This sounds like something out of the "Historical Illuminatus" books, or in Illuminatus! but it's real: Scholars have succeeded in cracking a secret code from a German secret society in the 1740s that advocated a revolt to restore man's "natural freedom."
The Wired article explains that deciphering such articles could rewrite the history of the West: "Dismissed today as fodder for conspiracy theorists and History Channel specials, they once served an important purpose: Their lodges were safe houses where freethinkers could explore everything from the laws of physics to the rights of man to the nature of God, all hidden from the oppressive, authoritarian eyes of church and state. But largely because they were so secretive, little is known about most of these organizations. Membership in all but the biggest died out over a century ago, and many of their encrypted texts have remained uncracked, dismissed by historians as impenetrable novelties."
The article even speculates that members of the group invented rituals to conceal their involvement in Freemasonry. Shades of the coding and concealment discussed in Cosmic Trigger 1?
Hat tip: Dan Clore at the Robert Anton Wilson Fans group on Facebook.