Fabian Dee's profile picture

Published by


Category: Religion and Philosophy

Lucifer: religious symbolism

Reproduced from my web site, written around 10 years ago or so.

Lucifer is the word meaning 'light bearer' (from lux, lucis, "light", and ferre, "to bear, bring"), a Roman astrological term for the "Morning Star" the planet Venus. The word Lucifer was the translation of the Septuagint Greek heosphoros, ("dawn-bearer"; cf. Greek phosphoros, "light-bearer"; itself the translation of the Hebrew Helel ben Shahar, Son of Dawn), used by Jerome in the Vulgate, having mythologically the same meaning as Prometheus who brought fire to humanity.

Below is a 2nd-century sculpture of the moon goddess Selene accompanied by Hesperus and Phosphorus: the corresponding Latin names are Luna, Vesper and Lucifer.

One form of phosphorus (white phosphorus) emits a faint glow upon exposure to oxygen (hence its Greek derivation and the Latin 'light-bearer', meaning the planet Venus as Hesperus or "Morning Star").

Two illustrations of Lucifer (as Satan) by Gustave Doré's for the 17th Century work Paradise Lost by John Milton, are shown below. These drawings may well have contributed in part to today's notion of Lucifer being Satan and a fallen angel.


A statue of one of twelve Lucifers on the (Catholic) Holy Trinity Column in Olomouc in Olomouc (Czech Republic), built in the 18th Century, is shown below.

Source: Michal Manas.

A statue of Lucifer, by Guillaume Geefs (Cathedral of St. Paul, Liège, Belgium), from the 19th Century, is shown below. It may well have been inspired by Gustave Doré's illustrations.

Source: Luc Viator

Clearly the depiction and concept of Lucifer has changed dramatically over the millennia, from the Roman era to the pseudo-Christian vision of the last three centuries.

The Sigil of Lucifer, used by Theistic Satanists and some Luciferians and Gnostic Luciferians, is shown below.

Source: Ssolbergj

Lucifer is known as the 'God of Morning Light', the bringer of illumination, wisdom and knowledge, etc. and has its origins with the Roman God and planet Venus. The metaphor of the Morning Star is often overused by self-proclaimed Luciferian circles often to the point of losing sight of the historical origins and astronomical reality, in that the planet Venus do not emit much light or illumination at all, but merely reflects it, and is useful for navigation only, and not illumination in the sense of the light received from the sun or the reflected light from the moon where you can actually see where you are going.

There are many types of Luciferianism so it is easy to confuse them. This section aims to explain the difference between the Luciferian Sects. Historically speaking, there is no direct connection between the Roman God Venus and Luciferianism as it exists today. Most Luciferian Sects do not recognise Jesus Christ with the exception of Gnostic Luciferianism and those historical followers of Saint Lucifer (Lucifer Calaritanu). Strictly speaking, Gnostic Luciferianism recognises the Gnostic Jesus as opposed to the New Testament Christian view of Jesus. Also Gnostic Luciferianism differs from all other forms of Luciferianism in that it regards the creator of the world and indeed Universe as Demiurge, whereas other types of Luciferianism usually associate this with the main deity they worship (e.g. the Grand Architect of the Universe and purveyor of wisdom). Gnostic Luciferians may also surprise some Christians as much of what they say appears almost identical to that of Gnostic Christianity or progressive Christianity. Clearly it depends on context and at other times Gnostic Luciferians may also sound like Satanists.

Diane Vera describes Lucifer on her web site here.

Luciferianism is often identified as an auxiliary of Satanism, due to the popular identification of Lucifer with Satan. Some Luciferians accept this identification or consider Lucifer as the light bearer aspect of Satan, or even as equivalent to Satan, and thus could properly be called Theistic Satanists. Others reject it, arguing that Lucifer is a more positive ideal than Satan. They are inspired by the ancient myths of Egypt, Rome and Greece, Gnosticism and/or traditional Western occultism.

It is possible that the Nag Hammadi library's 'On the Origin of the World' describes 'Lucifer'. Whilst there is no explicit mention of Lucifer, it does describe the 'Man of Light', a type of immortal banished from his realm, who brings light. is a reference to 'Lucifer', although no explicit mention of Lucifer is made in the scroll, and it is not a Christian text, but it is possible it could have influenced Christian thinkers in later centuries.

And when he had come to know in truth that an immortal man of light had been existing before him, he was greatly disturbed; for he had previously said to all the gods and their angels, "It is I who am god. No other one exists apart from me." For he had been afraid they might know that another had been in existence before him, and might condemn him. But he, being devoid of understanding, scoffed at the condemnation and acted recklessly. He said, "If anything has existed before me, let it appear, so that we may see its light." And immediately, behold! Light came out of the eighth heaven above and passed through all of the heavens of the earth. When the prime parent saw that the light was beautiful as it radiated, he was amazed. And he was greatly ashamed. As that light appeared, a human likeness appeared within it, very wonderful. And no one saw it except for the prime parent and Pronoia, who was with him. Yet its light appeared to all the forces of the heavens. Because of this they were all troubled by it.... Now when Adam of Light conceived the wish to enter his light - i.e., the eighth heaven - he was unable to do so because of the poverty that had mingled with his light. Then he created for himself a vast eternal realm. And within that eternal realm he created six eternal realms and their adornments, six in number, that were seven times better than the heavens of chaos and their adornments. Now all these eternal realms and their adornments exist within the infinity that is between the eighth heaven and the chaos below it, being counted with the universe that belongs to poverty.

Traditional Luciferianism was a (heretical) pantheistic thirteenth-century German sect which held that Lucifer should be worshiped as the ruler of the material world. This concept of the material world as Lucifer's domain was, most likely, taken from Catholic Christian doctrine and his titles in the (presumably Latin Vulgate) Bible as 'the god of this world' in 2 Corinthians 4:4 and 'lord of this world' in John 12:31.

John 12:31 (KJV): Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out.

2 Corinthians 4:4 (KJV): In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

Presumably this Sect regarded Jesus as a false messiah, although this is speculation and I do not have any further information on this.

Lucifer is the God described by the famous Grand Commander of the Scottish Rite, Southern Jurisdiction, Albert Pike, in the Scottish Rite book Morals and Dogma.

In the Instructions to the 23 Supreme Councils of the World, July 14, 1889, Albert Pike was recorded by A.C. De La Rive in La Femme et l'Enfant dans la FrancMaconnerie Universelle on page 588 as having said that Freemasonry in its purest form should embody the Luceferian Doctrine and that Lucifer was the real God, not Adonay. Adonay is the Hebrew word for Lord, used to describe either the Hebrew God 'Yaweh' or Jesus Christ.

In a letter dated 15 August 1871, addressed to Grand Master Guiseppie Mazzini 33° (Archives British Museum, London, England), Albert Pike wrote that atheism and nihilism shall destroy theism (Christianity) and civilisation, unleashing bloody terror.

Pike regarded Jesus at most to be a man, and accused him of being an atheist, a blasphemer, the god Hercules, the founder of a religion of hate etc. An extract from Albert Pike's Morals and Dogma book can be found here, containing references to the Greek God Prometheus.

Some classically-educated Freemasons and those inspired by their work claim to use 'Luciferian' in the scholarly sense of 'bringing enlightenment', invoking the Greek deity Prometheus. Whether these individuals were Gnostic Luciferians or just Prometheus worshippers is not certain. The implication from Albert Pike's writings in general is that he was some manner of polytheist, interested in Egyptian mysticism, with a particular anti-Christian reactionary stance. Whilst literal interpretation of his words might assume he was referring to Lucifer as a literal deity, like Adonay, those who are familiar with Pike's works would interpret this metaphorically, meaning Lucifer as a reflection of the light of the self and the light of Wisdom. Whether he was viewing the 'Grand Architect' as being the 'God' he hated or not is unclear. He used Baphomet as a symbol of resistance against Chrsitianity so perhaps Lucifer was used in the same way. Pro-Catholic polemicists linked such masonic usage with Sects whom they believe were worshipping Lucifer, which they believed have had persistent groups of followers since the Middle Ages.

Modern Luciferianism is a similar theology to Traditional Luciferianism, usually modelled on a panentheistic view of Lucifer as being all encompassing essence of the Universe (an essence or God that pervades the Universe, but which makes up each person, each person having the potential to become 'God' or 'a God'). The lines between Modern Luciferianism and Gnostic Luciferianism are often somewhat blurred.

An overview of the roots of Luciferianism and symbolism are examined in the article 'Luciferianism: The Religion of Apotheosis' by Phillip D. Collins (2006). Luciferianism is the product of 'religious engineering', which sociologist William Sims Bainbridge defines as "the conscious, systematic, skilled creation of a new religion" in his book New Religions, Science, and Secularization".

Helena Blavatsky, the founder of the Theosophical Society, established an occult magazine entitled 'Lucifer' in London in 1887.

6 Kudos


Displaying 0 of 0 comments ( View all | Add Comment )