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Secret Societies in one form or another have existed throughout the history of human culture. But what is their appeal? What is it that makes so-called respectable people indulge in peculiar ceremonies, dressed in fanciful costumes uttering blood-curdling oaths of loyalty with the threat of death hanging over them should they reveal the inner workings of the cult? Are these organisations simply a way for like-minded followers to get together in a convivial atmosphere for purely social reasons or is there really a dark side to their activities. Are they really trying, as some have suggested, to control world affairs for their own nefarious ends or in some cases harbour the Devil? Are the secret societies' claims that they are in the possession of great knowledge or valuable secrets also true? Are they really trying to engineer history or keep hidden that which may bring about the fall of a religion or a country? In Secret Societies Nick Harding describes some of the best known organisations along with some of their least known counterparts.

He highlights the similarities that all these cults have - they all work to a similar pattern and that basic human psychology plays a far more important role in their continued existence and their enduring appeal than any hidden wisdom, knowledge or world-shattering secret.

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