Wednesday, April 11, 2007


During the next several weeks my schedule is going to be unpredictable beginning with tomorrow morning's chemo. Time for research will probably be limited. One of the commenters in this blog, Susanna, has ferreted out some connecting links that I want to share during this time with her permission.

Let me first begin with a quotation taken from the cover page of Ad Majorem Dei Glorium, Winter 2006/2007, a publication of Roman Catholic Faithful, Inc.:

How many children will be sacrificed by this self-serving, corrupt hierarchy before the Pope takes action?

I post that because it is a question nagging at my mind as well. Stephen Brady writes about clergy sexual abuse primarily, and homosexuality in the priesthood. I would expand the accusation to include doctrinal heresy as well. My disillusion with Benedict XVI grows daily. The man who looked like our salvation at last is proving himself to be a reconciler, a "Papa" who does not discipline any more than his predecessor. He has many admirable points to recommend him. Governance does not appear to be one of them, and so our sorrow continues unabated.

Turning to the Polish poet Mickiewicz, a poet who captured the mind and heart of persecuted Poland during the partition, and a poet who captured the mind and heart of Karol Wojtyla, John Paul II according to George Weigel, WITNESS TO HOPE: THE BIOGRAPHY OF POPE JOHN PAUL II. Weigel is describing the mind of the young Wojtyla. He writes that there were

several key ideas in Polish Romanticism's distinctive view of Polish history: history had a spiritual core; the deterioration of its traditional national virtues had caused Poland's political collapse; reestablishing Poland independence requied recovering those virtues as the foundation of a new Polish state. Karol Wojtyla deepened his understanding of this singular way of reading history in his adolescent encounter with the great poet/dramatists of Polish Romanticism including Adam Mickiewicz, Juliusz Slowacki, and Cyprian Kamil Norwid.

Mickiewicz (1789-1855)--poet, playwright, and political activist--was the defining exponent of Polish Romanticism...
(p. 34)

Susanna has found some evidence that Mickiewicz was a Martinist Mason:

Mickiewicz, Martinist Mason

In effect, the relations with Towianski were also of an occult type, or rather Masonic. Was Mickewicz a Mason? From the beginning, in 1817, we see that he founded the secret society, the Philomaths (Towarzystwo filomatow). In 1820, he joined another secret society, the Philarethes, which he speaks of in the third part of his 1833 book, Dziady (Ancestors). Alas, I don’t know if the Philarethes have something to do with the Masonic lodges called the Philalethes. (21) Whatever the case may be, these Polish secret societies were the replica (and often the ally) of the Russian secret societies---a type of Slavic Carbonarism---which would give rise to the 1825 Decembrist revolt, the Tzarist government had recognized the hand of Masonry, and it is precisely because of this situation, that it was made illegal in Russia. (22) To support the suspicion that the secret societies to which the young Mickiewicz belonged were not Masonic, a meeting will lead him to Martinism: the meeting with Oleszkiewick. "No one would have as strong an influence on him as the Pole, Josef Oleszkiewick, painter, mystic, disciple of Saint-Martin, and who would be the first to initiate Mickiewicz to the most profound religious experiences of his life." (23) So it is that the Voltarian, Mickiewicz, became a Martinist, from rationalist to "mystic;" in 1836, he published Zdania I uwagi (Feelings and observations), a collection of quotes from the works of Böhme.(24), Silesius and Saint-Martin. (25) With Saint-Martin, we are amid fullblown Masonry, and even full blown Jewish Cabalism! It is in this esoteric environment, well established before the his affiliation with Towianski’s movement, that Mickiewicz’ thought becomes bogged down in the mud, "Strongly touched in his youth by the mystique of the secret societies---de Lubac must admit ---by Böhme with whom he fell in love in Dresden in 1832 (26), by the visions of Frederick Wanner, by Swedenborg, (27)by Baader and by Saint-Martin whom he had read in Paris in 1833, but also by Catherine Emmerich…and by the great mystics of the Christian tradition, above all Denys (who he tried to translate into Polish), he resembled Joseph de Maistre, who would be closer to the sources of popular inspiration, and to Lammenais who would remain faithful." (p. 245) Surely, the more Lubac tries to excuse Mickiewicz, the worse it involuntarily becomes, so much so that he makes clear the place occupied by Mickiewicz among the most dangerous thinkers of "Masonic-Christian" esotericism.

Her source is a "Sodalitium" article titled "Karol, Adam, Jacob" by M. Abbe Francesco Ricossa. It's a source I have referred to in the past, as I found a copy of it in my file. A source I had forgotten about.

I'm sure this source has been discredited by those who wish this information would disappear. The author cites the work of Father deLubac and Rocco Buttiglione as his source, but the specific books cited in the footnotes are not given, unfortunately.

Next Susanna provides an interesting comment about Towianski, of whom Mickiewicz was a follower, and another member of the Paris occult revival:

Closer in spirit to Mickiewicz was the curious figure of Andrzej Towianski, a mystagogue and defrocked priest, who played a disproportionately large role in the spiritual life of the Polish Great Emigration in Paris in the 1840s. Towianski had his own ideas about the Jews and Polish-Jewish relations, and like Mickiewicz also thought in idealized terms. In Towianski's view, the long history of coexistence of Poles and Jews meant that the fate of the two peoples was intertwined. Each could nurture and fulfill the other for the greater future glory of Poland. But unlike Mickiewicz, Towianski posited the symbiosis of Poles and Jews on the Jew's acceptance of Christianity. This desideratum, however, is advanced by Towiasnki in the idiom of mystical enlightenment. It is sincere, fervent, and never strident or contemptuous.

The source is an article titled "The Jew in Polish and Russian Literatures" by Harold B. Segel. It appeared in "The Sarmatian Review", January 2002.

Lastly, the following claim that Mickiewicz's mother may have been a member of a Frankist family:

Mickiewicz's mother, Barbara Majewska. is reputed to have been a descendant of a Frankist family. The Frankists were members of a Jewish religious sect founded by J.L. Frank in 1755. Ostracized by both rabbinical and secular authorities, the Frankists found a patron in the bishop of the Lwów-Kamieniec region, bishop M. Dembowski, who offered them protection in exchange for conversion to Christianity. Thus, Jews from the Frankist sect massively converted to Christianity, yet many secretly continued to practice their religion. Records have been found indicating that among the converts was a Majewski family. As Mickiewicz himself used the phrase "z matki obcej" ([born] from a foreign mother) in title autobiographical section of his drama Dziady (The Forefathers Eve) the Jewish origin of his mother is quite plausible. Such critics as Janina Maurer of the University of Kansas and Samuel Scheps of France find further corroboration of this theory in the fact that Mickiewicz married a woman who was also from a Frankist family, that he represented Jewish characters in a very positive light ( e.g.. Jankiel, the patriotic Jew, in Mickiewicz's masterpiece Pan Tadeusz), and that toward the end of his life Mickiewicz was actively involved in raising funds for and organizing the Jewish legion. In his political writings, moreover, Mickiewicz repeatedly referred to the Bible (a rather rare tendency among Catholic writers) and compared Poland's martyrdom and the dispersion of Poles after the November 1830 uprising to the suffering of the Jews and the Jewish diaspora.

This article comes from the University of Buffalo's Info Poland website.

Frankists were followers of Jacob Frank. The Awareness Center, a Jewish Coalition Against Sexual Abuse/Assault, describes Jacob Frank this way:

Jacob Frank and his followers went so far as to engage in orgies and incest in order to begin the Messianic era, a time in which all that was forbidden would supposedly be permitted. Condemned by the leading rabbis of his day, Frank sought refuge in Catholicism. As in the case of the Shabbateans (the followers of Shabbetai Zvi), some of Frank's disciples continued to believe that he would reappear as the Messiah, but, of course, he did not. Once again, false messianism took its toll in lost hopes and despair.

Would Poland's poet Mickiewicz also believe in the Frankist approach to salvation?

Wikipedia offers some comments about Mickiewicz's state of mind:

n 1832 Mickiewicz left Rome for Paris, where his life was for some time spent in poverty and unhappiness. He had married a Polish lady, Celina Szymanowska (her parents came from Jewish Frankist families), who became insane. In 1840 he was appointed to the newly founded chair of Slavic languages and literature in the College de France, a post which he was especially qualified to fill, as he was now the chief representative of Slavic literature[citation needed], Alexander Pushkin having died in 1837. He was, however, only destined to hold it for a little more than three years, his last lecture having been given on May 28, 1844. His mind had become more and more disordered under the influence of religious mysticism.

He had fallen under the influence of a strange mystical philosopher Andrzej Towiański. His lectures became a medley of religion and politics, and thus brought him under the censure of the government.

This is the writer that influenced John Paul II, an influential member of the Paris occult revival. Webb writes:

In no part of the territory absorbed by Russia was occultism so combined with nationalism as in the Lithuanian town of Wilno. Here, during the period 1820-22, a young mystagogue called Thomas Zan obtained a huge success among a student population already riddled with secret societies for his theories deriving from occult Masonry and Mesmerism. Zan's circle, known as the "Radiants," held to magical theories of correspondence, promoted by the adoption of Masonic ritual among revolutionary groups, and professed a stern code of moral virtue. The triumph of the Radiants was to stage a series of revolutionary and mystical happenings, at which Zan, the Arch-Radiant, would harangue his disciples on moral rectitude and the theory of Radiation. This was followed by mutual embracing on the part of his audience, for ceremonial drinking of milk, and a day of bucolic festivity. The fervor excited by these demonstrations of brotherly love found other outlets in nationalist activities. There was in fact no conspiracy, but through a series of circumstances one appeared to the authorities to exist. There were investigations and a large number of students were imprisoned. Among these were Zan himself, and Adam Mickiewicz who had been one of his closest friends.

Presumably in the hope of making a good Muscovite of the refractory Pole, the Russians deported Mickiewicz to St. Petersburg. This had no more effect than his imprisonment in keeping the young poet from the dangerous fruit of illuminism. When the students had been in prison (1823-4), Thomas Zan had undergone ecstatic visionary states which greatly impressed Mickiewicz. In St. Petersburg he fell under the influence of his fellow Pole, the artist, poet, and prophet Joseph Olesciewicz, who was during this period Grand Master of the Martinist Order in Russia, and from whom Mickiewicz learned the Cabala. Thus, when he left Russia, Mickiewicz carried with him a body of Traditional knowledge, acquired through his membership of an underground where rejected knowledge and rejected politics were one. His wanderings do not concern us until his meeting with Towianski in Paris in 1841.

Andrei Towianski was born a Lithuanian, and like Mickiewicz studied at the University of Wilno. The circles in which he moved have been described as a "mad-house." His connections with the mystical element among the students are proved by his affiliation of a society to which he belonged to a Lodge of occult Masonry. But he escaped imprisonment or deportation, and calmly entered the legal profession. In 1832 he suddenly stopped practicing and travelled to St. Petersburg, where he drank deep of Martinist doctrines at the same sources as Mickiewicz. From Russia he went to Dresden, the center from which Polish occult Masonry had been derived. He returned for a short while to Poland, where he conceived the idea that he had a religious mission, and was called to go West. Towianski set off for Paris, fortified by the blessing of the Archbishop of Poznan.
(James Webb, THE OCCULT UNDERGROUND, pp 250-25l)

Does this sound like solid Catholic influence on the man who was to become the future pope of the Roman Catholic Church?

Frankists practiced a kind of sex magic. Paris occultists practiced sex magic. Priests in the Roman Catholic Church practiced some sort of sex ceremonies with adolescent boys. Bishops in the Roman Catholic Church covered up for these deviant priests. The pope of the Roman Catholic Church, who had been influenced by Mickiewicz, let them. The current pope of the Roman Catholic Church has abandoned his strict watchdog role and opted for a conciliatory role that also does not govern and discipline.

Lord save us from our leaders.

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