TW Viewpoint | The Illuminati: Threat or Myth?

November 26, 2021 | Stuart Wachowicz

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Is there a grand conspiracy to rule the world and covertly place earth's inhabitants in a state of servitude to a wealthy, power-crazed group of elites?

Any who have delved into such ideas have soon discovered tales of the "Illuminati." The very name sends shivers down the spine of those who believe in the existence of this secret society, which is apparently exercising control through powerful members towards global hegemony.

Websites, online videos, and other sources are quick to identify celebrities such as Beyoncé, the Rothschilds, Henry Kissinger, President Biden and even Queen Elizabeth as key members. Some even allege that Queen Elizabeth runs a cloning center replicating celebrities in preparation for the global takeover.

Many are the believers in this clandestine, yet supposedly powerful group of Illuminati who operate under the mystic symbol of the all-seeing eye of Providence as they realize their goal of the New World Order.

How did such ideas become so popular? Does such a group really exist? Should you be concerned?

Let's explore the story.

According to Britannica Online, "Illuminati," had its origins when a young lady, who had become a nun in the Dominican order in Spain, claimed to be able to converse with Jesus and Mary. King Ferdinand supported her, but the leader of the Dominican order sought the Pope’s help to place her before the Inquisition to determine the legitimacy of her story. She was protected by Spanish mobility. This gave rise to the group known as the Alumbrados ("enlightened"). Despite severe suppression by the Inquisition, the movement did become established in France, where they were known as "Illuminés".

Initially they were a religious mystic order, seeking enlightenment from vision and meditation. Some were involved in occult beliefs. Likely for protection against persecution in a very intolerant time, they made their order and its beliefs secret. Groups took numerous forms in different areas of Europe and North Africa. It appears they largely dissipated over time.

Another group, most closely linked to the name "Illuminati" was founded in 1776, in the then independent principality of Bavaria. This time it does not appear to have been a religious movement but consisted of a group of Bavarian intellectuals dedicated to free thought. They had a strongly republican sentiment. The founder was a former Jesuit and professor named Adam Weishaupt. Replacing European Christianity with a religion of reason was their goal. The members, a relatively small and select group of similar-minded men, pledged allegiance to their superiors and apparently organized their structure to allow for an intake of new members.

Young men of rank, wealth and good education were recruited. At their high point they appear to have had about 2000 members from across Europe and Britain. However, in 1785 the Government of Bavaria moved to disband and ban the movement, and the Bavarian Illuminati gradually dissipated and faded out of existence.

So how is it that today we have rumors and stories about the Illuminati being a group that is on the verge of taking control and establishing a new world order?

In July 2020, journalist Sophia Galer, published an article on the BBC website entitled, "The Accidental Invention of the Illuminati Conspiracy". This is a remarkable article, which chronicles, not the continuance of the ancient Illuminati, but the modern creation of a mythology. Ms. Galer recounts the work of author and broadcaster David Bramwell who has uncovered the real origins of the present supposed Illuminati conspiracy. He points out that the Illuminati we hear about today has little to do with the secret mission of the Bavarians or Jesuits, but rather:

It all began somewhere amid the Summer of Love and the hippie phenomenon, when a small, printed text emerged: Principia Discordia.

The book was, in a nutshell, a parody text for a parody faith – Discordianism – conjured up by enthusiastic anarchists and thinkers to bid its readers to worship Eris, goddess of chaos. The Discordian movement was ultimately a collective that wished to cause civil disobedience, practical jokes and hoaxes.

A writer for Playboy Magazine, Robert Wilson, took one of the principles of the book, that malevolent activities could stimulate social change by causing people to question reality, and along with one of the original authors of the text (Kerry Thornley), created a new mythology with the Illuminati at the heart of a global conspiracy. To shake society up, they attempted to bring chaos through the willful spreading of disinformation through multiple portals of counterculture.

At the time, Wilson worked for the men's magazine Playboy. He and Thornley started sending in fake letters from readers talking about this secret, elite organisation called the Illuminati. Then they would send in more letters – to contradict the letters they had just written.

"So, the concept behind this was that if you give enough contrary points of view on a story, in theory – idealistically – the population at large start looking at these things and think, 'hang on a minute'," says Bramwell. "They ask themselves, 'Can I trust how the information is presented to me?' It's an idealistic means of getting people to wake up to the suggested realities that they inhabit – which of course didn't happen quite in the way they were hoping."

Bramwell describes how he and Wilson saw the Illuminati myth spread far and wide. Wilson then wrote "The Illuminati Trilogy", which reportedly had the Illuminati behind great "cover-ups" of the day. Today this mythology is possibly the most widely believed "conspiracy theory," but it is all fake.

It is amazing that this effect of creating a myth that many believe was possible long before the internet. Today however the websites and social media platforms propagate such fantasies with ease, relying on a population that lacks either historical, scientific, or geographic awareness.

Conspiracy theories thrive because they seem to provide a simple answer to a perceived problem. The person does not have to worry about contradictory facts, because they are unaware of them. When people feel their views are unheard, that they lack power or are the victims of injustice, conspiracy theories can plant seeds that lead to social unrest.

When people feel their views are unheard, or that they lack power, fake conspiracy theories can plant seeds that foster social protest movements, even violent activism and neo-Marxist suppression of ideas just because they are deemed unpopular or politically incorrect.

While the vast majority of conspiracy theories circulating in our society are hoaxes, there does exist a warning concerning the end of the age in an ancient source. The Israelite prince named Isaiah, who according to Rabbinic tradition was the first cousin of the Jewish king Uzziah, carried a message to Israel of his day that is largely accepted as a prediction and a warning to a family of great nations at the end of the age:

… Speaking oppression and revolt, conceiving and uttering from the heart words of falsehood. Justice is turned back, and righteousness stands afar off; for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter (Isaiah 59:13–14).

There is at least one conspiracy afoot on this planet—it is not the Illuminati or some other fictional concern, but it is very real and one can escape its deceptive grasp. To learn more about this watch our Viewpoint Commentary, "Is it a Conspiracy?"

Watch The Illuminati: Threat or Myth? on YouTube at Tomorrow's World Viewpoint