The Illuminati is a secret society that thrives off of the constant mystery of its existence. The secret society is thought to still be thriving today and some of our favorite celebrities such as Beyoncé and Madonna are said to be active members. This group origins date back to the late 1700s, when the idea of “enlightenment” began to thrive and flourish. Throughout the years,theories and ideas of the societies’ goals and morals have evolved and been questioned leaving everyone with different theories and beliefs of the group. What is the Illuminati to you?
The Illuminati is a secret society that was founded in 1776 by Adam Weishaupt who at the time was a German law professor. Weishaupt found great interest in the study of enlightenment, reason, and philanthropy because he felt that all these values could control and influence political decisions and ideas on a large scale. He grew up in Bavaria, which was heavily catholic at the time where the king and church didn’t allow enlightenment ideas or thoughts to be taught or passed around. The original group included five of his students that shared similar beliefs as Weishaupt. They held their first meeting in secret and created rules and requirements of anyone wanting to gain membership.
Beliefs and Morals
This secret society was said not to believe in the way religion was practiced and taught because it didn’t give a sense of freedom to each individual to interpret the messages differently. The Illuminati believed that he brought that sense of freedom to the Illuminati group. Weishupt believed that this group steered away from religious prejudices and promoted the ideas of universal happiness and social virtues. There were also a set of strict things that it took to gain membership to the society. These included strong reputations in well-known families, connections in the community and the most important general wealth.
From 1776 to around 1785, the secret society continued to spread and gained from 650 members to around 3,000 members. Throughout the nine years that had elapsed, the Illuminati had spread even to high level government and public officials. Once the king became aware of the existence of the secret society, he banned all secret societies in Bavaria including the Illuminati. Once the ban went into effect, members of the society stopped practicing the ideas created throughout the decade. This started a time period where the illuminati disappeared. During this time, people began to theorize and conspire all the former group’s ideals and beliefs.
The conspiracy theories began in 1797, when authors John Robison and Augustin Barruel wrote publications stating how the Illuminati lived on and had been the responsible force behind the French Revolution. Since then the theories have gone from the formation of a New World Order to satanic worshipping. However, none of the theories have been confirmed or denied, and can all be traced back to the documents written in the late 1700s. The Illuminati did not become such a known and popular theory until the internet made it easier to spread these ideas.
Present Day Beliefs
Today popular culture is full of references of the Illuminati. Our favorite celebrities including athletes, musicians, actors, etc. are said to be active members of the group. Theories are created through observation of behavior and interactions such as things that can be labeled as satanic worship and sacrificing. Celebrities such as Beyoncé, Prince, Kayne West, Madonna, and Katy Perry are some of the biggest names that continuously come up in the loop of the society that practice these things. Do they use this to their advantage or is a secret society really being exposed?
If the Illuminati isn’t a mysterious and complex society, what is? The little knowledge that we possess,that has been confirmed throughout history,makes you more anxious and eager to theorize. But how far will the knowledge that is unconfirmed take us to finding the truth? What began as a group that supposedly promoted free thinking turned into the world’s biggest conspiracy theory over time? There are tons of ideas surrounding the Illuminati,how do you choose what is a reasonable theory and what is not? When Weishupt created this group what did he believe would become of it? Regardless of if you choose to believe or not, you have to admit that this the Illuminati has become a worldwide fascination.
Baggini Julian. “Does the Illuminati control the world? Maybe it’s not such a mad idea.” The Guardian.
Encyclopedia Britannica. The Secret Society of the Illuminati. Youtube. 2016.
“The Illuminati: who are they and what do they control?” The Week. 2018. The Week
Vickery, Matthew. “The birthplace of the Illuminati.” Travel. Nov 2017. BBC.
Does the Illuminati Control the World?https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/feb/14/illuminati-running-world-not-mad-idea-questioning-hidden-power-elites-sane&psig=aovvaw0giexvdkei5eg55rf5vr06&ust=1553916959279438
This is a web source, from The Guardian. This article questions that power of the world’s elites and provides insights on the origin of the Illuminati. Baggini enlightens readers on the confirmed facts known about the secret society.
The Birthplace of the Illuminati
This article is a web source from BBC. It talks about how the Illuminati was founded on the principles of freedom from religious holds and thinking. Vickey talks about how the group has become one of the biggest conspiracies in the world.
The Illuminati: Who are they and what do they control?
This article is a web source found on The Week. The article dives in what the group is said to have controlled during its success years in the late 1700s. The article also talks about how celebrities use the society to create theories about themselves.