Some pages from my book Bleeding Angels – The Esoteric Traditions of Europe translated by Yannis Assimakopoulo

The night of January 6, 1721, must have been cold and foggy, nothing particularly unusual for London in the winter. What seemed unprecedented to the inhabitants of the British isle was that, after many years, Christmas season had gone by uneventfully. The battle of Glenshiel the previous year had conclusively put an end to the second uprising attempt of the Jacobites and those of the remaining followers of Jacob Stewart who had not already fled the country to France, or by cheer chance had not added their heads to the executioner’s collection, were found in some royal dungeon. George I was now the indisputable king and the Hanover dynasty established by his enthronement would keep the Crown of Great Britain for the next two centuries.

This particular night, Dr William Stukeley notes in his diary that he arrived in the Salutation Tavern in order to be initiated into Freemasonry, “I was determined to be initiated in the mysteries of Freemasonry” writes further down “having the suspicion that [Freemasonry] was the inheritor of the ancient mysteries”. Stukeley was aware that this ceremony was of a particular importance to everyone. As he notes in his diary, this would be the first initiation of a Mason in London after many, many years. Nevertheless, those present were but few, only as many as were necessary to dully and respectably carry out the ceremony ‘I was the first one in many years to become a Mason. Finding adequate members to carry out the ceremony had been extremely difficult”.

Dr. Stukeley was a medical doctor, archeologist, writer and vicar of the Anglican Church, member of the Royal Society and secretary of the literary Brasenose Society. Coffee and chocolate arriving from the new lands contributed to the opening of the first cafes which rapidly became popular meeting places. In front of a steaming cup and surrounded by the sweet aroma of tobacco, the senses loosened up and one could listen to stories and news from the travelers, exchange experiences and get inspired. Stukeley often shared tables with Isaac Newton and Robert Hook together with writers, such as Daniel Defoe and Jonathan Swift, and renowned ‘pirates’, such as Woods Rodgers who later became the governor of Bahamas, and the cartographer and explorer William Dampier.

‘Pirates’ were called reprovingly by the Spaniards who regularly faced with them wherever the interests of the British Crown were at stake. But for the British they were daring heroes bearing the black banner with the scull and crossbones –the very symbol found in Freemasonry and the Templar Masonry– striking terror into their enemies. The seafaring stories about the bloodthirsty pirates were adopted and overblown by the British to terrorize even more their adversaries and attain what they claimed, i.e. more commercial sea routes for their country. Thus, in a paradox concord, the two adversaries created a legend surpassing reality by far. Viewing the narrations of their friends from a totally different standpoint, the ‘bloodthirsty pirates’, Dafoe was inspired to write Robinson Crusoe and Swift the stories of Gulliver. Where is the truth and where the legend begins? Time, tendentiousness and fantasy alter the original stories to such extend that finally only but few common facts with the lives of their heroes remained […]

THE MYSTERIES RESTORED pages 48-50

The legend of Dionysus’ return is peculiar. An awesome god comes from afar, endears himself to the people with amazing ability and very soon climbs to the top of Olympus – awesome god in the ceremonies of initiation, but finally very clement to mankind, as Greeks were saying.

These are satisfactorily explained only if seen as a sum of instructive legends aiming to restore a unity. Herodotus, as well as Diodorus, inform us that after the Dorian invasion the ancient cult was lost and only the mysteries remained. The Greek city-states enforced their domination, a domination of the royal houses and the aristocracy of few assisted by the religion of the Olympians. Dionysus’ worship was maintained only in certain centers, such as Thebes, and combined with the worship of his mother, Semeli, in Thrace, in Agrionia of Orchomenos and in the Secret Nuptials during the Anthesteria in Athens. But at the same period and independently of what was happening in the cities, in the rural areas the epochal drama is performed unfailingly by theatrical groups from the agrarian people.

The authoritarian ruling of the royal house could not last forever. The bourgeoisie, which constituted the new power in the rich city-state, had no reason to indulge tyranny. The traders and the seafarers, by their consecutive voyages and continuous efforts to expand their horizons through the trading posts and colonies they had established, were the most ancient dispensers, recipients and transporters of civilization. The propagation and the very structure of the Greek civilization relied upon them. Along with the riches brought back home, they bring news, ideas and innovations from the lands beyond the sea. They comprehend then that the cult of the dying god of Egypt, Syria, Asia Minor and Palestine is the worship of a god who does not distinct aristocrats from the lower class, but equally allots his divinity. He is the same god with the one they still worship in the fields of their country. Thus then, this Isodetis Dionysus who ensures equality to the theatrical brothers and has survived through the theatrical mysteries and epochal ceremonies, reappears integrating all rural worships and becomes the axis of a class unity. As Lord, Savior and Liberator returns and is reinstated in the Greek cities at the moment the bourgeoisie of the time, the traders and seafarers unite with the farmers and confront the aristocracy. In that period, 7th century B.C., we begin to have again evidence of Dionysus after an absence of many years.

Peisistratos, after abolishing the tyranny of the aristocrats, allows the reiteration of the Lesser Dionysian mysteries in the countryside of Attica and organizes for the first time the Greater Dionysian in Athens. These mysteries, abolished by his predecessors, had survived secretly for many years. Peisistratos granted permission to create a Dionysus sacerdotal group of fifty men purporting god’s acolytes, the Satyrs, who constituted the first theatrical chorus. They were dancing around the altar, crowned with ivy, wearing skins and bearing corns and long tails, chanting the dithyramb. Because of their appearance, they were also called ‘tragus’ (goats), from where the word ‘tragedy’ derived.

From the theatrical Divine Drama, by the continuous repetition of the ritual, the theatre and tragedy will be born. The troupe, originally denoting the initiatory team, came to designate the theatrical troupe […]

HIRAM, THE INITIATORY HERO OF MASONS pages 60-2

Apollo of Rhodes # Argonautical I’, 91#

The dominant figure in the Masonic mythology is a Phoenician architect named Hiram. He is the central person of the most significant initiation of that system, which creates a real Master Mason, as is called. Throughout its duration, the glory and passion of the biblical architect of ing’s Solomon Temple, also called the ‘widow’s son’, are recited. The said initiation is a theatrical act peaked by Hiram’s ritualistic assassination. The massacred master has been the most prominent architect and, at the same time, the best artificer in metals of his times. He was sent to Jerusalem by request of King Solomon to the mythical king of Tyre, also named Hiram, to accomplish the building of the Temple. He labored accurately and methodically reaching almost the completion of his majestic work. Then King Solomon requested to visit officially the site accompanying the queen of Sheba to show her the unique masterpiece built to the glory of God. Their admiration turned to fear when they found themselves and their guards surrounded by crowds of workers and people, men of every tribe and tongue. No command or power could restrain this rabble. Their number was such that their feet made the ground wobble. At that moment of trepidation, the silent architect advanced one step and making only one magic sign in the air put order to the crowd and directed them disciplined to a grandiose parade. §36

This captivating man did not succeed to see his work accomplished. He was murdered by the three villain Masons. His body would be recovered owing to the acacia, a tree said in the East to symbolize immortality and renaissance. This tree would point out the dead Master’s burial ground to the seven Masons specifically selected for this mission. As they try to raise the body, it disintegrates in their hands and the bonds will separate from the flesh that falls off. Is this the end? No, because the Master, the bracing spirit of the fraternity, cannot perish. Hiram ritually revives in the face of the neophyte. He comes out of his grave declaring that the acacia, the sacred plant of the fraternity that escorted him in the darkness, is known to him, fact which signifies that immortality was known to him, as Papus wrote in the 19th century. Acacia, the golden branch of the fraternity, denotes that the power of the Fates has been abolished. Hades has been defeated. The architect cannot perish before the building is completed.

RITUAL pages 62-63

This amazing theatrical act which has given cause for the abominable stories related to the ‘bloodthirsty’ Masonic mysteries, surely could not have been the conception of some member of the Medieval Masonic craft. Furthermore, in the first Masonic manuscripts of the 14th and 15th century, not only there is no reference made to some dying Master, but neither any story related to king’s Solomon Temple or the Palestine area. The first Master of the Masons was Euclid and his well known theorem is depicted in the jewel bore by all those who have presided over their Lodge. The building work described in the Masonic manuscripts at that time was the Tower of Babel, while the two Pillars, as we shall see further, have an entirely different origin than the Temple of Jerusalem.

Why do we maintain that neither a craftsman, nor even an intellectual at those times, could have concocted this whole Masonic initiation? It is because it contains elements decidedly originating from the ancient mysteries. Besides its contents, the symbolism, but also the very enacting and differentiation of the persons in an alternating theatrical time, manifest its origin and lead us to the assumption that it is about a theatrical act reaching to its hypothetical creator only through an older tradition.

But why we give particular importance in the theatrical enacting? It is because the symbolic death of the initiated, occurring in remembrance of the theatrical hero’s passions, as well as his resurrection, constitutes a fundamental and common element of the myth of every ancient initiatory group. The first theatrical enactment was precisely born from that myth. The secrecy and the necessary commitments undertaken by every new member under severe oaths saved only minimal original information. But the theatre, born by the innards of the arcane troupes, revealed and eternalized elements of their spirit and ritual. Brecht writes in the “Small Instrument for the Theatre” that ‘when we say that theatre originates from the devotional, we mean that it became theatre deriving from that’. As a public act, the theatre made use of symbols, times and meanings already familiar to its creators from the troupes’ ceremonies. In “Exultet”, the most dramatic Latin ecclesiastic hymn of the 9th century which is chanted until nowadays during the Easter matins, the symbol of Christ-lam, of the rending and the omophagy (eating of raw), is clearly apparent: “For today is the Easter observance where the real Lam is slaughtered and His blood sanctifies the door posts of the believer”.

In the ritual, which is at the same time reenactment of the death and resurrection of god, the cosmic and the historic times coincide. Representative and represented, persecutor and victim, son of god and god father, man-god and Creator of men, all these are forms, contrasts and states of the very same person.

This passage does not refer to an act of some initiatory fraternity. It is the unbiased conclusion of one of the greatest theatrical theorists of the 20th century, Jian Cotte, who compares Greek tragedies – and in this case “Bacches” – with various rituals of the Christian resurrection.

THE TEMPLAR DE BEAUJEU AND THE MASON ENOCH. Pages 151-154

[…] When a Freemason is invited to take the 14th Degree, i.e. the one consecrated to the Stewarts, he will necessarily go through the initiation into the secrets of the Arch of Enoch. Of course, the name of Beaujeu is not mentioned anywhere in this ritual. But the wise Enoch is mentioned, a name concealing a more ancient figure which necessarily was kept secret as times dictated. As we saw, Enoch in the story of the Two Pillars replaced Hermes, the first Herald of the Word, and Pythagoras. The Royal Arch is a concoction of that story and the legend of the knights, in which now all the previous heroes converge in the figure of Enoch.

Its hero, Enoch, who according to the Bible had known the actual Name of God, was informed for the forthcoming destruction of humankind by the Cataclysm. To save the knowledge he possessed to the avail of any survivors, he inscribed the hieroglyphics forming the Name of God on a triangular agate. For the pronunciation of the name not to perish, Enoch raised two pillars. On the one, made of marble, he engraves the manner for the correct pronunciation. On the second, made of copper, he inscribes all the sciences known at the time.

In the ancient legend of Manethon and Josephus another symbolic object is added, the triangular agate, in a form referring to the Greek letter Delta. To preserve the agate and the pillars, Enoch builds an underground temple with nine arches supported by nine arcs. Below the last one, he placed the triangular agate, the Delta, and underneath the first the two pillars. The entrance to the temple was secured by a heavy rectangular stone which had in its center a large ring, so to enable even a single man to open it when time would come. Unfortunately, after the Cataclysm everything was lost and only the copper pillar with the sciences inscribed on it was retrieved. Years later, Moses, who was fortunate to know the actual Name of God, passed it on to the first high priest, Aaron. Subsequently, he inscribed it on a golden triangle which he placed in the Arc of Covenant. Time went by and in a battle against the Assyrians, all the guards of the Arc of Covenant were killed, but no one can come near the Arc because its key is inside the mouth of a lion guarding it. The High Priest approaches fearlessly and takes the key. As said in the ritual, the Word is safeguarded in a lion’s mouth. The Philistines steal the golden triangle and the contents of the Arc of Covenant, melt down the metals and make idols with the alloy. But the secret is not irretrievably lost. When Solomon completes the building of the Temple, he attempts to recover Enoch’s agate. This sacred Delta would be found through initiatory courses beneath the ninth arch. But the real pronunciation of God’s Name remains lost.

The elements stemming from the ancient initiatory myth are obvious: the essential passage through the subterranean chamber, the underground cavern, womb of the earth, the grave preserving the ancient power and where, as alchemists maintained, regeneration emerges through decay. We will attempt to highlight the basic points of this story that differentiate it from the known myth of the Two Pillars.

To begin with, there are two distinct sacred symbols, the sacred Delta and the key. We must assume that the crystal encasement found by de Beaujeu into the past Grand Master’ grave is made of some semi-precious stone, as was accustomed for centuries, quartz or agate given the fact that those stones were called generally ‘crystals’ and since ancient times they are associated with the most sacred and arcane properties. In the Masonic version, Enoch had inscribed on a triangular crystal the actual Name of God. Later, Moses made a less precious copy out of gold, which in turn was also lost. The young knight finds the crystal, the arc of the sacred secret, in its first form, the sacred Delta. The secret is essential to him for the perpetuation of the Order. The Grand Master de Molay reveals to him the secret of the crystal associating it with John the Baptist, adored by Cathars and Masons, the harbinger of the incarnation of the Word. That is, we have revelation of the Word in one hand and disclosure of the Devine Name on the other. The correlation is obvious. In the Masonic legend, the Word will be associated with the key kept in the mouth of a lion – a flaming solar symbol. In the knightly version, the elderly Grand Master must go through fire, the inmost solar symbol, to denote the time de Beaujeu should use the keys he entrusted him with. When he descends into Tibauld de Gaudin’s grave, he will find and open yet another box containing a treasure, but not a material one, as emphasized in the legend. We may assume it to be a spiritual treasure, the wisdom which no one knew from what precedent had reached the Templars, an invaluable treasure they had to stash at any cost in a safe place and find a way to use it. The nine knights in the company of Beaujeu are compared with the nine arches supporting the building that conceals and protects the wisdom of Enoch.

Why nine and not ten? In the ancient knightly symbolic tradition, knights have always been nine in number: nine established the Order of the Temple, nine gather together in each of the different stories referring to its re-establishment, and nine were the renown ‘Chosen’ ones, the ‘Nine Worthies’. We notice them in medieval literature, in a myth-making coming once more from the greater area of Province to the other side of the Pyrenees, in Spain. They are the chosen ones who always come to the rescue of the week in peril and in the 14th century’s literature express the particular virtues of valor and chivalry. The choice of the nine literary knights seems peculiar but reveals at the same time their close relation with the inner tradition.

The nine ‘Worthies’ are Hector, Alexander the Great, Caesar, Joshua, David, Judah the Maccabaeus, Arthur, Charlemagne, Gaudefroi de Bouillon; nine, as many as the founders of the Templars, as many as the knights with who de Beaujeu undertook the task to eternalize the Order of the Poor Knights of Christ and its precious secrets. The literary nine chosen ones are ideally discerned according to our hypothesis to: three pagans (Hector, Alexander, Caesar), three biblical (Joshua, David, Judah Maccabaeus) and three heroes upoon who the legend of the Christian knight was established (Arthur, Charlemagne, Gaudefroi de Boillon); three times three, like in the ancient sacrificial mysteries.

The crystal containing the treasure is a box. In Templar tradition it contains the finger of John the Baptist, of John who harbingered the Word. The sacred cist, the box of mysteries, contained a snake, a phallus, fruits or a head – in each case revealing a secret that supported and blessed the adepts, the sacrificial brethren, Gnostics, Cathars, Templars. Three times three, exactly just like the nine Masons designated indispensable to hold convocation of the Holy Royal Arch. Three time three, and the Mason of the Holy Royal Arch solemnly swears to recognize in every man the right to worship the divine in every way he deems appropriate, to do his outmost that freedom of worship and emancipation of conscience prevail everywhere, as well as to help with all his powers the progress of mankind. For religious disputations, ignorance and fanaticism divide humans and create civil rending, like the one in the 13th century that run aground the most civilized and thriving region of Languedoc. But the spirit of the Cathars of Province was not extinct; it traveled through the epopees of the troubadours and the melodies of the minstrels in every court and every city in Europe. Middle Ages would sometime come to an end.

THE SACRED KING pages 184- 187

[…] Charlemagne and Frederick, two actual secular leaders, enclosed in their underground countries like the legendary Arthur, substitute the ancient deity of the ‘Sacred King’. Like our Homeric heroes, they enact a primordial legend that through time assimilated some historic facts and various local folk convictions. It is evident that there are many similarities among these folktales, fact that lead us to reject coincidence and assume that they arise from a common original idea. One of these similarities is the character of the protagonist of every legend and the expectations from him, which vividly remind us the legend of the ancient ‘Sacred King’.

Prometheus is the legendary hero perfectly identifying with the idea of the ‘Sacred King’. This last of the Titans, is considered to be the creator of mankind. He gave his brother Epimithes a box containing everything, the aggregate of the Word. He told him he must keep it closed. But when his feckless wife, Pandora, opened the box (of mysteries), everything scattered in the four winds. The first humans changed over at once from the state of blissfulness to absolute indigence. They were left only with an empty box – and if they could rescue something inside that box, this was only the hope, the prospect that sometime the original, the previous unity, shall be reestablished. The altruist Prometheus fought in the beginning not taking side with his compeers, the primordial Titans, but on the side of the Olympian gods. He opposed his own kind not for personal benefit, but for the new generation of gods represented by Zeus to prevail. When the Olympian order was established, Prometheus defended the rights of its new creations, the human beings.

The tragedy reaches its peak when the human race, inebriated by loftiness, shows disrespect to the gods neglecting to worship them. Then Zeus decides to punish the humans taking away from them the very base of their civilization, the fire. This punishment amounts to going back to the animal state, for the fireplace, the safety offered by the fire, is the place where the group gathers for the first time establishing the tribe and the first deity. Prometheus does not accept to be a spectator before the human damnation to eternal darkness, steals the sacred fire from Zeus temple and offers it to humans, in essence offering them the gift of life and consciously sacrificing his own.

Zeus proves to be neither a tolerant nor a grateful god; he does not pardon Prometheus for his treason. God from the height of his power decides according to his own criteria without emotional barriers. The Sacred King stands trial and is punished because he loved humans and did the duty his heart commanded. His punishment was to be banished from the sacred land and to suffer eternally chained to the rocks of a mountain. An eagle, symbol of the divine domination, shall eat every day his liver, which will be regenerated daily. Prometheus shall remain on the inaccessible rock bleeding until Doomsday.

The Sacred King does not identify with some god. Rex Mundi, the cruel and patriarchal god, enforces viciously his own unconditional discipline. The human being is prey to his desires and impulsions. The Sacred King, ancient companion of the Great Mother, the Anima Mundi, is tortured, bleeding, isolated in mystic worlds beneath mountains and inside underground caverns, identical to the ancient alters and the first mystery places of worship. In that sacred place – taboo and womb beyond space and time – he shall remain until the end of times. On Doomsday, he will face the Antichrist, the antediluvian enemy of the Holy Infant and reinstate in the world the innocence of the sixth day of creation. When the good emperor Frederick will accomplish everything an old German legend tells, after rising from his eternal sleep, he will hang his shield on the apple tree that remains barren for thousands of years, and then, at the very moment, the tree shall turn green and filled with fruits. Along with the tree, the whole earth shall be filled with fruits; there will be no longer darkness, hunger, and evil.

THE ROSICRUCIANS AND THE COSMOPOLITES pages 265-267

Rosicrucianism was the outcome of the work of a small group established among the Hermeticists of the 16th century. Intention of its members was to make widely known and put into operation, as much as feasible, ideas yet accessible only to a restricted circle of persons. They were hoping that by spreading those ideas, everyone could gain access to the benefits of science and progress and would be leaded to a new era. Their views became commonly known through the Rosicrucian manifests presented in the beginning of the 17th century. The European Rosicrucian tide was mainly developed in the German-speaking northern countries of Europe, in Bohemia and in Poland, and strengthened by the wind of change annunciated by the Reformation. The British side of the Rosicrucian movement presented its own position through the words and spirit of John Dee pervading the Rosicrucian Manifests. Dee, as all those who had a main role were found almost simultaneously at the meeting point of the esoterists of the time, in Prague.

But this meeting of philosophy, of early science and alchemy of the Hermetists with the orally conveyed ancient lore and their transition to Rosicrucianism needed something yet. The Rosicrucians, like the alchemists, claimed to possess the secret of transmutation, but did not cease to avouch in every occasion their distaste for the material gold and the accumulation of material riches. Rosicrucians also knew and practiced free of charge medicine and the preparation of medications, like the Hermetists and mainly Paracelsus who was considered one of the Rosicrucians predecessors.

Rosicrucianism as set forth in the 17th century portrayed an unprecedented organizational structure. The identity of their leader, regarded as the successor of the legendary Christian Rosy Cross (Christian Rosencreutz), was meticulously kept secret. In a movement spread all over Europe, with several versions and manifests, nobody seems to know the name of the one leading the organization. In continental Europe appeared the ‘Unknown Philosophers’ and a bit later on, mainly in England, the Ghost College. When Hermetists refer to ‘Philosophy’ they mean the entirety of sciences and mostly Mathematics which became something like religion. This perception is apparent also in Newton titling his topmost work, known as ‘The Principia’, ‘Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica’ (Mathematic Principals of Natural Philosophy).

The organizations established by the Hermetists-Rosicrusians drew round roving philosopher alchemists and their knowledge and, within a generation, by instructing younger scholar scientists, managed to set up the Royal Society as an enhancement of the ‘Ghost College’, establishing solidly the principles of modern science. In their proclamations, Rosicrucians for the first time, and probably the last, spoke out of a political stance as well: the seeker of knowledge should no longer hide nor fly to save his life. They believed the enemy was one and named him; it was the Pope and what he represented. They also believed that an anticipated leader would bring in the future the new era, they sided with him and when he was defeated, joined forces with the followers of Reformation.

It was impossible the organization to have come out only from one man of literate. Knowledge was necessary, but equally necessary – if not more important – were diplomacy, managerial experience and personal contacts with the approving kings and princes. The alleged leader of Rosicrucianism should have been capable not only to inspire the vision of the new era and the great social, religious and scientific changes, but also to travel often to European and Eastern areas found in state of war and, as well, to meet and converse with influential persons. And above all, he should possess the required prudence to remain unknown to ordinary people in order to ensure the benefit for the intentions and the organization. Then this enlightened, daring and possessing extraordinary diplomatic abilities man, who additionally should not have had the desire to gain laurels because of their activities, remained anonymous thanks to the protection of those they knew him. He was only known as ‘The Cosmopolite’, the cosmopolitan. But behind that pseudonym there were hiding at least two persons.

LAPIS ANGULARIS

(In place of an epilogue to a story that can have no end).

«Remember that you are the Salt of the Earth, the Light of the World, and the Fire of the Universe. You are living Stones; built up a Spiritual House that trusts and relies on the main Lapis Angularis, the one the refractory and disobedient Builders disallowed. You are called from Darkness to Light; you are a chosen Generation, a royal Priesthood…

Eugenius Philalethes, Long-Livers (1772, preface)

Our narrative began with an exploration of the archetypal images: the oldest sacred figure representing Nature in its purest meaning, the Great Mother; by her side her children, the epochal germinal heroes-gods who looked after the continuance and dispersion of her blessing, securing by their cyclic course and regeneration the fertility and perpetuation of the race; the initiatory heroes who instructed the world in the art of survival and progress by building cities, inventing writing, devising measures and weights, teaching the arts and sciences.

Obviously, they omitted to concern themselves with the administration of the outcome of their offer and never thought to impose it by force. That was done by the subsequent genders, with their patriarchal structure and by force of their weapons, and bequeathed that practice to the following human generations and the entire History. Every subjugator, in order to establish his power, after adopting and presenting everything accommodating as of his own, turns to demonizes and eliminates all that reminds of his defeated opponent. Even when his victory had been easy like forcing an open door, the conqueror stresses his feat and crowns himself with the fable of the invincible. But no matter what power the brutal force attains, it can never control absolutely those to which was never related; mind, intellect, curiosity, ingenuity, imagination, literature, arts. In ancient texts coming from every corner of the earth, therefore by definition not from the same source, the same essential detail is repeated: the ‘bad’ of the story is the one who built safe cities and taught arts and sciences, the ‘good’ of the story is the imposing, untaught war lord. Besides, History is written by the victors. In the course of the centuries, in every such story an oxymoron is repeated: the fallen angel of perdition, the hero who bleeds and suffers till the end of time is punished because he wanted to help the man. His crime was that he infringed the chillsome heavenly order; therefore his blood shall wet the earth of people until there is catharsis. […]

[…] We all agree that Newton was the first scientist. Nevertheless, the famous economist John Maynard Keynes who had gathered great part of Newton’s personal manuscripts, amazed by what he read in them, he said to his students in Trinity College that Newton ‘was not the first of the age of reason. He was the last of the magicians.’

What does magic means? How can one convey to his contemporaries that which does not appear to have any logical explanation? ‘Are not gross Bodies and Light convertible into one another, and may not Bodies receive much of the Activity from the Particles of Light which enter the Composition?’ These questions of Newton presented at his times an alchemic proposition. By putting them forward, Newton opened up a prospect, a possibility which no one could conceive until Einstein proved that mass and energy are two equivalent entities.

What were the real Hermetists? Most of them tried to open up new roads in thinking and develop practical applications of their discoveries affirming on every occasion their intense dislike towards the art of creating gold. The gold they were seeking was purely spiritual, but only few were willing to listen. The hermetic symbolism was used by most of the later writers to embellish their own superstitions, mainly reproducing pre-existing, entrenched and not necessarily correct ideas. For an example, the Theosophists of the 19th century included Alchemy and Hermetism among the amassed various ideas and spiritual traditions they elaborated to set forth their own dogmas. The creators of ‘Golden Dawn’ and later Alistair Crawly found in Hermetism inspiration and support for their abstract and inconsistent ‘magic’ ideas. Even Young and his followers have used alchemic symbolism including it the collection of archetypes they studied and in the theories they propounded. However, none of all these contends with the actual Alchemy, the actual Hermetism.

Let us consider for a moment how olden their ideas are nowadays. We already said that Camillo’s Theatre of Memory, seen today, would be nothing else but a very powerful computer program which could, going a little further than the usual software, function interactively evoking with every answer new stimuli which would gradually increase and improve with every new response. The ‘drawer’ system could be replaced by a series of links, familiar to novice users of internet and windows, which would lead to innumerable memory files and to a rich source of knowledge. On the 16th and 17th century, some people followed the tradition of the ancient ‘fallen’ ones and wanted to try, once again, to teach the arts and letters. The building could not have been accomplished without someone taking the place of the ‘key stone’ (lapis angularis), the one the lords of work always rejected and that rejection went along with blood. These people were not terrified by the fate of Prometheus, Seth, Cain, all those labeled in the History written by the victors as accursed and stigmatized as heretics. Some have been embraced by fire, some poisoned with disdain.

It took three centuries before we may speak with convenience about links and probably a few decades will be needed to speak with words that are not yet created. I do not consider time to be an obstacle, besides it has always been the sole ally of Mother Nature’s children. The Hermitist of Renaissance was dreaming of a new science to lead him to the discovery of the secret of Creation. Has perhaps his dream faded away with the last athanor? The new science was indeed born, maybe quite different from the one he had imagined. How may one portray a future not yet existent with bygone words and pictures from the past? Nevertheless, the dream remains alive nowadays, after three centuries of continuous quest, through different paths. Do you want an example? Take note of the boldest fantasy of every student, every professor, and every Physical Science researcher. What is that? The establishment of the Unified Fields Theory .

What are they seeking?

A mathematical equation explaining Creation; the very secret of Creation itself.

CONTENTS

PREFACE

The Widow’s Sons

* NOUMAS, FERTILITY, GOLDEN BOUGH
* THE GREAT MOTHER AND THE DIVINE INFANT
* THE TOTEM AND THE FIRST COMMUNION
* THE SEASONAL DRAMA
* THE KING’S DEATH AND THE DIVINE DRAMA
* THE DIONYSIAN MYSTERIES
* THE RETURN OF DIONYSUS
* ORPHEUS

· THE MYSTERIES RESTORED

* BACCHES

· THE RISE AND FALL

· HIRAM, MASONS’ INITIATORY HERO

* RITUAL

· GERMINAL (VEGETATIVE) HERO

* HIRAM, SOLOMON AND THE QUEEN OF SHEBA

· THE TWO PILLARS

* THE RADIANT STAR
* COPPER PILLAR OR HUMAN PRESENCE?
* WHO IS SETH?
* WHERE THERE HEBREW MYSTERIES?
* THE BANISHED HERO
* THE MARKS OF CAIN

(The) Angels of Perdition

* THE TEMPLARS
* THE ACCUSATIONS
* THE CATHARS
* MONTSEGUR
* TEMPLARS AND CATHARS
* A DEITY OF PLENTY
* FROM SAINT BERNARD TO THE ‘SECRET TEMPLE’
* MAITRE RONCELIN DE FOS
* BAPHOMET
* A HEAD, A ‘SACRED’ HEAD?
* BAPHOMET AS IN MOHAMED?
* THE SURVIVAL OF THE ORDER
* THE TEMPLAR DE BEAUJEU AND THE MASON ENOCH.
* THE LEGEND OF REINNES-LE-CHATEAU

· ARCADIA IN THE EUROPEAN TRADITION

* NOTES ON A LEGEND
* THE HANDSOME STRANGER (LE BEL INCONNU)
* FREDERICK II HOCHENSTAUFEN (1194-1250)
* THE LEGEND OF FREDERICK AND THE ARTHURIAN CIRCLE
* THE SACRED KING

The Memory

* HERMES WORD
* HOW HERCULES BECAME THE PROGENITOR OF MEDICI
* WHEN ROME DISCOVERED PLATO

· TRACES LEADING TO SCOTLAND
· KNIGHTS OF THE TEMPLE, ALIVE AND ACTIVE

* ‘TALL AND PROUD LIKE SETON’
* THE SINCLAIRS
* MAISTER WILLIAM SCHAW
* THE ART OF MEMORY
* CAMILLO’S THEATRE
* GIORDANO BRUNO (1548_ 17. 02. 1600)

· SHAW COMPLETES THE TRADITION

· THE ROSICRUCIAN MOVEMENT
· THE MARVELOUS Dr. JOHN DEE
· Sir FRANCIS BACON
· ROSICRUCIANS AND COSMOPOLITES

* THE COSMOPOLITES
* THE CONTENT OF THE MANIFESTS
* THE TOMB AND THE THEATRE
* FREDERICK V AND THE ROSICRUCIAN WINTER
* THE OTHER ROSICRUCIANS AND ‘KING’ ZIEGLER

· THE UNKNOWN PHILOSOPHERS

* THE GHOST COLLEGE AND THE ROYAL SOCIETY
* Dr. ROBERT MORAY
* MASTERS OF THE ROYAL WORKS, ROSICRUCIANS AND MASONS

LAPIS ANGULARIS

(In place of an epilogue to a story that can have no end).

CROSS REFERENCES

BIBLIOGRAPHY

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