Tag Archives: esotericism

Fraternitas Saturni (Dieselpunk Era Spirituality)

 Fraternitas Saturni saturn planetary magick

Fraternitas Saturni is an extremely influencial and long running German occult society which is technically still operating today.

The Fraternitas Saturni was begun in 1925 as a splinter from another society, Collegium Pansophicum as a result of a dispute between the Collegium’s founder, Heinrich Traenker’ and Aleister Crowley.

Here’s the deal: Heinrich Traenker was a bookseller who founded an occult group, the Collegium Pansophicum. Like every single occultish entity for the past 400 years, it invented a backstory in which it claimed to be a direct descendant of the fictional Rosicruciansof the 17th century. However, the type of magick it practiced was pretty standard for the 1920s.

fraternitas satruni


They had a  33 degree initiation system straight out of Freemasonry.”Yogic and meditative techniques combined with Astrological and Planetary Magic held a significant role in their Work, and Crowley’s Thelema and Sex Magic played a part in their Work. Probably their biggest contribution to current magical practice was the development and use of the idea of an egregor or group generated spirit that acted as a magical powerhouse and guide for the Brotherhood.” It is a Luciferian system, positing a Gnostic idea that what passes for God in the dominant monotheistic religions is actually an evil Being intent on Man’s subjugation and imprisonment, and there is a higher God who wished to see Mankind freed and thus gives him the knowledge to rise out of his chains. (The apple from the Tree of Knowledge is not a bad thing, it’s a good thing).

Crowley’s sex magick and his new religion Thelema were big influences and thus one day in 1925 Crowley popped on over to Germany to visit for the Weida Conference. Corwley had his magick society the OTO and the conference was expected to proclaim both Crowley’s world leadership oft eh OTO and his position as World Teacher.

Crowley stayed with Heinrich. However Crowley’s ego, pompousness amd stubbroness was always too big for any room and when it ran up against Heinrich’s own stubborness, chaos ensued. The two men ended up quarreling constantly and hating each other. Heinrich Traenker finally went to the German authorities to have Crowley kicked out of Germany.

The Collegium Pansophicum became split as well. There were those who wanted to keep Crowley’s Thelema, those who wished to expunge all things Crowley, and those who wanted to continue on without either Crowley or Heinrich in control of them. Thus the Fraternitas Saturni was founded. It kept Crowley’s Thelema mixed in with all their other interests, but never had any ties to Crowley or involvement with Traenker.

fraternitas saturni

Why Saturn? In a planetary based occult system, the planets represent different stages of spiritual consciousness as well as numerous other properties and aspects of reality and you can work your through the planets. As you master each planet you master that state of being and the forces of reality associated with it.

Thus there is the concept of Saturn gnosis. The idea is that everyone is bound in a mechanism of predetermined influences (karma, originally) ruled over by (or identical with) the demiurge Saturn. Everyone is everyone else’s tool. By magically transcending Saturn, they would free themselves, evolve to the Uranian sphere and become controllers of the Saturn-Uranian Age.

The Lodge flourished but after the Nazis took power it was shut down, as was every society, lodge and fellowship in Germany under the Nazis.

The FS was reformed in 1945 and although it has struggled, it still continues to this day.

If you want more info on their beliefs and practices, this comprehensive book is available in its entirety for free online:

fraternitas saturni

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Posted by on April 1, 2013 in Uncategorized


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Adonism (Dieselpunk Era Spirituality)


We have explored at length Victorian era spiritualities such as Spiritualism, Theosophy, The Golden Dawn amongst others, but we have yet to touch upon interesting versions from the Dieslepunk era of the 1920s through the 1940s.

We begin to correct that absence today. Welcome to Adonism, founded in 1925 by Franz Sattler.

Before commencing let’s give a quick snapshot of the esoteric and alternative spiritual landscape of the 1920s. The two fallen giants who ruled the landscape were Theosophy and Golden Dawn inspired western occultism. Theosophy was technically still around, but its founder, Helena Blavatsky had died and the new head of the society, Annie Besant was driving away old Theosophists in droves. The Golden Dawn had long since expired but groups carrying on their legacy were all the rage and a highly divisive, almost unbearably egotistical but extraordinarily influential Aleister Crowley was in his heyday and a force to contend with.

Upon this scene came the German “neopagan” religion of Adonism. Inspiration from both Theosophy and the post Golden Dawn method of degrees and magical practice can be seen and traced, but it was also quite original. It probably inherited a very gnostic mythology from theosophy and we’ll start there first.

Gnosticism is an ancient pre-Christian religion which ended up embracing Christianity wholeheartedly. During the first few centuries of Christianity’s existence it and the more Orthodox/Catholic version fought it out tooth and nail to be the main mode of the religion. Gnosticism lost.

Gnosticism poses that the god who created our universe is in fact a tainted/evil/bad god and there is another god beyond that who is the true Light. This simply idea is a key doctrine to numerous more modern spiritualities, Adonism amongst them.


Adonism claims that there are 5 main gods above all others:  Belus, Biltis, Adonis, Dido and Molchos.

Belus and Biltis are the parent gods. These are primordial and emerged from the primal Chaos from which all things spring. They had a son, Molchos. Molchos is a bad god. He created a world but this world was nightmarish and full of deformed monsters. When his parent Belus and Biltis caught wind of this they destroyed it.

Belus and Biltrus then went on to have two more children, really nice ones this time, Adonis and his sister Dido. They like to have sex. Adonis then created our world and it was good. He created humanity specially, basing them on the likeness of him and his sister.

But along came Molchos. Molchos  was jealous of the awesome world Adonis created, so he killed Adonis and took control of the world. Thus the world became tainted. However, borrowing from Egyptian mythology, Dido managed to resurrect her brother and he tried to protect humanity from Molchos.

Dido to the rescue

Dido to the rescue

Molchos is the inventor of monotheism. He is the god of the Bible, who attacks people with plagues and sickness. He has sent false prophets such as Moses, Jesus and Muhammad to convert people to monotheistic worship and worship him under his many guises such as Jehovah, Allah and Ormuzd (the god of Zoroastrianism.) Chtristianty, Judiasm, Islam, all monotheistic religions are false religions spread by the eveil one, attempts to subvert the truth and demonize the good Adonis by painting him as Satan.

Through the domination of these monotheistic religions, Adonists believe that Molchos maintained control of the world, but that in 2000 CE, Adonis will face Molchos in a final battle, defeating him and bringing about a Golden Age, which will last until the universe is once more subsumed under Chaos. As is usual these types of predictions, Adonis seems a little late in getting his act together and sticking to the schedule.

The most important virtue of Adonism is tolerance and the area in which he can practice it is boundless”, and also holding to a personal maxim: “To understand everything means to pardon everything”. Adonism also promotes sexual intercourse as being key to its religious practice.

Franz Sattler

All this was the brainchild of Franz Sattler and he officially began Adonism in 1925. The beginnings of it however stem back to his time in a WWI prison camp. He was German, but born in northern Bohemia (what is today the Czech Republic) and a member of the Austria-Hungarian Empire. He was not a soldier, but when the town he was in, Saloniki, was taken by French forces, he and his wife were sent to an internment camp where he spent some time.

He struck up a close friendship with the camp’s chief officer, M. Parizot, who was actively involved in the Theosophy an who got Franz greatly interested in it and things esoteric. Their discussion were so interesting and Franz’s interest so piqued that Parizot had his entire esoteric library transferred to the prison camp so Franz Sattler could read them. And read them he did.

Sattler was released in 1919. He ended up in Germany in 1922, but was caught doing spy work on behalf of the newly formed Czechoslovakia. He was imprisoned for 4 years. During this time he wrote down his esoteric ideas, wrote two books, The  Book of Oriental Secrets The Magical Bible, and created Adonism.

He got out in 1926 and immediately created the Adonistic Society (which according to its by laws was begun in 1925, a year before he actually got out). However esoteric societies always play hard and fast with their origins. Like every single other movement of the 200-300 years, EVERY ONE mind you, he backdated the origins of his religion to the ancient Chaldeans, Phoenicaians, Persians, Egyptians and Greeks. You cannot find an esoteric order, including Wicca, that does not backdate their origin stories. It is standard practice, it is always bullshit and it’s just the way it’s done.

The Adonistic Society survived up until the Nazis came along and made illegal every secret and esoteric society (we can discuss the relationship between the Thule Society and the SS at a later date). Sattler however was plagued by financial scandals. The guy was shady as hell.  “In 1929 he began magical cures and other items which included talismans, love potions and even powder that allegedly belonged to the dailai Lama to supplement this income, as well as founding a stock company called Olbia-Gold, through which he defrauded stock holders by telling them that he had discovered a gold treasure at the foot of Mt. Olympus in Greece. With all these money-making activities that he was involved with, he became embroiled in a financial scandal in 1932.”

That’s it for Adonism, although it’s amkr on history was made because it was incredibly influencial on those who were to become the major German esoterics, including Friedrich Quintscher and the famed and and still active Fraternis Saturni.

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Posted by on March 14, 2013 in Uncategorized


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What is Aghartha? (Other than an awesome live Miles Davis dark funk album)

Aghartha is a mythical hidden city somewhere under the Earth, usually somewhere in Asia. It’s often confused or even merged with Shambhala, another hidden city in Buddist lore. It’s quite the fixture in a great deal of New Agey and far out conspiracy thought, and like most staples in alternative spirituality has its roots in the Victorian Age.

Aghartha began as a rip of Shambhala, but instead of being centered around Asiatic mythology was instead constructed along Western Nordic mythology of which Wagner’s The Ring Cycle was a huge influence.

During the 1860s and 70s a writer named Louis Jacolliot, a French official living in Chandernagore, India wrote and published a number of books in which he combined his endless fascination in Western Occultism with bits and pieces of Hindu and Buddist myths. His claims were wild and imaginative but not accurate in any way towards Hindu, Buddist or Eastern thought. In fact his main activity was to use tidbits of whatever he picked up in the East to weave into a pastiche of ideas mostly dominated by western esotericism. He is quoted by Blavatsy and both his ideas on Aghartha as well as the Ascended Masters were brought into the Theosophical fold. Like everything else in Theosophy they wound up in New Age thought.

So, in 1871 Jacolliot published The Son of God in which he goes through the 15,000 year history of India as told to him by a wise Brahman. Except this “history” has nothing whatsoever to do with actual Indian or Hindu history or myths and everything to do with the Nordic myths that were all the rage in Europe thanks to Wagner and his epic Ring Cycle. “Agartta” is merely Asgard, with an ‘a’ added at the end to make it sound like a Sanskrit word.

A few years later, in 1886 Aghartha was picked up again and expanded upon by French occultist Alexandre Saint-Yves d’Alveydre who we will call Saint-Yves. He had been exposed to Jacolliot’s book through an Indian parrot shop owner who taught him some Sanskrit and stuff from Jacolliot’s book.

Saint-Yves d’Alveydre

Saint-Yves published The Mission of India in Europe in which he recounts his many adventures visiting the hidden city of Agartta by astral travel. Deep underground the Himalayas Agartta teams with life, populated by millions of humans more technologically and spiritually advanced than their above earth counterparts. They are ruled by a Sovereign Pontiff, posses lots of incredible mystical powers and are waiting to share their knowledge with us once we advance and “Christianity lives up to the commandments which were once drafted by Moses and Jesus.”  “When the Anarchy which exists in our world is replaced by the Synarchy.”

Saint-Yves’ pet political philosophy was Synarchy,  that is: “social differentiation and hierarchy with collaboration between social classes, transcending conflict between social and economic groups: synarchy, as opposed to anarchy. Specifically, Saint-Yves envisioned a Federal Europe (as well as all the states it has integrated) with a corporatist government composed of three councils, one for academia, one for the judiciary, and one for commerce. Just in case you were wondering.

Hidden City by Patricia Allingham

Still with me? Good. We now say goodbye to Saint-Yves as he bows off the world stage and say hello to Polish adventurer Ferdinand Ossendowski. Ferdinand Ossendowski is an absolutely fascinating man and it is unfortunate that we do not have time to delve into him too deeply today, but suffice to say he was in and out of Russia during the Russian Revolution, engaged in various anti-Revolutionary activities despite the fact that had a rocky history with the Imperialist government.

Regardless, when the Communists finally won Ossendowski and a group of Poles and White Russians escaped through SIberia into Mongola, Tibet and finally into Chinese controlled Mongolia where they were finally halted by Chinese Mongolia’s takeover by a mystic named Baron Roman Ungern von Sternberg (aka The Bloody Baron) who considered himself to be a reincarnation of the god of war. Ossendowski joined the baron’s army as a commanding officer of one of the self-defense troops and also briefly became The Baron’s political advisor and chief of intelligence.

Ferdinand Ossendowski, all in all kind of a badass.

What on earth does this have to do with anything? Well AFTER all this he returned to Poland and in 1922 wrote a book called Beasts, Gods and Men. In it he talks about all of his many adventures wandering the Asiatic landscape. In the first three chapters however, he lifts almost verbatum portions of Saint Yves’ ramblings on Agartta. He called it Agarti and with his book an international bestseller it stamped Aghartha onto the popular landscape indelibly.

In the 1940s editor Raymand Palmer at Amazing Stories published a myriad of fantastic tales involving Aghartha and when the New Age movement came around in the 70s and 80s, they went hog wild with it and have never let go. An example for instance would be this.

And there you have it. A wondrous hidden city, a fantastic, age old meme, borrowed from the Tibetans and reworked by some creative minds to embody the fanciful imaginations if not occasionally credulous belief systems of a century of westerners.


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Posted by on July 26, 2012 in Uncategorized


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Dr. Dee The Opera

You have GOT to check this out.

Musician Damon Albarn, who you might know from the band Gorillaz, wrote an opera about the infamous 16th century mathematician and occultist John Dee which was directed by Rufus Norris.

As you might imagine, all aspects of this make me basically explode in giddy fits of fanboy hysterics. Followers of this blog know John Dee is obviously a source of fascination, and the guy from Gorillaz writing an opera (small amounts of Elizabethan music and mostly modern balladeer type songs) has me ready to either change my pants or simply put on adult diapers in reaction.

And right i am to do so. Because LOOK at it! Yeah you gotta sit through the obligatory audience reaction “Wow that was really (positive expletive). I was (positive past tense verb)!” but it’s worth it because… LOOK at it:

Ooooooooohhhhhhh. I want to put caramel syrup on that and EAT it looks so awesome.

And thus songs are lovely. To wit:

AND it was inspired by Alan Moore. Alan ‘Watchmen/Marvelman/I’m A Wizard Now Harry’ Moore. What does that do to my geek meter? I’ll tell you:

The performance premiered in summer 2011 and just had another run at the English National Opera. If you want to know more about the piece in general i suggest watching this video.

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Posted by on July 22, 2012 in Uncategorized


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The Rosicrucians: Pt. 3: Sex, Magic, and Witches

By the mid 1800s there finally existed a plethora of Rosicrucian groups, all practicing various forms of western esotericism and occultism, most with a Christian mystical bent.  Many claimed to have descended from the original Rosicrucians of the 1400-1600s, but as no such thing actually existed (you have been reading the other posts up to here, right?), it is simply another example of how every single society of this nature will invent a good historical backstory to give themselves weight and credence. This is so prominent a practice that honestly, there are scarse few exceptions.

It wasn’t just Europe anymore. In America Rosicrucian groups were all the rage too. Back in the 1700s some German sects went to the New Land to build Rosicrucian communities in Pennsylvania. (For all my PA peeps:They set up shop in what is now Lancaster and Germantown) They had some influence on early American folklore and folk magic, but eventually were swallowed into the larger German communities that grew in those areas over the next century and a half of German immigration.

Here’s a good story and an interesting persoanlity:

In the mid 1800s there was a famous African American “Rosicrucian” named Paschal Randolph. At least he claimed to be a Rosicrucian, heck he wrote as the pseudonym ‘The Rosicrucian’, although he also said at one point his Rosicrucian teachings had come from within himself or were borrowed from occultists who came before him but were Rosicrucian in spirit. He was very, very big into sex magic, a lot of white women came to him to learn how to…. ****, and he was particularly sensational in that he insisted that orgasms were essential to mental health including FEMALE orgasms. Remember, this was a time in which doctors denied the very existence of the female orgasm.

Paschal Randolph.

Paschal was a barber in upstate New York in the 1840s when Spiritualism hit. (I’ve covered this fun time in history here.) He converted and was soon a practicing medium. Not only did he channel spirits but he claimed to be a clairvoyant physician who specialized in sexual problems. He gained a lot of notoriety and toured both the States and Europe. The spiritualism movement was a major proponent of the abolition of slavery and Randolph, especially being black, lectured extensively on this during his tours.

However, in 1858 he denounced Spiritualism and toured the ANTI-Spiritualism circuit, claiming mediums were the passive victims of evil spirits. The anti-spiritualism side consisted really of two positions. One,  which was later championed by Harry Houdini claimed the entire medium thing was a load of bullcock. The other, supported by various Christian churches claimed it was diabolical. Randolph came down on the diabolical side and thus his tours were financed by Christian churches.

Randolph ended up quarrelling strongly with the churches supporting him and finally left the States. He returned several years later and after a failed bid to enter politics began writing extensively on esoteric and occult philosphies and practices, often under the pseudonym “The Rosicrucian”. Most of his teachings revolved around skrying, that is putting oneself into a calm, open trance state and then staring into magic mirrors in order to perform clairvoyant feats such as astral travel, remote viewing and contact with spirits, and also practicing sex magic, where the two parties both focus their will on as common intention at the moment of orgasm. His sex magic teachings would go on to later inspired Crowley.

Randolph became very well known amongst a certain crowd, and began a number of Rosicrucian organizations including the Fraternitas Rosae Crucis, the oldest suriving Rosicrucian order in America. He actually launched numerous Orders, both Rosicrucian and other types of magical societies, but alas, he was infamously arrogant with a hot temper. No one could get along with him for a long period of time. He would start an Order, get into conflict with the members he would recruit and then dissolve the Order all within a matter of months. Again and again. However some of the Orders he founded survived, mostly because he would leave the state and hence the order and these became enormously influential to later esoteric and occult societies such as the Hermetic Brotherhood of Luxor.

Randolph’s life was filled with broken marriages, broken relationships, failed businesses and in 1949 he killed himself, although this is slightly disputed. There is a line of thought purports otherwise: “a later Supreme Master of the Fraternitas, stated that years after Randolph’s demise, in a death-bed confession, a former friend of Randolph had conceded that in a state of jealousy and temporary insanity, he had killed Randolph”

So, there’s one awesome story. But let us wrap up our forray into Rosicrucianism with one more personality and one more story: Gerald Gardner, the founder of Wicca.

Gerald Gardner. Holy crap i hope i look this awesome when i’m old. Seriously.

So, in 1920 a Rosicrucian Order was founded  in England by actor George Sullivan. Many of its members were former members of a Theosophy sponsored Rosicrucian group. This order, the Rosicrucian Order of the Crotona Fellowship sponsored a theater group in the New Forest area of Britain. Gerald Gardner, a retired civil servant who had worked in Malaya and written a book about the Malayan magical practices settled down there in the late 1930s, met this Rosiocrucian Order and its offshoot the New Coven. He developed an enormous interest in the esoteric and occult and went on to study with Aleister Crowley and leading Druid at the time, Ross Nichols.

In the 1950s Gardner put all these pieces together into Wicca. Wicca is clearly and obviously a amalgamation of these sources: a huge hunk from the Rosicrucian group (including most of the initiation rituals of Wicca) and its splinter Coven, sex magic techniques and rituals from Crowley and ideas on duotheism and fertility religion from Ross Nichol’s Druid Circle of the Universal Bond. There is an additional last source, an English youth movement called Woodcraft He then did WHAT THEY ALLLLLLLLLLLL DO, which is slap a backstory on it claiming it’s linked to all thing ancient, in this case the old pagan fertility cults from Neolithic times.

He claimed the New Coven was in fact an unbroken pagan link, and this may have indeed been the New Coven’s own self purported backstory. It as not however true. This idea of witch cults tied to ancient pagan fertility cults is known as the Witch-cult theory and traces to a writer name Magaret Murray, who became close friends with Gardner and a supporter of Wicca. However, before this she had published two books which claimed the existance of an unborken witch cult which had survived since ancient times and which all witch trials in Europe had hoped to finally extinguish.

Sadly, Murray’s Witch cult argument has been demonstrated as false and poor and intentionally misleading scholarship, both by her peers and later folklorists, witch trial experts and historical researchers. Murray dismissed all criticism as being the Christian world out to shut her up, although most of the researchers and experts, especially the ones who came after her were nothing of the sort, but her work achieved a degree of popularity. Groups suddenly appeared who wished to resurrect the Witch-Cult as described in Murray’s works, and this would include the New Coven Rosicrucian splinter group.

What had started as a Rosicrucian group splintered into a slightly more folksy Coven attempting to model itself on Murray’s work. This inspired Gardner immensely. He in turn combined it with a rich tapestry pulled from the other sources i’ve named, launched a magnificently brilliant publicity campaign, and created a brand spanking new religion founded on esoteric principles, Wicca. Wicca, in case you haven’t been paying attention, is flourishing today and offers some of the most interesting new forms of spirituality and esotericism of the modern day. (Yes, yes, really contains secret ancient lore, blah blah blah. No religion is historically accurate. None. I don’t hold it against them. Everyone backstories. The Jews for heaven’s sake backstoried the entire Egyptian slavery thing and Moses, although this is probably not the place to start in on that stuff.)

Anyway, that’s it, folks. We have concluded our excursion into the Land of Rosicrucians. I hope it’s been entertaining. I hope some of you are still reading this after today’s lengthy post. I hope all the roses on all your metaphorical crosses bloom brightly. See you tomorrow with Gd knows what.


Posted by on July 10, 2012 in Uncategorized


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The Rosicrucians Pt. 2

So, to recap, from 1614 to 1616 three tracts were published in Germany claiming to be from an underground Order of highly knowledgable wise guys possessing all sorts of esoteric secrets of the universe. It was actually a small group of students from Tubingen University pulling a scholarly prank of sorts.

For several years Europeans interested in esotericism went nuts, and in the post Reformation there were more and more each year. The search to find the Rosicrucians was on. Books on Rosicrucian teachings were put out, in  most cases by people who admitted up front they were not Rosicrucians themselves but were versed in the studies the tracts alluded to, such as spiritual alchemy, Cabala, Christian mysticism, and Hermetism. Descartes was accused of being a Rosicrucian as was Frederick V, Prince Palatine of the Rhine and leader of the Protestant Union who took the throne of Holy Roman Emperor in 1619. Frederick V’s suspected Rosicrucian connections and/or involvement didn’t help him however, as the Catholic forces led by the Spanish (or course) kicked Frederick’s poor butt from here to Holland. Frederick fled after having been King for only a year. For the record, it was this very occurrence that set off the never ending fun that was the 30 years war.

With the 30 Years War underway the Rosicrucian hype slowly dissolved. A number of books continued to be published, but in general the fervor died down. For one thing, there was that nasty religious war. For another, before this point, Christian occultism was not always considered a bad thing. The Catholics objected to anything that broke Catholic dogma, but Christian mysticism was accepted as normal if not accurate and the idea of the Renaissance magus was a positive one. As Calvinism grew, attitudes about this changed to the disapproving. Lastly the scientific revolution had truly begun. Ironically, some original members of the British Royal Society were inspired by the Rosicrucians and wished to start their own group to uncover the secrets of the universe. As The Royal Society and Newton and Leibniz actually DID uncover secrets of the universe, the scientific method was in and esotericism lost some of its allure.

And thus a hundred years passed.

Dateline: 1740s/50s. The Thirty Years War is long over and an exhausted Europe has decided fighting over religion just isn’t worth it. The Rosicrucians are a blip on esoteric history. So why do we still know them now? Ah, come my friend, appearing now on history’s stage is the legendary group responsible for inventing more of the fanciful alternate history malarky that is still tossed around today than any other. They brought us the Knights Templas conspiracy bullshit, Egyptian magic, Atlantian secrets, secrets actually from every single ancient point in history real or imagined. Yes, it’s the one, the only, The Freemasons!

I’ve written about Freesmasonry and the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite at legnth, but here’s the fast version of why we care about it at this moment:

Freemasonry uses a system of symbolic morality. The learning and contemplation of this system is a big reason Freemasonry was so popular. Once however you’ve done the whole Hiram story which is the original 3 degrees, you may want to do some more, since it’s so fun and cool. So a huge demand for more degrees and rites was born.

Thus it was that in lodges across Europe and America new degrees and systems were invented, with new morality stories and symbols and new initiations. Thousands. Literally. However, it loses a lot of luster in getting to be initiated into a nifty new system of degrees when told that actually, Chauncy just spent the last few months banging this out in his drawing room. No, what sold was this is SECRET ANCIENT LORE JUST UNCOVERED FROM EGYPT/THE ORIENT/THE SUFIS/ATLANTIS/THE ROSICRUCIANS/ETC/etc/etc.

See the connection? So, way back in the early days of Freemasonry, around the 1740s, a new system of degrees was developed by Jacobite Freemasons, one of the first new systems mind you. The Jacobites were Catholic and wanted to restore the Catholic Stuarts to the British throne. They were looking to create an alternate form of Freemasonry to compete with the dominant Protestant one. They came up with the Scottish Rite system and in order to give it a good backstory they dug out the Rosicrucians and claimed it came from them. The fact that the original Rosicrucian tracts had been anti-Catholic makes for a rather good irony.

And thus the Rosicrucians were revived. In Germany a number of Freemasons wanted to be more involved in esoteric, occult stuff which Freemasonry wasn’t going far enough towards for their tastes. So in the 1750s they founded the Order of the Golden and Rosy Cross, and peppered it with as much Rosicrucian lore as they could dig up.

Just to point out, they backstoried their Rosicrucian order to Egypt, claiming a great Egyptian mage in 96AD converted to Christianity and passed along his great wisdom until it reached, once again, the fucking Knights Templar in 1188 (ALWAYS with the gawdammed Knights Templar!)

This did it. Rosicrucian symbols and forms of mysticism were developed and expanded. The Golden Order of the Rosy Cross only lasted until the early 1800s, but by then Rosicrucianism had spread and was popular. In the mid 1800s Rosicrucian groups started popping up in force. They enjoyed a full flowering and led directly to…. anyone?….. Buehler?…… yes, Wicca! I shit you not. Join us tomorrow and i’ll not only keep driveling on but explain the very direct connection.

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Posted by on July 9, 2012 in Uncategorized


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The Rosicrucians Pt. 1

In discussing colorful forms of spiritualism in the Victorian era, we would be quite remiss is we ignored the group that started it all, that brought medieval hermeticism, western esotericism and occultism into the Renaissance and paved the way for much Freemason thought, the Golden Dawn, Theosophy and all that came after it including Wicca and all things New Agey.

The impact of the Rosicrucians is undeniable. As the Reformation cleared European thought from centuries of rigidly dogmatic Cathloic dogma and new forms, offshoots and sects of Christianty popped up like flies ta a barbeque, many new free thinkers were willing and ready to explore what were, truthfully, long traditions who had carefully hidden themselves, such as Cabbalists, Alchemists, Astrologers and Occultists practicing magic. These were all schools of thought and exploration that had been hanging around in the shadows of medieval society, but after the Reformation were being more readily searched out and brought to attention by notable people such as John Dee, Queen Elizabeth’s consultant.

The original Rosicrucian Order who truly brought all this stuff into vogue and into the modern world had so much impact and yet is so shrouded in secrecy so little can be said about them. There is, i assure you, a perfectly excellent reason for this. They sort of didn’t exist.

Beginning in 1614 three tracts appeared. one a year for 3 years. The first one was Universal and General Reformation of the Whole Wide World; together with the Fama Fraternitatis of the Laudable Order of the Rosy Cross, written to all the Learned and Rulers of Europe; also a short reply sent by Herr Haselmayer, for which he was seized by Jesuits and condemned to a galley; now put into print and communicated to all true hearts.

Yes, that’s the title. Folks, in the days before TV and computers people had a lot of time to read. And you can’t even be bothered to spell out Oh My Gd. (Nor i to spell check. Usually i finish a post and literally run off. Like today. I can only shudder when i think of how many spelling and grammar errors you will have to trudge through. I feel your pain. I do. Not enough to proofread right this moment, but i feel it deep in here. Right here. Thump.)

This tract was actually three parts. In part one it reprinted a pirated German translation of a work by Italian author Traiano Boccalini. The work is a a satire in which the god Apollo calls together a gathering of wise men to fix the world. Proposal after proposal is suggested most ludicrous. By the end the finale decree is to pass a law regulating market vegetables whereupon everyone disbands and return home jubilant and triumphant.

So there’s that. The next part, the Famas Fraternitatis gets down to business and proclaims the existance of a secrte society which has been gaurding hidden wisdom for some about 200 years. The Order was founded by a monk of noble birth (gotta have the noble birth in there. Monk cause he’s humble and learned but noble because… the credibiility of having a good bloodline cannot be overstated. But i digress) who is called only C.R.C. This CRC travlled to the exotic Middle East and learnt the magical secrets of the universe. But upon returning to Europe he found his learning rejected by men and threatening to the Church. So he founded a small, secret Fraternity who passed on this knowledge from his death in 1484 until now, 1614 when the post Reformation world was finally ready for it.

In fact it said, in 1604 the current members had rediscovered the vault where CRC had been buried an uncovered wonders beyond imagination. The Fraternity called upon all who were truly interested and ready to contact them.

The third section is a letter by an Adam Hasselmayer attempting to contact them. he calls them undceiving Jesuits (as opposed to the implied deceiving ones currently operating as Jesuits). He is caught by said Jesuits and made into a galley slave for 5 years as punishment.

What’s interesting is that the third part is real. There really was an Adam Hasselmayer and he got a copy of the Rosicrucian manuscript in 1611, two printings before the 1614 one which became famous. He really did write a letter trying to reach the Brotherhood and the Jesuits really did make his poor ass into a galley slave for 5 years. DAMN what dicks.

The next year another tract was published. This time it discussed in length a very baffling work by the affore mentioned John Dee, Monas Hieroglyphica an almost impenetrable essay on Occultism. They continued to call out the Catholic Church, farting in their general direction.

Finally in 1616 the big finale came: The Chemical Wedding of Christian Roenkreutz in the year 1549. This is the work they’re remembered for. It’s a deep allegorical story full of symbolism, in particular alchemical symbolism and not turn base metal into gold Alchemy but spiritual alchemy, whereby a man can achieve profound mystical states.

The Chemical Wedding of Christian Roenkreutz in the year 1549 cemented the Rosicrucians into rock stars. All across Europe interested parties began to search and write and attempt contact with this mysterious Order who left no real forwarding address, just a claim that the ones who tried and were truly ready to find them would. The Jesuits went into overdrive.

But, you ask, who WERE these masked men?

A small group of college students who around 1605 had written and assembled the material that was the 3 tracts, partly as scholarly prank and partly because, admiring John Dee immensely, alchemy, esotericism and occultism was a hobby of passion for them. They invented the Order, and created the manuscripts which were handed around a bit before someone finally took them to a willing printer and had them printed. One of them  was Johann Valentine Andrade from Wurttemburg, who would go on to become a Lutheran minister and who later sheepishly waved the whole thing away, saying it was “a fiction, a jest, of little worth.” and blaming youthful folly. Also in the student circle were Tobias Hest and Christoph Besold.

It became the most impacting and influential college prank the world had ever seen. More tomorrow.

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Posted by on July 7, 2012 in Uncategorized


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Dieselpunk Tarot

There are a couple of steampunk tarot decks (or designs) but Dieselpunk Tarot has been hard to track down. However, i have done it. There is a very dark, but definitely Dieselpunk Tarot deck designed around an occult WWII setting.

The Fool

The Magician

The Empress

The Emperor

The Chariot

If you’re wondering why the hell anyone would design such a thing as this (other than, you know, it’s fracking cool as frack) there’s a game called Sine Requie Anno XIII. Sine Requie Anno XIII is a role playing game that takes place in an alternate post WWII dystopia where nazis and the living dead are rampaging the world.

The game is produced by an Italian company Dreampainters. It was begun in 2003 but the current version is from 2008. The game has won several awards but what makes it even MORE interesting is instead of using dice to execute actions, it uses tarot cards. Hence this deck.

However, the deck, available as either a 22 set Major Arcana or the full 78 set, is an fully functional tarot deck on its own right. It’s actually quite sought out by certain tarot collectors.

I’ve talked about my thoughts on tarot, which are basically i love the tarot system, but not for the reasons most other people. I don’t care about the whole divination thing so much, i’m more fascinated by the use of archetypal imagery to suggest stories and relationships to the mind. In other words, forget the psychic stuff, i love the creative Jungian story maps.

But enough chatter. More pics:


The Hanged Man


The Devil

The Moon

Here’s some info on the game:


The game is set in an alternative 1957, 13 years after what is remembered as “The Judgment Day”: the 6th of June 1944 (also known, in the real world, as D-Day), the day in which human history changed forever.

While WWII was raging, the Dead rose from their graves to devour the living and to wreak havoc on them. Many nations did not have the strength to counteract the violence and crumbled before the insane hunger of those that were once living beings. Only a few survivors lasted in those wastelands, where “life” had changed her name to “nightmare”.

Lost Lands

The Lost Lands are by now rotten deserts where gaunt bunches of men and women, either bold or on the brink of madness, live from day to day. It is a place where finding water or provisions can costs one’s life, and the ground is scratched by the crawling steps of hordes of undead and other dreadful creatures. Some nations with strong leaders were able to hold out, establishing totalitarian regimes.

Third Reich

The Third Reich, claiming victory in WWII, took the name of IV Reich (The Fourth Reich). In these territories, ruled by the Nazi regime, life is regulated by rigid and cruel laws, and personal liberty is only a dream. The cities, surrounded by fortified walls, are the same as they were ten years before, and nothing appears to be different. People live unaware of the horror that crawls outside the cities borders. Gestapo soldiers patrol the streets to maintain public order, instilling an atmosphere of terror and suffering. Ferocious SS Platoons deport more and more citizens to the Reeducation Camps, from where nobody ever returns. In the name of a new religion risen from the ashes of Christianity, churches are desecrated and converted to shrines of the new Führer-Messiah who will once again lead the Reich to global conquest.

Sanctum Imperium

In Italy, after the fall of the fascist regime, a rigid theocracy was imposed, ruled by Pope Leone XIV. This new state has returned Italy to the medieval period. Most modern technology has been abolished or is only in the hands of a privileged few. the Italian territories appear to be anachronistic places, where old cars stand beside pyres of a new inquisition. Templars in shining armour fight alongside Hunters of the undead, veterans of the world war, to defend the population. In the Papal State, the fervent religious fanaticism has brought a ferocious fight to heresies and to all that is “anti-papal”.


The Russian civilization survived the horror but at the cost of extreme changes. Giant metal cities, immense mazes of towers and corridors extend from the depth of the earth to the sky, while, from the untiring factories, the first bio-machines were born, the monstrous forefront of a new humanity.

This is the realm of Z.A.R., an inhuman dictator of a technocracy that had decreed the end of concepts like family, religion, peace and rest. Not even sunlight is granted to the slave citizens of the Calculator, and the days have lost their value and changed their length to submit to the rigid and precise rhythms of the bio-machine factories.

 Here’s a link to Asterion Press and the full game.
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Posted by on June 27, 2012 in Uncategorized


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Freemasonry Pt. 4: Masonic Temples

We shall end our little 4 part series of Freemasonry with some pictures of Masonic temples.

During the 1700s as Freemasonry became a new type of social club centered around symbolic spiritual morality with less and less ties to its past as a medieval guild, Freemasons would gather in taverns, homes or public halls. As the years went by and their meetings became more and more elaborate, requiring greater and greater set up and tear down time, it began to look like good idea to build a dedicated meeting hall.

Considering also that the Craft centers around an obsession with architecture and its tools i would also assume this was inevitable.

Building a building takes a lot of money of course, but by the later 1700s Freemasonry was seeing more and more higher class members and in 1765 the very first Masonic Temple was built in Marseille, France. In 1777 the  first temple was built in London: Freemason’s Hall. With this, the Temple room in which Masonic rituals take place and called such after the Temple of Solomon around which all Freemason lore centers, became not just a symbolic place where Masons met, but a literal, physical one.

Freemason’s Hall, London

During the 1800s the trend continued. Often a group of Lodges would all pitch in to build or buy a building together and in other smaller ares where money was more of an issue Masons would buy old churches, schools or even homes of community founders, which they would then convert into lodge meeting spaces.

Despite the different buildings and scales of finance, the actual temple room remains rather consistant, however, as you can see for yourself from the following examples.

I would point out that most temple rooms these days are smaller and much lass ornate, as Freemasonry struggles. It still has many, many members and Lodges worldwide, but the days when men would go to weekly lodge meetings of whatever social club they were part of are decades past.

Old sit coms and even cartoons treat lodge membership matter of factly as a normal part of a man’s life. The Honeymooners, Happy Days, the Flintstones, the Andy Griffith Show all come from a time or portray a time when social club were normal. After the 1950s however, this has died out rapidly, although from the 18th to the first half of the 20th century social clubs were practically a universal passtime among males. Furthermore from the 1800s on, most social clubs were modeled to some degree or another after Freemasonry, which was the towering giant of the social club landscape for practically 200 years, although few other social clubs were as serious or in depth.

And with this ends our forray into Freemasonry. There are scads of interesting stories and yes, some real conspiracy doozies, although i must stress most outlandish tales are pure hystericism by groups hostile and paranoid towards Masonry (evangelicals for instance). I would rather tell interesting tales as one off blog pieces in the future rather than extend this series beyond 4 Parts.

See ya tomorrow…

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Posted by on May 14, 2012 in Uncategorized


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Freemasonry Pt 2: A Game of Thrones

During the 18th, 19th and early 20th century Freemasonry grew to enormous proportions. Groups of lodges operated under various Grand Lodges, but each Grand Lodge was more or less independent from one another.

Thus, many different types of degrees, rites, back stories and systems of mythology and theology sprang up across Europe and the US, and yet few, often times none of these were indicative of general Freemasonry.

In the same manner, while politics has long been forbidden in a lodge, groups of freemasons, linked closely in comradeship, might have similar political beliefs and with back room deals and handshakes attempted at times to pull off some shady shenanigans. So within the history of Freemasonry, there have been little plots here and there, but they too are independent of general Freemasonry.

You can’t have an organization of that size, especially a boys club that revels in secret handshakes and “ancient knowledge” without some of those boys trying to pull off some tomfoolery.

Talk of great, grand secret plots to rule Europe, the world, act as an arm for the One World Government, Zog, the Illuminati, etc, ect is pure poppycock and rubbish. Don’t be a douche.

But… there have been some boys who have tried all sorts of mischief and plenty of intrigue stories to go around.

We shall tell of the very first intersection of Freemasonry and politics. Back in the beginning of modern Freemasonry (meaning 1700s). The first political forays and probably good reason why politics became forbidden to talk about in Lodges.

Come back with me to the 1700s, the place, Westeros, where the Lannisters and the Starks… hang on… fact checker… ah, excuse me. 1700s, the place, England! Where the Hanovers and the Jacobites square off in a game of thrones.

For many years, the Stuarts ruled Britain. King Henry the 7th, the 8th, Mary Queen of Scots, Elizabeth, all of these were Stuarts. Okay, so by the late 1600s Protestants and Catholics are still making snarly faces at each other. England is officially Anglican, not Catholic, but tensions still run high. James the II comes on the throne. He is Catholic and pro-French and drives the Protestants into fits of anger.

Interestingly one thing James also stood for which proved very unpopular was religious tolerance. He urged the country to adopt a tolerant view towards the different form of Christianity that were now all across Britian. (Not to Jews of course who as we all know are somewhere between filthy dogs and filthy rats). Tolerance was not popular.

His Divine Right Of Kings idea was not popular and with that went not liking Parliament having any power. Not popular with a very Protestant Parliament. Finally, when James bore a Catholic heir, a son, that was that. In 1688 a group of leading nobles called on James’ PROTESTANT son in law and nephew Willaim of Orange to come invade England and kick James’ ass out.

William of Orange comes to kick some ass

William did. And thus ended the reign of the Stuarts and began the reign of the Hanovers, which went up to Victoria.

The Jacobites were those who wanted the return of James.

In 1689 they organized a rebellion and James himself landed in Ireland to reclaim the throne. Sadly for him he got his ass handed to him in 1690 at the Battle of Boyne.

Now for Freemasonry. So… most of the original Freemasons slowly being let into the Craft despite not being actual working Masons were Hanover supports. Pro-protestant, pro-William, anti-French.

However, as the 1700s came round more and more Jacobites were becoming Freemasons. In 1715 James’ SON, James III landed in Scotland to retake the throne backed by a long, carefully planned Jacobite series of plots.

James III

He ALSO got his ass handed to him and many, many Jacobites were exiled to France.

In 1717  a group of Freemasons from different lodges, all Hanover supporters, got together and formed a Grand Lodge and established Freemasonry as firmly Pro-Hanover. Part of their aim was to deny any Jacobites a potential network for subversion.

But a whole bunch of exiled Jacobites had been Freemasons themselves and established Freemasonry in FRANCE. Pro-Jacobite Lodges.

However, Hanoverian England was quite popular with France, and so England sent over charters for OFFICIAL Grand Lodge backed lodges in Paris that would be part of mainstream Freemasonry (and pro-Hanover).

The Jacobites and Hanovers fought a 20 year covert struggle within French Masonry. The English Embassador himself played a key part.

Eventually the Jacobites lost. However, they were not out of the game. They gave some big fuck you blows back.

They enlisted Cardinal Fleury who was ALSO head to police to stamp out Freemasonry. Thus Freemasonry was put under sanctions and meetings broken up by baton happy police. However, there were by now a lot of high ranked French Freemasons, and the Cardinal could only go so far before he’d get his ass handed to him by politics superiors.

Like this but with wigs and sashy coats and… you know. 1700 apparel. Okay, like this but not.

So the Cardinal went to the Pope. And the Pope issued a bull edict condemning Freemasonry and excommunicating all Catholic Freemasons from that point on.

Thus began the long, long squaring off between Catholicism and Freemasonry. We shall talk of this further tomorrow with the ABSOLUTELY AWESOME story of the Palladium Affair.

One last thing though: the jacobites, as part of their cold war against Hanoverian Freemasonry, began coming with the own system of rites and degrees. By the 1740s it was fully formed and called Scottish Masonry. It was a longer, more comprehensive system.

This new system rose in popularity, was backed by Jacobites and promised to garner a new wave of alternate Freemasons. However, in 1745 James II’s GRANDSON, Charles (Bonnie Prince Charlie) ALSO tried to take the throne. He landed in Scotland, rallied the Scots and the English Jacobites, took Edinburgh and marched into England.

At the Battle of Culloden the Duke of Cumberland utterly buggered him. Utterly. Bonnie Prince Charlie was so soundly defeated that any hope of future uprisings were laid to rest.

The Battle Of Culloden

The Jacobites little by little simply ceased to be. They dwindled into irrelevancy.

HowEVER, their Scottish Rite system popped up years later as the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite. 100 years later it  became the most popular series of rites and degrees in Freemasonry.

What happened is the Jacobite rites sort of shmucked around in some lodges here and there until the 1850s, when Albert Pike found them and reworked them brilliantly into an astonishing powerful system of Masonic rites. It is from the Scottish rites that we have Masons that instead of having 3 degrees, as is proper, have instead 33 degrees, which became widespread.


I’m done for today, kids. Tune in tomorrow for Freemasonry Pt. 3: The Palladium Affair. It’s my favorite.

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Posted by on May 11, 2012 in Uncategorized


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