The Satanic Temple (TST) has recently announced that it will raffle off a free abortion as part of its Religious Reproductive Rights campaign, which is designed to force the government to recognize abortion as a “religious ritual” of TST and make members exempt from any and all abortion regulations.
TST is the “primary religious Satanic organization in the world,” but, ironically, it actually doesn’t believe or worship Satan. Instead, the organization espouses following what it considers Satan’s principles, including embracing atheistic beliefs, science over faith and a certain level of anarchy. The organization has spent a lot of money on various lawsuits in order to get the government to recognize it as any other religion, to the detriment of Christianity. It even has tax-exempt status.
One of their other core beliefs is abortion, and the organization recently started a campaign to endorse the practice and explain how any pro-life, anti-abortion regulation infringes on the group’s religious beliefs.
On its website, the TST says, “The Satanic abortion ritual provides spiritual comfort and affirms bodily autonomy, self-worth, and freedom from coercive forces with the affirmation of TST’s Seven Tenets. The ritual is not intended to convince a person to have an abortion. Instead, it sanctifies the abortion process by instilling confidence and protecting bodily rights when undergoing the safe and scientific procedure.”
There are seven abortion requirements that “cannot be enforced on Satanists,” including, “mandatory waiting periods, required reading materials, the requirement that practitioners withhold certain medical information, medically unnecessary sonograms, mandatory listening to the fetal heartbeat, compulsory counseling prior to abortion and compulsory burial or cremation of fetal remains.”
Members can even produce a letter for abortionists detailing their religious objections.
But, of course, this all hinges on making abortion an actual “religious ritual,” and not a medical procedure.
To help make the case, TST has actually put together what it calls “the Satanic abortion ritual.” For example, a woman undergoing a surgical abortion should, “look at your reflection to be reminded of your personhood and your responsibility to yourself…say the third tenet (‘One’s body is inviolable, subject to one’s own will alone’) and fifth tenet (‘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’) aloud. Feel doubts dissipating and your confidence growing as you have just undertaken a decision that affirms your autonomy and free will.”
The explanation for medical abortion is similar.
As part of the campaign, the organization is raising money through a raffle. Any donation of more than $200 is entered to win a free abortion up to $2,500, which would cover an abortion late in the second trimester or even into the third.
This campaign will likely end in failure.
Abortion cannot be retroactively adopted as a religious ritual to avoid certain state mandates.
Jane Essex, the spokeswoman for TST, argued that “it would be unconstitutional to require a waiting period before receiving Holy Communion.” The comparison doesn’t make sense as Communion began solely as a religious practice.
In order to push its anti-religious and heretical agenda, TST wants to define abortion as a “ritual” to just avoid lifesaving and life-affirming abortion regulations. The whole idea is a mockery of religious rituals and practices, which is probably the point.
*The author has made the decision not to link to the website or letter due to the controversial nature of TST.
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