The Secret World: Season 2
“It’s all about power.
Grabbing it, keeping it, using it. Power is our currency. Our DNA. Our god. We control the world. We provide the blueprint and we give the instructions. We’re the people in grainy photos on grassy knolls. We’re the shadowy faces in smoky backrooms and darkened board rooms. We’re right here, hiding in plain sight, buying and selling favors. Blackmail, treason, deceit, these are our stock and trade. We work the magic of the drunken evenings with senators and chiefs of staff. We shake down demons and negotiate with sorcerers. We have stocks in hell, and compromising photos of angels. We use any means necessary regardless of the cost because the world is a bad place, and you can either do or get done.
We’re the Illuminati, and we’re not done.”
The Eye and the Pyramid, the New World Order, the Majestic 12, MKULTRA, Delta Green, Skull and Bones, Cicada 3301, the Illuminated Ones, the Enlightened. Many names and many faces, for one organization and one principle; the worship of success. The desire for three things above all else: power, money, respect.
In contrast to the Templars are the Illuminati, arising out of ancient Egypt, the Children of the Eye and the Pyramid. The illuminated ones are ever young despite their hoary origin, constantly reinventing themselves, the cabal dying out and being reborn over and over throughout time. From Egypt and Pharaoh’s fall they moved to Europe and Rome, fighting with the Purple People and with the Old Lion. In Europe they lasted until the Templar, tired of their meddling, hurled them across the sea, into the New World, where as Freemasons and America’s Founding Fathers they built themselves a nation, a citadel from which to rule the world.
And then they died out, suddenly and mysteriously.
Their current heirs, the Illuminati of today, were born in the post World War boom, as the power of the corporation and the conglomerate accelerated and flourished. They grew so powerful they could breach the veil between the normal world and the real world, the Secret World. And what they saw amidst the darkness and the strangeness was a great opportunity.
The cabal formed slowly but surely; they had massive material resources and reserves, the U.S. government in their pocket, and they had the corpse of the Freemason’s empire to cannibalize. They gained occult secrets through hidden experiments by shadowy government organizations puppeted through blackmail and bribery, rifled through the tombs and labyrinths of the old school Illuminati, the Freemasons, and bought the confidence and knowledge of defectors and freelance sorcerers. This amassed into a massive enterprise with stocks in hell, compromising photos of angels, and a whisper in every ear of government.
The Illuminati have one goal: power and control. The supernatural must be tamed, controlled, and eventually commodified, just like the natural world was. They don’t intend to sell Necronomicons in Barnes and Nobles or anything, but they do intend to monopolize all the utilitarian and profitable opportunities that anima and the Secret World provide. They are scientific and experimental, but they are also subtle. They prefer to remain in the shadows, carefully manipulating others through the influence of guilty consciences and golden promises. Social manipulation and misinformation are their calling cards, often keeping the dirty work at a plausibly deniable distance.
That doesn’t mean that the Illuminati is afraid of a fight, or doesn’t have real magical mojo. They just know the advantages of soft power, and apply them fully. Their magic is the New School, often digitally oriented and iPhone compatible. They don’t put much faith in tradition or ritual, and see no profit in ideals.
To be a member of the Illuminati is to have great resources at your fingertips, even moreso than the Templar, but at a price. Nothing is for free, and every members of the Illuminati is always maneuvering for more: more knowledge, more power, more secrets. Everything is transactional with the Illuminati, all favors have to be repaid, and you always have to be careful that your allies don’t see more gain in harming you than in helping you.