Satan in The Secret Doctrine and Theosophy

As to the original conception of Sat’an, his traditional role is being an accuser in the court of god. The creation of an anthropomorphic God required the invention of an anthropomorphic Satan.

Satan means adversary, and there is no evidence that the adversary was considered a literal force or anthropomorphic god that opposes Sat’an יְהֹוָה to the extent made in the popular imagination and interpretations. Sat’an is an attorney in the court of God, one of the Bene Elohim בני האלהים, an angel of God, whom God sends to tempt man in its original context. It is forbidden to therefore curse Sat’an, according to the Talmud.

The idea of two opposing powers comes from the Zoroastrians, which itself is however not a dualist religion. God is made to say in Isaiah: “I form light and create darkness, I make weal and create woe; I the Lord do all these things” (Isaiah 45:7). The Persian idea is strung throughout the New Testament with its reference to rebellious daivas.

Section i.


According to H.P. Blavatsky, SATAN, a concept held by other ancient nationalities, “is one of the most profoundly philosophical and ideal conceptions of ancient thought” (The Secret Doctrine, Vol. 2., pg. 233).

The cause for good and evil lies in the necessity of contraries and contrasts, something inherent due to the nature of MATTER itself.

LUCIFER is associated with Libertas & Phanes (“First-born” radiation):

“Esoteric philosophy admits neither good nor evil per se, as existing independently in nature. The cause for both is found, as regards the Kosmos, in the necessity of contraries or contrasts, and with respect to man, in his human nature, his ignorance and passions. There is no devil or the utterly depraved, as there are no Angels absolutely perfect, though there may be spirits of Light and of Darkness (†see James Tabor, Do Angels and Demons Exist); thus Lucifer — the spirit of Intellectual Enlightenment and Freedom of Thought — is metaphorically the guiding beacon, which helps man to find his way through the rocks and sandbanks of Life, for Lucifer is the Logos in his highest, and the “Adversary” in his lowest aspect — both of which are reflected in our Ego. Lactantius, speaking of the Nature of Christ, makes the Logos, the Word, the first-born brother of Satan, the “first of all creatures” (Inst. div. Book II., c. viii., “Qabbalah,” 116.)” (The Secret Doctrine, Vol. II, pg. 62.).

She states on page 507:

“Yes, indeed; it is this grandest of ideals, this ever-living symbol — nay apotheosis — of self-sacrifice for the intellectual independence of humanity; this ever active Energy protesting against Static Inertia — the principle to which Self-assertion is a crime, and Thought and the Light of Knowledge odious.”

This is referring to metaphysical properties, elements, etc.


Concerning the dual principle of Good and Evil in The Secret Doctrine, Satan, the principle of Evil, or the Shadow of Light, is also called Logos, or Wisdom, from the highest metaphysical standpoint, i.e., absolute Non-BeingThe Logos is Light and Wisdom (Sophia, or Dharma), according to the Ophites and Valentinian Gnōstics under Ennoia and Ophis — the Serpent, basically the Adishesha (Ādi Śeṣa) of India. It is represented as dual-natured, but so long as there exists manifested worlds. So long as there exists manifested worlds, the One Unity manifests as dual principles — Good and Evil; centripetal or centrifugal force; negative or positive; advantageous and disadvantageous, &c.


The spirit of duality in man and matter is explained again:

“The holy “Airyaman,” “the bestower of weal,” invoked in the prayer called Airyama-ishyo, is the divine aspect of Ahriman, “the deadly, the Dae of the Daevas” (Farg. xx., 43), and Angra Mainyu is the dark material aspect of the former. “Keep us from the Hater, O Mazda and Armaita Spenta” (Vendidad Sadah), has, as a prayer and invocation, an identical meaning with “Lead us not into temptation,” and is addressed by man to the terrible Spirit of duality in man himself. (…)” (ibid., 517)


“Thus, esoteric philosophy shows that man is truly the manifested deity in both its aspects — good and evil, but theology cannot admit this philosophical truth. Teaching the dogma of the Fallen Angels in its dead-letter meaning, and having made of Satan the corner-stone and pillar of the dogma of redemption — to do so would be suicidal. Having once shown the rebellious angels distinct from God and the Logos in their personalities, the admission that the downfall of the disobedient Spirits meant simply their fall into generation and matter, would be equivalent to saying that God and Satan were identical. For since the Logos (or God) is the aggregate of that once divine Host accused of having fallen, it would follow that the Logos and Satan are one. Yet such was the real philosophical view of the now disfigured tenet in antiquity.” (The Secret Doctrine, Vol. 2., pg. 515)

“In this, Christian theology, although following slavishly in the steps of Paganism, was only true to its own time-honoured policy. It had to isolate itself, and to assert its authority. Hence it could not do better than turn every pagan deity into a devil. Every bright sun-god of antiquity — a glorious deity by day, and its own opponent and adversary by night, named the Dragon of Wisdom, because it was supposed to contain the germs of night and day — has now been turned into the antithetical shadow of God, and has become Satan on the sole and unsupported authority of despotic human dogma. After which all these producers of light and shadow, all the Sun and the Moon Gods, were cursed, and thus the one God chosen out of the many, and Satan, were both anthropomorphised. But theology seems to have lost sight of the human capacity for discriminating and finally analysing all that is artificially forced upon its reverence. History shows in every race and even tribe, especially in the Semitic nations, the natural impulse to exalt its own tribal deity above all others to the hegemony of the gods; and proves that the God of the Israelites was such a tribal God, and no more, even though the Christian Church, following the lead of the “chosen” people, is pleased to enforce the worship of that one particular deity, and to anathematize all the others.” (ibid., pg. 507-8)

It is easy to disfigure vague expressions written in dead and long-forgotten languages, and palm them off as truths and revealed facts on the ignorant masses. The identity of thought and meaning is the one thing that strikes the student in all the religions which mention the tradition of the fallen Spirits, and in those great religions there is not one that fails to mention and describe it in one or another form. (…) Typhon the Egyptian, Python, the Titans, the Suras and the Asuras, all belong to the same legend of Spirits peopling the Earth. They are not “demons commissioned to create and organize this visible universe,” but fashioners (the “architects”) of the worlds, and the progenitors of man.” (ibid., pg. 515-517)

Despite this attempt, there existed sects called Luciferians and Lucianists that is mentioned: “The Luciferians§ — the sect of the fourth century who are alleged to have taught that the Soul was a carnal body transmitted to the child by its father; — and that other religious and still earlier sect of the second century A.D., the Lucianists, who taught all this, and further, that the animal Soul was not immortal, were philosophizing on the grounds of the real Kabalistic and Occult teachings.” (Blavatsky, The Secret Doctrine, Vol. 2., fn. pg. 239).


Theosophists divide this WISDOM into two categories — Holy WISDOM and Lower (or terrestrial) WISDOM. Blavatsky had said in the very book she has been accused of S a t a n i s m on the Pentagram:

“The esoteric symbol of Kali Yuga [the Dark Age] is the five-pointed star reversed, thus image_il — the sign of human sorcery, with its two points (horns) turned heavenward, a position every Occultist will recognise as one of the “left-hand,” and used in ceremonial magic. It is hoped that during the perusal of this work the erroneous ideas of the public in general with regard to Pantheism will be modified” (Helena P. Blavatsky, The Secret Doctrine, Vol. 1., pg. 5).

In this occult view rulers of nations engage in all things contrary to the WISDOM, because engaged in nature’s law of the struggle for life. From the view of Physics, Biology and Chemistry, we live in a world pervaded by MATTER, in which that interminable and cyclical struggle of birth, death and transition occurs between all living things.

“The “dynasties of the kings” who all regard themselves as the “anointed,” reigning “by the Grace of God,” whereas in truth, they reign by the grace of matter, the great Illusion, the Deceiver.” (Helena P. Blavatsky, The Secret Doctrine, Vol. 2., fn. pg. 233).

The secret god of the m y s t e r i e s is not Satan in the Biblical sense, because it is defined exactly what she describes Satan to be, based on especially, not just Biblical literature but what people believe, meaning Satan is associated with “Abstract Evil”. The propensity towards evil originates from the thought of man, which is vaguely associated with what Lucifer is, as the blessing and curse of the mind and conscience, struggling between its celestial and terrestrial nature entangled in MATTER. The “secret god” in defining the G.A.O.T.U. of the Masons or Theosophists is not their Baphomet, a constructed image from pieces of folklore and culture. Blavatsky is pointing to ancient schools, whose teachings make classical scientific claims about the nature of reality, central to the Indian atomists, and this is the Aniyamsam aniyasam, “the most atomic of the atomic,” the concealed deity, or the One, the Sanskrit terms Anu. When Catholics therefore, have ignorantly and conclusively defined the Theosophical position as Pantheist, they ignore the entire point and argument of proposing this principle to permeate every atom. This is just one aspect of the Theoretical side of Occult Philosophy. All one should know is that fundamental position to defeat charges of Satanism.

“Reject the explanation of the Secret Doctrine and the whole Pentateuch becomes the abomination of abominations. Therefore, do we find Jehovah, the anthropomorphic God, everywhere in the Bible, but of AIN SUPH [Ein Sof, the numberless and inconceivable] not one word is said. (…) So true is this, indeed, that the authors of the New Testament who had to blend their system with both the Jewish and the Pagan, had to borrow their most metaphysical symbols not from the Pentateuch, or even the Kabala, but from the Âryan astro-symbology.” (Helena P. Blavatsky, Kabalah and the Kabalists, Lucifer, May, 1892)

ARYAN, referring to Persian & Indian influences preceding them.

Maybe, religious politicians should never say, “God Bless our country,” while they war against one another in the next breath. This should be taken very seriously. In the early conceptions, S a t a n is actually employed by God as an attorney of God who tests men. Therefore, the chain of causality — the fates of nations, and dynasties of royals, etc., are not in the good graces of God, but in the graces of matter (the illusion), through which the divisiveness born from our Thought, that we stir and war against for — each in the name of the jealous gods.

Section iii. Conclusion

So, to explain it from a philosophical standpoint, Satan, Anna Kingsford states, is the “god of this planet.” This planet being the earth, the physical p l a t o s ruled and soaked through and through by the cosmic substance, of MATTER and ANTI-MATTER. The attributes SATAN is referred to be and believed in by theological Christianity, is believed to be the inverse of Deity; and in allegories of antiquity, is known as the adversary, i.e., the deceiver, or “i l l u s i o n.” It is the one principle inversed, or manifested in the World. It is still highly possible to gauge the truth of what Blavatsky is explaining, and which we know. Those who perhaps actually worship SATAN, may come not to know that they err in their fantastical belief in a basically reversed Christianity, but come to the esoteric knowledge of the lower KNOWLEDGE, regarding the Astral MATTER. Blavatsky explains that humanity can overpower the effects of evil, by practicing and living holy lives, so she is not ignorant of the dangers of the lower.

…Blavatsky can hardly be accused of condoning it either.

“There is a personal God, and there is a personal Devil!” thunders the Christian preacher. “There is no personal God, except the grey matter in our brain,” contemptuously replies the materialist, “and there is no Devil.” Between Science and Theology is a bewildered public, fast losing all belief in man’s personal immortality, in a deity of any kind, and rapidly descending to the level of mere animal existence.—HELENA P. BLAVATSKY.


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