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Unlike other Zelda games, Link’s Awakening was almost aware that it was a game, and emphasis was unusually on humour.
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The Secret Teachings of All Ages is perhaps the most comprehensive and complete esoteric encyclopedia ever written.
Examinations in England--Germany--Spain--Italy--Naples and Provence--Sicily--Cyprus--Meeting of the Council of Vienne--Suppression of the order--Fate of its Members--Death of Molay.
THE time fixed for the meeting of the council at Vienne was now at hand, in which the fate of the order was to be decided. John de Goderai, a Minorite, had heard that Robert de Raxat, a Templar, had once gone about a meadow crying "Wo, wo is me! A Templar had said to William de Berney, in the presence of several respectable people, at the funeral of the parish-priest of Duxworth, near Cambridge, that a man has no more a soul, after death, than a dog. John De Eure, a secular knight, said that he once invited the prior William de Fenne to dine with him.
Robert of Oteringham, a Minorite, said, "One evening my prior did not appear at table, as relics were come from Palestine which he wished to show the brethren. Another witness said that the son of a Templar had peeped through the slits of the door into the chapter-room, and seen a new member put to death for hesitating to deny Christ.
John of Gertia, a Minorite, was told by a woman named Agnes Lovecote, who said she had it from Exvalethus, prior in London, that when in one of the chapters a brother had refused to spit on the cross, they suspended him in a well and covered it up. In June, 1310, the pope wrote to King Edward, blaming his lenity and calling on him to employ the torture in order to elicit the truth. The Templars in the Spanish peninsula were examined, and witnesses heard for and against them in Castile, Leon, Aragon, and Portugal, and nothing was proved against them. The influence of the pope may be supposed to have been stronger in Italy than in the countries above mentioned, and accordingly we find that declarations similar to those made in France were given there. To the honour of the assembled fathers, they refused to sanction this flagrant act of injustice.
Philip, whose practice it was always to look after his affairs himself, deeming his presence necessary at Vienne, set out for that place, where he arrived early in February, accompanied by his three sons, his brother, and several nobles and men-at-arms.
The order being suppressed, persecution became needless, and it consequently ceased in a great measure. While the noble order over which he had presided was thus suppressed, its members scattered, its property bestowed on others, the Master, James de Molay, with his three companions, the great-prior of Normandy, Hugh de Peyraud, visiter of France, and Guy, brother to the Dauphin of Auvergne, still languished in prison. A papal commission, composed of the bishop of Alba and two other cardinals, proceeded to Paris, not to hear the prisoners, but, taking their guilt for proved, to pronounce their sentence. Molay was followed by Guy in his assertion of the innocence of the order; the other two remained silent. It remains to discuss the two following points:--Did the religio-military order of the Knights Templars hold a secret doctrine subversive of religion and morality? We have seen what the evidence against the Templars was, and it is very plain that such evidence would not be admitted in any modern court of justice. We make little doubt that any one who coolly and candidly considers the preceding account of the manner in which the order was suppressed will readily concede that the guilt of its members was anything but proved. James de Molay, in the year 1314, in anticipation of his speedy martyrdom,, appointed Johannes Marcus Lormenius to be his successor in his dignity.
This is no doubt a very plausible circumstantial account; but, on applying the Ithuriel spear of criticism to it, various ugly shapes resembling falsehood start up. As to the freemasons, we incline to think that it was the accidental circumstance of the name of the Templars which has led them to claim a descent from that order; and it is possible that, if the same fate had fallen on the knights of St. 327:* Almost every charge brought against the Templars had been previously made against the Albigenses, with how much truth every one is aware. 329:* Similar charges are said to have been brought against the Hospitallers in the year 1238, but without effect.
329:† Clement, in a bull dated but four days after that of the suppression, acknowledged that the whole of the evidence against the order amounted only to suspicion! Before we proceed to narrate its acts we will briefly state the result of the examinations of the Templars in other countries.


After dinner the prior took from his bosom a book, and gave it to the knight's lady to read. About midnight I heard a confused noise in the chapel; I got up, and, looking through the keyhole, saw that it was lighted. This witness also deposed to some other enormities which he said he had heard of from the same woman, herself speaking from hearsay. The council of London, after a long discussion, ordered it to be employed, but so as not to mutilate the limbs or cause an incurable wound or violent effusion of blood. The council of Tarragona in Aragon, after applying the torture, pronounced the order free from the stain of heresy.
On the 1st October, 1311, the pope came to Vienne, which is a short distance from the city of Lyons, and found there 114 bishops, besides several other prelates, already assembled. The pope was not present when they appeared, but his letter of the 11th November shows how he acted when he heard that defenders of the order had presented themselves. The effect of his presence was soon perceptible; the pope assembled the cardinals and several other prelates in a secret consistory, and abolished the order, by his sole authority, on the 22nd March, 1313.
The king and the pope converted to their own use the moveable property of the order in France. Those who had escaped were, if they did not appear within a year before the council or their diocesan, to be excommunicated.
Molay had there but one attendant, his cook; the allowance made to him was barely sufficient to procure him common necessaries, and life had now lost all its value in his eyes. The pontiff actually did die of a cholic on the night of the 19th of the following month, and, the church in which his body was laid taking fire, the corpse was half consumed. It was either hearsay, or given by persons utterly unworthy of credit, or wrung from the accused by agony and torture. This was going too far for Wilike, and he thinks that the guilt of introducing the secret doctrine lies on the chaplains; for he could discern that the doctrines of gnosticism, which the Templars are supposed to have held, were beyond the comprehension of illiterate knights, who, though they could fight and pray, were but ill qualified to enter into the mazes of mystic metaphysics. Far be it from us to maintain that the morals of the Templars were purer than those of the other religious orders. It behoves their modern impugners to furnish some stronger proofs than any they have as yet brought forward. Why then did he delay so long, and why was he become so apprehensive of martyrdom at that time, especially when, as is well known, there was then no intention of putting him to death? As this book is only sold to members of the society, we have been unable to obtain a copy of it.
The Templars were treated with great mildness; and in England, Ireland, and Scotland, they were unanimous and constant in their assertion of the innocence of the order. She found on a paper which was fastened into the book the following words, "Christ was not the Son of God, nor born of a virgin, but conceived by Mary, the wife of Joseph, in the same way as all other men. In the morning I asked a brother who was the saint in whose honour they had celebrated the festival during the night? Those examined in Provence were all serving-brethren, and some of them testified to the impiety and idolatry of the order. He said the cat had not appeared for a long time in the chapters but that the ancient statutes of Damietta said that it used to appear and be worshipped. On the 13th, the anniversary of the arrest of the Templars four years before, the council commenced its sittings in the cathedral. Clement had these brave knights arrested and thrown into prison, and, in real or affected terror at the number of Templars at large, he took additional precautions for the security of his person, and counselled the king to do the same. Instead of complying with this demand of justice and humanity, Clement suddenly put an end to the session. Its other possessions were, sorely against the will of the king, assigned to the order of the Hospitaliers, who were, however, obliged to pay such large fines to the king and pope as completely impoverished them. John, on the same footing as they had stood on in their own order--a strong proof that the guilt of the order of the Templars was not, by any means, regarded as proved. The intelligence was conveyed to the king, who, instantly calling his council together, without any spiritual person being present, condemned the two knights to the flames. According, therefore, to one party, the whole order was corrupt from top to bottom; according to another, the secrets were confined to a few, and, contrary to all analogy, the heads of the order were frequently in ignorance of them.
With such ample means as they possessed of indulging all their appetites and passions, it would be contrary to all experience to suppose that they always restrained them, and we will even concede that some of their members were obnoxious to charges of deism, impiety, breaches of their religious vows, and gross licentiousness.


There has been an unbroken succession of grand-masters down to the present times, among whom are to be found some of the most illustrious names in France. We are very far from denying that at the time of the suppression of the order of the Temple there was a secret doctrine in existence, and that the overthrow of the papal power, with its idolatry, superstition, and impiety, was the object aimed at by those who held it, and that freemasonry may possibly be that doctrine under another name *. Scott, in his Ivanhoe, as a competent witness against the Templars, on account of his correct and faithful pictures of the manners and opinions of the middle ages. It must not be concealed that this writer strongly asserts that the Templars were a branch of this society. Hall has successfully distilled the essence of more arcane subjects than one would think possible.
The evidence against the order was almost all hearsay: its nature will be shown by the following specimens.
The Wildgraf Frederic, preceptor on the Rhine, offered to undergo the ordeal of glowing iron.
Peter some confessions to the same effect were made; but at Bologna, Cesena, and Ancona, nothing transpired. The pope, in his opening speech, stated the grounds of its having been convoked, namely, the process against the Templars, the support of the Holy Land, the reformation of the Church.
Gradually, as the members died off, or merged into other orders, the name of the Templars fell into oblivion, or was only recollected with pity for their unmerited fate. The fetid smell of their burning flesh infected the surrounding air, and added to their torments; yet still they persevered in their declarations. Most probably it was these events which gave rise to the tradition, which testifies the general belief of the innocence of the Templars. Are we to believe that the same men had adopted the pure deism of the Mahommedans, and were guilty of a species of idolatry * almost too gross for the lowest superstition?
But we are perfectly convinced that no proof of any weight has been given of the Templars' participation in that doctrine, and that all probability is on the other side. We apprehend that people are beginning now to entertain somewhat different ideas on the subject of our great romancer's fidelity, of which the present pages present some instances.
That this writer should have believed it implicitly is, we apprehend, no proof of its truth.
He covers Rosicrucianism and other secret societies, alchemy, cryptology, Kabbalah, Tarot, pyramids, the Zodiac, Pythagorean philosophy, Masonry, gemology, Nicholas Flammel, the identity of William Shakespeare, The Life and Teachings of Thoth Hermes Trismegistus, The Qabbalah, The Hiramic Legend, The Tree of the Sephiroth, Mystic Christianity, and there are more than 200 illustrations included here. He had known the Master intimately in the East, and believed him to be as good a Christian as any man. The bishops of Soissons, Mende, Leon, and Aquila, who had been appointed to draw up a report of the result of the different examinations respecting the order, read it before the assembled fathers, who then once more invited any Templars who wished to defend the order to appear. The property of the Templars in Aragon was given to the order of Our Lady of Montesa, which was founded in 1317. It was also remarked that all the active persecutors of the order perished by premature or violent deaths. We regard them, in fine, whatever their sins may have been, as martyrs--martyrs to the cupidity, blood-thirstiness, and ambition of the king of France.
The spectators shed tears at the view of their constancy, and during the night their ashes were gathered up to be preserved as relics.
Moreover, was it not repugnant to the rules and customs of the Templars for a Master to appoint his successor? Diniz, the able and enlightened king of Portugal, did not suppress the order, whose innocence his prelates had recognised. Bernard praised as models of Christian zeal and piety, and whom the whole Christian world admired and revered, engaged in a secret conspiracy against religion and government?
These are a few of the objections which we think may be justly made; and, on the whole, we feel strongly disposed to reject the whole story. To yield a show of obedience to the papal will, he made it change its name, and the great-prior of the Templars in Portugal became the master of the Order of Christ, which has continued to the present times.
Those who had revoked the confessions made under torture, or through fear of it, were to be regarded as innocent--a very different rule from that acted on by King Philip.



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