What life is like as a Satanist in Exeter as cult grows in Devon

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Satanism is on the rise in Devon and with 20 Exeter residents identifying as Satanists we’ve found out more about the cult movement and why more people might be turning to alternative beliefs.

Figures from the 2021 Census suggested that the number of Devon residents who identify as Satanists has more than doubled in the last ten years, with 55 followers in 2011 and 118 in 2021. Exeter alone has 20 people who selected this option in the voluntary religious beliefs section of the survey.

Among them is Bryoni Willson who has called herself a Satanist for the last 10 years. While religious beliefs and practices can be uniquely individual, Bryoni gave DevonLive an insight into what Satanism means for her and how she practices it in her day to day life.

Having been raised as a Christian and Jehovah’s Witness, she explains that when she became an adult, it was “curiosity” that led her to consider alternative belief systems.

Bryoni said: “Curiosity got me reading about it. I had a half Christian, half Jehovah’s Witness upbringing so it was a bit of a ‘mishmash’ and as an adult you start looking at other religions because the internet is readily available, you don’t have to go to libraries anymore to get books, you can just Google away.”

The structure of Satanism holds many similarities to other religions, including the existence of multiple denominations and, like with Christianity, Satanists believe in the existence of a God and a Devil.

Bryoni says she would describe Satanism as a belief system rather than a religion. For her, the central belief is that people should take responsibility for their own actions as opposed to attributing them to the example set by a god or deity.

Content retrieved from: https://www.devonlive.com/news/devon-news/what-life-like-satanist-exeter-7933936.

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