

*Ring bell three times*

*Extinguish all candles and incense, end music*

*clean ritual space, saving your Seven Sigils*

It is done.




*The Invocation and The Seven Tenets are part of The Satanic Temple’s religious affiliated literature. Find out more about TST here: https://thesatanictemple.com/

**I do not speak for TST, though I am a member of TST Houston. I urge all Satanists to create your own “Seven Sigils” as you learn more about TST’s religious beliefs and make them your own.

***Here is an easy link to to a Google Doc with my “Seven Sigils” Ritual!
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1PWTlIZ1lqr39PkLjGuro8edoJmkBhhZk48ScCMZuQd4/edit?usp=sharing

Back to Texas

At this point I had been active online and had made a lot of friends in my new community (LGBTQ+). One of these connections was Jaime, another trans woman. She invited me to be her roommate in order for me to get out of the situation I was in. Back in the Honda again.

Killeen

I arrived in Texas on a late summer evening. It was hot and I was very tired. Jaime helped me inside and I crashed down onto her bed. I awoke the next morning to find her gone and a note on the table. She had written, “You looked too cute to disturb, so I slept on the couch. See ya tonight, beautiful. – J-Me”.

We had a quick and very physical romance. However, it would end as fast as it had began. Once we really started talking to each other; I began realizing we could never be together. She believed the Earth is flat and that some races of human beings, should be held to different standards. I packed and left that day.

I had made a good friend and she offered her couch. Kim is easily one of my best friends. While we do not talk nearly as often as we used to, I am positive that whenever we do, it will always be like almost no time has passed. She saved my life in many ways. I can never thank her enough. I made many good memories with her, her family, and her friends.

By this time, I was on Hormone Replacement Therapy full time. I was beginning to look different and I was loving it. I was getting more attention from suitors than I ever had in the past. It was intoxicating. And it would prove dangerous for me.

The Trap

I had been working for sometime as an escort and had a few regular clients. One of them was an older gentleman, who was always very kind and very easy to please. I remember him having the cleanest place I had ever seen, even from my time in the military. What really made him stand out however, was his sweetness and willingness to help me. I told him I could never be tied down again and he agreed with me.

I moved in with Doe a few days later. He had a small apartment filled with odds and ends. It was all very tidy and well placed, but it was cramped. We had agreed that I would serve as his housewife and we would be allowed to have other relationships, so long as we informed everyone involved beforehand. I explained it to him as Ethical Non-Monogamy.

Doe was very easy to please, emotionally and physically. He just wanted company in his later years. Someone to talk to when he got home from work. Someone to rub his back and tell him what a man he was. Doe was not a very sexual man. In fact, in the 3 years we spent together, we had sex twice.

After the first 6 months in the apartment with Doe, we moved in to a small duplex. It had more room and it was very cozy. I had everything I needed. I didn’t even notice the emotional and verbal abuse at first. I didn’t even notice this man that was supporting me, was also chipping away at me each and every day.

The Trump Problem

As Donald Trump has been more flagrantly racist and authoritative, Doe would be increasingly outspoken in support of him. I would have nightly arguments with him about how Donald Trump was tearing away at LGBTQ, Religious, and Immigration rights at record speeds. He would laugh and tell homophobic or transphobic jokes and walk away. The next day he would buy me a new game or bring home some really good food. I would forget about the night before.

I told him that he would have to decide between Trump and Me. He said that he would choose Trump any day. I packed some bags and fled to a friend’s house. After making it through his body block, I tore down the road, leaving him behind.

Escape to Austin

Lily accepted me with open arms. We had a lot in common and were both going through some incredibly trying times. We were still coming into our own, with our transitions, and we were both dealing with relationship issues. The two huskies that stayed with were a big perk, however.

About a week later, Lily revealed her talent in doing tattoos. I asked her to draw me some and dictated a design for another. I loved two of them so much, I had her do them on me! One is on my right foot, the other on my left wrist. My foot has a butterfly on it and my wrist, a reminder to not end my own life.

A few weeks later there was turmoil with Lily’s boyfriend and myself. It began causing issues with their relationship and Lily’s and my friendship. I knew I had to go. I sent a text to Doe. I was coming back and he was enthusiastic…

Back in the Trap

Doe was very happy to have me back. For the first several weeks back, he stayed quiet about Trump. He showered me with things and was overall a changed man. Then, it started again. He would rant about Trump and how my being trans didn’t make me a “real” woman. My depression deepened again. I reached out to the community on Facebook.

Finding Satan

I was scrolling a Trans group on Facebook and came across a post from Sadie Satanas. I was intrigued and messaged her directly. To my surprise, she responded! She took the time to explain TST to me a bit and then sent me towards their website. I can never thank Her enough. I love you so much, Sadie!

I browsed TST’s website and I got excited the moment my eyes fell on their “Seven Fundamental Tenets”. I read them aloud and knew at that moment, I wanted to know it all. I needed to know more. I had believed in these Tenets all my life, but never seen them written before. I was home.

This new feeling of empowerment helped me be more outgoing. A lifelong atheist, Catie, took notice and reached out to me. When I finally responded, the feelings and moments that followed are indescribable.

The Soulmate

Catie is slightly older than me and about five inches shorter. She makes me laugh everyday. Our romance began in earnest when she came over for the first time to see me. I had another guest, but when they left, Catie and I hit it right off. We had both never felt this way in our lives. She wanted more for me. She wanted me away from Doe, and his abusive ways. So she invited me to leave him and come with her. I resisted at first. I was tired of running.

She came to see me, and I her several more times over a few months. Each time it was harder to say goodbye. Finally the time came when we couldn’t. We couldn’t say goodbye to each other any longer. I told Doe that it was over. I was done taking his abuse and that I was leaving. We gathered all my things and piled them into Catie’s Prius and took off towards Houston.

Catie had stayed in a studio apartment in downtown Houston, Texas at the time. It was a beautiful neighborhood and I will forever remember our time together there. Catie had two cats: Jordache and Patience, though they usually went by “Jordi” and “Boots”. We took to each other very quickly.

Caite and I got married on September 12th, 2019. I have never been happier in my entire life. Without Catie in my life, I do not know where I would be. Baby, if you are reading this, I love you!

With my move to Houston, I was able to become active with Houston TST. My first major event with them was Black Mass. It was held at a wonderful brewery in Houston, with great music and merchandise for a good cause. I remember being spanked with a Bible in front of about 60 Christian protestors. Good fuckin’ times.

Now that I was married to the love of my life, active in the Satanic community and afforded a lot of free time, I was ready to do some good! Do good, give back, anything to help this world be better.

I had finally embraced myself. I had become: Aria deSatanas!

Becoming: Diary of a Trans Woman

One of the most common questions I receive as a trans person is “When did you know that you were trans?”. I often answer this question with “I have always known” and leave it at that. While it is technically true, it leaves out the majority of the answer and story.

This is that answer and my story of “Becoming”.

The Closet

I first recognized that I was “not like other boys” when I was about seven. I had a small set of friends that I would regularly play with and we were very close. Oftentimes, we would play the classic games like: House, Cops and Robbers etc. I would always play a character that was traditionally filled by girls. I was the “Mom” or the “Damsel in Distress” and so on.

In one such instance, my parents had walked in and thought it was the best thing they had ever seen. They got us all together and took pictures. At the time, I had been wearing a dress, sun hat, costume necklaces and bracelets, and high heels that were six sizes too large. The picture was so adored, that my parents had it plastered on a coffee mug! The picture and mug have since been lost to time.

Even with all of these small affirmations of my gender, I was still very guarded with it. I was taught each Sunday that “Men being manly is godly and that they should be with a woman only. At the time, I had no idea transgender people even existed, much less that being transgender was a possibility. I just thought that I was broken, or even worse, possessed with evil.

Surrounded by Opportunity

As I got older, I internalized my feelings even more. I started creating a persona that would allow me to fit in and feel normal. I tried to fit in at church and school. I tried being the class clown, the ladies man and the reverent worshiper. Nothing stopped the feelings inside me from growing. I was in the wrong body.

The feelings inside got even worse when I discovered sexuality. A few years after the coffee mug, I had my first partner to partner sexual experience. We were both very young, awkward and unsure of what to do. I took a submissive role and that would set into motion a “structure of sexual relations” for me that would last for years.

When I was twelve, my parents decided that I needed more discipline and structure, so they arranged me schooling at a military charter school. For nine months a year of the next six years, I would be surrounded by pubescent boys in a mostly unsupervised environment. It did not take long for the experimenting to begin in earnest.

The Experiments

Within the first several weeks at St. John’s Military School, I had my first ongoing sexual partner. They were a few years older and treated me exactly as I imagined it would be like, if I were a woman. While we did not say anything about feelings or gender, I felt even more like a woman than ever after this intense beginning.

For the next several years I would have many different partners while at the school. None of these experiences were made public or even made it to the rumor mills. In fact, throughout my time at St John’s, I was seen as a “playboy”, always having had plenty of attention from the ladies in town. It wouldn’t be until after graduation that I finally had sex with a woman. It changed everything, again.

Sexuality and Gender

Now I was very confused. I was eighteen when I had my first sexual experience with a woman and I loved every minute of it. Now I could not tell if I was gay, straight or bisexual. I still had not even encountered the word “transgender”. So, I attributed everything to sexuality and did not differentiate my gender from my sexual preferences. Was I just a bisexual femboy?

I decided I should bury my “feminine side” even deeper. In doing so, I also altered my pesona even further. Now I had to try to be hyper-masculine, to make up for the fact that I did not feel masculine, but was attracted to women. I made many bad decisions and still felt as though I was only living a half life. So much of me was tucked away, deep inside.

I first discovered trans people when I was about twenty-one years old. I was in the military at the time and was both astounded and disturbed when it resonated with me. Could it be? I dove into the research surrounding transgender things and quickly came to an enlightening conclusion. I was most likely transgender.

I was stuck and confused. I had years left on my military contract and I was still married. I had no choice in my mind other than to bury this new knowledge, deeper than ever. So, I tried to ignore it and seek ways to “fix it”. I went on for years in the same, half alive way of life. Going through all the motions of being a “man” while quietly beginning new experiments in private.

Free to Change

After I was free of military service and my marriage, I knew it was almost time. I ramped up my experimenting and began acquiring a small collection of makeup, clothing and other feminine products. I still kept everything hidden, in fear that my partner at the time would find it and leave me.

Our relationship was very passionate and also plagued with deceit and secrets. I believe it was my very last attempt to be who everyone thought I was – My one last shot at living as a cis person. The day that I told her about my lifelong struggle with gender, the relationship was doomed. She was not okay with being with a trans person.

Loss

Coming out for me was not joyous at first. I lost a lot to begin my journey. In hindsight, I lost a lot less than I gained.

Immediately following my “coming out” conversation with my partner, our relationship ended. I went on to pack my things and I left within the week. In realizing I would need to reach out to family and friends, I made the announcement on social media that “I was transgender and needed a place to go”. The responses came quickly. Most of the responses were followed by the loss of contact with the responder. In fact, I lost more than half of my social connections within two days.

My family completely denied the fact that I was transgender and even wanted me to come home so they could take me to therapy. I had therapy with my parents before, not a fucking chance. Friends that I had served in the military with would no longer acknowledge me and some, actively harassed me. I was torn to pieces inside.

Gain

My cousin reached out and offered up her couch and home to me. I accepted and moved down to her place in Alabama. She enabled me to explore myself and make my very first friends as “Aria”. To this day, every friend I made in Alabama is still connected with me on social media.

Facebook would prove to be my salvation at one of the most vulnerable moments in my life. I was still very cautious with my transition and finding information on how to transition on my own was incredibly difficult. I reached out to LGBTQ support forums and trans specific groups. The response was deafening.

Within weeks of joining the LGBTQ and Trans communities, my “friend” list went from 300 people to 4,000. I had so much information and suggestions coming in that I was almost overwhelmed. I gobbled up the information hungrily anyways. Much of it would prove to be unhelpful, but a good portion of it would prove crucial to my transition. By the time I was ready to begin medical transition, my “support network” had grown to over 11,000 people and I felt truly prepared.

Hormone Replacement Therapy

Before I was allowed to begin any medication, I would have to see a therapist. I did not like, nor trust therapists. I almost decided that it was just not worth it. I couldn’t handle therapy again.

I reached out to my primary care doctor at the Veterans Affairs Medical Facility. He informed me that the therapy session was usually thirty minutes long, and that I would only need the one appointment to get started on medication. I debated this for several weeks before making an appointment.

The appointment went quite well and even settled some of the fears I had towards therapy. I was on my way to “womanhood” in my mind and had not been happier, ever. I made the appointment to see an Endocrinologist and begin the process of HRT. After several long discussions with my doctor, we decided on my course of treatment and he even alleviated some of my biggest fears. Side effects would be inevitable, but generally mild.

Patience

The first thing I noticed were the emotions. For most of my life I found it very difficult to cry, or feel really passionately about anything. Within the first few weeks of HRT, that all changed. I found myself weeping and it felt so good to finally have real tears. Thank you, science!

I had spent twenty-eight years in the “wrong body”. Basically what this means to me is that I had the wrong chemical balance in my brain and it was fucking horrible. With the chemical changes that HRT provided, I could finally “FEEL”. I no longer felt like I was living a half life, walking around numb. I was finally a whole person!

The euphoria of having emotions passed as frustration began to set in. I would look in the mirror almost everyday and see no change. Gender Dysphoria would plague me for the next two years before calming down and almost dissipating entirely.

Physical changes of HRT come very slowly. The first year on the medicine, I felt like it almost wasn’t worth it. I debated getting off the medicine because “why take something that isn’t helping”? I reached out to several trusted friends and they convinced me to stick with it. I am in their debt.

Right around the second year of HRT, my breast growth became very apparent to me. In fact, one day I woke up and looked down and remember smiling from ear to ear and thinking, “Oh, I have cleavage!”. All changes on HRT are also tied to our personal genetic makeups, my genes wanted breasts apparently.

The soreness in my boobs soared as they hit a massive growth spurt. I savored the pain, for the first time. I knew that it was normal and that it meant bigger boobs to come! My skin also began getting softer and my hair stopped growing quite as fast in unwanted areas of my body. Finally, the changes I needed were coming. I started to feel the dysphoria melting away and it felt good.

Today

I am currently over four years into my medical transition. In many ways, I am still changing and getting used to being me, all over again. I relish the challenges that are still to come and the breast soreness should it return. Overall, the changes that are coming now seem subtle and graceful.

When I go out, I still feel unsafe. I still have to worry if someone that disagrees with trans people will attack me. But, I will stand my ground. I am me. I will never go back.

Be an Ally

Trans people are under attack. Our basic human rights as trans people are in danger of changing even more. The current administration would like nothing more than to see transgender people made illegal, or illegitimate. We are seen as abominations to them. The attack is also a physical one. BIPOC trans people are targeted more than any other LGBTQ category.

If you want to be an ally, be an ally publically. If you do not know how to be an ally, I can help you there! There are many resources online to use when trying to learn how to support trans and LGBTQIA people. Here a few that I would suggest to read:

https://www.glaad.org/transgender/allies

https://lgbtrc.usc.edu/trans/transgender/tips/

https://www.thetrevorproject.org/resources/trevor-support-center/a-guide-to-being-an-ally-to-transgender-and-nonbinary-youth/

When in doubt, use non-gendered terms!

Reach Out

I am by no means an expert in transgender life, science and theory. I do have personal experiences and perspectives that I am always willing to share. I am a dedicated and empathetic listener as well. If you are interested or just want to learn more about my experiences as a trans woman, feel free to contact me!

My contact info can be found here:

https://ariadnedesatanas.com/contact/

Need help now? Try reaching out to some of these if you need someone to talk to:
(If you are experiencing an emergency, please call your local emergency services.)

18+ Lifeline
+1 (313) 662-8209 (THRIVE)

25 and Under
1-866-488-7386 (Trevor Lifeline)

Trans Specific
United States
1-877-565-8860 (Trans Lifeline)

Back East

The ride back east was fairly uneventful. I was driving towards hope and new beginnings. I was stoned the entire way, so I also don’t have much memory of the car ride itself. Maybe not the safest thing I have ever done.

Tennessee

When I first arrived in Tennessee, I moved in with an elderly veteran. I had been hired to help around the house and yard, and anything as needed. I had a small room and did my duties well.

I would have my phone out all the time, furiously texting Christy. We were in love, and it was time to tell her mother. Her mom was a powerful woman in her own, and I was extremely anxious. The talk went well and I was “accepted in” so to speak. Anytime I wasn’t needed by my charge, I would spend with Christy and her mom.

My client offered me a large bonus to help his family set up a homestead, off the grid, in a small hill country area. I accepted and we loaded up and headed out to the middle of nowhere. I was there for six weeks clearing trees and brush, digging trenches and foundations, and living life off the grid. I hated it.

After I was paid, I found another job. House Sitting. An older biker couple asked me to watch their place for 11 months. They would be there for a month at the start and end and I would offer landscaping help and such. It was my favorite job, ever.

The house itself was nestled on the side of a large lake. It had a dock with a pontoon boat, jetski and small fishing trawl. It was two sprawling stories, with a deck overlooking the backyard and lake. A hot tub sat on the deck, a grill opposite it. Inside it had a pool table, 72 inch TV, hardwood floors and more. It was grandiose.

After the owners left, Christy came and stayed with me and we took care of the house for 8 months together. It was fishing, drinking, smoking, and all kinds of fun. We even brought our kitty, Minnie Mouse. She enjoyed the time there, but tragically died giving birth the following year. I like to think she lived the best life possible at that lakehouse.

All good things must come to an end. The owners came home and I was out of a job as they no longer had the need for sitters. Using my GI Bill, I went back to school and lived off the allowance given, supporting myself and Christy for a few more months…

Coming Out

In getting comfortable with Christy, I revealed to her that I was different than most folks. I explained that my whole life I had been living in a shell. I was at the controls of the wrong body. I expressed to her that my love was genuine and unchanged, but that I could no longer live unless I changed. She was unsurprisingly, devastated. We did not make it more than a week before I was moving out.

Back in my Honda, all my things in the back, but this time I was headed south…

Alabama

I called Bree on the highway, leaving Tennessee. I told her that I had come out and had nowhere to go. She gave me her address and told me I was welcome to stay as long as I wanted to. Bree, my cousin, had never met me in person. When I got to her house, She came running out and hug-tackled me. The first question she asked me was, “So, what do I call you now?!?”. I cried in her arms right there in the yard. We went inside and got me all settled in.

I awoke the next morning to Mr. Pickles nosing about my face. He purred as I stirred and He accepted my cuddles for a time before leading me to his food dish. I got the idea. I fed the kitty and set about looking for places to stay. I had chosen one hell of a town to come out in. Montgomery, Alabama.

Over the next few weeks, I helped Bree by watching her son and keeping the house clean and stocked with food. I continued my schoolwork and started the process of getting my transition started with Veterans Affairs. Bree would help me with makeup and fashion tips in return. I found a place to stay and moved out a few weeks after my arrival.

I stayed at a house with five girls and a boy for several weeks. Three of the five girls did my makeup every other day. It was incredibly empowering, all these women around me treating me like one of the girls. I was finally there. They were all nice, and did their best to learn about gender and which pronouns to use with me.

To pay rent, I needed more than my GI bIll allowance. So, I decided I would kill two birds with one stone. For the first time, I would offer adult escort services as my true self. My very first client was a nightmare. I allowed myself to be tied up and assumed the safeword would be respected. It was not. I was beaten, raped and urinated on. Afterwards, he forced me into the car without my clothes and left me on my front lawn, naked. Not only violated, but robbed. All because I was a “dirty Tr***y who deserved this”.

I reached out for something positive. I looked to my parents and family. I came out to them and told them that I was a trans woman. They denied it and most of my family and friends that had found out, left my life. The majority have still not spoken to me since. I was falling into a dark depression very quickly.

I needed to get out of there. I had money saved, so I reached out to a friend and She was happy to have me come there. So back in the Honda I went. Everything I had left. Headed North.

Virginia

Michelle was a wonderful woman. She listened to my story and how I had come out “suddenly”. She affirmed many of my feelings and made me feel much better about myself. She was a card carrying member of the Church of Satan. We tried dating for a time but it did not work well. We did have some good times exploring the cemeteries in Virginia together however.

After things fell apart romantically, I moved into a room in an apartment with a couple as roommates. They were a nice young, “spiritual” couple. They were both CIS folks and new to the knowledge of trans people. They listened intently and acted on it! My birthday had come around and they baked a cake with my chosen name on it and then took me to get my ears pierced. They were very important to me at that time in my life.

After a few months, disaster struck. A fire had started in the apartment several rooms away and spread fast. We were evacuated out and watched as the building roared with flame. The flames were over 60 ft high at one point. We had been quick, and lucky, so most of our things were saved. Thus ended the stay with that couple.

Back in the Honda again. But where now?

Back to Texas…

The Valley of the Sun

There I was, back on the road again. Everything I owned in the backseat of the rental car. I made it in less than 2 days. North Carolina to Arizona was a seriously tough drive. I was high the whole way.

The Stay at Home

My parents welcomed me like a hero. They had banners and even threw me a party! It was like the past had no bearing. I was their Army child now. The “do-no-wrong” continued for several weeks, which reached new heights with them gifting me a Honda Accord.

I settled in and enrolled in college online with Colorado State University for sociology. With GI Bill money rolling in and college going well, I decided I wanted fun. I had been home 6 months before running into a long lost friend and almost lover.

The Long Lost Love

Rose was one of my first “dream girls”. I met her first in my math class, but only because she had come to work with her Dad, my teacher. We would send notes when she came in with her Dad and soon found ways to write and call each other.

Rose was and still is, a dancer and ballet teacher. Our first date was a traditional date, with her parents escorting us. Her mother promised to murder me if I ever hurt Rose. I was convinced.

Fast forward to six months after returning home and there she was again, at the same pool party as me. It was only a few weeks before we were living together. Love lost, love found.

We partied a lot together. I made many friends and had some great times with Rose. We talked about marriage but it would not happen. I found an apartment and moved out a few months later.

The Job

I had landed a really great job as night shift supervisor at a warehouse in Tempe, and it was consistently the best part of my life that year. I worked 2PM-12, four days a week. Six of those hours, I worked completely alone.

I smoked a lot of marijuana while I lived in Arizona. Weed was the only thing keeping my nerves still. It helped the pain, body and mind. I would take the forklift and raise myself 30ft in the air and sat on the bucket to burn a joint and jam out to my iPod.

For $22 an hour, it wasn’t a bad gig. With that income and my college, I stayed busy. I still found time to take on a familiar. Dexter was a seven and a half foot Columbian red tailed boa. (See picture). He was mild tempered and used to go on walks with me down Mill Ave. I miss him dearly.

I had made many friends and had a good job but I was lonely again. Out of the blue, I received a call from a crush in my army years. For the next few months we would stoke the fires with long calls and promises of change.

A Honda, everything I owned and the highway. This time, pointed East…

The Seven Sigils?

TENETS

The Satanic Temple is the leading Satanic religious organization in the world. Part of TST’s popularity are their religious guidelines, the “Seven Fundamental Tenets”. These Tenets resonate with people all across the globe:

I
One should strive to act with compassion and empathy toward all creatures in accordance with reason

II
The struggle for justice is an ongoing and necessary pursuit that should prevail over laws and institutions.

III
One’s body is inviolable, subject to one’s own will alone.

IV
The freedoms of others should be respected, including the freedom to offend. To willfully and unjustly encroach upon the freedoms of another is to forgo one’s own.

V
Beliefs should conform to one’s best scientific understanding of the world. One should take care never to distort scientific facts to fit one’s beliefs.

VI
People are fallible. If one makes a mistake, one should do one’s best to rectify it and resolve any harm that might have been caused.

VII
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.

The Seven Tenets are arguably morally superior to the abrahamic Ten Commandments in almost every way.

SIGILS

Recently I was chatting with a friend about “Sigils” and a thought came to me. What if The Satanic Temple had Seven Sigils that would correspond to the Seven Tenets?! I had thought of this once before, but never put any real follow up into it. This time is different.

A “sigil” can generally be defined as any inscribed or painted symbol that an individual or group assign special meaning to. For theistic Satanists, these sigils would be considered “magical”. Not to a non-theistic Satanist, like that of TST. To us, the sigil is purely artistic and psychologically empowering.

A large part of the Satanic belief system is built upon the individual. Thus, many of the rituals, symbols and/or logos, are made for us to stand on our own path, rather than follow somebody else’s. This being said, I believe we have a great opportunity to create an incredible community project. TST is a community of individuals, afterall!

The Seven Sigils

The Satanic community is filled with talented artists with different creative ways to express the seven tenets through visual iconography. I would like to see these artists all make their own versions of “The Seven Sigils” and share them with the community. Sigils can be very personal. These sigils will be each artists individual rendering of what they see when they read The Seven Tenets.

COMPASSION – A helping hand
JUSTICE – Scales and weights
AUTONOMY – Reproductive anatomy
FREEDOM – Speech
SCIENCE – Atomic symbol
RESPONSIBILITY – Reparation
REASON – Mind

My ideas are fairly simplistic, but I could draw from them to create my very own “Seven Sigils”. I urge you all to go forth and personalize the Tenets even more!

I would love to see all your wonderful Tenet Sigils! Feel free to send them to me! Be sure to let me know if you want them shared, however. I will make sure they get posted for everyone to see. It might even inspire others to create a set of Seven Sigils that are meaningful for themselves.

You can send them directly to me at AriadneSatanas@gmail.com.

Disclaimer: I do not speak for The Satanic Temple. I am a member of TST Houston and I am speaking from my own perspective.

Find more information about The Satanic Temple here: https://thesatanictemple.com/pages/about-us
“The Seven Tenets” were authored by The Satanic Temple.

The Army Years: [REDACTED] cont.

Afghanistan

It felt like an oven. The air was dry and unbearably hot. It had an Earthy taste. As I stepped off the back of the C-17, I had to turn with the wind, to spare my eyes more dust. I hated it already.

The first day was spent getting the lay of the airfield, my unit compound and the social area within the secure zone. I was assigned a room, which was just a plywood hut with a cot and window AC unit.

I was having a bad day by the time I made it to the DFAC (dining). I had arrived on a Friday, so it was “surf n’ turf” night. I had a steak, half a plate of shrimp and a lobster tail. Not bad for my first night in a hostile environment.

I settled down in my room after dinner and was just dozing off when the klaxon and sirens started wailing. I jumped up, gearing up with weapons and armor and was out the door with a minute – only to gather and get a headcount of the troops. We had been attacked by hostile mortar fire. No injuries, minimal damage.

This was my first day in Afghanistan.

Combat

Mortar and rocket fire continued regularly throughout my tour. On average, we would be attacked 5 times a week by random fire ranging from small arms to rockets.

One evening, while I was working security at the gate to our compound, a mortar struck 20 meters from my position. I hit the ground hard as the shockwave burst the glass behind me, sending a shard down into my leg. That… was a close one. The dental assistant ended up stiching me up.

Not all Bad

Our camp was highly secure. Being a Special Operations Task Force or SOTF, security played a huge part of EVERYONE’S day. It did have benefits, however. We had the best DFAC, Fitness facilities and Medical care.

We would also get special visits by celebrities. USO tours in 2007-08 were amazing. I watched Kid Rock perform and then Robin Williams did stand up. I shook his hand afterwards and he replied to each person “Thank you, you’re a bad ass!”.

Other visits included Toby Keith (had a beer with him), David Blaine (His magic trick still has me guessing) and Jon Stewart (We spoke about scorpions, the desert, women and the Afghan people).

The most notable “celebrity” meeting for me in Afghanistan however, was from a different military. Prince Harry had been coming through and we all had a chance to shake his hand.

The first trip to Afghanistan was a dynamic one for me. It had some very hard times, but also many joyous moments. Loading up into the plane home was still a major relief. I knew I would be home soon.

Back Home

Leigh was waiting for me at the hangar when I got home. It was an emotional reunion. We quickly started making up for lost time. Within a month, Leigh was pregnant.

Leigh went into labor on Valentine’s Day at 3 am. Krash was born 28 hours later. That experience was scarier than any moment in Afghanistan. We made it home 6 weeks later and I was on my way to Fort Knox for pre-mission training.

Fort Knox was a different kind of training for me. I would be learning a brand new system, outside my core MOS. I was excited and anxious. The vetting process was in depth. They even contacted my friends and family. Five weeks later, I was back on the plane.

Afghanistan, Again

This time, I was based out of a larger secure position. My tasks however, would have me flying to multiple forward positions, regularly. One such FOB, had only 2 rolls of razor wire keeping the hostile forces out. Those were some sleepless nights when I stayed there.

Just as my first trip, rocket and mortar attacks were routine. In the time I spent in Afghanistan, 5 people I knew personally, were killed in action. Many more humans were killed directly or indirectly because of my actions, all while following orders.

The Extension

When you sign a contract with the government, for military service, you can pick for how long. My original contract was 5 years, plus training. The end would have fallen halfway through a deployment. So, for a small bonus, I signed a year long extension. I owed one more year.

By the time I made it home, six months later, Leigh and I had grown apart. We tried for a time, but things were not going to work. We decided to go to court and get a divorce. It was long, and fairly ugly. In the end, we did what was best for Krash.

All in all, my time in the military is one I remember with pride or at least without guilt. There are a handful of moments I wish I could change, and even more moments I wish that I could take back. I received my honorable discharge in 2012, a decorated combat veteran.

I would never wear a uniform again. With no home to return to, I decided to head west. West to my parents, west to the valley…

The valley…

The Army Years: [REDACTED]

With money running low and our stay being ever more burdensome on Lynn’s father, I set off to Fort Jackson, SC. I would do what my parents wanted from the start. I would become a military man.

Basic Training

The intake was fairly neutral. Medical tests and some shots. Long lines formed to gather equipment and assignments. Finally, we were loaded onto buses towards our training units. I was ordered to keep my head down and be silent. I complied. Those who didn’t caught hell from the Drill Sergeants.

Right off the bus they were yelling at us. Simple, loud commands. I followed each with candor and precision. I knew full well how to act. My six years of military school were about to come in handy. Sure enough, I got the question “Who knows how to handle a guidon?” My hand shot up and I ran up and took the flag and showed my skill with it and was assigned to be it’s bearer.

Being out front allowed me to set the pace for the group, that way I would never be too tired or fall back from the group. I do love a good trick. The days were long, the training tedious. But the weekends held some respite. On sundays, we were allowed an hour for church and an hour after for prayer. Unless you were Mormon. Mormons were allotted two hours for church and one for prayer.

Naturally, I was a Mormon during basic training. One of my new friends, Katie also became a mormon for basic training. Several of the times we were at church, we would sneak to the shed out back, and we would take turns kneeling… Basic training had some ups and downs.

Running. Everything involved running. If we were outside, we ran. Marching drills were easy for me, thanks to my training in school and many times, I would get a break because of it. The break that was to be remembered however, would come in Combatives week.

Near the end of CQC week, the Drill Sergeant asked me up front to help demonstrate a new hold. He instructed me to tap out when the pain was too intense. I did not tap out. My shoulder gave out before I did. He had torn my rotator cuff, one week before the end of basic training. If i could not complete the final week, I would be forced to start it all over. I asked the doc for pain killers.

The final week of Basic training was absolutely the worst week of my life thus far. It rained everyday, and we were out in it, 6 of the 7 days. I was high on painkillers, with a sixty pound rucksack on my back, my arm in a sling. After the training, we had a final PT test (Physical Skill assessment). On the march out to the field where it was to be hosted, I lost my card several times because I was so messed up on my painkillers. The drill instructors found it amusing, lucky for me. I did over 70 pushups in under two minutes with a torn rotator cuff.

I was sore for the next 2 months… all spent as a “Hold Under”.

Advanced Individual Training

After Basic training, new soldiers are sent to Advanced Individual Training based upon their chosen assignment in the military. I had chosen Logistics. It was an overcrowded job and therefore I would have to wait for training. The wait was 83 days.

So, here I was, a new soldier fresh out of basic, on a new army base in Virginia. I had nothing to do but morning PT and to go bowling, to the movies and “make new friends”. All my new friends were ladies.

By the time training rolled around, I had made a name for myself around the place and really enjoyed my time there. I had many “partners” and learned quite a bit about logistics and military life. While there, a recruiter from “Airborne school” came and told us we could get paid extra to jump out of planes. I considered it.

Midway through training we had Christmas vacation. Instead of heading home to see Lynn and the kids, I went to New York City with a group of army buddies. Our marriage was rocky with my absence and I wanted a break from the stress of work and home. NYC was absolutely fun. I got my first tattoo in a small shop in Manhattan. I had sex on liberty island and a few subways. It is a treasured time for me.

Upon my return to training, I received a legal notice from my wife. She was filing for divorce. I read everything over and signed the papers. The divorce was finalized before I finished my training. Lynn and I are still friends, but I am not an active parent in my son’s life.

WIthout anything holding me back now, I went wild. I decided I was going all in. Airborne school would be my next challenge. I don’t need anybody or anyone. Maybe the parachute wouldn’t open…

Airborne School

Running. It’s a theme for the Army I think. Every moment from waking to sleeping is spent running in Airborne school. I would run to a training field, so we could do sprints, and then run back from the field, so we could do a ruck run. It was tiresome and irritating. It was also in Fort Benning, GA, in JULY.

It was so hot that they didn’t even bother having A/C in the barracks were we slept. I was wet the entire time I was there. We had formations twice a day for MANDATORY hydration. They would pass around electrolyte packets that tasted like actual chalk, and make us drink it with an entire 32 ounce canteen. Airborne upped my chugging game.

Jump week was exhilarating. We woke up early and strapped into harnesses and ran, or wobbled, to the aircraft hangar. We would sit in that hangar for 5 hours. It was 95 degrees and we had full fatigues, with helmet and rigged up. When we finally loaded onto the planes it was almost shocking the drop in temperature as the plane lifted us into the air.

Nothing. For just a few seconds, I was floating. As the the parachute jerked me from the trance, I got it all straightened and myself on path to the dropzone. I remember it being so quiet. Just falling through the air gently, silently. It was magnificent, right up to the point I had to land. It didn’t exactly hurt the first few times, but it was scary as hell.

After 4 jumps, and a fifth at night, I was through Airborne and all my initial military training. I was a soldier now. An Airborne soldier, headed to Fort Bragg…

3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne)

When I arrived at Fort Bragg, I was taken aback at how different it was than a training post. The Special Forces unit I was assigned to would be my unit for the next 5 years. The first day I walked in the door, I was greeted by my superior, He was not in uniform and asked my first name. None of this felt like military.

The unit was relaxed at home because when in combat or training, we would go all in. I was sent to XXXXXXXXX training and XXXXXXXXX training to prepare me for the upcoming missions, sort of a crash course to get me up to speed. During this time, I was able to stay on or off post. I had a few friends in the area so I stayed with them.

Three months later, I was married, again. Leigh was a soldier as well and she did not have any kids. We were friends prior to Bragg, but had not interacted a whole lot. We hit it off and my parents attend this wedding. It was extravagant and all my family came to it. They wanted to see their soldier marry the pretty preacher’s daughter.

A month after getting married, I was sent to XXXXX for a month of Pre-Mission Training. I had a lot of fun and learned more in that month about combat than I had in my entire life. I made many friends and even received a promotion and an award for helping balance the unit’s books. We were preparing ourselves for deployment. Two weeks after PMT, I was saying goodbye to my wife again.

This time it would be for 8 months.

The Wild Years

After the Wedding

Being banished and shunned is a very disheartening status. Family suddenly acts like the enemy and will even actively try to stop you from climbing back up. I reached out to my parents again, telling them we had no place to turn. Nothing they can do… I had made my choice.

We ended up on the couch, and eventually tent, of Lynn’s uncle. Lynn is several months along and Dawn, almost 4. The uncle was a strange individual, but mostly, just a drunk. One night he got too drunk and expressed his feelings of lust for Lynn and Dawn. We escaped in the night to a hotel for two nights.

On the day we had to check out of the hotel, I called my parents a final time. They lectured us both for over an hour including several prayers. They eventually gave us a number to a shelter owned by some friends of friends. We get there later that day and right out front, a large neon blue sign “GODTEL”.

Godtel was a ministry run shelter for families and women. Lynn was able to stay with the other women and children, but I had to go to work. I ended up with two jobs. One as a baker and the other as a shoe salesman at Sears.

For several months, as we prepared for our baby to be born, I was working 18 hours days and living in a shelter. 10% of what I made would go to the shelter off the top. My supervisor at Sears knew my situation and suggested I “look into State jobs. The government has good insurance for your kid and wife”.

TDCJ

Working in corrections was an unforgettable experience. It shattered many of my preconceptions of prison life, while also cementing others. I was hired on as a Correctional Officer after a 5-week training course. On the sixth week, I was inside a prison with three-thousand offenders.

The unit was mainly made up off non-violent criminals or lowered danger rating offenders. I always looked forward to working the protective security wing, I learned so much from some of the queens there. I witnessed fights, attempted rape, riots and death within the first year as a prison guard.

By this time, we had the money to get out of the shelter so we rented a small trailer and got the hell out. Shortly after, Lukas came into our lives. He looked just like me and was strong and healthy. I was so proud and overjoyed. I was a parent.

My parents finally came around when they received pictures of their grandchild. They flew out to visit us. They stayed for several weeks and before they left, we had a new home. My parents had cosigned a mortgage as a wedding and first baby present. Things were looking up.

The Unethical Past

Lynn and I grew apart within several months of moving into the new place. I was always at work and she would go into town and wander or be stuck home with the kids. I would make excuses not to come home, and go out with friends. She would have girls night, but be elsewhere. We both would catch each other in lies and finally openly cheated on each other.

I continued my work and ended up moving out for a time. I moved in with a girl I had met while out with friends from work. We talked of divorce and further plans and exploring different things. One of these nights was my first real threesome. At this point, Amy and I were “dating”.

She had her friend over and they ended up in the bed together, naked. I was invited in to watch and eventually join in and I had no complaints. It was awkward but also fun. Right up until Britney stopped riding me and looked Amy dead in the face and said “Is it fucked up that I can ride your partner longer than you?” with a snort. Things did not stay peaceful. Amy chased both Britney and myself out of her house with a knife.

Oops.

Be all that you can be…

At this point I knew I needed some grounding. I returned to my wife and we discussed the possibility of trying to work things out. We decided to leave the state and head for her father’s land, in Arkansas. So, off we went, Lynn, Dawn, Lukas and myself, a small Hnoda and everything we could fit.

We were in Arkansas for several months before I found a new job. This job required a lot of processing and exercise but Lynn told me it would be easy for me. She also convinced me it was my decision, not my parents.

Next stop, Basic Trainng.

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