The cloak of secrecy that runs the governments of the world has been the subject of conspiracy and fiction, from the simple spy thrillers of John La Carré to the best-selling fiction of Dan Brown about the Vatican: Da Vinci Code and Angels and Demons. This fiction covers a gamut of secret societies since the Middle Ages which began about 800 Anno Domini (AD), 4 centuries after the Dark Ages began in Europe and as the Roman Empire ended around 400 A.D after Constantine the Great.
Many of these works of fiction for popular consumption about secret societies are based in the reality of the history of about the next 4 centuries, until Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy was published around 14th century: the Knights Templar (the ideological forebears of modern central bankers and the American Freemasons of George Washington, and I speculate them to be the inspiration for the Renaissance in Italy) and the Hospitallers (I see them as the ideological inspiration for the Nobel-winning Doctors Without Borders, and the Red Cross since the 19th century after the Napoleonic wars).
The knights, who had become wealthy for their services to the Church and the monarchies, had lived in the area of today’s Franco-Germany during the period of the crusades and provided safety to the Christian pilgrims traveling between Europe and Jerusalem during the Caliphate in the Near East, beginning in 12th century England, France, Germany and Italy. Significant scholarship exists about the Knights Templar and the Teutonic Knights of Germany as Christianity began to unite Europe but not without tension between the Church, the aristocracies and the more liberal commoners.
The Enlightenment, in my view, can truly be placed off the continent of Europe in 1215 when the Magna Carta was published because of the appeal of the English nobles to King John I for a more participatory monarchy, and Modernity around the year 1439 when Gutenberg published the Bible in Germany using his printing press.
The not yet British Empire since Henry VIII divorced London from Rome, had created its own Anglican tradition of intellectualism which climaxed during his daughter Elizabeth I’s reign when the English colonization of North America began.
The confluence of these circumstances led to the social conditions in the 18th century, more commonly known as the period of the European Enlightenment, of Immanuel Kant the philosopher in Germany, Adam Smith the moral philosopher in Scotland and Voltaire the epistemologist in France, which resulted in the revolution in the 13 American colonies of the United Kingdom in 1776 and in the French Revolution in 1789.
This is the light: science as homage to God.
The shadows are the secret societies about which not many know but which wield considerable influence over shaping the distribution of power and wealth on the planet since the Industrial Revolution in mid-19th century. The Pentaverate or the now erstwhile secret society of the 5 wealthiest people in the world, including the Queen of England at one point in time; the Bohemian Club, a gathering of wealthy American conservatives and their government interests since the late 19th century; the Bilderberg Group tied to the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in its origins since the mid-20th century beginnings of the European Union and later of the leaders of the G6 post-World War II group of nations (United States and Canada, United Kingdom, Italy, France and Germany); and the Trilateral Commission of David Rockefeller which includes Japan along with the G6 or today’s G7.
The Illuminati is irrelevant. The war between the gnostic, progressivist, and dialectical materialist Hegelian modernity of 19th century science and technology − or Marxism (Afnaseyev, Marxist Philosophy) − and the Church is misplaced because science fuses with faith in the Socratic wisdom of Western Civilization for those who seek either or both.
It is seriously doubtful if the former Soviet Union could truly achieve the dialectical materialist goals of Marxism by eradicating the Orthodox Church (the opium of the masses, according to Karl Marx), because the Russian church was untouched and kept alive and well through the end of the Cold War in 1992, even after the destruction of the Russian aristocracy in 1917. I was there at its seat outside Moscow, Russia in 2001, the week after the 9/11 attacks. It was thriving. I, therefore, see Leninist-Stalinism as the radical, literalist, and originalist Iranaen Christian Orthodoxy of the four gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, pure Christianity, untouched by the Old Testament, translated as the economics of equal redistribution of wealth and production.
Three major secret societies, Bohemian Club, Bilderberg Group and Trilateral Commission, actively influence politics and policy in the western world at the highest levels (together with American college fraternities such as Skull and Bones of Yale University) but are largely out of public sight and try to remain nondescript, their ideological affiliations and activities unseen and unknown, including in the major news media, but their presence felt everywhere.
The reversal of hierarchy of the old world since the commoners took over their own governance by coming into light in 1776 after the destruction of the Knights Templar in the 14th century has produced the shadows of the aristocracies such as Bohemian Club (American sympathizers of the British crown), Bilderberg (continental European aristocracies) and the Trilateral Commission (inclusive of the Japanese aristocracy after World War II).