I wasn't sure where to post this so adminstrators feel free to move this if need be.

I'm reading the book (fiction) "Angels and Demons" by Dan Brown, and the illuminati organization are a major part of this book(not wanting to give away plot details for those who may still want to read this). So having never heard of the Illuminati, I have been searching for more information, wondering what the facts are about this organization.

Does anyone know for real without a doubt if this organization still exists? I came across a lot of conspiracy theories online and of course mention of the connection to the Freemasons. Having always been curious about the Freemasons I found that connection very interesting.

It occurred to me that a maybe there is a connection between the tarot and the illuminati? Is that too far fetched?

Does anyone know anything about the illuminati?



Some of the best Illuminati information is located here.

I have verified this with other sources. The most important paragraph states, “Weishaupt was appointed a professor at the University of Ingolstadt in Germany around 1772 and elevated to the post of professor of Canon Law in 1773 or 1775 (sources conflict), the first secularist to hold that position previously held by clergy. Weishaupt began planning a group to challenge authoritarian Catholic actions in 1775, the group (under a different name) was announced on May 1, 1776. This group evolved into the Illuminati. The Enlightenment rationalist ideas of the Illuminati were, in fact, brought into Masonic lodges where they played a role in a factional fight against occultist philosophy. The Illuminati was suppressed in a series of edicts between 1784 and 1787, and Weishaupt himself was banished in 1785.”

Illuminati and Tarot? No.

Freemasonry and Tarot? Perhaps.

Cathars and Tarot? In my opinion yes.

Templars and Tarot? In my opinion yes.

Did the Templars become the Freemasons? In my opinion yes.

Did the destruction of the Cathars lead to the formation of the Templars? In my opinion yes.

Some may dispute this.


Thanks so much Umbrae. The website you listed is much more informative than the conspiracy sites I came across. I have to admit they left me feeling a bit paranoid.

In the book (fiction) that I mentioned the author has the Illuminati beginning with Galileo and his peers (other scientists or enlightened ones that the church felt threatened by in the 1500's)

So it seems that I am at the beginning of some interesting research.



[moderator note:] I moved this thread from the History and Iconography Forum, not so much because it cannot also properly 'belong' there - because it can - but because I thought it may get more varying feedback and discussion if placed in Talking Tarot... [end moderator note]

Umbrae gives one of the better links on the subject - succinct and to the point...

Over the past two decades, a number of books which seek to connect in various dubious ways more dark forces and unexplained phenomena, in addition to conspiracies, have emerged. This is, in view, a bit of a pity, for much of worthy documents have been discarded as a consequence.

Like the Tarot, Masonic history has started to gain respectability, and at least a couple of European Universities have appointed staff specifically for the area (one in Holland, the other I do not recall).

The Illuminati have, as mentioned, had a Masonic connection. Other groups since, however, have also appropriated the name without, in my view, justification.

But to go back to its possible connection to Tarot. Given the late appearance of any group using such a name, its Tarot connections would only be peripheral - it could be, for example, that some member or other also shared Tarot interests. Tarot, however, already existed and the Illuminati, like the Golden Dawn later, did not really affect Tarot's legitimate heritage.

With regards to some of the other points raised by Umbrae, the Cathar/Templar/Masonic connections are possible but only, in my view, quite indirectly: none of these groups had direct input into the creation or coming to being of Tarot.


I just finished the 3 am


Being the non-enlightened, I figured the illuminati was just a figment of the authors imagination... to research I go..and then to the book store to get his other book..YOU know..the Di Vince Code..

THANK YOU SO MUCH..this info made the book worth staying up till 3 am to finish it..




One of the most enlightening books on the subject is the underground cult classic "The Illuminati Trilogy", by Robert Shay and Robert Anton Wilson. Please bear in mind it is fictional, but that both Bobs were/are (Shay is dead) very intellectual scholarly types with a penchant for psychology, mysticism and self-enpowerment. Consequently the book is based around all the "factual" information that exists on this group and shows the paranoia and miring of truth that can happen when conspiracy theory runs too wild.

Historically, Weishaupt did form the Ancient Illuminated Seers of Bavaria in 1776 and that they were based on the older group of Ishmalians who's leader Hassan i Sabbah gave his name to both Assassins and Hashish. Whether they continued to this this day or were reformed again in more modern times is slightly less an important a question as to how much power they weild today. Anyone can reform a group, but not anyone can give that group great power. One such theory is that the modern day "Illuminati" group is the Carlyle group, which hires many powerful people such as George Bush Senior and manipulates policies in the way the Bilderburg group is meant to do for the industrialists. However there is nothing to suggest that the Carlyle group use magic in the way the Illuminati did.

Sorry I may have gone off on a tangent there, but I have studied conspiracy theory and secret societies for a film I am writing.

Phoenix Rising

I am reading this book too, and I also came to the conclusion that the illuminatti deep mystical knowledge of science and symbolism, is very much part of Tarot.
People can say they are a myth, but their greatest form of defence was to stay "hidden" or camouflage. How else were they able to infiltrate every organisation and system.
And yet their symbols are all over the world to see. Obelisks, domes, pentagrams, flamed torch, sun, cross. ankh. They base everything on duality, 5 and 2 are there sacred numbers. They base things also on the 4 elements and alchemy. Just like the magician, and the 4 elemental suits in the tarot, and what about the pentacles, their sacred symbol? I was just reading another thread on the "Rothchild canticles" And the image of "Hanged Man" and "Justice" We all know that the Rothchilds are "illuminatti".So to say the illuminatti has no connection to tarot or even creating it, I now have to wonder.

full deck

Phoenix Rising said:
. . . We all know that the Rothchilds are "illuminatti".So to say the illuminatti has no connection to tarot or even creating it, I now have to wonder.
I actually know a member of the English Rothschilds family -- a soprano -- I should ask her about this. There is so much depth and history to the Rothschilds that it would want a Very Thick Book just to talk about such. Frankly, I doubt that she would know much about this but it is her family. . .