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Millennium Group History

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"Those who do not read and understand history are doomed to repeat it."

Something occurred to me last night as I trampled through the my mental-Millennium-Omniverse and it was born from a frantic attempt to mentally organise various conundrums in Owls, Roosters, Anamnesis, Matroyshka and Sebastian regrading the seeming incoherence of the suggested antiquity of the Millennium Group. I tried to deduce if the suggested dates, vastly different, seen in Season's Two and Three could be resolved somewhat. Now if you contest. and I know some do, that Millennium should be viewed as three distinct seasons, three distinct entities, with no common thread or cogent link then this will be of little consequence. Each origin date and story will therefore be acceptable and right for the season it is occurring in. This concept, I guess, would allow Season Four to date the Millennium Group's origin to Year Dot BC or even last week without having any detrimental effect upon continuity. I, as you may have guessed, don't accept this premise and believe that whilst thematically very different there has to be a coherence, a commonality, to the three seasons purely as this is the only way I can reconcile Millennium and if I'm wrong I must return to the show and watch it as something entirely different.

On with the show...

Throughout Season Two it is suggested that the Millennium Group has been in existence since, at least, the time of Christ. It is clear that James Wong wished to indicate this when he wrote, in reference to 'The Hand of Saint Sebastian', "...'I felt that by revealing that the Millennium Group had existed for centuries and setting the episode overseas, that would give the story greater scope and weight..." Sebastian, and all therein, I guess could be easily discounted as although what is shown in flashback bears all the trappings of the Millennium Group, ourobrous and mantra, it is not explicitly stated that the teaser depicts an historical Millennium Group and may simply show an ancestor from which Millennium evolved or drew inspiration. Unfortunately it would seem that Anamnesis may offer some credence to the idea that the opening of 'The Hand of Saint Sebastian' does infact depict the Millennium Group in name and actuality. Ben Fisher describes the 'Group' and 'The Family' sharing a distant unity, Lara confirms this when she explains to Catherine that "...A thousand years ago, The Millennium Group and The Family shared a vision -- over time that vision changed. Inevitably prompting a split between the two groups..." As the Sebastian teaser is dated to A.D. 998 it would make the opening scenes exactly a 1000 years away from the events of Anamnesis and may depict the very split Lara discusses. As 'The Family' are keepers of the grail, Arthurian relic seekers if you will, it is keeping with the nature of the Fugitive's Group who covets the Hand of Sebastian in the midst of a civil war and sits, thematically, nicely with the idea of a violent in-war of Knights-Templar-inspired-origins. This splintering of 'The Family' and 'The Millennium Group' could well be one of the civil wars, two previous, discussed in Owls and Roosters and therefore lend credence to all we see in those historically steeped outings.

Owls and Roosters are certainly less vague and cannot be so easily discounted as they date the 'Group's' origin to the birth pangs of Christianity (Mr. Dean notes that "..Only twice in two thousand years has the Millennium Group been so divided....") Which gives the Millennium Group a consistent, in light of the above, millennia old history. Move from these episodes to Matroyshka and the real headache begins. For those of you who do not have Matroyshka to hand we are teased with the idea that the Millennium Group may have been a recent construct devised by J Edgar Hoover in the ashes of atomic experimentation in the 1940's. In Matroyshka we see Director Hoover producing his sketch of the ouroborous in the scene that appears to depict it's first use as the symbol of the Group. It is interesting to note that in the original draft of Matroyshka the exchange between Hoover and Tolson refers to: "An enigmatic symbol for our new group," though this is tempered in the final version to: 'an ancient symbol for our ancient group.' Oddly the original intention behind this scene is revealed by a present day conversation between Peter Watts and a Group Elder, who notes: "A rocky beginning. Hoover and Tolson had the right idea, though." It appears to me that despite the rewrite the tonal theme of the episode remains the same. We are witnessing the inception of something accompanied by the assertion that the ouroborous, as the groups symbol, occurred as late 1945. and whilst I do not contest this, save to say I hate the idea that Hoover gave birth to the Millennium group, it is a stark contrast from what we have seen in Season Two which gave the Millennium Group a history of mythic proportions. My question, therefore, is 'is there any evidence in Season Two that all the historical depictions were groups that inspired Millennium rather than actually being them and could it be that when we talk in terms of the 2000 year old 'Group' what we are doing is giving a respectful reference to those who went before who shared a commonality rather than a direct link or direct origin.

I realised that it may well be the case that the Millennium Group of Season Two is noted to have been created around the same time as the origin date given in Season Three - that Matroyshka, despite all the seeming evidence, may reiterate what we see albeit with an embellished, more political, backstory. This evidence comes in the form of The Old Man who explains to Frank and Lara that "...There's not a single member of the Group that didn't... pass... by my home. That I didn't teach... what we are about. Not you, Frank... or you, Lara. Watts. Every Patron. Every Elder." Of course he goes on to note that he too had his teachers but this seems to be a reference purely to those who guided him on the path to enlightenment - his dialogue is very specific in its treatment of him as the first member of the Millennium Group. This, I guess, would date the Millennium group as relatively modern and as the Old Man is to note that Odessa have "....have always wanted him....." it would seem that he is certainly prominent around the time of Odessa's emergence after the Second World War and the origin date given in Matroyshka.

Now not wanting digress, but feeling a need, there also seems some confusion with regards to the antiquity of Odessa. Historically it is 'Skorzeny' who is generally credited with setting up the famous escape network to help Nazi war criminals flee Europe after the war. Thousands of Nazi war criminals benefited from his escape network (helped by the Vatican) and fled to Arab countries and Latin America between 1949 and 1952. Axmann's seeming assertion that "...after seventy five years, centuries, really... we have won..." not only incorrectly dates Owls and Roosters as occurring around 2072 but hints, perplexingly, that Odessa has an historical lineage and history as old as that credited, possibly, to the Millennium Group. The answer could lie is Peter's enlightening Odessa treatment when he notes that "For half a century, they've sponsored acts of terrorism, successfully conspired to control social and political events in their direction of dark mysticism. " Despite that fact that he offers a third, and more accurate, Odessa timeline his statement with regards to their mystical trappings is not in keeping with what we know about the real Odessa. It could be then that like the Millennium Group Odessa owes it's current incarnation to an earlier order or group from which it descended, my guess would be that Odessa traces it' origins in Armanism. Guido von List called his 'darky mystical' Nazi doctrine "Armanism" (after the 'Armanen', supposedly the heirs of the sun-king, a body of priest-kings in the ancient Ario-Germanic nation). Armanism was concerned with the esoteric doctrines of the gnosis (distinct from the esoteric doctrine intended for the lower social classes. As this is the only real historical element of the Nazi doctine it could be that Odessa refer to themselves as direct descendants of Aramanism and may explain why they give themselves an antiquity Odessa simply does not have.

I would love the great and good amongst you to give this topic some thought and speculate upon the history and the antiquity of the group and share you conclusions. It is a topic that continues to fascinate, and perplex, me and I would love some help and gentle prodding and correcting.

Anyone fancy a trip down memory lane?



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Guest chrisnu

That was very well thought-out. Thank you for the fascinating read. :clapping:

I took the Old Man's statements to allude to him being the founding member of the current iteration of the Millennium Group. I believe that the emergence of the Owls was primarily a very recent movement, and that Millennium had previously been exclusively religious in origin and beliefs. I do believe the historial representation in "The Hand of Saint Sebastian" to be a factual recollection of what the Group had been. It's possible that J. Edgar Hoover had involvement in the creation of the secular faction of the Group, but I've always taken that to be incongruity between seasons.

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All change is not growth, as all movement is not forward. ~Ellen Glasgow

Thanks for your comments Chrisnu,

I did consider if Matroyshka depicted the formation of the secular 'Owls' but found that this could not be the case however much I wished it to be. Whatever Matroyska does depict, whatever group or faction is formed therein, it has a mandate and a philosophy very distinct from those espoused by either Owls or Roosters. The Owls had a very structured view of end-time events born from the result of an astronomical spatial rift whereas Matroyshka's group held a contradictory dogma, as recounted by Lilly Unser, that man would be the architect of his own apocalypse most likely through war and scientific advances. There is also evidence to suggest a possible time line for the Owls formation as Lara in her 'concise history of the Millennium Group' ramble asserts that he Owls were born from the heretical cosmology of Copernicus (1473 - 1543) and Galileo (1564 - 1642).

Clearly the period between 1473 and 1642 was the era that consolidated whatever secular leanings there were present in the Group into a distinct faction with an identifiable belief system and mandate. As it is noted that the Group suffered two serious divisions in it's history I proffer that the first civil war engendered 'The Family' and occurred in 998 AD and the second gave rise the Owls probably some time after 1610 as this year was to see Galileo turn his hand to the cosmological mysteries of the heavens.

The only logical answer for what happens in Matroyshka is that Chris Carter wished, understandably, to offer an alternative genesis for the Millennium Group but did so without paying heed to whatever continuity M+W had established although I believe that the alternative viewpoint that is that Matroyshka was intended to enrich the continuity by establishing why the centuries old order of soothsayers, theologians and theoretical scientists evolved into the FBI assisting criminologists of Season One. The whole Group structure of Season Two with it's mysterious hierarchy and religious-tinged initiations did not sit at ease with the notion of an agency that lends it's composite brilliance to the fight against crime and Chris Carter must have wanted to explain how this gaggle of law enforcement veterans were shown as members of a quasi-mystical sect shedding it's blood in arcane rituals. To some degree, I guess, the changes wrought in Season Two were also reactionary mainly in answer to why these self same FBI-types were so enamoured, and well versed with, Biblical esoteria, Mayan Prophecy, Astrology, Demonology and so on and so forth - a case of the chicken and the egg to some degree. These re-inventions are understandable, attempts to give cohesion to the changing face of the Millennium Group but my problem lies with the idea that in the 1940's J Edgar Hoover was so prominent a group member that he was able to redefine and reshape 2000 years of group history and tradition in giving the group a new remit as well as alternative end-time viewpoint. This idea, though valid, has problems as it seems to contradict The Old Man's assertion that all things came through him as well as not explaining why this 'we kill ourselves' philosophy is not espoused by the group though it was seemingly all the rage in the 1940's. I guess it could be a simple case of unpopularity, this brand-spanking-new understanding of the nature of the apocalypse being nothing more than a vogue that dwindled in light of hundreds of years of established belief.

There is an alternative view that I offered - that of a third faction - but it is nothing more than wild speculation so I can only conclude as you do that it was a case of "...incongruity between seasons..." Shame that.

Anyone else got a theory?


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  • 3 weeks later...

Rationalizing Millennium Group History

Hi! Keeping in mind I don't have the 3rd Season yet, and you've filled in some of the gaps let me take a stab at this. Based on what you've written about Season 3 I don't see anything that needs to be a disparity that invalidates Season 1 and 2.

What I believe we are seeing here is similar to the cycle whereby the Order of Knights Templar became the Freemasons of today. There is sufficient evidence to support the notion that the origins of the Millennium Group, which according to Peter Watts dates back to the origins of Christianity, ...

WATTS: Dr. Schlossburg has placed that body at a thousand years old. It's a bogmummy. The body is so well-preserved because of a polysaccharide called sphagnum. It's found in the peat moss. They've found bodies at 2,000 years old-- bodies that go back to the beginning of Christianity-- back to the beginning of the Millennium Group.

... and likely started with a Gnostic Christian group whose theology was likely considered heretical by Orthodox Christian standards.

In the fourth century Christianity came into tolerance and began to truly flourish. In the year 324 Constantine ascended to Emperor of the whole Roman Empire. That year he moved the capital from Rome to the town of Byzantium in Eastern Europe and founded the Byzantine Empire. The new capital took 6 years to build and it was later renamed Constantinople.

In Beyond Belief: The Secret Gospel of Thomas, Elaine Pagels writes that Eusebius of Caesarea wrote in History of the Church that "God miraculously intervened on October 28, 312 by revealing Christ's sign in the heavens to the pagan emperor Constantine and [gained] his allegiance. Eusebius then tells how, in the years that followed, Constantine declared amnesty for Christians and became their imperial patron."

(Two incredible webpages that present ideas on what Constantine may have observed that day are as follows…


https://www.twcac.org/onlinehorizon/cross.htm )

Constantine allocated funds for the reparation of Christian churches and ordered that new churches be built throughout his empire including the building of St. Peters Church on Vatican Hill in Rome and the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem.

The Church of the Holy Sepulcher appear in the Episode Owls when Peter explains to Lara Means how Helena (in 326AD) went looking for the Cross of the Crucifixion ...

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That was very well thought-out. Thank you for the fascinating read.  :clapping:

I took the Old Man's statements to allude to him being the founding member of the current iteration of the Millennium Group. I believe that the emergence of the Owls was primarily a very recent movement, and that Millennium had previously been exclusively religious in origin and beliefs. I do believe the historial representation in "The Hand of Saint Sebastian" to be a factual recollection of what the Group had been. It's possible that J. Edgar Hoover had involvement in the creation of the secular faction of the Group, but I've always taken that to be incongruity between seasons.


That was kinda my thinking, too. I'll have to return here to do a more thourough post when I'm feeling a little better.

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  • 1 month later...


Here is an article from The Cathloic Encyclopedia (Volume X) for the entry on Millennium and Millenarianism. While it doesn't refer to the Millennium Group or the show, it does talk about the notion of the Millennium being important with respect to the end of the world, and also to the events of the end of the world not being tied to the date of the millennium but possibly occurring at any time.

"elief in the future realization of the kingdom is called "millenarianism" (or "chiliasm", from the Greek chilia, scil. ete).

This term of one thousand years, however, is by no means an essential element of the millennium as conceived by its adherents. The extent, details of the realization, conditions, the place, of the millennium were variously described. Essential are the following points:

* the early return of Christ in all His power and glory,

* the establishment of an earthly kingdom with the just,

* the resuscitation of the deceased saints and their participation in the glorious reign,

* the destruction of the powers hostile to God, and,

* at the end of the kingdom, the universal resurrection with the final judgment, after which the just will

enter heaven, while the wicked will be consigned to the eternal fire of hell."

It would seem logical that the Millennium Group's membership share in this philosophy which is why the name "The Millennium Group" is used. If the basis of their understanding of the nature of evil is steeped in Millenarianism, then the name would be appropriate at any time irrespective of the date. It also explains why as eth.snafu pointed out why the ex-law enforcement personnel are "so enamoured, and well versed with, Biblical esoteria, Mayan Prophecy, Astrology, Demonology and so on and so forth."

While this doesn't necessarily shed light on how they got from point A to point B, or season 1 to season 3, it is a piece of the puzzle. Chew on that, and let us know how it goes down.


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