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Cover Story, Wild West Freemasonry Did You Know? Famous Freemasons – Samuel Colt The Foundation Stone Lodge Kelvin Patrick No.1207. The Story of Shibboleth Rays of Masonry Old Tiler Talks Who Was Hiram Abiff? Did You Know? Pillars and Globes, Columns and Candlesticks They All Came Just For Me A Mason Believes The Emblems of Freemasonry
Main Website – The Mark Degree
Volume 14 Issue 2 No. 108 February 2018
In this issue: Cover Story
‘Wild West Freemasonry’ A look at 19th century North America and cowboys, gunslingers and lawmen of the American Wild West who were Freemasons.
Page 8, ‘Did You Know?’ Page 10, ‘Samuel Colt’ Famous Freemason. Page 12, ‘The Foundation Stone’ What to tell a Non-Mason. Page 15, ‘Lodge Kelvin Patrick No. 1207. A History of one of our Old Scottish Lodges. Page 18, ‘The Story of Shibboleth’ Explaining what it really means. Page 22, ‘Rays of Masonry.’ “The Responsibility of the Master” Page 22, ‘The Old Tiler Talks.’ “On a Lodge Budget”, sixty-fifth in the series. Page 24, The thoughts of Bro. Rabbi Raymond Apple. Page 26, ‘Did You Know?’ Page 28, ‘Pillars and Globes, Columns and Candlesticks – Part 3’ Page 30, ‘They All Came Just For Me – A Poem.’ Page 31, ‘A Mason Believes.’ Page 33, ‘The Emblems of Freemasonry.’
In the Lectures website The article for this month is ‘The Mark Degree.’ [link] Front cover – Stock picture from the Internet
Wild West Freemasonry Many of the Brethren reading this would have grown up at a time when various cowboys were the recognised heroes of many young boys — mainly due to the growing availability of television during the middle decades of this century. In consequence, the "Wild West" holds a peculiar fascination for many of us. A side of the old West you rarely see on television or in the cinema is that part played by Freemasonry. Freemasonry arrived in North America from the British Isles during the eighteenth century. From the moment Freemasonry was introduced to North America Freemasons played an important part in the development of the country to make it what it is today. Many of the military were in the Craft as were many of the frontiersmen, merchants, miners and craftsmen who developed the early towns. Indeed, many of the first Lodges, along the pioneer trails, were military Lodges with some of the highest ranking Freemasons also well placed in the militia. The pioneer trails, which carried settlers west, came in two waves — the first reached, and crossed, the Appalachian Mountains while the second pushed from the mighty Mississippi to the Pacific coast. The second wave included the two most famous pioneer trails — the Oregon Trail and the Santa Fe Trail. Both these trails started at a place called Independence, Missouri, which was the "Crewe Junction" of the "Wild West" trails. The Santa Fe
Trail, opened in 1821, was approximately 800 — 1,000 miles long. There were two extensions of the trail which both led to California — the Old Spanish Trail and the Gila River Trail. The Oregon Trail was 2,000 miles long and was opened in 1840 and, also, had an extension leading to California. When gold was found in California in 1848 the number of pioneers using this trail soared. However, many died along the trail — not from fights with Indians but from disease — the main one being cholera. Copies of remedies for cholera were based on information from the Edinburgh Board of Health. Asiatic cholera first reached Eastern cities in the early 1830s, inspiring broadsheets like the one shown here. Emigrants carried the scourge with them, and cholera killed more pioneers than all other diseases combined.
One of the larger than life characters was a man who counted, among other talents, those of being a trapper, guide, mule driver, soldier, interpreter, frontiersman, scout and 2
explorer. He was small in build and almost totally illiterate but became a giant among those early settlers. He was born Christopher Carson but is better known as "Kit" Carson. Kit was born, in 1809, in Madison County, Kentucky in the same year and approximately the same area as Abraham Lincoln. However, when he was only one year old, Kit's family moved to a place called Boon's Lick in Missouri. This was an important move because it was only about 70 miles from Independence. When he was about 14/15 years old he became apprenticed to a saddlemaker. He hated it so much he ran away from home and in 1826 joined a group of traders heading for Santa Fe. His employer put up a reward of one cent for his return – it was never claimed! Kit spent his first winter in New Mexico in a town called Taos which was the headquarters for trappers in the great southwest. When Masons first established themselves in an area the number of Brethren was usually quite small. It was sometimes necessary to have a non-Mason to act as Tyler. It has been suggested that some of these Tylers were the wives of the Brethren in whose houses the meetings were being held. Stranger still were claims about "Tylers" found at some of the Prairie meetings. The Prairies, being vast and flat, had houses built into the ground so that only a few feet of the house showed above ground level. This was to preserve heat in winter and coolness in summer. Some of the "Tylers" found here were said to be the dogs of the Brethren. The dogs would stand on the roof and at the first sign of a stranger, a long way off, they would bark loudly and alert the Brethren within. Probably the earliest freemasons in New Mexico were Charles and William Bent and 3
Ceran St Vrain (although St Vrain was not a Mason when he arrived in New Mexico) – those three also founded a small trading post, called Bents' Fort, in Colorado in the 1830s. Brother Charles Bent was probably the first Freemason to actually settle in New Mexico. He later became the first Governor of New Mexico and, also, Kit Carson's brother-in-law. From 1829 until 1841 Kit worked in the fur trade and trapped beavers in Arizona, California, Idaho, Wyoming and the Rocky Mountains – an immense area. During this time he lived with the Indians; he had a child by an Arapaho squaw and, also, lived with a Cheyenne squaw. Kit's blood brother was also in the Craft. Brother Moses B. Carson was initiated into Freemasonry in Franklin Union Lodge No. 7 on the roll of the Grand Lodge of Missouri. He was also involved in the fur trade and had several other Masons as partners. It was during this time in history that one of the most famous of events involving the Mexicans and the Americans took place – the Alamo. The three main defenders of the mission in San Antonio, Texas, were William Barret Travis, James Bowie and Davie Crockett. It has been claimed that all three were members of the Craft. Other Brethren present have also been identified and, no doubt, there were others who have not been identified as Masons. Contrary to what is shown on television and in the cinema not all the men were killed in the Alamo – Davie Crockett was one of six survivors who surrendered to Santa Anna only to be shot later by order of that General. In April 1836, the month after the Alamo, General Sam Houston and his army had a glorious victory over Santa Anna on the plains of San Jacinto. Sam Houston was a member of the Craft and was a member of
the same Lodge as General Andrew Jackson. In the year 1815 Jackson had defeated the British at the Battle of New Orleans (a song which was made famous by Lonnie Donnegan). Brother Jackson went on to become the 7th President of the U.S.A. He was the first, though not the last, President to be born in a log cabin. Brother Sam Houston had several disputes with the Grand Lodge of Tennessee and ended up being suspended for duelling. Later, when Brother Sam moved to Texas to live, he became President of the Republic, Governor of the State and chairman of the Organisational Meeting of the Grand Lodge of Texas. The question still remains was he in good standing when he carried out the duties of that last office? In 1842 Kit Carson met John C. Fremont who was a soldier/explorer. Fremont was involved in about seven major expeditions with Kit taking part in the first three. In 1843, between the first and second expeditions, Kit was married, in Taos, to Josefa Jaramillo the daughter of Don Francisco Jaramillo and a member of one of New Mexico's leading Spanish families. Brother Charles Bent was married to Josefa's sister. Kit, by this time, had grown quite prosperous and claimed land for a ranch. In 1845 the third expedition picked up Kit at Bents' Fort and then headed on to the Great Basin in Utah. This was the area the Mormons moved into along the Mormon Trail from Nauvoo. It was during this sojourn that the group became involved in the American settlers revolt against the Mexicans in California – known as the Bear Flag Revolt. Fremont sent Kit to Washington with news of the victory – only a matter of a few thousand miles! At a place called Socorro Kit met up with a General Stephen W. Kearney who ordered Kit to return with him to California. With Kearney
was General James H. Carleton – Carleton was later initiated into Montezuma Lodge No. 109 on the role of the Grand Lodge of Missouri –located at Santa Fe. Afterwards he affiliated to San Diego Lodge No. 35 in San Diego, California. It was primarily through the many glowing reports, made by Fremont, that Kit became a household name. In 1847 Kit stopped in Taos to see his wife. Unfortunately, Brother Charles Bent had just been killed by Mescalero Apaches in an uprising. Bent had been shot and then scalped while still alive. In fact, Bents' wife and Kit's wife and their children escaped by digging through a hole in the adobe wall of the room in which Bent had been killed. During this year, while the third regiment of the Missouri Volunteers were being recruited in Independence, there was a movement by young soldiers to form a Lodge. They approached a certain John Ralls who would later become Colonel of the regiment — he happened to be the Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Missouri. Brother Ralls signed a petition by nine Master Masons and Missouri Military Lodge No. 86 came into being on the 12th June. Shortly afterwards the regiment left for Santa Fe. A special meeting was held in Santa Fe on the 18th September and this is believed to be the first Masonic meeting to be held in the United States west of the Mississippi. The new Lodge proved to be very popular and shortly afterwards Hardin Lodge, No. 87, was formed — this was also a military Lodge. This Lodge was named after Colonel John J. Hardin whose father had been a Mason in Kentucky. In 1851 Montezuma Lodge, in Santa Fe, was chartered by the Grand Lodge of Missouri. This Lodge now holds the number one on the roll of the Grand Lodge of New Mexico. It has had many nationally and 4
world famous Brethren over the years. The Lodge worked under real frontier conditions. Indeed, its first Junior Warden, Brother Robert Brent (not Bent), was killed by Apaches on the tornado del Muerto only four months after taking office. Most of the early Lodges in New Mexico were originally on the roll of the Grand Lodge of Missouri since most settlers came by way of the Santa Fe Trail. The early Lodges in a Territory were always chartered by a Grand Lodge usually many hundreds of miles away. These early Lodges met in a variety of places â&#x20AC;&#x201D; Temperance Halls, hotels, houses, even outside! The picture of a few of the Brethren of Smithson Lodge, No. 1, on the roll of the Grand Lodge of Kansas shows this Lodge meeting outside. In the background you will see the Tyler performing his duties on horseback.
During 1854 Kit was made an Indian agent in Taos. It was, also, this year that Kit became Brother Kit. He was initiated into Montezuma Lodge No. 109 on the 29th March, passed on the 17th June and raised 5
on the 26th December. He joined the Santa Fe Lodge since there was no Lodge in Taos at the time. On 25th January 1885 Ceran St Vrain was initiated into Montezuma Lodge No. 109. It was probably Brother St Vrain, a few years later, who, along with nine other Masons, procured dispensation for Bent Lodge No. 204 at Taos from the Grand Lodge of Missouri. This Lodge was named after the late Brother Charles Bent. Kit demitted to Bent Lodge and was its founder Junior Warden. Brother St Vrain organised and led the First New Mexico Cavalry. However, when the Civil War broke out Kit took over due to Brother St Vrain's poor state of health. It was during 1861 that Brother Kit was installed as Senior Warden. There are several documented cases, during the Civil War, of Mason helping Brother Mason. On
more than one occasion a Brother uttered certain Masonic words and was aided by a Brother from the opposite side in the war. Kit's family supported the South but Kit was a supporter of the Union. Early in the war
Southern sympathisers tore down the American flag in Taos plaza. Brothers Kit and St Vrain, with others, went into the mountains east of Taos, cut down a large pine tree and took it back to Taos. They pinned an American flag to it and took it in turns to guard it. Not long before his death Brother Kit asked that the flag be allowed to fly there day and night â&#x20AC;&#x201D; and so it has ever since. Mention should be made of the battle of Glorietta, just south of Santa Fe, since two Grand Masters were involved â&#x20AC;&#x201D; one in an incident years later. Major John Chivington of the Colorado Volunteers, who was Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Colorado, was responsible for the victory which sent the Confederates back to Texas. He had been offered the post of Chaplain but turned it down because he "wanted to be a real fighting man". The other was Brother William L. Rynerson who was later to become New Mexico's second Grand Master. He became involved in a squabble with a Colonel John Slough of the Coloradans. Five years later, when Slough was Chief Justice of New Mexico and Brother Rynerson a member of the Territorial Council, Slough walked into a hotel and vulgarly assailed Brother Rynerson. Rynerson, believing Slough to be drunk, left. Next day they met again and Rynerson demanded an apology. Instead, Slough pulled out a derringer but Brother Rynerson reacted quickly by pulling out his own gun and killing Slough. Brother Rynerson was brought to trial but acquitted. Brother General Carleton, who led the Union army in New Mexico, regarded Kit as the best commander he had under him. In July 1863 Brother Kit moved to Fort Defiance, formerly Fort Canby. It had been named after a General Canby who was a member of a Lodge back east. He had been caught and killed by Indians. His body was
escorted to the Masonic Temple at Yreka, northern California, and afterwards taken back east where he was buried with full Masonic honours. The following year Brother Kit was involved in great battles with the Plains Indians. In one battle Kit was forced to retreat after his band of 400 men were attacked by up to 3,000 Indians. Brother Kit's handling of the battle was brilliant, with the Indians having the greatest force ever gathered west of the Mississippi. In comparison, a certain General George Armstrong Custer was wiped out on the 25th June 1876 at the Battle of The Little Bighorn, in Montana, by a far smaller force of Indians with fewer guns. Yet it was his foolhardy actions which were glorified by the media. The Brethren of Bent Lodge, No. 204, had been working very hard, with much help from Montezuma Lodge, but they only conferred degrees on four candidates in four years. On the 9th November 1864 the Lodge surrendered its charter. Brothers Kit, St Vrain and Alfred Bent (son of Brother Charles Bent) affiliated to Montezuma Lodge No. 109. Brother Kit resigned from the Army in 1867 through ill health and died on the 23rd May 1868 at Fort Lyon, Colorado. The following year Kit's and his wife's bodies were moved to the Kit Carson Cemetery in Taos. During this year Kit Carson Lodge No. 326 was chartered in Elizabethtown which was a small mining town in the north of New Mexico. On the 10th July 1871 William F. Cody, alias "Buffalo Bill", was raised to the degree of Master Mason in Platte Lodge No. 32 in Nebraska. He acquired his nickname from the enormous amount of bison he killed for the Union Pacific Railroad. At about the 6
time he joined Freemasonry Brother Bill was working as a civilian scout for the U.S. Army. He was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor, but Congress later took it away when it was discovered he was a civilian. Since he was the subject of dime novels he started a new career in entertainment. He toured with his "Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show", which included such stars as Annie Oakley and even Chief Sitting Bull. He was buried, in 1917, on Lookout Mountain overlooking Golden, Colorado with full Masonic honours — over 25,000 people attended his funeral. Brother Bill was a member of Euphrates Chapter, No. 15, R.A.C. He took his Mark here and took as his mark a buffalo's head. It was just before midnight on the 14th July 1881 at old Fort Sumner —by then the residence of a rancher called Peter Maxwell — a slight young man, shirtless and in stocking feet, was startled by two men who were waiting in the shadows. The young man was William H. Bonney — better known as "Billy the Kid". In one hand he had a double action six shooter and in the other he carried a long butchers knife. He was hungry and it was his intention to cut a slice of meat from a side of beef hanging on the veranda. His unexpected encounter with the two men prompted him to enter the darkened bedroom of Peter Maxwell. When he entered the darkened bedroom he asked "Who is it?" in Spanish. Almost immediately a shot rang out followed by a second. Pat Garrett, the famous sheriff of Lincoln County, had been questioning Maxwell about Billy the Kid when the Kid had entered. Recognising Billy's voice he had shot without hesitation. The second shot was unnecessary since the first had killed Bonney through the heart. The two figures outside sprang into action. They were Thomas McKinney and John W. Poe – 7
serving as special deputies for Lincoln County. Their presence vaulted them into the history books – being involved in the shooting of the West's most notorious outlaw. Of the three lawmen present Pat Garrett would become the most famous but the individual who would have the greatest influence on law and order, social development and Freemasonry was John W. Poe. He was already a Texas lawman of the highest stature and had embarked on a career which would make him one of the foremost citizens of New Mexico – and without a doubt its most distinguished Freemason. He eventually served as Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of New Mexico, and attained the highest position in many other Masonic Orders. Poe was a man of tremendous ability, diplomacy, good judgment and lived an exemplary life. It is well known that the term usually used for a cemetery in the old West was "Boot Hill". One of the most famous of Wild West towns was Deadwood, in South Dakota, so named after the dead timber on the hills surrounding it. The discovery of gold in the Black Hills brought thousands of sober, hard-working people to the area. Many of Deadwood's leading citizens were Freemasons. Before 1878 all burials were at the old Ingleside Cemetery. However, a new cemetery was needed and the leading citizens established Deadwood's new "Boot Hill". They called this new cemetery "Mount Moriah". The streets in this new cemetery were of Masonic origin –of which some names should only be lettered or halved! The most attractive part of "Mount Moriah" is the Masonic section which is located in the centre – where else? Two famous characters buried in other parts of this cemetery are James Butler Hickock, alias "Wild Bill" Hickock, and Martha Canary, alias "Calamity Jane".
In 1890 a gravestone was erected at Brother Kit Carson's grave but almost immediately souvenir hunters began chipping bits off. Several years later the Grand Lodge of New Mexico erected new gravestones and built a protective fence. The ceremony was attended by Masons representing twelve Grand Lodges. In 1909, 45 years after surrendering its charter, Masons in Taos petitioned for a new Lodge. This was granted and Bent Lodge No. 42 was chartered. One of the first projects of the new Lodge was to restore Kit's home which had fallen into dreadful disrepair. It is now a museum with thousands of visitors passing through its doors every year. This has been a quick journey through the 19th century American West highlighting a few famous Brethren and incidents involving them. But this is just the tip of the iceberg. It would be impossible to calculate the debt which Americans owe to Freemasons for opening up the West and the development of that huge country. No other institution came anywhere near influencing America as much during that period of history. Freemasons throughout the World can be justifiably proud of their ancient Brethren who lived lives that fiction could not imagine. WILD WEST FREEMASONRY (A look at 19th Century North America) by Brother Ian P. Watson, P.M., The Lodge of Journeymen Masons, No. 8 Lodge Elgin and Bruce, No. 1077 This article was sourced from the 1994 GLOS Year Book.
DID YOU KNOW? Question: Freemasonry is said to be "a beautiful system of morality, veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols." What is an allegory? Answer. Allegory is from two Greek words and means, "story within a story"--the Masonic story is told as a fact, but it presents the doctrine of immortality. Allegory, parable, fable, myth, legend, tradition, are correlative terms. The myth may be founded on fact; the legend and tradition more probably are founded on fact but the allegory, parable, fable, are not. Yet they may be "true" if "true" is not taken to mean factual. "In the night of death, hope sees a star, and love can hear the rustle of a wing" is beautifully true allegory, but not factual. All allegories may contain truth, without being fact. The allegory of the Master's Degree is not true in any factual sense, except in the historical background from the Biblical account of the building of the Temple That the Hirams were Grand Masters, that the workmen on the building were Entered Apprentices. Fellow Crafts and Master Masons; that they met in various apartments of the Temple, with different numbers required for various quorums; that the events delineated in the ceremony actually happened, are not factual statements. Yet the allegory is true in the best sense of the word for the story of Hiram is the story of the dearest hope of mankind. It is a tale told in every religion. It is affirmation, by picture, drama, story, of man's rugged faith that Job's immortal question, "If a man die, shall he live again?" must be answered in 8
the affirmative. It is a Mason's observation that truth, slain by error, will be born again; it is the crucifixion and the resurrection of the Carpenter who died between two thieves. The Masonic allegory is true in the deepest sense of truth. Question: Why is a Masonic Lodge called a "Blue Lodge?" Answer. Schools of thought give different answers. Some authorities think that as blue has from ancient Biblical times been associated with truth, with Deity, with wisdom and hope; that, as Mackey taught, the blue of the Old Testament is a translation of the Hebrew tekelet, which is derived from a root meaning perfection, blue came into Masonry as its colour by a natural association. Others believe that as our ancient brethren met on hills and in dales over which the blue vault of heaven is a ceiling; that as Jacob in his vision saw the ladder ascending from earth to heaven; that as the covering of a Lodge is the clouded canopy or starry decked heaven! These allusions seem to connote that blue, the colour of the sky, is that of all celestial attributes for which Masons strive. Man's earliest god was the sun. The sun rose, traveled, and set in a realm of blue; to associate the color with Deity was inevitable. Blue also is the color of the ocean, of mountain streams, of lakes, of good drinking water--that blue should also become emblematic of purity is equally natural. The Grand Lodge in England in 1731 changed from a previous determination that white was the Masonic colour and denominated blue as that hue. A noted English Masonic student, Fred J. W. Crowe wrote: 9
(1) That the Order of the Garter was the most famous Order of Knighthood in existence; (2)) That Freemasons, in adopting the colour "Garter blue" attempted to add to their dignity and the growing prestige of Grand Lodge officers; (3) That two Grand Masters prior to the adoption of "Garter blue" were John, Duke of Montague (Grand Master in 1721) and Charles, Duke of Richmond (Grand Master in 1724) both Knights of the Garter; (4) The Duke of St. Albans and the Earl of Chesterfield were both Craftsmen and Knights of the Garter and (5) Bro. John "Antis" (Anstis), member of University Lodge, of which Dr. Desaguliers and other Masonic notables belonged, was Register of the Order of the Garter. The two theories which find the most believers are; (1) The adoption of the colour by early operative Freemasons because of an age-old association of blue with those virtues which are peculiarly Masonic, (2) The adoption of the colour by the early Grand Lodge in imitation of the nobility, and the fame of the colour of the most famous Order of Knighthood in the world. The Questions and answers from â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Did you Knowâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; were collected from various constitutions across the world, and in no way reflect the views or thoughts of the editor and or his Lodge or Mother Constitution.
Famous Freemasons Samuel Colt â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;God created man but Samuel Colt made them equalâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;
new innovations in firearms that led the young Colt to decide he would make the "impossible gun". In 1829, Colt was sent off to boarding school. Prior to his departure he put a public display of his growing skill with pyrotechnics. On the 4th of July he announced that he would, using a homemade galvanic cell and some explosives, blow up a raft on Ware Pond. The explosion missed it's target, and was still quite impressive. Colt would impress his classmates at boarding school with pyrotechnics as well, until in 1830 when one of his displays caused a fire. Colt's father sent him off to learn the seaman's trade.
Samuel Colt was an American inventor and industrialist. Colt was born in 1814. Prior to his birth, Colt's father moved the family to Hartford to establish a textile business. Colt's mother passed away from tuberculosis when Colt was six years old. At the age of 11 Colt was indentured to a farmer in Glastonbury. He did chores and attended school. While living on the farm Colt was introduced to the book Compendium of Knowledge. The Compendium was a science book that had information about inventions, science, inventors and scientists. The book would be a major influence in Colt's life. It was reading the Compendium and hearing about
While on a voyage on the Corvo, Colt was still watching for science in every port they went to. He was also observing his surroundings. Colt noticed the way that the ships wheel interacted with the clutching mechanism and how every time the spokes of the wheel and in the clutch would always line up perfectly. Colt would claim later that it was his inspiration for the revolver. When Colt returned home in 1832, he asked his father to finance the production of two pistols and a rifle. Unfortunately the first produced pistol blew up and Colt's father refused to provide any more funding. It was then that Colt learned a new skill that would serve him well the rest of his life. Colt learned the art of the sale. To raise money for the development of his pistol Colt would put on lectures. Initially he did well, quickly though ticket sales slowed. Colt came up with the idea to put on a larger more spectacular show based on Dante's The Divine Comedy. His new show filled 10
with art and of course pyrotechnics was a huge hit and cemented his reputation as a pitchman. By 1835 Colt's prototype gun was ready to be patented. On the advise of a family friend he was advised to seek a patent in Britain first to avoid legal issues in Britain if his invention was patented in the United States first. In 1836 the Colt Patterson was patented. This early pistol was a practical application of Elisha Collier's revolving flintlock pistol, with which Colt never disagreed. Colt's adding of a locking bolt made the pistol more reliable. In 1836 in Patterson, New Jersey the Patent Arms Manufacturing of Paterson, New Jersey was chartered by the New Jersey Legislature. Colt would receive commission for each gun sold and would receive back full control of his patent if the Patent Arms were to close. This also led to another of Colt's innovations. Prior to this time the parts for pistols were made some by machine and others by hand. Colt envisioned all the parts of his pistols as being made by machine and interchangeable. This was the first assembly line. By 1843 the Patent Arms Manufacturing of Paterson, New Jersey was closed due to poor sales and other difficulties. Colt continued on though. Colt developed underwater mines and a wire that could be used underwater. Teaming with Samuel Morse, Colt's wire was used by Morse to lay telegraph cables under rivers, lakes and in one attempt under the ocean. Morse also used the power cell that Colt had developed because it was far stronger. In 1847 Captain Samuel Walker, a Texas Ranger, sought out Colt in New York. 11
Walker had first had experience with the Colt Patterson and felt the pistol was just what they needed in Texas during the Mexican-American War. Walker ordered 1,000 pistols and had requests for changes to the gun. It needed to have 6 shots and had to be able to kill a man or a horse in a single shot. Colt complied and with he help of a gunsmith produced the gun. With Colt's share of the profits he bought the machinery to make his assembly line and the Colt's Patent Fire-Arms Manufacturing Company was born and still exists today. When the American Civil War approached Colt would sell weapons to both sides. Pure and simply Colt was a capitalist and would often sell to both sides in a conflict. Colt did not see slavery as a moral issue and given time the inefficiency of slavery would cause it to fade away. Colt was accused by many Northern newspapers as being a Southern sympathizer. To quiet those rumours Colt enlisted in the Connecticut militia. His service lasted less than year though and his unit never saw a battlefield. Colt was a member of St. John's Lodge No. 4, Pythagoras Chapter No. 17 and Washington Commandery No. 1, all of Hartford, Connecticut. He died on Jan. 10, 1862 from gout, aged only 47. It is reported that his company produced 400,000 guns during his lifetime. Perhaps the most famous colt 45 gun was the â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Peacemakerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; known as the gun that won the west, and used by such people as, Buffalo Bill, George Custer, Wyatt Earp, Annie Oakley, Doc Halliday.
This article has been assembled from various sources for the famous freemasons section of the magazine. Ed.
The Foundation Stone. This Short Talk Bulletin has been adapted from a pamphlet published by the Grand Lodge A.F.& A.M. of Illinois, entitled, What Can a Mason tell a Non-Mason About Freemasonry. The ancient traditions of Freemasonry permit you to influence your qualified sons, friends and co-workers to petition for the degrees. There is absolutely no objection to a neutrally worded approach being made to a man who is considered a suitable candidate for Freemasonry. After the procedure for obtaining membership in a Masonic Lodge is explained, there can be no objection to his being reminded once that the approach was made. The potential candidate should then be left to make his own decision and come of his own free will. One of the most misunderstood of the laws of Freemasonry is the rule that prohibits the solicitation of a candidate by any Mason. Every man who enters the portals of a Masonic Lodge must come of his own free will and accord but he can only come if he knows of the opportunity. So far ingrained in our Masonic law is the rule against solicitation that it has unquestionably caused most Masons to refrain completely from discussing Freemasonry with friends and acquaintances who are not Masons. Donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t let that happen to you. The failure of the Masonic institution to make known to the public, that is to nonMasons, its principles and its purposes has, in the past, resulted in both suspicion and antagonism toward Masonry. People are
naturally inclined to be suspicious or fearful of those things of which they are ignorant. Freemasonry is not a secret society, but is rather a society which possesses certain secrets. A really secret society is one in which the membership is not known. Freemasonry is quite well known to the uninitiated. We do not attempt to hide our membership. A large percentage of our membership wears pins or rings bearing well-known emblems of the Craft. We do not meet in secret places. We meet in Temples which are well marked as Masonic - often times with neon signs bearing the square and compasses - and we meet at meetings which are quite well advertised. What is actually supposed to be secret about the institution of Freemasonry is its ritual. Dr. Mackeys 23rd Landmark, The secrecy of the Institution, embraces nothing more than its ritual, which we must conceal and never reveal. The fundamental principles of Masonry which are taught by that ritual, however, are, or could be, well known, and most of them are not even principles peculiar to the Masonic institution. The candidate for the mysteries of Masonry must always come to us of his own free will and accord, unbiased by friends and uninfluenced by mercenary motives, and he must so formally declare before he enters a Lodge room. It must be his own personal desire which as brought him to the point of petitioning for the degrees of Masonry. An explanation of the charitable and character building at-tributes of Freemasonry to a worthy and well qualified person is not solicitation. Probably the first question that would come to the mind of the uninitiated would be What is Freemasonry? We define it as a 12
progressive moral science divided into different degrees. This definition probably would not satisfy and would mean practically nothing to the Non-Mason. Freemasonry might be defined to such a person as a fraternal society which is based on certain moral and religious doctrines; the moral doctrines including Brotherly Love, Relief, Truth; Temperance, fortitude, Prudence, and Justice; and the religious doctrines comprising a belief in god and a future existence; sometimes shortened to the statement of a belief in the fatherhood of god and the brotherhood of man. There is no reason at all why this subject should not be discussed quite freely with a non-Mason. The fact of the matter is that the philosophy of Masonry is freely discussed in thousands of printed volumes available to Masons and non-Masons alike. One question which often comes from nonMasons is this: How does one become a member? Why have I not been asked to join? In any such discussion, of course, the non-Mason should be told that, unlike the members of other fraternal organizations, Masons are forbidden to solicit any one to become a member, and that any prospective member must apply of his own free will and accord; and further, that he must pass a unanimous ballot for admission. It must be free will and accord on both sides. One question which any non-Mason might ask, and which can be freely discussed with him, is the relationship of Masonry to religion and to the churches of any denomination Masonry has two fundamental religious tenets - a belief in God and a belief in a future existence, or, as it is phrased in Mackeys Landmarks, a belief in the resurrection to a future life. 13
The inquirer should be told that Masonry is not a religion in any sense of the word; but it is religious, and that no atheist can ever be made a Mason. As the Old Charges approved in 1723 put it, If he rightly understands the art, he will never be a stupid atheist nor an irreligious libertine. In those charges, under the heading of Concerning God and Religion it was said: But though in ancient times Masons were charged in every country to be of the religion of that country or nation, whatever it was, yet it is now thought more expedient only to oblige them to that religion in which all men agree, leaving their particular opinions to themselves; that is, to be good men and true. or men of honour and honesty, by whatever denominations or persuasions they may be distinguished; whereby Masonry becomes the centre of union, and the means of conciliating true friendship among persons that must else have remained at a perpetual distance. Masonry does not require membership in any church as a condition of membership in a Lodge. On the other hand, membership in any church is no bar to admission to Masonry. There is nothing in the requirements of Masonry to prevent a Roman Catholic, a Mohammedan, a Buddhist, a Mormon, a Protestant, or a member of any religious sect from becoming a Mason. Any bar is one prescribed by the church to which he may belong. For instance, while Masonry is not anti-Catholic, nevertheless until recently the Roman church had itself set up the ban of excommunication of any of its members becoming Masons, which edict had been repeated by the Popes since the year 1738. There is nothing wrong in telling a nonMason that, or telling him that the discussion of sectarian religion is prohibited
in every Masonic Lodge. One might also ask whether Masonry is a political organization. He should be told that no political discussion would be permitted in any Masonic Lodge. Here again we might refer to the Old Charges, where we are told: A Mason is to be a peaceful subject to the civil powers, wherever he resides or works, and is never to be concerned in plots and conspiracies against the peace and welfare of the nation, nor to behave himself undutiful to inferior magistrates; for as Masonry hath been always injured by war, bloodshed and confusion, so ancient kings and princes have been much disposed to encourage the Craftsmen because of their peaceableness and loyalty, whereby they practically answered the cavils of their adversaries and promoted the honour of the fraternity, which ever flourished in times of peace. In our jurisdiction, the rule that the discussion of politics and religion in Lodges is to be avoided has the force of an Ancient Landmark. Another question a non-Mason might ask is whether Masonry is a benefit society, like the many fraternal societies offering insurance and death benefits. This is something which can and certainly ought to be discussed, to avoid any misunderstanding by a prospective candidate. The inquirer should be told that we have no insurance benefits, and that while Masons are second to none in their charitable endeavours, as is evidenced by our Homes for the Aged and for Children, nevertheless it would be financially impossible for the Fraternity to care for all of its members. The minimum dues per year provide little surplus for any Lodge to render aid except to those in dire distress.
Another subject which could certainly be discussed with a non-Mason is the history of the Masonic society and its evolution from the Operatives, the builders of the Middle Ages, who created the great Gothic cathedrals, churches and other structures in the British Isles and on the continent of Europe. There are many interesting topics of Masonic history which are perfectly proper to be discussed and might possibly excite the interest of serious-minded listeners who are not Masons. The history of our Craft in America and the part which Masons played in the early history of our country is something of which we should all be justly proud. It is no secret and no Mason is prohibited from discussing it. You should not discuss the ritual. Part of the fun of Freemasonry is the excitement and adventure of the ritual. You can explain that it is based in part upon the Holy Bible and that the ceremonies of Masonry are of a serious and dignified nature, without levity or horseplay. Certainly every candidate should be told this, and should be asked not to listen to the remarks of unthinking brethren about riding the goat and similar intimations that the candidate is entering into something like a high school fraternity. Such intimations are unworthy and untrue. Explain that Freemasonry is divided into three degrees and what is required to progress. Explain about the catechism, questions and answers, and what is expected: 6,000,000 Masons learned and be sure they know they can. All they need do is ask to start their travel from friend to brother. We are proud of our fraternity and want you proudly to explain Freemasonry to the worthy and well qualified people in your sphere of influence. Sourced from â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Harashimâ&#x20AC;? publication produced by the Australia New Zealand Masonic Research Council (ANZMRC) Issue 59 April 2013
Lodge Kelvin Patrick No. 1207 A 85 Years History Of Lodge Kelvin Partick
After the 1914 - 1918 War, Freemasonry in Scotland was flourishing consequently the existing Lodges could not cope with the number of applicants wishing to join the Craft. In the year 1920 no less than 35 new lodges were Consecrated, with charters being granted by the Grand Lodge of Scotland, with 30 Lodges at home, (9 in Glasgow) and 5 overseas. It is a significant fact that Lodge Kelvin Partick, was the first to be granted a charter on the 5th February 1920. The seeds for this were sown on the 30th April 1919, when Partick St Mary's Lodge (No. 117) held a meeting where 54 E.A.'s were passed to the Fellow Craft Degree. A number of brethren attending that meeting decided that another Lodge in Partick was necessary. Now 96 years later we pay tribute to those far-seeing brethren who worked so enthusiastically and diligently to form our Lodge. The Consecration. Election and Installation of Office-bearers took place on 23 March 1920 in the Partick Burgh Hall , The ceremony was carried out by the Right Worshipful Provincial Grand Master of Glasgow assisted by Provincial Grand Lodge Officebearers. Thus was born ''Lodge Kelvin Partick No 1207", on the roll of the Grand Lodge Scotland. The Lodge had 61 Founder members represented 27 different Lodges, with 9 of these brethren eventually occupying the chair of the Lodge. Of the 61 F.M.'s, only 2 were Past Masters. The Charter Master was Bro. Robert Watson M.M. Lodge St John 15
Operative Rutherglen (No 347) and Partick St Mary's Lodge (No 117) From the Consecration in March until the A.G.M. in November. 13 Regular and 11 Special meetings were held with 89 candidates initiated. The average attendance for the first 9 months was 9l and for the first full year 1920-21 averaged 100. It was the ambition of the founder members to have a home of their own and a Building Fund was started with plans made to buy a house. Unfortunately the Brother who was the driving force behind this venture, passed away and the idea was shelved. This was followed by the depression which affected everyone, but the loyalty, zeal and enthusiasm of old and new members kept the Lodge going at a time when it might have ceased to exist. 1939 came the Second World War and once again the loyalty of the members kept things going through trying times. The meetings carried on even during air raids, and were never cancelled. The brethren's faith in a new future paid off; when after the War there was once again a demand for membership of the Lodge. In 1942 there was 40 Initiates. 1943-(69), 1945-(63), 1946-(62), then it started to level off to about 30 per year. This was held for about 16 years until l962 when numbers started to drop. The 25th Anniversary of the lodge was celebrated in l945 and by a happy coincidence the son of the Charter Master Bro. Robert Watson, occupied the chair. 1946 an association started with Lodge Troon Navigation (No 86) still which exists. In 1952 the first meeting of what was to become known as ''The Water Lodges'' took place in Troon. The Lodges involved were:Lodge Troon Navigation No 86, Lodge Clyde No 408. Lodge Neptune No 419 and Lodge Kelvin Partick No 1207. The title
because of their association with sea or rivers. Each Lodge taking it in turn to act as host to the other 3 Lodges. In February 1947 we paid tribute those brethren who had served in H.M. Forces during the War by inviting them to a inviting then to a Welcome Home Social, which was held in the Large Partick Burgh Hall, approximately 300 brethren and guests attended. This event set the pattern for out 'At Home' which we held for a few years. The activities of our members were not confined to our Lodge. Many of the brethren playing an important part in the formation of various Lodges in the Province. They occupied chairs of Lodges at home and overseas the record of our members is something we should be proud of today's always remembering that the foundation was laid. In Lodge Kelvin Partick. 1956 saw the formation of the Western District Lodges and the first Joint Meeting of the then 6 Lodges in our area, when the six Reigning Masters made Masonic History by conferring the Master Mason Degree. Lodge Thistle & Rose (No73), Partick St Mary's Lodge (No 117), Lodge St John Whiteinch (No 683), Lodge Kelvin Partick (No 1207), Lodge Western (No 1346) and Lodge Knightswood ( No 1445). On the 26 May of that year we had our first ever Joint Social event with a cruise to Rothesay and the Kyles of Bute. When the paddle steamer ''Jeannie Deans'' was chartered. We left Bridge Wharf at 9.30 am with over 900 brethren and friends on board, arriving at Rothesay about 12.l5 pm for lunch and then either sports for the children or a cruise around the Kyles. After leaving Rothesay at 5.30pm we had tea on board and music all the way home a memorable day for all who attended.
1957 was the start of a new era for the Lodge, with the exemplification and conferring of Degrees by brethren from overseas:- America and Belgium and the visitation of brethren from 1207 to Canada, New Jersey, Virginia. Pennsylvania, Bahamas, Ireland and Belgium. That year two groups of brethren from New Jersey U.S.A. visited Scotland, Lodge Kelvin Partick played host to the Masonic Kilties of New Jersey and the Scottish Compass Club ''Tuxudo Team''. At each meeting we had an attendance of 590 brethren in the Large Burgh Hall, both teams received a tremendous reception. During July 1962 Bro. George Marshall P.M. headed a deputation to Paterson New Jersey U.S.A. where under the auspices of Lodge Kelvin Partick a team exemplified the Master Mason Degree in Lodge Clifton (No 203) F&AM. Seven hundred American brethren witnessed the Degree in which members of the Lodge played leading parts. Bro. James Gibb P.M . Then 78 years of age received a spontaneous ovation for his work. During August 1964 we had a visit from the Virginian Craftsman from Highland Springs Virginia U.S.A., when a dramatised Third Degree was exemplified. In 1965 Bro. Robert P. Waddell who was Master of the Lodge 1964-65 was once again in a deputation to America and took part in the ceremonial work in Norfolk Lodge (No l) and Babcock Lodge (No 322) Virginia. The 50th Anniversary Celebrations took place on 24 March in the Partick Burgh (Mid Hall). New Regalia was dedicated by Bro. Moderator of the Presbytery of Glasgow. 50 years diplomas were presented to Bro. Alexander Young P.M . and Bro. David Donaldson. Bro. Young who was the first Senior Warden took over as W.S.W. to 16
assist the Master in closing the Lodge as he done 50 years previously. At the Anniversary Dinner which followed the usual loyal toasts were ably given and suitably replied to. Another happy evening was brought to a close by singing together 'Auld Lang Syne'. On 5 April, a Divine Service was held in St Mary's Church. Peel Street when the Provincial Grand Chaplain conducted the service. The Choir from Lodge Buchan St John Broxburn came through to Glasgow and delighted all present with their singing. As part of our Jubilee Celebrations. 30 odd Senior Members. their wives and widows were given a weeks holiday in Blackpool which was arranged by Bro.Weir of Weirs Tours. We also had one of the largest deputation's in the Lodge for sometime, when the Edinburgh City Police Masonic team accompanied by members of the Glasgow Police team visited the Lodge and conferred the Master Mason Degree, followed by an excellent harmony.
Master Mason Degree. The meeting was attended by over 400 brethren including the P.G.M. who headed the P.G.L. deputation along with the Substitute Grand Master. The following year 1987 the Lodge was again host to our American brethren, when on 6th of October the Virginian Craftsman from Richmond Virginia attended a Special Meeting of our Lodge which was held in Couper Institute. The degree team in their grey and gold cavalry uniforms exemplified the Master Mason Degree as conferred in George Washington's time. The ceremonial work was again appreciated by all brethren present. In 1988 the Lodge had to move from the Partick Burgh Hall and eventually changed our meeting place to the Masonic Hall, Ardery St., we also had to change our meeting nights from the 2nd and 4th Tuesday to the 1st and 3rd Tuesday. September through to May. Our first meeting took place in December when Bro. Richard Niven was Installed R.W.M.
During the 80's because of falling attendances, and the conditions imposed upon us by the, Halls Department. a decision was taken to revive our Building Fund, and again look at a home of our own. This fund was increased by several thousand pounds due to the efforts of our enthusiastic brethren. Over the following years offers were put in for various premises, but were out-bided by commercial developers, no doubt the brethren will continue to try and achieve this ambition.
The connection with the Lodges in Belgium,- Allegiance No 1465. and Wellington No 1385 - commenced about 1980. In 1984 Bro. George Marshall was appointed Proxy Master of Lodge Allegiance and in 1992 Bro.Gavin Lawson Proxy Master of Lodge Wellington. On Tuesday 2nd August 1990 at a Special Meeting of the Lodge brethren from both Allegiance and Wellington conferred an Entered Apprentice Degree.
During August 1986 the Masonic Kilties of New Jersey again visited Scotland and Lodge Kelvin Partick was one of the hosts. On the 6th August a Special Meeting was held in the McLellan Galleries, Sauchiehall St when the team that exemplified the
Towards the end of May Masonic history was made when under the auspices of Lodge Kelvin Partick a team of brethren headed by Bro. George Marshall R.W.M. visited Lodges in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and the Bahamas. During the first week the
team exemplified six M.M. Degrees, five in New Jersey and one in Philadelphia in one of the finest Masonic Temples in the world. This was the first time in the history of the Grand lodge of Pennsylvania going back to 1730 that a Lodge under the Scottish Constitution had been invited to exemplify a degree according to the esoteric work of the Grand Lodge of Scotland. On 29th of May 1993 St Alban Swain Lodge No 529 was opened at 1.00pm by their Master when the M.M. Degree was conferred on one of their members, later on about 6.00pm the Lodge was handed over to Bro. George Marshall R.W.M. when the team exemplified the M.M. Degree on the same brother will had been raised earlier on. This was a historic occasion, a brother receiving two M.M. Degrees in the one day.
THE STORY OF sHIBBOLETH All of us reading this article are familiar with the word shibboleth, which was taught to us during the lecture on the secrets of the second degree. Our first introduction to this odd sounding word is when we are told that it signifies plenty, and is usually depicted in a Fellow Craft Lodge by an ear of corn near a stream of water. The next usage of the word in the second degree is when during the lecture on the second degree tracing board its meaning is fully explained to us.
From the foregoing it can be seen that the brethren of Lodge Kelvin Partick No 1207 have done their very best to spread the light of Freemasonry in many parts of the world and have encouraged others to come to us and demonstrate how they carry out the ceremonial work in their own particular Province. Long may that continue.
We are taught that the story behind the word shibboleth and its origin is recorded in Book of Judges Chapter 12, verses 1-15, where two Semitic tribes the Ephraimites and the Gileadites were at war with each other. The story relates how the Gileadites defeated the Ephraimites during this great battle and set up a blockade to catch any fleeing Ephraimites. The sentries were under strict orders that if a person came their way claiming not to be an Ephraimite that person was asked to pronounce the word, shibboleth. The reason being the Ephraimites who had no sh sound in their language could not pronounce it properly but called it Sibboleth which unmasked them as enemies and cost them their lives. Scriptures inform us that on that day 2000 and forty Ephraimites were slain. As shibboleth was then used as a test word to distinguish friend from foe, King Solomon afterwards caused it to be adopted and used in a Fellow Craft Lodge.
This abridged History of Lodge Kelvin Patrick No.1207 written by Bro. George Marshall PM was sourced from their website which can be viewed by clicking here. (Please visit their site) Our thanks go to the Lodge No. 1207 whom the editor and the newsletter acknowledge to be the copyright owner of this History.
That is the simplified shibboleth and its shibboleth is really a particular expression
The following week the team exemplified another M.M. Degree in New Jersey and on the 3rd week travelled to Nassau in the Bahamas when the team conferred a M.M. Degree on a candidate of Lodge St David No.1741 (Scottish Constitution) Bro. Michael Taylor R.W.M. presiding. Again Masonic history was made, this being the first time a Lodge from Scotland had visited the Bahamas and conferred a Degree.
story behind the word Masonic usage, a linguistic password, a or pronunciation that 18
identifies a member of a group, in Masonic terms, a Fellow of the Craft. A shibboleth is a way of speaking (a pronunciation, or the use of a particular expression) that identifies someone as a member, or perhaps a nonmember, of a particular group. A group that has some kind of social power to set the standards for who belongs to the assembly: who is "in" and who is "out". So the purpose of a shibboleth is exclusionary as much as it is inclusionary: A person whose way of speaking violates a shibboleth is identified as an outsider and is thereby excluded by the group. (This phenomenon is part of the "Judge a book by its cover" tendency, apparently embedded in human cognition, and the use of language to distinguish social groups. The idea here is that some superficial characteristic is taken as a signal for how to view the person who has it--usually, "good" if the person is in the group, "bad" if the person is judged to be outside the group.) So the purpose of a shibboleth is to keep out as much as it is to allow in, and a person whose way of speaking violates a shibboleth is immediately identified as an outsider and is excluded by the group. In a Masonic context not knowing the word would exclude that person advancing from the First to the Second Degree, a Masonic shibboleth is simply a means of recognition to distinguish between those able to progress further in the noble art. However, the use of a shibboleth is not peculiar to Freemasonry and whilst it is true you might not have heard that word used outwith our Masonic community, a form of it, is there, and is used frequently to distinguish different social groups, in fact there are shibboleths all around us. A shibboleth is a way of speaking not just a 19
word, it is a pronunciation or the use of a particular expression, and there are many examples of a shibboleth which I would now like to share with you. Modern Usage Today, the term shibboleth is any word or phrase that can be used to distinguish members of a group from outsiders. The word is also sometimes used in a broader sense to mean specialized jargon, the proper use of which identifies speakers of a particular group or subculture, shibboleths can also be customs or practices, such as male circumcision. (Can you imagine the Brother Deacons asking everyone in the Lodge to prove that particular shibboleth!) As has been already noted, the first recorded shibboleth is in the Bible and was used to identify the enemy during a great battle, this method of testing a person to see whether or not they are friend or foe during time of war is a common practice and has been used down through the years by a wide variety of military personnel. Here are just a few shibboleths that have been employed in times of battle, that some of us just might have come across. LOLLAPALOOZA, this shibboleth was used throughout World War II by the United States military during the battle with Japan to try and distinguish Japanese spies. The Japanese have difficulty in pronouncing the letter ‘L’ and it would sound more like the letter ‘R’, making the shibboleth lollapalooza sound like Rorraprooza, thus distinguishing the speaker as Japanese. If the first two syllables come back as rorra, the sentry would "open fire without waiting to hear the remainder". YKSI, this is the Finnish for ‘ONE’, and during the Finnish Civil War it was used by
the Finnish white guard to determine Russians from Finns. Many Russians that were caught had changed into civilian clothes, so all those that were suspected of being Russian were interred and asked to say the word ‘yksi’. If a prisoner pronounced the word ‘juksi’ they were considered a Russian foreign fighter and was shot on the spot. Unfortunately, this particular shibboleth was not too successful, as many Slav’s or Balts who were volunteers of the white guard and unable to articulate the word were also killed. SOCZEWICA, KOLO, MIELE, MLYN, (lentil, wheel, grinds, mill) In 1312 Wladislaus the short, quelled a rebellion in Krakow which was populated mostly by Germans and Czechs, and anyone over the age of 7 who could not pronounce these four Polish words was put to death or ejected from the city. FLASH – THUNDER - WELCOME, if these three words seem slightly familiar it may be that you have heard them used in an American war film, for these were the challenge response codes used by the American forces at the Battle of Normandy during the Second World War The words were used to identify the challenger as a native English speaker and not an enemy, as the Germans would pronounce the welcome as ‘velcome’. WOOLLOOMOOLOO, was used by Australian soldiers during the Pacific campaign of the second World War to identify themselves when approaching a camp. Unlike the previous examples this is not a challenge – a response type shibboleth, but rather using a word to prove who you are before being challenged. The Australians would call out the word when they came across a strange encampment,
and if the response was gunfire, they knew that they were not amongst friends! There are many, many examples of shibboleths used during wars to determine friend from foe, and this password type of shibboleth is the one that we as masons are most familiar with, however, there are other examples that we might recognize but have never identified them as being used to distinguish members of a group. Here are some examples of shibboleths that are used by different social groups as ways of speaking. During the Victorian era in Britain the educated middle classes invented several shibboleths to set them apart from the lower classes. One of these was pronouncing the suffix ‘ing’ as it is spelled, rhyming with sing, whereas the lower classes pronounced it as in, rhyming with sin. The sophisticated middle classes knew immediately that the person using a word such as dancin’ and not dancing was not one of their own. In fact even today this type of shibboleth is still used to determine if the speaker has had a “good education.” Take the word Unionised, (spell it) this was introduced to distinguish scientists from charlatans. When reading the word aloud with no context, a scientist will always pronounce it as un-ionised, whereas a nonchemist will pronounce it union-ised, thereby exposing the imposter. So you can see, that there are different types of shibboleths used in many different types of situations, and the ones that we have looked at so far, form the same type as we are taught about it in the fellow-craft degree. But don’t you know it; there are of course many other different types of shibboleths. The next category is called Englishspeaking shibboleths. 20
FISH AND CHIPS, to you and I, the accents of Australians and New Zealanders seem very similar, but they are not, they are completely different, and the term fish and chips, is sometimes used to illustrate a major difference between the two. The New Zealand pronunciation features a shorter, clipped vowel sound as "fush and chups" but is more accurately pronounced f'sh and ch'ps with the vowel almost dropped, which the Aussies love to caricature and make fun of. The Australian pronunciation has a longer vowel sound which sounds like "feesh and cheeps" to New Zealand ears. So, an Aussie can tell if the person is a Kiwi and vice versa. Here in Scotland we use shibboleths frequently when we want to poke fun at out neighbours across the border. How many of us laugh when we hear an Englishman trying to pronounce ‘Loch,’ this always invariably comes out as ‘Lock.’ The reason being that the hard ‘ch’ is not used in standard English and the word has throughout the years become a Scottish shibboleth. Perhaps if the government of today gets its way, maybe this could be set up as a password for anyone trying to pass themselves of as Scottish at the Border!. As a youngster going to Wembley in London for the first time, I used to have great amusement in trying to get our English counterparts to say, “It’s a braw bricht moonlicht nicht, the nicht!” Little did I know then, that I was keeping up a tradition of using shibboleths which has passed down through the years as identifying the region of origin of a person. For example, in my local town, the dialect pronunciation of you and me comes out yow an mei, and if you say it wrong, it determines you as an incomer. The famous song by Brothers Ira and George Gerswin, ‘Lets call the whole thing 21
off,’ is play on shibboleths, “You say Tomahto and I say Tomayto, you say Potahto and I say Potayto.” We just didn’t know it was. So, a shibboleth in actual fact is defined as any word, or any usage of language that can identify a person’s region of origin, or identifies a person as a member of a group. For Freemasons, the concept of shibboleth is important. It forms a part of our ritual, and our Fellows of Craft are taught about an historical occurrence in which the use of shibboleths originated. It is very likely that shibboleths of some kind have been in use since the dawn of Man, but certainly the story found in Judges must be one of the first recordings of the practice. In our order, the newly admitted fellow is told of the story, but he is never told why it is important and is simply left to ponder the significance of the term, and indeed, of the event. Our Masonic Ritual is full of shibboleths, and they are very important to our Craft, they demonstrate a sense of belonging, and a means of detecting those who do not belong, and they remind us of how to know who is a mason, and who is not, and we are better for the use of them. Shibboleths are all around us and in every day use, and are more common than you might think, and come from unexpected sources. You might think you’re using a slang word to describe something, when in actual fact you are using a shibboleth. We probably use this type of shibboleth every day. More than likely, we have all failed a shibboleth test, at one time or another, and labelled an outsider and not part of a particular group. And finally, here’s a shibboleth test for you to try, say the alphabet as fast as you can, do you say the letter Z as ZEE or ZED? 76
Rays of Masonry â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Responsibility of the Worshipful Masterâ&#x20AC;? When installed the Worshipful Master's authority is complete- it is part of our Masonic Manual and Code. But as surely as we think in terms of authority in Masonry, we must also think in terms of responsibility. The Worshipful Master is the guide and the leading spirit of the lodge. The spiritual progress of the lodge depends largely upon his devotion to the Ideals of Masonry. The program of the meetings, which degree is to be conferred, the holding of special and open meetings, are all within the scope of the Master's authority, responsibility and duty.
On A Lodge Budget Ever before the Master must be the realization of his obligation to the tenets of Masonry, to the lodge's welfare of the individual member. He must have a thorough knowledge of procedure, and above all, must represent in his daily life the moral strength that reflects the teachings of the Institution.
"It is an outrage! That committee should be indicted for defaming the fair fame of Masonry!" The New Brother was indignant.
No candidate must be subjected to embarrassment or humiliation. The Master must see that nothing takes place in the conferring of any degree that debases the dignity of Masonry, or of the candidate. The responsibility rests directly upon the shoulders of the Master to see that nothing takes place which is not inconsistent with the sacred teachings of Masonry.
"That committee on the budget. They brought in a report which is to lie over a month before discussion, and I am just seething with indignation!"
Authority in Masonry means properly placed confidence and responsibility. The Master's authority and responsibility- both are complete. Dewey Wollstein 1953.
"Sounds terrible to me," agreed the Old Tiler, sympathetically. "What committee and what did it do?''
"Seethe out loud. Maybe I can seethe, too, and then there will be two of us!" suggested the Old Tiler without a smile. ''Oh, You'll seethe all right!" assured the New Brother. "The committee averaged our income from past years to find what we can expect this year. Then they laid aside a fund 22
of $1,000, subtracted the fixed charges from what is left, and apportioned the remainder among our other activities." "Isn’t that all right?" asked the Old Tiler. "You don’t understand! This committee has dared to say that we should spend only so much for entertainment, only so much for relief and charity, only so much for education!" "I must be stupid or something," puzzled the Old Tiler. "That sounds reasonable to me!" "Reasonable to decide beforehand that we can’t spend more than a certain amount for charity? For entertainment? For education? Masonry is built on the thought of relief! How can we function if we must circumscribe our charities?" "Softly, softly!" countered the Old Tiler. "You forget that Masonry is founded not only on relief but also on brotherly love and truth. If we spend all our resources on relief, where do we get the money to spend on truth and on cementing the ties of brotherly love?" "Fine words!" derided the New Brother. "But this report says that only such and such a percentage of our receipts can be spent in charity . . ." "Wait a minute!" the Old Tiler spoke sharply. "Either you didn’t listen or you couldn’t understand the report. Evidently you don’t know that the Master did me the honor to make me a member of that budget committee, so I know all about it. The budget committee says nothing about confining charity to the amount stated. It said that the average expended for charity during the past five years was so-and-so 23
much, so that we could reasonably look forward to spending a similar amount in the coming year. The figure was given to allow a basis of comparison and a decision as to how much could be spent for other purposes. "Running a lodge without a budget is like running an automobile without gasoline. By the budget we determine how and where and when we are to function. Without a budget we overplay our hand, spend too much in entertainment, not enough in relief. Without a budget we may rob our future brethren by encroaching upon our capital assets. A budget is an adviser constantly saying, ‘Go slow!’ Not all worthy projects are within our means." "You still don’t explain what we can do when our charity calls exceed the average of the past five years." The New Brother spoke less excitedly. "We will meet them, of course," snapped the Old Tiler. "No Masonic Lodge refuses a call for charity when it has the means. But if the calls for charity are twice as big as expected, then we cut down on entertainment. If we have no budget line to which to hew, we spend as much for entertainment as before, and so come out at the end of the year a loser." "But this budget cuts down on so much. We must use less or cheaper printed matter, and only a certain sum for ladies’ night instead of . . . "Instead of giving a committee of the authority to loot the lodge treasury of all that’s in it to provide free entertainment for wives and sweethearts! You said it! No man loves his wife more than I love mine, yet I am content to have the lodge entertain
her once a year with a sandwich and a cup of coffee, and undertake her entertainment on more elaborate lines myself. Don’t forget, my brother that our primary purpose is neither charity nor entertainment, and that when we make either or both the principal parts of our Masonic activities, we work against the best interests of the fraternity. "Masonry is a cultivation of love between man and man; it is education, as between heart and heart. It stands for patriotism, for freedom of thought and conscience, for a simple devoutness, for reverence, as well as for fun and frolic. Our ancient brethren found ‘refreshment’ necessary, but only when the ‘work’ was done. The ‘pay as you please’ system of too many lodges always skimps something, and it’s usually the work, not the refreshment. So I’m for the budget, and for it strong!" "So am I!" agreed the New Brother, in a very small voice. This is the sixty-fifrth article in this regular feature, ‘The Old Tiler Talks,’ each month we publish in the newsletter one of these interesting and informative pieces by Carl Claudy.
Who Was Hiram Abif? Hiram Abif plays a central role in the Third Degree ritual, with its detailed account of his life and death. Yet he is almost completely passed over in Biblical literature, which hardly even hints at the events which Masonic tradition takes so seriously. So striking is this paradox that some Masonic writers think the story is just a myth. The Leicester Research Lodge published in 1903 a study by Rev Morris Rosenbaum,
Past Provincial Grand Chaplain for Northumberland. Rosenbaum looks at the Biblical Books of Kings and Chronicles, which describe the building of the Temple and the role played by Hiram… according to Rosenbaum, two Hirams. One is Hiram, king of Tyre, King David’s friend, to whom Solomon sent a message that he intended to build a Temple to God. In I Kings chapter 5, Solomon asks for building materials. In II Chronicles 2:6 he also asks for “a man skilful to work in gold, silver, brass, iron, purple, crimson and blue, and with skill to grave all manner of gratings”. From Tyre now comes a leading artisan whose name, like the king’s, is Hiram. According to I Kings 7:13: “King Solomon sent and fetched Tiram from Tyre. He was the son of a widow of the tribe of Naphtali, and his father was a man of Tyre, a worker in brass: and he was filled with wisdom, understanding and skill, to work all works in brass”. In II Chronicles 2:12-13, King Hiram announces that he is sending “a skilful man, endued with understanding, Hiram my master craftsman, the son of a woman of the daughters of Dan, and his father was a man of Tyre, skilful to work in gold, silver, brass, iron, stone, timber, purple, blue, fine linen and crimson, also to grave any manner of graving and to devise any device, to do whatever may be set before him”. Rosenbaum sees in these passages two distinct artisans. In one source, Hiram (sometimes the name is Huram and sometimes Hirom) is basically a worker in brass: in the other he is a versatile craftsman and designer. The idea that there were two Hirams, an architect-craftsman and a mere artisan, is apparently strengthened when we see that the Hiram of Kings was the son of “a widow of the tribe of Naphtali” and the 24
Hiram of Chronicles is the son of “a woman of the daughters of Dan”. Rosenbaum also sees that in Chronicles, Hiram (i.e. one of the Hirams) seems to have come to Solomon before work on the Temple began; the Hiram of Kings arrived when the project was under way.
tribe of Naphtali, which means that whilst his mother was from Dan, his father came from Naphtali. There was only one Hiram. What about the apparently conflicting descriptions of Hiram’s capabilities? One source tells us more and one tells us less, but they both describe the same man.
One Hiram was the son of a widow. Who was his father? Chronicles mentions Hiram aviv (in the craft ritual, Abif), which is literally “his father”. Father and son, both called Hiram, were involved in the work, one as an experienced architect-craftsman, and his son as a more junior artisan.
We should also not get too excited about the words, “Hiram his father”. All it denotes is that (the one) Hiram was an expert at his trade. Av usually means father; it can also be master, ruler or chief. In Genesis 4:20-21 it means the originator of those who dwelt in tents and kept cattle, and the originator of those who played the harp and pipe. II Kings 5:13, Naaman, army captain of the king of Aram, is called “my father” – “my captain” – by his servants. Hiram “his father” means Hiram “his master craftsman”. There is also a theory that Av may be part of Hiram’s personal name, the full version of which might have been Hiramavi or something similar (compare the ancient royal name Hammurabi).
Since one Hiram is called the son of a widow, he must have come on the scene after his father’s death. Masonic tradition says that Hiram (for Rosenbaum, Hiram the father) was murdered, and there is a rabbinic legend that there was a Hiram who died in a strange way. The text that says Solomon “sent and fetched” Hiram (the son) implies that an escort was sent to bring the son back and to protect him in case anyone had designs on his life. An attractive theory? It appears so, but I believe Rosenbaum has read too much into the Biblical account, that there were not two Hirams, and that the Bible neither confirms nor denies that Hiram was murdered in the course of his work. Chronicles cannot automatically be assumed to be objective history, especially when the Chronicler told the Israelite story differently to Kings and Samuel. The idea that there was a Hiram whose mother was from Dan and another whose mother was from Naphtali does not hold water. The one clear reference to Hiram’s mother says she was from Dan; the mention of Naphtali applies to the son, not the mother: i.e. he was a widow’s son of the 25
Do the Biblical stories confirm the Masonic legend that Hiram was killed? Not precisely, though a rabbinic legend which Rosenbaum mentions says that nine people did not die in the usual way but entered Paradise alive. These included Elijah and Enoch – and Hiram, king of Tyre (Derech Eretz Zuta 1:9, Yalkut Gen. 42 and Ezek. 367). Not all commentators agree that Hiram was entitled to figure in the list, but it is possible that if a Hiram was meant it was the craftsman, not the king. A further rabbinic exposition says that when the Temple was completed all the workmen died, to prevent idolatrous rulers utilising the skills that had been honed and applied to the service of the Almighty. Hiram the master craftsman himself was amongst them, but had the distinction of going straight to Paradise and never tasting
real death (cf, Louis Ginzberg, “Legends of the Jews”, vol. 4, p. 155 and notes). Like many legends, these tales may have been embellished, and from a suggestion that the other workmen died whilst Hiram went straight to heaven, it was thought that it was Hiram who died and some of the other workmen caused his death. All this leaves us none the wiser about why the Third Degree ritual needed Hiram Abif. It is generally accepted that there were originally only two degrees and the Third Degree, and Hiram Abif, came later. In the same year as Rosenbaum’s paper, another lecture at the Leicester Lodge of Research offered an explanation. The author, W Bro WB Hextall of Derbyshire, argued that the Hiramic story was created deliberately, enlisting old legends, as an allegory of the political events of the time. The story, enacted in Masonic Lodges in the presence of Masons who got the hint, alluded to the death of Charles I and the revival of the monarchy under Charles II. The story thus illustrates Masonic involvement in the politics of the period. Later generations, unaware of this background, thought the story was – merely! – an allegory of man’s ability to rise above doubt and difficulty, even death – or, to the Christian, an indication of the death and resurrection of Jesus. As with so much of craft history, we cannot be certain. The debate is bound to continue. By Rt. Wor. Bro. Rabbi Dr Raymond Apple, AO RFD, Past Deputy Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of New South Wales & the Australian Capital Territory. Click the name to go to his website.
DID YOU KNOW? Question: How may I know that a stranger is a Mason? How should I make myself known to a stranger as a Mason? Answer: The answer is Punch's famous advice to those about to marry--"Don't!" Ninety-nine times out of a hundred the man who wears a Masonic pin, or who says that he is a Mason, actually is one. While occasionally impostors seek Masonic aid without a shadow of a right to it, their number is small compared to the millions of men in this country who are Masons in good standing. But it is unwise, and often risky to engage in loose Masonic talk with the stranger who introduces himself as a member of the Craft. Nor is there any excuse whatever for him to ask you to prove yourself a Mason. There is no need for you to know that he is a Mason. Such a necessity would arise when you or he visits a Lodge, but there the responsibility is the Master's, and it is for him to order a committee. Many newly raised brethren think that by giving some Masonic sign they should secretly make themselves known to a supposed brother, but this is a mistake. Not even when a call for Masonic help comes, is there need for a ritualistic "proof" of mutual membership. If a man is in danger or difficulty, and time is short, there is no more need to find out whether he asked for aid because he is a Mason, than there is to ascertain of the drowning man that he is a respectable citizen before you throw the rope! If the Masonic lesson of charity and help indicates that aid should be given, give it, whether the man be telling the truth or 26
not. But beware of the man who offers to "prove" himself, and does so by a ready knowledge of Masonry—and sometimes a stolen or forged good standing card--to mulct the innocent. In large cities, refer Masonic request for aid to the Board of Relief which can be reached through the Masonic Temple or Lodge. In general, do not discuss any of the Masonic secrets with strangers and pay no attention to strangers who wish to talk about Masonry's secrets with you. In that course lies safety to yourself and to the Fraternity.
Question: What are the so-called "high degrees" in Masonry? Answer: In spite of the fact that the expression is in common use, there are no "high degrees." There are only "more degrees" than those of the Symbolic Lodges of Ancient Craft Masonry. There are degrees which are, numerically, larger than the Third Degree; the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite has degrees numbered up to and including thirty-three. But a horizontal line thirty-three feet long is no "higher" than one three feet long; a hole in the ground thirty-three feet deep is no "higher" than one three feet deep. The conception of degrees as notches in a flagstaff, which are three feet and thirtythree feet high respectively, is as false as it is natural. All degrees of all rites of Masonry are dependent on the three degrees of Symbolic Masonry; no man may receive the light from either the Scottish or the York Rite unless he is a Master Mason. 27
For this reason no degree is "higher" than that of Master Mason, "and the newly raised Mason should first take time to digest what he has already learned before taking further degrees. His first duty is to his Blue Lodge, and always will be never should he forget this.
Question: What Landmarks?
Answer: An Ancient Landmark is a fundamental law of Masonry, dating from ancient times. Various Grand Lodges have "adopted" various "lists of Ancient Landmarks" and thus have given the tenets in the list the force of law in those Grand Lodges. It is probable that all English speaking Grand Lodges will agree that at least seven Masonic fundamentals are Landmarks. They are: 1. Monotheism, the sole dogma of Freemasonry. 2. Belief in immortality, the ultimate lesson of Masonic philosophy. 3. The volume of the Sacred Law, an indispensable part of the furniture of a Lodge. 4. The legend of the Third Degree. 5. Secrecy. 6. The symbolism of the operative art. 7. A Mason must be a freeborn male adult. That no subject of sectarian or political character can be discussed in a Lodge, and any Mason proposing such a subject renders himself liable to the disciplinary action of the Lodge The Questions and answers from ‘Did you Know’ were collected from various constitutions across the world, and in no way reflect the views or thoughts of the editor and or his Lodge or Mother Constitution.
PILLARS AND GLOBES, COLUMNS AND CANDLESTICKS Part 3 MAPS: MASONRY UNIVERSAL
The tradition that the globes on Solomon’s Pillars were covered with celestial and terrestrial maps is certainly post-biblical, and appears to be a piece of eighteenthcentury embroidery to the ritual. We may wonder how this interest in earthly and heavenly maps arose, and there seems to be no sure answer. The early catechisms, 1700 to 1730, all indicate a growing interest in the subject, e.g. 1. 2. 3. 4.
How high is your lodge? ….it reaches to heaven…the material heavens and the starry firmament. How deep? …to the Centre of the Earth.
There are also the more frequent questions relating to the Sun, Moon and Master Mason, with subsequent variations and expansions. (See Knoop. Jones and Hamer. The Early Masonic Catechisms, 2nd edition, 1963, Sloane MS, 1700, p 48. Dumfries No 4 MS, 1710, p 62. And Prichard’s Masonry Dissected, 1730, p 162.) These questions may well be the first pointers towards the subsequent interest in maps, and the armillary sphere of 1745, noted above, carries the subject a stage further. The Lodge Summons of the Old Dundee Lodge, dated c1750, showed three pillars, two of them surmounted by globes depicting maps of the world and the firmament. A certificate issued by the
Lodge of Antiquity in 1777 displayed, inter alia, a similar pair of maps. The 1768 edition of J. and B. has an engraved frontispiece showing the furniture and symbols of the lodge, including two pillars surmounted by globes one with rather vague map markings, and the other clearly marked with stars. The various sets of geographical globes in pairs, described above (not “pillarglobes”), all indicate a deep Masonic interest in the celestial and terrestrial globes during the eighteenth century. Preston, in his Illustrations of Masonry, 1775 edition, in the section dealing with the Seven Liberal Arts and Sciences, dwelt at some length on the globes and on the importance of astronomy and, of course, on the spiritual and moral lessons to be learned from them. All this seems to imply that the maps were beginning to appear at this time, in the verbal portions of the ritual. The introduction of maps, “celestial and terrestrial”, led to a further development which eventually gave the Craft a phrase that has become a kind of hall-mark of Freemasonry everywhere. The first hint of that expression appeared in l’Orde des Francs-Magons Trahi, 1745, which added a new question to those passages in the catechism: 1. 2. 3. 4.
And its depth? From the Surface of the Earth to the Centre. Why do you answer thus? To indicate, that Free-Masons are spread all over the Earth, and all together they form nevertheless only one Lodge.
In 1760, Three Distinct Knocks (Antient’s ritual) altered the final answer very effectively: 28
Why is your Lodge said to be from the Surface to the Centre of the Earth? Because that Masonry is Universal.
Calcott says nothing more on the subject, and I have been unable to trace any such reason for hollow pillars in eighteenthcentury Masonic ritual.
In 1762, J. & B. (Moderns’ ritual) gave the same answer, word for word. That is how we acquired the catchphrase “Masonry Universal”.
THREE LIGHTS: THREE PILLARS: THREE CANDLESTICKS
THE PILLARS AS ARCHIVES The biblical accounts of the casting of the pillars make no mention of their being cast hollow, although this may be inferred from the fact that, if they had been solid, their removal from Zeradatha and their final erection at Jerusalem would have been a quite exceptional feat of engineering. Jeremiah 3 v. 21, states that they were formed hollow, the metal being cast to a thickness of ‘four fingers’, but there is no suggestion that this was done so that the pillars might serve as “armoires”, or containers of any kind, or that Solomon used them for, storing the constitutional Rolls. Here again is a curious piece of eighteenthcentury “Masonic embroidery”, and it seems possible that this was an attempt to link the pillars of Solomon with the two earlier pillars upon which “all the sciences” had been preserved. The earliest Masonic note I have been able to find on the subject is extremely vague. In 1769, Wellins Calcott wrote in his Candid Disquisition, p 66: “…neither are the reasons why they were made hollow known to any but those who are acquainted with the arcana of the society…” This was undoubtedly intended to suggest that the hollow pillars were designed to serve some peculiarly Masonic purpose, but 29
Seventeen Masonic documents have survived, dated from 1696 to 1730, and they provide the foundation for our study of the evolution of the ritual. The earliest of them is the Edinburgh Register House MS (ERH), dated 1696, with a valuable description of the two-degree system of those days. The last of that series is Samuel Prichard’s Masonry Dissected (MD), which contains the oldest ritual of the three degrees, and the earliest version of the Hiramic legend. In all these early texts the ritual was mainly in the form of catechism, and we get some idea of its development during those thirty five years when we compare these two documents. The first contains fifteen questions and answers for the EA, and two for the “master or fellow-craft”. Masonry Dissected has 155 Q and A in all, i.e. ninety two for the EA; thirty-three for the FC; thirty for the MM. THREE LIGHTS Twelve of the oldest rituals contain a question on the “lights of the lodge”: “…Are there any lights in your lodge, yes three…”[ERH, 1696] The lights soon acquire a symbolic character, but originally they were probably candles or windows, with particular positions allocated to them, e.g. “NE, SW, and eastern passage”, or “SE, S, and SW”, etc., until we reach MD in 1730, which says the lights are three windows in the E, S and W and their purpose is “To light the Men to, at, and from their work”. MD distinguishes
between symbolical lights and “fix’d lights”, explaining that the latter are “large Candles placed on high Candlesticks”. Symbolically, several texts say that the lights represent, “the Master, Warden and fellow-craft.” Four versions say “Father, Son and Holy Ghost.” Three others say twelve lights, “Father, Son, Holy Ghost, Sun, Moon, Master-Mason, Square, Rule, Plum, Line, Mell, and Chisel”. All these are of the period c1724-26. MD says “Sun, Moon and Master-Mason” and after the question “Why so?” he answers “Sun to rule the Day, Moon the Night, and Master-Mason his Lodge”. So we trace the lights from their first appearance in our ritual up to the point where they acquire their modern symbolism. Written By Harry Carr and sourced from the Transactions of Quatuor Coronati Lodge No. 2076, UGLE vol lxiv (1962), available on the internet.
They All Came Just For Me By: Bro. Richard L. Jenkins
Something big is going on here. Or so I thought that night, As the Masons came to gather round the Great and lesser lights. One from here and one from there From places far and wide, They came to do, I knew not what, As they gathered there inside. But from each man I was greeted With a smile and voice of cheer. One said, “so you’re the candidate. The reason that we’re are here.”
I scarcely knew just what he meant, For this was my “first degree.” There must be much for them to do Before they got to me. Surely these guys would not travel for the sake of just one man. Yes, there must be much for them to do, Before my part began. The “Brother Tiler” was my company As I waited at the door To step into this brand new realm I had not known before. They shared with me the three Great Lights and some tools of the trade, That I might learn a thing or two of how a man be better made. When at last I had been seated In this brotherhood of men The Master then began to bring The meeting to an end. And with all things then completed, They stayed a little more, To eat and drink and share a laugh Before heading toward the door. But as we left I understood And then began to see. That they all came for one reason. They all came just for me. Dear brothers I pray every lodge Will make new ones like me, Feel as welcome as these brothers did, When they held my First Degree. This poem was soured from the webpage, “A Page About Freemasonry.”
A MASON BELIEVES People frequently ask "Why are you a Mason?" "What makes it last through the centuries?â&#x20AC;? or "What does a Mason believe?" These individuals, in asking these questions, are curious not about Freemasonry's ritual or so-called secrets. They merely want to know what it is about it that has attracted millions of men to it over hundreds of years. They want to know why. Freemasonry has earned its distinguished standing in history. They want to know why so many fine men of integrity and character are part of it. These individuals ask reasonable questions, and they can be answered in a simple, clear, easily understood response. Freemasonry consists of a body of men banded together for the purpose of mutual, intellectual, social and moral improvement. It endeavours to cultivate and exhibit Brotherly Love, Charity and Truth, not only to one another, but also to the world at large. A Mason believes in the Fatherhood of God requiring that His will be done and that He guides his life. A Mason believes in the great worth of the individual. Great worth not relating to wealth, position or power, but recognising that each individual is a human being, a creation of God, and a person of value. A Mason believes that each individual is under the Fatherhood of God. History has shown clearly that whenever a totalitarian government has gained power it has sought to destroy two groups within its society: (1) religious houses of worship, and (2) Masonic Lodges. Both have stood pre31
eminently for the glory of God and the worth of the individual. In the Masonic Lodge, all members meet on the same level. They are simply "Brothers" be they, bankers, doctors, farmers, lawyers, industrialists, mechanics, educators, merchants, labourers or high-ranking politicians. A Mason believes in the Brotherhood of Man under the Fatherhood of God. With all members on the same level, then there are no barriers when they meet; they are all Brothers, and treat each other as such. When Harry S. Truman, a Past Grand Master of Missouri, was President of the United States, he visited a Masonic Lodge in the District of Columbia. When someone immediately recognised him and addressed him as "Mr President", Truman immediately stopped him and said kindly but firmly, "My Brother, when I entered the door of this Lodge, I became 'Brother Truman'. When I leave through that door I will again be 'Mr President'." A Mason Believes in Brotherhood not based on wealth, position or power, but based upon Brotherly Love, Charity and Truth. A Mason believes in Charity. Freemasonry is not in any sense a benefit society, nor is it based upon calculations, which could render this possible. A Mason's charities are solely for those who have been overtaken by misfortune and adversity. A Mason believes that Charity has a much wider context than that of the giving of alms. To him, it includes the charity of thought, which overlooks the faults, and defects of his fellow man. A Mason Believes in Love of Country. He loves his Country and believes in its greatness among the world's nations. He
knows those Masonic ideals and principles are carefully and strongly woven into his Countries Constitution's. He honours his Country's flag. He obeys his County's laws and supports its leaders. A Mason believes in pride in his Country and never belittles it. A Mason believes in a just and righteous Deity, be he known as Brahma, Allah, Jehovah or Jesus. He knows that when he visits a Masonic Lodge, he will always find the Scriptures - known to Masons as the Volume of Sacred Law prominently displayed. Depending upon what land he may be in, it may be the Bible of the Christian, the Torah of the Jew, the Koran of the Mohammedan, or the Veda of the Hindu. Thus, in Masonry, there are Christians, Jews, Muslims and Hindus who meet together and pay homage to the Divine Creator whom they address as the Great Architect of the Universe. A Mason believes that a man becomes a Freemason through his own volition. He believes that no one should be asked to join its ranks and that when a man seeks admission to a Masonic Lodge, it should be of his own free will and accord. The choice should be his. One of the customs of Freemasonry is not to solicit members to its Lodges. Masonry has never waged war upon mankind to convert others to its doctrines and principles, nor has it engaged in a campaign to zealously recruit members from every position in life. Rather, Masonry has been content to build its testimony upon deeds well done, character well formed. It has not knowingly received into its Fraternal Bonds any, save those of good character, mental and physical competence. Who have sought to petition it, of one's own
free will and accord through a favourable opinion held of it, who desire knowledge and possess a deep and abiding faith in the existence of a Supreme Being. A Mason believes in being profoundly fraternal. He knows that Freemasonry is the oldest, largest and most widely known fraternal organisation on earth. He knows that Masonry survives and grows among men around the world because it seeks friendship, true manhood, mutual assistance, Brotherly love and Affection. It espouses the Golden Rule "Always treat others as you would like them to treat you." Masonry binds men together in fraternal brotherhood, under the Fatherhood of God, and in the belief in the immortality of the soul. A Mason Believes in Truth and in the constant search for it. Masonry teaches its Brethren to lay the cornerstone and place the foundations of their Masonic Temples upon the Rock of Truth. One, thus building, realises that he builds for eternity. He will carry the materials of such a moral and virtuous Temple through Infinity. It is in such a mason that God abides.
Masonry consequently presents a formulation of moral principles, acceptable to all religions, vital for man's just fulfilment. This is why it has lasted through the centuries, and this is why men are Masons.
THAT IS WHAT A MASON BELIEVES Sourced from â&#x20AC;&#x153;MoF Masonic Library.â&#x20AC;?
THE EMBLEMS OF FREEMASONRY The Third Degree
The Three Grand Masters. The three Grand Masters of Freemasonry are Solomon, King of Israel ; Hiram, King of Tyre; and Hiram Abiff, the marvellous artificer. All these were intimately associated with the building of the Temple at Jerusalem, and they form a glorious Trinity in masonry.
Solomon, King of Israel. Solomon was the son of David and Bathsheba. The name means “peaceful,” and although we have no account of his training, the phrase “The Lord loved him” implies great gifts. When Solomon succeeded to the crown, he sought to develop the ideas of his father. He consolidated the kingdom, welding its disorganised tribal divisions into a short lived Unity, by the power of an Oriental despotism. More than any other Jewish king he realised the importance of foreign alliances which were closely connected with his commercial policy. Early in his life he married Pharaoh’s daughter, and, according to one authority, at a later date he entered into wedlock with a daughter of Hiram, King of Tyre, The impression one receives of the internal condition of the Kingdom is one of great wealth, but the gold was used chiefly in unproductive forms of display. His passion for buildings was extravagant. The Temple was seven years in building, and his own house thirteen. From the religious point of view the outstanding feature of his reign is the building of the: Temple. Its elaborate magnificence was a visible proof of the triumph of Jehovah over" the Baal worship of Canaan, and of His exaltation as supreme God of the nation. Solomon evidently began his reign with high ideals, of which his dream was a natural expression, but his religion was associated with external display. The magnificence of the Temple, and the pageantry and holocausts of its dedication ministered to his own glory, no less than to God’s. His fall is connected with his polygamy and foreign wives. He not only allowed them their own worship but shared in it; the memory of his “high places” within sight of his own Temple, was preserved in the name “Mount of Offence.” Of his actual end nothing is known. He was an “old man 55 at sixty years. 33
The Pot of incense. The Pot of Incense is the emblem of a Pure Heart without which no Freemason may lope to reach the glory that lies beyond the grave and meet the Grand Architect of the Universe amid the splendours of the Lodge that is immortal. As the Pot of Incense glows with fervent heat, so should the Free- mason’s heart continually glow with gratitude to the great and beneficent Author of his existence for the manifold blessings and combats he enjoys.
The Beehive. The Beehive is an emblem of Industry, and, as such, severely reproves idleness, which is the parent of immorality and ruin. As a result of industry the Freemason enjoys the necessities and even the luxuries of life, and by diligence in labour of whatever honest kind merits the respect and esteem of men, and proves to all the world that he is not a useless drone in the busy hive of nature, but rather is constant in his high endeavours to live up to the purpose for which he was created by an Allwise and All-powerful God.
Forty - Seventh Problem of Euclid. This was an invention of our ancient Brother Pythagoras who, in his travels through Asia, Africa and Europe, was initiated into several orders of priesthood, and raised to the sublime degree of Master Mason. This wise philosopher enriched his mind abundantly in a general knowledge of things, and more especially in geometry or masonry. On this subject he drew out many problems and theorems. Among the most distinguished was this that, in any right-angled triangle, the square described upon the side subtending the right angle is equal to the squares described upon the sides which contain the right angle. In the joy of his heart at his discovery he cried Eureka! which signifies I have found it! and upon the discovery of which tradition maintains that he sacrificed a hecatomb. The problem, which is of great use in geometry, is emblematical of the symmetry and beauty of Creation and the unalterable laws of Divine wisdom. This monthly feature is taken from William Harvey’s book, “The Emblems of Freemasonry” 1918.
Until next month, Keep the faith! The Editor