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Summary

Here for the first time is a complete history of the world, from the beginning of time to the present day, based on the beliefs and writings of the secret societies.

From the esoteric account of the evolution of the species to the occult roots of science, from the secrets of the Flood to the esoteric motives behind American foreign policy, here is a narrative history that shows the basic facts of human existence on this planet can be viewed from a very different angle. Everything in this history is upside down, inside out and the other way around.

At the heart of The Secret History of the World is the belief that we can reach an altered state of consciousness in which we can see things about the way the world works that are hidden from us in our everyday, commonsensical consciousness. This history shows that by using secret techniques, people such as Leonardo da Vinci, Isaac Newton and George Washington have worked themselves into this altered state - and been able to access supernatural levels of intelligence. There have been many books on the subject, but, extraordinarily, no-one has really listened to what the secret societies themselves say.

The author has been helped in his researches by his friendship with a man who is an initiate of more than one secret society, and in one case an initiate of the highest level.

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©2007 Jonathan Black (P)2008 WF Howes Ltd

What members say

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  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Peter
  • Beulah, United Kingdom
  • 19-03-09

Is this some kind of joke?

I couldn't finish this book and I would advise you not to start it.

If you have ever wondered what a deeply senile Harry Potter would write, having been commissioned to document his views on world history and science, then this is the book for you. It is packed tight with mumbo-jumbo and pseudoscience, with about 4 or 5 unfounded, ill-informed attacks on science every minute whilst praising any ridiculous, deluded belief of our ancestors as ancient "wisdom". Mr Black manages to misquote and distort Schr?dinger?s Cat, Quantum Physics, Robotics and a host of other scientific theories in this shambolic, flighty and ignorant book. If "Mr Black" (pseudonym adopted either through sheer embarrassment or to create the illusion of yet another conspiracy) could have got away with stating as fact that there is a conspiracy to cover up the existence and true identity of the tooth-fairy then it would be in here for you to read and become enlightened about.

It bewilders me how this book was ever published, not because of any subversive, insightful material about secret societies that the powers-that-be do not want revealed, but because it is unvarnished, untalented, poorly-researched tat. If there are secret societies out there, which I am quite sure there are, then this is just the sort of book that they would be over the moon to see published as it utterly undermines any credibility to their existence and portrays anyone who believes in them as lunatics.

I find it hard to believe that this man attended Oxford University and spent 20 years researching this book. He should have stayed in bed. Oh, and the narrator cannot pronounce the word "Because", which was the high-point of the book.

40 of 46 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

The mind boggles

Anyone embarking on this audio book should expect an alternative reading of myths and historical events. Whilst Mr Black shifts rapidly between topics he thankfully does this smoothly without getting too bogged down with references. To some, and most who I see who have reviewed the book, this will be viewed as a weakness. I however think it allows for the prose to flow more naturally without it becoming an academic treatise (which it certainly is not). What the author manages is to produce a story or rather an explanation/ context for all those myths and conspiracies one will of heard and put them together in a coherent and understandable way.

I was left, I will admit, enlightened although there where several times I had to rewind it due to drifting of to the narrators rather posh voice.

I would recommend this audiobook to all the curious and relatively informed out there, although you must be prepared to hear the "truth" through conveniently coloured spectacles and not be too offended when it is stretched sometimes a little too far.

22 of 27 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Ron
  • Redlynch, Wiltshire, United Kingdom
  • 28-04-09

Bunk!

This book is incorrectly categorised. I expected a historical treatise on the origins of mythology and religion. This book is a collection of subjective assumptions not dissimilar to those of the Da Vinci Code. The difference being that the latter is correctly published as a work of fiction.

Apply Ockams Razor to the this book and I suspect you would end up with a collection of nouns and not much else. If however you enjoy abandoning your critical faculties you may enjoy the read.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Susan
  • Hove, United Kingdom
  • 13-11-11

very dissappointing

absolute waste of my credit to listen to incoherant mumbo jumbo dressed up as fact.
my advice is dont make the same mistake as I did. If you want a good audio book than by pass this one.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

Interesting

The Secret History of the World is interesting from the point of view of Mythology, but disappointing otherwise.

8 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

A peep through the looking glass of history

I really enjoyed this audiobook. I'd describe it as a pyschohistory documenting the world view and beliefs of various people, or groups of people, throughout history. In this instance it focusses on 'secret societies' and other organisations who believed themselves to possess esoteric, hidden knowledge of the history and purpose of mankind.

Is it true? Well, it's quite fantastical and you have to leave your skepticism at the door when listening to it. But bear in mind that the 'history' that you are listening to is not history as we know it, but history as perceived by people in the past (and perhaps present).

Think about it; it is only in the 20th century that people have believed the world to be 4.5 billion years old. Electricity, antibiotics, the internet, space travel - these were concepts alien to people throughout much of mankinds history. People thought about the world differently. They interpreted events using different psychological models to those we use today.

In this book, the author argues that certain, 'illuminated' groups throughout history, have possessed knowledge, ideas and practices that were 'hidden' from the people at large. That important and powerful people alive today are initiated into organisations that carry the beacon of this knowledge. And that this knowledge is utilised through an understanding of the multi-layered symbolism and meaning of the practices it prescribes.

That's not to say this book is some kind of intimate expose of a veiled reality. More, an interesting sideways look at the historical narrative.

Listen with an open mind

4 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Soporific Twaddle.

Very hard to follow, confusing and contradictory. This was my impression. I may change my opinion following a second reading... But that is unlikely to happen.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Think outside the box!

Would you listen to The Secret History of the World again? Why?

This is a fabulous book. If you have been brain washed by the mass media and have lost the ability to think for yourself, then don't even bother. But, if you are a free thinking radical. Then step right up. Everything start with a thought, each and every thought drives our desires, which in turn become reality. That's a mind before matter universe! Well worth the time listening.

What about Paul Matthews’s performance did you like?

He was a bit monotone at times. But it is a very heavy and factual book.

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Mark
  • BANCHORY, United Kingdom
  • 30-04-09

Awful

The dreary reader, really made this awful book quite unacceptable. Over the 20 or so hours of droning on about this so called secret history, I noticed some few snippets that appeared moderately interesting. This book could easily be rewritten and abridged - by a real author - to about 40-50 pages of useful information. Subjects were dealt with in aparent detail, but on consideration the detail was ephemeral and there was little to connect one data dump with the next data dump. Quite the worst thing I have ever read or heard. Pedantic self important.......

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

WHAT A CON!!!

I agree with the review written by Peter Beulah one hundred per cent. Please read it and take heed. Do not download this book!! you will be very disapointed.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Heimo
  • 05-04-09

Not historical

We wanted a history with facts. What we got was New Age mish mash.Unless the word esoteric enters your conversation once every ten minutes you might not like this book.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Lisa
  • 10-01-10

Very Interesting

I loved this audiobook and listened to it in the car on a couple of trips I made. I found it to be engaging, well written and very well read. Worth another listen as there are so many concepts and so much history covered that it's hard to absorb it all in one listen.
I, unlike the review below, did not find the frequent use of the word 'esoteric' bothersome at all!
Enjoy :)

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Anniebligh
  • 14-09-12

Thoughtful Overview

I first heard 'SHofTW' after borrowing it from my local Library and then tried to find a Hard Copy so I could see the illustrations mentioned in the 'text'.
The focus is on the European Secrets, while giving credit to the Moorish influemces as well as Judaic/Christian influence.
Jonathon Black does make references to the Gnostics as well as the old Mystery Schools.
It presents a Timeline that marks traditions, events and personalities that are known of in conventional history as well the 'Secret History'.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
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  • S
  • 09-09-12

Not worth it

Would you try another book from Jonathan Black and/or Paul Matthews?

No, I wouldn't

What was most disappointing about Jonathan Black???s story?

Very little real information, but rather personal ideas.

Would you be willing to try another one of Paul Matthews???s performances?

Yes.

You didn???t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

None that I could see, but I could not finish it.