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Mary Alice Bennett is an archaeological restoration artist who lives in the Sonoran desert near the border with Mexico. As an art history student, she has had a life-long fascination with Leonardo DaVinci and also with studying the ancient mysteries. Since her church has a long tradition about Jesus and Mary Magdalene, the Dan Brown book was not new information to her. "The DaVinci Code" aside, here are more clues in the work of Leonardo to ponder. Email Mary Alice Bennett.

The Occult Mystery Diary - Is it the Journal of Papus Himself?
by Mary Alice Bennett

Posted: 12:00 July 15, 2008

The author of "The Tarot of the Bohemians" popularized the Hermetic sciences in the late 19th century. He wrote his books under the pseudonym of "Papus" and was a well known medical doctor who diagnosed his patients as a clairvoyant. His fame reached Russia where he was the spiritual advisor to the Tsar and Tsarina.

Is he the author of the recently discovered coded mystery diary?

What`s in a Name?

Gerard Encausse aka Saenz de Castillon
The author calls himself "Saenz de Castillon" (pronounced "Signs"). The name is a combination of two last names. In the Spanish Catholic tradition, a person`s surname is a combination the father`s last name followed by the mother`s last name. The surname ends the list of first names which includes the Saints Day name of the day of birth.

"Gerard Encausse" was the Christian name of Papus. He was born on July 17, 1865 to a Spanish mother in Spain. His father was a French chemist. The family moved to France when he was three years old. It makes sense that he would use a Spanish pseudonym to write a coded diary.

What comes up in reference to the name "Castillon" is the city of Saint Martin de Castillon. There is a city of that name in Provence, France and one in northwest Spain as well. Papus was a follower of the philosopher "Saint-Martin" who was the secretary to Martinez de Pasqually, the founder of Martinism. Louis-Claude de Saint-Martin clarified his master`s theories and called himself "The Unknown Philosopher". In 1890 Papus took over the Martinist Order and popularized it around the world. The name "de Castillon" is associated with the city of Saint-Martin de Castillon and would be the perfect pseudonym for the avid Martinist.

The Martinists

Martinez de Pasqually, the original founder of Martinism, was born in Grenoble, France in 1710 and died in Haiti in 1774. He drew his ideas from Gnosticism, the Cabala (Kabbalah) and Hermetica, and from the early Christian theologian Origen. Pasqually taught that there must be a personal revelation of the soul`s origin and a majical ceremony to invoke and unite the initiate with his guardian angel. The initiate would then become the vehicle or agent of this entitiy - a New Age doctrine from the 18th century. The crest of the modern Martinist Order is the Star of David in a circle which is the same as the Hautepoul family crest from the Languedoc. The Martinist diety was called "Jehoshua". The highest degree in the order was called "The Ordre des Chevalier-Macons" - "The Order of Knights and Masons, Chosen Priests of the Universe". They were the only ones who were allowed to participate in the evocation of spirits using magic circles with the names of angels and the planetary spirits. They also performed exorcisms in order to thwart negative influences. Pasqually`s secretary Saint-Martin interpreted his theories, his book led to the founding of the Russian Martinist order.

A Man of Many Paths

The diarist "Saenz de Castillon" recorded that he studied Theosophy and Freemasonry as well as Spiritualism and the teachings of the Sufis and Dervishes. He claims to have been a Martinist and also to have participated in Russian Skoptsy and Khlsty of which Rasputin was a member.

In comparison, Gerard Encausse, or "Papus", visited Russia three times between 1900-1906 as the physician and occult consultant to the Russian royal court. He warned Tsar Nicholas II and Tsarina Alexandra about the dangerous influence of Rasputin.

Helena Blavatsky, co-founder of the Theosophical Society.
Early on, Papus joined Helena Blavatsky`s Theosophical Society when she visited Paris in 1884-1885, but he objected to her focus on the Eastern occult teachings. Papus himself was a student of the work of Eliaphas Levi who compared the 22 paths of the Cabala Sephiroth to the 22 trumps of the Tarot`s Major Arcana. It was Papus who added the Hermetica to the popular spiritualist interests of the time.

In 1893 he became a Cathar Bishop and in March of 1895 he joined the Ahathoor Temple of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn in Paris. The exotic Semiramis ceremony from the mystery diary is reminiscent of the Golden Dawn`s activities. Papus eventually converted his network of Martinist lodges over to the spurious "Masonic Order of Memphis and Misraim" since the Freemasons in France had declined his offer. He opened his organization to both men and women and began to teach the forbidden lore of the Masons to both genders, for which he was reprimanded.

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