A. Desire

THE first ingredient in the performance of a ritual is desire, otherwise known as motivation, temptation, or emotional persuasion. If you do not truly desire any end result, you should not attempt to perform a working.

There is no such thing as a "practice" working, and the only way that a magician could do "tricks" such as moving inanimate objects, would be to have a strong emotional need to do so. It is true that if the magician wishes to gain power through impressing others with his feats of magic, he must produce tangible proof of his ability. The Satanic concept of magic, however, fails to find gratification in the proving of magical prowess.

The Satanist performs his ritual to insure the outcome of his desires, and he would not waste his time nor force of will on something so inconclusive as folling a pencil off a table, etc. through the application of magic. The amount of energy needed to levitate a teacup (genuinely) would be of sufficient force to place an idea in a group of people's heads half-way across the earth, in turn, motivating them in accordance with your will. The Satanist knows that even if you succeeded in lifting the teacup from the table, it would be assumed that trickery was used anyway. Therefore, if the Satanist wants to float objects in mid-air, he uses wires, mirrors, or other devices, and saves his force for self-aggrandizement. All "gifted" mediums and white-light mystics practice pure and applied stage magic, with their blindfolds and sealed envelopes, and any fairly competent stage magician, carnival worker, or lodge-hall entertainer can duplicate the same effect - although lacking, perhaps, the sanctimonious "spiritual" overtones.

A little child learns that if he wishes for something hard enough, it will come true. This is meaningful. Wishing indicates desire, whereas prayer is accompanied by apprehension. Scripture has twisted desire into lust, covetousness, and greed. Be as a child, and do not stifle desire, lest you lose touch with the first ingredient in the performance of magic. Be led into temptation, and take that which tempts, whenever you can!

Copyright ©1969 by Anton Szandor LaVey - All rights reserved, which includes the right to reproduce this material or portions thereof in any form whatsoever except as provided by the U.S. Copyright Law. For information address Avon Books, Inc.