join the Knights Templar

How To Join The Knights Templar

The Knights Templar, an organization steeped in mystery and intrigue, has long piqued the interest of history enthusiasts and seekers of ancient knowledge. Many wonder, “Can you join the Knights Templar?” or “Can Christians join the Knights Templar?” The answer isn’t simple as the Knights Templar, as we know from history, is different today. Nonetheless, this article aims to address these questions and more, offering a guide on how to join the real Order of the Knights Templar.

A Brief History of The Knights Templar

The Knights Templar was a medieval Christian military order established in the early 12th century. The Templars played a significant role during the Crusades, and their order was recognized for its unique combination of warrior and monk-like characteristics.

However, the original Knights Templar disbanded in the 14th century, and the organization as it was known no longer exists. These days, several organizations worldwide claim to be successors of the original Knights Templar, varying widely in their goals and ideals.

What Was the Code of the Knights Templar?

The Knights Templar followed a strict code of conduct known as the Latin Rule, introduced by Bernard of Clairvaux in the early 12th century. This document detailed more than 70 individual clauses outlining the behavior, duties, and daily life of the Templars.

The Templars were expected to lead lives of utmost piety, humility, and discipline. They took vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience, similar to monastic orders of the time. Despite being knights, they were forbidden from hunting and participating in secular entertainment. Their attire was modest, usually consisting of a white mantle adorned with a red cross, signifying their purity and martyrdom.

Their military conduct was also strictly regulated. They were expected to stand their ground in battle, only retreating if significantly outnumbered. They were forbidden from taking personal glory in victory, as victories were attributed to God’s will.

Moreover, they practiced charity and were expected to protect the weak, particularly Christian pilgrims traveling to the Holy Land. They operated hospitals and offered other forms of aid to those in need.

This code provided a spiritual and ethical framework for the Templars, guiding their actions and cementing their reputation as one of the most formidable and respected orders of the Middle Ages.

Do Knights Templars Still Exist?

In the strictest sense of historical continuity, the Knights Templar, as the specific medieval Christian military order, does not exist today. The original organization was founded in 1119 and officially disbanded by Pope Clement V in 1312 following a series of events, including accusations of heresy, political pressure, and financial instability.

Yet, the legacy of the Knights Templar lives on in various forms. Numerous organizations worldwide have adopted the Templar name and emblem, seeking to emulate their ideals and principles. These groups range from Christian fraternal organizations to esoteric societies and charitable groups. While they carry the Templar name, none can claim a direct, unbroken lineage to the original order.

Multiple modern Templar organizations reflect the enduring appeal of the original Knights Templar, their values of courage, piety, and charity, and the intrigue surrounding their history. Although they can’t claim to be the same organization that once protected Christian pilgrims in the Holy Land, they carry the Templar name and ideals into the modern era, providing a touchstone to a fascinating part of history.

So, while the original Knights Templar no longer exist, their spirit continues to inspire modern organizations, keeping the Templar legacy alive in the 21st century.

Understanding Modern Templar Organizations

Modern Templar organizations are typically fraternal groups that strive to uphold the ideals of the original Knights Templar. Some are purely ceremonial, others are charitable societies, while some lean towards the esoteric. These groups often promote brotherhood, spirituality, charity, and historical research.

When one considers the Knights Templar, images of valiant knights clad in white mantles adorned with red crosses often come to mind as the forefront defenders of Christian pilgrims during the Middle Ages. Still, the modern Templar organizations are quite different from their historical counterpart.

These contemporary groups are diverse, found worldwide, and differ significantly in their ideologies and objectives. Some identify as Christian chivalric organizations, while others define themselves as esoteric societies seeking ancient wisdom. Templar organizations also focus primarily on charitable works and community service, embodying the knightly virtues of courage, compassion, and generosity.

A well-known modern Templar organization is the Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem (OSMTH), which promotes Christian chivalric ideals and participates actively in humanitarian efforts. Another is the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar, a part of the York Rite of Freemasonry, which integrates Templar traditions into its fraternal structure. Then, there are groups like Templar Order International, which combines esoteric learning with charitable work.

It’s important to note that while these organizations carry the Templar name, none can claim an unbroken lineage to the original medieval order. The original Knights Templar were disbanded in 1312, and while many modern organizations honor and seek to emulate their principles, they are new entities formed in more recent times.

Joining these modern Templar organizations typically involves an application process, sponsorship from an existing member, and commitment to the group’s principles. Some organizations also require an initiation ceremony reminiscent of the rites of the medieval Templars.

Can You Join the Knights Templar?

Yes, you can join modern Templar organizations, but remember, these are not the same as the historical Knights Templar. Joining one of these groups commonly involves a formal application process, a demonstrated commitment to the group’s principles, and often an initiation ceremony.

Can Christians Join the Knights Templar?

The original Knights Templar were indeed Christian, but can Christians join the Knights Templar today? The answer is generally yes. Many modern Templar organizations are Christian-oriented; some even require their members to profess Christian faith. However, the degree to which this is enforced varies from group to group.

Can Norse Pagans Join The Knights Templar?

While the original Knights Templar were Christian, the modern Templar organizations vary in religious requirements. Some organizations are more inclusive and welcome members from various religious backgrounds, including Norse Pagans. But this is not a universal policy, and Norse Pagans interested in joining should research and reach out to specific organizations to understand their stance.

Can Women Join the Knights Templar?

The original Knights Templar was an all-male organization. But the world has evolved, and so have many modern Templar organizations. Today, several Templar groups allow women to join and participate fully. Again, this varies from organization to organization. Women interested in joining should research and contact specific groups to understand their policy towards female membership.

How to Join the Real Order of The Knights Templar

Herein lies the complexity: defining the “real” Order of the Knights Templar. Given that the original order ceased to exist centuries ago, today’s “real” order is subjective and depends on personal interpretation.

Nonetheless, suppose you’re interested in joining an organization that closely aligns with the values and traditions of the original Knights Templar. In that case, research is crucial. Identify organizations with historical lineage and continuity, uphold the Templar ideals of brotherhood, charity, and spirituality, and have a credible reputation.

Once you’ve identified an organization, reach out to them directly for membership information. The process often involves sponsorship from a current member, submission of a formal application, and participation in an initiation ceremony. 

Bottom Line

The path to joining a modern Templar organization can be as varied and intricate as the history of the original Knights Templar. It requires careful research, an understanding of the group’s principles, and a commitment to upholding them. While it’s true that these organizations are not the same as the historical Knights Templar, they offer a unique opportunity to connect with the past and be part of a community that values brotherhood, charity, and spiritual growth.

When seeking to join a Templar organization, one must remember to respect the diversity among these groups. While some may be strictly Christian, others embrace members from various religious backgrounds, including Norse Pagans. The inclusivity extends to gender as well, with many organizations opening their doors to women.

In conclusion, to join a Templar organization, one must first identify which group aligns best with their beliefs and aspirations. Reach out to the organization, understand its membership process, and be prepared to demonstrate a commitment to its values. Remember, the journey to becoming a modern Knight Templar is not just about joining a group; it’s about embracing a lifestyle that honors the principles of the ancient order.

Whether you’re a Christian, a Norse Pagan, a woman, or anyone intrigued by the history and ethos of the Knights Templar, there’s likely a Templar organization that will welcome you. So, if you’ve ever asked yourself, “Can I join the Knights Templar?” the answer is likely yes. But the real question you should ask is, “Am I ready to uphold the ideals of the Knights Templar?” Because ultimately, being a Templar – in any era – is less about membership in a group and more about a personal commitment to living out the principles of courage, charity, and brotherhood.

To prospective Templars, we wish you the best on your quest. May it be as enlightening and fulfilling as the rich history of the Knights Templar themselves.