The Illuminati have attracted much attention over the past several years, causing them to enter mainstream consciousness. But before discussing them too much, it is important to ask “what are they?”

Unfortunately, answering this question is not as straightforward as some might think. I do not think the vocabulary surrounding them is sufficient to accurately describe who they are. I could deal with this by creating new words to describe them, but this would likely confuse people who are new to the subject. So for now I will have to make due with the existing vocabulary and acknowledge that the word “Illuminati” has multiple definitions.

1st Definition: The Illuminati are a Loosely Organized Religion

This is the broadest definition, and one that many people use when referring to the Illuminati. It has some utility, but its vagueness can also cause an excessive amount of people to be labeled Illuminati.

At its most fundamental level, the Illuminati religion posits that humans are divine beings who have the potential to become gods. Divinity can be achieved through a variety of means, but generally it is accomplished by entering altered states of consciousness. This is commonly referred to as Illumination, enlightenment or transcendence. There are numerous divine states of consciousness, but the most notable one is that known as a “kundalini awakening.” The three most common ways of achieving a kundalini awakening are through yoga, ritualistic sexual intercourse (also known as “sex magick”) and by taking psychedelic drugs.

The Illuminati come in many different denominations, with some of the more notable ones being: Freemasonry, New Age, Satanism, the occult, hermeticism, gnosticism, Sufism, Kabbalah, Paganism, witchcraft and Thelema. Unlike most religions, the Illuminati tend to operate in secret societies and generally provide the public with only a vague understanding of their religion. Some of the more notable examples of these secret societies include: Freemasonry, Ordo Templi Orientis, Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, Illuminates of Thanateros, Argenteum Astreum, Church of Satan, and the Temple of Set.

Note that even using this definition is tricky. Followers of these religions and members of these organizations will commonly deny, sometimes adamantly, that they are affiliated with each other. What makes this even more complicated is that oftentimes the Illuminati will openly admit that they lie to the general public about the true nature of their beliefs.

Considering all the vagueness and deception surrounding this religion, it is not surprising that the general public is so ignorant about the Illuminati. That being said, their existence is relatively easy to prove: walk into the religion section of your local bookstore, there should be an entire aisle dedicated to it. Clearly there is a market for this religion.


The eye atop the pyramid on the back of the US $1 bill is a symbol from the secret language used by the Illuminati.

But there is further proof for the existence of this religion: the Illuminati have a secret language that they use for communication and proselytization. This is not a language in the traditional sense, but rather a combination of symbols, slang, allegory, gestures and numerical code. Followers of this religion use it so extensively and consistently that it is difficult to deny they are at least loosely connected to each other.

2nd Definition: “An Illuminati” are People of a Specific Status Within this Religion

This definition builds off the first one, but instead of labeling all the followers as Illuminati, only people who have achieved a certain level of status are labeled Illuminati. As I said, followers of this religion rarely give a straightforward explanation of their beliefs to the general public. But this lack of transparency oftentimes applies to their own members as well.

Many occult societies have a system of ranks that one must pass through in order to learn more about the religion’s practices and beliefs. The people at the top of the hierarchy are sometimes referred to as “an Illuminati.” According to this definition, there could be numerous Illuminatis spread throughout the religion. In some cases, you could even have a group of people where everybody is an Illuminati over someone else within the group.

3rd Definition: “The Illuminati” Secretly Rule the World

According to this definition, there is a small group of people known as the Illuminati who secretly rule the world with the aim of promoting this religion. Commonly they are thought to have malevolent or selfish intentions, though there are some followers of this religion who simply consider the Illuminati to be misunderstood.


This is only a brief introduction to the Illuminati. I understand that much of this is overly vague and there are no references. But that is because this article does not in itself represent a complete argument. Rather it is a starting point upon which I will base many future arguments. Ultimately I hope to create a series of articles that collectively form a cohesive argument both proving the existence of the Illuminati and revealing the true nature of their beliefs. From there I can begin to explain why they have a level of influence that is foolish for mainstream society to ignore.

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