Perfectibilists: The 18th Century Bavarian Order of the Illuminati
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John
Gabriel Albinet created one of the posters for Peladan's salons. Author claims Albinet also designed the OTO lamen.
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The Kassel publication of Fama contained a reply to the Rosicrucian Brothers by Haselmayer (from 1612), and a preface with an account of the Jesuits arresting and imprisoning him because of it:
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The Age of Enlightenment was in full swing: an explosion of philosophy, science, the resurgence of hermeticism and occult experimentation all competed directly with the traditional teachings of the Church, and the Jesuit monopoly, in the Universities and Colleges.
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Concurrent with the rise of Deism, Freemasonry, and Illuminism, the “enlightened” search for a “natural religion,” and opposition to ecclesiastical dogmatism, also brought about the decline in Jesuit hegemony … and an ensuing bitter struggle.
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In 1712 the last execution for witchcraft occurred in England; in 1714 witch trials were abolished in Prussia. In 1715 an Italian Jesuit missionary, Castiglione, arrived in China; in 1716 the Chinese abolished Christian teachings. In 1717 Freemasonry was formalized, with the establishment of the first Grand Lodge in London.
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Reason, logic, and experiment were eagerly pursued with the zeal of religious faith—no less suceptible to dogmatism.
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First published in 1751, the French Encyclopédie paid homage to the allegory. The title page of the first edition featured a winged Lucifer, burning flame atop his head with caduceus in hand, amidst a plethora of symbolism, including the Masonic triangle along with the square and compass.
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John
Lucifer with caduceus and flame above head
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Rationalism swept through Germany, more especially the illusion that man’s faculty could establish and secure a single, true, and salvation-guaranteeing religion. This rationalism expressed itself in pamphlets, in systems, in conversations, in secret societies and in many other institutions. It was not satisfied—indeed it did not even bother—to deny the distinctive doctrines of the Catholic church; its basis was rather the simple assertion: nothing in positive Christianity is acceptable except its “reasonable morality,” the doctrine that God is the father of all things, and the proposition ...more
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Our age is, in especial degree, the age of criticism, and to criticism everything must submit. Religion through its sanctity and law-giving through its majesty may seek to exempt themselves from it. But they then awaken just suspicion, and cannot claim the sincere respect which reason accords only to that which has been able to sustain the test of free and open examination.
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“For Hegelians,” according to Antony C. Sutton,“the State is almighty and seen as ‘the march of God on earth.’ Indeed, a State religion. Progress in the Hegelian State is through contrived conflict: the clash of opposites makes for progress. If you can control the opposites, you dominate the nature of the outcome.”
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The Order was secret, hierarchical, and heavily modeled on the Jesuits.
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The Order was therefore always represented in communications between members as a circle with a dot in the center.
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In terms of religion, mysticism and the occult, Perfectibilists have been associated with antinomianism, sects adhering to the teachings of Dionysius the Areopagite, the Hesychasts, the Jansenists, the Fraticelli, the Brethren of the Free Spirit, the Anabaptists, the Quakers, the Beghards, the Cathars or Albigensians, and the Familists.
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We had not among us, properly speaking, secret chiefs; but recourse was had to a plan by which all exhortations to duty and blame for misconduct were not conveyed immediately from a known superior, whom his subordinates knew to be a man of like passions and frailties with themselves, but as if from a higher and invisible hand (!!). This was the persona mystica, Basilius, with which name all the answers to the (Q.L.) quaestiones loci among us were subscribed.
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the Rosicrucian Superiors sent out a circular; it fell into the hands of the Illuminati. Entitled The Illuminati Unmasked, the official communiqué was a stern warning to be on guard against the Illuminati—the Deists and Socinians44 who illegally congregate and read from the works of Voltaire and Helvétius; who use Freemasonry to undermine the basis of religious faith, and try to convince people of the validity of Pierre Bayle —that is, the longing for a secular constitution, universal in scope and encompassing the entirety of Europe.
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The Illuminati, “and in particular their Minervals, were the most cunning children of Adonai,” and would surely be consumed in fire and brimstone at the Final Judgment.
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John
Helvétius On Mind
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the document charged the order with a variety of offenses: … holding such vicious moral and religious sentiments as that life should be controlled by passion rather than reason, that suicide is justifiable, that one may poison one’s enemies, and that religion should be regarded as nonsense and patriotism as puerility.
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Whereas all communities, societies and associations without approval from a public authority and the confirmation of the Monarch are illegal, prohibited by law, suspect and dangerous things in of themselves, His Electoral Highness has decided not to tolerate them in his State,
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Weishaupt is dismissed from his post at Ingolstadt, ostensibly on the grounds of trying to procure “ungodly books” and literature for the university’s library: such as Pierre Bayle’s Dictionnaire Historique et Critique [Historical and Critical Dictionary] (1697-1702) and the writings of Richard Simon, whose works were critical of the Old and New Testament.
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When nature lays too heavy a burthen upon us, it is to suicide that we are to apply for relief. Patet Exitus. An Illuminee, they would tell us, should make away with himself rather than betray his Order; and they also represent a secret voluptuousness to be inherent to suicide.
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Tous les Roi et tous le Pretres Sont des Fripons et des traitres.
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The Illuminee who wishes to rise to the highest degree must be free from all religion; for a religionist (as they call every man who has any religion) will never be admitted to the highest degrees….
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the long-suspected Illuminatus, poet/journalist Johann Baptist Edler von Alxinger.