I'm more of a believer in Gaytanism. That being said...
Whenever I hear about "satanism" I'm reminded of my favorite satanic cult story, with the best punch line ever, except it's not a joke or urban legend but actually happened! This excerpt from a 1993 New York Times article on Long Island - in essence an isolated, inbred peninsula - explains in a nutshell why so many killers, adulterers and kidnappers making daily headlines are from here. Well worth the read:
"It would be foolish to believe that a single story could sum up the entire range of bizarre and sensational behavior that is Long Island Babylon. Particularly a story that doesn't even mention Amy or Sol, Joey or "Joel the Ripper," little Katie Beers or Howard Stern, much less the "Homeroom Hit Man," the "Angel of Death" nurse, the Islip Garbage Barge or Geraldo Rivera.
Nonetheless, I feel that the story of the unprintable Satanist Ritual Killing Ground Photo comes close.
Some years ago in Northport -- not far from the birthplace of Pynchon, who is, far more than the frequently invoked F. Scott Fitzgerald, the true literary avatar of the Long Island soul -- two allegedly angel-dusting, devil-worshiping teen-agers were branded as "ritual cult murderers" of another teen-ager in the Aztakea woods.
It was one of the first such episodes in what would become an overhyped national trendlet, and perhaps the first signal that something sinister was stirring out there behind the split-level shutters of Long Island's suburbs. But this particular story about the unprintable photo, one I heard from a former Newsday editor who swears it's true, isn't about the killing itself; rather about something that happened the night after the death became public.
It seems the paper had dispatched a photographer to get a nighttime shot of the supposedly spooky, satanist ritual killing ground out there in the woods, something that would capture the diabolical horror of it all. But when certain pictures came out of the darkroom, they just weren't . . . suitable. Unusable. Not because they were too terrifying (at least not terrifying in a Luciferian way). But because many photographs of the alleged cult coven's killing circle prominently featured a large boulder, across the face of which was scrawled the following somewhat-less-than-terrifying cult slogan:
A check with the Newsday photo library disclosed that contact sheets of all unpublished photos had been discarded. Nonetheless, 10 years later, it can be said with confidence: Satin still lives on Long Island. No, Satin flourishes. Satin rules. Satin lives in Joey Buttafuoco's auto body shop, Satin lives in Sol Wachtler's Manhasset town house, Satin lives in the recurrent proof that even when we try our hardest to be sensationally bad, we often wind up just a little bit off -- as much embarrassing as menacing."