The Meaning of Satan’s Name

“The Fall of the Rebel Angels”, Sebastiano Ricci


Jesus says:

“The primitive name was Lucifer: in the mind of God it meant ‘ensign or bearer of the light’-that is, of God, for God is Light. Second in beauty amid all that is, he was a pure mirror reflecting unendurable Beauty. In missions to men he would have been the executor of God’s will, the messenger of the decrees of goodness which the Creator would have transmitted to his blessed, sinless children, to lead them higher and higher in his likeness. The bearer of light, with the rays of this diving light which he bore, would have spoken to men, and they, devoid of sins, would have understood these flashings of harmonious words, all of them love and rejoicing.

“On seeing himself in God, seeing himself in himself, and seeing himself in his companions-for God enveloped him in his light and delighted in the splendor of his archangel-and because the angels venerated him as the most perfect mirror of God, he admired himself. He should have admired God alone. But in the being of all that is created all good and wicked forces are present and churn together until one of the two parts overcomes to yield good or evil, as all gaseous elements are present in the atmosphere because they are necessary. Lucifer attracted pride to himself. He cultivated and extended it. He made it into a weapon and a seduction. He wanted more than he had. He wanted everything-he was already so much. He seduced the less attentive among his companions. He distracted them from contemplating God a supreme Beauty. Knowing the future wonders of God, he wanted to be in God’s place. He saw himself, with his disturbed thought, as a the head of the future men, worshipped as the supreme power. He thought, ‘I know God’s secret. I know the words. The design is known to me. I can do all that He wills. As I presided at the first creative operations, I can proceed. I am.’ The words that only God can say were the cry of the ruin of the proud one. And he was Satan.

“He was ‘Satan.’ In all truth I tell you that the name of Satan was not given by man, though, by the order and will of God, he gave a name to all that he knew to exist and still baptizes his discoveries with names created by himself. In all truth I tell you that the name of Satan comes directly from God, and it is one of the first revelations God made to the spirit of his poor son wandering over the earth. And as my Most Holy Name has a meaning which I once mentioned to you, now listen to the meaning of this horrendous name. Write as I tell you to:

S                           A                        T                        A                     N

Sacrilege      Atheism       Turpitude         Anticharity       Negation Proud                                           Adverse        Tempter            Avid                         [E]nemy                                                                         and Traitor

“This is Satan. And this is what those sick with Satanism are. And he is also seduction, craftiness, darkness, agility, and iniquity. The five accursed letters forming his name, written with fire on his brow stricken by a lightning bolt. The five accursed characteristics of the Corrupter against which my five blessed Wounds flame out, saving with their pain whoever wants to be saved from what Satan continually injects.

“The names ‘demon,’ ‘devil’ and ‘Beelzebub’ can pertain to all the spirits of darkness. But this alone is ‘his’ name. And in Heaven he is named by that name alone, for there the language of God is spoken, in loving fidelity, to indicate what is intended as well, as God conceived it.

“He is the ‘Contrary One’. The one contrary to God. The one that is the opposite of God. And every action by him is the antithesis of God’s actions. And every rumination by him involves leading men to be contrary to God. This is what Satan is. He is ‘a setting himself against Me’ in action. He sets the threefold concupiscence against my three theological virtues; the serpentine breeding ground of his horrible vices against the four cardinal virtues and all the others issuing forth from Me.

“But, as charity is said to be the greatest of all the virtues, so I say that the greatest of its antivirtues and the one most repulsive to Me is pride. Because all evil has come through it. I therefore say that, whereas I still make allowances for the weakness of the flesh which yields to the incitement of lust, I say that I cannot make allowances for the pride which seeks to compete with God, as a new Satan. Do I strike you as unjust? I am not. Consider that at root lust is a vice of the lower part which in some has an extremely voracious appetite, satisfied in moments of overwhelming brutishness. But pride is a vice of the higher part, consummated with sharp, lucid intelligence, premeditated and enduring. It damages the part which most resembles God. It tramples on the gem given by God. It communicates a likeness to Satan. It sows pain more than the flesh does. For the flesh can make a wife, a woman, suffer. But pride can cause victims in whole continents, in every class of people. Because of pride man has been ruined and the world will perish. Because of pride faith languishes. Pride: The most direct emanation of Satan.

“I have forgiven the great sinners of the senses because they were devoid of spiritual pride. But I could not redeem Doras, Jocanah, Sadoc, Eli, and others like them because they were ‘proud.'”

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