An Interview with Mark Amaru Pinkham

Djedi Knights, Monastery of the Seven Rays, and Gnostic Wisdom Revealed

by Brent Raynes

Mark Amaru Pinkham is the North American Grand Prior of The International Order of Gnostic Templars. He is currently teaching the gnostic and alchemical secrets of the ancient Gnostic knights and Knights Templar in lectures and weekend seminars. A schedule is posted on

Editor: You had recently contacted me that your International Order of Gnostic Templars had a new division called the Ancient Academy of Noble Gnostic Knights, and you compared it to a school along the lines of the Jedi Knight Academy, and so I guess we need some explanation since otherwise some folks might kind of think that we’re going overboard here.

What is the Ancient Academy of Noble Gnostic Knights all about?

Mark Pinkham: Well historically you find that the orders of Gnostic Knights like ourselves go back a lot further in history than people know. They tend to begin their history with the Knights Templars and move forward from there, but in fact the Knights Templars themselves inherited a very, very ancient tradition of Gnostic Knight Orders that essentially goes back thousands of years. In the study of esoteric history they talk about Lemuria and Atlantis, the Motherland continents, and we feel that the Orders really started on these ancient continents. The idea of the Fisher King of the Holy Grail tradition, for example, we believe started with a Great Master and Priest King who was the founder of a Gnostic tradition on Lemuria. Many esoteric students currently recognize him as Sanat Kumara.

What’s interesting is that in the Hindu tradition this Lemurian Priest King has many different names, one of which is Karttikeya. As Karttikeya he is commander in chief of the hosts of heaven, just like the Christian Saint Michael. Essentially that’s what he is, the Hindu version of the Saint Michael. And like the Christian commander he had his own order of soldiers or knights. The Holy Grail tradition really begins with him. He, like the priest kings of ancient times, was a human Holy Grail, a chalice or embodiment of the Holy Grail energy.

What makes something a Holy Grail is that it possesses a certain energy, a certain frequency. So if you were to drink out of it, if it was a chalice, or eat off of it if it was a plate, that frequency would enter you and then it would initiate a process of alchemical enfoldment within you.

So in truth the Holy Grail is a frequency. It’s an energy. It’s a high frequency of prana or life force, if you will, and in ancient times the priest kings were full of this energy. They were human Holy Grails, and you’ll find in their histories that it was their energy that nourished their lands, their countries, and kept them healthy and prosperous. And you also find that when the ancient priest kings strayed from the true righteous path they lost some of their energy and their country suffered because of it. Droughts would occur, or they would go into an economic depression, or whatever.

This whole priest king tradition really started on Lemuria with Sanat Kumara and it was from the motherland that missionaries were sent out around the world to create their own kingdoms where they became new priest kings with courts and Gnostic knights. You’ll find that Persia had its priest kings who were surrounded by Gnostic knights. You’ll find that Egypt did as well.

In Egypt the Pharoah was the head of the magician priests known as the Djedi. That’s where we believe that George Lucas came up with the name Jedi Knights. The pronunciation is basically the same.

Editor: Yeah, that would be quite a coincidence.

Mark Pinkham: Yes, and that’s why we believe that so many of the scenes in the Star Wars movies took place in desert regions because that’s what covered most of Egypt.

The Djedi of Egypt were magicians and sorcerers who would walk around in hooded costumes like Jedi Knights, and they would carry staffs. The staffs were symbols and embodiments of their power, and through their staffs they could direct their spiritual power, which was the Force. A good example of it was the scene in the Exodus of the Bible where you’ve got the Pharoah, and Moses and Aaron who are asking for the release of the Hebrews, and in order to show his power Aaron turned his staff into a huge serpent. The serpent is a symbol of the force, of energy, and at that time the Djedi knights, the Djedi priests of the Pharoah, turned their staffs into live snakes as well, but Aaron’s was ten times their size and devoured all of their snakes. This simply represents that his power, his force, was ten times as strong as theirs.

There was somewhere around 500 B.C., a dynasty of priest kings in Persia called the Kayanid Dynasty and within this dynasty were a number of priest kings, or Fisher Kings. They were very enlightened kings with a lot of power or force, called Farr. They possessed the power and their knights also worked on developing their own Farr. One of the greatest of these Persian priest kings was called Key-Koshrow. It is said that he lived in a palace, like King Arthur’s castle, and he actually had his own knights. They were called Narts who would come together and sit around a big table, just like King Arthur and his knights, and they would pass around a Holy Grail chalice called the Nartmongue, and it is said that only the greatest of the knights could drink out of that cup, otherwise something fatal would happen to them. So the story is essentially the same as the story of King Arthur, which wasn’t written down until about 1500 years later.

A lot of people think that the legend of King Arthur was actually an evolution of this old Persian history. There were a number of Persian Kights called Sarmatians who were actually hired into the Roman legions, and some of those Sarmatians were sent up to Hadrians Wall in order to protect it from the Pics. At the end of the Roman Empire they were let go and many of them joined together at that point to become King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table. That whole scenario is depicted in the popular recent movie called “King Arthur.”

Editor: If someone wants to learn more about this, is there a book that you’ve written on the subject?

Mark Pinkham: Right now what I’m doing is I’m going around teaching seminars and in the lectures that are associated with those seminars I’m teaching this information. It’s not information that has been given out readily to the public before now. It has been known about, but it hasn’t been freely disseminated. If people want to know where those seminars are they can go to our website: And on the homepage it will give out that information.

Editor: You mentioned Moses and that makes me think of manna.

Mark Pinkham: Actually manna is another form of this prana. One of the legends is that the manna manifested for the Hebrews in the morning as dew, and dew is actually a form of alchemical elixir used by the alchemists. It’s all interconnected.

Basically, what we’re doing with this Ancient Academy of Old Gnostic Knights is that we are reviving these ancient traditions of the Gnostic knights. Eventually what occurred was a split between Church and State, so the kings weren’t priest kings anymore; they were just kings. But before that the kings were both head of Church and State. After that happened the Gnostic knights kind of went off and assembled around certain Grand Masters, who took the place of the priest kings. So then you started having traditions like the Knights Templar. The Assassins is a good example because they were directly descended from the old Fisher King/Persian orders of knights and eventually replaced their Fisher Kings with Grand Masters.

In fact, Hasan-i-Sabah, who founded the Assassins, actually built his castle of Alamut, meaning the Eagle’s Nest in the Albourz Mountains, which is exactly where the ancient Persian Fisher Kings had their castles. So he was essentially carrying on that same tradition. His movement became a model for some of the later knight orders, where instead of having Fisher Kings or Priest Kings you’ve got the Grand Masters. The Templars became one of these organizations and they had a Gnostic Order. They initiated people into the Gnostic and alchemical mysteries that had been passed down to them from the knighted orders that existed as early as Lemuria.

During their heretical practices the Templars were actually observing the Gnostic rites of the earliest knights. So this is what we in the IOGT want to reinstate. We want to re-establish this tradition and we’re doing it through this vehicle of the Ancient Academy of Noble Gnostic Knights.

Editor: If someone wants to attend your seminars and learn about all of this, what can they look forward to that would empower their lives to benefit them.

Mark Pinkham: Well, within the workshops we teach people how to develop and use their force. Now the force, once it is developed, can be used for health and longevity. It’s your prana that keeps you alive. It can also be used for manifestation and directed into ones spiritual practices. In the earliest Templar mystery schools there was a transmission of energy of very high frequency prana between a Templar Master and a new initiate.

It is said that a Templar Master would kiss a new initiate in different places on his body to transmit this power. These were the infamous Templar kisses. There were a couple that are directly associated with that energy, with awakening that energy, like a kiss below the navel and at the base of the spine. Those are traditional places associated with the seats of kundalini in the body. There was also the kiss on the mouth which is also an ancient Gnostic practice. For thousands of years, Gnostic Masters have been transmitting their energy, their frequency or Holy Grail power into a disciple via their own breath.

Editor: For years we’ve heard about the sacred breath.

Mark Pinkham: Yeah, exactly. So this is the alchemical force that moves from a Master into the disciple and awakens their inner alchemical force which has been called kundalini, as well as many other names. It then initiates an entire process of alchemical enfoldment. We are reviving some practices involving the transmission of the alchemical energy in order to assist people on their alchemical path. Essentially that’s what alchemy is all about. Ultimately it is to awaken the inner force, because once that inner energy is awakened that power - which is a conscious energy - does all the work of transforming a person on all different levels. It purifies to such a degree that the wisdom in their own heart can shine forth and the revelation of “I am God/Goddess” can then become a part of their conscious awareness.

Editor: How about your journeys down in South America to Peru. I know that you had been interested in a lot of these things back when you were investigating and learning about the metaphysical elements and consciousness of the ancient Peruvians. And the symbolism of the serpent in association with their beliefs, can you maybe mention some parallels there that further inspired you along this path?

Mark Pinkham: Well, yes certainly. The serpent is an important symbol and spirit animal in Peru, and certainly among the shamans. Actually it is among shamans all over the world because it is believed that the serpent represents the energy or force shamans use. They can manifest with it. They can heal with it. It represents energy that runs underneath the surface of the planet and the power that runs under the surface or skin of the body. Just like the snakes and serpents that live underground, this energy, this life force, moves under the surface of the earth. So the shamans invoke the serpent in order to move the earth energy through themselves for their own healing and for their own transformation. They also invoke the puma or the jaguar because the jaguar also represents life force, but it’s the life force that moves on top of the earth. They often invoke both animals, or they’ll invoke a combined puma/serpent, or jaguar/serpent creature that incorporates both energy above and below.

I have done a lot of shamanic work down in Peru where I’ve learned these secrets about invoking the snake, the serpent, and moving that energy through me for my own healing and transformation, and for others. I also learned about the tradition of the serpent wisdom in Peru, which traditionally is the wisdom of gnosis. It’s the highest wisdom. It’s intuitive wisdom. That Peruvian tradition of serpent wisdom they say came from Lemuria, it came via the Great Serpent Master called Aramu Muru, or Amaru Muru. Actually Amaru means snake or serpent, so this great sage from Lemuria was known as the Serpent Muru. Tradition has it that he went into the Andes and built a monastery, called the Monastery of the Seven Rays, and then he placed in it the records of Lemuria as well as the Great Solar Disk that had hung in one of the temples of Lemuria. And at some point they say that he left that monastery and traveled to the Island of the Sun which is right in the center of Lake Titicaca. Then he gathered together on that island a group of builders, the Kapac Kuna, and eventually traveled to the shore of Lake Titicaca where he built the first megalithic city called Tiahaunaco. Then he traveled around the Andes with his entourage building these great megalithic sites until finally he went to Cusco. There he built what is called the Coricancha, the temple of gold. He placed the Solar Disk within that, and then somewhere along the way he changed his name to Manco Kapac and started ruling the Empire as the first Inca Priest King. And they say that within the Incan tradition he founded a mystery school that had seven degrees. There were seven levels of serpent wisdom that you acquired as you went through these seven levels. One of the highest orders of priests in the Inca Empire were the Amarus, “serpents,” and some of the Inca priest kings were called Amarus, like the two Tupac Amarus. It’s believed that they both had the serpent wisdom, the serpent gnosis, but they also had the serpent power, and because they had this intense power generating out of them all of the time there was a lot of intense taboos that were placed upon them and on those around them. If you spent too much time in the presence of one of these Inca priest kings it could be fatal. You couldn’t handle the energy. These were great masters.

But eventually there was a kind of fall from grace within the lineage of the Inca priest kings and then the power and the wisdom was essentially only in the hands of the high priests. Now the priest kings weren’t really happy with that because they wanted the power and the wisdom for themselves, and so it is said that later on in the Empire they actually started persecuting the high priests, trying to force them to give up their wisdom and power.

Then what happened was that there was a time where the high priests had been persecuted so much that they fled from the Inca Empire and went deep into the Andes Mountains where they established their own little community. They continued developing their power and wisdom there, and they say that that village is still in existence today, deep in the Andes Mountains.

Andrea and I were initiated into this ancient tradition by a man who claimed to have gone to the hidden village. Apparently he went there blind folded, on horse back for three days, and when he got there he was initiated into this very ancient tradition that actually goes all the was back to Lemuria via Aramu Muru. Then he was told to continue it in the outside world, so now he’s got his own organization called “The Brotherhood of the Sun” where he’s continuing this very ancient tradition. People can go down to Peru and get initiated into that tradition if they feel called.

Editor: He’s the one who discovered the Amaru Muru Doorway?

Mark Pinkham: Oh no, you’re talking about somebody else. There’s this other man, Jorge Louis Delgado. He lives near Puno, on the shores of Lake Titicaca

Editor: Yeah, that’s who I was talking about.

Mark Pinkham: He’s actually got a hotel in Chiquito, which is near the Doorway. He had a series of dreams where he would find himself on the path to the monastery. At least, that’s what he thought. He would be surrounded by red rock, and he would always wake up before he got to the monastery. But one day he was out walking and he seemed to be in a region similar to his dreams. But it didn’t lead to the monastery. Instead, it led to the Doorway, and so that’s what the dreams seemed to be indicating that he would discover, or rediscover. There’s a lot of legends about the doorway. It’s a doorway to other dimensions, it’s a doorway that can actually transport a person to another dimension, or even to the Monastery of the Seven Rays. People have so many different experiences there. It covers the whole gamut of experiences. But it seems to be an interdimensional doorway, there’s no question. You can be either transported or you can receive information or experiences through the doorway.

Actually Jorge and I went on an expedition to try to find the Monastery of the Seven Rays. We didn’t quite make it but along the way we asked people “Have you heard of the monastery and do you know where it is?” They said, “We don’t know where it is but we’ve heard that it moves between the dimensions.” And they said, “If it’s anywhere, it’s probably near this mountain that looks like a man with his arms outstretched.” Well, we said okay, and then we went on and then one day we’re walking high up in the Andes, kind of along this ridge, and then we looked over and we saw this gigantic mountain that really looked like this man with his arms outstretched and it was giving off this incredible energy that filled up the valley in front of it. We immediately sat down and just bathed ourselves in the energy and we all had major heart opening experiences. We subsequently realized that the monastery was probably nearby but we did not need to find it. What we had just received was the same kind of initiation that we would have received if we had actually made it to the monastery. Actually we were all pretty happy to receive that understanding because we were all pretty tired at the time. It gave us an excuse to call it a day. Jorge has actually been back there two or three times, but he still hasn’t found the monastery. I think he’s kind of put that expedition on hold for now, but I think that we have a pretty good idea where that monastery is.

Editor: Do you think that George Hunt Williamson, who wrote as Brother Philip, had found it?

Mark Pinkham: Well, you know, when we were on the path to finding the monastery we went to a couple of villages and asked people if they had ever heard of Sister Thedra. She was one of the people who claimed to have found the monastery. She originally went down to Peru with George Hunt Williamson and legend has it that she found it and he didn’t. So we would go to these villages and ask, “Have you ever heard of Sister Thedra or George Hunt Williamson?” And they’d say no, but in one village they told us “We know this guy named Philip, and this guy named Philip would come every so often and he would stay in the village and he would make expeditions into the countryside.” They didn’t really know what he was looking for. But we believe that Philip was George Hunt Williamson because his pen name was Philip or Brother Philip. So apparently he told the villagers his name was Philip. So we believe that he was there and that he was looking around, but we don’t know if he ever found the monastery. I don’t think there is any evidence to prove that he did, but he may have. I don’t know.

Now one more thing that I’d like to add is that for many of these Gnostic knighted organizations their goals included the creation of a one world Gnostic spirituality, and it appears that Grand Masters would send their knights out in order to achieve this goal. The Assassin Grand Master Hasan-i-Sabah would send his knights out in order to murder certain people, usually political figures who were opposing his agenda, which included a one world spirituality. Hasan-i-Sabah was trained in the House of Wisdom in Cairo, which was an Ishmaeli organization. The House of Wisdom was a Gnostic mystery school where many Sufis were trained to establish their own orders, their own Sufi orders. The House of Wisdom was actually based on a mystery school founded by a Persian man called Abdulah Maymun, and his desire was to create a one-world Gnostic spiritual tradition. He actually created an organization to do it, called the Batini, and they had relative success. But the curriculum and the structure of the Batini became that of the House of Wisdom in Cairo. Now from the House of Wisdom in Cairo came the Assassins, and later on the Illuminati.

One master who had studied in Egypt for a few years and learned the wisdom of the House of Wisdom was named Kohlmer. He traveled up into Bavaria and initiated Adam Weishaupt into these mystery teachings. This is why Weishuapt’s teachings were colored by Manicheaism and the Persian Calendar because the information from Kohlmer had itself originated in Persia before traveling to the House of Wisdom. So that was what Adam Weishaupt was trying to do with the Illuminati, to continue the work of creating this one world spirituality.

Editor: A lot of this information sounds like it would be aligned with the Masons as well.

Mark Pinkham: Yeah, absolutely. Basically, the Templars started that goal of a one world spirituality from the Assassins and the Sufis, and they passed it on to Freemasons, and the Rosicrucians and all of the secret societies of the earth.

What we’re basically doing now is we’re continuing with that work of trying to create a one world spirituality. We are a Gnostic order like the early Assassins and Templars, and so that is also a part of our agenda. We are currently trying to create a one world spirituality of gnosis by revealing how the path of gnosis and alchemy is the essence of all religions. All religions start with some Gnostic Master who, after having the Gnostic experience and going through some alchemical awakening, teaches his new wisdom to some students, who in turn make a religion out of it. The precepts of the religion eventually become dogmatic, and then there are certain things you must believe as well as many that you can’t believe. Thus, if you kind of shave off the dogma of all of the different religions out there today, that is what you’ll have: the gnostic alchemical path. It’s the primeval path to enlightenment. So this is what we want to go out and teach and show the world.

Mark Amaru Pinkham is the North American Grand Prior of The International Order of Gnostic Templars. He is currently teaching the gnostic and alchemical secrets of the ancient Gnostic knights and Knights Templar in lectures and weekend seminars. A schedule is posted on