Secret societies have existed since the dawn of time, and are often associated with shadowy cabals plotting conspiracies and practicing satanic rituals. Others simply see them as innocent clubs where members can take some time out away from prying eyes and pursue mutual interests. These are my choices for 5 sinister secret societies from all over the world.
5. Skull and Bones
Founded in 1832, Skull and Bones is a secret society for undergraduates at Yale University. It’s members are known as “bonesmen”, and their meeting hall is called “The Tomb”. Each Year fifteen juniors are inducted into the society by seniors, and it is rumoured that upon joining they are given $15,000 and a grandfather clock.
Little is known about what goes on at meetings in the “The Tomb”, however its ceremonies are said to be occult in nature, and highly ritualised. Rumoured rituals include members laying in a coffin and sharing their sexual history. The rituals are designed to build life long bonds of loyalty amongst the bonesmen, however many believe that they are satanic.
The goal of the society is believed to be building the future successes of it’s members, and in that aim, skull and bones has been very successful. It is closely linked to the powerful elite of america, and has many famous and influential members, including both of the Bush Presidents.
The secret society is said to train its members in the art of acquiring power, and using that power from the shadows. The reach of bonesmen spreads into all areas of society, including government, banking, business, and the CIA. Because of the powerful positions held by its former members, the skull and bones society is often seen as part of global conspiracies, particularly those related to the establishment of a new world order.
4. Ordo Templis Orientis
Meaning “order of the temple of the East” this secret society was founded at the turn of the 20th century, and led by Aleister Crowley, who was given the title of “great beast” and its membership is based upon a series of levels or “degrees of initiation” similar to freemasonry. Crowley was a well known occultist, and also had links to another secret society called the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn.
It’s central tenet is “Do what thou wilt” and the rituals practised by this society have garnered much suspicion from outsiders, as they are often occult in appearance, using virgin priestesses, children, and invoking the power of ancient Egyptian Gods as well as the devil. The group have also been linked with bizarre sexual ceremonies, which are only open to high ranking members, and are said to bestow sexual magic upon those who take part in them.
Very little else about what goes on behind closed doors is unknown, and members rarely publicise their connections to the order. Like many secret societies, those on the outside view the order with suspicion, and questions what the goals and motives of its members are.
3. Hermetic Order of The Golden Dawn
Also known as just “The Golden Dawn” this secret society is devoted to the study and practice of the occult and paranormal. Like the freemasons, the order is based on hierarchy and degrees of initiation, and it is believed to be the main inspiration for many modern occult groups, particularly Wicca. Alleged members have included the author of Sherlock Holmes, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, as well as the author of Dracula, Bram Stoker.
The order was founded in the late 19th century by William Woodman, William Westcott, and Samuel Mathers, who were also freemasons. The belief in magic and ritual are core to the order, and their teachings included tarot, astrology, astral travel, and alchemy.
Like many other similar secret societies and orders, the golden dawn were strongly influenced by ancient Egyptian religion, and due to their secretive nature and belief in the occult, have often been accused of being satanic.
After an internal split caused by the rise of Aleister Crowley, who would go on to be a central figure in the Ordo Templis Orientis, the golden dawn is thought to have withered, with no temples surviving past the 1970’s, however there are rumours that the golden dawn simply went underground and are still very much alive. There are also at least 4 splinters of the original golden dawn order who have set up their own temples and organizations.
2. Bohemian Grove
The bohemian grove is a 2700 acre area of ground located in California belonging to a mens art club known as the Bohemian Club. In July every year, the Bohemian grove hosts a 2 week long gathering of some of the most powerful and influential men in the world – all behind closed doors and away from prying eyes.
Because of the secretive nature of these annual gatherings, and the attendance of such prominent men, many people believe that the gathering is a planning centre for global conspiracies, and a meeting ground of the new world order.
The Club motto is “Weaving Spiders Come Not Here”, which implies that networking and business discussions should be off limits, however its not hard to imagine that with such a large gathering of powerful and well connected men, important business and political deals are made. The grove famously held a meeting in September 1942 during which the Manhattan project was planned, which eventually led to the construction of the worlds first atomic bomb.
The bohemian groves mascot is an owl, which symbolises knowledge, and there is a large statue of St John at the grove, with his index finger over his lips, which symbolises the secrecy of the organisation.
There have been several infiltrations of the groves annual gathering, and bizarre occult rituals combined with heavy drinking were witnessed by those who managed to break through the tight security barrier, however hard facts on what is actually discussed at the grove are few and far between.
1. The Bilderberg Group
Also known as the Bilderberg club, the Bilderberg group is an annual private conference consisting of the elite from politics, business, finance, the media, and science. The first meeting was held in may 1954 at the Bilderberg hotel in the Netherlands, and its goal was to promote Atlanticism – which is the cooperation and better understanding between North America and Western Europe.
Since those early days, the meeting has been held in various countries, and its ambitions have grown. Denis Healey, a Bilderberg group founder, is on the record as saying the following: “To say we were striving for a one-world government is exaggerated, but not wholly unfair. Those of us in Bilderberg felt we couldn’t go on forever fighting one another for nothing and killing people and rendering millions homeless. So we felt that a single community throughout the world would be a good thing.”
Such a secretive gathering of powerful individuals from around the world, combined with statements such as these, have convinced many people that that the meeting is a planning centre for conspiracies, with the eventual goal of a one world government. At each annual meeting, a large gathering of protestors can be found at the entrance, with many feeling that their politicians and representatives should not be meeting in secret with powerful individuals from all areas of society.
So thats my choice for 5 sinister secret societies. What do you think? Are they just harmless gatherings of like minded people, or shadowy groups plotting conspiracies and planning world domination? Let me know in the comments below!