The involvement of Heinrich Himmler and Rudolf Hess in the occult is well documented but what about Adolf Hitler? Despite Hitler being the Führer of the Reich and his published and unpublished writings, speeches and records of private conversations little is generally known about his personal spiritual beliefs.
We certainly know from his recorded private conversations (Table Talk) that Hitler was antixtian but had to conceal his true thoughts so that he did not alienate the largely xtian or xtianised German masses.
Clues to his ideas may be gleaned from his early history prior to his election as Chancellor of the Reich.
Some intriguing pieces of evidence are to be found in the late Dr Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke`s The Occult Roots of Nazism. Secret Aryan Cults and their Influence on Nazi Ideology (1985), a seminal work on esoteric National Socialism.
Hitler`s sojourn in Wien (Vienna), a focal point for German-Austrian Ariosophy is likely to have brought him into contact with Ariosophical circles and he is on record as saying that his experiences there shaped his ideology. One must remember that it was a multiracial and multicultural hell-hole, probably a lesser version of that once English city, London.
"Yet Vienna was and remained for me the hardest, though most thorough, school of my life. I had set foot in this town while still half a boy and I left it a man, grown quiet and grave. In it I obtained the foundations of a philosophy in general and a political view in detail, but which never left me. But not until today have I been able to estimate at their full value those years of study." (Mein Kampf, Mannheim translation)
"Vienna was a hard school for me; but it taught me the most profound lessons of my life. I was scarcely more than a boy when I came to live there, and when I left it I had grown to be a man of a grave and pensive nature. In Vienna I had acquired the foundations of a Weltanschauung in general and developed a faculty for analyzing political questions in particular. That Weltanschauung and the political ideas then formed have never been abandoned, though they were expanded later on in some directions. It is only now that I can fully appreciate how valuable those years of apprenticeship were for me." (Mein Kampf, Murphy translation)
Jörg Lanz von Liebenfels when interviewed at his home Wien-Grinzing on 11/5/51 said that Hitler would obtain copies of von Liebenfels` magazine Ostara from a nearby tobacco-kiosk and had approached von Liebenfels to purchase back copies. Liebenfels could see that Hitler was lacking in funds so generously gave him the said back copies free along with his return bus fare. These details were later corroborated by the Police who kept records of residents` addresses and those of local businesses. We have no reason to doubt von Liebenfels` statement. So clearly as a young man Hitler was an avid reader of Ariosophical magazines and this belief system must have influenced him.
A fellow resident of the hostel where Hitler resided, Josef Greiner confirmed in his autobiography, Das Ende der Hitler-Mythos in 1947 that he was friendly with Hitler and later confirmed in 1955 that Hitler had owned a substantial collection of Ostara magazines and that Hitler would engage in heated discussions with another resident about the racial ideas of von Liebenfels.
Hitler absorbed and recycled the ideas of von Liebenfels. A private conversation recorded in 1934, published in Hitler Speaks (1939):
"How can we arrest racial decay? Shall we form a select company of the really initiated? An Order, the brotherhood of Templars round the holy grail of pure blood?"
Many esoteric societies were suppressed during the Third Reich. One of the reasons for this was to obscure any trace of connection between them and Hitler yet in Hitler`s personal library von Liebenfels` Das Buch der Psalmen teutsch (1926) was discovered.
Hitler apparently admitted to Elsa Schmidt-Falk and her husband that he read the works of Guido von List "with enthusiasm" and that he had been given a letter of introduction by the List Society in Wien to the society`s President in München (Munich). In 1921 an early member of the NSDAP, Dr Babette Steininger presented Hitler with a book and on the inside cover she wrote "To Adolf Hitler my dear Armanen brother."
August Kubizek, an early friend of Hitler as a youth recalled that Hitler had penned a play in 1908 about the conflict between xtian missionaries and Germanic priests of a heathen shrine in the Bavarian mountains. Elsa Schmidt-Falk also claims that Hitler owned a first edition copy of von List`s Deutsch Mythologische Landschaftsbilder and held a high opinion of von List`s Der Unbesiegbare (1898).
Goodrick-Clarke states that "there is no evidence that Hitler ever attended the Thule Society" but I contest this bold assumption. Rudolf von Sebottendorf claimed that Hitler was a guest, although not a full member of the Thule Society (see Hammer of the Gods. The Thule Society and the Birth of Nazism, 2012) Often the fledgling German Workers` Party, the precursor to the NSDAP would meet at the offices of the Thule Society at the Four Seasons hotel. Eckart, Rosenberg and Feder were all members of the society.
In the trenches of WWI in 1915 Hitler wrote the following remarkable poem which gives us an idea of where his heart lay:
Sometimes, in the bitter nights I go to Oak Wotan.
Surrounded by silent glare,
To forge an alliance with the powers at night.
The runic letters that makes the moon with his magic spell
and all those who during the day are full of impudence,
They become small before the magic formula!
They cast steel spears, but instead of hitting the target,
Solidify into stalagmites.
Thus, the false are separated from the real.
I came to a nest of swords and then give my formula
Blessings and prosperity for the good and the fair.