Helena P. Blavatsky’s Theosophical Glossary (published in 1892), references the term “Illuminati” and defines it, from Latin, as a reference to the “Enlightened,” or the initiated adepts† (Lat. adeptus. “an expert”). The term is the past participle of illuminare, meaning to “light up,” or “illuminate.” The plural term, “Illuminati” (Lat. illuminatus; Ital. Illuminato) was originally applied to a 16 c. Spanish mystic sect, called the Alumbrados (Spanish. “Enlightened”), or Aluminados, led by Sister María de Santo Domingo, or La Beata de Piedrahita (a Spanish mystic c. 1485 – c. 1524). This term later, under Illuminés, spread to France from Seville of Andalusia, Spain in 1623; and joined in a cause with the Guérinets under Pierre Guérin in 1634. Another little known group of Illuminés arose in south France, whom were called “French Prophets.” They were an off-shoot of the Camisards (French Protestant militants) of the Bas-Languedoc and Cévennes regions, from circa 1722-1794. The Alumbrados were first recorded in 1492 Spain, and had three edicts issued against them by the Catholic Inquisition. Besides the similar name, there is no historical or organisational link to the Illuminati (founded in 1776) of Ingolstadt, Bavaria (repressed in 1785). The founder, Adam Weishaupt, and his Order held deistic and republican ideals; and defined enlightenment in the secular or “intellectual” and moral sense. Adam Weishaupt emulated and valued the mysteries.
In the article, “What is an Adept and Initiate?,” the terms “Rosicrucian Illuminati,” and the “Illuminati,” are mentioned. As stated in other articles, the term “Illuminati” refer to a circle of Adepts. It does not refer to what popular culture uses as a synonym, to a bureaucratic elite, or technocrats. Many spread these ideas for their propaganda and businesses. Calling technocrats, bureaucrats and corrupt government officials gnostics and “Illuminati” deifies and immortalizes persons who are otherwise rank materialists, even if they were knowledgeable of the occult.
For more information see Josef Wäges (https://theamericanminvra.wordpress.com/…/illumin…/) who is working with others on a digital collection of Adam Weishaupt’s writings. See also Professor of History at UC Davis, Kathryn Olmsted (https://theamericanminvra.wordpress.com/…/buzz-fe…/).