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The Thule Society II

Secret Instructions of the Jesuits

The Secret Instructions were first discovered during the 30 Years' War when the Duke of Brunswick plundered the Jesuit's college at Paderborn in Westphalia and made a present of their library to the Capuchins of the same town. Soon after reprints and translations appeared all over Europe.

The text of the Secret Instructions of the Society of Jesus reproduced here was found beneath the pallet on an adobe bed in a cottage in the Andes Mountains of Peru about a century ago. Students of the Incas recall that prior to the expedition of the National Geographic Magazine under Hiram Gingham, in 1911, archeologists from European countries probed the ruins of this people, one of the greatest civilizations in history.

In 1870 a French archeologist slipped unobtrusively into the office of the Secretary of the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry in San Francisco, California. He had been sent into the remote recesses of the Andes, where Pizarro and his army had conquered the Incas more than three centuries before. He had rented a room in a tiny village. This he used as a base of his operations. To this spot he returned periodically to rest from the dangerously high altitudes and to write his reports for shipment back to France. While he was away, the family frequently rented the same room to overnight guests. One of these happened to be a Jesuit official. On his departure he forgot a little book which he had hidden under the mattress. The French archeologist accidentally found it. It was the Secret Instructions of the Society of Jesus—the top classified manual of procedure for the trusted leaders of the Jesuit Order. It was in Latin and bore the seal, signature and attestation of the General and Secretary of the Order in Rome.

For the next few days the Frenchman labored furiously translating the work in stenographic notes into French. He then replaced the book and left. The Jesuit returned in a few days inquiring nervously about his little black packet. He also wanted to know if anyone had occupied the room since his departure. On learning of the archeologist he began a search so relentless that the Frenchman had to leave Peru. He finally reached San Francisco and entrusted his precious but dangerous burden to Edwin A. Sherman, the Secretary of the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry in California. Mr. Sherman included the Secret Instructions in his book The Engineer Corps of Hell published in 1882. For several years Edwin Sherman was the Masonic Historian of California. He was highly esteemed for his great accuracy and dependability.



1. To capture the will of the inhabitants of a country, it is very important to manifest the intent of the Society, in the manner prescribed in the regulations in which it is said, that the Society must labor with such ardor and force for the salvation of their neighbor as for themselves. For the better inducement of this idea, the most opportunely that we practice the most humble offices, visiting the poor, the afflicted, and the imprisoned. It is very convenient to confess with much promptness, and to hear the confessions, showing indifference, without teasing the penitents; for this, the most notable inhabitants will admire our fathers and esteem them; for the great charity they have for all, and the novelty of the subject.

2. To have in mind that it is necessary to ask with religious modesty, the means for exercising the duties of the Society, and that it is needful to procure and acquire benevolence, principally of the secular ecclesiastics, and of persons of authority, that may be conceived necessary.

3. When called to go to the most distant places, where alms are to be received, they are to be accepted, no matter how small they may be, after having marked out the necessities of ourselves. Notwithstanding, it will be very convenient at the moment to give those alms to the poor, for the edification of those who do not have an exact understanding of the Society; and, but we must in advance be more liberal with ourselves.

4. All must labor as if we were inspired by the same spirit; and each one must study to acquire the same styles, with the object of uniformity among so great a number of persons, edifying the whole; those who do the contrary must be expelled as pernicious.

5. In a beginning it is not convenient to purchase property; but in case they can be found, some good sites may be bought, saying that they are to belong to other persons, using the names of some faithful friends, who will guard the secret. The better to make our poverty apparent, the property nearest our college must belong to colleges the most distant, that we can prevent the princes and magistrates from ever knowing that the income of the Society has a fixed point.

6. We must not ourselves go out to reside to form colleges, except to the rich cities; for in this we must imitate Christ, who remained in Jerusalem; and as he alone, passed by the less considerable populations.

7. We must obtain and acquire of the widows all the money that we can, presenting ourselves at repeated times to their sight our extreme necessity.

8. The Superior over each province is the one to whom we must account with certainty, the income of the same; but the amount to the treasurer at Rome, it is, and must always be, an impenetrable mystery.

9. It is for us to preach and say in all parts and in all conversations, that we have come to teach the young and aid the people; and this without interest in any single species and without exception of persons, and that we are not so onerous to the people as other religious orders.



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1. It is necessary to do all that is possible to gain completely the attentions and affections of princes and persons of the most consideration; for that, who, being on the outside, but in advance, all of them will be constituted our defenders.

2. As we have learned by experience that princes and potentates are generally inclined to the favor of the ecclesiastics, when these disseminate their odious actions, and when they give an interpretation that they favor, as is to be noted among the married, contract with their relations or allies; or in other similar things; assembling much with them, to animate those who may be found in this case, saying to them that we confide in the assurance of the exemptions, that by intervention of us fathers, which the Pope will concede, if he is made to see the causes, and will present other examples of similar things, exhibiting at the same time the sentiments that we favor, under the pretext of the common good and THE GREATER GLORY OF GOD that is the object of the Society.

3. If at this same assembly the prince treats of doing something, that will not be agreeable to all the great men, for which we are to stir up and investigate, meanwhile, counseling others to conform with the prince, without ever descending to treat of particulars, for fear there may not be a successful issue of the matter, for which the Society will be imputed blame; and for this, if this action shall be disapproved, there will be advertences presented to the contrary that may be absolutely prohibited and put in jeopardy, the authority of some of the fathers, of whom it can be said with certainty, that they have not had notice of the Secret Instructions; for that, it can be affirmed with an oath, that the calumny to the Society, is not true in respect to that which is imputed to it.

4. To gain the good will of Princes, it will be very convenient to insinuate with skill; and for third persons, that we fathers, are a means to discharge honorable and favorable duties in the courts of other kings and princes, and more than any one else in that of the Pope. By this means we can recommend ourselves and the Society; for the same, no one must be charged with this commission but the most zealous persons and well versed in our institute.

5. Aiming especially to bring over the will of the favorites of princes and of their servants, by means of presents and pious offices, that they may give faithful notice to us fathers of the character and inclinations of the princes and great men. Of this manner the Society can gain with facility as much to one as to others.

6. The experience we have had, has made us acquainted with the many advantages that have been taken by the Society of its intervention in the marriages of the House of Austria, and of those which have been effected in other kingdoms, France, Poland, and in various duchies. Forasmuch assembling, proposing with prudence, selecting choice persons who may be friends and families of the relatives, and of the friends of the Society.

7. It will be easy to gain the princesses, making use of their valets; by that, coming to feed and nourish with relations of friendship, by being located at the entrance in all parts, and thus become acquainted with the most intimate secrets of the familiars.

8. In regard to the direction of the consciences of great men, we confessors must follow the writers who concede the greater liberty of conscience. The contrary of this is to appear too religious; for that they will decide to leave others and submit entirely to our direction and counsels.

9. It is necessary to make reference to all the merits of the Society; to the princes and prelates, and to as many as can lend much aid to the Society, after having shown the transcendency of its great privileges.

10. Also, it will be useful to demonstrate, with prudence and skill, such ample power which the Society has, to absolve, even in the reserved cases, compared with that of other pastors and priests; also, that of dispensing with the fasts, and of the rights which they must ask and pay, in the impediments of marriage, by which means many persons will recur to us, whom it will be our duty to make agreeable.

11. It is not the less useful to invite them to our sermons, assemblies, harangues, declamations, etc., composing odes in their honor, dedicating literary works or conclusions; and if we can for the future, give dinners and greetings of divers modes.

12. It will be very convenient to take to our care the reconciliation of the great, in the quarrels and enmities that divide them; then by this method we can enter, little by little, into the acquaintance of their most intimate friends and secrets; and we can serve ourselves to that party which will be most in favor of that which we present.

13. If there should be some one at the service of a monarch or prince, and he were an enemy of our Society, it is necessary to procure well for ourselves better than for others, making him a friend, employing promises, favors, and advances, which shall be in proportion to the same monarch or prince.

14. No one shall recommend to a prince any one, nor make advances to any who have gone out from us, being outside of our Society, and in particular to those who voluntarily verified, for yet when they dissimulate they will always maintain an inextiguishable hatred to the Society.

In fine, each one must procure and search for methods to increase the affection and favor of princes, of the powerful, and of the magistrates of each population, that whenever occasion is offered to support, we can do much with efficacy and good faith, in benefiting ourselves, though contrary to their relations, allies and friends.



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1. The care consigned to us, that we must do all that is possible, for to conquer the great; but it is also necessary to gain their favor to combat our enemies.

2. It is very conducive to value their authority, prudence and counsels, and induce them to despise wealth, at the same time that we procure gain and employ those that can redeem the Society; tacitly valuing their names, for acquisition of temporal goods if they inspire sufficient confidence

3. It is also necessary to employ the ascendant of the powerful, to temper the malevolence of the persons of a lower sphere and of the rabble against our Society.

4. It is necessary to utilize, whenever we can, the bishops, prelates and other superior ecclesiastics, according to the diversity of reason, and the inclination we manifest.

5. In some points it will be sufficient to obtain of the prelates and curates, that which it is possible to do, that their subjects respect the society; and that obstructing the exercise of its functions among those who have the greatest power, as in Germany, Poland, etc. It will be necessary to exhibit the most distinguished attentions for that, mediating its authority and that of the princes, monasteries, parishes, priorates, patronates, the foundations of the churches and the pious places, can come to our power. Because we can with more facility where the Catholics will be found mixed with heretics. It is necessary to make such prelates see the utility and merit that we have in all this, and that never will they have so much valuation from the priests, friars, and for the future from the faithful. If making these changes, it is necessary to publicly praise their zeal, although written, and to perpetuate the memory of their actions.

6. For this it is necessary to labor, to the end, that the prelates will place in the hands of us fathers, as confessors and counsellors; and if they aspire to more elevated positions in the Court of Rome, we must unite in their favor and aid their pretensions with all our forces, and by means of our influence.

7. We must be watchful that when the bishops are instituting principal colleges arid parochial churches, that the faculties are taken from the Society, and placed in both vicarious establishments, with the charge of cures, and that the Superior of the Society to be, that all the government of these churches shall pertain to us, and that the parishioners shall be our subjects, of the method that all can be placed in them.

8. Where there are those of the academies who have been driven out from us, and are contrary; where the Catholics or the heretics obstruct our installation, we will compound with the prelates, and make ourselves the owners of the first cathedrals; for thus shall we make them to know the necessities of the Society.

9. Over all, we must be very certain to procure the protection and affection of the prelates of the Church, for the cases of beatification or canonization of ourselves; in whose subjects convened further, to obtain letters from the powerful and of the princes, that the decisions may be promptly attained in the Catholic Court.

10. If it shall be accounted that the prelates or magnates should send commissioned representatives, we must put forth all ardor, that no other priests, who are in dispute with us, shall be sent; for the reason, that they shall not communicate their animadversion, discrediting us in the cities and provinces we inhabit; and that if they pass by other provinces and cities, where there are colleges, they will be received with affection and kindness, and be so splendidly treated as a religious modesty will permit.



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1. Those of us who may be directed to the princes and illustrious men, of the manner in which we must appear before them, with inclination unitedly to the greater glory of God, obtaining—with its austerity of conscience, that the same princes are persuaded of it; for this direction we must not travel in a principle to the exterior or political government, but gradually and imperceptibly.

2. Forasmuch there will be opportunity and conducive notices at repeated times, that the distribution of honors and dignities in the Republic is an act of justice; and that in a great manner it will be offending God, if the princes do not examine themselves and cease carrying their passions, protesting to the same with frequency and severity, that we do not desire to mix in the administration of the State; but when it shall become necessary to so express ourselves thus, to have your weight to fill the mission that is recommended. Directly that the sovereigns are well convinced of this, it will be very convenient to give an idea of the virtues that may be found to adorn those that are selected for the dignities and principal public changes; procuring then and recommending the true friends of the Society; notwithstanding, we must not make it openly for ourselves, but by means of our friends who have intimacy with the prince that it is not for us to talk him into the disposition of making them.

3. For this watchfulness our friends must instruct the confessors and preachers of the Society near the persons capable of discharging any duty, that over all, they must be generous to the Society; they must also keep their names, that they may insinuate with skill, and upon opportune occasions to princes, well for themselves or by means of others.

4. The preachers and confessors will always present themselves so that they must comport with the princes, lovable and affectionate, without ever shocking them in sermons, nor in particular conversations, presenting that which rejects all fear, and exhorting them in particular to faith, hope and justice.

5. Never receive gifts made to any one in particular, but that for the contrary; but picture the distress in which the Society or college may be found, as all are alike; having to be satisfied with assigning each one a room in the house, modestly furnished; and noticing that your garb is not over nice; and assist with promptness to the aid and counsel of the most miserable persons of the palace; but that you do not say it of them, but only those who have agreed to serve the powerful.

6. Whenever the death occurs of any one employed in the palace, we must take care of speaking with anticipation, that they fail in the nomination of a successor, in their affection for the Society; but giving no appearance to cause suspicion that it was the intent of usurping the government of the prince; for which, it must not be from us that it is said; take a part direct; but assembling of faithful or influential friends who may be found in a position of rousing the hate of one and another until they become inflamed.



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1. It is necessary to help with valor these persons, and manifest in their due time to the princes and lords that are always ours, and being constituted in power, that our Society contains essentially the perfection of all the other orders, with the exception of singing and manifesting an exterior of austerity in the mode of life and in dress; and that if in some points they excel the communities of the Society, this shines with greater splendor in the Church of God.

2. We must inquire into and note the defects of the other fathers (non-Jesuit priests), and when we find them, we must divulge them among our faithful friends, as condoling over them; we must show that such fathers do not discharge with certainty, that we do ourselves the functions, that some and others recommend.

3. It is necessary that the fathers of our Society oppose with all their power the other fathers who intend to found houses of education to instruct the youths among the populations where ours are found teaching with acceptation and approval; and it will be very convenient to indicate our projects to princes and magistrates, that such people will excite disturbances and commotions if they are not prohibited from teaching; and that in the last result, the damage will fall upon the educated, by being instructed by a bad method, without any necessity; posting them that the Society is sufficient to teach the youth. In case the fathers bear letters of the Pontificate, or recommendations from the Cardinals, we must work in opposition to them, making the princes and great men to point out to the Pope the merits of the Society and its intelligence for the pacific instruction of the youths, to which end, we must have and obtain certifications of the authorities upon our good conduct and sufficiency.

4. Having notwithstanding to form duties, our fathers in displaying singular proofs of our virtue and erudition, making them to exercise the alumni (graduates) in their studies in methods of functions, scholars of diversion, capable of drawing applause, making for supposition, these representations in the presence of the great magistrates and concurrence of other classes.

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