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WWII and the Occult


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Ian Topham's picture
Ian Topham
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There are lots of books out there concerning Hitler, the Nazi's and the occult. I also remember hearing or reading about a coven of witches in the New Forest that attempted to oppose the Nazi black magic and keep Britain safe from it.

Does anyone else know of wartime occult links?

Matt.H
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The link between the Nazis

The link between the Nazis and the occult isn't something I've looked into - I know theyre linked to the ark of the covenent etc, but was the occult a serious preoccupation of theirs or more of a promotional tool?

Ian Topham's picture
Ian Topham
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There was a story about

There was a story about Aliester Crowley being used to interrogate Hess. The following link shows he never did meet Hess and his offer for help was turned down, much to the annoyance of Ian Fleming (007). It doesn't however confirm that the Nazi's were interested in the occult.  Here.

Mysteryshopper
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There was certainly a

There was certainly a semi-religious element to nazism. I didn't appreciate this until I happened on an area of Munich which had been the nazi headquarters in the 1930s. They don't mention it much in the guide books which is why I 'happened' on it. Anyway, they had what they referred to as 'temples' there and shrines to 'martyrs'.

Mauro
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The Nazi party

The Nazi party as a whole was not interested in the occult. A few high ranking members were quite obsessed with it, though. Among these high ranking party members the most prominent was Heinrich Himmler, the infamous SS commander-in-chief.
It's widely renown that Hitler, who was a deeply materialistic character and did not believe in horoscopes, ghosts or anything supernatural, frequently and harshly reprimanded those hierarchs who "wasted their time" consulting astrologers or meditating around round tables.
A bit of history first. After the Nazi party came into power after the general election of 1933, an internal purge took place in 1934. Widely known as "The Night of the Long Knives" or "Operation Hummingbird" it resulted in the dessolution of the powerful SA corps and the death of its violent charismatic leader, Ernst Rohm. Heinrich Himmler and his SS carried out the operation quickly an efficently and, being regarded as much more political reliable than the SA, were given both a large share the SA confiscated properties and more resources as a reward.
The SS, a previous second-tier Nazi organization, found themselves flooded with money and resources almost overnight.
It would take many pages to describe the confounded beliefs of Himmler and his chief followers. Let's just say that they included (but were not limited to) Madame Blavatski's teachings about a superior race born in the mountains of Central Asia, the Arthurian and Nibelungen myths, the Germanic hero-kings of yore and much more.
With so much money at hand the SS went on a "spending spree" to finance whatever project they saw as related to their beliefs. They generously financed expeditions to the Himalayas to find traces of long-lost kingdom of Agarthi, gave enormous grants to cover any study they saw fitting in their twisted belief system... It has often been said that Himmler was obsessed with the occult in the same way as Goering was obsessed with wine and food, but we cannot say how much of this obsession was real, how much was cleverly calculated propaganda and how much a later invention.
There have been all kind of ridicolous legends about the Nazis and their involvment in the occult that it's even hard to start. One of the most widely circulated is that when the Red Army pushed home the final assault on Berlin they were faced by a legion of Tibetan monks dressed in black SS uniforms. Another says that when Austria was annexed in 1935 the Nazi immediately took away the Holy Roman Empire regalia from the Hofburg because they wanted to get possession of the Holy Lance. The regalia translation was very real, but it had of course a clear political meaning and, moreover, the Holy Lance had already been shown to not be an ancient relic but a Medieval fake, and it's probably a Frankish or Longobardic contus.

__________________

"Louhi spoke in riddled tones of three things to achieve: find and catch the Devil's Moose and bring it here to me. Seize the Stallion born of Fire, harness the Golden Horse. He captured and bound the Moose, he tamed the Golden Horse. Still there remained one final task: hunt for the Bird from the Stream of Death"

-Kalevala, Rune XIII-


Mysteryshopper
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Great material for an

Great material for an adventure film! No, wait ... :)

Ian Topham's picture
Ian Topham
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I am sure I read somewhere

I am sure I read somewhere that the OTO (German branch) had groomed Hitler, which I never really believed. It may have come from Crowley, I'll try and trace the source of it.

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Agricola
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Of course, closer to home

Of course, closer to home there's the whole Helen Duncan affair. Helen, a medium, allegedly picked up messages from sailors killed at sea, only, the Ministry of War hadn't released the information about the sinking. Duncan was subsequently arrested and tried. Some stories calim that she was tried for spying, and others say she was tried under witchcraft legislation. However, the latter is a misnoma, and Duncan was actually tried as a fraudulant medium. Recently, there has been a misguided attempt at securing a pardon for Duncan on the grounds that she wasn't a witch and should not have been tried as one!

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BaronIveagh
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One thing that is true, they

One thing that is true, they did sponsor archaeological digs around the world to seek out supposedly 'Aryan' artifacts. Much of the occultism debate links with the frankly questionable science and theories that some of these men put forward to try and explain away evidence which conflicted with their sponsors world view. Sort of like scientists who work for big tobacco companies trying to explain away all those cancer reports, only with even less credible science.



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