Naming your new Satanic identity is a creative process fraught with apprehension and self doubt. The work involved often leaves an individual seeking professional therapy to reaffirm that they’ve made the best decision. “What if people think my name is cheesy?” “I want to be something original and recognizable from a movie like The Omen or The Crow but it seems that there are already dozens of other folks with those names…” “I’m totally down with Satanism in the last month or two and I need a name that reflects my sincere dedication.” I will share my personal experience and some tips because I’ve been down the Left Hand Path for a few minutes. I’ve also seen a few of the shrubs along the way that everyone has pissed on. (They smell funny but some folks hang about there anyway, so whatevs.)
Your Satanic name should say something about both who you are and what you aspire to be. It can also express your ability or limitation for humor and snark. Thumbing our nose at superstition is a favorite pastime for Satanists. Most of us aren’t picking names that are the equivalent of wearing a taupe three piece suit. Satanic name concepts are not remarkably different from more commonly recognised religious or subcultural names. Hippies and Wiccans have very natural (as in derived from nature) sounding names. Other pagan types tend to mix in some mythological names with the nature theme. Drag queens often pick names full of puns and bawdy sexual or gender relevant humor. All of these being distinct from the names transpeople take because they are secondary or additional identities. These are additional characters in our tool belt to help inspire us to the goals and changes we seek in the world around us.
First, let’s talk social media. If you’re using your new name on Facebook review their “real name” policies. Nothing sucks more than to invest months loading pictures and accepting friends just to have some asshat report your obviously weird sounding name as a pseudonym and lose all of that. Be prepared (or get prepared) to defend it. I’ve had mail sent to me under my preferred name, and I have membership cards with that name on them. Facebook will require pictures of those plus a third state picture ID (whose name does not have to match) that has a date of birth that matches the DOB on your profile. Facebook has received a lot of criticism concerning how their “real name” policy affects LGBT and religious minorities or people who just don’t want to be found. They’ve loosened the restrictions and this is the best solution they’ve deigned to offer.
People are often meanies on the internet. Especially when they are adverse to what you have to say but aren’t confident in how to challenge it. They will often feel compelled to comment anyway so your shiny new name is a low hanging fruit. Sometimes, as with the case of The Crow above, they will lash out bitterly at your aesthetic preferences when they don’t know that you are following every thread on every article or blog you publish that gets shared (because life is lonely and your ego may fill that well of despair). These violations will often trigger and traumatise you. When you are done weeping you may want to change your name again so that everyone will stop laughing at you. Take a few moments and think about all of the hard work you put into selecting your new pseudonym, the endless hours of Google and lists of demonic or occult names, and ask yourself if it is worth it to appease caged folk who are just likely as lonely and hurt as you. Listen to some Marilyn Manson. “They’ll never be anything at all.” It gets better.
It’s true, Peter Gilmore may never approve of your new name. Such things are beneath Lord Gilmore. However, those of us who are actually involved in frequent dialog with strangers online may wish to compartmentalize our associations. Even when our family and friends know about our Satanism there is no need to have your “real” social media account and friend list subjected to all of the weird interactions that a vocal and visible Satanist often incurs. Everyone can worry about their own self importance and take whatever measures suit and amuse them while avoiding possible discomfort or embarrassment.
When I chose my name I chose a first name that I always liked, Ash. Then I looked for a suitable demonic name that would preferably also provide some alliteration cause fuck you, FUN. I was thrilled that wikipedia validated that, not only was the perfect sounding name available, but the demon in question perfectly suited ME! It was infernal destiny.
So, be as frivolous or SO SERIOUS as you like. Check out some demonic or occult name lists. Look at some of the witch names in Anton LaVey’s own book The Satanic Witch. Do whatever you want, because after all you’re a Satanist, but also consider the results. What you have to say (or not) is up to you and will stand on its own. Don’t spend too much time defending your tastes unless it is amusing you to do so.
Ave Satanas, friends.