I recently read a book that I'd found on the used books shelf at the local charity shop. It was called the Hiram Key.
It was a book about Freemasons, an organisation that in some ways seems silly, and others fascinating. The author traces the roots of Freemasonry back through time, suggesting they have links to ancient Egyptian rituals, which directly influenced the rise of Judaism and Christianity. He goes onto suggest Freemasons spawned from the Knight's Templar of France, who were themselves the guardians and seekers of historical truth, the knowledge thereof leading to claims of Heresy and their downfall.
I don't have any interest in reading stories of religious epiphany or someone's road to finding Jesus, or Moses, or Mohammad. I am however fascinated by the history of it all. I want to know more about the times of these impressive figures, how they lived and changed the world. More than anything, I want snippets of the truth, especially if it's controversial.
I'm like someone hanging on every word of the tabloids and their latest dirt on Brittany, Branjolina, or you name it. Except my fascination is about different religions and how they got it wrong.
The Hiram Key is most controversial toward the Catholic Church, saying it was a creation of the dying Roman Empire in a bid for it to retain power. It claims the Catholic Church relied almost solely on the misguided religious interpretations of Paul, whom among other upstart Christian groups in the holy land, was considered a complete charlaton who filled in the holes of his sketchy understanding of Jesus with his own ideas.
It's controversial and I like it...
As a child, saying the Lords Prayer every day at school, I used to think it finished with, "All men." It makes sense to a child, as though that final blessing is reserved for everyone, though a staunch feminist might disagree. So where did Amen come from anyway?
It's a word that all three religions, Judaism, Christiantiy, and Islam, finish their prayers with. According to the Hiram key, it was a link between ancient Egypt's most powerful god and ceremonies, and modern religion. It was a reference to Amen Ra, the Egyptian sun god.
The Hiram Key, Pharoh's, Freemasonry and the Secret Scrolls of Jesus: A worthwhile read if you are like me and enjoy some different perspectives on history. If you can get past it's main weakness, that it often passed off conjecture as truth in order to further other points of conjecture, then you're in for an entertaining tale, and a peek into a secretive sect of society that dates back through the centuries and continues to capture people's imaginations.