By Jonny Lupsha, Wondrium Staff Writer
A diary once held by a secret society may point to a Nazi treasure cache, Live Science reported. The diary mentions an abandoned well deep beneath a Polish palace that may hold billions in solid gold. Secret societies played a part in Hitler’s rise.
According to the Live Science article, the diary that gives the location of the gold was written under the pen name Michaelis and was only recently revealed by a secret society. “For decades after the war, the Michaelis diary was kept secret, hidden away in the town of Quedlinburg, Germany,” the article said. “It was in the possession of a Masonic lodge that has existed as a secret society for more than 1,000 years and counted elite Nazi officers among its members during the Third Reich.
“One member, allegedly, was ‘Michaelis,’ who controlled Nazi transport in southwestern Poland.”
Last year, the article said, the diary was gifted to Poland by the lodge as part of an apology for World War II. Though the treasure is rare, secret societies were commonly a part of Nazi Germany.
Liebenfels and List
The rise of German mysticism began after Germany’s 1871 unification. Many people sought to unite Germany under one culture and mythology.
“Two such men were the racial theorist Jörg Lanz von Liebenfels and the occultist Guido von List,” said Dr. Richard B. Spence, Professor of History at the University of Idaho. “Liebenfels and List fathered small secret societies devoted to Germanic racial mysticism. Liebenfels called it ‘ariosophy,’ meaning ‘Wisdom of the Aryans.’ Others called it the Völkisch movement.”
Dr. Spence said that Liebenfels imagined that Aryans were a race that were spawned by god-like aliens, and that surviving Aryans were the closest people generationally to these aliens. In accordance with this line of thinking, Liebenfels formed a secret brotherhood in 1908 called Ordo Novi Templi, which translates to “New Templars.” He published a magazine that reflected these beliefs and it was read by a young Adolf Hitler.
“Guido von List yearned for nothing less than the resurrection of Germanic paganism complete with the worship of warrior gods like Wotan, and the use of magical runes and symbols,” Dr. Spence said. “Among those symbols was the swastika, a potent symbol in many cultures. List’s teachings spawned a whole constellation of secret societies.”
Plans within Plans
Dr. Spence said that List formed two influential secret societies himself. One was the Reichshammerbund, or “Reich Hammer League.” The other, which was actually a secret society within the Reichshammerbund, was Germanenorden, which means “German Order.” Adding to the complexity, there was a secret order within the Germanenorden as well, which was known as the Council of Seven, whose identities were unknown to the group.
“This ‘nesting doll’ pattern is a common among secret societies,” Dr. Spence said. “These Ariosophist societies weren’t large—they probably had no more than a few thousand members in a nation of over 60 million—and they had little influence on the wider German public. But within these brotherhoods, the seeds of Nazism were waiting for the right conditions to grow.”
These conditions, Dr. Spence said, included World War I, which wrought havoc among the secret societies’ elder members and made room for younger and more extreme members of the German military.
“The war brutalized and radicalized millions of men—of them being Corporal Hitler.”
Dr. Richard B. “Rick” Spence contributed to this article. Dr. Spence is Professor of History at the University of Idaho, where he has taught since 1986. He holds a Ph.D. from the University of California, Santa Barbara (1981), and taught there as a visiting assistant professor from 1981 to 1985.