The Builder Magazine

November 1917 – Volume III – Number 11


Part 2

Continued from Part 1

.xx Next Month: December 1917
Previous Month: October 1917www General Index


By Bro. Haslett P. Burke, J.G.W., Colorado

Address Before The Grand Lodge of Colorado, 1917

SINCE the Grand Lodge of Colorado was organized in 1861, when Grand Master Chivington appointed Brother C.F. Holly as its first Grand Orator, more than fifty of his successors have passed across this stage and delivered as many annual addresses. Many of these men have fully measured up to the title they temporarily bore. Many have stood high in commercial or professional life, many were polished scholars and eloquent speakers, all devout and faithful Masons. Since the revival of 1717, in almost all of the Grand Jurisdictions established throughout the civilized world, like addresses have been delivered by equally capable and qualified brethren. Meanwhile, students and historians without number have written and spoken upon every conceivable phase of the fraternity or subject of interest to it. In the light of these facts, no combination of presumption and assurance could hope to present to this audience anything "new or never said before," and I am not ambitious even to make the attempt. If I can apply a few very old lessons to new and bewildering conditions, can drink and give you to drink again from springs as clear and cool as when our predecessors sought them for refreshment two centuries ago, I shall be satisfied.

It is customary, I know, on such occasions to find no fault with Freemasonry, to sketch with the glowing tints of a Colorado sunset the glories of its past, and paint with a brush which might have splashed the rainbow across the heavens our faith in its future. But, while it is permissible to the lover to linger rapturously over real or fancied lineaments, the faithful surgeon must cut the cancer, and this morning I hold the scalpel.

Our national ship of state was constructed and piloted through the tempests of her first voyages by men who exemplified in their lives the homely virtues taught by our fraternity. This commonwealth was won from the wilderness and her foundations laid as firm as the granite of her everlasting hills by men from the same mould. The greatest dangers which today menace our national well-being are due to the decay of that rugged character which was the chief glory of our pioneers, and in no state of this union have the diseases attendant upon that decay been more manifest than in our own.

We learn so much in home and shop and street, we read so much in books and magazines and daily press of the frightful calamity which now shakes the earth, that one might well wish within these peaceful walls to hear no word of war. But its shadow is omnipresent, and in speaking to thoughtful and earnest men, members of a vast organization whose nerves reach every center of national life, I think it neither wise nor desirable to ignore the presence of the skeleton at the feast.

While we meet here in a peace that passeth understanding, in the midst of a material prosperity almost slothful in its fulness, the most sickening human slaughter since time began drenches a continent in blood and pollutes the air of a quarter of the globe with rotting corpses. That titanic struggle has now raged with increasing fury for three long years, and since our Grand Master directed the lights of our last annual communication extinguished, Columbia has been swept into the maelstrom, which has now engulfed more than a score of sovereign states. In seven of these Freemasonry is a recognized institution of unquestioned standing, with a membership of approximately three and a half millions, and, while exceptions doubtless exist, I think it may well be asserted as the rule in each of them, as in our own, that in every community where a lodge has been erected the moulders of thought and leaders of action are to be found around its altar.

This madness would never have descended upon mankind or, having done so, would long since have passed away, but for the fact that statesmen holding in their hands the future of mighty races have never learned or have forgotten the lessons we try to teach to Entered Apprentice, Fellow Craft and Master Mason.

If these things be true, then this hour demands rather the vehement and fiery tongue of a Savanarola than the logic of a lawyer or the calm consideration of a judge.

There are 19,000 Masons in the state of Colorado, and some 1,700,000 in the United States, and if activity consists in maintaining organizations and conferring degrees, then our lodges are active. If perfection in ritualistic work, speeches full of admiration for the order and devotion to its principles, the faithful collection and disbursement of its funds, or occasional acts of charity mean progress, then we are keeping step with humanity; but if the preservation of peace and the promotion of universal brotherhood is our chief mission on earth, who shall deny that we have met a temporary reverse? Is this reverse to be noted only as a world war has enveloped the great Masonic nations, or is it manifest in the smaller affairs of state and community? Isn't the stream running turbid where it should be the purest – at its very source – in the fraternal relationships of brethren of the same city and the same lodge? I need not answer that question. Too many of you have answered it for me in your hearts already. It seems to me that a new baptism is essential to fraternal salvation – not in Germany alone, with her 60,000 Masons, whom we so short a time ago recognized, nor in France with her thousands whom we have never recognized, but also in the United States and in Colorado. The very spirit of the brotherhood forbids that we engage as an organization in political or military propaganda. We can only teach the lessons which should guide the individual Mason in the path of duty, leaving their application to his judgement and discretion. This little marble on which we whirl through limitless space is in God's crucible today; it is being re-moulded for a brighter era. If Masonry is to justify its claims and vindicate the hopes of its children, it is one hour past high twelve.

Whatever fancies we may have heretofore indulged concerning the near approach of the millennium, the immediate past must have taught us how slow and painful is the climb from the swamps of the elemental to the peaks of the ideal. Despite the desperate struggle through all the centuries since the naked hands of scholars and philosophers, blackened in the fires of persecution, began to push back the dark ages from the face of Europe, it still at times seems true that – "We are very slightly changed From the semi-apes who ranged India's prehistoric clay; Whoso drew the longest bow Ran his brother down, you know, As we run men down today."

The dangers which threaten us are not far to seek; they lurk at our lodge room doors; their remedy involves no profound wisdom, no revolutionary measures.

"The statues of our stately fortune Are sculptured by the chisel – not the ax!"

Hand us the tools of the craft and the work of the craftsmen and let us try some of the specimens.

Trooping through the door of our preparation rooms we find an ever increasing company composed of those from whose faces is missing the stamp of high intelligence, in whose eyes the torch of education has lighted no fires and whose halting steps are led by friendly suggestion or quickened by the hope of gain. Have committees forgotten to report whether these have "sufficient education and intelligence to understand and value the doctrines and tenets of Freemasonry"? Did the Senior Deacon demand of them if they came "unbiased by improper solicitation and uninfluenced by mercenary motives" ? When they answered the enquiry, did they know that "truth is a divine attribute and the foundation of every virtue"? Has not bitter experience, no less than the language of the ritualist, yet taught us that "It is better that no workmen be added to the roll than even one unworthy foot allowed to cross the threshold" ?

The shiftless beggar on our streets, the criminal who filches for his living the labor of others, the open apostle of the easiest way, are not the only violators of the commandment "Six days shalt thou labour" – these rarely wear the square or use the compass – but it is otherwise with the idle rich, the workman who watches the clock, the maker of shoddy, the man who leans but never stands. What do they here ? Have they never heard that "The bee hive is an emblem of industry and recommends the practice of that virtue to every created being" ? Was the injunction that "our necessary vocations are on no account to be neglected" omitted when they stole past ?

What of the canker of loose life and crumbling standards, these breaking family ties, these grinding wheels in our divorce courts, these rapidly multiplying commercial crimes for which the law does not always provide a penalty? Apply to these the working tools which were the favorite implements of our puritan forefathers. Does not the square still inculcate morality and the plumb rectitude of life and conduct?

Where is the responsibility for that spirit of lawlessness which, until the grim god of War stalked upon the stage, seemed at times ready to shatter our constitutions and dissolve the social compact – a spirit that manifests itself in church and school and state, in commerce, industry and politics – a spirit which claimed the protection of majorities while it repudiated the obligations of minorities, that vaunted its democracy while it fostered anarchy, that here, where its forehead could almost touch the blue vault of heaven, covered a state with obloquy, that today actuates those who seek to extort shameful profit from their country's plight by cornering the food stuffs of a people, fomenting race riots in populous cities or paralyzing the national arm by strikes in shipping industries and the manufactures of war munitions ? Have we ceased to "recommend to our inferiors obedience and submission, to our equals courtesy and affability, and to our superiors kindness and condescension," or do such recommendations now fall on deaf ears? If we forget that "in the state we are to be quiet and peaceful citizens, true to our government and just to our country," that we are "not to countenance disloyalty or rebellion, but patiently submit to legal authority and conform with cheerfulness to the government of the country in which we live," we might better stretch forth impious hands and tear our starry banner from the nation's capitol. Not every act of treason is punishable by statute.

"Justice is that standard of right which enables us to render to every man his just due, without distinction," and it should be the "invariable practice of every Mason never to deviate from the minutest principles thereof." When Louis XIII of France said to his great minister who sought a hearing, "This nor place nor season," the Cardinal answered, "For Justice all place a temple and all season summer." To a defiance of this social fundamental is directly traceable the cataclysm which has engulfed humanity. The attempt first in private life and relations and next in public and international to substitute for it the brigands' creed –

"The good old rule, the simple plan, That they should take who have the power And they should keep who can."

Do we desire to understand just how deep some of earth's rulers have sunk in that mire, we have but to recall that it was a successor to that monarch who took for his motto, "Let Justice be done though the world perish" who was so ready at the dictates of expediency to treat his plighted word but as the idle wind and his most solemn covenant as a scrap of paper.

Are there slackers among us in this crisis – men who feel the tugging of domestic strings which never hampered them before, who can not neglect their usual vocations for the public good when those vocations have heretofore prospered in other hands, who shrink from the struggle and who fear the future? Let them be reminded that "Fortitude is that noble and steady purpose of mind whereby we are enabled to undergo any pain, peril or danger when prudentially deemed advisable." It smooths the roughest road, scatters the darkest clouds and nerves the weakest arm. It is the virtue most needed in this nation today, for –

"Fiends of water and earth and fire Are baffled and beaten by the ire Of a dauntless human will."

Men of the mystic tie, this is the time and place to polish up these working tools, to get back to first principles, to renew acquaintance with those primary lessons upon which this order rests and teach them to the world "by the regularity of our own behavior." However false some may at times have been, however careless others, this great society could not have lived through the centuries, could not rise today in all its power and majesty, had not the vast majority of its sons been faithful.

Keeping honour bright and courage high – those "qualities that eagle-plume mens' souls," – holding firm that faith under the name of which our ancient brethren are said to have worshipped Deity, – faith to friend and family and flag, – treading the daily path in earnestness, temperance and simplicity, meeting all men upon the level of equality before God, holding all in that brotherly love which is "the foundation and capstone, the cement and glory of this fraternity," our ideal still must be that mythical Masonic hero whom we once represented. "Let us emulate his trust;" so may these Masonic virtues, not jeweled emblems or beribboned parchments, designate us as Free and Accepted Masons.

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By Bro. WM. F. Kuhn, P. G. M., Missouri

(Delivered at the Bi-Centennial Observance of the Grand Lodge of Missouri)

The formation of the Grand Lodge of England, on St. John's Day in June, 1717, is the base point on which the Masonic surveyor places his compass; from which he obtains his level, and lays his chains to plat the field of Masonic History. It is the observation point on which the Masonic Historian stands, as he looks backward into the mists of uncertainties and speculation, and on which he looks forward through two hundred years of recorded growth and achievements. This basic point lies just this side of tradition and uncertainty.

The Freemasonry of today is not that of 1717; neither was the Freemasonry of 1717 that of the traditional past; but through it all there runs a life that has pushed itself upward and forward from an undifferentiated mass into a differentiated, definite unity, unto a reality possessed of a personality, with unlimited potentialities. Whatever may have been its origin, wherever it may have arisen, is secondary to the great fact, that Freemasonry is here, and is a living thing, throbbing and pulsating with inestimable efficacy. In its successive growth, it was never a revival, but always an evolution.

To the question, Whence came Freemasonry ? there have been many answers. Some are purely fantastic, others clearly absurd, while many show deep research and study. But even here, there is necessarily an element of conjecture, and until more reliable data are found, this uncertainty will remain. The history and origin of Freemasonry must be traced by certain fundamentals peculiar to it. These lie in its special symbolism, its laws and its ethical and religious conceptions. In this research, the Masonic student should be warned against two classes of blind guides: the wild-eyed Masonic archaeologist, and the fantastic Masonic symbologist. There is no limit in time or space for either of them, when vagary and fancy seizes the reins and drives them on in a furious pace. In studying the origin of Freemasonry, we must make the distinction between a mere secret society and a brotherhood. A secret society is the outgrowth of primitive minds and primitive conditions. A brotherhood is the product of culture and enlightenment. A secret society hedges itself about in a cloak of mystery, superstition and curiosity. A brotherhood has no secrets or mysteries, but bears within it a common bond of mutual helpfulness and a stimulus to investigation in the broad field of intellectual, moral-and spiritual development.

I admit that to some Freemasons, or rather to some men who are members of a Masonic Lodge, Freemasonry is a mere secret society, but let us make the clear distinction that Freemasonry is not such, but that it is a Brotherhood, without mystery, whose germ has clearly and persistently been pushing upward to a greater and fuller recognition of what Life means in all its relations. While Freemasonry has in it the obsolete parts of a secret society, indices of its evolution, yet these rudimentary remnants do not make or constitute Freemasonry.

The Masonic student who would trace Freemasonry to some mere secret society has plenty of fantastic material. It is an historical fact, that secret societies have always existed in great multiplicity among the most primitive people and savages. It appears as an aboriginal instinct. These secret societies seem to have a common origin in the "Men's House" of the aborigines. In these men's houses gradually arose certain secret ceremonies, even degrees, typifying Youth, Manhood, and Old Age, often attended with barbarous rites of torture and mutilation. In some of the African, Australian and Hebrides Societies the candidate received a "New Name," and he was taught an esoteric speech. In some a hideous representation of death and the resurrection was presented, even some modern paraphernalia was used, such as masks, "Bull-roarers" and other devices and equipments to impress the candidate with the important lessons. In passing, I might add that the "Bull-roarers" was an instrument capable of making a prodigious noise. The only counterpart to a Bull-roarer in Freemasonry today, is the Jubulum found in some Masonic Lodges.

The following taken from "Primitive Secret Societies" – Webster, is illuminating: "The process which converts puberty institutions into secret societies of peoples more advanced in culture, seems, in general, to be that of the gradual shrinkage of the earliest and democratic organizations, consisting of all the members of the tribe. The outcome of this process, on the one hand, is a limitation of the membership of the organization to those who are able to satisfy the necessary entrance requirements, and, on the other hand, the establishment of a fraternity so formed of various degrees through which the candidate may pass in succession. With the fuller development of secret society characteristics, these degrees became more numerous, and passage through them more costly. The members of the higher degrees forming an inner circle of picked initiates. These control the organization in their own interests. The best examples of this practice are to be sought in the Australian and African Tribes." It will not require a wide stretch of the imagination to find some analogy of thought between primitive minds and some modern thinkers and their methods.

Some form of secret and magical societies have always existed among the aborigines of all countries. The snake dance of the Hopi Tribe is a part of one of these ceremonies. Their existence with their secret signs has caused some writers to imagine that Freemasonry existed among the American Indians and among the several tribes of the Philippines.

The Mysteries of the classic period of Greece and Rome are to some extent kindred to the secret societies of the aborigines. The Mysteries of Eleusis, of Dionysus, of Mithra, of Osiris, of Demeter, etc., embodied more culture and philosophy and some of the best and greatest minds of that or any other age were members thereof. Yet all these Mysteries were hedged about with certain profound secrets and occultism known and communicated to the adept only. The central idea of all of them was the presentation in a dramatic, allegorical ceremony, life, death and immortality. This ceremony was monotheistic in its elaboration and strongly approached the doctrine of the Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of Man. The effect and influence of these Mysteries upon the minds of men would have been greater and more beneficent, if these societies had not labored under the delusion that symbol and allegory were means to conceal rather than to reveal. These Mysteries never arose above the mental conception found in mere occult secret societies. The advent of Christianity into Greece and Rome wrote "Finis" after the history of the Mysteries.

If Freemasonry contained no more than wonderful secrets, symbols, allegories, signs, words and degrees, the Masonic Archaeologist would have little trouble in tracing its ancestry to the secret societies of the aborigines of Australia, Fiji Islanders, to the North American Indian or to the Great Mysteries. Symbols and symbolism are as old as man. It is the primeval, yet universal language of the world. Symbols and symbolism are not peculiar to any nation, peoples, secret societies or brotherhoods, whether primitive, medieval or modern. Symbols and symbolism are not bound down by fast rules and regulations, hence a man with a symbol can have the extreme satisfaction, that as a free moral agent, he can see in it, and through it, more things in Heaven and earth than are dreamed by common mortals. Some of the most amusing stunts on the Masonic vaudeville stage are performed by the Freemason with a symbol.

The point, the circle, line, plummet, square, level, trowel, and hammer; these implements of theoretical and practical architecture have always been a fruitful source of symbolism. The implement and its symbolism have been a matter of evolution. The cave man, as he slowly evolved to a higher stage of intelligence, began to use some crude implements in the erection of his simple house of stone. A piece of flint or a stick may have served as a trowel to fill the crevices of his house with mud. This simple instrument evolved into the modern trowel of the operative Mason of today. The shape of the modern trowel is based purely on its practicability, and not on any supposed geometrical law. The maul, possibly the oldest operative instrument, has become a hammer or a gavel. The plummet, level, and square are incident to the development of architecture and other geometrical sciences. It does not follow, that because certain operatives used these instruments, that they were Freemasons. The discovery of these instruments in old ruins, or pictures there of cut or painted on old monuments, walls, or obelisks, do not prove anything as to the history of Freemasonry. Because a Freemason has a thigh bone, does not prove that an Egyptian mummy was a Freemason, because a thigh bone was discovered in him. It is related that a Freemason, with a Moslem pin on the lapel of his coat and a combination watch charm of the double eagle, cross and crown, dangling from his vest, accidentally happened on some Egyptologists, as they uncovered the grave of a man of the late stone age; in the grave were the remains of the man, food and other things usually found in such tombs, also a stone hammer with a wooden handle attached by withes; when the Freemason saw the hammer he exclaimed: "Eureka, this man was a Freemason and the Master of his Lodge, because here is his gavel." This incident may not be true, but it is in keeping with some of the eloquence dispensed from Masonic platform and Masonic papers about "The great antiquity of our great and magnificent Order."

The symbolism based on the implements of the operative, is equally ancient and runs through the literature of the greatest teachers of ancient and modern times. The Bible is rich in such symbolism. The Prophet Amos said: "I will set a plumb line in the midst of my people Israel." In Proverbs we find: "When he set the compass on the face of the deep I was there." Ezekiel in prophetic vision saw a "City four square." In Second Kings, it is recorded that Jehovah "Will stretch over Jerusalem a line of Samaria, and the plummet of the House of Ahab." St. Peter said: "Ye also are living stones." In the prophesies of Isaiah we find: "Judgement also will I lay to the line and righteousness to the plummet," and Zachariah said: "For they shall rejoice and shall see the plummet in the hands of Zerubbabel." These are only a few quotations. There are many other examples of beautiful and impressive symbols used by the Old and New Testament writers. This geometrical and architectural symbolism runs through all literature, ancient and modern, secular and religious. Imagery, symbols, allegory, and trope are the beauty and sublimity of Biblical literature. The purpose and use of symbolism among all great religious teachers was to make clear, to elucidate, to make plain, but never to hide or conceal great truths and precepts. Christ was prolific in the use of symbols, especially in allegorical form. His parables and allegories are remarkable for their pertinence and graphic in their power to present moral and religious truths with clearness and comprehension. He never used them to cast a metaphysical fog over his listeners.

This extensive use of symbolism in literature does not make it Masonic, neither must we in our zeal claim that because Amos, Isaiah, Zachariah and St. Peter used the symbolism found in our ritual of today, they must have been Freemasons. Symbolism based on the tool of the operative or on geometrical figures does not prove, in itself, Masonic descent, any more than secret words, signs and grips prove Masonic genealogy.

If secret societies had existed from primitive ages and symbolism is coextensive and coequal with human thought, where lies the genesis of Freemasonry? The answer to this question has been the subject of much controversy and research. The most satisfactory answers can be found in Vols. 1, 2 and 3 of Mackey's History, Gould's History, but especially in that little incomparable book, "The Builders," by Reverend Joseph F. Newton.

Certain analogies exist between secret societies, brotherhoods, cults, and mysteries, and even with the Church. These analogies do not prove a common origin, but they establish the fact that men, psychologically, think alike. There may be shades of difference, but on all great issues and truths, these opinions blend into a composite whole. Gregariousness is an instinct common to man and animals. We love companionship. We love kindred spirits, and in it lies the secret of brotherhood. Gregariousness with a fondness for the mysterious, coupled with a little leaven of superstition, is the father of the secret societies and the Mysteries. It may be stated as axiomatic, that the more primitive the intellectual and moral development of man, the more do secret signs, words, grips, and awe-inspiring mysteries appeal to him. It is for this reason that only certain phases of Freemasonry appeal to certain members. It is stating a Scriptural truism to say, that as a Freemason thinks in his heart, and is able to comprehend in his mind, so is Freemasonry to him.

The symbolism, the laws, and the lofty ethical and religious principles, found in Freemasonry, point indubitably to an origin in a cultured religious society of Cathedral Builders in England. There is no evidence that such a society of builders existed in England prior to the Norman Conquest, in the eleventh century. There were builders who wrought in stone and timber prior to this time, but these Gilds or Societies did not specialize in the building of churches or cathedrals. In a classical article on architecture in the Encyclopedia Britannica, the following pertinent statement occurs: "The existing Roman remains show that there was quite enough architecture and decorative art introduced into England by the Romans to have formed a school of Masonic sculptors and builders, if the civilization of the people had been sufficient to make them desire it. Such a School can hardly be said to have been formed, if we look at the few and comparatively rude remains of buildings certainly erected before the Norman Conquest." The same authority further states that: "When Roman Architecture ceased, for nearly seven hundred years, nearly every building was ecclesiastical." The study of architecture clearly established the fact that no school of Masonic architecture existed prior to the eleventh century; after that, until near the end of the seventeenth century, such a school flourished, as indicated by the large number of ecclesiastical structures erected. It must also be remembered that the oldest document in reference to Freemasonry is the Halliwell Poem, dated sometime in the fourteenth century. It is evident, without going into detail, that a fraternity of Cathedral Builders came into existence with Gothic architecture from the eleventh to the twelfth century. The membership was made up of skilled workmen, not only in the practical, but in the theoretical art of architecture, and all its cognate sciences. Whence came the men who formed such a fraternity may find its solution in the existence of former societies like the Roman Collegia and the Comacine Masters.

The fraternity of Cathedral Builders was a fraternity erected, possibly, on the remains of former similar organizations, and this new fraternity was the beginning of Freemasonry of today. But what of the assembly of Masons held in York in 926? So far as this assembly relates to Freemasonry, it is a myth. But while the holding of such an assembly is only legendary, it can not be said that no such an assembly was ever held. I am inclined to believe that such an assembly was held, but it was of the "Rough stone Masons" and in no sense an assembly of the Cathedral or Ecclesiastical Builders.

Intellectually, in as far as it refers to the Fellows of the Craft and the Masters of this Fraternity of Cathedral Builders, they were of an advanced type. The culture and enlightenment of the age found expression in these Cathedrals. Their wondrous beauty, symmetry, harmony, ornamentation and color bear witness of the skill, intelligence and scientific attainments of the members. Such work can not come from the illiterate or unskilled, but from minds trained in the sciences of architecture, sculpture and art. Gothic Architecture (sometimes called Christian Architecture) brought into use the highest skill in the practical and theoretical science of building. The key note of the artisan was "Stability, Utility, Beauty." It can be readily seen why Euclid, the great geometrician, figured so prominently in the old manuscripts, and it has also appeared a mystery why Pythagoras was dragged, as if by the ears, into modern Freemasonry, and Euclid and Archimedes, the two great prominent thinkers in practical and theoretical geometry, have been excluded. Intellectually, the Freemason of the Cathedral Builders was an adept in the sciences.

The Rules and Regulations, by which the Craft was governed, might be said to be an application of the Golden Rule. The ethics of these rules and regulations stand undimmed in the centuries, and may be summed up in this: That it is the duty of a Freemason "To do justly, to love mercy and to walk humbly before God." It has been well said: "If as an ethic of life, these laws seem simple and rudimentary, they are none the less fundamental, and they remain to this day the only gate and way by which those must enter who would go up to the House of the Lord." To be convinced of this statement, read these Rules and Regulations as found in the old Manuscripts; they are individual to Freemasonry.

Freemasonry stands preeminent in its moral and religious teachings. It stands alone among secular institutions in the purity and exalted spirit in its religious conceptions. If there is any evidence, above all others, that connects Freemasonry with the Cathedral Builders, it is this golden thread of ethics and religion. Architecture is but the expression of religion in its highest development and it has been well said: "Architecture has had its origin in religious feeling and emotions, that its noblest monuments among the Pagan nations of antiquity, were the temples to their gods, as well as those of the Christian nations." A prominent writer on architecture says: "With the Christian faith there rose those forms of beauty unknown to the Pagan, which culminated in the glories of Lincoln and Canterbury." The spirit of the First Crusade is manifest in this new architecture and finds expression in the religious tenets of the members. Their creed was Christian and Trinitarian. In nearly all of the sixty or more copies of the "Old Charges" the following formula of belief, or slight modification thereof, is set forth: "In the name of the Great and Holy God, the Wisdom of the Son and the goodness of the Holy Ghost, three persons in One, be with us now and ever. Amen." This invocation was always given in their Lodges and also read to the neophyte. This Trinitarian Creed was peculiar to the Cathedral Builders and remains so even under the formation of the Grand Lodge in 1717, until the adoption of "The Old Charges of the Free and Accepted Masons" in 1723. Upon the adoption of these Old Charges of Free and Accepted Masons, the formula became purely Deistic; that a Mason "Will never be a stupid Atheist," and it was "Thought more expedient only to oblige them to that religion in which all men agree" viz., a belief in God, the Great Architect of the Universe. The peculiar symbolism, the lofty ethical rules and regulations, and the profound and advanced religious conceptions of Freemasons can find no other origin than that in the Society of the Cathedral Builders of the 12th Century.

If such is the origin of Freemasonry, the question arises: why should an operative Craft become a speculative Craft? In the middle ages, the clergy, or ecclesiastics, were the repositories of learning. It is not, therefore, strange for them to associate themselves with a society of such technical skill and erudition in the theoretical sciences. The study of geometry in its wide, practical and almost unlimited field, in so many Arts, would naturally appeal to them, so that this speculative Mason was, doubtless, a member in its earliest history. The two oldest Manuscripts intimate this fact, so that we are not wide of the mark in believing that speculative Masons were members in the earliest history of this Fraternity of Cathedral Builders and their numbers continued to increase year by year. Proof of this is found in abundance in Lodge minutes. Noblemen, students, scholars sought entrance, not because of any special symbolism or mysteries, but because of an opportunity for a wider and more general education and to pursue the fascinating study of the "noblest of sciences." Cook's manuscript indicates the educational and moral purposes of the fraternity. The writer thereof says: "And, moreover, He, (God), hath given to man wit and knowledge of divers things and handicraft, by which he may labor in this world in order to therewith get our livelihood, and fashion many objects pleasant in the sight of God, to our own ease and profit. To rehearse all these matters here were too long in the writing or telling; I will therefore refrain, but nevertheless tell you some: for instance, how and in what the science of geometry was first invented and who were the founders both thereof and of several other crafts as is declared in the Bible and other histories. You must know that there are seven liberal sciences from which seven all other sciences and crafts in the world have sprung; but especially geometry, the first cause of all other sciences, whatsoever they be; the seven sciences are Grammar, Rhetoric, Dialetic, Arithmetic, Geometry, Music and Astronomy."

It will be noted that this quotation from the second oldest Manuscript, shows unmistakably that one of the great ends of the fraternity was the diffusion of practical knowledge and its curriculum of studies compares well with the schools of today. Technical skill and study were paramount to any and all symbolism. There is no evidence that symbolism attracted the speculative Mason into this fraternity, or that there existed within it a school of symbology, neither did its simple ceremonies attempt to elucidate any Secret Doctrine or waste its time on the mystical numbers of Pythagoras. Whatever secrets were communicated were purely technical and trade secrets, and possibly a word and sign whereby the members might make themselves known to each other. The fraternity of Cathedral Builders was a professional and trade society – symbolism, if any, was incidental. I do not wish to be understood that these beautiful cathedrals were built in a haphazard way without any attention to the ideas to be conveyed in their symbolic and geometrical structure. The cross as represented by the transept, the nave, and the chancel; the pointed arch based on the equilateral triangle, every column, chapiters, entablature, arches, towers, sculpture and decorations; the whole cathedral was a symbolic expression of the religious faith of the builders. No structure ever erected before or since, showed such a wealth and beauty of symbols. But this symbolism was an open and manifest expression. It was a secret revealed to the world in stone. In all the symbolism of the cathedrals, there was no primitive conception of the aborigines, no transcendental moonshine or metaphysical mist. Numbers had no mystical meaning, except in so far as they were the practical application of the science of numbers to proportion in structure. The ancient interpretation of symbols was lost in the new and higher conception, and theorizing gave way to utility and beauty.

With the decline of architecture, the transition of the operative into speculative craft was easy, yet gradual, as evidenced in the "Old Charges of Free and Accepted Masons" adopted six years after the formation of the Grand Lodge. These so-called Old Charges apply more to an operative organization than to a speculative, but it will be observed in paragraph four provision is made for the holding of official station by the non-operative. It reads: "Who is also to be noble born, or a gentleman of the best fashion, or some eminent scholar, or some curious architect, or other artists, descendant of honest parents and who is of singular great merit in the opinion of the Lodge." The entrance of John T. Desaguliers, LLD., into Freemasonry, 1719, and of James Anderson, D. D., at about the same period, was the pivotal point which gradually completed the transition. Dr. Desaguliers, above all others, is the great figure who changed the operative into the speculative, but it will be observed in paragraph four associations with the scientific and philosophical schools, he was preeminently qualified for this work. While such of the symbolism of Freemasonry was introduced at a later period, yet the sublime symbolism of Freemasonry is the product of this clergyman's son. In 1723 Freemasonry stood at the dawn of a new age with great opportunities and potentialities in her grasp. Although conceived and born in a fraternity of Christian architects and scholars, retransformed into a new life by two Christian clergymen, it laid aside its special creed and dogma for the promulgation of the great and fundamental creed: The Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of Man.

In conclusion I would restate that Freemasonry is a Brotherhood and not a secret society; the secret signs, grips and steps in its ceremonies today are remnants of its evolution. These remnants are a hindrance to the full glory of Freemasonry, in that they create curiosity for the aborigines of the twentieth century and a veil of mystery for the illiterate and self-seeking. Signs, grips and steps are nothing, and ritualism is only secondary to the all-embracing spirit of Freemasonry, – Brotherhood.

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By Bro. Joseph Barnett, California

THE work of a Mason is building. There was a temporal structure; there is a spiritual edifice. There was an ashlar of stone to be prepared for the wall; there is an ashlar of a human life to be made ready for that "Temple not made with hands."

The First Square

The handiwork of an individual Craftsman had to be so made as to correspond to and fit the handiwork of the other Craftsmen. The angle must correspond; the ends must be squared. When the ashlars were assembled, each must fit into its proper place in the wall of the Temple. Though some were more ornamental than others, yet all were necessary. When the master workman laid down the design upon his Trestle Board, each individual design was a part of the complete plan.

The work of any member of the Lodge must square with the work of his fellow members. The Masonic life of an individual must fit into and be an essential part of the life and purposes of the Fraternity. Any one part is not necessarily the most prominent part of the completed structure; but, unobtrusive though it may be, it must fit into place perfectly with the great plan, and be an essential and useful portion of the Temple of Masonic life. Whether for strength or beauty, its first relation is with the Fraternity. Such is the first square or angle of a Mason's work. Ornamental it may not be; but squared and perfected his work should be, that the building may stand firm, established in strength.

The Cabletow

When the Craftsman's education is perfected and he has learned the uses of all the implements of the Craft, he becomes the Master Mason, whose duty it is to direct others in their work. Added responsibility is now upon his shoulders. With light added to light, the Master Mason's interest is broader and reaches farther than when he was a Fellowcraft.

Up to this time, his Masonic tie was two-fold – with the master workman and with his fellow craftsmen. But now the added strand of the three-fold tie unites him also with all mankind. Something of this he has learned before; now he begins to see his full duty with clearer vision. The Temple of Freemasonry represents an ideal of manhood that is to be an inspiration for all the world.

In the Trowel he finds a symbolism concerning that Brotherly Love which unites the Craftsmen into one sacred band, to whom his first duty calls. And in the Cabletow he sees a symbol of that bond of human sympathy which reaches out to all mankind, and recognizes those outside of the Fraternity as brethren whose claim is only less than that of his Masonic brethren.

Such is the length of the Master Mason's Cabletow, the three-fold cord of Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth, that, leading toward his fellowmen, intertwines with that other three-fold cord of Faith, Hope and Love that leads to God.

A man who lives right, and is right, has more power in his silence
than another by his words. Character is life bells which ring out
sweet music, and which, when touched accidentally even, resound
with sweet music.
– Phillips Brooks.

The youth gets together his materials to build a bridge to the
moon, or, perchance, a palace or temple on the earth, and at length
the middle-aged man concludes to build a wood-shed with them. –

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By Bro. Ossian Lang, Grand Historian, G.L. of New York



WHEN speaking of Freemasonry, we must take into account a trinity of elements: Form, Substance, and Spirit. Or, to mark the dividing lines more distinctly: Constitutions, Ritual, and Teachings. In attempting to trace the history of our Fraternity, it would be necessary, therefore, to account for the origins of these several elements.

I believe you need no argument from me to convince you that a really satisfactory history cannot be published without doing violence to our Masonic obligations, except for the exclusive instruction of lawful Master Masons. Yet, if we could demonstrate that the premier Grand Lodge represented merely the revival of something that had had a continuous existence before, the task would be comparatively simple. Such, however, is not the case. At any rate, there is no proof for it. The "Constitutions" were derived from one source and then remodeled to meet new requirements; degrees and other ritualistic forms and usages were elaborated on the basis of barrowings from several sources; the teachings were organized more or less independently of any pre-existing body of instruction; the spirit is a growth from beginnings which may be traced with some degree of clearness to societies quite different from those which contributed constitutions, suggestions for initiatory ceremonies and fundamental teachings.

The limitations set for the object of the present discussion, restrict our researches to contributions derived from whatever connections we may be able to trace between our Fraternity and medieval craft gilds of operative Masons.

In order to mark clearly our point of departure, we shall have to review briefly the establishment of the Grand Lodge of England, between the years of 1717 and 1723.

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Beginnings of the Premier Grand Lodge:

Shortly after the accession of George I to the throne of Great Britain, a number of "accepted FreeMasons," of whom we shall speak more fully by and by, resolved to form a center of union. Accordingly, a preliminary meeting was held, in February, 1717, at the Apple Tree Tavern, in London, which was attended by representatives of four "drooping Lodges," together with "some old Brothers." After having put into the Chair the oldest Master Mason (then Master of a Lodge), "they constituted themselves a Grand Lodge pro tempore in Due Form, and forthwith revived the Quarterly Communication of the Officers of Lodges (called the Grand Lodge), resolved to hold the Annual Assembly and Feast, and then to chuse a Grand Master from among themselves, till they should have the Honour of a Noble Brother at their Head."

The first "Annual Assembly and Feast" of this provisional Grand Lodge was held four months later, on John Baptist day, June 24, 1717, at the Goose and Gridiron Ale-house, in St. Paul's Church-Yard. Before sitting down to dinner, Mr. Anthony Sayer, Gentleman, was elected Grand Master and duly installed.

The significance of this simple recital of events consists in the information that a Grand Lodge was formed to be composed of Masters and Wardens of "regular Lodges" which were approved by the Grand Lodge, or to be established "by authority of a warrant from the Grand Master for the time being, granted on petition."

Whatever connection, if any, may have existed theretofore between the Lodges composing this first Grand Lodge of accepted Free-Masons and any former organization or organizations of Craft Masons or others, was now definitely ended. In fact, Lodges claiming to be Masonic, which were not operating under the authority of this Grand Lodge, were considered to be clandestine and not worthy of consideration.

Further confirmation of the conclusion that a new Fraternity had arisen, is supplied in the subsequent tacit admission by newly formed Lodges and Grand Lodges that the Grand Lodge at London must be accepted as the supreme authority in all matters concerning Accepted Free-Masons.

In short, the formation of that Grand Lodge marked the beginning of Freemasonry, as we know it and as we practice it today.

Nothing of any moment appears to have transpired between the Annual Assembly of 1717 and that of 1718, except perhaps the probable admission to membership of George Payne, Esquire, who became Grand Master on June 24, 1718. Soon after this, the young, or, if you prefer to call it so, the rejuvenated, Fraternity made a notable accession in John Theophilus Desaguliers, who became identified with one of the existing Lodges, was promptly made Master of his Lodge, and at the following Annual Assembly, on June 24, 1719, was elected Grand Master.

Desaguliers was just the man needed to place Freemasonry, as represented by the Grand Lodge, on a solid foundation of serious purposes and to make it a power for good in the world. A significant sidelight on the predominantly convivial character of the Fraternity is afforded in the record that at the feast following the installation of Desaguliers as Grand Master "the custom of drinking healths" was revived.

Desaguliers was thirty-six years old when he became Grand Master. He was the son of a French Huguenot clergyman, who had been forced to leave his native country, on the revocation of the edict of Nantes, in 1685, and had found refuge and a parsonage in London, the haven for thousands of exiled Protestants from all parts of the European continent. John Theophilus proceeded to Oxford, after the death of his father, where he came under the influence of the great Newton, who took special interest in him. After taking his academic degrees, entering on deacon's orders, and occupying a chair of experimental philosophy, he was, in 1714, elected a fellow of the famous Royal Society and invited to become demonstrator and curator of that exclusive body of promoters of the natural sciences. Sir Isaac Newton, who held him in high esteem, was then president of the Royal Society. In the same year Desaguliers became chaplain to the Duke of Chandon. King George I, who listened to one of his sermons, was so greatly impressed that he commanded him to deliver courses of lectures at court. Desaguliers retained this royal favor through the reign of George I and continued his lectures to the royal household, under George II, presumably until he died, in 1744.

We cannot, at this time, enter more fully into the biography of this interesting character. The data I have selected are of peculiar significance for our present purpose. Desaguliers' prominence in the Royal Society was to be of considerable importance for the development of the purposes of the Grand Lodge. If we were to consider the growth of the Fraternity, from 1719 to the end of the eighteenth century, we should find that many famous men were drawn into Freemasonry through the influence, directly or indirectly, of Desaguliers. Two years ago it was my privilege to show you how this influence brought Frederick the Great into the Fraternity.1 We might show how Desaguliers' invention of military machinery and the prominence of one of his sons in the Royal Artillery undoubtedly account for the multiplication of military Lodges. All these facts, interesting as they are, are rather outside of the scope of our present discussion.

The thing that gave no doubt particular satisfaction to the Brethren of the Grand Lodge, was Desaguliers' relations with royalty. The Brethren had set their hearts on capturing "the Honour of a Noble Brother at their Head." Desaguliers was the man to get them the "Honour." Their ambitions were satisfied when, in 1721, "John, Duke of Montagu, Master of a Lodge," was elected Grand Master.

After his election, the Duke "commanded Desaguliers and James Anderson, A. M., men of genius and education, to revise, arrange and digest the Gothic Constitutions, old charges and general regulations." The task was completed and the manuscript submitted to the Grand Lodge on John Evangelist day, in 1721. "A committee of fourteen learned Brothers was appointed to examine the manuscript." This committee, after making "some amendments," recommended approval, in 1722. The work was adopted and ordered to be printed, and was published in 1723.

Let us keep in mind that the history which formed the preface to the "Constitutions" was written by Desaguliers and Anderson, that "a committee of fourteen learned Brothers" made "some amendments," and that the final product was approved by the Grand Lodge. Mackey and others have tried to discredit this history as a collection of fables, not worthy of serious consideration. Our attitude, I believe, should be rather one of respect and reverence, seeking to appreciate and understand the character of that most carefully prepared document.

It ought to be quite reasonable for a Mason to conclude that the Grand Lodge never intended that the outside world should be carefully instructed in plain language concerning the origins of Freemasonry, when all teachings in carefully tiled Lodges are veiled in allegory and conveyed by symbols more or less difficult to interpret properly. At the same time, I do not mean to have you infer that thoughtful non-Masons could not possibly hit upon a right reading of the "history." A fine example of how the analytic mind of a scholarly non-Mason may discern the truth, may be found in the excellent article on Freemasonry, contained in the "Catholic Encyclopedia." The author of that article comes nearer interpreting the "history" correctly, in my estimation, than any Masonic writer whose publications have appeared in the English language, so far at least as these have come to my notice.

The title of the "Constitutions" tells plainly enough that the history of the "Right Worshipful Fraternity of Accepted Free-Masons" was "collected from their general Records, and their faithful Traditions of many Ages." Traditions are interwoven with authentic history. Furthermore, Anderson states expressly, in his preface to the "Constitution" of 1738, that "Only an expert Brother, by the true light, can readily find many useful hints in almost every page of this book, which Cowans and others not initiated (also among Masons) cannot discern."

As in my studies for the objects of this report I chose deliberately to be guided by hints dug out of the "Constitutions," published in 1723, I am naturally desirous of having you share with me the high estimate I place upon that venerable document.

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A Key to the History of Origins

A most important suggestion, the one which I regard as the principal key to the real history of the Fraternity, is tucked away between the pages given to Songs, in the appendix to the book of Constitutions. It is printed after the "Warden's Song," as if intended only to fill an open space:

"To fill up this Page, it is thought not amiss to insert here a Paragraph from an old Record of Masons, viz., The Company of Masons, being otherwise termed Free Masons, of Ancient Standing and good Reckoning, by means of affable and kind Meetings diverse Tymes, and as a loving Brotherhood should use to doe, did frequent this mutual Assembly in the Tyme of King Henry IV. the 12th Year of his most gracious Reign. And the said Record describing a Coat of Arms, much the same with That of the London Company of Freemen Masons, it is generally believed that the said Company is descended of the ancient Fraternity; and that in former Times no Man was made free of that Company until he was install'd in some Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons, as a necessary Qualification. But that laudable Practise seems to have been long in Dissuetude.

"The Brethren in foreign Parts have also discover'd that several noble and ancient Societies and Orders of Men have derived their Charges and Regulations from the Free-Masons (which are now the most ancient Order upon Earth), and perhaps were originally all Members too of the said ancient and worshipful Fraternity. But this will more fully appear in due Time."

In order to bring out more clearly that here we have two distinct propositions, I have broken the "Paragraph" in two.

I regard proposition number two as the key to the real (though possibly, for symbolic purposes, adopted) ancestry of the Masonic fellowship represented by the premier Grand Lodge. A plain discussion of this suggestion could be presented only in tiled meetings of Master Masons willing and prepared to follow the thread of inner history through the mazes of the past, beginning with the opening of the Christian era. However, this whole matter is not within the scope of the present report.

We must content ourselves here with a more or less summary consideration of the line of investigation suggested in proposition number one.

The "old Record of Masons," which is referred to in the space-filler, I have been able to trace to a second edition of Stow's famous "Survey of London," published in 1633, ten years after the first "inlarged" edition appeared in print and twenty-eight years after the death of the author of the original work. The edition of 1633 contains several matters of special interest to Masons. We are told on the title page that the "Survey" is "now completely finished by the study and labours of A. M. H. D. and others, this present yeere 1633."

In one section of the book are printed coats-of-arms of London Livery Companies, with brief explanatory notes. After the twelve principal Companies, headed by the Mercers, who became a Company in 1393, follow the minor Companies, in order of sequence, the Masons being number 30. Regarding the latter, we are given this information:

"The Company of Masons, being otherwise termed Free-Masons, of ancient standing and good reckoning, have by meanes of affable and kind meetings divers times, and as a loving Brotherhood should use to doe, did frequent this mutual assembly in the time of King Henry the fourth, in the twelfth yeere of his most gracious Reigne."

There we have word for word the story told in the space-filler between the "Songs" of the Constitutions of 1723. We are informed, then, that the Free-Masons met as a "loving Brotherhood," in 1410, and that they were identified with the London Company of Masons.

If we now consult the rare and monumental "History and Survey of the Cities of London and Westminster, Being an improvement of Mr. Stow's and other Historic Writers, By R. Seymour, Esq., and J. Marchant, Gent.," published in 1754, and, therefore, written with a full knowledge of the Grand Lodge of England, then thirty-seven years old, we obtain further light:

"This Company (of Masons) were incorporated about the year 1410, having been called the Free Masons, a Fraternity of great Account, who have been honour'd by several Kings and very many of the Nobility and Gentry, being of this Society."

The Arms of this Society were "granted by William Hanckeslow, Clarencieux, King of Arms," in 1472, during the reign of Edward IV. We are told further that the Masons of the Company were "once called Freemasons, but that denomination appears now to belong to another Fraternity." This was written, you see, in 1754, or thirty-seven years after the formation of the premier Grand Lodge at London.

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Connections With the Masons' Company of London

We have now a fairly clear indication that the forebears of the "Accepted Free-Masons" who formed the Grand Lodge of England, were connected in some way with the London Company of Masons. The records of that Company, therefore, ought to supply further information regarding antecedents. I have consulted, with this thought in mind, Conder's "Records of the Hole Crafts," the Parliamentary Reports on the Livery Companies of London, and many other supplementary sources.

Conder was the Master of the Masons' Company in 1894. While we may not be able to follow him in his personal conclusions, we must accept his gleanings from the original records. He was the first to bring to light that there existed in that Company "a dual condition," as early as 1620 "and inferentially in the earliest times." He speaks of a "curious secret brotherhood" within the bosom of the Company. Traditions are preserved, we are told, of an old "fellowship which undoubtedly existed in Britain in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries."

The ancient records of the Company were consumed in the great fire which devastated London, with the exception of an old account book. This account book furnished the material for several important discoveries. Conder writes:

"As early as 1620, or twenty-one years before any mention of the Society (of Accepted Masons) is made by any writers of the seventeenth century, we find in the first year entered in the account book, which is the earliest document concerning the Guild that remains in the Company's possession, an entry referring to certain gratuities received from new members in consequence of their having been accepted on the livery."

In 1621 occur entries of certain payments, made by these new members, when they were made Masons, doubtless by some ancient ceremony."

In 1631 there appears this notice concerning "accepted" members:

"Paid in going abroad and at meeting at the bout the Masons that were to be accepted – 6-6."

Entry in 1650: "Item received of Thomas Moore, Junior, in full of his fine for coming on the Livery and admission upon acceptance of Masonry, 4 pounds."

4 pounds appears to have been the regular admission fee. 'Coming on the Livery" was prerequisite, it seems, to 'acceptance." The "Accepted" Masons formed a separate division or divisions, meeting as a Lodge or Lodges.

Entry in 1665: Master orders inventory taken of goods and documents belonging to the Company; from this inventory it appears that there was hanging in the Hall a list of Accepted Masons, enclosed in a "faire frame, with a lock and key."

Further clues concerning these mysterious "Accepted Masons" are few. The earliest found, so far as I am informed, is that supplied by entries made by Elias Ashmole (1617 to 1692), in his published diary. There we read, under date of October, 1646: "4:30 p. m. I was made a Freemason at Warrington, in Lancashire, with Colonel Henry Mainwaring, of Karineham, in Cheshire." Other names mentioned are all of men who were not operatives.

Ashmole mentions the Freemasons again when referring to the historical meeting of a Lodge, held at Masons' Hall, Basinghall Street, London (the Hall of the Masons' Company), on March 11, 1682. He records that the Master, his Warden and several members of the Company were present on that occasion, and adds: "We all dyned at the Half Moon Tavern in Cheapside, at the charge of the New Accepted Masons."

Ashmole is often spoken of as a Rosicrucian. He appears to have been a seeker after curiosities, studied physics and mathematics with predilection, went to London in 1646, where he mixed much in astrological circles and cultivated particularly the acquaintance of Lilly and Booker. A further hint as to his connections is found in his having been a guest at "the mathematical feast at the White Hart."

Following Conder's statement, that there was "doubtless an ancient ceremony" attending "making" of Masons, we may next quote from a manuscript note by Randle Holme, the genealogist, written between 1610 and 1650, what appears to have been part of the oath on admission to the fellowship:

"There is several words and signs of a free Mason to be revealed to you which as you will answer before God at the great and terrible day of Judgment, you keep secret and not reveal the same to any in the hearing of any person whatsoever, but to the Masters and fellows of the said society of free Masons. So help me God."

The Bodleian Library, Oxford, has a MS. of 1686, in which there is a notation in John Aubrey's handwriting, as follows:

"1691, May 18. – This day a great convention at St. Paul's Church of the fraternity of the Accepted Masons ("free" crossed out by Aubrey, and "accepted" substituted by him); where Sir Christopher Wren is to hall be adopted a Brother; and Sir Henry Goodric2 of the Tower and divers others. There have been Kings that have been of this sodality."

Aubrey was an antiquary, who had been made a fellow of the Royal Society, in May, 1663. Among his friends were Sir William Petty, political economist and inventor; Hobbes, the philosopher; and Ashmole. He composed, by order of King Charles II, an unpublished discourse on Stonehenge and other ancient stone monuments which he regarded as derived from the Druids.

I shall quote just one more record before gathering up a few threads on our return to the Masons' Company. Plot's "History of Staffordshire" is too important to be passed by. It was published in 1686. In it we read:

"Among the customs of Staffordshire is one to admit men into the Society of Freemasons, which membership is more sought after here than anywhere else, though the custom extends more or less over the whole nation. Persons of the most eminent quality do not despise to belong to this fellowship."

Robert Plot goes on to relate that these Freemasons have "a large parchment volum … containing History and Rules of the craft of masonry." He then gives substantially the account contained in the "historic" preface to the Constitutions of 1722-3, so far as England is concerned.

He describes the mode of admission. "A meeting or Lodg as they term it in some places" is called, composed of at least five "Ancients of the Order" who are presented with gloves, also for their wives. After a collation, "they proceed to the admission," which consists chiefly in the communication of "certain secret signes" whereby they know one another all over the nation, "by which means they have maintenance whither ever they travel; for if any man appear, though altogether unknown, that can shew any of these signes to a Fellow of the Society, whom they otherwise call an accepted Mason, he is obliged presently to come to him, from whatever company or place soever he be." This would seem to be quotation sufficient for our purpose. Let us now formulate a few conclusions.

(Concluded in an early issue.)

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The darkness came, and kissed a rose,
A thorn grew, straight-way in its heart.
Then came the dew-drop, and a blush,
When Morning bade the Night depart.

Old Sorrow came, and kissed a child,
A pain grew, straight-way in its heart.
Then came the tear-drop, and a smile,
When Mother bade Old Sorrow part.
– James T. Duncan.

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Too great haste to repay an obligation is a kind of ingratitude.
– La Rochefoucauld.

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A Viewpoint of the World War

AFTER many years talk on peace we now have war. Everybody thinks and talks war while awake and doubtless dreams of it while asleep. Much that is said sinks deep into the soul. Into our lives war is bringing us closer contact with other nations. Each struggling swing and surge of sentiment binds the human universe together by the most intimate of ties.

A new world-wide conviction is abroad. Hearts near and afar touch in common cause. Out of all this struggle and suffering and sorrow should come the long-sought brotherhood of men. If ever hope is to be sanctified by blood sacrifice into certainty then no war with all its horrors ever gave greater opportunity.

War is making such demands for everything that can be done that new standards are set up of personal efficiency. Surgery has had a chance to reach out and gain more records. Many are the gruesome tales. Parts of the dead have been successfully grafted upon the living. Shrapnel-shattered bodies have been made again recognizable and even presentable to the public view. Swifter means have been devised of bodily health recovery from shock and wounds though these be deep and many. Engineering has made peculiar progress. Shops are artwork with girls and women doing the labour of men right manfully at planer and lathe, mill and shaper. On farm and in factory old and deep-rooted dilatory customs are unearthed and shelved. New instruments of mechanical precision have met masterfully the different modern machine-like conditions of fighting.

Shocking as it all seems there are some few factors afforded for consolation purposes. Science has truly served ably to destroy, yet in due season these very agencies will in turn make for the arts of peace. The gun and rifle makers of our Civil War gave us the interchangeable system of manufacturing that made the New England Yankee famous and started his American brother mechanics in step with Darling and Rabbeth, Corliss and Draper.

Already the like leaven is working in Masonic hearts. The association brought about by war between two of the governing bodies of France does at the moment appear to afford opportunely another than the traditional cause that hitherto has separated American and French Masonry so widely. Probably the situation will bring in its train complexities not fully anticipated.

For example, if permission were by any Grand Lodge enactment given Masons of our Army and Navy to fraternize fully with the long tabooed Masonry of France then something must be also done to provide for our proper conduct toward such of their bodies as may be operating in the United States by virtue of French charters. Unless we revise our system of exclusive jurisdiction, based on State lines we can not consistently recognize these French or Spanish or Italian bodies planted in the United States.

Of course we shall also think carefully about the effect upon foreign sentiment if we charter Army or Navy lodges to operate in other countries. Holding as we have done that they of France can not charter bodies here they will expect us not to charter bodies to work there. That at any rate seems a natural inference from the facts.

But contact with the problems will teach us much. We shall go forward the more surely because of the very insistence of the case. We can not set it aside. War waits not. And we shall go on steadily because so many are keeping step with us. May our example be inspiring and worthy of the best that ever flourished in the fair name of Freemasonry.

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We are yours to command, Worshipful Sir. If there be aught within our power it is freely at your service. Well do we know how much of a task is that of the serious-minded Master of a Lodge.

Are Masons properly instructed? Are they properly presented and initiated? Do the widow and the orphan partake of the maternal assistance that is their due? Is decorum united to efficiency in the lodge, and outside of it are the members as fully in accord and true to the Master's policy?

Were it given to but one person to initiate every candidate for the degrees of Masonry what a weighty responsibility would he carry! But every candidate may make or mar the institution. One fly in the ointment may spoil the whole supply. So upon the service of one Master may depend the quality of Masonic fiber in our fraternal fabric.

To you therefore, Worshipful Sirs, we all renew our allegiance. May your good nature never fail. May the blessing of health be yours. May a lively wit and a sound memory serve you at all times. Well do we know how these great advantages joined to a happy consideration for the rights of others, a complete grasp of the law and the ritual combined with a determination to make good will perfect your position in office. And to make good, be it thoroughly understood, is to make good Masons.

A man that hath no virtue in himself ever envieth virtue in others, for men's minds will either feed upon their own goods or upon others' evil; and who wantest the one will prey upon the other. – Bacon.

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Edited by Bro. H.L. Haywood

(The object of this Department is to acquaint our readers with time-tried Masonic books not always farniliar; with the best Masonic literature now being published; and with such non-Masonic books as may especially appeal to Masons. The Library editor will be very glad to render any possible assistance to studious individuals or to study clubs and lodges, either through this Department or by personal correspondence; if you wish to learn something concerning any book – what is its nature, what is its value, or how it may be obtained – be free to ask him. If you have read a book which you think is worth a review write us about it; if you desire to purchase a book – any book – we will help you get it, with no charge for the service. Make this your Department of Literary Consultation.)


WHAT, of course, is the Bible. Always it lies open on our altar, sending its light rays to right and left, penetrating to the uttermost recesses of the Lodge, and furnishing to the craft not only its temple symbolism, its Hiram Abiff, but also nearly a hundred passages to be woven, like shot silk, through its various rituals. Truly is it regarded as one of the Great Lights.

But to Masons not a few, we may fear, it is itself still in darkness, lying unregarded on the shelves or gathering dust on the parlour stand. Is this neglect due to indifference, to lack of interest, or to irreverence? We cannot believe so. Rather, so many of us would think, we should trace the fact to the new methods with which the Bible must be read, lest a man become guilty of intellectual obfuscation. As long as the Book was regarded, as it undoubtedly was by the men of dead generations, as a message from Heaven to be read like a telegram in all literalness, the task of reading it was easy, – as easy as reading a telegram ! But now that we have come to read it "as we would read any other book," to use the expressive phrase of Dr. Benjamin Jowett, the Bible must be studied against its own historical background and that is a difficult task, albeit not as formidable as many have been led to think.

If we offer a group of suggestions on how to read Masonry's great book it is with a desire to "assist the brethren" to study it from that modern point of view; also, it may be further stated, we offer our hints in no didactic spirit.

The breaking of the Bible up into chapters and verse has served a useful purpose but we are afraid this device has hidden from many readers the Unity that underlies its sixty-six books. Many, many years ago Meister Eckehart, a great mystic, and the fountain-head of German philosophy, made the remark: "There are many masters among us who have used the Bible for thirty years or more and who understand it now IN ITS UNITY as little as a cow or horse would." These blunt words still have a measure of pertinency! He who would learn what the Book really teaches should read it first AS A WHOLE and then should read each separate book in the same manner. For many times it happens that the TOTAL teaching of a book will be very different from that which some isolated verse of it seems to say.

In the next place the reader should always bear in mind the principles of GRADUALNESS. Jesus recognized this in his Sermon on the Mount wherein he did not hesitate to set aside certain dicta of earlier prophets. Jesus himself, so most of us believe, embodies that which is the central principle and deepest spirit of the Sacred Writings, consequently everything must be read in relation to him. Whatever stands in violation of his Mind may be unhesitatingly set aside.

Beyond this, it may be safely set down as a canon, the Book can be understood only through EXPERIENCE. God revealed Himself in the lives of men; the Scriptures are simply the literary record of those experiences. To understand a prophet, therefore, one must penetrate to the secret of the prophet, and seek to understand what he is intending to say from the point of view of that secret. It is for this reason that the Bible remains a sealed book to those who are strangers to religious experience. As the Master is reported to have said in a record not included in the volume: "My secret is for me and the sons of my house."

He who has grasped these general principles may next go on to study the Book systematically as though it were a text-book in college; indeed that is just what it is, a text-book of the spiritual life to be used in the college of this world's existence. In order to do this one should obtain some equipment of those Bible handbooks which are so numerous and so cheap. The Kent and Foster series may be offered as an example here.

There is no need to say that each book should in turn be studied against its HISTORICAL BACKGROUND, for not otherwise can we understand it. Most of the costly errors of Biblical interpretation spring from the vicious practice of reading modern meanings into ancient writings.

After a reader has studied it systematically, book by book, and thereby mastered it as a whole, he may safely turn to the TOPICAL reading which may prove more interesting, if possible. Beginning with Genesis the student will move from chapter to chapter searching for light on any subject which interests him. The Mason could thus study what the Bible has to teach concerning the character of God; the use of the altar; the practice of prayer; the principle of brotherhood, etc.

Many are the books of guidance, information, and advice which will help the reader along his way. The Research Society will be glad at any time to furnish bibliographies of such works.

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When an age passes away it does not take everything with it into that utter vanishing from which there is nothing to return but leaves to those who come after some vestiges of history, some pitiable fragments, it may be, of a teeming life, so that the student who brings a historical imagination to bear upon the slight memorials can often recover the period that has fled. The latter nations, of course, left us their written histories but the elder empires left nothing but a tradition, a tradition, oftentimes, of a tradition. The books that remain from the past are as nothing to the books that have perished and we would indeed be poverty-stricken did nothing but the written record remain over to us. Fortunately enough there are memoranda other than books wherefrom we can gain a knowledge, slight but vivid, of the ancient times: there are buildings, specimens of hand-work, such as pottery, tombs, monuments, inscriptions, and oftentimes, there are, here and there in the protecting hot sand of the desert, a scarred heap of papyri to be found, scribbled over in a forgotten language but eloquent, if one can decipher the writing, of the beating life of aged times.

The uncovering of these remnants of the ancient world, the drawing of them from their reluctant hiding-places, is the peculiar work of archeology; of all the sciences there is not another which has achieved a more splendid work during the past quarter of a century. In Egypt, Flinders Petrie; in Asia Minor, Sir William Ramsay; and in Rome and Greece men too numerous to mention, have done signal and unforgettable work. Many of their discoveries have almost completely revolutionized our conceptions of certain phases of the ancient races and all of their discoveries have added to the vividness of our pictures of the remote past.

Unfortunately, the fruit of their labors has, for the most part, remained in the possession of the specialists, or has been written in books of such difficult technique that common men have been unable to read them; but now, fortunately, along comes Bro. Dr. Camden M. Cobern, professor in Allegheny College, Meadville, Pa., to give us a splendid volume of nearly 700 pages: "The New Archeological Discoveries, and their bearing upon the New Testament," published by Funk & Wagnalls of New York, at $3.00.

Dr. Cobern's work is packed from cover to cover with such a largess of facts, of information, of the solid meat of verified discovery, that a reviewer cannot hope to convey even a slight hint of this treasure trove. For, while the author's main concern has been to show the light thrown by archeology upon the New Testament and upon New Testament times, he has thrown in for good measure a vast deal of other material.

A Mason, it goes without saying, will be keenly interested to learn from this book how wonderfully the New Testament records have been verified, but he will also be interested to learn of the new findings of archeology concerning the Ancient Mysteries, the Ancient Gilds, and the building of Solomon' Temple. Our space here permits only a brief reference to the Gild life.

On page 83, Dr. Cobern writes, in speaking of discoveries in Northern Egypt:

"The earliest inscription of a trade gild was put out by an association of foreign cooks in Sardinia. These gilds of almost every trade and profession were probably to be found in every large town of the first century, organized not so much for self-protection as for social recreation and enjoyment and to insure to each member a decent burial. They were not charitable societies nor mutual benefit insurance associations, though occasionally a loan is mentioned in the papyri and mutual aid was actually given on some occasions. The early Christians made use of these funeral associations and trade brotherhoods in order to organize their forces and it is for this reason, doubtless, that the Emperor Valerian made such furious attacks or these gilds. (A.D. 275.)"

In another connection he writes:

"Almost every trade had its gild or union. From Thyatira we hear of the organization of the tanners, leather workers, slave dealers, etc. From Italy and Egypt about a hundred different occupations have been found connected with these secret societies, among which we can reckon the gild of shepherds, the highest official of which was called the 'chief shepherd.' Each trade union was under some particular pagan deity. Bacchus being naturally followed by the innkeepers, and Hercules, quite as naturally, by the cabmen, etc."

In a recent conversation the present writer asked Dr. Cobern if he thought that these gilds, or some of them, had preserved trade secrets; he replied that nothing has been discovered to throw light on that. He did say, however, that a copy of a ritual used in a Mithraic "lodge" had been discovered and translated. We requested that he send it to us for publication accompanied by an article from his gifted pen; inasmuch as he is a Brother Mason we have hopes that we will be so favored in the not distant future.

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The Island of Ulva is on the west coast of Mull, in Argyllshire, Scotland. Its name, which literally meant "the island of wolves," suggests both the wild barrenness of the country and the fierce character of its earlier inhabitants. An account of these first settlers has been written by a certain Mr. Clark, of Ulva, in the "New Statistical Account of Scotland," a kind of statistical and geographical encyclopedia of Scotland. After describing the columns of basaltic rock which rise sheer up on its coast, their roots going down under the tide, Mr. Clark goes on to relate a tradition of how the natives once administered Lynch law at a rough place among these cliffs called Kirsty's Rock. It was a dreaded and awful spot, hidden away among the coastal precipices like an eagle's eyrie. This is the story:

A woman accused a girl of stealing a cheese. The girl denied the accusation with such determinedness that the woman lost her temper and accidentally killed the girl in her anger. "The poor woman was broken hearted when she saw what she had done; but the neighbours, filled with horror, and deaf to her remonstrances, placed her in a sack, which they laid upon a rock covered by the sea at high water, where the rising tide slowly terminated her existence."

Macaulay relates many similar tales of early Scotland, as do other chroniclers; but Masons, I am sure, will find the above incident of especial interest.

It might be added as an irrelevant but interesting note, that Ulva was the home of the Livingstone family, out of which came David Livingstone who built so noble a Temple of word and deed in the heart of Africa.

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(The Builder is an open forum for free and fraternal discussion. Each of its contributors writes under his own name, and is responsible for his own opinions. Believing that a unity of spirit is better than a uniformity of opinion, the Research Society, as such, does not champion any one school of Masonic thought as over against another; but offers to all alike a medium for fellowship and instruction, leaving each to stand or fall by its own merits.)

Were the Operatives Cathedral Builders?

In our last Study Club meeting the following question came up. Were the early Operative Masons cathedral builders, or did they work at other kinds of buildings? I was appointed to ask you this question. We will thank you for help on it.
– R.O., Iowa.

A book could be written in reply to your question. It seems to have been proved that Operative Masons in medieval Europe did work on buildings of all kinds, even walls and bridges. But the Cathedral builders were a class apart, a superior class, usually, and there are many reasons to believe that the original Freemasonry came from the Cathedral Builders. When Cathedral building declined, as it did at the time of the Reformation, Masonry declined with it, at least Freemasonry did; and the Freemasons were obliged to turn to the building of residences for the rich families of England, taking with them, as they did so, many of their old habits and designs. This accounts for the sudden springing up of the Ornate Style in English architecture. You will find much material in Gould's Concise History, much more in his four volume work of which the Concise is a revised form. The best work on the Cathedral Builders is Leader Scott's book by that name.

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The Ashlar

Dear Brother Editor: – Our monitor does not satisfactorily explain the meaning of the term "ashlar." As chairman of our Lodge Study Club Committee I have been requested to ask you for the Masonic interpretation of the term.
– J.F.W., Nebraska.

To answer your question with any satisfactory degree of adequacy would require all the space in this present issue; we can only offer you a hint or two. Ashlar is an old operative Masonic term not now, we believe, very much used by architects. It literally means a stone cut into building shape in contradistinction to a stone of such accidental shape as might be found lying about in a field, such as a "boulder." A "rough ashlar" is a stone as taken from the quarry, very rudely dressed into shape. A "perfect ashlar" is the same stone finished on its surfaces, squared at the corners, and ready to be built into the wall.

The operative use of the term explains our speculative use, for with us the apprentice is a "rough ashlar" because he is only a partially completed Mason while the Master Mason is a "perfect ashlar," in theory at least, because his initiation has fitted him for a place in the fraternity. All through the ritual the candidate is thought of as an ashlar, and all the working tools of the first three degrees are designed to be used on the ashlar. In older times most subordinate lodges kept two stones on a table in the lodge room to illustrate this symbolism; we regret that our present day lodges are abandoning this valuable custom.

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Geometry in Masonic Symbolism

I have been perplexed to understand why Geometry is so much made use of in our Masonic symbolism. Why is this ? Does the Letter G stand for Geometry?
– L.B.C., Ohio.

You have posed a large question at us, brother. As architects, with their handbooks of methods and materials were unknown until Queen Elizabeth's time, the earlier builders were obliged to use the methods of geometry in their work. That explains the shape and arrangement of many of the old cathedrals; they were laid out according to the squares, triangles and circles of geometry. In truth, architecture, as then practiced, was nothing other than applied geometry, and for that reason we find, as in the Old Constitution for example, that Masonry and Geometry are used as synonomous terms. As most of our Masonic symbols originated with the old builders they are naturally geometrical, so geometrical in fact, that a recent writer contends that one could spell out the whole Masonic system from Euclid's famous treatise; that is doubtless an exaggeration, but it is the exaggeration of a truth.

Another reason may be given for the large place occupied by Geometry, and the kindred arts and sciences in our ritual, especially in the Second Degree. As you doubtless know, William Preston had more to do with the construction of the present work, probably, than any other one man. Preston lived in a day of no public schools or cheap books, and he was absorbed by the scheme of making the Lodge into a school. Accordingly he transformed a part of the Ritual into an educational curriculum. (See Pound's lecture on Preston in his "Philosophy of Masonry.")

It is probable that G was originally the symbol of Geometry, and it is still recognized as such by the Ritual, as you will remember; but it has also come to stand for the Great Geometrician, and that very fittingly, for the whole of Nature is a vast objectified Geometry.

If you have access to a set of the Proceedings of the Lodge Coronati Lodge of Research we urge you to read Sidney Klein's essay on The Great Symbol; it is the best treatise on the Geometry of Freemasonry that we have ever seen.

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Definition of "Entered" Apprentice

Dear Brother Editor: What is the meaning of the term "entered" apprentice?
– L.J.C., Oregon.

In operative days a youth who desired admittance into the fraternity was vouched for by some Master Mason. He was then examined by the lodge, initiated, given an obligation and indentured to some master workman for a term of five or seven years. At the conclusion of his initiation his name was entered into the book of the Craft and for that reason he became known as an "entered" apprentice. In our speculative lodges the term has no more its original meaning, nor indeed, any special meaning at all, but we retain its use because of its old associations, and because of custom.

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The Altar

Dear Brother Editor: – Will you please tell us what should be the shape and situation of the altar? Is the altar a symbol? Some brothers in our Lodge have been discussing the matter. Perhaps you can help us out.
– L.C.T., South Carolina.

In English Lodges the altar stands near the Worshipful Master and is in itself little more than a pedestal; but in the American system its place is at the centre of the Lodge where it serves as the center around which all activities revolve. In ideal, at least, its shape should be a perfect cube which is the symbol of perfection, and also, it may be, of the Deity to which the altar is dedicated. Also, if it is to conform to ancient Masonic uses, it should be equipped with a horn at each of its upper corners. In early days, before social order was as well protected by law as it is now, a refugee was given the privilege of sanctuary if he could reach an altar and lay hold of its horns. Inasmuch as the altar is, or should be, the symbol of protection as well as of worship, it seems fitting that the horns should be retained. As it stands at the centre of the Lodge so should the habits of worship, of reverence, of prayer, and of that group of qualities which we describe as spirituality, stand at the center of a Mason's life.

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Books on the Origin of Masonry

Dear Brother Editor: – If you have any books dealing in particular with the origin of Masonry, I shall be glad to have particulars. During the coming winter I intend to take up the study again. Modern Lodges do not appeal to me – I would like to be able to trace things back to ancient times.
– R.A.R., Ontario.

There are few or no books devoted wholly to the matter of Masonic origins, but you will find many pages, and often many chapters, in the following which will give you the information you seek:

Speculative Masonry, by MacBride.
Concise History of Freemasonry, by Gould.
Freemasonry Before the Era of Grand Lodges, by Vibert.
History of Masonry, by Armitage.
Traditions of Freemasonry, by Pierson.

For the origin of the higher grades the best work is probably A.E. Waite's two volume "Secret Tradition." You will also find much of general interest in Gould's Essays on Freemasonry.

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Dear Brother Editor: – Bro. A. S. MacBride's remarks on the "Four Hirams of Tyre" in the April Builder make one despair of ever getting to the bottom of the question as to how many Hirams were at the building of Solomon's Temple, anyhow. He discovers four instead of two.

Why the historical accuracy as to numbers should concern students of our allegorical mysteries I confess is difficult for me to see. The personage mentioned in Masonic ritual as Hiram or C'Huram is clearly not the historical Hiram of Chronicles nor of Kings, though enough of those accounts has been interwoven with the legend of the Master's degree to give it a touch of realism sufficiently to serve the purpose of all Masonic allegory, that of concealing from the profane what is illustrated by symbol.

I would suggest to Bro. MacBride a careful reading of all the old Operative scrolls and legends he can lay hands upon and comparing them with the names of the principal personages of the ancient mysteries of Egypt, Phoenicia and other peoples with whom the Hebrews as a nation came in contact. He will probably then come to the conclusion that Albert Pike was correct in asserting that the "Hiram" of Masonry is no other than the ancient mystic personification of LIGHT.

Is not Pythagoras claimed as our "ancient friend and brother"? Is he not represented as having been a student under Hor-Ammon or Hur-Amen, a priest of Egypt? Is he not told of in legend as one of the discoverers of the antediluvian pillars whereon were engraved all the ancient arts and sciences?

The old operative Masons have left us enough manuscript tales of Masonry and its origin to confuse more than the profane, unless we understand them as they clearly did.

Reference may be had to Gould or Findel or the York Rolls or the British Museum or the Quatuor Coronati proceedings to illustrate my point.

The name of the chief artificer sent Solomon by Hiram King of Tyre is given variously as Aymon, Adon, Ammon and he is even represented, I recall in one legend, as being the son of the King himself.

In Hebrew Scriptures we are told of C'Huram (translated at Hiram) and whether there were one or two or a dozen men or the name concerned in the building of the physical Temple of Solomon, the term "C'Huram Abiv" alone should clear our minds of the idea that merely an historical personage is meant so far as Freemasonry's adoption of the name goes.

For while the original Hebrew "C'Huram Abiv" may refer to the architect's father, in Freemasonry it may be correctly uses as Father Hiram or Father LIGHT indicating that all Freemasons are sons of LIGHT in a spiritual sense.

We are informed by the Jewish historian Josephus that there was indeed a physical temple built by Solomon with the assistance of the same architects and after the same pattern as used for the building of the great sun Temple at Tyre.

But a little research among writers on the mysteries of those Mediterranean countries alone, soon uncovers the curious coincidence that these Tyrian architects, under the tutelage and special favor of the Dyonysian Priesthood no doubt (since they were known as the Dyonysian Architects) were specially addicted to celebrating their mysteries at certain times of the year in Byblos, known to the Hebrews as Gebal whose inhabitants are called Giblimites or "stone squarers."

These mysteries were the mysteries of "Adon" (meaning "Lord" or "The Master"), the chief personage of other mysteries in which he appeared as Adonis, Attys, etc.

Scriptural allusion to these mysteries shows they were known to the Hebrew people as those of "Thammuz," from the name of the river on which the body of the Master was set afloat to be found later.

So that among the Tyrians themselves it is probable that the Master Architect as spoken of in some of the old "histories" or legends of the operatives, was indeed called Adon, corrupted into Aymon or Ammon, not necessarily through ignorance, but as demonstrating a connection of the Dyonysian rites with the original Egyptian parent stem as concluded by some investigators.

For Byblos in mythology, turns out to be the identical spot where Egyptian allegories represent Isis coming to find the body of her Lord Asar or Osiris.

The most common name for Deity among the Egyptians was Ammon or Amun, frequently combined with Ra the sun, symbolic of LIGHT. The son of Isis and Osiris was Hor or Horus – again the name of LIGHT. These three personages of the Egyptian mysteries, As, Asar and Hor (Isis, Osiris and Horus) are familiar enough to every student of the mysteries as the Egyptian trinity equivalent to the present Master and wardens of a lodge, Horus being typical of the candidate himself.

In Horus and the priest Hor-Ammon of Pythagoras, in the Hebrew C'Huram, in the mythical thrice great Hermes of ancient Egypt, founder of the "Hermetic" sciences of whom, in the Urim and Thummim of the Jewish High Priest, and the Hiram of the Masons, we may see but synonyms for the name of LIGHT.

Albert Pike and other writers have referred to the hieroglyphic representation on Egyptian monuments, showing the "raising of a candidate" by the hierophant clothed in a Lion's skin. The Egyptian name of the Lion was Aor – LIGHT. Compare Hebrew – LIGHT.

There is abundance of proof in mythology connecting the almost universal name for LIGHT with the Lion, the God, and the mysteries.

If we are to interpret literally and historically all the writings and legends of antiquity without suspecting the existence of symbolic keys to their spiritual significance, it will take us no long while to utterly destroy interest in Freemasonry.

The literal minded might well say, the Lion derived its name of Aor from its roar, by way of onomatapoea. The name of Deity or the Sun among Egyptians and Chaldeans, "Ra," is merely a curious coincidence. And so with the Babylonian "moon worship" of Ur and as to the Egyptian Amun and the Phoenician Ammon they were probably separate "gods" and the combination of the two names due to the confusion of those old priests trying to discover what they were talking about.

But the careful and impartial student will scarcely dismiss the matter in that nonchalant manner, if he spend the time and patience necessary to wade through the vast literature concerning the mysteries of all times. He may have to dig into Wilkinson and Petrie as well as Churchward, Cumont and others, but it is all there.

The Masonic Hiram, Master Architect of the Temple, is the modern survival of the two words for LIGHT and Lord or Master – Hur-Amen.

I greatly regret that I have neither the time nor inclination to hunt up all my "authorities," as my library is scattered now in many places and what notes I have preserved by the way, stored here and there and covered with dust. Personally I am no longer greatly interested in such studies, having covered the ground to my own satisfaction years ago, and perhaps selfishly, neglected to prepare myself with proper references to what somebody else has said and discovered for the benefit of "future generations."

But this I do know, so far as history, legend, mythology, archaeology, comparative religion and similar studies can be considered "proof," it is all there for those who are willing to dig in this "rubbish from the temple."
J.W. Norwood, Kentucky.

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Approaching The River

Dear Brother Editor: – There are a lot of us old Masons that are approaching the river and some of us are so near that we can almost hear the breakers roar and see the craft that is to convey us to the shore. A few more years at best and we shall be numbered with the dead, having crossed over the river and entered that plain from whose bourne no traveler has returned. When that time comes and the lamp of life is flickering, who aside from the loved ones of the home will be gathered around our couch to watch the spirit take its flight and return to God who gave it? Will we have so conducted ourselves Masonically, that the brethren will be found at our side to give comfort and consolation to our loved ones? When our eyes have been closed for the last time and our spirit has departed, what will be said of us by our brethren? Will they say he was worthy and well qualified to enter into everlasting life? Will they say that Masonry was bettered for his having lived in the world and having been a Mason? Or, will they act and speak of us in a different manner ?

The question of supreme importance to us is: How are we living how are we conducting ourselves in our daily life with our fellow men; are we dealing with them on the square; are we acting discreetly; is our daily conversation Godly; have we exercised due caution and tyled well the bodily temple of earth ?

All good Masons recognize God and point to Him as the Great Light of Masonry. Have we made peace with Him ? Are we prepared to answer the call? Are we prepared to cross the river? If not, let us get right at once, for we are approaching the river and we cannot turn back; we must go forward and cross over. Our preparedness or unpreparedness for the transition rests solely with us. We can win all or lose all. If the darkness of the river has no parallel, it will be our fault. If the way is bright and the lights of everlasting life are shining brightly to guide us over the river and the hand of God can be seen beckoning us on, then it will be our glory and we can join in the anthems with the redeemed and sing through the ceaseless ages of eternity the Master's praise.

Let us hope for the best and prepare for the day when we shall be called upon to cross the river. Let us be prepared to answer the call with gladness, that we may enter the land where partings never come, where farewells are never spoken and where we can bask in the sunlight of God's love forever and forever.

Don't speak lightly of this matter. Tread lightly and speak softly in the presence of the dead and dying. The Mason that does not regard getting right with God ought to give serious thought to the matter while it is called today, for tomorrow he may die. Look over the cities of the dead. Then turn and look over the cities of the living. Don't you think the pace is about even? It is only a question of time till the hearse will back up in front of our abodes and the pall-bearers will step inside and gently take up the casket that contains our mortal remains and follow them to their last resting place on the hill. But the spirit that God gave us, what of it? It has returned to Him who gave it. He has called for his own. Our doom is sealed. Our work is ended. It is ready for acceptance or rejection. If the stone is true, square and properly made, all will be well and we shall enter into that rest prepared for the saints of God in that mansion not made with hands eternally in the heavens; otherwise, all is blackness and despair and all is lost to us forever and ever. Brother Masons, prepare to cross the river while time is still with us and we can work, for the night cometh when no man can work.
Robert A. Turner, Washington.

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Military Lodges

Dear Brother Editor: – If you wish to do a good work push along the Military Lodge idea, which received such splendid endorsements in the August number of THE BUILDER.

For many years I have observed the influence of Masonry on soldiers and it is beyond belief, to see the wonderful influence the Craft has on our men of the Regular Army. It makes better men of them, they sit in Lodge with their officers, they learn to know each other and I have never known of any breach of discipline to result, to the contrary it has tended to improve discipline.

There is a Lodge in the Philippine Islands, formerly under California jurisdiction, that comes more nearly being a Military Lodge than any in the United States. The entire membership, and it has a large one, is made up of officers and men of the Regular Army. The influence of this Lodge is of the greatest credit to Masonry and it has done a great work in bringing the officers and men closer together. It has bound them together by a tie that can never be broken and will never be forgotten.

Now with the many changes that are being made, due to the War, the membership is being widely scattered. How much better it would be if this had been a Regimental Lodge that would go with the Regiment wherever it may go.

Masonry now has a wonderful opportunity through the men of the Army who will go to France, and nothing should be allowed to stand in its way. Think what a Lodge meeting near one of the great battle fields will mean and how it will help cement the Allied Army more closely together.

I hope this good work will be pushed to a successful termination and that we may see many Regimental Lodges in France and the mission of our fraternity in teaching peace and good will towards all mankind made successful.
Russell P. Reeder, Lieut. Colonel Field Artillery, Alabama

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The Tides

Dear Brother Editor: – Referring to localities where the tide ebbs and flows twice in twenty-four hours, I find the following in "The Elements of Astronomy" by White, 5th edition, 1915, used by the students of the United States Naval Academy, on pages 153 and 154, par. 178, "Four Daily Tides." At some places the tides rise and fall four times in each day. This is ascribed to the existence of two different tidal waves, coming from opposite directions. This phenomenon occurs on the eastern coast of Scotland, where one wave comes into the North Sea through the English Channel, while a second wave comes around the northern extremity of Scotland. At places where these two waves arrive at different times, each wave will produce two daily tides.

Par. 180, "Other Phenomena. Along the northern coast of the Gulf of Mexico there is only one tide in the day, the second one being probably obliterated by the interference of two waves. An approximation to this state of things is noticed on the Pacific coast, where at times one of the daily tides has a height of several feet, and the other a height of only a few inches. A very curious statement has been made by missionaries concerning the tides of the Society Islands. They say that the tides there are uniform, not only in the height which they attain, but in the time of ebb and flow, high tide occurring invariably at noon and at midnight; so that the natives distinguish the hour of the day by terms descriptive of the condition of the tide."
Fraternally, A.H. Vail, Pennsylvania.

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Jeremiah O'Brien – A Correction

Several letters were received from our members immediately after the September issue of THE BUILDER was mailed out calling our attention to the discrepancy between the dates shown on the tombstone and that of the capture of the schooner Margharetta in the subject matter of Brother George W. Baird's article on "Jeremiah O'Brien" on page 272 of the September issue. The matter was promptly referred to Brother Baird who replied as follows:

Dear Brother Editor: – In reply to your letter of recent date, I beg leave to say "there is still some mistake" in the memorial of Jeremiah O'Brien, and it is in the tomb stone. I got it from the Secretary of Jeremiah O'Brien's Lodge, who employed a member of the Lodge to photograph it for me. He has evidently sent me the memorial of the wrong Jerry. Jerry the sailor could not very well have made a capture two years before he was born. It was stupid in me not to have noticed the date on the photo carefully, though I remember it was very dim in the photograph though very clear in the cut. I do not see how we can correct the cut, but we can correct the date of his death, which was in 1818. The text of the essay is invulnerable.
G. W. Baird, D. C.

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Kentucky Grand Lodge Grants Dispensation For Military Lodge

For the second time in the history of the First Kentucky Infantry, a Masonic Lodge has been established in its ranks. During the war with Spain, just before the regiment was ordered to Porto Rico, a dispensation was granted, and Kentucky Army Lodge No. 1, U.D., was organized from among the soldiers, which flourished until the regiment was mustered out of the service.

On last Monday evening Most Worshipful Grand Master James N. Saunders called together the officers of the Grand Lodge of Kentucky, F. and A.M., to meet in one of the buildings just completed at Camp Taylor, for the purpose of granting a dispensation to a number of soldier brethren, who had petitioned for permission to organize a lodge, to be named after their Colonel.

The Grand Master issued a dispensation to form the W.A. Colston Army Lodge U.D., and under direction of the officers of the Grand Lodge it was set to work. The following brethren having been selected and named in the petition as the three principal officers, were installed by Grand Master Saunders:

Lieut. Dr. H. E. Royalty, Worshipful Master.
Capt. I. L. Schulafer, Senior Warden.
Col. W. A. Colston, Junior Warden.

The newly-elected Master assumed the office, and thanked the Grand Master for the honor conferred upon him by appointing him the first Master. The following officers were elected or appointed:

Maj. Dan M. Carrell, Secretary.
Lieut. Walter R. Byrne, Treasurer.
Capt. Geo. M. Cheschire, Senior Deacon.
Capt. Ben F. Offutt, Junior Deacon.
Lieut. Harris Mallinckrodt, Chaplain.
Lieut. Frank M. Wright, Tyler.

Col. Colston, when called upon for a few remarks, made a stirring and patriotic speech, referring particularly to the fact that the teachings of the Masonic Order are exactly the same principles that the United States is now fighting to uphold.

A number of Past Grand Masters who were present were called upon by the Master for remarks, and they responded in inspiring, patriotic speeches until a late hour, after which a luncheon was served in the officers' mess hall to all present.
– Masonic Home Journal, Sept. 1, 1917.

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At a certain point in the work we are told of three persons endeavouring to reach Ethiopia.

That rather mythical country was supposed to have been located to the south and east of Egypt, and to have been inhabited by the descendants of Ham, who were of semi-negroid appearance and colour.

In fact, Ethiopia is usually accepted as a synonym for darkness, ignorance, forgetfulness and death. Hence a criminal seeking a passage into Ethiopia would be typical of one endeavouring to hide his crime in secrecy, forgetfulness or even death.

It is not going too far to follow this to its logical conclusion, that such can not be attained without the consent or pass from the High Lord of Justice, before whose bar all faults must be adjusted and our conscience quieted by a confession of our guilt, and a forgiveness granted.

Ethiopia was also the land of gold and precious stones, which might be construed as a reward for those who are entitled to a pass into that wonderful and unknown "foreign country," and may possibly be a Master's wages, which are payable only for "work."
– Rob Morris Bulletin.

Our lodges need, in some instances, to be reminded that the conferring of degrees is not by any means all there is of Masonic work. Too often we fear it is only too true that lodges "have no work on" when there are no degrees to be conferred. Yet this should not be. The first and chief duty of a Master is not to confer degrees, but to instruct the brethren or to cause the same to be done by a fit and proper person in his absence. Even when there is degree work to be done, it should not usurp the entire time of the lodge. No wonder is it that so many lodge members tire of attending meetings at which nothing but degree work is done. It would be often far better for the Master to introduce attractive lectures or papers by well-skilled brothers in the lodge on regular meeting nights, and, if necessary, to postpone a part or the whole of the degree work to an emergent meeting. Lodges are mainly for the instruction, the improvement, and the mutual benefit, of their members, and not recruiting grounds for the Craft. And Masonry is a beautiful system of morality, and not an organization whose chief aim is its own aggrandizement.
– P.G.M. Charters, Quebec.

Virtue is like precious colours, most fragrant when they are incensed and crushed; for prosperity does best destroy vice, but adversity doth best discover virtue.
– Bacon.

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