Some people claim that saying the Lord’s Prayer backwards will allow you to “unshackle yourself from Christianity” or to evoke Satan.
Is that true? Relevant? Purposeful? Or just an OG way to be an edgelord?
But before delving into the occult significance of this, let’s think about this for a minute…
The Lord’s Prayer As Biblical Text
First, there are two versions of The Lord’s Prayer in the bible.
Luke 11:2-4 (KJV) is a short version:
2 And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth. 3 Give us day by day our daily bread. 4 And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.
And Matthew 6:9-13 (KJV) says basically the same thing, but longer:
9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. 10 Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. 11 Give us this day our daily bread. 12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.
Analysis Of These Verses
So, which is more precise? The latter is the more accepted version, and the one in the Book of Common Prayers (Anglican book from 1662). [Though there are some additions to this prayer in that book (and in the KJV) not found in the most ancient books of the Bible because the translators of the KJV wrongly thought the Byzantine Greek text was more ancient than the other texts and they added the “For thine…” part. Research Doxology for more info. The 1928 revision for Episcopal churches and more modern translations often do not include it ending at “… deliver us from evil”.]
Second, why is this prayer missing from the Gospel of Mark if Jesus said it to all of his students? The scholarly understanding is that both of the above were written by the Q Source. (Extreme simplification: Mark and Q put together give us Matthew and Luke…) Meaning that Mark, historically speaking the oldest gospel,
Third, the English bible is composed of imperfect translations from Greek and Latin to English. There are of course other translations of the bible that seek to be closer to the source text, but wouldn’t it make more sense to speak the Greek or Latin version backwards to be more exact? Or moreover, to say the prayer backwards in Aramaic (the language Jesus would have most likely spoken–though, it’s not exactly clear he even existed…)?
A Christian Way To Speak The Lord’s Prayer Backwards
Doing a little research, I came across an interesting discussion of the reasons a Christian, particularly a Catholic, might speak the Lord’s Prayer backwards.
While this may not be of much interest for the run of the mill occultist, there is something to the idea of reading a text backwards line-by-line. In a certain way, it can alter the meaning of the text, but in other ways it can show deeper meaning to a text. The following is a Christian showing one way to do this.
Occult Significance Of Speaking The Lord’s Prayer Backwards
Now that we’ve gotten that foray into academic level boredom out of the way, we can explore the occult significance.
First, what is meant by saying the Lord’s Prayer backwards?
When most people in the LHP, Black Lodge, or Satanic Community (or whatever you want to call people that practice LHP or black magick) refer to this practice, they mean speaking it backwards letter-by-letter.
This would look like this ([brackets] around the doxological part):
Nema. [Reve rof, yrolg eht dna, rewop eht dna, modgnik eht si eniht rof]: Live morf su reviled tub, noitatpmet otni ton su dael dna.srotbed ruo evigrof ew sa ,stbed ruo su evigrof dna. Daerb yliad ruo yad siht su evig. Nevaeh ni si ti sa, htrae ni enod eb lliw yhT, emoc modgnik yht. Eman yht eb dewollah, nevaeh ni tra hcihw rehtaf ruo: ey yarp erofereht rennam siht retfa.
There are phonological backwards spellings of this, but I do not wish to violate someone’s intellectual property rights…
And Where Does This Lord’s Prayer Backwards Idea Originate Anyway?
This brings us to point two: where does this idea of saying the Lord’s Prayer backwards come from?
It’s actually from a book called Mastering Witchcraft by Paul Huson (1970). [And if you’re curious to learn more about this topic, I recommend looking in this book.]
The author, Huson, writes in this book that lighting a candle reciting the Lord’s Prayer backwards on three consecutive nights while completely alone will allow you to de-shackle yourself from God. An unbinding of sorts. Of course, you must end it with “So mote it be!” (as a good 70s era occultist or Wiccan should end everything occult in nature).
He claims that this is a tradition from the Salem Witch Trials and other times in history where witches were persecuted. [Though, I’ve yet to find corroborating evidence. IMNSHO, I think he created this or heard of it from someone who created it.]
Later Adaptations Of The Backwards Lord’s Prayer In “Satanic Temples” + A Nod To Crowley
Later on, some “Satanic temples” took this practice on and added to it the practice of calling on Satan in order to blaspheme God or Jesus and to venerate Satan. Some refer to this as the “Law of Inversion”. Though this is more likely a practice they picked up from Crowley’s suggestion to meditate on writing, thinking, walking, reading, and speaking backwards (likely Liber 913) rather than a purely Satanic practice. Some even suggest walking backwards from the ritual space after ending…
Crowley has to be one of the least cited authors in history!
Questions We’re Left With
But the questions this should get all of us asking are
- Does saying the Lord’s Prayer backwards actually blaspheme God or Jesus, or is it more like Crowley suggests, speaking (and doing things) backwards is a good way to train one’s mind to be more receptive to occult insights and odd ways of thinking?
- Does a LHP occultist really need to blaspheme God or Jesus? (Especially if you take the position that demonic entities are older than the Judeo-Christian religion.)
In my mind at least, the answers to these questions are both no. (Well, no + Crowley’s suggestion of deepening one’s mind…)
But now that you have the information more clearly discussed (than anywhere at least that I could find!), I hope you have the space to make your own decision whether this is an OG way to be an edgelord or something that makes sense in your own personal practice.
Clearly, I think this is some uninformed edgelord behavior, but each to their own, I suppose.