Thursday, February 27, 2014

According To The SAPS I Engage In Harmful Occult Practices

...And probably, you too.

I wear a pentagram. I wear it proudly on my necklace for all to see. I do so as a practising Witch. According to this article by the SAPS on their website, wearing a pentagram is a "warning sign of engaging in harmful occult practices". This and similar hare-brained lunatic ideas can be seen in the list of wildly inaccurate claims from their website where these *snerk* "occult experts" list "warning signs" about Satanist religion.

Seriously. If you're depressed, you're a 'satanist', if you're a teen going through the rebellious stage (yes, that is a stage all teenagers go through), you're a 'satanist'. If you are bored, you're a 'satanist'. If you're a child and don't go to church or Sunday school, you're a 'satanist' or 'dabbling with the occult'. This is simply unbelievable nonsense one would expect to find in something so outdated and archaic as the Malleus Malificarum as used by the Inquisition - or, a witch hunt.

And so, because I wear a pentagram around my neck and because I identify as a Witch, the SAPS calls me a "satanist" or "a dabbler in the occult". Apparently this means I "engage in harmful occult practices" - whatever that means. Funny enough, they seem to exclude crimes relating to Christian religion from this (I guess they haven't figured out that "harmful occult practices" includes "pray away the gay therapy", hate speech and intimidation, exorcisms resulting death or injury etc - funny how they wouldn't appreciate the irony in that.) 

Plenty of people know me, many of them are Christians. Some of them actually like me, and I actually like them. Our friendships do not include trading insults about our respective beliefs or trying to influence each other to change. Instead, they are built on a mutual appreciation for each other, for the value of life, freedom, love and all the things that make life here worth living. Other people I know as Witches, Pagans, Atheists, Agnostics, Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims, Christians, and Satanists (both Theistic and Atheistic) seem to share the same values. So why is there this insane frenzy to believe the worst of other people without even taking the trouble to get to know them, what they're about, what they believe - before some people hop onto their little soap boxes to wave their crooked little fingers at others? Who died and made them gods? They don't define me or my beliefs or my right to live here - in what alternative universe do they live in that they think they can?

I guess it's lucky I'm not depressed, bored, avoiding family members and secretive about my activities as well, or I would be well and truly fucked. They may have me on the "not attending church" though. I did take mom to church a few times in the last few years, on account of her age and physical frailty - and I didn't even burst into flames in there. Imagine that.

Read through their list to see if you are also "dabbling with the occult" - or if the SAPS is just plain bonkers:
"The Mental Profile of the Dabbler (a person who experiment in different circles of local satanic groups.)   The signs to look out for in children are:

Boredom and
Low self-worthiness.

Warning Signs of the Dabbler:

The dabbler is likely to have difficulty relating to peers and in most cases, they have withdrawn from their family and religious heritage. They tend to become involved in a variety of the following:

A drop in grades;
Drug use;
Physical and sexual abuse;
Mind control;
Animal mutilation;
Increased hatred;

Drug abuse is the common denominator in all levels of Satanism. Drugs have become the primary source of mind-altering experiences for the Satanist, thereby, giving him a false sense of power and spiritual potency.

Characteristics that may indicate satanic involvement:

Avoiding family members;
A change in friends;
Becoming secretive about activities;
Loss of interest in extra-curricular activities;
Personality changes;
An unusual interest in books, movies, videos, etc. with an occult theme;
Use of drugs and alcohol and
Lack of attendance of worship with family

Individuals are recruited into satanic groups by any number or combination of the following:

Free drugs or sex;
Pornography and
Personal choice

Body Markings:

Commonly used markings include the following (it is important to note that body markings can be used for the preparation of a sacrifice, as well as initiation into a group):

Goat head;
Inverted cross;
MENA (amen);
Black rose and

These are NOT facts, this is PROPAGANDA. Most of the signs listed are ordinary teenage behavior, and the rest are indicative of psychological stress or other conditions or reactions to circumstances, all circumstantial and conveniently pressed together to form a list which proves absolutely nothing.

The ORC continues to list misinformation and present it at “workshops” and in digital and print media as though they have a clue of what they are talking about. The truth is that they are part of the problem by creating and spreading the myth that “Satanism is a belief system which leads to crime” and using the results of their own handiwork to justify their actions and continued existence.

Satanists, Pagans and Witches DO NOT sacrifice anything, but cherish and value life in all its forms.The kind of "satanism" they describe is a mythical figment of the imaginations of fearful religious extremists, created and disseminated by themselves as if it were true, resulting in the phenomenon known as "legend tripping".

Legend tripping behavior by people who believe their version of “created satanism” and acting this out is being presented as “evidence” that “satanism is on the increase”. It is hysteria based upon misinformation – and what makes it worse is the fact that this is being done DELIBERATELY by a select corps of Christian evangelicalists within the SA Police Service.

The ORC are not "occult experts", they are Christian evangelists given power within a special unit formed to persecute other religions through the spreading of harmful misinformation designed to spread fear and intolerance while bolstering and advancing the interests of their own religion. 

The ORC have proved that they are on a mission to spread false information about religious minorities they target as "harmful occult practice" through their religious dogma, including Pagans, Witches and Satanists. 

Their consistent refusal to engage with a Pagan community body, who has made repeated fruitless attempts to engage with them on the gross inaccuracy of their material since their public re-emergence in 2012, has demonstrated that they consider themselves above the constitution and the laws of this country, which guarantee freedom of religion and protections from persecution and discrimination.

Yesterday, as if to demonstrate their insincere intentions, the SAPS held a press conference and made a false claim on public record (posted on the same SAPS page) to have 'engaged with the SA Pagan Rights Alliance on issues relating to "occult related crime" - when they have NEVER done so, and certainly not in any official or formal capacity. This is an outright lie, the motive for which can only be subterfuge and deceit.

In 2013, I was part of a delegation from SAPRA to meet with the Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities (CRLC), under the South African ministry of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, in Port Elizabeth. 

I represented SAPRA and the Alternative Religions Forum at the meeting, where I presented and submitted a copy of a 400 page paper on Satanism, Neo-paganism as religions, and clarifications about occult misunderstandings titled “Satanism: The Acid Test” to the CRLC and other delegates and interested parties from a few other religions (mainly Christianity - no surprises there) – but I stress that at no point was I engaged by any representative of the SAPS at that meeting. Also, as a member of the SAPRA Executive Committee, I am not aware of any such "engagement" with any "team" from the SAPS up to this time, and I have to say I'm not alone in my bewilderment.

The continued attack on Occultism and Occult religions - and anyone who does not identify with right wing extremist ChristianISM in South Africa - as led by a governmental body, is uncalled for, unfair, unconstitutional – and it is has been continuing unchecked for far too long.

Further reading: 

Satanism, The Acid Test v01.03

After 4 months of work, the final version of the Alternative Religions Project document – “Satanism: The Acid Test” is available, providing explanations of Satanic Ritual Abuse (SRA) hysteria, Satanism as diverse religions under a common label, other religions and subcultures mis-associated with Satanism and the Satanism stereotype, and finally, flaws in the stereotype itself…

If you would like to know more about Christina Engela and her writing, please feel free to browse her website.

If you’d like to send Christina Engela a question about her life as a writer or transactivist, please send an email to or use the Contact form.

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All material copyright © Christina Engela, 2019. 


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