MOHAMMED WAS BORN circa 570 A.D. AS with Jesus, there are gaping
holes in the life history of Mohammed, especially in regard to his
childhood and early adulthood. To fill in the gaps, some historians
hypothesize that Mohammed was an orphan who had been shunted about
among relatives during his youth.
It is known that at age 25 he
married a wealthy widow, and some biographers believe that he worked
as a tradesman in her business for the next fifteen years, although
that is not entirely certain. At age 40, Mohammed suddenly emerged
as a religious prophet and the leader of a powerful new religious
According to Mohammed’s own statements, his religious mission was
triggered by an apparition. The vision occurred outside a secluded
cave to which Mohammed would frequently retire for prayer and
contemplation. The apparition was an “angel” bearing a message for
Mohammed to spread. This was not just any angel, however. It called
itself Gabriel—one of the most important of the Christian angels.
Mohammed described the meeting in these words:
The Koran [the holy book of Islam]
is no other than a revelation revealed to him*
One terrible in
power taught it to him, endued with wisdom. With even balance stood He in the highest part of the
Then He came nearer and approached, and was at a distance
of two bows, or even closer—
and he revealed to His servant what He
* Mohammed uses the third-person “him” when referring to himself.
The Koran repeats the story:
That this is the word of an illustrious Messenger, endued with
power, having influence with the Lord of the Throne, obeyed there by
Angels, faithful to his trust, and your compatriot is not one
possessed by jinn [spirits]; for he saw him in the clear horizon.
Mohammed was either semiconscious or in a trance when the angel
Gabriel ordered him to “Recite!” and record the message that the
angel was about to give him. The angel’s command to Mohammed was
much like the commands given earlier in history to Ezekiel of the
Old Testament and to “John” of the Book of Revelation by similar
When Mohammed awoke, it seemed to him that the angel’s words were
“inscribed upon his [Mohammed’s] heart.” This is significant, for it
suggests that Mohammed, like Ezekiel, John, and perhaps even
Constantine, had been drugged and mentally tampered with so that the
message would be more firmly implanted in his mind.
The message given to Mohammed was a new religion called “Islam,”
which means “Surrender.” Followers must “surrender” to God. Members
of Mohammed’s faith are therefore called “Moslems,” which comes from
the word “muslim” (“one who submits”). Islam was one more Custodial
religion designed to instill abject obedience in humans.
The Supreme Being of the Islam faith is named “Allah,” who was said
by Mohammed to be the the same God as the Jewish and Christian
Jehovah. Two key themes of the Koran are its Day of Judgment
prophecy and its “fire and brimstone” depiction of Hell. Mohammed
honored Moses and Jesus as Allah’s two previous messengers and
proclaimed Islam to be the third and final revelation from God. It
was therefore the duty of all Jews and Christians to convert to
Islam. Hebrews and Christians tended to be less than cooperative
with Mohammed’s demand. After all, they had been warned in their own
apocalyptic writings about the dangers of “false prophets.” The
result has been some of the bloodiest fighting in world history.
Like so many Custodial religions before it, Islam did not allow
people the luxury of choosing whether or not to become adherents.
Mohammed embarked on a program of conquest to make it clear which way
the choice was to go. Using the tactics of a generalissimo, the
“divinely inspired” Mohammed raised an army and set off to
convert ”unfaithful ones” (“infidels”) to his faith. Mohammed’s
apocalyptic army cut a wide bloody swath through most of the Middle
East, including important Christian centers. The militant Moslem
empire eventually stretched as far east as India where elements of
Islam were incorporated into the Hindu religion. Untold lives were
lost during the Islamic conquests because the Islamic armies were
prone to commit fearsome genocides as part of their mission to bring
Utopia to mankind.
To most “infidel” Christians, Moslems were nothing more than savage
“heathens” (“nonbelievers”). This set up an inevitable conflict into
which millions of people would be dragged. Five hundred years after
the death of Mohammed, the Christian world launched a coordinated
military effort to force the Moslems out of the Holy Land. That
effort is known as the Crusades.
The Christian Crusades to free Palestine from the Moslems took place
between 1099 and 1270 A.D.
Skirmishes and minor battles between
Christians and Moslems had broken out beforehand, but it was a
call-to-arms by Pope Urban II in 1095 that finally turned those
skirmishes into an
organized war effort involving nearly every Christian ruler of
Europe. Hundreds of thousands of Christians enlisted in the Crusades
after being promised religious blessings, fiefdoms, and spoils of
conquest. Volunteers came from nearly every social class. For many
serfs and peasants, the Papal call-to-arms represented a way to
escape feudal lords and perhaps to return as wealthy heroes.
The Crusades got off to a good, but bloody, start. The Christians
captured Jerusalem in the summer of 1099. Although the knights and
peasants who marched under Christian banners were extolled to
practice high virtues and chivalry, they frequently degenerated into
butchery and other acts of viciousness. When the Crusaders took
Jerusalem in 1099, they murdered many of the non-Christian survivors
in a slaughter that claimed the lives of more than 10,000 victims.
Not only were the Crusaders killing Moslems, they were also killing
Jews, who were considered by many Christians to be as heathen as the
Moslems. The slaughter of Jews began even before the first Crusade
to the Holy Land. In the year 1095, Christian factions started
murdering Jews in Europe. A genocidal wave in the German Rhineland
was the first major episode; it was sparked by unsubstantiated
rumors that Rhineland Jews were using Christian children in their
religious sacrifices. Obliterating the Jews became an important
element of the Crusades, and the massacres continued even after the
Crusades to Jerusalem had ended.
The Crusades had another important effect on Europe. Several decades
before the launching of the First Crusade, Pope Gregory VII had
attempted to put the Roman Catholic Church under greater centralized
control. Prior to Gregory’s effort, the Catholic Church in Europe
was a loosely-knit organization run primarily by non clergymen; the
type of organization envisioned by Christianity’s earliest founders.
After Pope Urban II ascended to the Papacy and rallied all good
Christians to fight the unholy Moslems, Christian princes and
supporters began pledging allegiance directly to the Pope, thereby
hastening the centralization effort attempted earlier by Pope
Gregory VII. The power of the Roman Papacy increased as the holy
wars dragged on and
growing numbers of people proclaimed their Papal loyalty.
Behind the Crusades lay the Brotherhood. The Christian Crusaders
were led primarily by two powerful knight organizations with intimate
Brotherhood ties: the Knights Hospitaler and the Knights of the
Temple (“Knights Templar”).
The “Knights Hospitaler” were so named because they operated a
hospital in Jerusalem to help pilgrims in distress. The Hospitalers
began operations in the year 1048 as a charitable order. Their
purpose was aid and comfort. When the first Crusaders successfully
captured the Holy City, the Hospitalers began to receive generous
financial support from the wealthier Crusaders. In the year 1118,
seventy years after their founding, the Knights Hospitaler underwent
a change of leadership and purpose.
They were made into a military
order dedicated to fighting the Moslems who were continually trying
to recapture Jerusalem. With this change of purpose came a change in
name; the Hospitalers were variously called the “Order of Knights Hospitaler of St. John,” “Knights of St. John of Jerusalem,” or
simply, “Knights of St. John.” The Hospitalers had named themselves
after John, son of the King of Cyprus. John had gone to Jerusalem to
aid Christian pilgrims and knights.
There is some doubt as to whether the Hospitalers were founded as a
Brotherhood organization. They reportedly did not function as one at
the outset. However, they soon became affiliated with the Brotherhood
network by adopting Brotherhood traditions and titles. They became
ruled by a Grand Master and developed secret rites and rituals.
By 1119, one year after the Hospitalers had become a fighting order,
the Templar Knights were in existence. The Templars originally called
themselves the “Order of the Poor Knights of Christ” because they
took solemn vows of poverty. Their name was later changed to
“Knights of the Temple” after they were housed near the site
where Solomon’s temple had once stood. Although the Templars and
Hospitalers had a common enemy in the Moslems, the two Christian
organizations became bitter rivals.
The Templar Knights began their existence as a branch of the
Brotherhood. They practiced a deep mystical tradition and used many
Brotherhood titles, notably “Grand Master.” Like the Hospitaler
Knights, the Templars received large sums of money from well-to-do
Christian crusaders. The Templars thereby became enormously wealthy
and were able to transform themselves into an international banking
house during the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. The Templars
loaned large sums of money to European kings, princes, merchants,
and to at least one Moslem ruler. Most of the Templars’ riches were
stored in strong rooms in their Paris and London temples, causing
those cities to become leading financial centers.
After the fall of Jerusalem and the final victory of the Moslems in
1291, the fortunes of both knightly orders changed. The Knights of
St. John (Hospitalers) were forced to flee the Holy Land. They took
up residence on a succession of islands during the ensuing
centuries. With the changes of location came changes in name. They
became the “Knights of Rhodes” after moving to the island of Rhodes.
They were the “Knights of Malta” when they moved to that island and
ruled it. While on Malta, the Knights became a major military and
naval power in the Mediterranean until their defeat in 1789 by
After enjoying temporary protection under Russian Emperor
Paul I, the Knights of Malta had their headquarters moved to Rome in
1834 by Pope Leo XIII. Today they are known as the “Sovereignand
Military Order of Malta” (SMOM) and have the unusual distinction of
being the world’s smallest nation. Located in a walled enclave in
central Rome, SMOM still retains its status as a sovereign state,
although new Grand Masters of the Order must be approved by the
Pope. SMOM runs hospitals, clinics, and leper colonies throughout the
world. It also gives active assistance to anti-Communist causes and
is surprisingly influential in political, business, and intelligence
circles today despite its small size.*
* Recent American members of SMOM have included the late William
Casey (American C.I.A. director), Lee Iacocca (chairman of the
Chrysler Corporation), Alexander Haig (former U.S. Secretary of
State), and William A. Schreyer (president of Merrill Lynch).
The Templar Knights did not fare as well as the Hospitalers after
the Crusades. They were forced to flee with the Hospitalers to the
island of Cyprus, whereupon the Templars split up and returned to
their many Templar houses (“preceptories”) in Europe. The Templars
came under heavy criticism for their failure to save the Holy Land
and rumors circulated that they engaged in heresy and immorality.
Accusations were made that the Templars spat on the cross during
their initiations and forced members to engage in homosexual acts.
By 1307, the Templar controversy had become so strong that Philip IV
the Fair of France ordered the arrest of all Templars within his
dominion and used torture to extract confessions.
Five years later,
the Pope dissolved the Templar Order by Papal decree. Many Templars
were executed, including Grand Master Jacques de Molay, who was
publicly burned at the stake on March 11, 1314 in front of the
cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris. Nearly all Templar properties were
confiscated and turned over to the Hospitaler Knights. The long and
intense rivalry between the Hospitalers and Templars had finally
come to an end. The Hospitalers emerged as the victors. The
Hospitalers’ victory could not have occurred at a more fortuitous
time for there had been serious discussion within Papal circles
about merging the two orders—a plan which would have been completely
unacceptable to both.
Despite the downfall of the Templar Knights, the organization
managed to survive. According to Freemasonic historian, Albert MacKey, the Knights Templar were given a home in Portugal by
Denis after their banishment from the rest of Catholic Europe. In
Portugal, the Templars were granted their usual rights and
privileges, they wore the same costumes, and they were governed by
the same rules they had before. The decree which re-established the
Templars in Portugal stated that they were in that country to be
rehabilitated. Pope Clement V approved the rehabilitation plan and
issued a bull (official proclamation) commanding that the Templars
change their name to “Knights of Christ.” The Templars, or “Knights
of Christ,” also changed the cross on their uniform from the
eight-pointed Maltese cross to the official Latin cross.
The Templars became quite powerful in their new home. In 1420, King
John I gave the Knights of Christ control of Portuguese possessions
in the Indies. Subsequent Portuguese monarchs expanded the Knights’
proprietorship to any new countries which the Knights might
discover. The Knights of Christ became so powerful, reports
Albert MacKey, that several Portuguese kings felt compelled to curtail the
Knights’ influence by taking over the Grand Master position. The
Knights of Christ survived under Portuguese sponsorship until well
into the eighteenth century, at which time the Templar name
re-emerged and took on renewed importance in the stormy political
affairs of Europe, as we shall see later.
There was a third Christian knight organization during the Crusades
worth mentioning: the Teutonic Knights. The Teutonic Knights were
originally called the “Order of the Knights of the Hospital of St.
Mary of the Teutons in Jerusalem.” Like the Hospitalers, the
Teutonic Knights started as a charitable order. They operated a
hospital in Jerusalem to aid Christians making pilgrimages to the
Holy Land. In March 1198, the Teutonic Knights were given the rank of
an order of knights, which made them into a fighting order. Like the
Templars, the Teutonic Knights lived a semi monastic lifestyle,
practiced initiation rites, and were ruled by a Grand Master. The
Teutonic Knights permitted only Teutons [Germans] to become members.
They also feuded a great deal with the Hospitalers and Templars.
During the Crusades when Brotherhood military organizations were
valiantly leading Christian armies to fight the Moslems, other
groups in the Brotherhood network were rallying Moslems to battle the
Christians! Of the several Brotherhood branches promoting the cause
of Islam, one is of particular interest to us: the
sect of the
Mohammed died in 632 A.D. A struggle immediately
ensued over who was to become his successor. This caused
the Islamic religion to break apart into competing sects, each
having its own ideas about who was to succeed Mohammed.
One such Islamic faction was the “Shia” sect, which adhered
to a strong “End of the World ” tradition. Shiites believed
in the “Millennium”: a Day of Judgment followed by a
thousand years of peace and spiritual salvation. Eventually the Shia
sect itself split apart. One faction to emerge from the Shia split
was the Ismaili sect, which gave birth to the Assassins.
The Ismailians broke away from the other Shiites in the eighth
century. The Ismaili sect was a Brotherhood secret society with a
lodge system similar to Freemasonry and to other Brotherhood
organizations. The Ismaili Grand Lodge was situated in Cairo where it
practiced step-by-step initiations with all of the attendant symbols
and mysteries. Led by a Grand Master, the Ismailians promulgated a
very strong apocalyptic message complete with the promise of a coming
One Ismaili lodge member was a man named Hasan-iSabbah. Mr. Sabbah’s
mystical conversion came about as the result of a “severe and
dangerous illness” during which he believed that God had purged him
and had given him a spiritual rebirth. In 1078, at the Grand Lodge
in Cairo, Mr. Sabbah asked the Ismaili caliph* for permission
to spread the Ismaili gospel in Persia.
* A “caliph” is a successor to Mohammed. The title “caliph” was
given to those Moslem heads of state who claimed to be a successor
The caliph granted Mr. Sabbah’s request on the condition that Sabbah agree to support the
caliph’s eldest son, Nizar, as the next (ninth) caliph. Sabbah
accepted the deal and named his new Ismaili branch the “Nizaris”
after the caliph’s son. It was not long, however, before Mr. Sabbah’s branch became known by its more famous name:
The Assassins are usually referred to as a religious sect. They were,
more accurately, a secret society. According to Masonic historian
Albert MacKey, the Assassins adopted the organizational structure of
the Ismailians. The Assassins practiced step-by-step initiations and
possessed a secret mystical doctrine. Mr. MacKey adds that the
Assassins appear to have practiced three of the very same
fraternal degrees used in Freemasonry today: Apprentice, Fellow, and
Master. The Assassins had a religious code similar to
the Hospitaler and Teutonic Knights. The Assassins were an integral
part of the Brotherhood network.
A distinguishing feature of the Assassin organization was its use of
drugs, primarily hashish, for mystical and other purposes. In fact,
the word “assassin” comes from the word “hashshishin,” which means
“users of hashish.” The Assassins and several other Brotherhood
groups in history extolled the virtues of mind-altering
Pharmaceuticals as a way to achieve mystical enlightenment.
The Assassins were also a fighting organization with an army. Grand
Master Sabbah chose a fortress located high in the northern
mountains of Iran for the headquarters of his new group. This
Assassin fortress was known as “Alamut,” which means “Eagle’s
Teaching” or “Eagle’s Nest.” The Assassins became a formidable
military and political power in the region and eventually controlled
other fortresses in Persia and Syria. The Assassins feuded with other
Moslem organizations and fought against the Knights Templar and other
Christian armies during the Crusades. To help win its feuds and wars,
the Assassins developed the deadly tool for which they became famous
and feared: the tool of the “lone assassin.”
Most people today are painfully aware of the phenomenon of the
so-called “lone assassin.” This is usually a young man in his
twenties or thirties who is driven by crazed delusions and who
displays little or no concern for his own safety as he murders an
important leader in broad daylight, in public, and in front of
witnesses. The killing has tremendous shock value and it can greatly
affect the political direction of a nation.
Many people believe that so-called “lone assassins” are products of
our modern age. It is quite amusing to read ponderous psychiatric
tomes to that effect. In truth, the “lone assassin” has been a
political institution for over seven hundred years, if not longer.
Seven hundred years ago, however, no pretense was made that the “lone
assassins” acted alone, as is done today. Back then, the “lone
assassin” was known to be an effective and terrifying tool of
political and social control. It was a technique used by the Assassin
organization to win its wars, increase its political influence,
enemies, and enlarge its coffers by extortion.
How did the Assassin sect get young men to commit the murders? It is
not easy to make people kill others, especially when the murderer is
likely to be caught and slain himself. The Assassin organization had
an effective method for overcoming this natural resistance and
programming young men to kill. One of the earliest people
to describe the Assassin programming technique was Marco Polo, the
famous European traveler of the 13th century who wrote a bestselling
book about his journeys. Although Mr. Polo was accused by a few
people in his own time of fabricating stories, subsequent
investigation has verified nearly everything he described in his
According to Mr. Polo, a portion of the Assassin fortress in Alamut
had been converted into a beautiful secret garden fashioned after
the paradise described in Mohammed’s visions of Heaven. The garden
grew almost every imaginable type of fruit and was watered with
streams of wine, milk, and honey. The palaces were beautifully
ornamented and had a company of singers, dancers, and musicians. If
certain young men in the region showed promise as potential
murderers, they were drugged, usually with opium or hashish, and
taken to the secret garden. There they were pampered for a few days
and nothing was denied them, including women.
They were then drugged
again and returned to their homes. The young men believed that
Assassin leaders had transported them to Heaven and back. Eager to
return, the young men would gladly follow the instructions of their
Assassin leaders. The heaven-struck underlings were often told that
a return to paradise lay in boldly assassinating a targeted enemy
leader. The young assassin was instructed to wait in a public place
and strike down the victim with a dagger as the victim passed by.
Because the young assassins would often be killed on the spot or be
later executed, they were made to believe that their death at the
scene of the crime or by later execution would result in a return to
the paradise they remembered.
The notoriety of the Assassins spread. It was rumored that some
European kings were paying tribute to the Assassins to avoid
becoming targets. Although the extent of
Assassin activity in Europe is still debated today (some historians
assert that the Assassins focused most of their deadly practices on
the conflicts going on in the Middle East), the Assassins became
famous far and wide. As a result, all people who attempt the murder
of a political leader have come to be known as “assassins,” or
“users of hashish.” Although most modern “assassins” have not
been hashish users, many have shown evidence of considerable mental
tampering, which will be discussed near the end of this book.
By the end of the 13th century, the Mongols had overrun the Middle
East and had destroyed major Assassin strongholds. Interestingly,
the Mongols were also inspired by mystical beliefs. The Assassins
managed to survive the onslaught, and they exist today. Modern
Assassin sects are reported to be peaceably settled in India, Iran,
and Syria. Their titular head is the “Aga Khan,” who is the
spiritual leader of all Ismailians worldwide. The Ismailians are
estimated to number about 20 million people today.
As of 1840, the Aga Khans have been operating out of India because of an unsuccessful
rebellion in 1838 of Aga Khan I against the Persian Shah. When the
rebellion failed, Britain offered sanctuary to the Aga Khan in
India, which was then under British rule. Since then, the Aga Khans
have been traveling in elite circles of Western society. Recent Aga
Khans have received educations at Oxford, Harvard, and in
Switzerland. The Aga Khans have also gained a place in the
international banking community through their establishment of a
central bank in Damascus, Siria.
It may be a coincidence that “lone assassins” arose as an important
phenomenon in the United States at just about the time that Aga Khan
I was establishing a relationship with the British in the early 19th
century. The first known “lone assassin” to strike a U.S. President
did so in 1835. The intended victim was Andrew Jackson who was,
interestingly, a member of a Knights Templar organization
in America. Since then, U.S. Presidents have been the targets of “lone
assassins” every ten to twenty years. Many other Western leaders and
public figures have also been victims. Although I have seen no
evidence that the Assassin sect
itself is behind modern “lone assassins” episodes, it is clear that
their technique has been picked up and used by influential political
sources with Brotherhood connections in the Western world, as I
shall discuss more fully in a later chapter.
As we have seen, the Crusade era witnessed the birth of institutions
which still affect us today. To the list we can add two famous
Christian Orders: the Franciscans and the Dominicans.
Franciscans adopted the cord-at-the-loins outfit and bald spot used
by ancient Egyptian Brotherhood priests at El Amarna. The
Franciscans appeared to be quite humane.
The Dominicans, on the other
hand, were placed in charge of the most widely-hated by-product of
the Crusades: the Catholic Inquisition.
The medieval Inquisition has been universally condemned as one of
the most oppressive human institutions ever developed. It was known
for its tortures and zealous excesses. The Inquisition arose out of
an effort by Pope Innocent II to stamp out a large heretical sect in
the south of France known as the “Albigensians.” Innocent II had
called for a special Crusade in 1208 to enter France and wipe out
the sect. The five-year war which ensued devastated the region. Ten
years later, a new Pope, Gregory IX, continued the action. He
placed the Dominicans in charge of investigating the Albigensians.
Gregory gave the Dominican Order full legal power to name and condemn
all surviving heretics.
Out of this campaign grew the full inhuman machinery of the Catholic Inquisition which sought to
stamp out heresy of every type. The Inquisition generated a
fearful climate of intellectual and spiritual oppression in Europe
for the next six hundred years. Hearsay, innuendo, and honest
intellectual disagreement led many decent people to the torture rack
and auto-da-fe (death by burning). The social scars are still visible
today in the instinctive fear so many people have of expressing
nonconforming ideas. The Inquisition helped breed a social reaction
of violence to nonconforming ideas that the world has not yet fully
It is clear that the Christian Church had undergone many changes by
the time the Crusades ended. The Church was no longer the
humanitarian decentralized religion envisioned by Jesus. The new
Catholic (“Undivided”) Church headquartered in Rome had succumbed to
the “reforms” of the East Roman emperors. It was a religion Jesus
would have deplored.
Fortunately, after the demise of the
Inquisition, the Catholic Church began to improve and it has many
good qualities today.
Perhaps the most significant event of the Crusades does not involve
the waging of war, the programming of assassins, or the creation of
an Inquisition. It entails the making of a peace.
In the year 1228, German emperor Frederick II led a Crusade to
Jerusalem. Frederick was not in good graces with the Pope at the
time. Frederick has been described as a,
highly educated prince, a sworn enemy of the papacy on political
grounds, who had acquired by marriage the title to what was left of
the kingdom of Jerusalem.”1
Frederick’s fight with Pope Gregory IX had begun only one year before
his trip to Jerusalem. The conflict between Frederick and Pope
Gregory centered around the issue of centralized Papal power.
Frederick opposed it and Gregory was striving to hasten it. This
dispute caused Frederick to be put under sentence of
excommunication—a sentence finally carried out in 1245.
While under the sentence, but not yet excommunicated, the
unrepentant Frederick journeyed to his kingdom in Jerusalem at the
head of his own crusade. Despite a deep involvement with the Teutonic
Knights, Frederick II proved on that trip that he could be a man of
peace. Instead of prolonging war with the Moslems, Frederick
negotiated a peace treaty. He apparently felt that it was in
everyone’s best interests to end the religious strife, and that is
precisely what he did. Frederick accomplished this feat by
negotiating with the reigning Moslem leader, Sultan Kamil. Within
a year of starting his talks with the Sultan, and without the
approval of the Pope, Frederick concluded a treaty signed in 1229
that gave Jerusalem back to the Christians for ten years provided
that the Christians did not arm themselves. The arrangement worked.
Using negotiation and appeals to reason, Frederick had
accomplished in one short trip what the Popes had claimed
they were trying to do for almost 130 years with warfare
and blood. Under Frederick’s treaty, Christians were free
to inhabit Jerusalem and make pilgrimages there, and the
Moslems were freed from the threat posed by Christian
Many Christian and Moslem leaders were not at
all happy with this arrangement, however, for Frederick
had set it up,
“leaving both parties indignant at so peaceful
a settlement. When the truce finally ran out in 1239, the holy war
was resumed ...” 2 *
* There is an amusing sideline to the story. After Frederick
completed the treaty, he wanted to be crowned monarch of Jerusalem
per his inheritance. Because he was under sentence of
excommunication, no Catholic authority would perform the ceremony
for him. Frederick, however, was not one to be thwarted by
technicalities. He simply crowned himself and sailed back home to
We might legitimately ask, why was Frederick’s treaty
not extended or a similar one negotiated? What purpose was
served by diving into seventy additional years of bloody
warfare? The Christians wound up losing the Holy Land
So often we hear that wars are a product of basic human nature, yet
in one peace effort we saw 130 years of raging conflict end through
the effort of one man appealing to the reason and cooperation of
another man, resulting in a peace for the duration of the treaty. We
can see that the ability of people to have peace is as strong, if
not stronger, than a desire for war.
What then, drove Moslems and
Christians to slaughter one another over a trivial bit of dry real
One answer to this question may be found in what the Moslems and
Christians thought they were ultimately fighting for: their spiritual
salvation and freedom. They believed that by fighting, and perhaps
even dying gloriously, for their faith, they were guaranteed
eternal salvation. History has clearly demonstrated that the drive
for spiritual freedom is so strong that it can override any human
drive, including the urge for physical self-preservation.
point, people will sacrifice their own physical existences, and even
the physical survival of loved ones, if they believe that the
sacrifice will ensure their spiritual integrity or that it will
bring about their spiritual salvation. When genuine spiritual
knowledge is distorted, yet the desire for spiritual salvation
continues to be stimulated, a great many people can be led into doing
a great many stupid things. One important step to solving the
problem of war, then, is to achieve a true understanding of the
spirit and an actual way to its rehabilitation.
When we look at the spiritual practices of the Christian knights and
the Moslem Ismailians, we discover that participation in warfare
was often exalted as a spiritual quest. Warriors on both sides were
inspired by corrupted Brotherhood mysticisms which taught that
spiritual rewards could be earned by engaging in military endeavors
against fellow human beings. This was the mythology of the
“spiritually noble” war in which gallant soldiers were promised
eternal salvation and a place in Heaven for fighting a noble cause.
This mythology still remains vital today for recruiting people to
participate in continued warfare. It twists the urge for spiritual
freedom into an honoring of war.
What is war, then, if not a noble quest?
Analyzed down to its most basic components, warfare is nothing more
than the act of causing solid objects to destructively collide with
other solid objects. That might sometimes be fun, but there is not
much spiritual benefit to be derived from constantly engaging in it.
Although it is true that war has many elements of a game, the
destructive nature of war causes it to be little more than a series
of criminal acts: primarily arson, battery, and murder. This reveals
something of great significance:
War is the institutionalization of criminality.
War can never bring
about spiritual improvement because criminality is one of the main
causes of mental and spiritual deterioration.
Societies which exalt criminal actions as a noble quest will suffer
a rapid deterioration in the mental and spiritual condition of their
inhabitants. “Spiritual” doctrines which exalt combat are doctrines
which degrade the human race.
Is not warfare in pursuit of a just cause a good thing?
The biggest problem with using violent force to fight for a cause is
that the rules of force operate on completely different principles
than do the principles of right and wrong. The victorious use of
violent force depends upon skills that have nothing to do with
whether or not one’s cause is a just one. The man who can draw his
six-shooter the fastest is not necessarily the man with the best
We like our heroes when they can outshoot or physically
overpower the bad guys, and there is nothing wrong with their being
able to do so, but not all of our heroes can. Those who have a
legitimate cause should therefore be wary of the temptation to assert
the rightness of their beliefs in the arena of violent force since
their cause may undeservedly lose. There are many effective methods
to promote good causes and make them win, but those methods are
seldom used in a world educated to use violence as the ultimate
court of appeal.
The Crusades and other religious conflicts have often been fueled by
the issue of who is a true “messiah” and who is not. Passions can
run strong on this topic. It therefore behooves us at this time to
discuss what a “messiah” might or might not be.
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Messiahs and Means
A GLOBAL civilization such as ours where spiritual knowledge and
freedom appear to have been tampered with, there would obviously be
a place for someone to develop a useful and understandable body of
knowledge about the spirit and the spirit’s relationship to the
universe. Because verifiable spiritual phenomena seem to be
consistent from person to person, and from time to time, it is
probable that all spiritual realities are rooted in consistent laws
and axioms, just like astronomy or physics. If someone were to
discover and methodically outline those laws and axioms, he or
she would be doing a great service. Such discoveries could open up a
whole new science. Would a person who did this be a “messiah”?
Promises of a “messiah” have been put forth by a great many
religions, both maverick and Custodial. The word ”messiah” has had
several meanings, from simply “teacher” to “liberator.” A “messiah”
could be anyone from a person who develops a successful science of
the spirit to someone who is actually able to spiritually liberate
the human race.
Throughout history, there have been thousands of people claiming to
be a “messiah,” or they have been given the label by others even if
they did not claim it themselves. Such messianic claims are usually
based upon prophecies recorded earlier in history, such as the
Buddhist Mettaya legend, the “Second Coming” prophecy of the Book of
Revelation, the apocalyptic teachings of Zoroaster, or the Hebrew
prophecies. Many people look at all messianic claims with outright
skepticism; others become avid followers of a leader whom they
believe to be the fulfillment of a religious prophecy. This raises
the question: has there ever been, or will there ever be, a genuine
messiah? How would one identify such a person?
Anyone who successfully develops a functional science of the spirit
would obviously have a legitimate claim to the title of “messiah” in
the “teacher” sense. There is nothing mystical or apocalyptic about
this: a person makes some discoveries and shares them. If this
knowledge becomes widely known and results in widespread spiritual
salvation, then we enter the realm of the “liberator” or
“prophesized messiah.” How do we identify such a liberator when
there exist so many different prophecies with so many ways
to interpret them?
The answer is simple: The would-be liberator must succeed. That
person must earn the title; it is not God-given.
This is a terribly cold and uncompromising way of looking at it. It
strips away the magic and mysticism normally associated with
messianic prophecy. It forces any person who would claim the title of
messiah to actually bring about peace and spiritual salvation,
because such a prophecy is not going to be fulfilled unless someone
causes it happen. This compels the would-be liberator to fully
overcome the overwhelming obstacles which act against these
universal goals. This is one of the most unenviable tasks that any
person could ever hope to undertake. We need only look at past
“liberators” to appreciate the long hard road that such a person must
To date, no one has succeeded, but it is certainly a
challenge worthy of the best talent.
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BY THE TIME of the Crusades, major dramas had unfolded on the
opposite side of the globe. Great civilizations had come and gone on
the American continents.
It is difficult to study the history of the ancient American
civilizations because nearly all original records from those
civilizations were destroyed centuries ago. As a result, historians
are often confronted with disputes over the most basic facts, such
as dates. For example, time estimates regarding the great Mayan
civilization have placed it everywhere from 30,000 years ago to
12,000 years ago to only 700 years ago. For the purposes of this
book, I will use the dates most commonly accepted by modern
historians and archaeologists.
Many archaeologists believe that the first important North American
civilization was the Olmec society of Mexico. It is estimated to have
flourished from about 800 B.C. until 400
B.C. Very little is known about
the Olmecs except that they left
behind impressive ruins which included a large pyramid. The
existence of the pyramid is strong evidence that there
was interaction between the Old and New Worlds in the
The Olmecs are believed to have given birth to the famous Mayan
civilization which followed. The Mayan culture extended from Mexico
to Central America and lasted from about 300 B.C. until 900 A.D.
Like the Olmecs, the Mayans were fond of building pyramids.
Surprisingly, some Mayan pyramids were given a limestone facing like
the earlier pyramids in Egypt. The Mayans also copied the Egyptians
by mummifying bodies and by holding similar beliefs about a physical
According to historian Raymond Cartier:
Other analogies with Egypt are discernable in
the admirable art of
the Mayas. Their mural paintings and frescoes and decorated vases
show a race of men with strongly marked Semitic [Mesopotamian]
features, engaged in all sorts of activities: agriculture, fishing,
building, politics and religion. Egypt alone has depicted these
activities with the same cruel verisimilitude [appearance of
truth]; but the pottery of the Mayas recalls that of the Etruscans
[an ancient civilization of Italy]; their bas-reliefs remind one
of India, and the huge steep stairways of their pyramidal temples are
like those at Angkor [in Cambodia, dedicated to Hindu worship].
Unless they obtained their models from outside, their brains must
have been so constructed that they adopted the same forms of
artistic expression as all the other great ancient civilizations of
Europe and Asia. Did civilization, then, spring from one particular
geographical region and then spread gradually in every direction like
a forest fire? Or did it appear spontaneously and separately in
various parts of the world? Were some races the teachers and others
the pupils, or were they all self-taught? Isolated seeds, or one
parent stem giving off shoots in everydirection?1
The coincidences are far too strong for the American civilizations
to have arisen independently of the Old World societies. Jungian
theories of a “collective unconscious” are hardly satisfactory. The
striking similarities indicate that the American civilizations were
part of a global society, even if ancient American inhabitants were
not aware of it. A similar situation exists today. In different
cities around the world, we find modem skyscrapers that look
remarkably alike no matter where on the globe they stand: from
Singapore to Africa to the United States. It can be rather a surprise
to see in a remote African nation a tall glassy skyscraper that is
virtually identical to a skyscraper in Chicago.
culture, however, may be radically different in each country,
indicating that the skyscraper in Africa is not a product of the
native African culture, but is the product of an independent global
influence. A similar global influence clearly existed more than a
millennium ago as evidenced by the remarkable similarities between
ancient Mayan and Egyptian cultures. That global influence appears to
have been the Custodial society, because as soon as we review
ancient American writings, we encounter once again our Custodial
Custodians were worshipped by ancient Americans as humanlike “Gods”
who hailed from other worlds. As in the Eastern Hemisphere,
Custodians in America were eventually disguised by a cloak of
mythology. As in Egypt and Mesopotamia, Custodial servants in
America were the priests, who held considerable political power
because of their special relationship to mankind’s reported
extraterrestrial masters. It is therefore not surprising to find
evidence that the Brotherhood existed in the ancient Americas. For
example, the snake was an important religious symbol throughout the
ancient Western Hemisphere. Several Freemasonic historians claim
evidence of early Masonic rites in pre-Columbian societies.
Brotherhood symbol of
the swastika was also prominent, as Professor
W. Norman Brown of the University of Pennsylvania points out on page
27 of his book, The Swastika: A Study of the Nazi Claims of Its
A curious problem lies in the presence of the swastika in
America before the time of Columbus. It is frequent
in northern, central and southern America, and has
many variant forms.
The American civilizations had a history similar to that of the Old
World. It was filled with wars, genocides, and calamities. Cities
and religious centers in ancient America came and went. One thing
that remained consistent was the building of pyramids. The Toltecs,
a civilization which arose from the Mayan society, continued the
pyramid-building tradition and constructed the fabulous Pyramid of
the Sun in Mexico. This pyramid is larger than the Great Pyramid of
Egypt in sheer bulk and is crafted with the same
stonecutting precision that characterizes its Egyptian counterpart.
When the Spaniards invaded America in the 16th century, they
deliberately destroyed nearly everything they could of the ancient
American cultures, except for the gold and precious metals which were
shipped to Spain. At that time in history, the Inquisition was at
its height and Spain was its most zealous advocate.
Americans were considered pagan, and so Christian missionaries
engaged in an energetic campaign to destroy all records and artifacts
related to the American religions. Unfortunately, those records
included priceless history and science texts. The effect of this
obliteration was much like the destruction of the Alexandria Library
by Christians earlier: it created a substantial “black out”
regarding some of mankind’s ancient history. This has left a great
many unanswered questions about the Mayans.
For example, the Mayans
built many fabulous religious centers and then abandoned them.
Some historians believe that the abandonment was done suddenly and
that its cause remains a mystery. Others conclude that it was done
gradually as the Mayan society decayed. The Mayans were also known to
practice human sacrifice. Some historians believe that the
sacrifices were an infrequent ritual; others think that the
sacrifices amounted to full scale genocide claiming 50,000 lives per
year. Where does the truth lie?
One book has surfaced which purports to be a record of ancient Mayan
beliefs. It is known as the Popol Vuh (“Council Book”). The Popol
Vuh is not a genuinely ancient work.
It was first written in the sixteenth century by an unknown Mayan. It
was later translated into Spanish by Father Francisco Ximenez of the
Dominican Order. Ximenez’s translation was first published in Vienna
in 1857 and it is the earliest surviving version of the Popul Vuh.
The Popol Vuh is said to be a collection of Mayan beliefs and
legends as they had been passed down orally through the centuries.
It is clear, however, that many Christian ideas were incorporated
into the work, either by the original unknown Mayan author, by Father
Ximenez, or by both. It is also obvious that the Popol Vuh contains
many tales of pure fiction mixed in with what is said to be the true
story of the creation of man.
Nevertheless, several segments of the Popol Vuh are worth considering because they repeat important
religious and historical themes we have seen elsewhere, but with far
greater sophistication than is found in Christian writings. Those
themes are expressed by the Popol Vuh within the context of the
multiple Gods of the ancient Mayas.
The Popul Vuh states that mankind had been created to be a servant
of the “Gods.” The “Gods” are quoted:
“Let us make him who shall nourish and sustain us! What shall we do
to be invoked, in order to be remembered on earth? We have already
tried with our first creations, our first creatures; but we could
not make them praise and venerate us. So, then, let us try to make
obedient, respectful beings who will nourish and sustain us.” 2
According to the Popul Vuh, the “Gods” had made creatures known as
“figures of wood” before creating Homo sapiens. Said to look and
talk like men, these odd creatures of wood “existed and multiplied;
they had daughters, they had sons. .. .”3
They were, however,
inadequate servants for the “Gods.” To explain why, the Popol Vuh
expresses a sophisticated spiritual truth not found in Christianity,
but which is found in earlier Mesopotamian writings. The “figures of
wood” did not have souls, relates the Popol Vuh, and so they walked
on all fours “aimlessly.” In other words,
without souls (spiritual beings) to animate the bodies, the ”Gods”
found that they had created living creatures which could
biologically reproduce, but which lacked the intelligence to have
goals or direction.
The “Gods” destroyed their “figures of wood” and held lengthy
meetings to determine the shape and composition of their next
attempt. The “Gods” finally produced creatures to which spiritual
beings could be attached. That new and improved creature was Homo
* According to Sumerian texts, Homo
sapiens resembled Custodial bodies. This may explain why the “Gods” of the Popol Vuh
were successful with Homo sapiens, but not with other types of
bodies: spiritual beings were more willing to inhabit bodies which
resembled those they had already animated before.
Creating Homo sapiens did not end Custodial headaches, however.
According to the Popol Vuh, the first Homo sapiens were too
intelligent and had too many abilities!
They [first Homo sapiens] were endowed with intelligence; they saw
and instantly they could see far, they succeeded in seeing, they
succeeded in knowing all that there is in the world. When they
looked, instantly they saw all around them, and they contemplated in
turn the arch of heaven and the round face of the earth.
But the Creator and the Maker did not hear this with pleasure. “It
is not well that our creatures, our works say; they know all, the
large and the small,” they said.4
Something had to be done. Humans (and by implication, the spiritual
beings that animate human bodies) needed to have their level of
intelligence reduced. Mankind had to be made more stupid:
“What shall we do with them now? Let
their sight reach only to that which is near; let them see only
a little of the face of the earth! It is not well what
they say. Perchance, are they not by nature simple
creatures of our making? Must they also be Gods?” 5
The Popol Vuh then tells in symbolism what Custodians did to early
Homo sapiens to reduce human intelligence and intellectual vision:
Then the Heart of Heaven blew mist into their eyes,
which clouded their sight as when a mirror is breathed
upon. Their eyes were covered and they could see only
what was close, only that was clear to them.
In this way the wisdom and all the knowledge of the
four men [first Homo sapiens/ . . . were destroyed.6
The above passage echoes the Biblical Adam and Eve story in which
“revolving swords” had been placed to block human access to
important knowledge. It also suggests a Custodial intention that
human beings should never learn about the world beyond the obvious
The Popol Vuh contains another element worth mentioning because it
reflects the “muddling of languages” theme of the Biblical Tower of
Babel story. The Popol Vuh relates that various “Gods” spoke
different languages which the ancient Mayan tribes were compelled to
adopt whenever they fell under the rule of a new “God.” Even in the
New World, humans were broken into different linguistic groups by the
By the time the Spaniards first landed in the Americas in the late
15th century, the Custodial “Gods” were no longer directly visible
in human affairs, and had not been so for centuries. Although UFOs
continued to be observed around the world, people no longer viewed
them as the vehicles of the “Gods.”
The Custodial race assumed a low
profile which made it seem as though they had left the Earth and gone
back home. Unfortunately, they still remained, as the next, and
perhaps most ominous, chapter reveals.
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