[Milton-L] Satanic Monument Next to Ten Commandments

Jameela Lares jameela.lares at usm.edu
Mon Dec 9 15:47:43 EST 2013


I would have difficulty linking "selfless" and "Milton's Satan." Self-deluded, maybe. 

Jameela Lares
Professor of English
The University of Southern Mississippi
118 College Drive, #5037
Hattiesburg, MS  39406-0001
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601 266-5757 fax
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From: milton-l-bounces at lists.richmond.edu [milton-l-bounces at lists.richmond.edu] on behalf of Hannibal Hamlin [hamlin.hannibal at gmail.com]
Sent: Monday, December 09, 2013 2:29 PM
To: John Milton Discussion List
Subject: Re: [Milton-L] Satanic Monument Next to Ten Commandments

I regret there's no picture of the proposed monument to Satan. The Satanic Temple, however, seems straight-up and has a substantial website: http://www.thesatanictemple.com/. I'm intrigued by their statement of belief:

"The Satanic Temple seeks to separate Religion from Superstition by acknowledging religious belief as a metaphorical framework with which we construct a narrative context for our goals and works. Satan stands as the ultimate icon for the selfless revolt against tyranny, free & rational inquiry, and the responsible pursuit of happiness."

This suggests Milton's Satan, rather than the biblical-traditional one, is really at the center of their self-conception. Is the desire to separation Religion from Superstition and the acknowledgment of the metaphorical (think of the Eucharist) really so far from Reformation theology?

Hannibal





On Mon, Dec 9, 2013 at 11:56 AM, James Rovira <jamesrovira at gmail.com<mailto:jamesrovira at gmail.com>> wrote:
Gregory:

I suspect he's living out Anton LaVey's parable in The Satanic Bible:

One day, one man said to another man on the street, "I will give you the secret to lifelong happiness, prosperity, and power if you hand over to me all the money that you have in your wallet right now." The second man, surprised, quickly handed over his money, and then first man leaned forward and whispered into his ear, "There's a sucker born every minute."

We should let them pay to erect a useless monument so what we can laugh at them for laughing at us for allowing them to pay quite a bit of money to erect a useless monument.

Jim R


On Mon, Dec 9, 2013 at 11:50 AM, Gregory Machacek <Gregory.Machacek at marist.edu<mailto:Gregory.Machacek at marist.edu>> wrote:
I take it the Satanist representative is being tongue-in-cheek when he says the following:

"We believe that all monuments should be in good taste and consistent with community standards," Greaves wrote in letter to state officials. "Our proposed monument, as an homage to the historic/literary Satan, will certainly abide by these guidelines."

I'll admit I don't know anything about serious modern-day Satanists, but it would seem to me that either 1) their monument should not be in good taste and consistent with community standards (i.e. be the negation of those) or 2) the "community standards" he references are, a la Young Goodman Brown, the actually Satanic ones in a professedly Christian community.

I'm trying to get at Greaves' tone in this quote.



Greg Machacek
Professor of English
Marist College


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To: John Milton Discussion List <milton-l at lists.richmond.edu<mailto:milton-l at lists.richmond.edu>>
From: John K Leonard
Sent by: milton-l-bounces at lists.richmond.edu<mailto:milton-l-bounces at lists.richmond.edu>
Date: 12/09/2013 11:30AM
Subject: Re: [Milton-L] Satanic Monument Next to Ten Commandments


Interesting that the Satanists want to erect their monument as "an homage to the historic/literary Satan" (quotation from Jeffrey's link). I don't know what the Satanists mean by "historic," but I think I can guess just which literary Satan they have in mind. They have good taste, but why not raise a monument to Satan's creator (literary creator)? I'd be all for that, especially on this day.

John Leonard

On 12/09/13, Steve Fallon <sfallon at nd.edu<mailto:sfallon at nd.edu>> wrote:

Hi Jeffrey,

I'm glad that you liked the photo.  I'm embarrassed to say that I didn't think of the date until I saw the message below.  Thanks for making sure I didn't miss Milton's birthday!

And thanks for the marvelous hospitality at the recent NEMS.

All the best,
Steve

Stephen M Fallon | U. of Notre Dame | John J Cavanaugh Professor of the Humanities |Professor, Program of Liberal Studies and Department of English | 356 O'Shaughnessy Hall | Notre Dame, IN 46556 | Tel: 1.574.631.6598<tel:1.574.631.6598> | pls.nd.edu<http://pls.nd.edu/>, english.nd.edu<http://english.nd.edu/>



On Dec 9, 2013, at 10:41 AM, Shoulson, Jeffrey wrote:

Perhaps some of you have already seen this article about a group of Satanists who, following the precedent set by their Christian counterparts in Oklahoma in erecting a monument to the Ten Commandments outside the state capitol, want to build their own monument to Satan (privately funded, of course):

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/oklahoma-satanists-seek-to-put-monument-on-capitol-steps-next-to-ten-commandments

On Milton's 405th birthday, it's difficult to think if a better way to mark the occasion.

Best wishes,

Jeffrey




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Jeffrey Shoulson, Ph.D.
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http://languages.uconn.edu/faculty/details.php?id=281
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Fictions of Conversion, now available
http://www.upenn.edu/pennpress/book/15101.html












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--
Dr. James Rovira
Associate Professor of English
Tiffin University
http://www.jamesrovira.com
Blake and Kierkegaard: Creation and Anxiety
Continuum 2010
http://jamesrovira.com/blake-and-kierkegaard-creation-and-anxiety/
Text, Identity, Subjectivity
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