Aside from worshipping the Dark Lord and finally having an excuse to sport a goatee, the most exciting part of being a Satanist is finally getting invited to Satanism religious meetings, which are basically just excuses to hang out and trade ideas with groovy people like yourself. Prior to the advent of the Internet, Satanists mostly practiced in secret and had to meet at local “grottos.” What are Satanist grottos, you ask? While they sound like the hot tub at the Playboy Mansion (the one that has to be cleaned religiously), it's actually a generic term for a meeting place that could be anywhere, from a basement to a full-on Satanic church. Wherever Satanists congregated, there a grotto would be.
So what are the Satanist grotto rules? Even if Satanism is an anti-religion based on doing whatever you want, it still has to have rules, right? Absolutely. After all, you can’t have a good time if you don’t have clearly defined rules. Satanist grotto traditions are covered in multiple books written by folks who were seen as figureheads of the Church of Satan throughout its early permutations. These righteous 666 scribes were kind enough to lay out ground rules for whenever a murder of Satanists (or any other number of occultists) decide to get together.
These rules cover everything from how you’re supposed to act to what you’re allowed to do once you’ve had a few cocktails. These guys seriously thought of everything. Open your mind and learn how to act when you finally get invited to your first Satanist barbecue, or what types of riffs you should shred at your first Black Mass (just kidding, everyone knows the answer to that).
Don't Go If You're Not Invited
Even if you're not a burgeoning Satanist, you can apply this rule to whatever super cool party you're dying to attend: If no one invites you, you probably shouldn't go.
IRL Satanists don't sacrifice babies on altars, but it's still a private group, and they probably don't want you just randomly showing up and eating all the dip. If you want to be invited, play it cool and hope for the best. Or befriend some Satanists. That's probably the best thing you can do. If you're ever at a bar and you see someone with a massive pentagram pendant, 666 tattoo, and Baphomet horns, buy that person a drink.
Or you could become a card-carrying member of The Satanic Temple.
Grottos Are Not Your Personal Cult
If you're in charge of a grotto or a small crew of Satanists, it's important to remember you're not running the Cult of Greg (or whatever your name is). You're supposed to be getting your spooky friends together to discuss fun devil stuff, not selling drugs or getting into some weird commune life where you write a new bible and start wearing jumpsuits.
According to Michael Aquino's memoirs, The Temple of Set Volume 1, he and Anton Lavey discovered a grotto using get-togethers as a front for selling drugs, so they shut the whole thing down, daddy Satan style.
Keep Your Opinions To Yourself
This is common sense. If you're at a Satanist get-together and you overhear a group of friends discussing something that's none of your business, please don't pipe in like a lout. Unless someone asks for your opinion, keep your thoughts to yourself. If you're the kind of person who just can't keep his mouth shut, you probably shouldn't be hanging out at a clandestine party with a bunch of groovy people talking about (or maybe even to?) Satan.
This is especially true if you were at one point Christian and are looking to change. You may think, because you know the Bible back to front, you can leap into someone else's convo and correct them. Christsplaining is a big no-no in 666Daddyland. Satanists have their own interpretation of things; trying to correct them with proper Church knowledge is totally against the notion of rejecting the tyranny of God.
You Have To Know LaVey's Teachings In And Out If You Want To Lead The Meeting
If you're going to host a Satanist get-together or run a grotto, you need to have a deep understanding of Anton LaVey's work and the nine tenets of Satanism. To open your own grotto is to say you comprehend Satanism fully, and can represent it to the outside world. If you just bought a Slayer shirt and got into Rosemary's Baby, you shouldn't be hosting a get-together for a true group of Satanists, but that doesn't mean you can't get together with your friends and talk about how to represent the unholy one in your every day life.
If you're more a Satanic Temple than Church of Satan type, you don't need to know much about LaVey, but you should be well-versed in the philosophical precepts of the Temple's manifesto before spearheading a gathering. Get yourself a membership card, familiarize yourself with The Satanic Temple’s Guidelines for Effective Protest, know the Tenets of the Temple, and purchase some high quality snacks and Behemoth records (so your party will be off the chain).