Secret Societies: Free Masons

Name of Organization: Free Masons (also known as Free & Accepted Masons, Masonry, Masonic Brothers, Mason Fraternity)

Date of Origin:
Late 16th Century – Present (though claims itself to be more than 6,000 years old which is explained bellow).

Historic Significance:
Diminishing of religious dominance in Europe and shift to secularism and philosophy of the origin of the universe,  of the self and of the living beings.

Origin:
A hierarchical fraternity (male brotherhood organization) that provides a space for members to meet, network, learn, discuss and push forward the collective ideas into action while keeping all the inner goings of the organization in secret. The Dominance of Britain and France over major parts of the world through colonies assisted in the wide spread of the fraternity. This lead to the transfer of the Fraternity to the United States, other European countries and the colonies world-wide.

Founders:
Politically/Socially Involved Figures, Philosophers,  Royal Counselors, Financiers, Traders, Army men.  Mostly which had financial/social power and ambitions to go beyond the grip of the religious figures and kings as the representatives of God on Earth.

Work:
  • Researches, studies, books, press and media publishing. This aims at pushing forward their ideas/plans through all kinds of academic material, novels, researches, business magazines, media, press…etc.
  • Rituals, ceremonies, handshakes and symbols involving allegory to actual masonry(building & construction), Geometry, the Zodiac, Judaism and myths. Due to linking to those myths, geometry and old building skills(art of masonry) the fraternity gives itself a mythical start date of 4,000 years before Christ. This aims at creating a spiritual/intellectual attachment, discipline, commitment and loyalty of the members to the organization as something of an older presence than any other organization/state/country.
  • Charity, social services (home shelters, educational scholarships, medical assistance, philanthropy through public organizations) this aims at both helping the community and gaining the public’s support and sympathy as people of good heart and intentions.

Organizations Directly Related or Allied to Masonry:
Shriners, Order of DeMolay, Job’s Daughter, Tall Cedars of Lebanon, Grotto Movper, Rainbow Girls,  Daughters of the Nile, AAONMS, Knights of Columbus, Order Militia Crucifica, Order of the Eastern Star, Order of the Solar Temple, Order Templi Orientis, Rosicrucians, Knights of Solomon , amongst others.

Secret Societies: Jesuits

Name of Organization: Jesuits ( Society of Jesus)

Date of Origin: August 12, 1534 AD – Present

Motto
: Ad Maiorem Dei Gloriam (For the greater glory of God)

Historic Significance:
Diminishing of religious dominance in Europe and major shift of power to finance and military.  Dominance of Britain and France over major parts of the world through colonies. The Vatican was searching for ways to get back in power.

Founder:
Ignatius of Loyola

Origin & History:
Male Catholic Religious Order that does missionary work in Jerusalem or wherever the Pope requests after noticing the decrease of enthusiasm and commitment to religion in Europe. Started work in Italy and spread throughout Europe and the world. Currently headed by a religious figure, called the Black Pope for several reason one of which is that they grew strong enough to be as strong as the Vatican itself in terms of finances and affiliated institutions. It was suppressed by the Vatican on 1773 and restored on 1814. Currently has its biggest membership and power in India, surprisingly the biggest Islamic groups are also currently situated in India.

Current Work
:
– Education(Colleges, Secondary Schools, Seminaries, Research Centers…)
– Missionaries (Transforming non Christians into Catholics, preventing the spread of Protestantism)

Secret Societies: Knights Templar

Name of Organization: Knights Templar

Date of Origin: 1199 AD – 1314

Historic Significance: Crusades from 1095 – 1314

Motto: Not for self, but for God

Founders: Christian French knight Hugues de Payens & his relative Godfrey de Saint-Omer

Work: Western Christian military order said to be nine in number at the beginning– had the mandate of protecting Christian pilgrims who were en route to the Holy Land to visit the shrines sacred to their faith.

Somewhere between the years of AD 1118 – 1120, King Baldwin II granted the group quarters in a wing of the Royal Palace on the Temple Mount (the Al Aqsa Mosque).

End: King Philip IV had the Templars arrested on October 13, 1307 for becoming corrupt, misusing their wealth and power, and for blasphemy.

In 1312 the Templars were officially dissolved by Pope Clement V at the Council of Vienne. Although the Templars were not found guilty of the crimes they were charged with, it was felt that the reputation of the Order had fallen to so low a state as to warrant dissolving the Order.

On March 18th, 1314 the last Grand Master of the Knights Templar, Jacques de Molay, was burned at the stake, for having recanted his earlier confessions of guilt.

The remaining Knights Templar after the suppression joined the Hospitallers and changed the naming to Knights of Rhodes or also known as Knights of Malta* which still exist until today as a philanthropic organization that focuses on medical assistance.

(*) Information about the Knights of Malta are given in a previous post.

Secret Societies: Hospitallers of St. John of Jerusalem / Knights of Rhodes / Knights of Malta

Ok so now for the second organization, and here I’d like to clarify why it is considered “secret”. Namely, no one is allowed to know from times of its initiation until today, the ongoings inside the society, the decisions, the plans nor the affiliated members unless they disclose it.
Name of Organization: Hospitallers of St. John of Jerusalem / Knights of Rhodes /  Knights of Malta
Date of Origin: 1099 AD – Present
Historic Significance: Crusades from 1095 – 1314
Founder: Thomas Gerald
Motto: Pro Fide, Pro Utilitate Hominum (For the faith, in service of mankind)
Origin & Work: The Hospitallers were a military/religious order founded to protect religious pilgrims from Europe to the holy land. They initiated and managed hospitals in Jerusalem during& after crusades to provide medical care for the injured and the needy. They took care of Christian knights, warriors and followers in times of war and peace as well.
Following the liberation of the Holy Land by the Islamic forces, they departed out of Jerusalem by Saladin. They moved to Rhodes in Cyprus and changed many of there name, tactics and field of work entirely from protecting Christian pilgrimages and warriors to fighting against Islam .
Later, the Knights of Rhodes were kicked out of Cyprus by a wave of Islamic forces and the remaining knights were allowed to withdraw to Sicily. After few years, the king of Sicily gave the knights Malta as a headquarters for a certain fee in return, from there on they were known as Knights of Malta. In Malta again the knights changed their tactics and field of work from fighting on the ground to protecting the Christian sea trade routes and navies from and too the Levant(today known as Lebanon, Palestine, Syria and Jordan).
Later on Malta was overtook by Napoleon and the knights were dispersed into Europe loosing much of their income and power due to the many political/religious changes in Europe.  Early 1800’s the knights gathered themselves in Russia and from there tried to re-establish the links in Europe.
In WWI and afterwards the resumed their activity mainly focusing on medical care and found themselves in much need in Europe.
Today, the Knights of Malta, known as the Sovereign Order of Knights of Malta (SMOM) holds a sovereign status, has diplomatic relations with more than a hundred countries, an observer position in the UN, issues its own passports, has its own rules..etc.

Secret Societies: House of Wisdom – دار الحكمة

The first thing I will be talking about is Secret Societies and so I will start with the first documented society and move forward in chronological order.
Note that I would like to repeat and stress on the fact that what I will be presenting is informational and aims at giving a quick glimpse about the numerous societies and clubs that I will be skimming through. The aim is not to promote or demote any society/club.

Name of Organization:
House of Wisdom (دار الحكمة)

Date of Origin:
1004 AD – mid 1060s

Historic Significance:
Reign of Abbasids over the Arab/Muslim world from 750 – 1258. Specifically Al Qadir was ruling during 991 – 1031.

Founder
: Hassan Al Sabbah

Origin
: Hassan Al Sabbah, after learning the secrets of the Ismaili faith (a sub-sect of Shia) in Egypt, returned to Persia to take his revenge from Omar El Khayyam after  he was disgraced by Omar infront of the Sultan who dismissed him from his governmental position. Hassan worked in secrecy to re-attain power by spreading his Ismaili beliefs in secret, gathering followers and building a stronghold in Mount of Alamut where Dar Al Hikmah produced “Assassins” that terrorized the government of Persia.

Work
: The Assassins (or what was then the Asaseyoun). It is claimed that modern word of “Assasin” comes from that time, yet others some people claim that hey were called Hashasheen due to wide spread rumors that those individuals were drugged with Hasheesh(marijuana) to brain wash them and motivate them to do the assassinations.
PS: For further info, feel free to research on the keywords/tags I have on this post.
Enjoy!