The Illuminati have ten degrees: seven standard and three mystery degrees. The original degrees were formulated by the first Grand Master of the Illuminati – Pythagoras, the ancient Greek mystic, philosopher and mathematician. His system was based on his cosmological system, which was as much symbolical as real.

 

Pythagoras was the first man to call himself a philosopher – a lover of wisdom – and he was also the first to declare that the earth wasn’t the centre of the universe. Instead, a mystical central fire (not the sun) was put at the centre of the cosmos, thus making this model a forerunner of the Copernican system. The central fire was referred to as the “House of Abraxas” – and represented, symbolically, the home of the True God, the eternal realm of divine light and warmth.

 

Ten heavenly bodies revolved around it: the counter-earth (this was identical to the earth and followed the same orbit, but was diametrically opposite, relative to the central fire, and therefore permanently invisible from the earth), the earth itself, the moon, the sun, the five planets known at the time and the sphere of fixed stars of the celestial plain. Beyond, lay infinite space. The heavenly bodies, moving in perfect circular orbits, created the divine sound known as the Music of the Spheres, which permeated the entire universe but could be heard only by the True God.

 

The Pythagorean Degrees of the Illuminati

Standard degrees

1st: The Heaven of the Fixed Stars.
2nd: Kronos (Saturn). Kronos was the leader of the Titans. (He castrated his father Uranus, thus taking his power from him. He ruled the world during the mythological Golden Age. He was the father of the Olympian gods. He was overthrown by his son Zeus, and he and the other Titans were bound in the underworld.)
3rd: Zeus (Jupiter, Jove). The king of the Olympian gods.
4th: Ares (Mars). The god of war.
5th: Helios (Sol). The sun.
6th: Aphrodite (Venus). The goddess of love and beauty.
7th: Hermes (Mercury). The messenger of the gods.

Mystery Degrees

8th: Selene (Luna). The moon.
9th: Gaia (Terra Mater). The earth.
10th: Antichthon. The counter-earth.

Antichthon is the highest degree because it represents the opportunity for humanity to transform itself beyond recognition. While this earth is corrupt, wicked and fallen, the counter-earth offers the promise of the complete opposite: paradise, free of the malignant influence of the Demiurge and the Old World Order. Antichthon, the counter-earth, is what the earth can and should be.

The Mithraic Degrees of the Illuminati

In later times, the Greek Pythagorean degrees were restyled according to a Roman system. The seven standard degrees became those of Mithraism, a mystery religion closely related to Illumination:

Standard degrees

1st: Corax (the Raven), under the rule of Mercury.
2nd: Nymphus (the Bride), under the rule of Venus.
3rd: Miles (the Soldier), under the rule of Mars.
4th: Leo (the Lion), under the rule of Jupiter.
5th: Perses (the Persian), under the rule of the Moon.
6th: Heliodromus (the Sun Runner), under the rule of the Sun.
7th: Pater (the Father), under the rule of Saturn.

The Mystery Degrees

8th: Minerva (symbolised by an owl - the Owl of Minerva).
9th: Magus (symbolised by the phoenix, the sacred firebird that rises from the ashes).
10th: Deus Absconditus (the Hidden God, Abraxas, symbolised by the Tetraktys).

(The last of the four major Illuminati symbols is the skull and crossbones in honour of Simon Magus. The Greek Sphinx also has special significance.)

These remain the degrees of the Illuminati. The majority of members belong to the standard degrees; the 10th degree is for the 12 members of the Ruling Council only. The identities of the Ruling Council are completely unknown to the basic membership, but at each initiation, one masked member of the Ruling Council is always in attendance and conducts the final part of the ceremony.

There were ten degrees in total because, for Pythagoras, the number 10 was divine. 1, 2, 3 and 4 were also revered because they add up to 10 and they form the divine triangle - the Tetraktys - which symbolized the four elements (earth, air, fire, and water) and, in its totality, also the mystical fifth essence, the Quintessence.

The Tetraktys is: 

It is an equilateral triangle composed of dots in four rows, a visual representation of the equation: 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 = 10. The Tetraktys contains a hexagon and a three-dimensional cube, as shown in the picture. It is a truly extraordinary figure. It also symbolises key musical intervals: 4:3 (the fourth), 3:2 (the fifth) and 2:1 (the octave). If the Tetraktys is extended by adding new rows, up to a total of 36, the 36th "triangular" number is 666: the Number of the Beast in the Christian Book of Revelation. The number 36 has a crucial significance for the Illuminati, as does the Tetraktys extended to order 36. As for the 666th triangular number, this is equal to 222111. When two successive "triangular" numbers are added, the result is a square number e.g. 1 + 3 = 4; 3 + 6 = 9; 6 + 10 = 16; 10 +15 = 25.

Pythagoras, First Grand Master of the Illuminati

Pythagoras was born in 570 BCE on the Greek island of Samos. He was taught how to perform miracles by a mystic called Pherecydes, who first introduced him to the doctrines of the Illuminati. (At this time, the Illuminati did not exist as a formal organisation, but as a loose group of nomadic thinkers and mystics.) Pherecydes instructed Pythagoras on the immortality and transmigration of the human soul, the soul's wanderings in the "underworld", and the purpose of the soul's cycle of reincarnations.

Pherecydes recommended Pythagoras to other members of the Illuminati, amongst whom were Egyptian priests, the most illustrious and learned of teachers in those times. When Pherecydes died, Pythagoras boarded ship and went to Egypt where he was taught secret knowledge, profound mysteries and advanced mathematics by the priests at Heliopolis, Memphis and Thebes. Later, he learned astronomy from the Chaldeans, geometry from the Phoenicians and occult knowledge from the Persian Magi. He also met the prophet Zarathustra (Zoroaster) in Persia. On his travels, he acquired all of the greatest wisdom then available in the world. He was uncontaminated by Judaism, and, as for Christianity and Islam, they did not exist at this time. For people nowadays, it's easy to forget that there was a time when people did not suffer from the warped mindset of Judaism, Christianity and Islam. The world was once free of these horrific religions, and it can be again. According to Christianity, every human being went to hell before the coming of the "Redeemer", Jesus Christ. If he had never come, the whole of humanity would have been condemned to hell. What sort of religion contemplates sending everyone to eternal perdition?

In Croton in southern Italy, Pythagoras founded a school where he taught the secret knowledge he had acquired. Here, the Illuminati first took shape as a formal organisation, with Pythagoras as the first Grand Master. He and the newly initiated members of the Illuminati lived in a community where everything was held in common. There was no private property. Brotherly cooperation was emphasised.

Pythagoras addressed the Illuminati from behind a curtain, so none could see him. Only those who had graduated to the mystery degrees of the Illuminati were admitted into his presence. Those who had attained the mystery grades, the inner circle, were called mathematikoi - the mathematicians - while the outer circle were called the akousmatikoi ("listeners").

Pythagoras developed a secret language (still used by the senior members of the Illuminati), and elaborate numerical codes and symbolic messages. He devised initiation rites and introduced secret symbols and special handshakes. Compasses and set squares, tools of mathematics, were given high prominence as symbols. All of the trademarks of Masonic lodges were already evident here. The Illuminati formally created Freemasonry millennia later, based on these original Pythagorean innovations.  

His students considered Pythagoras supernatural and a demigod. They said, "There are in the universe men and gods and beings like Pythagoras." A biographer called him the "harmonic deity, halfway between gods and men." (The idea of individuals ascending the scale between humanity and divinity is critical to the Illuminati.)

The Italian city of Sybaris was legendary for the opulence and luxury enjoyed by its citizens. This was an Old World Order city par excellence. Pythagoras condemned it as a lazy, corrupt, materialistic society, heedless of the poor, dedicated to making money and contemptuous of philosophy and ideas. The Crotons, rivals of Sybaris, attacked it and destroyed it.  

The Illuminati grew increasingly more influential, but when a man called Chion, a person of "high birth" (i.e. a member of the Old World Order) was refused admission to the Order, he and a gang of thugs burned down the Illuminati's headquarters, killing most of the initiates. Pythagoras escaped, but was pursued, caught and put to death.

Pythagoras is one of the most brilliant and mysterious men in history. He was the first to attempt to bring together reason, mathematics and mysticism, subjects that have preoccupied the Illuminati ever since. One of the treasures of the Illuminati, only ever accessed by the Ruling Council, is an ancient manuscript by Pythagoras. As far as the wider world is concerned, he never wrote anything down.

He considered numbers to be the arche, the most fundamental element of the universe, the true nature of things. Although this sounds like an eccentric idea, no one can doubt that mathematics is deeply embedded in the fabric of the universe. If the universe was not mathematical it would be impossible to make any sense of it. Mathematics is the language of order and patterns. When equations are solved, numbers are what are produced.

In the "clockwork" universe of Laplace, if the positions and motion of every particle in the universe could be determined at one time then all future positions and motions could be calculated. In this sense, the universe could be characterised as a vast matrix of ever-changing numbers describing the dynamical positions of every particle (being moved around by the forces operating on them). The introduction of quantum uncertainty simply changes the complexity of the matrix, but not the underlying numerical basis of this vision of reality. If the universe can be described on a moment to moment basis as an enormous matrix of numbers describing all possible positions of all possible particles, and all the experiences of humanity are coded in those numbers, then Pythagoras's statement is not as strange as it initially sounds to many people. The movie The Matrix famously showed  "reality" as huge arrays of numbers and symbols - machine code - cascading down computer screens, which then had to be translated into the reality with which we are familiar. After a while, this translation became automatic for those looking at the screens. This would have been an image that would instantly have appealed to Pythagoras, except he may have regarded the screens of numbers and symbols as more real than the images of real life derived from them. The code would be the arche, while the decoded images would be secondary and derived, hence less real.

Pythagoras was the person most responsible for the numerology that features heavily in occult thinking. He condemned the visible world - the creation of the Demiurge - as false and illusory. In the classic language of Gnosticism, he said that the heavenly light was broken and obscured in mist and darkness. He had many characteristics in common with St Francis; a love of poverty, despair at the behaviour of privileged elites, and a desire for brotherhood. He was even said to talk to animals, just like St Francis. Men and women were admitted into the Illuminati on equal terms, an exceptional occurrence in those times.

Bertrand Russell said that the vast majority of Plato's philosophy had its roots in Pythagoreanism. Given the impact of Plato on the western world, this shows how important Pythagoras was. He could justly be considered the most influential of all western philosophers. The great tragedy for the world was that it strayed away from Pythagoras, Gnosticism and the Illuminati and instead embraced the evil and idiotic religions of Judaism, Christianity and Islam, plunging us into millennia of horror and despair. But Pythagoras will be reborn, and his message, and that of the Illuminati, will triumph in the end.

Russell says, "The whole conception of an eternal world, revealed to the intellect but not to the senses, is derived from him."

He was also reputed to have the ability to project messages onto the moon for the world to see. Using his own blood, he would write a message on a looking glass, point it at the moon, and the inscription would appear on the moon's disc.

Pythagoras is famous for his theorem regarding right-angled triangles, but that is the least of his remarkable achievements. He taught that each number had its own special attributes:

Number                                                 Attribute
   
      1                monad (unity) the number of reason, the generator of numbers
      2                dyad (diversity, opinion, otherness) first female number
      3                triad (harmony = unity + diversity) first male number
      4                (justice, retribution) squaring of accounts
      5                (marriage) first female + first male
      6                (creation) first female + first male + 1
      ...
      10             (Universe) Tetraktys

The number pair 220 and 284 were an Illuminati recognition code. 220 and 284 are "amicable" numbers. Two numbers are amicable if each is the sum of the proper divisors (that is all the divisors except the number itself) of the other.

The sum of the proper divisors of 220 is 1 + 2 + 4 + 5 + 10 + 11 + 20 + 22 + 44 + 55 + 110 = 284. The sum of the proper divisors of 284 is 1 + 2 + 4 + 71 + 142 = 220.

If an Illuminati member showed a talisman bearing the number 220, the correct response was for another member to show a talisman bearing the number 284. This pair of numbers has become significant in magic, sorcery, astrology and the occult.
 
Other recognition codes were based on so-called Deficient, Perfect and Abundant Numbers. A number is perfect if it is equal to the sum of its proper divisors. 6 is a perfect number (1 + 2 + 3 = 6). A number is deficient if its sum falls short of the number. 8 is deficient (1 + 2 + 4 = 7). A number is abundant if the sum exceeds the number. 12 is abundant (1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 6 = 16).

Each degree of the Illuminati was associated with a particular Deficient, Perfect or Abundant number, and could be used by one member to reveal his rank to another.

These are just a few examples of the complex numerology used by the Illuminati.

Revealed Religions Versus Mystery Religions

The major religions of the world are "revealed". This term has two meanings. One is that God has personally revealed himself to us. A second is that no part of the religion is hidden i.e. the totality of the religion is available to all.

In Christianity, God allegedly became incarnate in the person of Jesus Christ and directly communicated his message to us during the years of his ministry. His teachings are recorded in the New Testament. (One wonders why Jesus Christ didn't bother to write down the precise nature of his religion. Why was he so evasive? Why did he continually resort to strange parables susceptible to multiple interpretations?)

In Judaism, God, in person, allegedly addressed prominent Jews such as Moses and the High Priests. On Mount Sinai, God personally provided Moses with his Ten Commandments and the "oral" Torah i.e. he communicated unmediated with Moses. The words given to Moses were straight from the horse's mouth, so to speak. The oral Torah was later written down by Moses - it was completed on the day of his death - to become the sacred text of the Jews. (One wonders why Yahweh didn't provide a written version of the Torah rather than presenting it orally. Why didn't he appear to everyone rather than just one person? Why did he choose the Jews for this signal honour of being his "Chosen People"? And what did this say for his attitude to everyone else?)

In Islam, the illiterate tribesman Mohammed encountered the Angel Gabriel in a cave and Gabriel then perfectly dictated the Word of Allah to Mohammed, who perfectly recalled every word when he, in turn, dictated to the scribes who produced the first Koran. (One wonders why Allah didn't deal with someone who could read and write rather an illiterate peasant. Muslims think this is a great miracle whereas everyone else thinks it is bizarre, incomprehensible and unbelievable. One also must wonder why Allah didn't provide a holy text directly, rather than using the Angel Gabriel as a dictating machine. And why was Allah so fond of Arabic? Couldn't he provide a Koran in every language? Not too much effort for the Creator of the universe surely.)

In Hinduism, Avatars of the gods appeared periodically on the earth, but again seemed to have great difficulty in clearly communicating their message.

It is an astounding thing that the "old" religions claim to possess the word of God, directly from God, and yet the Torah, New Testament and Koran are amongst the most ambiguous and least persuasive books on earth. "Lord of the Rings" by JRR Tolkein is more credible and consistent. Only people brainwashed from birth could believe in the nonsense spouted in "holy" texts.

For thousands of years, humanity has had direct access to the "Word of God" and yet no one can agree on what it is, and it has caused endless trouble and violence. Can God not communicate effectively? What sort of God is he in that case? What is for sure is that the earth has become no glorious paradise thanks to the holy words of "God". Doesn't the suspicion begin to form that the God of this world has more in common with Satan - exactly as Gnosticism has always taught? It is time to reject the Word of Satan - the Bible, the Torah and the Koran - once and for all.

In Buddhism, there is no God per se, but Buddha himself revealed the entirety of the Buddhist religion. Nothing is hidden from ordinary Buddhists. The trouble with Buddhism is that it simply doesn't amount to very much of anything.

With "mystery" religions, the situation is entirely different. The complete religion is not revealed to everyone. There are profound secrets, and the promise of startling, life-altering revelations. Those who want to know more must be initiated into the religion, and they may not be permitted to join in the first place. If the initiate desires to know the ultimate secrets of the religion, he must graduate through various degrees, involving increasing complexity and greater and heavier demands on him, to reach the highest level.

Mystery religions do not provide a convenient holy text to all and sundry. Mystery religions do not provide the answers to everyone: the answers must be worked for, and are strictly reserved for those who show most dedication and commitment. Mystery religions involve transcendental ceremonies that often assault the senses in deliberately disturbing ways. Mystery religions take initiates out of their normal selves and ordinary lives, out of their comfort zones, and them plunge them into an arena where epiphanies are possible.

Mystery religions have nothing in common with revealed religions. Mystery religions are about the truth, about ultimate transformation, about opening your eyes to all of the potential of the universe.

Revealed religions, on the contrary, are about old men in beards ordering you to bow and kneel and pray to a God from whom you are entirely alienated. Nothing is more tedious and more soul-destroying, than revealed religion.

Revealed religion is a mockery of true religion. It's time for humanity to reject revealed religions which have done so much to kill off spirituality and to promote consumerism and materialism.

"What was once done 'for the love of God' is now done for the love of money."  

Nietzsche

Only mystery religion can restore humanity's sense of the divine. Illumination, with an unbroken ancestry in the mystery religions of the past, is the religion that will replace all others.