Masonic Research Society
WORD * * * is the reward of study and devotion, and has never been
obtained on any
other terms. It has never been conferred in the ritualistic degrees of
and never will or can be. It is the establishment of understanding in
the Soul of
man between that higher self in him, and the MORE and Beyond Self from
draws his life, and from which his intuitions spring. This is the Real
At-One-Ment." ("Mystic Masonry" by J. Buck. [Lib 1897, 1911])
Let us see.
The Blue Lodge symbolizes this Life, from the Cradle to the Grave. From
upon the Stage of Life's great Drama, 'till its close, when "Exeunt
is the order of the Greatest of Stage Managers, and the "Curtain of
is run down. The Chapter comes next in the Masonic System – capped with
Arch – formerly, and we might say correctly, termed the HOLY ROYAL
ARCH, for such
it surely is.
Master's degree has no place in the Masonic System – being merely a
degree – a sort of enabling Act to qualify the Candidate for the Royal
The Mark and Most Excellent Master's degrees are amplifications of the
Work of the
Blue Lodge and have no part in the consecutive work leading up to the
in the position they now occupy.
and other teachers tell us that the Royal Arch degree is the symbolic
of the state after death. Life's vanities and follies have passed away;
first Temple, erected with such care through Life, has succumbed, and
desolation only appear in its stead.
is a search for Light – More and MORE LIGHT as we ascend the rounds of
– and Masonic Light is TRUTH ETERNAL. In his "Search" the Seeker will
discover profound secrets of which he was previously ignorant. They had
explained in the Lodge and NEVER WILL BE. However, they are there for
all who will
not only "Ask," but earnestly "Seek" for them. It must be personal,
self-sacrificing, painstaking and consecrated service, otherwise we
shall fail in
our search for these Treasures of Masonry that are never more than
hinted at in
the Lodge and never explained.
one of the things that each man "must do for himself" and if not
in the proper spirit, he will find the Door securely barred against him
– and he
will "knock" in vain. Thus, if we do not attain the FULLNESS of Light,
it will be our own fault – we have not properly used all of the
that were given us in the Lodge and were there so carefully explained.
of Jerusalem and its first Temple in the Royal Arch symbolize our
– Pure and Innocent – fresh from the hand of our Father in Heaven.
with the World it becomes corrupted by Sin – crumbles under the
assaults of the
enemy, and we become prisoners – slaves – just as our ancient brethren
did to the
a period of repentance we determine to lead a new life, and with this
end in view,
leave our Babylon – where we have been enchained by the Powers of Sin –
across the Desert, with its trials and tribulations, represents our
to rebuild our Lost Character, and once more become good and true, and
God and Man, i.e. – to rebuild the Temple which we have once destroyed.
on – each day is fraught with cherished memories of by-gone years – and
as we lie down to rest beneath the Starry decked Canopy of Heaven,
finds us nearer
our Goal – nearer HOME.
we reach the spot where we have dreamed that we shall reap our reward.
on the Mount of Olives, we see – NOT the prosperous, well regulated
City that we
remember, with its impregnable fortifications, soaring Towers, marble
magnificent Temple erected to the Most High God, but a mass of
we are disheartened, shocked, discouraged – but, remembering our good
we turn to the God of our Fathers for strength – and then take up in
our Work in Life – willing to make any sacrifice to win, and offer unto
services in "Any part of the Work – even the most difficult."
His guidance, we are directed where to begin our labors. It is a hard
digging among the ruins – this removing the rubbish which Sin and Vice
upon our Souls – but we bravely press on and are finally rewarded by
Keystone of an Arch. It is the Keystone of Faith in the Arch of God's
by Loyal and Devoted Service. We take it up and offer it to the Master,
us, but tells us there is still more work for us to do if we would win
prize – this time more trying and more dangerous.
to the scene of our labors – this time to penetrate this Arch – and,
the accumulated damp and slime of years, find three squares which we
take up to
Him who is directing the Work. They prove to be the Squares of Virtue,
and Brotherly Love.
put to a further test of our sincerity purpose and asked if we would be
to again penetrate this Arch in search of further treasures. Our answer
remember – and we are told "Go – and rest assured that your valuable
will not be unrewarded."
strength and courage with each successful effort, we once more return
to the scene
of our labors. This time we are more favored – the Sun is now in a
position to shine
into the Arch and we discover, in a remote corner, a strange Box, all
Pure Gold, upon whose top and sides are certain mysterious characters
which we do
this up and lay it before the Master – and then is brought to Light the
of the Ages – the Long Lost M. M. Word – the symbol of that Divine Love
which passeth all human understanding.
is that we hear those blessed words calling us to our reward:
done, good and faithful servant, enter thou into
that higher and holier Life, where the wicked cease from troubling and
are permitted to enter "That Temple not made with hands eternal in the
expiated our Sin and have been forgiven – and God has fulfilled his
called us Home. The Story of the Royal Arch Degree is of the
Reclamation of a Lost
Soul – Redeemed by Trust in God's Love, attested by a Life of Faithful
from Students of the Great School of India where many of the most
are still preserved in their original purity, that, surrounding this
Earth is a
Circle of Darkness, and beyond that, seven Spheres of Light,
corresponding to the
Colors of the Spectrum – beginning with the RED and ending with the
this, the Violet gradually fades away and merges with and into a Realm
of ineffable Purity and Whiteness – millions of times whiter than
Mortals can imagine.
these Spheres are inhabited by the Spiritual bodies of Men. Some never
the Realm of Blackness; others struggle onward and upward – gradually
and higher in the Spheres of Color – all struggling to attain the Light
hidden from the eyes of mortals until their Spiritual sight is prepared
it in all its glory.
– Thus, we find the Blue Lodge furnishes Rules and Precepts to be
followed in this
life; and concludes with the sublime lesson of Death and a Resurrection
to a Glorious
Immortality – a life beyond the Grave. Here the Royal Arch follows and
symbolism into that after life – going back far enough to connect the
one with the
tells us "There is a Natural Body and there is a Spiritual Body." –
Body, with the Soul (its Guide) left the Physical Body at the close of
Mason's degree, and then passes into the "Valley of the Shadow" – the
Realm of Darkness – representing the Bondage of Sin in Babylon. Aided
by the Wings
of Faith in God's Promises and guided by the Star of Hope, it finally
first of the seven Veils of Light – the Red. Here, freed from the Bonds
of Sin for
the first time since childhood, it begins its journey through the
Spheres with that
"fervency and zeal which should actuate all Royal Arch Masons."
journey proceeds, the Red begins to fade and merges into an Orange
the first realization of hardship and weariness – and a weakening of
the first flush
of enthusiasm which was present at the start.
to the "Bend of the River" and face the perils and hardships of the
This is symbolized by the Yellow in the list of Colors. (A yellow flag
at the Masthead
of a ship at sea is a sign of sickness – of distress and suffering on
were it not that the Spirit becomes stronger and Purer with each
obstacle that is
overcome, many would (and indeed, very many do) fall by the wayside.
in the shape of a kindly guide, comes to our assistance and the end of
journey is reached.
shall now turn our faces to the South – passing through Syria and
are we to feast our eyes upon GREEN Hills and fertile valleys –
the years of exile.
old Lebanon comes into view, rearing its lofty peak into the azure BLUE
of a tropical
sky and here we find a host of Helpers – TRUTH, CONSTANCY, FIDELITY,
and HOPE – to welcome and cheer us on our way.
down the Valley of the Jordan many familiar scenes greet the eye and
is filled with thankfulness at being once more permitted to view our
We kneel and pour forth a prayer of thanksgiving to the God of our
a single ray of RED (the Color of ZEAL and enthusiasm) comes down the
us with the thoughts of our years of bondage – and the RED, mingling
with the Blue
in its deepest shade, makes the Heartsease (Indigo Purple) with all its
promises of Glories yet to come.
pressing on, we climb the Mount of Olives; and there stand in the
VIOLET! All about
us are the Angels of Purity and Meekness. There are blessed
to and fro like the rustle of Angels' Wings – and the Guide says "Let
kneel not now to pray that Thou
Make white one single sin,
I only kneel to thank Thee, Lord,
For what I have not been –
For deeds which sprouted in my heart
But ne'er to bloom were brought,
For monstrous vices which I slew
In the shambles of my thought.
So for the man I might have been
My heart must cease to mourn –
'Twere best to praise the living Lord
For monsters never born,
To bend the spiritual knee
(Knowing myself within)
And thank the kind benignant God
For what I have not been."
Psalmist of the weak, the strong,
O Troubadour of love and strife,
Co-Litanist of right and wrong,
Sole Hymner of the whole of life,
I know not how, I care not why,
Thy music brings this broil to ease,
And melts my passion's mortal cry
Into satisfying symphonies.
Yea, it forgives me all my sins,
Fits life to love like rhyme to rhyme,
And tunes the task each day begins
By the last trumpet-note of Time.
many gods, so many creeds,
So many paths that wind and wind;
While just the art of being kind
Is all this sad world needs."
Delivered under the Auspices of the Grand Master of Massachusetts
Professor of Jurisprudence in Harvard University
philosophy is concerned chiefly with the relation of Masonry to the
law and government. Oliver's philosophy of Masonry deals rather with
its relation to the philosophy of religion. In order to understand this
only note that Krause was by profession a philosopher and that the main
his life was done in the philosophy of law and of government while, on
hand, Oliver was a clergyman. As in Preston's case, Oliver's general
ideas came to him ready-made. He flowed with the philosophical current
of his time.
He did not turn it into new channels or affect its course as did
Krause. Hence here,
as with Preston, we may conveniently consider Oliver's philosophy of
three heads: 1. The man; 2. The time; 3. His Masonic philosophy as a
man. George Oliver was born at Pepplewick in the county of Nottingham,
5, 1782. His father was a clergyman of the established church and his
the daughter of a country gentleman. Hence he had the advantage of a
under conditions of culture and refinement. He was educated at
Nottingham and made
such progress that at twenty-one he was made second master of the
at Caistor in Lincolnshire. Six years later he was made head master of
grammar school at Great Grimsby. In 1813 he took orders but continued
In 1815 he was given a living by his bishop as the result of an
at the same time, as the phrase was, was put on the boards of Trinity
as a so-called ten-year man. That is he was given ten years in which to
degree. Thus in 1836 he was able to take his degree of doctor of
divinity. In the
meantime he was successively promoted to parishes of more and more
he became rector of Wolverhampton and prebendary of the collegiate
church. In 1846
the Lord Chancellor gave him an easier and more lucrative living. He
died in 1866
at the age of eighty four.
in 1811 Oliver was a diligent student of and a prolific writer upon
particularly ecclesiastical antiquities and his writings soon brought
him a high
reputation as an antiquary. It is worthwhile to give a list of the more
of these books since taken in connection with the long list of his
it will afford some idea of his diligence and activity. I give only
have been considered the more important.
and Antiquities of the Collegiate Church of Beverley. [Lib
and Antiquities of the Collegiate Church of Wolverhampton. [Lib*]
of the Conventual Church of Grimsby. [Lib*]
Antiquities of Grimsby. [Lib 1825]
of the Guild of the Holy Trinity, Sleaford. [Lib
Remains near Lincoln. [Lib*]
to the Druidical Temple
at Nottingham [Lib*]
of the Ancient Britons between Lincoln and Sleaford. [Lib 1846]
must be added a great mass of papers and notes on antiquarian matters
between 1811 and 1866. And be it remembered the author was, while most
were writing, a teacher studying during his leisure hours in
preparation for orders
and later for his degree and when the remainder were written was rector
of an important
parish, a magistrate, a surrogate for the bishopric of Lincoln and a
the clerical fund for his diocese. This sounds like one man's work and
a good measure
at that. To it, however, we have to add a Masonic literary career even
and more enduring in its results.
was made a Mason at the age of nineteen. This statement, startling to
Masonic ear, requires explanation. As Masonic usage then stood a
that is the son of a Mason, might be initiated by dispensation before
he came of
age. The privileges of a lewis have never been defined clearly. He was
to have a right of initiation in precedence over all other candidates.
Also in England
and France he was supposed to have the right to be initiated at an
namely eighteen. The constitutions are silent on this point but the
custom was to grant a dispensation in the case of a lewis after that
age. It is
hard to say how far this usage has ever obtained in America. At present
it is not
recognized. But there is evidence that it obtained in the eighteenth
for example, in the case of George Washington who was initiated at the
age of twenty.
At any rate Oliver became a Mason in this way at the age of nineteen
by his father in St. Peters Lodge at Peterborough in 1801.
father was a zealous and well-informed Mason and a ritualist of the
that is of the type who regard literal expertness in ritual as the unum
in Masonry. Accordingly Oliver was thoroughly trained on this side –
is indispensable not only to Masonic advancement but, I suspect, to
– and as a result of his thorough knowledge of the work and his
his rise in the Craft was rapid.
Oliver established a lodge at Grimsby where he was the master of the
and chiefly by his exertions the lodge became strong and prosperous. He
of that lodge fourteen years. Thence successively he became Provincial
(1813); Grand Chaplain (1816); and Deputy Grand Master of Lincolnshire
latter office he held for eight years. It should be remembered that the
Provincial Grand Master was reserved in England for the nobility. It is
to know in passing that the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts gave him the
of Past Deputy Grand Master.
of Oliver's Masonic writings is very long. He is the most prolific of
and on the whole has had the widest influence. He began by publishing a
Masonic sermons but presently as one may suspect by way of revolt from
ritualistic Masonry to which, as it were, he had been bred he turned
to the history and subsequently to the philosophy of the Craft.
historical work is the well-known "Antiquities of Free Masonry:
illustrations of the five grand periods of Masonry from the creation of
to the dedication of King Solomon's temple." This was published in
Star in the East, his first philosophical work, designed to show the
Masonry to religion. [Lib
and Symbols, an exposition of the history and significance of all the
then recognized. [Lib
of Initiation, twelve lectures on the ancient mysteries in which Oliver
trace Masonic initiation and ancient systems of initiation to a common
matter with respect to which recent anthropological and sociological
primitive secret societies indicate that he may have hit the truth much
than we had been supposing of late. [Lib
Theocratic Philosophy of Masonry, a further development of his ideas as
to the relation
of Masonry to religion. [Lib
History of Free Masonry from 1829 to 1840, intended as an appendix to
Illustrations of Masonry which he had edited in 1829. [Lib
Landmarks and Other Evidences of Masonry Explained, by far his greatest
monument of wide reading and laborous research. [Lib 1846 Vol
of a Square, a bit of Masonic fiction. [Lib
Golden Remains of the Early Masonic Writers, an elaborate compilation
in five volumes.
[Lib 1847 Vol 1,
(did not find Volume 4)]
Symbol of Glory, his best discussion of the object and purpose of
Mirror for the Johannite Masons, in which he discusses the dedication
and the two Sts. John. [Lib
Origin and Insignia of the Royal Arch Degree. [Lib
Dictionary of Symbolic Masonry, the first of a long line of such
of Masonic Jurisprudence. [Lib
published a "Book of the Lodge," [Lib 1849,
a sort of ritualistic manual
similar to the monitors or manuals so well known today. Likewise he was
contributor to English and even to American Masonic periodicals.
no one not by profession a writer can show such a list, bearing in mind
of the foregoing are books of the first order in their class.
Oliver's views of Masonic law were not in accord with those which
prevailed in England
in 1840. In consequence when in that year Dr. Crucefix, one of the most
of nineteenth-century English Masons, was suspended by the Grand Lodge
from Masonic activity Oliver also incurred the displeasure of the
claiming the right, though a Provincial Deputy Grand Master, to take
part in a public
demonstration in honor of Crucefix in which a large number of prominent
This led to his losing his office by the action of the Provincial Grand
to his withdrawing from active connection with the Craft. But English
came to see the soundness of Oliver's views as to the independence
must allow to the individual in his belief and opinion as to what is
Accordingly four years later nearly all the Masons in the kingdom
joined in subscribing
for a presentation of plate to Oliver in recognition of his great
services to the
Craft. But justice was not done to Oliver as it was to Preston possibly
Oliver was not the type of man to urge it for himself as Preston would
In consequence Oliver was out of touch with active Masonic work for the
two years of his life. That this was in no way due to improper
obstinacy on his
part is, I think, manifest from merely looking at his portrait – which
benevolence and amiability. Moreover all accounts of his personality
the impression one gets from the portrait. All accounts bear witness to
his geniality, his charitableness and his readiness to oblige. All who
of him testify that he was in the highest degree unassuming, unaffected
of approach. That such men as Krause and Oliver should suffer from the
which greater knowledge seems to engender in those who regard ability
the ritual with microscopic fidelity as the sum of Masonry is not
wholly to be wondered
at. The breadth which such knowledge inevitably brings about threatens
foundations of the literalism which the strongest men in our lodges
have been taught
or have taught themselves is the essence of the institution. But it is
is an unhappy commentary upon human nature that the arrogant, ambitious
could at length obtain justice which was denied to Krause and to Oliver.
up Oliver's personality, everything confirms the impression which one
the portrait. He was a warm-hearted man, of zealous antiquarian
enthusiasm, of deep
faith and of thoroughgoing religious convictions. We must remember each
traits when we come to consider his philosophy of Masonry.
for the man.
philosophy everywhere when Oliver wrote was what is known as
romanticism. In England,
which at this period was still primarily taken up with religious rather
philosophical or scientific questions, romanticism was especially
of the generation after Kant objected to his critical philosophy on the
it lacked vitality. They asserted that the living unity of the spirit
by his analyzings and distinguishings. They pointed to religious faith
on the one
hand and to artistic conception and creation on the other hand as
unlike the critical philosophy did full justice to life. In other words
of reason in which Preston wrought and wrote was over and for a season
men ceased to expect all things of reason, intellect and knowledge and
expect all things of what they called spirit. The younger thinkers
filled with enthusiasm at this idea of deducing all things from spirit
and did not
see that they were simply seeking for a new philosopher's stone. They
the idea of the spirit to establish a complete unity of all things, to
the existing separation between science, religion and art and to
reconcile all discords.
Such an idea of knowledge rightly may be called romantic. It stands
before us sublime
and distant. It rouses our enthusiasm or our zeal to achieve it, and
us by its exaltation rather than by any prospect which it affords us of
sober realization. That a whole generation should have been content to
put its ideal
of knowledge in this form seems difficult to explain even by reaction
from the over-rationalism
of the preceding century. Probably the general upheaval brought about
by the French
Revolution must be taken into account and the golden age of poetry
this philosophical movement must not be overlooked. Indeed the
the romantic philosophers, the romantic poets and the romantic
musicians is very
close. It is not an accident that what I may fairly call romantic
at the same time. This will be manifest especially when I come to speak
views as to the relation of Masonry to religion.
the most representative of the German romantic philosophers argued that
between poetry, philosophy and religion was superficial and arbitrary.
that while the poet regards philosophy as an expounding of the poetry
of life which
is to be found in all things, the philosopher regards poetry as a
perceived intuitively, of the thought which moves in all things. But,
he said, religion
is a phase of the same quest for unity. Let me quote his words since
they bear strongly
upon Oliver's views: "If it is allowed that the task of thought is to
us the unity of all things, can philosophical endeavor differ in its
the religious yearning which likewise seeks to transcend the
oppositions and unrest
philosophy came into England chiefly through the poet Samuel Taylor
who wrote while Oliver's chief literary activities were in progress and
six years before the most important and significant of Oliver's
writings. The relation
of the one to the other is so clear that a moment's digression as to
youth Coleridge tells us he had been a disciple of the
But he was repelled by the attempt, so characteristic of the eighteenth
to reduce mental phenomena to elementary functions by means of analysis
and to discover
mechanical laws for all consciousness. If this could be done, he said,
destroy the unity and activity of the mind. At this time he came in
the German romantic philosophy and turned in the new direction. Indeed
he was a
romanticist by nature. He revelled, it has been said, in ideas of the
which the differences and oppositions of the finite world blended and
He was a poet and a preacher rather than a thinker and rarely got
and prophecy. Hence there is more than a little truth in the saying of
one of his
critics that he led his generation through moonshine to orthodoxy and
to a more
pronounced orthodoxy than had formerly obtained. It is said that the
or Puseyite movement of the nineteenth century, which carried Newman
and so many
other English scholars into the church of Rome, was a result of
then, were the characteristics of the philosophy of the time and place
and imagination were the chief organs of thought. The poetic passed for
real. Enthusiasm passed for scholarship.
abdicated for a season. Conviction, intuition and faith were regarded
same way tradition became something which justified itself. This is
in the so-called Oxford movement and the Catholic reaction in England.
It is seen
also in the position of the time as to the English constitution which
satirized in the person of Mr. Podsnap. [Lib 1865]
of Christianity with philosophy became a recognized problem. For
took this for his chief work.
these features may be seen in Oliver's Masonic writings. The defects of
writing, for example, which have utterly debased popular Masonic
history are the
defects of a romanticist. A warm imagination and speculative enthusiasm
him away. In common with his philosophical teachers he had thrown off
method and had lost the faculty of discriminating accurately between
what had been
and what he would like to believe had been. On the other hand, in
where pure speculation was allowable, these qualities had a certain
says of Coleridge that his was one of the great seminal minds of his
time. In the
same way Oliver more than anyone else set men to thinking upon the
problems of Masonic
philosophy. His style is agreeable. He is always easy to read and often
A multitude of readers, who would be repelled by Krause's learned but
pages, have rejoiced in Oliver. Hence he has given a form and direction
speculation which still persist.
to Oliver's philosophy of Masonry three important points may be noted:
1. His theory
of the relation of Masonry to religion; 2. His theory of Masonry as a
coming down to us from a pure state prior to the flood; 3. His theory
of the essentially
Christian nature of our institution.
take these up in order.
has been said that reconciliation of knowledge with religion and
unifying of religion
with all other human activities was a favorite undertaking of the
It was natural, therefore that a clergyman should be attracted to this
type of thought
and that a zealous churchman and enthusiastic Mason who had learned
whose book he edited, that Masonry was knowledge, should convert the
one of relating Masonry to religion and of reconciling them. Oliver's
mode of doing
this was highly ingenious. Religion and Masonry, he would say, are
their end and they are identical in their end with knowledge. Each is a
of the spirit, the absolute, that is of God. God, he would say, is
manifest to us,
first, by revelation and thus manifest we know Him and know ourselves
and know the
universe through religion. Second, He is manifest to us by tradition,
and in this
way we know Him and know ourselves and know the universe through
He is manifest to us through reason, and in this way we know Him and
and know the universe through knowledge or, as we have come to call it,
In common with the romanticists he sought to throw the entire content
of life into
one interconnected whole; and this he found in God or in the absolute.
to him Masonry was one mode of approach to God, the other two being
science. If Krause's triad was law, religion, morals, given effect by
Masonry, Oliver's is revelation, tradition, reason, expounded, handed
and interpreted by religion, Masonry and science.
theory of Masonry as a system of tradition seems to have been derived
The latter deserves a moment's digression.
Hutchinson (1732-1814), an English lawyer, is perhaps the earliest
In 1774 by permission of the Grand Lodge, which then insisted upon a
right to censor
all Masonic writing, Hutchinson published his chief Masonic work
Spirit of Masonry." [Lib
Oliver himself has said that this book
was "the first efficient attempt to explain in a rational and
the true philosophy of the order." Hutchinson's doctrine was that the
word was symbolical of lost religious purity due to corruptions of the
He held that the master's degree symbolized the new law of Christ
taking the place
of the old law of Judaism which had become dead and corrupt. By a bit
etymology he derived Hiram (Huram) from the Greek heuramen (we have
found it) and
Acacia from the Greek alpha privative and Kakia (evil) – Akakia,
freedom from evil,
or freedom from sin. Thus, he says, the Master Mason "represents a man
the Christian doctrine saved from the grave of iniquity and raised to
of salvation." Hutchinson influenced Hemming, who wrote the lectures of
Ancients and a trace of this influence may be seen in America in the
of the blazing star in our lectures.
enough Oliver got his cue from Hutchinson. But Hutchinson had
and Masonry. This Oliver, as a clergyman of the established church,
could not allow.
Instead Oliver sought to unify them, that is while keeping them
distinct to make
them phases of a higher unity, to make them expressions of what is
not immediately, one. This he did as has been seen by regarding each as
a mode of
approach to God. That conception led to his theory of Masonry as a body
stated Oliver's theory is this. He held that Masonry was to be found as
a body of
tradition in the earliest periods of history as recorded in Scripture.
according to his enthusiastic speculations was taught by Seth to his
and was practiced by them as a pure or primitive Masonry before the
it passed over to Noah and his descendants and at the dispersion of
divided into pure Masonry and spurious Masonry. The pure Masonry passed
the patriarchs to Solomon and thence to the present institution. On the
the pure tradition was corrupted among the pagans and took the form of
and initiatory rites of antiquity. Accordingly, he held, we have in
Masonry a traditional
science of morality veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols.
taking his cue from Hutchinson, though the old charges to be true to
gave him some warrant – Oliver insisted that Masonry was strictly a
He believed of course that Christianity was foretold and in a way
revealed in the
Old Testament and that the doctrine of the Trinity, for example, was
therein. In the same way he held that the earliest of Masonic symbols
the doctrine of the Trinity and that the Masonic references to the
of the Universe were references to Christ. Indeed in his system this
For if religion, which to him could mean only the Christian religion,
were to be unified it must be as setting before us different
manifestations of the
same God. There could be but one God and that triune God, the God of
he held was made known to us by revelation, by tradition and by reason.
interpretation of revelation determined his interpretation of the other
we bear this in mind we may accept his general philosophy without
particular doctrine. For it needs only to postulate a more universal
and more general
religion than he professed, a religion above sects, creeds and dogmas
to hold that
such a religion along with Masonry and along with reason leads to God.
Hindu and Mahommedan may each put his own interpretation on revelation
in believing in these three modes of knowing the absolute. Mackey
for narrowness and sectarianism. But the possibilities of his Masonic
are as broad as could be desired. It was too soon in 1840 to ask a
go further in its application than he went.
are Oliver's answers to the three fundamental questions of Masonic
the end of Masonry, for what does the institution exist? Oliver would
is one in its end with religion and with science. Each of these are
which we are brought into relation with the absolute. They are the
which we know God and his works.
Masonry seek to achieve its end? Oliver would answer by preserving,
and interpreting a tradition of immemorial antiquity, a pure tradition
childhood of the race.
the fundamental principles by which Masonry is governed in achieving
its task? Oliver
would say, the fundamental principles of Masonry are essentially the
of religion as the basic principles of the moral world. But in Masonry
in a traditional form. Thus, for example, toleration in Masonry is a
form of what
in religion we call charity; universality in Masonry is a traditional
form of what
in religion we call love of one's neighbor.
been said, Krause's was a philosophy of Masonry in its relation to law
Preston's was a philosophy of Masonry in its relation to knowledge.
a philosophy of Masonry in its relation to religion. Neither of the
others has had
a tithe of the influence which Oliver's philosophy has exerted upon
And on the whole his influence has been valuable and stimulating. A
critic has said
that "all he had to give was transcendental moonshine which shed a new
on old things for many a young doubter and seeker, but which contained
no new life."
In a sense this is so. Oliver's Masonic philosophy is an obvious
product of a clergyman
in the age of the romantic philosophy who had read and reflected upon
And yet it is not true that there is no new life in Oliver. Except for
so well worthwhile has been pointed out for Masonry as the end which
for us. I cannot but feel that it is a great misfortune that his
philosophy is being
peddled out to a new generation in grandiloquent fragments through
Grand Lodge orations
and articles in the Masonic press instead of being apprehended as a
an experiment, under the most favourable circumstances, of the powers
of the intellect
without conscience. He did all that in him lay, to live and thrive
principle. It was the nature of things, the eternal law of man and the
balked and ruined him; and the result in a million experiments would be
Holy Supper is kept, indeed,
In whatso we share with another's need;
Not what we give, but what we share,
For the gift without the giver is bare;
Who bestows himself with his alms feeds three –
Himself, his hungering brother, and Me."
Louis Block, Past Grand Master of Masons in Iowa
Lessing was a prophet. Almost it would seem that this second dialogue
yesterday, or this morning, so pertinent is it to the present situation
and so eloquent of the mission of Masonry. With what crystal clear
noble German saw what Masonry means to humanity, how it offers the only
which men of all races and faiths may meet and live amicably together;
and how by
its very genius it becomes, as the Old Charge in the Book of
"the Centre of Union and the Means of conciliating true Friendship
-and, equally, among nations – "that must have remained at a perpetual
Also, straight as a line of light, his vision goes to the truth that
the basis of
human society and the state is spiritual, and that, at bottom, all
issues are religious
issues. Hence the wisdom of the Old Charges – and most of all the great
the Grand Lodge of England – concerning "God and Religion," and their
emphasis upon "that Religion in which All Men Agree." Hear now the
wisdom of a great Mason who, over a century ago, lived and wrote so
not for the glory or profit of one race, but for the good of human
dispersed throughout the earth. – The Editor.]
Well, where have you been? And still you have
not the butterfly?
It lured me from bough to bough as far as the
stream – all at once it was on the other side.
Yes, yes. There are such charmers.
Have you thought it over?
Thought what over? Your puzzle? Nor shall I
catch it, that pretty butterfly! And it shall give me no further
concern. Once to talk about Free Masonry with you, but never again! For
I see well you are like them all.
How like them all? They do not all say this.
Don't they? Then there must surely be heretics
among the Free Masons? And you are one of these? Still all heretics
have something in common with the Orthodox. And that is what I was
About what were you talking?
Orthodox or heretical Free Masons – they all
play with words, let themselves be questioned and answer without
Think so? Now then, let us talk about something
else! For once you have torn me out of a cozy condition of dumb
Nothing is easier than to put you back into
that condition. Just let yourself down here by me and look!
The life and the moving to and fro and round
about these ant-hills. What industry and yet what order! Every one
carries and pulls and shoves and no one hinders another. Just see! They
even help one another.
The ants live in society like the bees.
And in a still more wonderful society than that
of the bees. For they have no one among them who holds them together
and rules them.
Therefore it must be true that order can exist
When each one knows how to rule himself, why
Will it ever come to that among men?
Get up and let us be going! For they will be
crawling all over you, these ants, and just now there occurred to me
what I must ask you at this time. I have no idea at all what you think
About the civil society of men. How do you look
As something very good.
Incontestably. But do you take it as an end or
as a means?
But I don't understand you.
Do you believe that men were created for the
state, or that the state was created for men?
Some appear inclined to assert the former. The
latter, however, may be nearer the truth.
That is what I think, too. The state unites
men, so that through this union, and in this union, each single man may
enjoy all the better and more surely his share of happiness. The sum
total of the joy of each member is the happiness of the state. Aside
from this there is no happiness. Any other good fortune of the state
for which even a few members suffer and must suffer is merely the cloak
of tyranny. Nothing else!
I wouldn't want to say that out so loud.
A truth that each one decides according to his
own condition can easily be misused.
Do you know, Friend, that you are already half
a Free Mason?
You. For you declare truths that one had better
keep to himself.
But what he still might tell.
The wise man cannot tell that which he had
better keep back.
Well, as you will Let us not get upon the Free
Masons. I don't want to know anything more about them.
Forgive me! You see at least my readiness to
tell you more about them.
You are joking – Good! The civil life of man
and all state constitutions are nothing but means for human happiness.
Nothing but means! and means discovered by man;
although I will not deny that nature has everything so arranged that
man must very soon stumble upon these discoveries.
This then brought it about that some considered
human society to be nature's end. For all our desires and all of our
deeds, even to the last one, lead along the road that nature travels.
So they decided. As if nature would not bring forth the proper means!
As if nature had more in view happiness as an abstract conception –
such as the state, the fatherland, and the like – than the real
happiness of each single being.
Very good! You are coming to meet me along the
right road. Now then, tell me if the state constitutions are expedients
of human origin, shall they alone escape the fate of all other human
What do you mean by the fate of human
That which is inseparably bound up with all
human expedients, and which distinguishes these from divine and
And what is that?
That they are not infallible. That they not
alone often do not accomplish their purpose but even bring to pass the
very contrary result.
An example! if one occurs to you.
Ships and sea-voyages are means for reaching
far lying lands, and at the same time become the reasons why many men
never arrive there.
For instance, those who suffer ship-wreck and
are drowned. Now I think I understand you. But we know very well why so
many single men fail to achieve their happiness through a state
constitution. State constitutions are many; one is therefore better
than the others; another is very faulty, contending openly with its own
objects and the best is perhaps yet to be discovered.
Undoubtedly! Suppose the best constitution that
can be conceived of to have been established; suppose all the men in
the whole world to have adopted this constitution; do you not think
that even then that out of this very best constitution itself there
must still arise things highly hurtful to human happiness and of which
man in his natural state unfortunately knew nothing?
I should think that if such things could arise
out of the best constitution that then it would be the best
And that a better one would still be possible?
Well, then, I will take this better one for the best and repeat my
You seem to have been striving from the very
outset to make clear the accepted conclusion that every human expedient
such as you declare a state constitution to be, can be nothing else
And it would be hard for you to name one of
those hurtful things that –
That must of necessity arise from the best
state constitution? Oh, ten instead of one!
Just one, first!
Well then, we will suppose the best
constitution to have been discovered; we will suppose all men in the
world to be living under this constitution would all of the men in the
world for this reason constitute but one state?
Hardly. Such an enormous state would be
incapable of administration. It would therefore have to be divided into
several smaller states which would all be governed by the same laws.
That is, men would even then continue to be
called Germans and Frenchmen, Hollanders and Spaniards, Russians and
Now there you have it already, for then it
would be true, would it not, that each of the smaller states would have
its own peculiar interests and that each citizen would have at heart
the interests of his own particular state?
How could it be otherwise?
These different interests would often come into
collision, just as they do now, and two me two members of different
states would be just as little able to approach each other with
unprejudiced minds, as is today a German a Frenchman, or a Frenchman an
So that, now when a German meets a Frenchman, a
Frenchman an Englishman, or the reverse, it is no longer simply a case
of the meeting of two men who on account of their like natures are
drawn to one another, but it is a case of the meeting of two particular
kinds of men, who are conscious of one another's differing tendencies,
which in turn makes them cold, reserved, and suspicious toward each
other, even before they have had the slightest thing to do, or to
share, with one another.
That is unfortunately true.
Now it is also true that the very thing which
unites men in order to insure their happiness by means of such a union,
at the same time divides them.
Yes, if you understand it that way.
Take a step further! Many of the smaller states
would have widely varying climates, consequently widely differing needs
and desires, widely varying habits and customs, greatly differing moral
standards and consequently very dissimilar religions. Don't you think
That is a tremendous step!
Men would none the less still be Jews,
Christians and Turks, and the like.
That is something I dare not deny.
If they were that, then they would also conduct
themselves toward one another in a way no different from that in which
our Jews and Christians and Turks have always treated one another. Not
as mere men toward mere men, but as one class of men toward another
class, who are contending for certain spiritual preferences, and
founding principles upon these that would never have occurred to the
That is very unfortunately very probable also.
For I thought, as you have assumed, that as all
states could have one constitution, so they could also all have the
same religion. Yet now I cannot see how it can be possible for them to
have the same constitution without having the same religion.
Neither can I. I simply assumed that, in order
to cut you off in your flight. One is as absolutely impossible as the
other. One state, several states; several states, several
constitutions; several constitutions, several religions.
Yes, yes, so it seems.
So it is. Now note the second evil which civil
society, wholly contrary to its intention, brings forth. It cannot
unite men without dividing them, cannot divide them without
establishing chasms between them and running dividing walls through
And how terrible these chasms are! How
insurmountable are often these barrier-walls!
Let me add still a third. It is not enough that
civil society should divide and separate men into different peoples and
religions – a division into a few great parts, each one of which would
be an entity in itself, would always be better than no entity at all –
but, no! civil society must continue its separating process even in
each one of these parts and so on to infinity.
How is that?
Or, do you think that a state can be conceived
of without differences in rank or station? Be it good or bad, nearer or
farther from perfection, it would still be impossible that each member
of it should bear the same relation to the others. Even if they all had
a share in the making of the laws, still each could not have the same
share, at least not the same direct share. There would therefore be
superior and inferior members. If at the outset all of the possessions
of the state could be equally divided between them such an equal
division would not survive two generations; one would know better than
another how to use his property, and at the same time he might be
compelled to divide his more poorly managed possessions among a larger
number of descendants than would the other. There would therefore be
richer and poorer members.
That is clear.
Now consider how much suffering there is in the
world that arises out of this very difference in rank and station!
How I wish I could still dispute that! But what
reason would I have for contradicting you? Well, now, men are only to
be united through separation, only to be held in union by never ceasing
division. Now that is even so. It can not be otherwise.
That is just what I have been saying.
Well then, what are you trying to do, to
disgust me with civilized life, make me wish that the thought of
uniting themselves into nations had never occurred to men?
Do you understand me so badly? If civilized
society had but the one good that in it alone human reason could be
developed, it would still bless us in spite of far greater evils.
He who would enjoy the fire, says the proverb,
must endure the smoke.
By all means! But because with fire smoke is
unavoidable, dare we for that reason, invent no chimneys? And he who
invented the chimney, was he for that reason an enemy of the fire? See,
that is what I am after.
After what? I don't understand you.
The comparison was still very fitting. If man
can be united in nations only through such divisions, are they for that
reason good, these divisions?
Are they then sacred – these things that divide?
So that it is forbidden to lay hand upon them?
For the purpose of –?
For the purpose of not letting them become any
greater than necessity demands. For the purpose of rendering their
results as harmless as possible.
How could that be forbidden?
But it also cannot be commanded, commanded by
civil laws – for civil laws never reach beyond the confines of a state.
And this is the very thing that lies beyond all boundaries and all
states. Consequently it can only be an opus supererogatum and it is
only to be desired that the wisest and best in each state would
voluntarily undertake these operi supererogato.
Not only to be desired, but very greatly to be
I thought so! Very greatly is it to be desired
that in every state there should be men superior to the judgment of the
populace who know exactly just when patriotism ceases to be a virtue.
Very greatly to be desired!
Very greatly is it to be desired that there
should be men who do not submit to the dictates of the religion in
which they were born, and who do not believe that everything which they
look upon as good and true must therefore be good and true.
Very greatly to be desired!
Very greatly is it to be desired that in every
state there should be men whom civic pomp does not blind and civic
paltriness does not disgust, and in whose society the lofty gladly
unbend and the lowly boldly lift their heads.
Very greatly to be desired!
And if it should be fulfilled, this desire?
Fulfilled? Of course here and there now and
then you will find such a man.
Not only here and there, not only now and then.
At certain times, in certain lands perhaps a
What if there were even now such men
everywhere, and must at all times be such men?
And what if these men did not live in a state
of barren distraction, nor always in an unseen church?
To make it short – and these men should be the
What's that you say?
What if it should be the Freemasons, who as a
part of their work were endeavoring to close up, as far as possible,
these gulfs by which men were kept strangers to one another?
I said, as a part of their work.
Oh, forgive me! I had again forgotten that you
didn't want to hear anything more about the Freemasons. They, are just
now beckoning us to breakfast. Come along.
Not yet! Just a moment! The Freemasons, you say
The conversation brought me back to them
against my will. Forgive me! Come on! There in the larger circle we
will no doubt find matter for a more profitable conversation. Come on.
tender memories these old familiar words evoke in the mind of a Mason.
the open lodge – alas, all too often beside the open grave – he has
heard them march
with slow, majestic step to the measure of the Pleyel Hymn. Never were
melody more fitly blended, and they induce a mood pensive indeed, but
rich in pathos without being poignant – a mood of sweet sadness caught
at that point
where it stops short of bitter, piercing grief. Yet few know when it
and by whom, though many must have paused to muse over the faith of
which it sings.
was written by David Vinton, a lecturer on Masonry and teacher of the
the first quarter of the last century, whose field of labor was in the
in North Carolina. Unfortunately, his path through life was dogged by
of drink, which left stains upon his character for which he was
expelled by a Lodge
in North Carolina. He died, so Mackey records, in Shakertown, Kentucky,
1833, but Morris dates his death six years earlier and says that it
Russellville, Ky. Morris adds this pathetic fact: "Nor were his own
words sung over his grave, on account of lapse from a life of sobriety."
Vinton issued a volume entitled "The Masonic Minstrel, a Selection of
Sentimental, and Amorous Songs. Duets, Glees, Canons, Rounds and
Dedicated to the Most Ancient and Honorable Fraternity of Free and
with an appendix containing a short historical sketch of
Masonry and a list of all the Lodges in the United States. It was
printed for the
author by H. Mann and Company, Dedham, Mass., and more than twelve
were sold to the Craft. This volume contained his funeral dirge set to
of the Pleyel hymn. As Mackey remarks, "This contribution should
name of Vinton among the Craft, and in some measure atone for his
they may have been." (Found this collection of Masonic songs (with
by Luke Eastman
preface of the Minstrel we learn that Vinton was appointed by Mount
in Providence, to procure a book of songs for use in the Lodge, and
the book to his mind, the more so when he was unable to find any book
to meet the
need. This quaint volume, yellow with age, and alternating quickly from
gay, from lively to severe, tempts comment, did time permit; but our
is only with his dirge. Originally it had eight stanzas, only four of
used in our ritual and burial service, and Vinton little thought that
would be sung for a decade, then laid aside, then taken up again and
a Brother Mason is laid to rest, "in the land called America."
we hear this hymn in the tyled recesses of the Lodge, or on a green
sward out under
the sky, our hearts answer to its appeal. Albeit in less stately strain
tender tone, it strikes the same note that sounds through the 90th
Psalm – that
mighty funeral hymn of the human race – with its chant of the swift
death of mourning
flowers, of the vanishing of man, and the hush of profound sleep to
which all things
mortal decline. How helpless man is, pursued by Time and overtaken by
Death – his
life a vapor that melts, his span of years a tale that is soon told.
There is here
that nameless sorrow, that unutterable sadness which lingers in all
whatsoever, and will linger in it while yet we walk in the dim country
of this world
where Death seems to divide divinity with God. Evermore, in hours
or tragic, in moods pensive or gay-
strikes the funeral chime,
Notes of our departing time;
As we journey here below,
Through a pilgrimage of woe."
by the twilights of time, the singer meditates and prays. He sees that
machinery of Nature carries forward the entire human race, and, without
them into one final sleep. Yet each departs alone – the father without
the wife without the husband, the judge without the court, the
the babe with no arm around it, aye, and king and peasant alike; and
all walk one
dark, inevitable path. In what silence and dignity they go, their faces
in one direction, following the footprints of a many-millioned
multitude into the
infinite. We who are compelled to watch their moving figures are
powerless to detain
them, and can only say farewell and then weep.
now indulge a tear,
For mortality is here;
See how wide her trophies wave,
O'er the slumbers of the grave."
our philosophy and wit, death remains a bitter, old, and haggard fact
which no man
may either evade or avert. There is something appalling in the
and collapse of the body. It is profound. It is pathetic. Words are
there is in that last silence what makes them seem foolish. What avails
any man may have to say about death? The real question is, what are we
to say to
it, whether or not we shall let it have the last word.
all the preaching since Adam
Has made Death other than Death."
and flesh fail; and the generations come and go, following the forlorn
dust. Truly, as for man, his days are as grass; as a flower of the
field, so he
flourisheth; for the wind passeth over it, and it is gone.
the shadow lifts, light shineth in darkness, and we see how true it is
soul of man is the one unconquerable thing upon this earth. How
wonderful is this
ancient, high, heroic faith which refuses to admit that the grave is
coffin lid of a dull and mindless universe descending upon it at last.
it, sorrow beshadows it, sin stains it, and yet it is victorious. When
this faith becomes more profound, and out of the blackest tragedy it
a song of triumph. So it has been from the far time when the oldest
book in the
world was written, and so it will be until whatever is to be the end of
another guest we bring;
Seraphs of celestial wing,
To our funeral altar come;
Waft a friend and brother home."
is not a mere surrender; it is a force prophetic of its own
fulfillment. At its
touch the graveyard becomes a cemetery – that is, a sleeping chamber –
Death an All Man's Inn where a fellow pilgrim takes lodging for a
night. Those whom
we call the dead are the guests of God, whose love is the keeper of
Also, our singer sees that the social life of man, its warmth of
sympathy, its sanctity
of friendship, its dear love of man for his comrade, has enduring
this is so; because life is brief at its longest, and broken at its
best, it must
be filled with Truth and Love; that so we may bring to the Gate in the
too noble to die. Hence the wise prayer:
of all below, above,
Fill our souls with Truth and Love;
As dissolves our Earthly Tie,
Take us to Thy Lodge on High."
where is thy victory? Our trust is in God, that He who made us what we
lead us to what we ought to be. Higher faith there is none. Even so,
its hope upon the ultimate Reality, the first truth and the last, and
it is therefore
that its singer sees, amidst the fluctuating shadows of this twilight
august, incomprehensible destiny for man. As a song of triumph the four
omitted from this historic hymn are worthy of remembrance:
beyond the grave there lie
Brighter mansions in the sky!
Where, enthroned, the Deity
Gives man immortality.
enlarged, his soul will see
What was veiled in mystery;
Heavenly glories fill the place,
Show his Maker face to face.
of life's eternal day!
Guide us, lest from Thee we stray,
By a false, delusive light,
To the shades of endless night.
the good man meets his fate,
Guards celestial round him wait;
See! he bursts these mortal chains,
And o'er death the victory gains."
is the Spirit of Masonry, and tireless in its labors. It never sleeps
and it takes
no vacations. If by some celestial art one could trace its influence,
and make record
of its gracious ministries, what a testimony it would be. But that
Spirit is as
modest and shy as it is unwearying in its served, using grips and signs
to hide its charities. Nevertheless, in times of trial and crisis it is
revealed, and men see, for a brief time, what it means. Therefore ye
to have a regular department in this journal wherein to make record of
of Masonry at work, and he invites his readers to assist by furnishing
such as the one given below – instances of relief, of rescue, of
and sacrifice in peace and in war – if so the "human touch" may be felt
in the midst of our studies of philosophy, history, and symbol.]
a brief digest of facts of which elaborate record may be read in the
of the Grand Lodge of Michigan. While out hunting in Nov., 1909,
Brother Harry Brownell
disappeared, and as it was feared that some fatal accident had befallen
search was made, but to no avail. Whereupon the Craft of Michigan
raised a fund
of $1672 for relief and search, but no trace of the missing man was
one Sunday morning in November, 1913, while walking in the woods near
Brother Irving Weber was attracted by a shoe lying close to the road.
circumstance excited his curiosity, and upon closer examination he
found the skeleton
of the long lost brother. Opening the vest, he discovered a soft-nosed
against some pencils in the pocket, showing that the ball had passed
body and lodged in the vest pocket. Evidently, a hunter, mistaking him
for an animal,
had shot him in the back and ran away and left him. The remains were
taken to St.
Charles and buried by his home Lodge, No. 313.
relief fund, $376 remained on hand unused. Upon inquiry it was found
that the family
of Brother Brownell were left in need, and this sum was presented to
his wife on
Christmas morning. It was a complete surprise to the young wife, whose
of her gratitude. During the long search for the body of Brother
Brownell, his father-in-law,
Brother Jay Doty, had mortgaged his little home for $950 to aid in the
sooner had this sum been expended than he was smitten with almost total
incapacitating him for doing any kind of work. In due course the
mortgage was foreclosed,
and Brother Doty was without a home. Once again the Masons took the
matter in hand,
St. Charles Lodge subscribing a fund with which it purchased a little
with the aid of other Lodges paid for it, giving Brother Doty a clear
is the spirit of Masonry in Michigan; and the only reason given for
in the report is as follows:
should, as God prospers us as an institution and as
individuals, be ready and anxious to aid those who are not fortunate or
fallen by the wayside. We are our brother's keeper, and we cannot pass
by on the
other side when we see him in sore distress. If we do, we are not
possessed of the
Masonic Spirit, nor does the love of God dwell in us."
is the solace of the intellect as religion is the comfort of the soul,
and its acquisition
is not a toil but an indescribable delight.
– G. W. Speth
is a hall in every house,
Behind whose wainscot gnaws a mouse;
Along whose sides are empty rooms,
Peopled with dreams and ancient dooms.
When down this hall you take your light,
And face, alone, the hollow night,
Be like the child who goes to bed,
Though faltering and half adread
Of something crouching crookedly
In every corner he can see
Ready to snatch him into gloom,
Yet goes on bravely to his room,
Knowing, above him, watching there,
His Father waits upon the stair.
is a prolific subject for discussion. Mention any angle of it and at
is scope for abundant speculation, for cautious investigation, and for
and extensive study. Highways and byways there be through most
of dalliance where the easy-going student may rest and refresh himself.
there are whose loftiest crags defy scent save only to the hardiest of
climbers. To each according to his taste, to every one according the
test, all having
their reward in proportion to the capacity and capability of him who
broad sweep of the field Masonic it is easy to see how our society may
by the flood
of incoming suggestions be overwhelmed to a degree where performance
must lag behind
all promises. Editorial willingness to supply all desired information
perforce upon limited space. A plan by which inquiries can be assigned
and co-operative brethren to answer by correspondence is one method of
that branch of the situation where for any reason the printed page is
or otherwise insufficient. If queries or suggestions do not get early
some of our members will perhaps naturally assume that their particular
not the consideration worthy of it. Moreover, on the other hand, it is
easy to reach
a rut and stay there notwithstanding the high standard set at the
start. Many essays
are too often imitative and not initiative in either matter or manner.
the whirlpool or the rock will call for all the Masonic enthusiasm,
equipment of our editorial pilot.
we set down a few items toward which the taste of at least one Mason is
The number of them is not comprehensive but merely illustrative.
Neither is the
order in which they are mentioned any indication of their relative
appended queries are readily increased.
the present status of the Morgan question? Have the various references
to his appearance
in other lands – such as the one at Smyrna mentioned in the biography
of Ren Perley
Poore – been conclusively cleared up? That the Anti-Masonic situation
may have had
a great dependence upon purely political matters is probable but how
far has this
been established? What foundation is there for the account by Father
a connection of the Jesuite with the Morgan mystery? Is there on record
and what is the report of that early Committee of the Grand Lodge of
New York appointed
to collect and submit all the obtainable information on this subject?
Did Col. King,
John Whitney, Samuel Chubbuck, or Eli Bruce commit to anyone additional
not already ventilated by Rob Morris, W.L. Stone, Josiah Drummond,
John Ross Robertson, or other of the better known writers?
Leo Taxil? Has any Roman Catholic study of him appeared since he
recanted from that
faith? If so, would it be worth reproduction in synopsis or in extenso?
Benno Loewy or some other equally well-informed brother – if any there
be – could
be induced to give us an up-to-the-times character study and
of this curious individual.
work of the Scottish Rite bears strong impress of the philosophy of
An American investigation at first hand of the work of this
mystic should not be lacking in attraction if sympathetically and
fascinating subject would be the study of Masonic plays, operas, songs,
Mozart's "Zauberflöte," [Lib 1911]
Gounod's "Queen of Sheba,"
Dumas' "Balsamo" [Lib 1902]
drama, and many others could
probably to great advantage be reproduced. Especially would the words
composed by Mozart for the ceremonies of his lodge be well deserving of
been written upon the Old Charges and the Regius Manuscript but a
rendering, particularly of the latter, is badly wanted. Put into
English these old treasures would have added value and a greatly
of students. Hughan's "Old Charges" [Lib
will in due course be reprinted by the
Lodge of Research at Leicester, England.
and many a time does the story appear about a Pope being a member of
fraternity. Few Masonic magazines have failed to give it space at some
these long years. Well, what are the facts? Of late an effort has been
made to filter
the fiction out of this ancient tale. For sundry items of much interest
hardy perennial blossom of the field Masonic thanks are due my good
Shaver of Topeka, and Evans of Denver. Some of these days the data will
down in shape for publication. Meantime any new or old contribution on
will be most thankfully received and in due course passed along to "The
the historic relation of the Church of Rome to the Craft and to its
That there is a singular and suggestive connection between them running
a remote past is very probable, and that their earlier relations may
have been most
amicable and cooperative is equally plausible. No one can consider
also the quaint reminders of the one set of ceremonies by the other,
abiding impression that in the one body the other has found much.
theory of Craft origins not paid too little respect to the probable
the operative body of cathedral builders of the teachings and practices
of the persecuted
and disappearing Knights of the Temple? From whence naturally comes the
if not by some such route? Do the early accusations against the
Templars not indicate
certain rigorous tests of obedience and courage employed in their
not both desirable and feasible to briefly digest the several
Codes? One State will not admit a candidate if lacking a finger. In
another he would
not be rejected if he lacked a finger but could not be admitted if he
a hand. One State permits the officer's jewels to be suspended by pin,
cord or ribbon
and their aprons are blue. Another State calls for the white lambskin
the ribbon-hung jewel for officers. A stereopticon is forbidden in one
permitted in another. One Grand Chapter requires its Royal Arch Masons
to wear scarlet
bordered aprons while another approves aprons entirely red. One Grand
legislated upon the dimensions of certain of its furniture and
leave the whole matter to the individual tastes of the subordinate
Grand Lodges approve of rituals, others don't. Several require
certificates of membership
from visiting brethren. These and many others are instances showing a
of practice that maybe would in time become simplified and systematized
any synopsis made and regularly remade of these differences.
the conditions of Masonry in other countries? Can we somehow get an
insight of their
ceremonies? For instance, there is no Scottish Rite in Germany but
there is an Inneren
Orient. What does this last most nearly compare to in our American
series of degrees?
How far does the German civil law interfere with the fraternity? The
is not unfamiliar to me but cannot discuss it in print. Could we not
get that admirable
and scholarly Mason, Edouard La-Tente, to give us a comparative paper
on the Rites
of Continental Europe? Maybe that facile linguist, Jose Castellot, at
of the Scottish Rite of Mexico, might be induced to tell us of Masonry
between the Straits of Magellan and the Rio Grande. Of the three
of the Craft in France and their relative purposes few American
Freemasons are fully
informed. Much misinformation is among us on this subject. A first step
respect is to be better informed. And our knowledge ought to include an
with the propaganda waged vigorously in France and Belgium against
the Abbe Tremontin and his Anti-Masonic followers. Our admiration for
will not be lessened when we understand the activity and force of the
foes it faces.
Cerneau? Little is known. Dr. Reid, in his history of Washington Lodge,
in the City
of New York, has about a couple of pages devoted to Cerneau. Bro.
Albert Pike has
in the first ten volumes of the proceedings of the Southern Masonic
and in his several pamphlets, dealt freely with Cerneauism but of its
find little beyond the accounts of the clash between De la Motta and
the earlier reports of the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvannia there is to be
of Cerneau because the lodge in the West Indies to which he is
accredited was acting
under authority of the officials at Philadelphia. But there is much
data to be unearthed.
What was Cerneau's trouble with the Grand Lodge of Havana before he
left Cuba for
the United States? What was the report of the Committee appointed by
the Grand Lodge
of Pennsylvania to look into that dispute? A committee was appointed
but I have
not discovered its conclusions. Of course I have read the report of a
on Cerneau appointed by the Grand Orient of France. The two reports
clear up a foggy episode in the progress of American Freemasonry.
what changes have our ritualistic ceremonies passed? There is immense
in treating such a topic by the medium of the printed page. That it can
be done is very doubtful. There is more promise in classifying the work
Jurisdictions so that a resident in any state or county might have a
guide as to
what ceremonies were most akin or least alike to those already familiar
Even at this stage, and certainly beyond it, the propriety of
the tyled door is debatable.
of a comprehensive character been published on the progress of the
The story of the Conservators and of like enterprises would be most
the vault of the great library at Cedar Rapids is hidden much
including the Bowers-Hughan manuscript, the Gilles Fellowcraft lecture,
of others. A catalogue of this abundance would be an interesting
might exhibit at least the date when each item was in use and where it
had its vogue
and its survivals.
not overlook a keen survey of topics treatable, topics upon which much
be desired than is commonly found in print, that was published in the
Bulletin by A. G. Pitts. A long life work stretches far away ahead of
full justice to but a tithe of the items mentioned by Bro. Pitts. Much
can be said of these raised in my present contribution and the number
of them could
be easily increased, a selection only being attempted. As opportunity
the writer will do his best as on other occasions to add to one or
another of these
subjects such facts as he can unearth. In this case he very gladly
lends such help
as he has at command and will ever be most appreciative of the labor of
similar fields of endeavor.
reading of all the foregoing leads the writer to consider two
As in the case of the esoteric work there is much that cannot well be
in the printed page. Would it not be well each year or bi-annually to
call a convention
of the members of the Society? If such meetings were held at Cedar
Washington, Boston, Cincinnati, New York, or other cities possessing
libraries, the attendants at these conventions would not only have the
these splendid collections but would enjoy companionship with kindred
most favorable conditions for the examination and discussion of the
such a body would handle. As to the time of year, and whether these
be coincident with the assemblies of other national or state Masonic
not be further dwelt upon now. Out of this idea of a national
evolves the thought of lesser sessions to be held wherever a few
members of the
Society can be assembled. Some one member in each section should be
given a list
of the local members and asked to get them together occasionally. How
how regularly these meetings should be we will not now determine. A
start is the
point is one approached with considerable diffidence. To my mind it is
of the utmost
importance. Yet few may agree with me. But here is the point: Too
is put upon the value of definitions. Let us take the classic instance
to Mackay. It is often quoted as "Freemasonry is a system of morality,
in allegory, and illustrated by symbols." It is captivating rhetoric
no essential difference between Christianity, or almost any other of
great religions, and Freemasonry. We may say that Freemasons reverence
the Craft, and love their neighbors; Freemasonry being the institution
these duties. This is too diffuse for a definition. Nevertheless there
is one more
extended that may be acceptable to some of the brethren. Take the
of Corinthians, that well known discussion of charity, and substitute
for that oft misapplied word. This also may easily be criticized as a
though worthy of consideration as an expression of Masonic faith.
will surely admit that the word "Freemasonry" is too loosely applied.
If a Chinese literateur employs the square as a figure of speech it is
assumed that there is in China a Masonry like unto ours. Because
are taught in Freemasonry there are those who look upon it as being
from a remote
age the preserver of all the verities of religion. We need not here and
how far we can fairly go in this direction. But to keep us in the path
the light of consistent definitions, something more than the usual
output of the
dictionaries, and a trifle less aspiring than that very partial
seeks to credit it with everything in sight.
gentle, merciful, just and devout souls are everywhere of one religion,
death hath taken off the mask, they will know one another. – William
is Friendship, Love, and Integrity – friendship which rises superior to
distinctions and arrangements of society, the prejudices of religion,
and the pecuniary
conditions of life; love which knows no limit, no inequality, no decay;
which binds a man to the eternal law of duty. – A. C. L.
else for which the old builders sacrificed has passed away – all their
and aims, and achievements. We know not for what they labored, and we
see no evidence
of their reward. Victory, wealth, authority, happiness – all have
bought by many a bitter sacrifice. But of them and their life and their
earth, one reward, one evidence, is left to us in those gray heaps of
stone. They have taken with them to their graves their powers, their
their errors; but they have left us their adoration."
– John Ruskin. The Lamp of
stood in the heart of God;
It seemed a place that I had known:
(I was blood-sister to the clod,
Blood-brother to the stone.)
found my love and labor there,
My house, my raiment, meat and wine,
My ancient rage, my old despair –
Yea, all things that were mine.
saw the spring and summer pass,
The trees grow bare, the winter come;
All was the same as once it was
Upon my hills at home."
suddenly in my own heart
I felt God walk and gaze about;
He spoke; His words seemed held apart
With gladness and with doubt.
is my meat and wine, he said,
My love, my toil, my ancient care;
Here is my cloak, my book, my bed,
And here my old despair.
are my seasons: winter, spring,
Summer the same, and autumn spills
The fruits I look for; everything
As on my heavenly hills.
to tender my best wishes for the success of the new Society which has
by the Masonic scholars of the State of Iowa. The efforts of the late
Parvin in the cause of Masonic Research have been ably continued by his
present Grand Secretary, and among the elder Brethren in your Grand
a spirit of inquiry with respect to the past of our Masonic Inheritance
firm root. Of this there is an example in point which is afforded by
of the Society whose literary organ it will be your privilege to
think the editorial chair could be better filled. Your record as a
writer of the
Craft is a bright one; you are a ripe Masonic scholar, and have the
power of expressing
yourself with vigor and lucidity in the mother tongue of Freemasonry.
therefore, point in the direction of the new Society being admirably
served by the
journal whose province it will be to record the progress of the
labors of which are having their beginning with the current year.
Honorary Member of the Grand Lodge of Iowa for more than a quarter of a
I am, have been, and shall ever remain deeply interested in all its
and that the important step it has recently taken with regard to the
of Masonic Science may constitute another and lasting claim on the
all who are anxiously looking for "more Light," is my earnest Bravery
– Robert Freke Gould
no first issue of a journal ever received more bouquets, and fewer
the initial number of The Builder; and this is obviously due to the
the Craft, and also to the deeply felt need for such a journal and the
it represents. Ye editor and secretary have been literally overwhelmed
letters of congratulation and goodwill, expressing appreciation, and
most hearty co-operation, and they take this opportunity of replying,
since it would
be impossible to do so otherwise, and of thanking the brethren for
their words of
feature of The Builder has met with praise, including its size, its
paper, type and cover, and almost every article it contained. Hardly a
has expressed gratitude for the lecture of Brother Pound, and eager
of the other four lectures in the series – which moves us to announce
that we have
secured his series of lectures of the. Symbolism of Masonry, to appear
editor is sincerely grateful for all the good words about his little
ran a neck and neck race with "Ernst and Falk" in the minds of our
Many suggestions have been offered, all of them timely and valuable,
a single criticism – except from Brethren who are impatient and want
done at once; an impatience due to their deep interest. Typical of
hundreds of others
is this most gracious letter from Past Grand Master Hepner, of Montana:
have carefully read the initial number of The Builder,
and allow me to assure you that if the succeeding numbers are as good
as the first,
you will have the finest Fraternal Magazine ever published; every line
of it is
worthy of study by every member of the Craft, and its readers should
many thousands in numbers."
of keeping these letters to ourselves, the editor and secretary feel
that it is
but fair that the Society should know what impression The Builder has
hence this brief catena of extracts telling from many points of view
how and why
the Society and its journal are appreciated. Often The Builder is
praised as much
for what it does not contain as for what it publishes, and we have
selected the most conservative letters, lest our readers think us
to the aim and object of the Society, I am in full accord. Co-operation
lines indicated in the Foreword must bring good results, and will fill
a want long
felt in the United States. There are several Societies of the kind in
all are doing good work."
F. Sachse, Philadelphia
fully appreciate the vast field that you are pioneering. You will have
'Mellen's Food' for the infants, and strong meat for the adults, and
until you get
the 'range' you will as often fire in the air over the heads of your
as you will shoot their boots off. But time, patience and perseverance
accomplish all things, and in the future you and your fellow-workers of
Jurisdiction of Iowa will go down in history as the foster-fathers of
advancement." – H. F. Evans, Denver
Builder starts off with the right spirit for constructive work in
Masonry. The Foreword
is splendid. After many years' work along educational lines in Masonry,
I at last
feel the encouragement which comes from a closer relation thus
Brethren, widely scattered though they may be." – Thomas M.
absence of personal mention of bodies and individuals, which takes up
cent of the average Masonic journal, is pleasing indeed. But more
me is the policy inaugurated and embodied in the line, 'We drew a
circle that took
him in.' May this policy always be continued in The Builder." – J.
Ball, Evanston, Ill.
think the first issue of The Builder alone worth the price. Indeed I am
price is too low, and unless the membership grows apace it will be
mark it up. I believe and confidently hope that this movement will be a
Masonic circles, which we have needed for years." – Thomas A.
it would be easy to fill one whole issue of The Builder with letters of
and spirit, but these are enough to show that this Society has struck a
chord in the heart of the Craft, and that it has a great work to do in
Masonry. Many thanks, Brethren, one and all; and we are sure that every
do his part in spreading news of the Society and its journal, thereby
more effective in behalf of an Order whose spirit of Freedom,
Friendship and Fraternity
is the hope of humanity. Both for himself, and for our hard-working and
secretary, without whose investment of time, energy and money this
never have been founded, ye editor extends fraternal greetings and
more it becomes clear that the problem before this Society – and before
generally, for the matter of that – is the problem of the pedagogy of
far no one has solved that problem satisfactorily, albeit much has been
that direction by means of books, pamphlets, oral and written lectures,
and various other methods. Still, we have not yet formulated a
practical course of Masonic study for the use of young Masons who ask,
a half thousand have asked ye editor of late: How should we begin the
study of Masonry,
and where? Moreover, as a chief reason for the existence of this
Society is the
working out of this very problem, for some time to come that task will
be its primary
undertaking, the more so because so many young Masons, new to the Order
wonderful history and philosophy, are numbered among its members.
ye editor has planned a symposium on the subject of How to Study
Masonry, and has
asked a number of eminent Masons – some of them university men who have
experience in teaching – to contribute to it, with the intent of
bringing the best
thought, experience and method of the Order to bear on the problem.
and published in full, as it will be in the Builder – beginning with
the next issue
– it is believed that this symposium will be one of the most suggestive
documents in the literature of the Order. Meanwhile, that we may have
of the widest experience and the most fruitful suggestion, we throw the
to the whole Society, inviting contributions to this symposium from
and no one should hesitate because he has not been asked by letter to
want is the net result of the experience and counsel of the Craft. and
in hand the Society will formulate and publish a detailed program by
which a young
Mason of average ability and training may begin the study of Masonry,
it step by step intelligently, on a basis as sound pedagogically as it
and thus come to know the story of this great Order, its development,
and philosophy. Time will be needed to work out this plan in all its
it not only must be done but can be done, and this Society can render
no more important
and far-reaching service to the Order.
good news. At last there is to be a biography of Albert Pike, written
by his daughter,
Mrs. Lilian Pike Roome, whose service to the memory of her
will evoke the gratitude of Masons of every rite and rank who hold him
alike for his character and his genius. They will welcome every detail
of the life
of a man who devoted his extraordinary powers to the Order which he
loved, and who
wrought in its Temple as a Michel Angelo of Masonic architecture – the
of American Masonry. Many years have come and gone since he disappeared
vision, and other men and other scenes have come upon the stage; but
lives, as he wished to live when he said: "I wish my monument to be
only in the hearts and memories of my brethren of the Ancient and
will be no conflict between the labors of Mrs. Roome and the little
book which ye
editor has long had in mind, and to which reference was made in the
of the Builder. His work, should he find time to complete it, would be
more a study
than a biography, an estimate, at once sympathetic and critical, of
Pike as a Masonic
thinker and artist. No purer, nobler man has stood at our altar or left
in our traditions. He was the most eminent Mason in the world, not only
of his high rank, but by the richness of his culture, and the enduring
his achievement. Nor will the Order ever permit to grow dim that
and gentle soul.
kindness of Sir W. J. Chetwode Crawley, Grand Treasurer of the Grand
Lodge of Ireland,
we have the advanced proofs of an essay from his pen, discussing "The
of the SS Quatuor Coronati." It embodies the first attempt at
Freemasonry with the followers of Wycliff, the progenitors of the
and also the earliest authentic and authorized association of Solomon
with the Guild
Legend. It is one of the most brilliant and important papers in recent
but as it would not be proper to anticipate its publication in the
of the Quatuor Coronati Lodge, we reserve more extended notice of it
until a later
good to know that we are to have a biography of Robert Collyer, one of
preachers of his day and an ardent Freemason. It will be written by
Holmes, at the request of the family of Dr. Collyer. There was about
Carlyle would say, something of the eternal. All who heard him carried
haunting suggestion that somehow, through this man, there came an echo
of a voice
divinely clear. He was a man of winning words and melting moods, as
rich in pathos
as in humor, and ye editor is one of the many thousands who can never
nor lose the impress of his rare and beautiful genius.
means let us have a question box, as so many have suggested, in which
as may properly be asked and answered in print may be taken up and
not a few may be glad to know of a little journal devoted to that very
Latomorum or Masonic Notes and Queries," printed for private
L. Upcott Gill & Son, Drury Lane, London, W. C., annual
subscription five shillings.
This little paper will be found very useful in many ways.
we cannot promise to deal with questions not Masonic, though a number
of such inquiries
have already reached this office; as for example, one brothel asks for
brief of what English literature has to say about the evil of gambling.
is Scott's "St. Ronan's Well," [Lib 1824; Vol 1,
and especially George Eliot's
story of Fred Vincy in "Middlemarch," [Lib 1874]
not to mention Dickens' "Old
Curiosity Shop," [Lib 1841]
which are among the most impressive exposures
of the imbecility and disaster of gambling.
minister who wishes to remain nameless – and we do not blame him –
confides to ye
editor that Masonry is an invention of Satan, and that Masons are on
their way to
perdition. His letter recalls the saying of Father Taylor, who was a
and a great humorist, when he said that it would not do to send Emerson
Why, said he, the tide of immigration would set in that way.
man learn to look for the permanent in the mutable and fleeting; let
him learn to
bear the disappearance of things he was wont to reverence, without
losing his reverence;
let him learn that he is here, not to work, but to be worked upon; and
abyss open under abyss, and opinion displace opinion, all are at last
in the Eternal Cause:
my bark sink, 'tis to another sea."
many of us Masons
Live according to our creed;
How many lend a helping hand
To a brother when in need?
How many of us Masons
Have the lodge alone in mind
With the work so letter perfect
The great TRUTH we'll never find?
How many of us Masons,
Both of high and low degree,
Are just button-wearing members
Even as you and me?
How many of us Masons
Have the true idea at heart,
And each is striving daily
To do his humble part?
How many of us Masons,
When the gavel sounds to close,
Carries with him from the lodge room
Better thoughts as home he goes?
the victors and the vanquished are weeping
for their dead,
When are hushed the vindications, the last wild prayers are said,
When from heaps of desolation, so late a fair domain,
To the wondering stars arises the incense of the slain,
O Thou of everlasting love, whose name we vainly call,
In Thy long-suffering tenderness have mercy on us all.
Do Thou dispel the primal fear, drive out the horde of hates,
And wake the Joy of Brotherhood for which this sad world waits.
To dare to take God's name in vain,
Or be careful of our speech;
From evil thoughts and words refrain,
And practice what we preach?
To boast of your fine jewels,
Or purify your heart;
To be a man and Mason
And act a Mason's part?
To fail to help your brothers,
Or your obligations fill?
To leave it for the others,
Or mean and say 'I will?'
A Nook With A Book"
cast down by the gigantic tragedy of world-war, equally by the
magnitude of its
horror and by his own inability to grasp it as a whole – so vast are
and so rams the stage on which it is enacted – ye editor took down the
of Thomas Hardy, "The Dynasts." [Lib
(Macmillan Co.) He wished to
re-read it, having just read an account of how it was acted on the
stage in London
recently – a feat he did not believe possible – and he is grateful for
so, albeit he rejects more firmly than ever the Lucretian philosophy
that runs through
a drama of the ten years of the Napoleonic wars, in three parts,
one hundred and thirty-five scenes, and more than five hundred
characters. The action
ranges over all Europe where the great battles were fought, through
camps, in courts,
in parliament, and not a great figure in any of the lands involved at
the time is
missing from the cast; hardly a high-lighted incident in the struggle
Truly, a wonderful achievement of genius, almost as if the historical
of Shakespeare were rolled into one stupendous drama. By a miraculously
the scene unfolds, and we are now in Trafalgar, now at Leipsig, now at
of Moscow, now at Waterloo; now hearing Wellington swear, now watching
– the while those long dead men talk in a speech but slightly changed
from the records
of State papers, memoirs, and letters of long ago.
so – and this is what held ye editor as by a spell – we are shown the
from above and without the world, as it is discussed by disembodied
who sit aloft and aloof, watching the drama and offering interpretation
comment. The Spirit of the Years, the chorus of the Pities, the Ironic
Shade of the Earth, and the Spirit of Rumor hold high conclave,
describing the acts
of the drama with vividness of crisp detail, and debating their
the Pities are wondering why such things can be as the Dynasts do, how
can be so sacrificed to the rulers and have no profit of it all; while
Spirit mocks. The Spirit of the Years has no explanation save that it
is so. And
ever recurs the insistence that the Power which moves the show, Dynasts
as their tools, works unknowingly, purposelessly, blindly, even as the
in the end.
fatalistic atheism ye editor has no affinity – holding, rather, with
we may know the universe as "roads for traveling souls," and also "that
they go toward the best, toward something great" – none the less he
a retreading of "The Dynasts" and turned to the contemplation of the
war with a more cosmic view of it, seeing history repeating itself in
and in detail, catching hints of recurrences of events and similitudes,
the good working itself out through war, the Dynasts working their own
and the people awakening to be no longer duped into mutual murder. So
mote it be.
as we say, the next book opened was a noble volume on "Greek
by John Burnet, (Macmillan Co.) and as
luck would have it, ye editor, turning through the many pages, fell
upon the analysis
and discussion of "Phaedrus" – that grand argument for the immortality
of the soul, to which hardly a single reason has been added since that
far off time
– and he heard Socrates saying that such an argument ought to close
Whereupon he uttered that brief and wise prayer, putting into a few
words all his
beloved Pan, and all ye other gods of this place, grant
me to become beautiful in the inner man, and that whatever outward
things I have
may be at peace with those within. May I deem the wise man rich, and
may I have
such a portion of gold as none but a just man can either bear or
employ. Do we need
anything else, Phaedrus? For myself I have prayed enough."
the same prayer for me, too," said Phaedrus,"
for the possession of friends should be share and share alike."
how wise, reminding one of the prayer of two boys whereof we read in
the old "Katha
Upanishad" of India: "May He protect us both. May He enjoy us both. May
our wisdom grow bright together." One may search the collects of the
in vain for a parallel to this – the dear love of man for his comrade
a sense of care for the joy of God.
learning, this volume is so original in its interpretations that it
debate, especially its efforts to disentangle Socrates from Plato in
There is a noteworthy chapter of Pythagoras, "the man who first united
with religion," and he is given a higher place in the pantheon of
than ever before – above even Socrates himself. Ye editor will return
to this volume
at another time, taking up the analysis of "Philebus," the dialogue in
which Plato expounds his philosophy of numbers, if so he may clear the
air in respect
of the use of numbers as spiritual symbols, about which there has been
so much fog
in Masonic thought.
poetry? It is music associated with pleasurable ideas, said Edgar Poe,
who had more
music and fewer pleasurable ideas than almost any man – his song having
to do with the beauty of death, or else the death of beauty. Macaulay,
who was sane
to a fault – hopelessly sane – held that poetry is a form of insanity.
Lamb, who knew more about both poetry and insanity, made it a point to
Perhaps we cannot do better than accept the definition of Wordsworth,
is the breath and finer spirit of all knowledge; and if we say life
instead of knowledge
it is perfect.
editor is a lover of poetry – though he would not go as far as Lanier
and say that
poets are the only truth-tellers – and he has no patience with those
who say that
we have no great poetry today. Why, only the other day he opened a
called "The Lonely Dancer," [Lib
by Richard Le Gallienne, and read lines
as perfect as ever were moulded by human lips. There is the song "To a
at Dawn," to which no one may fear to apply the term great – lines
to the "little creature of soft wings" in whose small feathered throat
"sings the long epic of the world." They are worthy of Shelley or
yet they came to birth in our time, and will be singing a hundred years
there is something, the song saith,
That makes me unafraid of death."
of poetry, here are the "Collected Poems" [Lib
1914, Vol 1,
of Arthur Edward Waite, so well-known
and highly honored among Masons – a man to whom this world is an
a place of sacraments and symbols; to whom the beauties of a beautiful
are always the vesture and the vesture only, of a world Unseen. The
Nature and the ritual of the seasons appeal to him as a great rite
forever in the
performing, and this sense of the wonder and bloom of the world gives
glow and color
to his song, and withal a richness of suggestion and finish of form.
hint so deeply, O mind within,
Of the going forth and the coming in
Of doves through an arch unbidden?
Do I not know that the whence and where
Of the life of man may be symboled there?
But in light so bright and on sward so fair
O let what is hidden be hidden."
Algernon Blackwood – he who wrote that divinely beautiful story of "The
of Fairyland," [Lib
wherein, if a man read with a mind "unwumbled,"
he will find his child-heart again – is a past-grand master of weird
stories. His new book, "Incredible Adventures" [Lib 1914]
– and well-named it surely is
– contains five "long-short" stories, each of which deals with the
The most remarkable is entitled "A Descent into Egypt," and tells how
the remotest past lays hold of an excavator who penetrates the tombs of
dynasties, until the present world becomes indifferent to him. George
his true soul at Thebes, and only a shell walks the streets of London.
a dangerous spell, we are told, for her worshippers. Behind the
stillness of hot,
windless days, behind the peace of calm, gigantic nights, it lurks
and irresistible. The stream of life runs backward and the heart lives
The pilfering of her ancient dead Egypt suffers still; she, in revenge,
her leisure on the living. Ay, it gives one the creeps to read about it.
one could remember all the striking phrases the startling and quick
insight, which he meets in books, what a rich mind would be his reward.
a story, reflecting much of nobility and love and a restrained and
quiet humor –
"Faces in the Dawn,' by Hagedorn [Lib 1915]
– in which ye editor found these
words which set him musing a whole evening, and the more he mused the
are not two worlds, one outside the house and one
inside; there are not two struggles. There is only one struggle, the
spiritual growth and none of us can fight it for others, and none of us
by Evelyn Underhill. Dent and Sons, London.
The King of the Dark Chamber, [Lib 1916]
by Tagore. Macmillan Co., New
The Rise of the American People, [Lib
by Roland G. Usher, Century Co., New York.
Vitruvius: Ten Books on Architecture, [Lib
translated by M. K. Morgan. Harvard University
Jacques de Molay, by Charles Francis Lamb. [Lib*]
Fraternity, by J. R. Hutchins, Ardmore. Okla. [Lib*]
faint light shining for a space;
A breath of wind upon the face;
A stirring in the mist; a sigh;
A sense of distance, height and sky;
A little wave of melody!
O but how beautiful to see
The light leaf dance upon the tree,
The bloom upon the hedgerow stirr'd
By the transport of a singing bird,
And – after darkness and eclipse-
The sun upon the sails of ships,
All up and down the dancing sea!
O but how beautiful to hear
A little whisper in the ear,
A smaller voice than note of bird,
A still small voice, a mighty word,
A whisper in the heart to say
That God is not so far away!
verdict which accumulates
From lengthening scroll of human fates,
Voice of earth to earth returned,
Prayers of Saints that inly burn,-
Saying, What is excellent,
As God lives, is permanent;
Hearts are dust, heart's loves remain;
Heart's love will meet thee again."
A Dictionary of Symbolical
Oli53 / auth. Oliver George. - London : Richard Spencer, 1853. - Vol. 1
: 1 : p. 408. - 12.0 MB.
A History of Free Masonry from 1829 to 1840
Oli41 / auth. Oliver George. - London : Richard Spencer, 1841. - Vol. 1
: 1 : p. 156. - 7.3 MB.
A Mirror for the Johannite Masons
Oli66 / auth. Oliver George. - New York : Masonic Publishing and
Manufacturing Co., 1866. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 196. - 10.9 MB.
A Prisoner in Fairyland
Bla13 / auth. Blackwood Algernon. - [s.l.] : Feedbooks & PG,
1913. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 340. - 1.6 MB.
Book of the Lodge 1849
Oli49 / auth. Oliver George. - London : Richard Spencer, 1849. - 1st
Edition : Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 176. - 3.3 MB.
Book of the Lodge 1864
Oli64 / auth. Oliver George. - London : Richard Spencer, 1864. - 3rd
Edition : Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 268. - 8.2 MB.
Collected Poems Vol 1
Wai14 / auth. Waite Arthur E.. - Edinburgh : Ballantyne, Hanson
& Co., 1914. - Vol. 1 : 2 : p. 395. - 10.5 MB.
Collected Poems Vol 2
Wai141 / auth. Waite Arthur E.. - Edinburgh : Ballantyne, Hanson
& Co., 1914. - Vol. 2 : 2 : p. 375. - 10.0 MB.
Early Greek Philosophy
Bur08 / auth. Burnet John. - London : Adam and Charles Black, 1908. -
2nd Edition : Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 445. - 17.8 MB.
Faces in the Dawn
Hag15 / auth. Hagedorn Herman. - New York : The Macmillan Co., 1915. -
Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 327. - 4.5 MB.
Historical Landmarks Vol 1
Oli46 / auth. Oliver George. - London : Richard Spencer, 1846. - Vol. 1
: 2 : p. 573. - 26.2 MB.
Historical Landmarks Vol 2
Oli461 / auth. Oliver George. - London : Richard Spencer, 1846. - Vol.
2 : 2 : p. 780. - 44.1 MB.
History and Antiquities of the Collegiate
Church of Beverley
Oli291 / auth. Oliver George. - Beverley : M. Turner, 1829. - Vol. 1 :
1 : p. 607. - Illustrated - 33.7 MB.
History of the Guild of the Holy Trinity,
Oli371 / auth. Oliver George. - Drury : Edward Bell Drury, Gazette
Office., 1837. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 148. - Illustrated - 6.5 MB.
Bla14 / auth. Blackwood Algernon. - London : Macmillan and Co., 1914. -
Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 378. - 11.4 MB.
Institutes of Masonic Jurisprudence
Oli59 / auth. Oliver George. - London : Richard Spencer, 1859. - Vol. 1
: 1 : p. 531. - 16.9 MB.
Monumental Antiquities of Grimsby
Oli251 / auth. Oliver George. - Hull : Isaac Wilson, 1825. - Vol. 1 : 1
: p. 149. - 7.4 MB.
Buc97 / auth. Buck Jirah D.. - Cincinnati : The Robert Clarke Co.,
1897. - 2 : Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 290.
Buc11 / auth. Buck Jirah D.. - Chicago : Indo-American Book Co., 1911.
- 5th Edition : Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 307. - 8.9 MB.
Old Charges of British Freemasons
Hug72 / auth. Hughan William J. - London : Simpkins, Marshall &
Co., 1872. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 113. - 8.2 MB.
Our Mutual Friend
Dic65 / auth. Dickens Charles. - London : Chapman & Hall, 1865.
- Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 733. - 39.4 MB - Illustrated.
Und15 / auth. Underhill Evelyn. - [s.l.] : Feedbooks & Project
Gutenberg, 1915. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 84. - 0.5 MB.
Remains of the Ancient Britons between Lincoln
Oli463 / auth. Oliver George. - London : Richard Spencer, 1846. - Vol.
1 : 1 : p. 69. - 3.6 MB.
Signs and Symbols Illustrated and Explained
Oli37 / auth. Oliver George. - London : Sherwood, Gilbert, and Piper,
1837. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 289. - 9.2 MB.
St. Ronan's Well Vol 1
Sco24 / auth. Scott Sir Walter. - Edinburgh : Archibald Constable
& Co., 1824. - Vol. 1 : 3 : p. 315. - 9.9 MB.
St. Ronan's Well Vol 2
Sco241 / auth. Scott Sir Walter. - Edinburgh : Archibald Constable
& Co., 1824. - Vol. 2 : 3 : p. 330. - 10.7 MB.
St. Ronan's Well Vol 3
Sco242 / auth. Scott Sir Walter. - Edinburgh : Archibald Constable
& Co., 1824. - Vol. 3 : 3 : p. 330. - 10.4 MB.
Ten Books on Architecture
Vit14 / auth. Vitruvius / trans. Morgan Morris H.. - Cambridge :
Harvard University Press, 1914. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 335. - 23.3 MB.
The Antiquities of Free-Masonry
Oli23 / auth. Oliver George. - London : G. and W. B. Whittaker, 1823. -
Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 393. - 13.4 MB.
The Antiquities Of Freemasonry Revised
Oli43 / auth. Oliver George. - London : Richard Spencer, 1843. - Vol. 1
: 1 : p. 374. - 16.0 MB.
Har04 / auth. Hardy Thomas. - [s.l.] : Project Gutenberg 2009, 1904. -
Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 521. - 1.6 MB.
The Golden Remains of the Early Masonic Writers
Oli47 / auth. Oliver George. - London : Richard Spencer, 1847. - Vol. 1
: 5 : p. 236. - 8.4 MB.
The Golden Remains of the Early Masonic Writers
Oli471 / auth. Oliver George. - London : Richard Spencer, 1847. - Vol.
2 : 5 : p. 313. - 9.9 MB.
The Golden Remains of the Early Masonic Writers
Oli67 / auth. Oliver George. - New York : Masonic Publishing and
Manufacturing Company, 1867. - Vol. 3 : 5 : p. 399. - 22.5 MB.
The Golden Remains of the Early Masonic Writers
Oli19 / auth. Oliver George. - Philadelphia : Geo. Howorth &
M'Carty & Davis, 1819. - Vol. 5 : 5 : p. 359. - Thaddeus M.
Harris - Discourses on Public Occasions; 18.1 MB.
The History of Initiation in Twelve Lectures
Oli55 / auth. Oliver George. - New York : Jno. W. Leonard &
Co., 1855. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 245. - A New Edition - 12.9 MB.
The Key to the Mysteries
Lev61 / auth. Levi Eliphas / trans. Crowley Aleister. - [s.l.] : Caput
Mortuum for the Ayin Quadma'ah Movement, 1861. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 123. -
The King of the Dark Chamber
Tag16 / auth. Tagore Sir Rabindranath / trans. Tagore Sir Rabindranath.
- Norwood : Berwick & Smith Co., 1916. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 214. -
The Lonely Dancer
Gal14 / auth. Gallienne Richard Le. - Toronto : Bell &
Cockburn, 1914. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 177. - 3.3 MB.
The Magic Flute
Moz11 / auth. Mozart Wolfgang A. - Cambridge : W. Heffer &
Sons, Lt., 1911. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 43. - 1.6 MB.
The Masonick Minstrel
Eas18 / auth. Eastman Luke. - Boston : T. Row, 1818. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p.
212. - 15.9 MB.
The Old Curiosity Shop
Dic41 / auth. Dickens Charles. - London : Chapman & Hall, 1841.
- Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 462. - Illustrated - 38.8 MB.
The Origin of the Royal Arch Order
Oli671 / auth. Oliver George. - London : Richard Spencer, 1867. - Vol.
1 : 1 : p. 266. - 7.8 MB.
The Queen of Sheba
Gol90 / auth. Goldmark Karl. - Boston : Oliver Ditson Company, 1890. -
Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 46. - 1.9 MB.
The Revelations of a Square
Oli551 / auth. Oliver George. - London : Richard Spencer, 1855. - Vol.
1 : 1 : p. 496. - 17.3 MB.
The Rise of the American People
Ush14 / auth. Usher Roland G. - New York : Century Co., 1914. - Vol. 1
: 1 : p. 453. - 22.4 MB.
The Spirit of Masonry in Moral and Elucidatory
Hut95 / auth. Hutchinson William. - Carlisle : F. Jollie, 1795. - Vol.
1 : 1 : p. 370. - 13.8 MB.
The Star in the East
Oli25 / auth. Oliver George. - London : G. and B. W. Whittaker, 1825. -
Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 190. - 4.0 MB.
The Symbol of Glory
Oli50 / auth. Oliver George. - London : Richard Spencer, 1850. - Vol. 1
: 1 : p. 397. - 11.6 MB.
The Theocratic Philosophy of Freemasonry
Oli56 / auth. Oliver George. - London : R. Spencer, 1856. - Vol. 1 : 1
: p. 391. - 13.0 MB.
Works Vol 06 - Joseph Balsamo
Dum02DW06 / auth. Dumas Alexander. - New York : P.P. Collier and Son,
1902. - Vol. 6 : 30 : p. 619. - Illustrated - 46.3 MB.