Table of contents:
- 1. "Enlightened Ones"
- 2.May 1, 1776
- 3. Adam Weishaupt
- 4. Freemasonry
- 5. Only 10 years …
- 6. Order of the Cultivators
- 7. Growth in the size of society
- 8. Ritual of initiation
- 9. "Enlightened Freemasonry"
- 10. Recruitment of Freemasons
- 11. Refusal of theologian Johann Caspar Lavater
- 12. Conflict of Illuminati and Rosicrucians
- 13. Opposition to the monarchy
- 14. Hunt for the Illuminati
- 15. French Revolution
It turns out the Illuminati were very real. No, this is not a "secret group that rules the world." There was a real historical group called the Bavarian Illuminati that was founded in Germany in the 18th century. It didn't last long, but it spawned numerous conspiracy theories. So who the real Illuminati were.
1. "Enlightened Ones"
The name "Illuminati" is translated from Latin as "enlightened". In fact, this name refers to a number of groups and societies in the past, both real and fictitious.
2. May 1, 1776
Historically, this name usually refers to the Bavarian Illuminati. Founded on May 1, 1776, they were an Enlightenment secret society. The goals of the Bavarian Illuminati were actually quite noble. They wanted to confront superstition and government abuse of power.
3. Adam Weishaupt
The Bavarian Illuminati Society was founded by Adam Weishaupt, a professor at the University of Ingolstadt. The Jesuit University rejected all overly liberal or Protestant ideas, so Weishaupt decided to found an underground society dedicated to promoting the ideals of the Enlightenment.
Few people know about this today, but Adam founded his society based on the structure of Freemasonry. A natural question may well arise: why did he not become a Freemason himself, but founded his own society. It's simple - Weishaupt thought it was too expensive to be a Freemason.
5. Only 10 years …
The society lasted only 10 years. But during this time, about 2,000 people became Bavarian Illuminati. Basically, they accepted Christians with an agreeable character. The entrance to the society was closed to Jews, pagans, monks, women and members of other secret societies. The candidates were also generally wealthy, obedient, willing to learn, and between the ages of 18 and 30.
6. Order of the Cultivators
The Primary Society was called Bund der Perfektibilisten (Cultivation Order). The name was later changed because it sounded too strange.
7. Growth in the size of society
The highest position in society (naturally, except for the founder Adam Weishaupt) was held by Baron Adolf von Knigge. It was thanks to von Knigge that the order was able to attract Masons and greatly increase the number of Illuminati.
8. Ritual of initiation
High-ranking members such as Adolf von Knigge progressed through the degrees of initiation (as in Freemasonry) very quickly. At each degree, they received more and more knowledge. Because Adolf von Knigge was “climbing the career ladder” too quickly, Weishaupt was forced to admit that he had not yet invented a ritual for the higher degrees of initiation. In the end, both men decided to work together to make the Illuminati a more attractive society for future members.
9. "Enlightened Freemasonry"
After some time, Weishaupt's idea of creating an "enlightened Freemasonry" began to fail. Knigge believed that one of the main reasons for this was Weishaupt's anti-religious sentiments. Although Knigge could understand the source of such sentiments (Weishaupt lived most of his life under the stifling grip of Catholicism in Bavaria), this was very disturbing in Protestant lands.
10. Recruitment of Freemasons
After some ups and downs in society and unsuccessful attempts to recruit Freemasons, the Illuminati population began to skyrocket after Charles IV Theodore took the throne of Bavaria. Why did it happen. Although initially the Elector Charles IV Theodore liberalized the laws, he eventually abolished them. This led to a backlash among the educated classes, who then became interested in the ideas of the Illuminati.
11. Refusal of theologian Johann Caspar Lavater
While the Illuminati Order has been relatively successful in recruiting high-ranking members of society, there have also been notable failures. The Swiss poet and theologian Johann Kaspar Lavater refused Knigga to join the order. He did not believe that the humanitarian and rationalistic goals of the group could be achieved by secret means.
12. Conflict of Illuminati and Rosicrucians
In the early 1780s, just a few years after their founding, the Illuminati came into conflict with the Rosicrucians, who were essentially a kind of Freemason. Although the Rosicrucians were Protestants, they advocated monarchy and not a rationalist technocracy like the Illuminati. A technocracy is a (hypothetical) management system made up of scientists, engineers, or other experts in similar fields.
13. Opposition to the monarchy
Despite the fact that the Illuminati were relatively few, people began to learn about them in connection with the opposition of the Illuminati to the monarchy. Combined with the fact that many members held high positions in society, this led to tension and mistrust between the Illuminati, government and church.
14. Hunt for the Illuminati
Alarmed by the possibility of instability in the country, the Duke of Bavaria banned all secret societies in 1784. The hunt for the Illuminati began and Weishaupt was forced to flee Bavaria.
15. French Revolution
At the turn of the 19th century, several books and theories were published claiming that the Illuminati survived and that they were the ones behind the French Revolution. This conspiracy theory most likely originated as the ideals of the French Revolution were similar to those of the Illuminati.
Continuing the theme of the most mysterious communities in the world, the story about 10 scandalous secrets of freemasons that they are in no hurry to reveal to the rest of the world.