Volume 10 Issue 6 No.80 October 2014
Contents Cover Story, William Hogarth and Night. Famous Freemason – Ernest Borgnine Ancient Tracing Board or Decorative Altar The Lodge of Alloa No. 69. Rays of Masonry Old Tiler Talks No. 37 The International Order of Alhambra The Deacons Jewel Duly and Truly Prepared Opening the Lodge in the name of the Almighty The Masonic Dictionary Main Website – The Significance of the All Seeing Eye
In this issue: Page 2, ‘William Hogarth and Night’ A look at ‘Hogarth’s Masonic Picture’ and a description of the night scene. Page 5, ‘Ernest Borgnine.’ A Famous Freemason. Page 10, ‘Ancient Tracing Board or Decorative Altar?’ “Discovered in the Ruins of Pompeii in 1896.” Page 11, ‘The Lodge of Alloa No. 69.’ Another History of one of our Old Scottish Lodges. Page 14, ‘Rays of Masonry’, “The Ghost of Oppression”, our Regular monthly feature. Page 15, ‘The Old Tiler Talks’. “On Secrets”, the thirty seventh in the series from Carl Claudy. Page 17, ‘The International Order of Alhambra’ Secret Societies throughout the World. Page 18, ‘The Deacons Jewel’ An explanation of why it’s a Dove! Page 20, ‘Duly and Truly Prepared’ What is meant by this phrase. Page 24, ‘Opening the Lodge in the name of the Almighty’. The thoughts of Bro. Rabbi Raymond Apple. Page 25, ‘The Masonic Dictionary’ Nine.
In the Lectures website The article for this month is ‘The Significance of the All Seeing Eye’ a look at this iconic symbol. [link] The front cover artwork is a Hogarth’s painting ‘Night.’
William Hogarth and Night. About 1732, William Hogarth, a wellknown British painter and engraver, created a series of designs for decorations at Vauxhall Gardens. In one of these series, he depicted "The Four Times of Day." These were engraved and reproduced in 1737. Hogarth was regarded as a supreme political satirist and has been called the first master and still unsurpassed author of pictorial literature. His illustrations open a window on the life and customs of the early eighteenth century in England. Today, after the passage of two and one half centuries, the pictures are still a delight to look at. The artist provided many a chuckle and guffaw for his contemporary audience by poking fun at people, institutions and every day life and in the doing also taught moral lessons. The picture "Night," from the "Times of Day" series, has become known as "Hogarth's Masonic picture," and a casual examination will reveal that the two principal characters in the picture are indeed clothed as Freemasons. Both are wearing long white aprons which completely cover their lower garments. In addition, one is wearing around his neck a ribbon or collar from which is suspended a square, the jewel of the Worshipful Master. His companion carries a sword, which would seem to indicate that he is the tiler of a lodge. A closer examination will reveal that each of the two has been wounded upon his forehead. The artist's
reason for so marking his subjects is unknown. The two persons in the lower right hand corner, who seem to be attempting to aid the occupants of the over turned stage coach, may also have been intended to have a Masonic connotation. Note that the dwarf-like character wears a wooden sword in his belt, a weapon perhaps provided by the artist as a caricature within a caricature. His companion holds a mop. The mop was, we understand, at one time a necessary Masonic tool. Meeting in rooms over taverns, it was necessary for the lodge to be drawn upon the floor with chalk. Then, to keep the form and shape thereof from becoming known to unworthy persons, someone had to mop the floor at the end of the evening to remove all traces of the designs. The Worshipful Master and his tiler, in "Night," are obviously drunk, with the latter trying to assist and support his friend and brother. In English lodges of the time it was the custom to hold "afterproceedings" following the lodge meeting, during which a series of toasts were offered and liquor flowed freely. In addition, the narrow street of Hogarth's scene is well supplied with taverns, quite possibly visited recently by the two befuddled Masons. The large cup or glass on the sign on the left is a "rummer" and so designates a tavern by that name. Brother Eric Ward wrote in 1964 in Ars Quatuor Coronatorum: "The only connection of the Rummer with the Craft, which I have been able to discover, is that a Lodge, constituted 18 August 1732 and erased in 1746, met at the 'Rummer, Charing Cross,' but removed in 1733." Likewise, pointing 2
out that the sign board facing that of the "Rummer" is inscribed "Earl of Cardigan," Brother Ward writes, "There is no evidence that any Lodge met here previous to the date of the engraving; but, from 1739-42, a Lodge which was constituted 15 April 1728 and erased in 1743 had its meetings at the 'Earl of Cardigan's Head,' Charing Cross, and from 1742-44 its place was occupied by the 'Union French' Lodge. One the whole it would not appear that any masonic memories were associated with this particular street in Hogarth's mind." Noted for his uncanny memory for detail, Hogarth certainly filled his "Night" with a variety of activities and insights into early eighteenth century London life. From a window above the barber shop, a chamber pot is being emptied into the street, the usual method of disposal of night water and other refuse during this pre-sewage system. Deflected by an extended roofline, the liquid, intentionally or unintentionally, is directed toward the head of the hapless Master, thereby inflicting upon him the traditional punishment of a Cowan. A stage coach, "The Salisbury Flyer," has broken down and its passengers are in danger of being consumed by the bonfire which blazes in the street. One of the passengers seems to be firing a gun of some sort, perhaps in the hope of attracting attention. The barber, whose sign offers "Shaving, Bleeding, Teeth Drawn with a Touch," has a late night customer for a candlelit shave. Under his window sleep some eighteenth century "street people," much as in too many of our present day cities. In the far background of the picture, the sky seems to be illuminated by a house on 3
fire, with billows of smoke filling the sky. A London newspaper of May 30, 1735 said: "Yesterday being the anniversary of the restoration of King Charles the Second, the same was observed throughout the cities of London and Westminster with the ringing of bells, firing of guns at the park and at the tower, and in the evening with bonfires and other illumination." This date is indicated by Hogarth with the oak leaves in the hats of the Worshipful Master and the little "tiler" and likewise by those over the barber's sign, at the base of his long, striped pole. The statue in the background is said to be that of Charles I. British Masonic students have found that the position of the statue, as well as the side of the street on which the respective taverns appear, does not jibe with historic facts. They have conjectured that this came about in the engraving process. If the engraver exactly copied a picture on his plate, then a print made from that plate would be reversed. To overcome this effect, the engraver sometimes did reverse the scene in the engraving, thus making the printed image to appear like the original. Whether or not Hogarth intended to depict actual persons in the picture is unknown. Some scholars have become convinced that he did, but this is not of importance to Masons of this day. He is known to have introduced real personages into his pictures, as we shall see. John Pine, his friend and fellow artist who engraved the frontispiece to Anderson's Constitutions of 1723 as well as the Lists of Lodges, was painted twice - once as a monk in "The Gate of Calais" and once in a portrait done in the style of Rembrandt.
The Reverend John T. Desauguliers, third Grand Master and by some historians credited with being the author of the ritual of the three degrees, was thought to have been the model for the preacher in "The Sleeping Congregation" and, possibly in "The Mystery of Masonry," his face seems to have been used for that of the woman sitting on a donkey. Likewise in the "Mystery of Masonry" picture was Dr. James Anderson, whose name is familiar to many for his Anderson's Constitutions of 1723 and subsequent editions. His is said to be the head protruding through the ladder. Hogarth also did straight portraits of prominent men of the time, including some Freemasons. William Hogarth was born in London in 1697 and died there in 1764. His initial training was as an engraver and his print making activity was very important throughout his career. In the late 1720's, having practiced engraving for about a decade, he began to give more serious attention to painting. Having studied in Sir John Thornhill's art school, in 1729 he married Thornhill's daughter. To earn a living, he turned to portrait painting, but soon found a more remunerative form of activity. He began to compose series of narrative pictures that were designed to appeal to a large public and were disseminated through prints. The first series, "A Harlot's Progress," was engraved in 1732. It consisted of a half-dozen pictures depicting the story of a country girl who comes to the city and falls into evil ways. The great popular success of the prints prompted him to work out other series, notably "The Rake's Progress" and "Marriage a la Mode." In series after series of paintings ant prints he relentlessly attacked the morals and
manners of the British aristocracy and middle class - their social behavior, entertainments, law courts and government. In this he was aided by a prodigious visual memory that enabled him to capture the comic character of individual poses, expressions, and habits as well as entire scenes, which he placed in theatrical settings, based in part on his own experience of the English theatre. He is thus the great originator of the satiric tradition in English art. As might be expected, as a result of Hogarth's success, his works were soon plagiarized. To protect his work and his means of living, Hogarth worked to secure passage of legislation, the Copyright Act known as Hogarth's Act of 1735, protecting designers from piracy. William Hogarth was a member of the "Hand and Apple Tree Tavern" Lodge in Little Queen Street, London, and of the Lodge at the "Bear and Harrow" Tavern. He was a Grand Steward in 1735. His father-in-law, Sir John Thornhill, was Senior Grand Warden in 1728. It helps to keep these Masonic dates in context by remembering that the Grand Lodge of England was formed in 1717, so "modern" Masonry as we know it was very young at the time. An anti-Masonic group called the Gormogons was formed about 1724 and was the subject of a Hogarth picture called "The Mystery of Masonry." Mackey says: "Gormogons: A secret society established in England in 1724, in opposition to Freemasonry. One of its rules was that no Freemason could be admitted until he was first degraded and had then renounced the Masonic order. It was absurdly and intentionally pretentious in its character, 4
claiming in ridicule of Freemasonry, a great antiquity, and pretending that it was from an ancient society in China. They seem to have flourished for but a few years."
Famous Freemasons Ernest Borgnine America’s Favourite Face
The Gormogons' picture was engraved and published by Hogarth in 1724 or 1725. Since he did not become a Mason until 1725, it is assumed that his initiation came after he created this picture and it can be reasoned that he probably would not have heaped such ridicule on Freemasonry after he was a member of the order. Aside from "Night," none of the other "Times of Day" pictures contained any Masonic elements and are, rather, simply more of the artist's sly visual comments on the mores and customs of the day. Interesting insights into these themes are found in such series as "The Rake's Progress" and "Beer Street and Gin Lane. " by Keith Arrington, FPS This article by Keith Arrington was sourced from the 1982 Philalethes magazine.
Did You Know? What is meant by “Regular Step”? Answer: Regular, in this case, means recognized or correct. The word implies that it must be made in the manner in which the candidate has been instructed. Indeed, the step is actually a part of the mode of recognition that follows it; hence the emphasis on the word regular. The above answer was answer given by W. Bro. Harry Carr, a former Secretary of Quatuor Coronati Lodge No. 2076. 5
“If you’ve got talent and perseverance, and fate is willing to lend an occasional hand, the rest will take care of itself.”
He wasn’t handsome—something he had to struggle with as an actor. It wouldn’t be hard for him to get a part as a cab driver or an army sergeant, but he would hardly be offered leading roles. He looked like every other American—just another everyday face in a crowd. As he walked down a New York street in October, 1950, he wasn’t even sure why he had gone into acting. He had been going from audition to audition, looking for jobs. He was lucky to work as an actor once a month, and he had a family to feed. If he couldn’t find more work on stage or in the movies, he knew he would have to work for a living at something—sometimes he imagined
himself working on one of the tugboats on the Hudson River or loading cargo on one of the loading docks. He was beginning to believe that the big break would never come. At the time, he certainly wouldn’t have believed that nearly sixty years later, he would be acting in his 200th screen role at the age of ninety-two, and that he would be known and loved for his acting by four generations of Americans. He certainly wouldn’t have believed that in his very near future he would co-star with some of Hollywood’s best— actors like Burt Lancaster, William Holden, Spencer Tracy, Lee Marvin, Kirk Douglas, Glenn Ford, and many others. He would have laughed out loud if he had been told then that within a dozen years he would be the star of an Emmy winning television show. He would have been seriously concerned about a person’s mental health if he or she had told him that within five years of that moment, he would be standing before the Academy, thanking them for the Oscar he had just won for Best Actor. But all of these things happened to this man because he believed he had a gift, and he had the perseverance to chase his dream of being an actor. However, he has never forgotten to thank fate for lending an occasional hand, nor has he ever failed to thank his fans for his success. He is known by many names depending on the age of those fans. Octogenarians most likely remember him as Marty. Those just eligible for social security no doubt know him as McHale. Those in their forties, remember him as Dominic Santini, the veteran helicopter pilot. And the little kids are familiar with his voice as Mermaid Man on SpongeBob SquarePants. His completely unbiased best friend for nearly
forty years, George “Goober” Lindsay, called him “one of the Great Treasures of the entertainment world.” He is
Ernest Borgnine. Ernest Borgnine was born Ermes Effron Borgnino on January 24, 1917, in Hamden, Connecticut. He was the son of Italian immigrants, Charles and Anna Borgnino. When his parents divorced when he was two years old, he and his mother went back to live in Italy, but five years later, they returned to Hamden, Connecticut, where he attended public school. After graduating from high school, Borgnine joined the United States Navy in 1935, and served six years. He was discharged in 1941. He reenlisted when the United States entered World War II and served another four years in the Navy, reaching the rank of Gunner's Mate 1st Class. He received several decorations, including the American Campaign Medal, the Good Conduct Medal, the American Defense Service Medal with Fleet Clasp, and the World War II Victory Medal. In 2004, Borgnine received the honorary rank of Chief Petty Officer, the U.S. Navy's highest ranking enlisted sailor at the time, for his support of the Navy and Navy families worldwide. After leaving the Navy, he spent a few years trying to figure out what he wanted to do. He began attending the Randall School of Drama in Hartford, Connecticut. Following graduation, he began a performance career at the famous Barter Theatre in Abingdon, Virginia. His first role on stage was as the gentleman caller in Tennessee Williams' Glass Menagerie. In 1949, he debuted on Broadway in the hit 6
play Harvey, which later became a famous movie starring Jimmy Stewart. Borgnine was married five times. In fact, since he was first married in 1949, he was never a bachelor for more than a year. His longest marriage, which has endured over thirty-five years, has been his last. His shortest, which lasted barely a month, was to Ethel Merman in 1964. He said of his marriage to Merman—“Biggest mistake of my life. I thought I was marrying Rosemary Clooney.” In 1951, Borgnine moved to Los Angeles, California, where he received his big break in 1953 playing the cruel Sergeant “Fatso” Judson in From Here to Eternity. The movie, which was a great success, helped Borgnine build a reputation as a dependable character actor although in the beginning, he usually played villains. Borgnine remembers one of the first times he was recognized, shortly after the film was released. In the movie From Here to Eternity, the actions of his character lead to the death of a fellow solider, Angelo Maggio, played by Frank Sinatra. One evening, Borgnine made an illegal lane change while driving, and was pulled over by the police. Recognizing him, the officer yelled back to his partner, “Guess who I got this time—it’s the son of a bitch who killed Frank Sinatra!” Considering the officer’s reaction, Borgnine gladly accepted the ticket and paid the fine—he thought he got off easy. Even though Borgnine’s roles were usually as heavies and villains, such as the parts he played in Johnny Guitar (1954) and Bad Day at Black Rock (1955), in 1955, he was given an opportunity to try something different, and it paid off. He starred in his 7
classic role as a warm-hearted butcher in the film Marty—a part that earned him an Academy Award for Best Actor. He was paid a paltry $5,000 to play the part, but when he was asked about it, he said, “I would have done it for nothing.” The Academy Award opened many doors for him. He appeared in many classic film roles and starred with Hollywood’s best actors. He appeared with Kirk Douglas and Tony Curtis in The Vikings, with Jimmy Steward in The Flight of the Phoenix, with Lee Marvin and Charles Bronson in The Dirty Dozen, and with William Holden in The Wild Bunch. He was part of an all-star cast that included Gene Hackman, Shelly Winters, and Roddy McDowell in the The Poseidon Adventure in 1972. But Borgnine was not just a film actor. In 1962, he was offered a part in a television pilot, Seven Against the Sea. It was planned as a dramatic wartime series reminiscent of Henry Fonda’s film Mr. Roberts. But the one hour pilot did not do as well as expected. The show was completely revamped as the situation comedy McHale’s Navy. As was the pilot, the series was set in the Pacific Theatre of World War II. It focused on the crew of PT-73, led by Lieutenant Commander Quinton McHale. If Borgnine had any qualms about doing a sit-com instead of a television drama, he never showed it. He happily played the straight-man to a superb cast of comics surrounding him, most notably, his naive bumbling second-in-command, Ensign Chuck Parker. The part made the career of the young comedian Tim Conway. Bornine said “[Conway] was always adlibbing and coming up with comic bits that
kept the show fresh and the cast on our toes. You had to be sharp to act with him.” During the series, sometimes a character would mention an unnamed commander of the PT-109. Of course, most Americans knew when the series originally aired who the wartime commander of PT-109 had been in real life—he was the President of the United States when the series debuted, John F. Kennedy. McHale’s Navy became a big hit, and aired from 1962 through 1966. Ernest Borgnine received an Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series in 1963. The series spun off into two theatrical film releases. Borgnine starred in the 1964 film version of the series. In 1965, and another film was made, McHale’s Navy Joins the Air Force, Borgnine did not appear because he was working on the film The Flight of the Phoenix. But more than thirty years later, he appeared in a cameo role on the big screen again in the 1997 remake of McHale’s Navy starring Tom Arnold. Borgnine would return to television in the 80’s co-starring with Jan-Michael Vincent as veteran helicopter pilot Dominic Santini in the action adventure series Airwolf. The series ran from 1984 to 1986. When Borgnine was in his early 80s, he decided to see the country and meet his fans, so he and his good friend, Hugo Hansen, took off in a forty-foot RV. They crossed the United States east and west, north and south. They even went up into Canada and to Alaska. “It’s a magnificent way to see our great country,” he said. In 1997, a filmmaker from Washington, D. C., Jeff Krulik, decided that seeing
America through Borgnine’s eyes would be a good subject for a documentary, so he followed Borgnine on one of his cross country adventures. They stopped and talked to people; they visited in cafes and ice cream stands. Borgnine recalls that they even got lost in a cornfield at one point. Borgnine says that to this day, he still gets letters about that documentary entitled Borgnine: On the Bus —his fans loved it. Borgnine’s great strength has been his ability to remain in the public eye over generations. He is remembered by one generation as a 1950s film actor and for his role as Marty. He is known by another generation as Quentin McHale. Yet another generation remembers him for his role in Airwolf. And Borgnine has reintroduced himself yet again to the latest generation. Since 1999, Borgnine has provided the voice for the elderly superhero Mermaid Man in the cartoon SpongeBob SquarePants. As Mermaid Man, he is once again paired up with his friend and second-in-command from McHale’s Navy, Tim Conway, who does the voice of his sidekick Barnacle Boy. Bornine said, “I bitch from time to time, but this can be a great business. How many people do you know who are still working with old colleagues after so many years?” Ernest Borgnine is still making movies. In 2007, the 90-year-old actor starred in the Hallmark Original Movie A Grandpa for Christmas. His character discovers he has a granddaughter he never knew about after his estranged daughter is injured in a car accident. He is his granddaughter’s closest relative so she comes to live with him while her mother recovers. They soon become great friends. For his performance in A Grandpa For Christmas, Borgnine 8
received a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actor. At ninety, he was the oldest Golden Globe nominee ever. For his contribution to the motion picture industry, Ernest Borgnine has received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. In 1996, he was also inducted into the Western Performers Hall of Fame at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. As of this writing, Ernest Borgnine is not yet ready to retire. Even at ninety-two, he shows no sign of slowing down. He married his fifth wife Tova in 1973. They continue to enjoy an active life in Los Angeles, California, and Ernie (as he prefers to be called) continues to work on a regular basis. He credits acting as helping to keep him young—that and another thing he remarked on in his now-famous Fox News interview in 2008. He credits his success as an effective character actor to realizing early on that acting has to come from the heart not from the head. He made three movies appearances in 2008. He is currently working on another western, Death Keeps Coming, expected to be released in 2009. This film will mark his 200th film role in his remarkable career as an actor. Will it be his last? “Not likely,” he says . . .
Illustrious Brother Ernest Borgnine tells of the difficulties he had in becoming a Mason. He did not know that at the time he became a Mason in Virginia, it was necessary to ask a Mason three times about joining before he could petition the lodge. He requested information from a friend who made no reply on two different occasions, but on the third request, his friend readily presented him with a petition and endorsed him. He was accepted without delay into the Abingdon Lodge. On November 9, 2000, he was presented with his 50-year pin by the Grand Master of Masons in Virginia, the Illustrious William Lee Holiday. It was obvious to all present at the 50-year ceremony that Brother Ernest Borgnine holds a warm and loving place in his heart for Abingdon, Virginia, where he became a Master Mason, and for its Barter Theatre where be first honed his theatrical skills. He has served the Craft with honour and distinction. Regardless of his great success, he still displays great humility and a sincere love for the Craft and his fellow man.
Todd E. Creason is an author and novelist whose work includes the award-winning nonfiction historical series Famous American Freemasons and the novels One Last Shot (2011) and A Shot After Midnight (2012). Shot to Hell (2014). Famous American Freemasons: Volume II. – Chapter 24 – used by permission from the Author. http://toddecreason.blogspot.co.uk/
The Illustrious Brother Ernest Borgnine is a member of Abingdon Lodge No. 48 in Abingdon, Virginia. He holds the 33rd degree of the Scottish Rite of Masonry and is also a member of the Shriners. The 9
Originally published on Freemasons blog on 7/8/12.
Bro. Borgnine; January 24, 1917 – July 8, 2012
Ancient Tracing Board or Decorative Altar?
square, above deaths head, with a plumb line from the angle of the square to the middle point of the crown of the head. From each arm of the square there is suspended a robe; one was scarlet, the other purple, which are distinctive colours used in the Royal Arch degree. Below the chin of the head is a butterfly, beautifully coloured, and under the butterfly is a circle, that Masonic emblem of Deity, without beginning or end. In addition to this there were found, in the same room, several articles inherent in Blue and in Royal Arch Masonry, a little urn, which is believed to be the pot of manna, a setting maul, a trowel, a spade, a small chest, thought to be an imitation of the ark of the covenant, and small staff, thought to be phallus. These evidences, potent as they are, are confirmed by the inscription over the door of the house, which is DIOGENE SEN, which means Diogenes the Mason.
In the National Museum, at Naples, there is a remarkable mosaic, which was discovered in the ruins of Pompeii, in 1896. A picture of it is reproduced here. It is a mosaic table top, or altar top, which was situated in the centre of a rectangular room, exactly as Masonic Altars have ever been erected in lodge rooms. The workmanship is excellent, and the colouring, when the discovery was made, was bright and fresh, but has probably faded some, as all the Pompeii colours have done. Mural paintings, so many of which have been found in those ruins, have all suffered the same fate. This beautiful mosaic, which is believed to be the top of the altar, shows a large
The writer gives these facts as to the Pompeii find, as he received them from Brother Hilborn. We have not been in Pompeii since 1878, when with General Grant, but the existence of the altar top may be verified by a visit to the museum at Naples.
The evidence, to an enthusiast, is convincing; to the writer they seem every bit as good, maybe better, than the evidence which Rome has accepted and propagated as to the Apostolic succession. NOTE --(See Vibert's "Freemasonry before the existence of Grand Lodges" for a different viewpoint regarding the Pompeii Mosaic.) Vibert â€“ Finlayson, in his book on the legends of the craft, figures a mosaic pavement discovered at Pompeii which he has no hesitation in claiming as the floor of a Lodge, because it includes in a symbolic design a skull and a plumb line. But as it also includes a butterfly, a wheel, a roof-tree, a soldier's travelling kit, and a beggar's travelling kit, and other obvious symbolism of life, death, and fortune, the soul and so on, I am afraid this is only one more argument from similarity; and that we have no real ground for claiming any existence prior to the Gilds we so closely resemble. Sourced from the Southchurch Masonic Study Group and Freemason Information.
The Lodge of Alloa Mark Token.
The Lodge of Alloa No. 69. Whilst ancient buildings in Alloa and surrounding district provide evidence of the industry of the operative mason from the 13th century onwards, the works were neither numerous nor substantial enough to have warranted the oversight of a local lodge. In bygone days a greater trade was had from the cutting of timber in the extensive forests of Clackmannan for use in buildings elsewhere. The labour in the district at that time may be equated with the function of our ancient brethren in the Forests of Lebanon even to the transportation of timber down the waters of the Forth. Records exists of the use of this timber in Stirling Castle and Clackmannan Tower, which was at one time part of a royal castle. By the sixteenth century the custom of forming operative mason's lodges for the erection of large buildings was well established in Scotland. Lodges in Edinburgh, Kilwinning, Stirling, Aberdeen, Glasgow and Dundee controlled the general building in these towns, and it is on record that these lodges exercised oversight over the surrounding country districts. The earliest record of masons meeting in Alloa goes back to the early 1750's when brethren from The Lodge of Stirling travelled to Alloa and there initiated brethren into the craft. At that time the Lodge in Alloa was designated a depute lodge of The Lodge of Stirling possessing
neither a name nor a number in its own right. Whilst the Alloa masons met in harmony, no degrees could be conferred without the commissioned Office Bearers of The Lodge of Stirling being present. The journey in winter from Stirling was arduous. There was no regular coach. The choice was rowing boat down the Forth, horseback or shank's pony. Visits were not frequent. A decision therefore was made to petition Grand Lodge for the formation of a lodge in Alloa. The History of The Lodge of Alloa, written by Past Masters James Saunders and Robert Wright, records the great debt it owes to The Lodge of Stirling in general, and in particular to Brothers Thomas Jack, Andrew Riddell, Tobias Bauchop and the other brethren who undertook this invaluable pioneering work. The Charter was granted 237 years ago in 1757. The exact date being the 14th of November. An anniversary which is shared by a number of other persons or events. On that date in history 1889 Nehru, India's first PM was born; 1935 King Hussein of Jordan was born; Coventry Cathedral was destroyed 1940; 1941 The Ark Royal was sunk; 1948 Prince Charles born; 1973 Princess Anne married Mark Phillips; 1757 The Lodge of Alloa No.69 was Chartered by The Grand Lodge of Scotland. The Lodge was first constituted on 31st Dec 1757 with the first candidates being initiated in 1758. Initiation fee 12/6d
Passing and Raising a further 13/6d. Total; ÂŁ1.6s.0d. (ÂŁ1.30p). The history of the Lodge records a number of events, facts and figures. 1766. French War. Payment of one guinea towards ransom of a poor brother in a French prison. Perhaps it was a Brother from Alloa who gave to France their country motto - Liberty, Equality and Fraternity. 8th Sept 1774 Hon. William Schaw Cathcart initiated. 19 years old. 2 months later in December elected Right Worshipful Master. 1807. 50th Anniversary. Napoleon in charge of France. Britain fighting Turkey, Denmark, France. First running for Ascot Gold Cup. 1857. Centenary year. Lodge clothed that day in Grand Lodge regalia, loaned for the occasion. Britain fighting China, India. Matrimonial Causes Act set up establishing divorce courts. In 1878 the RWM learned that the Grand Master Mason of England, the Prince of Wales (afterwards Edward VII) was to pass through Alloa station on his way south to Balmoral. A telegram was sent to Aberdeen requesting that His Royal Highness might receive the members of the lodge on the station platform. A reply consenting to do so was received. Word quickly spread through the town and about 4.00 in the afternoon a large crowd assembled at the station whilst the Alloa Instrumental Band played national airs. On the platform the members of the lodge, in full regalia, along with the chief Magistrates and principal residents of the town were presented to the Prince. 12
1892 Loaned Regalia to Office Bearers designate of Lodge Ben Cleuch 782. In 1952 loaned Regalia and Jewels to Lodge Ladywell 1474, Tullibody, for Consecration and Installation ceremonies. During the 1800's the esteem of Masonic Lodges within the community was such that deputations were invited to many public events, in particular that of the laying of foundation stones of public structures or bridges. The Lodge of Alloa was represented at many of these events such as: 1843 Foundation Stone Ludgate School, Alloa 1846 Foundation Stone of railway bridge over the Forth at Stirling. 1854 Foundation Stone Stirling High School 1855 Foundation Stone West Free Church, Bank St, Alloa 1861 Foundation Stone Wallace Monument 1872 Foundation Stone Burgh Chambers, Alloa 1875 Foundation Stone Burgh School, Bedford Pl, Alloa 1876 Foundation Stone Original Masonic Hall, Alloa 1882 Foundation Stone Caledonian Railway Bridge over Forth at Longcarse, Alloa. 1887 Foundation Stone of Alloa Town Hall. 1904 Notable initiation. Minister of the Parish of Alloa Dr. James Lauchlan McLean Watt. Later to become Moderator of the General Assembly of The Church of Scotland and Grand Chaplain of The Grand Lodge of Scotland. 1906 First Mark Master Masons degree. 23 Candidates. 13
Masonic Church Service. Parish Church, Alloa. 250 assembled in Lodge. 1907. 150th anniversary. Britain was not fighting at that time. Boy scouts founded by Baden Powell. 1909 Bro.George Drummond (M.M. of Lodge Kilwinning), a frequent visitor to the lodge who was now resident in Alloa presented a Fellow Craft tracing board which is still in use today. 1909 Bro. Dr.E.Dyer P.M. elected R.W.P.G.M. for Stirlingshire, an office he was to hold for 20 years. 1911 28th April. Lodge opened 8.45 am then adjourned. R.W.M. accompanied by 5 brethren then travelled to Edinburgh for laying of Foundation Stone of the current Grand Lodge building at 96 George St, Edinburgh. The lodge was resumed at 8.15 pm where the RWM presented a report of the day's proceedings. 1912 Recorded in minutes was condolences to Bro. John Millar who lost his brother Robert (a ship's engineer) on the Titanic. After the Great War ended in 1918, masonry throughout the country was proving to be very popular. 1919 Burns Supper. 180 members in attendance. Whist Drive and dance. 130 couples . 1918 84 initiates 1919 108 initiates 1920 134 initiates. 1921 122 initiates 448 initiates in 4 years. The lodge, in line with other lodges in the Province, was in a very healthy financial position. The decision was made to have a
new lodge built, as did many other lodges throughout Scotland. 1924 New lodge in Church St consecrated by Right Worshipful Provincial Grand Master Dr.E.Dyer, P.M. Meeting nights were changed from Friday to Thursday evenings, thereby freeing the premises for rental on Friday nights. 1957. The lodge celebrated it's bicentenary. In that year Harold McMillan became PM. Premium bonds were started. For 30th time in their history. Throughout the history of the lodge, meetings have taken place in various venues in Alloa. 1757 Haigs Inn at top of Broad St 1763 Purchased house in Trongate. 1767 Bro.Anderson's Inn (Presumed to be successor to Mrs.Haig. 1792 Old Ship Inn at the Shore. 1799 Crown Hotel. 1843 Royal Oak Hotel, Bedford Place. 1868 Crown Hotel. 1871 Royal Oak Hotel. 1875 New premises. Church St above Museum Hall. 1824 Masonic Hall, Church St 1988 Station Hotel 1990 Royal Oak Hotel The lodge of Alloa No.69 has a long chequered history. As with all lodges there are happy memories and a fair share of sad memories. Having looked back into history, we should now give thanks for the present and look forward to the future. From a Toast to the Lodge by Past Provincial Grand Secretary of Stirlingshire Bro. James White. Sourced from the website of the Lodge of Alloa No. 69, to whom the editor and the newsletter acknowledge to be the copyright holder.
Rays of Masonry â€œThe Ghost of Oppressionâ€? The Ghost of Oppression comes back to test its powers. Throughout the centuries Freemasonry has stood adamant and unafraid while this hideous monster has walked about in various ghastly shapes. To the Ghost of Oppression success means the death of men by bombs or through enslavement. Success means hunger, stealing the rosy cheeks of little children and leaving the vacant states of crazed minds. But always it returns to its spectral haunt with only a hallow victory. And always it reflects: There is an institution that has never shown signs of fear; an institution that has some 'mysterious force' which carries it on and on through the ages. It is difficult to understand. While I wreak destruction this institution goes about repairing, rebuilding. While I snatch food from children this institution restores health and offers shelter. While I rave about the superman, this institution speaks of the ordinary man who is the Son of Light. While I preach dogma, this institution teaches the simple doctrine- The Fatherhood of God. If I could only understand the mysterious power. I may come back by any name, at any time, in any form, but with the centuries I grow less hopeful. Faith repels all Fear.
Dewey Wollstein 1953.
"I appoint you a committee of one to see that his children are all properly murdered. No child should look at a Masonic slide and live." "Now you are kidding me." "Boy, you are kidding yourself. The only secret about a Masonic lantern slide thousands of Masons have tried to find, but none ever have. It is not to be revealed by looking at them." "I don't understand..."
On Secrets. "Someone should speak to Brother Filmore," said the New Brother, thoughtfully, sitting beside the Old Tiler. "People do speak to him- I speak to him myself," countered the Old Tiler. "I mean speak to him seriously." "I speak to him seriously. I asked him tonight how his wife was," answered the Old Tiler. "Oh, you know what I mean! I mean admonish him." "About what?" "About his carelessness of Masonic secrets. He runs the lantern and leaves the slides out where any profane can see them. He takes them home sometimes and his children can get them and..." 15
"No secrets of Freemasonry are to be learned from a Masonic lantern slide. They are sold to any one who has the price. If there was anything secret about a lantern slide, making it would be against Masonic obligations." "But you said there was a secret..." "Sure, but not a Masonic secret. Generations of Masons have tried to learn who designed them that they might slay him with ceremony and an axe. The harm done leaving Masonic lantern slides where the profane may see them will come from the poor opinion the profane gets from the Masonic slide conception of charity and brotherly love and truth and relief. Some slides representing Time counting the ringlets in the hair of the virgin give anyone with the slightest idea of art the notion that Masons are all cubists! We are trianglists or rightanglists, maybe, but not cubists! Those illustrations of brotherly love in which one fat man lays a ham-like arm lovingly about the bull-like neck of a misshapen Roman gladiator would scare any child who saw it into such a fear of the fraternity he would probably weep ever time Dad went to lodge... but as far as
giving away any Masonic secrets is concerned- piffle!" "You haven't the same reverence for the sacredness of Masonic ideas as I have." "Whoa! Boy, you have things upside down. My reverence for real Masonic secrets is second to none. Your reverence is inclusive; mine only for what is real. You wouldn't go home and tell your wife that a lodgeroom has a chair in the east, where the Master sits, that there is an Altar in the center of the lodge, or that candidates take an obligation, would you?" "Certainly not!" "I would! The scrubwomen see the lodgeroom. If they can be permitted to view its sacred outlines, I see no reason why my wife shouldn't. In lodge entertainments we don't move the Altar and women have entertained us after the lodge was closed, more than once. Any catalogue of Masonic paraphernalia advertises hoodwinks, and ours are regularly sent to the laundry, anyhow! "The real secrets of Freemasonry mean something for you and me, which is not for the uninitiated. But they are not upon lantern slides, in the size of the room, the height of the ceiling or even the place where a Worshipful Master hangs his hat! Circumspection in speaking of the things of the lodge, as opposed to the spirit of a lodge, is necessary only that no false idea be given the outsider. If it were possible to photograph men receiving the first degree, the profane might laugh, unappreciative of the symbolism they saw. But do you really think the value of Masonic secrets would be decreased by such an exhibition?
"A number of men have written exposes of Masonry. Half true, half manufactured, no one is interested in them. In second-hand bookstores you can pick them up for a few cents. They are in every Masonic library. If what they contained really harmed the fraternity, would the librarians not destroy them?" "The secrets of Freemasonry are carried in your heart; they are not what you see with your eyes or touch with your fingers. There is nothing secret about an organ, or the music books the choir uses, or the gavel the Master holds in his hand, nor yet the books in which the Secretary records who has paid his dues. The shape and form and furniture of a lodge is not a secret, nor the time of meetings nor the name of the Chaplain! The lantern slide conceals no secret worth knowing, nor does the chart to which the lecturer points nor even the carpet laid down the second degree. These are all but a means of putting a picture in your mind and it is the meaning of that picture which must be sacredly kept, not the means which put it there." "Then you don't think someone ought to speak to Brother Filmore seriously!" "No, but there was a brother in this lodge who had to be spoken to seriously. I did it.." "Why, who was it?" asked the New Brother anxiously. "You!" said the Old Tiler. This is the thirty seventh article in this regular feature, â€˜The Old Tiler Talks,â€™ each month we publish in the newsletter one of these interesting and informative pieces by Carl Claudy.
Fraternal & Secret Societies of the World ‘The International Order of the Alhambra’
Despite the lack of recognition, many princes of the Church are or have been members, including Pope Paul VI and Pope John Paul II. Even with such patronage, membership has declined, from over 13,000 in the 1960s, to about 11,000 in 1978, and under 10,000 by the early 1990s. The three major purposes of the order are: To promote social and fraternal association among its members. To commemorate Catholic historic places, persons or events of international significance, and to assist and provide means to further the cause of the handicapped and mentally retarded.
The International Order of the Alhambra was founded in 1904, in Brooklyn, New York, as the recreational wing of the Knights of Columbus, though it also dedicates itself to the preservation of Roman Catholic historical sites and to charitable works. It exists in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Japan, and the West Indies. Members must be Third- and Fourth-Degree members of the Knights of Columbus, which is to say that they must also be male, Catholic, and over 18. Membership is by invitation only, and there were 9,500 members in 1989. The International Order of the Alhambra was founded by a small group of Catholic men in Brooklyn and is to the Knights of Columbus what the Shriners are to the freemasons, though it has never been formally recognized by the Knights of Columbus. 17
The order’s initiation rite is based on the Christian re-conquest of Spain, and it takes its name from Alhambra, the surrender of which in 1492 marked the end of the Moorish occupation, which had begun in 711. This is the only one of the degrees that is worked, but it is very elaborate; only the larger “caravans” (lodges) are likely to have all the paraphernalia and costumes required, though the Baltimore headquarters will rent initiation equipment to smaller caravans who wish to carry out an initiation. The regalia is based on that of the Shriners; in parades, Alhambra members (Sir Nobles) wear colorful pseudo-Moorish dress and are traditionally accompanied by camels. Most caravans have names derived from Moorish Spain, including Salamanca, Algeciras, Guzera, and Zamora; the first caravan, which is still in existence, was called Abd er Rahman. In 1990 there were about 200 caravans, which are largely autonomous; the ruling body of a caravan is an elected Grand Divan headed by a
Grand Commander. Overall administration is carried out by a 15-member Council of Viziers (the Supreme Divan) elected at a biennial convention. The international constitution and by-laws is called Al-Sunna and consists of a mixture of general regulations and lofty aspirations. (The use of the term “AlSunna” could be deeply offensive to a devout Moslem. Al-Sunna (literally “the form” or “the way”) is an adjunct to alQuran (the Koran) based on traditions of the words and deeds of the Prophet and forms the basis of Islamic law for the Sunni tradition.) The organization has contributed handsomely to programs for the mentally retarded and the physically handicapped, often with special emphasis on the needs of children, again like the Shriners, it provides an opportunity for its members to engage in often boisterous jollifications while contributing to and raising money for good works. These societies which are featured in the newsletter do really exist; there are virtually hundreds of them throughout the World.
Did You Know? On The Level To a Freemason, on the level means just that — all Freemasons are Brothers who meet on the same level, regardless of their social or economic status outside the lodge. Princes, presidents, and captains of business are no better or more important than bus drivers, plumbers, and paper boys when they sit in the lodge together. Masonry does not detract from a man’s accomplishments, nor does it exalt him above his Brothers because of his position outside the Lodge.
The Deacons Jewel
Each officer of a Masonic lodge is invested with a jewel which in some particular manner indicates the function of his office, his duty to the lodge, or his responsibility to his fellow-members. It is a most interesting study to trace the history, the moral and the teachings of each jewel, the square of the Master, the level and plumb-rule of the Wardens, the crossed keys of the Treasurer, the crossed pens of the Secretary, and the cornucopia of the Stewards. The meaning of some are quite obvious. Others lead us into more extensive, yet more interesting detail, and it would well repay any effort of the individual brother to seek out for himself by question, by reading, by thought and meditation, the place of each jewel not only in its Masonic application, but in its everyday use. Sources of information are plentiful, encyclopaedias, dictionaries, the Masonic writers whose books may be had from the Grand Lodge library, the V.0.S.L. itself will give you information and inspiration in your search, and those things which you seek out and discover for yourself are yours forever. As an example, let us 18
consider for a moment the jewel of the deacons attached to the collar of office and usually incorporated in the ornament at the point of their wand. It is a dove with out-stretched wings, bearing in its beak an olive branch. Instantly we all recognize it as the "dove of peace" but why is it the jewel of the Deacons' office? Let us cast back in our minds and recall the most familiar story of the dove. It is a story everyone knows, the story of the flood, and we read it in a few verses in the V.0.S.L., in the 8th chapter of Genesis. Noah and his family with two of every kind of animal were sealed in the ark. Then the storms came and with shrieking wind and lashing rain the heavens opened, and for forty days and forty nights the waters beat down and covered the face of the earth, an experience of the utmost terror and confusion when the whole world was destroyed. The waters prevailed on the earth a hundred and fifty days. The rain stopped on the fortieth day and the term subsided, but still the scene was one of utter loneliness and desolation with nothing but a limitless waste of water extending as far as the eye could see. Gradually, in weary waiting, the waters receded and Noah sent out a raven which flew to and fro, finding no place to alight. Also he sent a dove which came back as there was "no rest for the sole of her foot." Seven days later Noah again sent forth the dove, which once more came back, but with an olive leaf, showing that the waters had subsided, at least enough to uncover the tops of trees. The dove was Noah's messenger sent out to bring back news. The first time it came back the message was that the waters still 19
covered the face of the earth. The second time it brought back an olive leaf, a message that the storm was over, the waters subsided, and a sign of the restoration of peace and harmony between an outraged God and a purged earth. From this circumstance, the olive branch has ever been considered, among civilized nations at least, the "emblem of peace." To understand the significance of the jewel of the deacons, let us refer to the opening ceremonies. The W.M. asks the duties of the deacons, and the answer is "To carry the messages and commands of the Worshipful Master..." Hence the Deacons are messengers, and no jewel could be more fitting than the dove. Finally, a lodge is above all others, a place of peace and harmony, hence the olive branch, Thus the Deacons, by their jewel, are messengers of peace and harmony and goodwill, all outstanding characteristics of our Masonic institution. Author Unknown
The Work The gavel sounds and all is still: The Master speaks, proclaims his will: Each one obeys, takes up his tools. Inspects the plan, consults the rules: With trowel and level, plumb and square, Each stone is set exactly where The plan provides, the drawing shows And day by day the Temple grows: The porch is finished, pillars placed; The strands of net-work interlaced; The chambers furnished, pavement laid, The sacred vessels all displayed: The walls are standing straight and true; The roof is on, the labour through: The Master speaks, The work is done: The gavel sounds, God calls us home
Duly and Truly Prepared. Q. Where were you first prepared to be a Mason? A. In my heart. Q. Where were you next prepared? A. In a room adjacent to a regularly constituted lodge of Free and Accepted Masons. Q. How were you prepared? A. By being divested of all metals, neither naked nor clothed, barefoot nor shod, hood-winked, with a cable tow around my neck; in which condition I was conducted to a door of a Lodge by a friend whom I afterwards found to be a brother. It is thus that Masonry throws back the curtain on the first scene of an absorbing drama entitled a "New Way of Life", and this evening I wish to discuss with you the meaning and import behind the words -Duly and Truly Prepared. The view which we obtain in the opening scene is indeed a picture of mortality in its feeblest state--unarmed and penniless, blind and practically naked, and by degrees we are conducted as pious enquirers along a pathway designed to end in a glorious immortality. The preparation of a candidate and the plight in which he is admitted to the Masonic stage is meant to typify the helpless, destitute, blind and ignorant condition of a newly born babe. But initiation means much more than this, by all the authorities it is agreed to be a
symbolical representation of the process by which not only the child had been brought into existence and educated into a scholarly and refined man but that by which the race has been brought out of savagery and barbarism into civilization. The state in which a man enters an entered apprentice lodge fittingly typifies the barbaric not to say savage state in which man originally moved when he knew not the use of metals and out of which he has been brought to his present condition, it is precisely this that has led to the application of the term barbarian to the uninitiated. The preparation of the candidate is also symbolical of that equality of all men which is one of the fundamental doctrines of our society. He is stripped of every thing that would indicate any difference in fashion, station or wealth; all things in themselves evidences of artificial distinctions are obliterated. The onlooker could not tell whether the candidate who is duly and truly prepared is prince or pauper-a millionaire or a beggar. On the other hand, the candidate is not deprived of any of these adornments of heart, mind or character which mark the only real superiority of one man over another, and which have favourably recommended him as acceptable to the Craft. The preparation of the candidate for initiation in Masonry is entirely symbolic. It varies in the different degrees and accordingly the symbolism is found to vary also. Not being arbitrary nor unmeaning but on the contrary, conventional and full of signification it cannot be abridged or added to in any of its denials without affecting its esoteric design. Haywood suggests "That in a symbolic sense the 20
entered apprentice may be likened to a human embryo about to be born into a new world--he does not have power over himself and he does not know anything about the new life upon which he is entering, and therefore it is necessary that he follow his guides with implicit and unquestioning obedience, for not otherwise can he advance a step. From one end to another accordingly the great note struck is "Obedience"--it is impressed upon the heart of the initiate by every device of symbolism, by every device of ceremony." Every initiated person whether prince, peer or peasant is bound at least once in his Masonic career to pass through this emblematical feature of his profession. He may not like it. He may object to it but has not option; he cannot avoid it. If he seriously intends to become a Mason he must endure it with patience as an indispensable condition of his tenure. Nor has anyone when the right has been completely conferred every found just reason to question its propriety. Such a proceeding is probably utterly impossible for the ceremony bears a truly beautiful analogy to the customs of all primitive peoples so that its origin may fairly be described as cradled in the depths of antiquity. It is interesting to note that great care was taken of the condition of every Israelite who entered the temple for divine worship. The Talmudic treatise, entitled Baracoth, which contains instructions as to the ritual worship among the Jews lays down the following rules for the guidance of all who visit the temple "No man shall go into the temple with his staff nor with his shoes on his feet nor with his outer garment, nor with money tied up in his purse." There are certain ceremonial usages in Freemasonry which thus furnish 21
a striking coincidence with this old Jewish custom. Being in Masonic ignorance, a seeker after light and a representative of the natural untaught man it is fitting that the candidate be made to walk in darkness by wearing a hoodwink which Mackey has described, "As a symbol of secrecy, silence, darkness in which the mysteries of our art should be preserved form the unhallowed gaze of the profane." The use of the blindfold goes far back in the history of secret societies even to the ancient mysteries in which the candidate was usually made to enter the sanctuary with eyes covered. Our own use of the hoodwink is found to be in harmony with these ancient usages. Its purpose is not to hide or conceal anything of value from the candidate; it has another significance in that it symbolizes the fact that the candidate is yet in darkness and he is expected to prepare his inmost mind for the reception of those revelations which are the true light of Freemasonry. Freemasonry every stands among men with lighted torch prepared to reveal the true meaning of brotherhood lives in the bonds of a grater and eternal life. Freemasonry in answer to its critics does not create anything too fine, good, mysterious or secret for this rough word; it merely emphasizes the fact that there are eternal verities. In other words, it provides a lamp for the feet of men enabling them to remove the hoodwink of jealousy, fear, hatred and unkindness and all the other myriad of obstructions to brotherhood in order that
a man may seek and see the fulfilment of the realization. "Behold how good and pleasant a thing it is for brethren to dwell together in unity." The hoodwink that is bound over a man's eyes is not the real hoodwink but only the symbol thereof; the real hoodwink and it is that which Freemasonry undertakes to remove from a man's eyes, is all that anti-social and unhuman spirit out of which grow the things that "crib., cabin and confine" and thus result in the imperfect life. The origin of the cable tow is shrouded in mystery. It appears probably that operative masons used it to keep control of the body of the entered apprentice. It is found that wherever man has introduced the noose, rope or cable tow it signifies obedience. Mackey defines a cable tow "as a rope or line for drawing or leading." The word itself is probably derived from the Dutch "cabel" meaning a great rope and the Saxon "tow" meaning to draw. Masonic scholars are in disagreement as to the symbolic meaning properly attached to our use of the cable tow. Those who content that its device is merely to control the body are refuted by the very definite symbolism attaching to its use in the 2nd and 3rd degrees. To some it represents the emblem of the natural untaught man's bondage to ignorance and lust--which it is the mission of the Masonry to remove. By others it is regarded as merely a simple and natural tie which unites the fraternity while yet another group believe it is a mystic tie binding the initiate to God--to the Order-and to Righteousness. Buck, a distinguished Masonic writer, treats of the cable tow as follows. "He (the candidate) is restrained now (after the removal of the cable tow) by the voluntary obligations
taken, all of which indicate the necessity of constant vigilance and self-control. In place of the former command--"Thou shalt not" comes the voluntary pledge "I will". The result is to replace outer restraint by inward restraint--without annulling or altering a single moral precept. The slave who formerly obeyed a master through fear, now voluntarily serves through love. The difference is between a bondman and a freeman and the result to the candidate can hardly be put in words when it is once realized. It should not come as a surprise that a special preparation for initiation is required. The soldier's uniform allows for his greatest freedom or action--the bridegroom dresses in his best--the knight of old put on shining armor when going into battle. Likewise men tend to prepare in some way to the best of their ability for any new experience. The preparation of a candidate is one of the most delicate duties we have to perform and care should be taken in appointing the officer who should always bear in mind that "That which is not permitable among gentlemen should be impossible among Masons." As Carl Claudy puts it "In the Entered Apprentice degree the Initiate is introduced at once to one of the most solemn, most inspiring and most beautiful ceremonies in all Freemasonry. He meets at the very outset a symbolism which should impress him very deeply for all time, that Freemasonry is not of the earth earthy but is concerned almost entirely with the Spirit." Alas, all too few realize at the time the loveliness which they encounter. They are over anxious and concerned with what a "degree" may be rather than what it is. The 22
candidate may be too nervous and overwrought as a result of idle tales of unthinking brethren who may seek to impress a would-be initiate with visions, with horseplay and terrorism, as a part of the degree. Nevertheless, the candidate should experience without understanding, know without comprehending, feel without sensing a moment which in after years will come back to him as a fragrant memory of beauty." We should ever remember that many men undoubtedly desire to become members of the Craft without any intelligent appreciation of what they ask. To a great many of the profane Masonry is just another secret society--Good fellows mostly--I'd like to belong-- Careless talk by coarse grained men of Masonic "goats" and initiation "tortures" have soiled and perverted the true ideal of Freemasonry in many minds. But says Claudy, "Even the unthinking are brought to a sudden pause when they meet the question, "Do you believe in God?" Men would hardly start thus to play the goats. Duly and Truly Prepared--the phrase is adequately summarized by J.D. Buck in his essay "The new Age". "Reflect a moment on the condition of the candidate on first entering the Lodge Room. He is not only in darkness going to he knows not where to meet he knows not what, and guided solely by the J.D., but he hears the marks of abject slavery. He is spared the shame of nakedness and the pride of apparel, and his feet are neither shod nor bare. He is poor and penniless, no external thing to help or recommend him. The old life with all its accessories has dropped from his as completely as though he were dead. He is to enter on a new life in a new world. His intrinsic character alone is to determine his 23
progress and his future status. If he is worthy and well qualified--duly and truly prepared--for this and he understands and appreciates what follows in symbols, ceremonies and instruction the old life will be dead in him forever. I submit that a definite responsibility and obligation rests on this Lodge and all lodges wheresoever they may be. A duty to see that even as the candidate is duly and truly prepared so also are we--so that the plan placed on the trestle-board may be interpreted with solemnity and imagination, to the end that the first impressions, on the mind and heart of him who is required to be duly and truly prepared, may open new vistas and unfold new beauties to the eager initiate who from henceforth with us shall journey as a brother to "that undiscovered country from whose bourne no traveller ever returns." Sourced from the Skirret website. This article was prepared by Bro. H.C. Oxley, P.D.D.G.M., Grand Lodge Of Nova Scotia.
THE PILGRIM WAY But once I pass this way, And then--no more. But once--and then, the Silent Door Swings on its hinges,-- Opens ... closes,-And no more I pass this way. So while I may, With all my might, I will essay Sweet comfort and delight, To all I meet upon the Pilgrim Way. For no man travels twice The Great Highway, That climbs through Darkness up to Light, Through Night, To Day.
Opening the Lodge in the Name of the Almighty In each of the craft degrees the Lodge is opened and closed in the name of God. In the First Degree, He is the Great Architect of the Universe, in the Second Degree the Grand Geometrician of the Universe, and in the Third Degree the Most High. Some old rituals also opened the Lodge in the name of Holy St John. Which St John is not certain. What entitles a Worshipful Master to say, “In the name of the GAOTU (or other title for God), I now declare this Lodge duly open”, or a Senior Warden to say, “In the name of the GAOTU (or other title for God)… I declare this Lodge closed”? It could be argued with little warrant that a theoretical chain of authority stretching back to the Israelite monarchy enables a Master or Senior Warden to speak in the name of King Solomon, but how can anyone believe that God himself empowered Masonic officers to speak on His behalf? How can any Lodge officer speak as if he has a spiritual status akin to ordination? In seeking an answer we have to look at Scripture passages that contain the words, “in the name of the Lord”. The dozens of such instances do not imply that whoever is speaking does so as God’s agent with express Divine sanction. Generally the context is a prayer calling upon the name of God. Probably the most relevant passage is King Solomon’s prayer of dedication of the Temple (I Kings 8:20), which reads: “I have built the house for the name of the Lord, the God of Israel”. In line with this, what should be said in opening a Lodge meeting ought to be something like this: “I
declare the Lodge dedicated to the name (or open for the service) of the GAOTU”. This does not make the occasion a formal act of religious worship. It is as little a technical expression of denominational commitment as is the use of the words “In God we trust” on American currency notes. The old ritual which not only mentioned God but Holy St John (without saying which one – the Baptist? The Evangelist? The Almoner?) added, “forbidding all cursing and swearing, whispering, and all profane Discourse whatsoever”. Harry Carr suggests in his “Freemason at Work”, 1977, that this phrase need not be taken literally; its aim may have been to scare the brethren and warn them to behave with decorum and dignity, ie, “Act in Lodge as you would in church. Otherwise God (and the saints) will call you to account.” This also suggests that we place little importance on the fact that when Lodges took on names, some called themselves after saints. It may have been a matter of social routine, emerging in days when church-going was taken more seriously than today. Similarly, the St John’s cards of good wishes which Masters used to send their brethren derived their name from the fact that they were dated 27 December, St John’s Day. On the main issue itself, the best way of handling the opening and closing the Lodge in the name of God is to amend the ritual and leave out these phrases altogether and use the Grand Orient formula, “in (by) virtue of the powers invested in my by my brethren…”. 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.
THE MASONIC DICTIONARY Nine If the number three was celebrated among the ancient sages, that of three times three had no less celebrity; because, according to them, each of the three elements which constitute our bodies is ternary: the water containing earth and fire; the earth containing igneous and aqueous particles; and the fire being tempered by globules of water and terrestrial corpuscles which serve to feed it. No one of the three elements being entirely separated from the others, all material beings composed of these three elements, whereof each is triple, may be designated by the figurative number of three times three, which has become the symbol of all formations of bodies. Hence the name of ninth envelop given to matter. Every material extension, every circular line, has for its representative sign the number nine among the Pythagoreans, who had observed the property which this number possesses of reproducing itself incessantly and entire in every multiplication; thus offering to the mind a very striking emblem of matter, which is incessantly composed before our eyes, after having undergone a thousand decompositions. The number nine was consecrated to the Spheres and the Muses. It is the sign of every circumference; because a circle or 360 degrees is equal to nine, that is to say, 3+6+0=9. Nevertheless, the ancients regarded this number with a sort of terror; they considered it a bad presage; as the symbol of versatility, of change, and the emblem of the frailty of human affairs. Wherefore they avoided all numbers where nine appears, and chiefly 81, the produce of nine multiplied by itself, and the addition whereof, 8+1, again presents the number nine. As the figure of the number six was the symbol of the terrestrial globe, animated by a Divine Spirit, the figure of the number nine symbolized the earth, under the influence of the Evil Principle; and thence the terror it inspired. Nevertheless, according to the Cabalists, the character nine symbolizes the generative egg, or the image of a little globular being, from whose lower side seems to flow its spirit of life. The Ennead, signifying an aggregate of nine thongs or persons, is the first square of unequal numbers. Every one is aware of the singular properties of the number nine, which, multiplied by itself or any other number whatever, gives a result whose final sum is always nine, or always divisible by nine. Nine multiplied by each of the ordinary numbers, produces an arithmetical progression, each member whereof, composed of two figures, presents a remarkable fact; for example: 1 . 2 . 3 . 4 . 5 . 6 . 7 . 8 . 9 . 10 9 . 18 . 27 . 36 . 45 . 54 . 63 . 72 . 81 . 90 The first line of figures gives the regular series, from 1 to 10. The second reproduces this line doubly; first ascending from the first figure of 18, and then returning from the second figure of 81. In Freemasonry, nine derives its value from its being the product of three multiplied into itself, and consequently in Masonic language the number nine is always denoted by the expression three times three. For a similar reason, 27, which is 3 times 9, and 81, which is 9 times 9, are esteemed as sacred numbers in the advanced Degrees. Source â€“ Mackays Masonic Encyclopaedia
Until next month, Keep the faith! The Editor.
Published on Sep 29, 2014