The Illuminati crop up everywhere these days. If you Google Illuminati you get reams and reams of bumph with dubious reliability. The word now stands for a hidden, secretive, evil bunch of men who are trying to either take control of the world’s resources, or trying to get Satan to be captain of the universe using modern media as pawns. As I said in the last article, maybe there are shadowy charlatans shackling us to the grind. Whatever.
This article is about the actual history of the actual Illuminati who were actually real. It turns out they were pretty enlightened dudes as the name suggests.
They started out life as a secret society called the Bavarian Illuminati in the enlightenment-era on May 1st, 1776 in Ingolstadt. They were formed to oppose superstition, religious and state control over the masses and to promote gender equality. Quite noble and forthright objectives. Very forward thinking for the mid 18th Century. They modeled their structure on the masons and vowed pledges of secrecy. The leader, Adam Weishaupt, or ‘Brother Spartacus’ to colleagues, initially wanted to call them the “Perfectibilists” which is nowhere near as cool and sinister sounding.
The Bavarian Illuminati boasted as many as 2000 members over their 10 year life span. Their set up was a complex nexus of spies and counter spies, all working in isolated cells, reporting back to people they didn’t know. Adam was a Mason and introduced an unpopular project of “illumination, enlightening the understanding by the sun of reason, which will dispel the clouds of superstition and of prejudice” which sounds pretty darned modern.
He later developed his enlightenment theories further, believing that through education humans could once again live along side nature in a safe and communal atmosphere without the need for state or religion hammering us down. So he was a kind of olden days hippy anarchist. I like the cut of his jib.
When Karl Theodor came in to power he put a ban on all secret societies, partly thanks to pressure from the Roman Catholic Church who kind of liked having the secret control in their sweaty palms thanks. Just for a change. Karl was a fan of Enlightened Despotism which means that he liked freedom of speech and thought etc but he was still the man in charge and not to be frigged with. This was the death blow for the Illuminati and they fizzled out, having had all of their secret documents stolen and published.
Some modern groups claim to have their roots in the order of the Illuminati in Bavaria but there’s no hard proof and they certainly don’t seem to wield any power. It’s a shame that such a bright minded bunch of Germanics had their name stolen and twisted.