“Martinism” is a term often used by writers on the subject of secret societies, but little defined. It refers to at least two varieties of Christian spiritual teaching, usually but not always inseparable from the freemasons. Some authors suggest that the ELECT COHENS were Martinists, named after Martinez Paschales, along with the Ordre des Chevaizers Bienfaisants de La Cité Sainte, which is the highest of the degrees of the Revised Scottish Rite. Paschales is presumably the same person as Martin de Pasqually, a name that also appears in Masonic literature.

Then there are the devotees of Louis-Claude de Saint-Martin (b. 1743, and in his turn a follower of Paschales). The Friends of St-Martin were organized in 1882 by two of his pupils, who discovered that there were both his students when talking over the lunch they habitually took (with others) each Tuesday in a small restaurant on the Rive Gauche. The orders rituals were hastily gotten up, grades were invented, and Martinism has trundled on to this day. It has survived the occasional schism and reunification, but (as in many branches of Freemasonry), no one appears to be quite sure what the teachings are, other than the fact that they are Christian.

The order has three degrees:
Associé, Mystique and Supérieur Inconnu.

In what little literature appears in print, specifically in Mariel and Bayard, they sound like born-again Christians with a Roman Catholic spin.