The Secret History of the World

Narrated by: John Lee
Length: 15 hrs and 52 mins
Categories: History, World
4 out of 5 stars (1,046 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

They say that history is written by the victors. But what if history - or what we have come to know as history - has all along been written by the wrong people? What if everything we've been told is only part of the story? What if it's the wrong part?

In this groundbreaking new work, Mark Booth embarks on an enthralling intellectual tour of our world's secret histories. Starting from a dangerous premise - that everything we've been taught about our world's past is corrupted, and that the stories put forward by the various cults and mystery schools throughout history are true - Booth produces nothing short of an alternate history of the past 3,000 years.

History is more than a list of things that have happened; it's a measure of consciousness and experience. And in The Secret History of the World, Booth's take on history is relentless, charging through time and space and thought in interdisciplinary fashion. Embracing cognitive science, religion, psychology, historiography, and philosophy, he draws a new timeline, and a huge swath of our cultural heritage that has long been hidden is restored. From Greek and Egyptian mythology to Jewish folklore, from Christian cults to Freemasons, from Charlemagne to Don Quixote, from George Washington to Hitler - Booth shows without a doubt that history as we know it needs a revolutionary rethink, and he has 3,000 years of hidden wisdom to back it up.

©2008 Mark Booth (P)2008 Tantor
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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A unique perspective

Any additional comments?

As as an author and student of esoteric history myself, I wasn't really expecting to learn anything new from this book, but I was happily surprised. What Mark Booth accomplished so deftly was the the tying together of the long and divergent aspects of the secret history of the world into a single, coherent story about the evolution of consciousness. And his observations about the importance of certain historical figures were sometimes quite stunning. I'm a non-believer, and while I've always thought of Jesus as a charismatic man, great teacher, and someone crucial to the history of civilization, Booth's assertion that he was pivotal in the evolution of human psychology -- being the first person to espouse the virtue of an individual loving one's fellow man -- hit me like a brick. Likewise, I've always been peeved at Freud for his male-centric theories, but Mark Booth points out that Freud introduced the world to the notion of the subconscious. Suddenly these two figures (as well as several others) assumed their rightful positions in the evolution of human thought. This book is jam-packed with facts and is sometimes a bit dense, but it's never dull. I suggest if you start feeling bogged down, skip ahead a little. You'll surely find yourself immersed in something fascinating in the next chapter. The reader, John Lee, has a very cultured British accent. I liked it very much.

64 people found this helpful

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Pretty little secrets

The audiobook starts off with a highly unusual story of creation, providing some unconventional versions of the story of creation as presented in the Bible. It goes on to integrate classical mythology, spirituality and eventually, a not-so-secret "secret society" testimony on how the world got to where it is.

It doesn't shy away from attacking conventional norms about human life and nature, which could upset plenty of people. All in all, it is worth listening to if you want to know what some people secretly believe. Mileage may vary.

31 people found this helpful

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Crazy, Weird, Interesting book!

John Lee is a master of narration. I'd listen to the man read the phone book.. At times during this recording, I almost felt like I was. The worst thing about this book is that it often sounds like John's reading a weird college textbook. It does lay out a series of interesting, even fascinating pieces of information. Fans of history, religion and philosophy will find a host of interesting correlations that they're sure to know the background of better than I did. Especially if they have knowledge of Secret Societies. Still, though, I have an overall positive feeling about this book and have, in fact, recommended it to others.

3 people found this helpful

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History told as a struggle between Idealism & Materialism

Did mind come before matter or matter before mind? The author suggests a secret history running through esoteric traditions and secret societies which has influenced some of the worlds greatest thinkers. These thinkers, he asserts, have adopted the philosophy of Idealism, famously set forth by Plato, in which the world is mental or comprised of consciousness.

The work is a heroic attempt to synthesize thousands of years of permutations of such a philosophy up to the present day and to do so in such a way that is easily digestible to a modern reader. This attempt requires the author at moments to paint with a broad strokes pointing readers in directions for their own, later research.

An interesting read for those interested in examining modern materialism, esoteric Christianity, kabbalistic thought, truths hidden in plain sight in our myths & architecture and how materialism has influenced the origins aims of secret societies.

18 people found this helpful

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Simply a Mess.

I expected at the very least, a chronological arrangement of interesting but strange ideas. This book presented lots of strange ideas in a bizarre collection of unrelated events, references and proclaimations. Many of the ideas were interesting, but came in a messy torrent that jumped through the centuries and millenia sometimes in one sentence. There were no explanations and very few examples to support his ideas, just a lot of random fragments, illogicaly clumped together.

27 people found this helpful

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Extremely thorough and transparent

Not for the faint of imagination, but thoroughly covers the esoteric side of history. Will look for more works by the author.

2 people found this helpful

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I knew it!

Imagination is the key... not just interesting but aligned with all religious bits and pieces we know about from every corner of the world..

2 people found this helpful

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Interesting, Thought Provoking

This was a really cool listen. Aside from the great narration, it was really interesting to see so many esoteric connections made across history. However, it wasn’t so esoteric that it was not relatable. This genre/type of book was new for me, and I really enjoyed it!

2 people found this helpful

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A book you will leave better than when you started

a wonderfully written, thorough account of some of societies biggest secrets and twists. Makes perfect sense to the esoteric mind, and is very nicely narrated.

2 people found this helpful

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Very Intriguing

I almost didn't buy this book based on the negative reviews. I'm pleased I ignored the reviews. This book is Captivating and Thought Provoking! I Highly recommend it to "Truth Seekers" everywhere. Loved it!

24 people found this helpful