Once when I was around 17, I was smoking pot with my friend Kurt and his girlfriend. Kurt was somewhat of a Styxenhammer666 type character that was into “the occult.” As a Christian kid, I was naturally curious about this “occult” precisely because it was considered “evil” by the Christian culture I was enmeshed in – a typically teenage rebellious instinct.

So I asked Kurt, “ok what’s this ‘magic’ stuff? How does it work?”

Kurt picked up some length of string he had lying around, and said “hold out your hands, wrists together” and he ties my hands. He then gives the other end of the string to his girlfriend and says, “now you’re her slave!”

Immediately, I became enlightened.

I don’t know if Kurt meant anything by this, but the message to me was clear: I believed that Kurt had some sort of “secret knowledge and power.” Because I believed this, he was able to manipulate me because I wanted that secret knowledge and power that he had.

Kurt would eventually join Aleister Crowley’s Ordo Templi Orientis (O.T.O.) and I became very casually acquainted with some of the local people in that crowd. One thing that struck me about this crowd, it seemed to include a much higher than average number of guys that were, how do I put this, “not entirely straight,” and a lot of the gals hinted about sex orgies and the like. But the appeal of a bunch of easy gals did not outweigh my, let’s say, “discomfort” about hanging around and doing drugs with a bunch of guys that were “not entirely straight”

Little did I know that I had stumbled upon the same phenomenon that President Eisenhower stumbled upon in the 1950s, in the aftermath of the Cambridge Five espionage scandal. And only in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, when I began to heavily research what the intelligence community calls “HUMINT” and eventually read the work of Andrea Nolen would I come to look back at my life – as a kid growing up in Washington DC surrounded by spooks – and begin to put certain things together.

There are different kinds of “intelligence” and even an academic discipline called “intelligence studies.” Intelligence agencies are typically a part of government, but large corporations often have their own “intelligence department” or contract with a number of “private intelligence agencies.”

The “information age” has changed the nature of intelligence work. Now, the NSA just reads everyone’s emails and taps their phone. They have more “raw intelligence” than they can analyze. There is a wide field of “intelligence” but I want to focus on what is called “human intelligence” or “HUMINT.” The Defense Intelligence Agency is an interesting subject in and of itself, as is the National Reconnaissance Office, but the two agencies I want to focus on are the Office of Naval Intelligence, as this is America’s oldest intelligence agency and the most “American” in nature, and the Central Intelligence Agency, as this agency is perhaps the most damaging to America and was co-opted from the beginning by foreign powers.

As mentioned previously, before the Industrial Revolution there was really no difference between a “secret society” and an “intelligence agency” and no real distinction between what we now call “the occult” and what we now call “spycraft.”

“Occult” simply means “hidden.”

Freemasonry, for example, is a very complex historical phenomenon, but one can see English Freemasonry as a sort of “cultural intelligence agency” for the British Empire. Certainly, many Catholics saw Freemasonry as a Jewish led “intelligence agency” staffed by Protestants.

Early “occult” literature is full of religious and spiritual language and symbolism, because at the time society was very religious and they spoke and thought in those terms.

Some of the worst and most damaging aspects of American society came about due to the nature of intelligence agencies, their evolution from “secret societies” and the legacy of their “HUMINT” methodology evolved from early “occult” practices.

Consider the “occult” concept of “casting a spell on someone.” Right now, as you read this, there are thousands of goth teenagers in their mom’s basement, Aleister Crowley book in hand, performing silly “rituals” based on a comical misinterpretation of the true nature of “casting spells.”

Remember that there was once no distinction between “the occult” and “science.” Early occultists were a kind of predecessor to scientists, trying to understand the world and how to manipulate it. For instance, parts of early “alchemy” eventually evolved into modern chemistry.

Another part of the “occult” would eventually evolve into what we now call an application of “psychology.” In fact, historically, we can see the development of the art of manipulating both individuals and groups to do what you want. Even the most primitive societies sought to control people’s behaviors by “casting a spell on them.” Early European occultists used the language of “casting spells” to describe what was, more likely, a kind of developing “folk art” used to attempt to manipulate people surreptitiously. We see later the development of a kind of pseudo-science approach, called variously “mesmerism,” “animal magenetism” and “hypnosis.”

We can also see that early “alchemists” experimented with various kinds of drugs, and we see the modern intelligence agencies using drugs on both individuals, as well as groups, hoping to manipulate their behavior. The CIA Operation ARTICHOKE was interested in using various methods of psychology – and drugs – to turn people into a kind of “automaton.”

The popular 1950’s novel and film The Manchurian Candidate was likely inspired by the real life ambitions of the Central Intelligence Agency to create just such a “remote controlled assassin.” This writer is absolutely convinced that the supposed assassin of RFK, Sirhan Sirhan, was a victim of just this sort of program, a program that failed to produce a true “remote controlled assassin” but proved useful in creating mentally deranged patsies unable to understand and remember much of what was happening to them.

If you read Aleister Crowley – and I don’t suggest you do, he’s awful and terribly boring – understand that some of the “magick” language that he uses is referring to various types of early attempts at “hypnosis,” drugging, and behavior modification. The “rituals” are a kind of attempt at a “hypnosis” of both yourself, and others. Some of what Crowley might term “demons” were a metaphor for various ideas he believed he was able to plant into people’s minds through a kind of “folk psychology” and “hypnosis” – and druggings – ideas that would then influence their behavior. Some of his descriptions of “demonic possession” refers to the terrible and violent behavior he believed he was able to induce in certain people using these techniques.

And much of Crowley’s “Satanism” was to play on the prevailing Christian culture at the time. What kind of people from a Christian culture would seek out “Satanism?”

There are two aspects of Crowley’s “satanic” gimmick. The first is a hook to attract a specific type of person, and the second is a way of desensitizing people to violations of their own cultural moral norms and taboos – something Crowley was interested in for both personal and professional reasons.

Modern intelligence agencies often make a distinction between three “roles” in intelligence work. First are “officers” – these are actual employees of the agency. Second are “agents” – these are not official employees of the agency, but instead people who are knowingly and usually, but not always, more or less willingly working with the agency. Third are “assets” – these are people who are behaving in the way that the agency wants, without necessarily even knowing they are doing so, nor understanding how they are being influenced by agency personnel – or agency propaganda.

In his book, “By Way Of Deception” former Mossad officer Victor Ostrovsky discusses the role of “sayanim.” “Sayanim” are Jews living outside of Israel that have agreed to assist Mossad operations in ways such as providing money, cover, “safe houses” and even cars or weapons to Mossad agents. These sayanim know nothing of the Mossad operations they are assisting, which provides them a kind of plausible deniability and often a legal cover.

Mossad is able to recruit these sayanim by playing on Jewish identity, Zionist ideology, and the insular culture of many Jews living in the diaspora.

One of the most sinister CIA tactics has been the large scale recruitment of large groups of people, some of whom will play a role similar to that of sayanim, or more properly assets, that behave in such a way that it advances the goals of the CIA without really understanding what they are doing, or why. In fact, many of these people believe they are doing what they do in their own best interest.

Aleister Crowley was using the tactic with his “magic society” the O.T.O. L. Ron Hubbard was almost certainly, at least in the the beginning, using this tactic with his Dianetics movement which later evolved into the Church of Scientology.

One of the CIA’s most notorious torture specialists, Dan Mitrione, appears to have recruited a childhood friend, a charismatic sociopath – two traits that quite often appear together – to recruit a pool of unwitting people who became victims of a mass psychology experiment, one that eventually included mass druggings, that ended with their mass murder in a ham-handed attempt at preventing the discovery of the program by the U.S. Congress.

That man was, of course, Jim Jones.

By looking at the tactics of groups like the Jewish sayanim, Aleister Crowley’s O.T.O., L. Ron Hubbard’s Church of Scientology, and Jim Jones’ People’s Temple, we can understand a lot more about how intelligence agencies have operated, the context of “Satanism” in covert operations, and why so many people believe that Hollywood is controlled by “The Illuminati” – including many of the actors and actresses themselves.