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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Illuminati is the name of many groups, modern and historical, real and fictitious, verified and alleged. Most
commonly The Illuminati refers specifically to the Bavarian Illuminati, an Enlightenment secret society, described below.
However, it often refers to an alleged shadowy conspiratorial organization that controls world affairs behind the scenes,
usually a modern incarnation or continuation of the Bavarian Illuminati. Illuminati is sometimes used synonymously with
New World Order.

1 Origins
1.1 Alumbrados of Spain
1.2 Illumins of France
1.3 Rosicrucians
1.4 Martinists
2 The Bavarian Illuminati
2.1 History
2.2 Cultural effect
3 See also
4 References
5 External links
5.1 Groups identifying themselves as Illuminati

Since 'Illuminati' translates to 'enlightened ones' in Latin, it is natural that several unrelated historical groups have
identified themselves as Illuminati. Often, this was due to claims of possessing gnostic texts or other arcane information
not generally available.
The designation illuminati was in use from the 14th century by the Brethren of the Free Spirit. In the 15th century the
name was adopted by other enthusiasts who claimed that the illuminating light came, not by communication from an
authoritative or secret source, but from within, as the result of exalted consciousness, or "enlightenment".

Alumbrados of Spain
To the gnostic class belong the alumbrados of Spain. The historian Marcelino Menndez y Pelayo found the name as
early as 1492 (in the form aluminados, 1498), and traced the group to a Gnostic origin. He thought their views were
promoted in Spain through influences from Italy. One of their earliest leaders, born in Salamanca, was a labourer's
daughter known as La Beata de Piedrahita. She came to the notice of the Inquisition in 1511, by claiming to hold
colloquies with Jesus and the Virgin Mary; some high patronage saved her from a rigorous denunciation. (Menndez
Pelayo, Los Heterodoxos Espaoles, 1881, vol. V.). Ignatius of Loyola, while studying at Salamanca in 1527, was brought
before an ecclesiastical commission on a charge of sympathy with the alumbrados, but escaped with an admonition.
Others were not so fortunate. In 1529 a congregation of nave adherents at Toledo was subjected to whippings and
imprisonment. Greater rigors followed, and for about a century alleged connection with the alumbrados sent many to the
Inquisition, especially at Crdoba.

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Illumins of France
The movement (under the name of Illumins) seems to have reached France from Seville in 1623, and attained some
following in Picardy when joined (1634) by Pierce Guerin, cur of Saint-Georges de Roye, whose followers, known as
Gurinets, were suppressed in 1635.
A century later, another, more obscure body of Illumins came to light in the south of France in 1722, and appears to have
lingered till 1794, having affinities with those known contemporaneously in the United Kingdom as 'French Prophets', an
offshoot of the Camisards.

Different from the llumins were the Rosicrucians, who claimed to have originated in 1407, but rose to notice in 1614
when their main text Fama Fraternitatis appeared. As a secret society, they claimed to combine the possession of esoteric
principles of religion with the mysteries of alchemy. Their positions are described in three anonymous treatises from 1614
(mentioned in Richard and Giraud, Dictionnaire universel des sciences ecclsiastiques, Paris 1825), as well as in the
Confessio Fraternitatis of 1615. Rosicrucians also claimed heritage from the Knights Templar.

Later, the title Illuminati was applied to the French Martinists, which had been founded in 1754 by Martinez Pasqualis,
and to their imitators the Russian Martinists, headed about 1790 by Professor Schwartz of Moscow; both were occultist
cabalists and allegorists, absorbing eclectic ideas from Jakob Boehme and Emanuel Swedenborg.

The Bavarian Illuminati

A movement of freethinkers that were the most radical offshoot of The Enlightenment whose adherents were given the
name Illuminati (but who called themselves "Perfectibilists") was founded on May 1, 1776 by Jesuit-taught Adam
Weishaupt (d. 1830), who was the first lay professor of canon law. The group has also been called the Illuminati Order,
the Order of the Illuminati, and the Bavarian Illuminati. In 1777, Karl Theodor, Elector of Palatinate, succeeded as ruler
of Bavaria. He was a proponent of Enlightened Despotism and in 1784, his government banned all secret societies,
including the Illuminati and the Freemasons.
The structure of the Illuminati soon collapsed, but while it was in existence many influential intellectuals and progressive
politicians counted themselves as members. Its members were supposedly drawn primarily from Masons and former
Masons, and although some Masons were known to be members there is no evidence that it was supported by
Freemasons. The members pledged obedience to their superiors, and were divided into three main classes: the first, known
as the Nursery, encompassed the ascending degrees or offices of Preparation, Novice, Minerval and Illuminatus Minor;
the second, known as the Masonry, consisting of the ascending degrees of Illuminatus Major and Illuminatus dirigens, the
latter also sometimes called Scotch Knight; the third, designated the Mysteries, was subdivided into the degrees of the
Lesser Mysteries (Presbyter and Regent) and those of the Greater Mysteries (Magus and Rex). Relations with Masonic
lodges were established at Munich and Freising in 1780.
The order had its branches in most countries of the European continent; its members were reportedly around 2,000
members in the span of 10 years. The scheme had its attraction for literary men, such as Goethe and Herder, and even for
the reigning dukes of Gotha and Weimar. Internal rupture preceded its downfall, which was effected by an edict of the
Bavarian government in 1785.

Cultural effect
The Bavarian Illuminati have cast a long shadow in popular history thanks to the writings of their opponents; the lurid

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allegations of conspiracy that have colored the image of the Freemasons have practically opaqued that of the Illuminati. In
1797, Abb Augustin Barrul published Memoirs Illustrating the History of Jacobinism outlining a vivid conspiracy
theory involving the Knights Templar, the Rosicrucians, the Jacobins and the Illuminati. A Scottish Mason and professor
of natural history named John Robison started to publish Proofs of a Conspiracy Against all the Religions and
Governments of Europe in 1798. Robison claimed to present evidence of an Illuminati conspiracy striving to replace all
religions with humanism and all nations with a single world government.
More recently, Antony C. Sutton suggested that the secret society Skull and Bones was founded as the American branch
of the Illuminati; others think Scroll and Key had Illuminati origins, as well. Writer Robert Gillette claimed that these
Illuminati ultimately intend to establish a world government through assassination, bribery, blackmail, the control of
banks and other financial powers, the infiltration of governments, mind control, and by causing wars and revolution to
move their own people into higher positions in the political hierarchy.
Thomas Jefferson, on the other hand, claimed they intended to spread information and the principles of true morality. He
attributed the secrecy of the Illuminati to what he called "the tyranny of a despot and priests".
Both seem to agree that the enemies of the Illuminati were the monarchs of Europe and the Church; Barrul claimed that
the French revolution (1789) was engineered and controlled by the Illuminati through the Jacobins, and later theorists
even claimed their responsibility for the Russian Revolution (1917), although the order was officially shut down before
1789. Few historians give credence to these views; they regard such claims as the products of over-fertile imaginations.
Conspiracy theorists highlight the link between the Illuminati and Freemasonry. It is also suggested that the United States'
founding fathers some being Freemasons were rife with corruption from the Illuminati. Often the symbol of the
all-seeing pyramid in the Great Seal of the United States is cited as an example of the Illuminati's ever-present watchful
eye over Americans.
While Weishaupt's group did not survive into the 19th century, several groups have since used the name Illuminati to
found their own rites, claiming to be the Illuminati. Such groups include the Grand Lodge Rockefeller of David Goldman
(USA), Orden Illuminati of Gabriel Lpez de Rojas (Spain), and The Illuminati Order of Solomon Tulbure (USA).
In 1995, Gabriel Lpez de Rojas founded Illuminati Order in Barcelona, Spain, elaborating the Operative Rite of The
Illuminati of Bavaria. This Rite is based on the Rite of the Illuminati and high degrees of Scottish Rite of 33 degrees. The
System of its Illuminati Grand Master, Gabriel Lpez de Rojas, is the Redism. This system is based on the lemma HOMO
EST DEUS, or "man is god". See Suitheism.
Groups describing themselves as Illuminati say they have members and chapters (lodges) throughout the world.
About the time that the Illuminati were outlawed in Bavaria, the Roman Catholic Church prohibited its members from
joining Masonic lodges, on pain of excommunication. This was done as a general edict, since the Church believed many
lodges to have been infiltrated and subverted by the Illuminati, but was not able to accurately ascertain which ones. This
rule was relaxed only in the late 20th century.
In conclusion, although there is little in the way of damning evidence for a trans-generational network of conspirators
lurking in the shadows, the ideas and philosophies originating, or propelled, by the Bavarian Illuminists, the Freemasons,
and other likeminded groups, have held considerable unpublicized effect on world events if only due to the writings by
and about them, and in the institutions which were subsequently founded, or in the course of the natural spread of ideas.

See also
Conspiracy theory
Council on Foreign Relations
David Icke - maintains that the world is ruled by a secret group called "The Elite", or "Illuminati"
Illuminati in popular culture
Jordan Maxwell

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New World Order

Robert Anton Wilson
Secret Society
Dan Brown

1911 Encyclopdia Britannica: "Illuminati"
America's Secret Establishment: An Introduction to the Order of Skull & Bones Antony C. Sutton (Trine Day,
LLC, 2003)
Cooper, Milton William (1991). Behold a Pale Horse. Light Technology Publications. ISBN 0929385225.
The Cosmic Conspiracy Deyo, Stan (Adventures Unlimited Press, Illinois, 1994)
The Illuminati 666 Sutton, Josiah William (Teach Services, Inc, New York, 1983).
Proof of a Conspiracy Against all the Religions and Governments of Europe Robison, John A.M. (New York,
Die Korrespondenz des Illuminatenordens. Bd. 1, 1776-81. Ed. by Reinhard Markner, Monika Neugebauer-Wlk
and Hermann Schttler. - Tbingen, Max Niemeyer, 2005. - ISBN 3-484-10881-9
They Cast No Shadows: A Collection of essays on the Illuminati, revisionist history and suppressed technology
Desborough, Brian(Writers Club Press/, 2002) ISBN 0595219578
Barkun, Michael (2003). A Culture of Conspiracy: Apocalyptic Visions in Contemporary America. University of
California Press, Berkeley. ISBN 0520238052.

External links
Illuminati and Freemasonry ( )
The Enlightenment, Freemasonry, and The Illuminati by Conrad Goeringer
Thomasine Church (
The Illuminati and the CFR by Myron Fagan (
An Illuminati-based RPG (
A Bavarian Illuminati Primer by Trevor W. McKeown (
Illuminati Conspiracy Archive (
alt.illuminati FAQ (
The Illuminati and the Galactic Federation
The Catholic Encyclopedia entry on Illuminati (
O.A.I. (
Origins of the Illuminati? ( A Discussion
The Robert Anton Wilson Website ( (
Project for the Exposure of Hidden Institutions (

Groups identifying themselves as Illuminati

Church of Gnostic Luminism (
Orden Illuminati (
The Illuminati Order (
Illuminati Order USA (
Retrieved from ""
Categories: Secret societies | Conspiracy theories

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