A Journal for the Masonic Student
Published Monthly by the National Masonic Research Society
Vol. 8 No. 5 – May 1922
MASONRY AND THE WORLD'S WORK
Bro. H.L. Haywood, Iowa
(Written for the Detroit Masonic News and published by permission of the editor of that publication)
ONE MIGHT quibble a good deal about the exact significance of the important question that you have posed, but I take it that you mean to ask if I believe that Freemasonry should discharge its influence altogether, so to speak, into its own vitals and in its own interests, or if it should turn some of its influence into the great world outside itself, in order that that world may feel something of the force and beauty of Freemasonry. I am very sure that you do not mean to infer that at any time or under any circumstances Masonic lodges should engage in politics, or as lodges assume an active part in the direction of public affairs. Needless to say, I should instantly reply in the latter instance that Masonic lodges never should — as lodges — engage in politics of any kind, or anything like politics: but I am quite as ready to say that I do believe that Freemasonry should cease to hibernate inside its own hollow tree, and that it should be harnessing its great powers up to some of the worthful social causes in orier that it may do something for the world in general.
I believe that it was a good thing for the Fraternity to attempt to go abroad in order to lend fraternal aid and encouragement to Masonic brethren there, and to their friends.
I believe it was a good thing for Freemasonry to play the part it did in the Revolutionary War, and in the founding of the United States government.
I believe it is a good thing for Freemasonry to watch with jealous care the interests of the public school system of the land, not only because the disruption or disintegration of that great educational system would defeat many of its own most cherished purposes but also because such a disintegration would work an irreparable injury to this nation.
I believe it was a good thing for a large number of our Grand Lodges to fashion the Masonic Service Association of the United States in order that all our Grand Lodges may work as a unity in any cause that may call for the assistance of the Fraternity as a whole. Freemasonry now has its own Red Cross system, and that is a fact of which every one of us may feel proud.
I believe it was a noble thing for this same Masonic Service Association to send to President Harding, at the beginning of the great conference on the limitation of armament, a resolution in which Brother Harding was assured the support and congratulations of the Association, which represented at the time thirty-four jurisdictions; and I know that the members of all the other jurisdictions would readily have signed the resolutions, which adequately expressed the fact that Masons, aloof them, pray for the peace of the world, and stand ready to lend their aid to any project for bringing to pass the end of war.
I believe that the Fraternity could — if only it would — do very much toward bringing about a better understanding among the nations of the world to the end that they may learn to live together upon the level and discover how good a thing it would be for peoples to live together in harmony. If that good will does not come among nations it can never rest secure inside any one nation, because in the community of the world no nation can live or die unto itself.
And furthermore I believe that it would be a good thing if every Masonic lodge made it a point to take up some kind of community service in its own locality. This service need not be advertised to the profane or undertaken with a flourish of trumpets, but it could be organized in such a manner as to win the support of every Freemason in the province of the lodge. Many have been the explanations of Masonic apathy, of the indifference which falls upon so many men, even after they have passed the chairs: to my own mind one of the cardinal causes of this apathy lies in the fact that in so many cases the lodge is a mere engine which keeps all its wheels turning but does not accomplish anything by its discharge of power. A lodge that is content with meeting twice a week for initiations and once a month to transact its little modicum of business, and then "lets it go at that," isn't much good to itself or to the world; and many of the better men among its members will soon grow disgusted with such child's play, and remain home. If that lodge would only enlist its energies in some worthful community cause it would find that its members would soon lose their apathy. Social service is necessary for Masonic health.
In the discharge of my own humble duties in the National Masonic Research Society I receive and reply to a great grist of letters which come to me from brethren all over the world, and it will be no betrayal of confidence if I say here, in pages read by Craftsmen, that a large number of these letters contain complaints against the fruitlessness of so much of our Masonic endeavor. "Why is it," many of these brethren ask, "that Freemasonry isn't doing something with itself?" If one will carefully scan the fifty or more Masonic journals published in this land; if he will keep a weather eye out for the Masonic books now being published; and furthermore if he will study the Grand Lodge Proceedings each year (one of the most valuable things a Masonic student can do for himself) he will find that the Fraternity as a whole is now in a kind of ferment, and that the multitudes of young men who have joined us during the past five or six years are impatiently asking — if I may echo one of the now melancholy catch phrases of the Great War — "where do we go from here?" These men are not satisfied with meekly sitting on the sidelines watching the ceremonies: they are eager to see all the things taught in those ceremonies at work in the world, catching on to people's minds, and taking effect in the general life. In other words, I am quite sure that the rank and file of members, as things now are, are not only in favor of, but insistently clamantly in favor of Freemasonry's taking some part "in the work of the world."
If any of the more conservative brethren shrink from this, fearing lest it violate the old traditions or transgress the Ancient Landmarks, let them in all patience study those ancient traditions, and learn to know what Freemasonry actually has done in the past! If they will do this they will discover that the more or less stereotyped American Freemasonry of the 1890's is in no sense representative of the Freemasonry that the world at large has known these past two centuries. It would surprise even the ardent and restless youngest member could he learn just how much the Fraternity has actually done in carrying on the "world's work" during those two centuries! Recently, while going through all the references to Freemasonry in the Encyclopaedia Britannica and in the Catholic Encyclopedia I was struck by the fact that in almost every instance the Fraternity is mentioned as having been at work to win for men more liberty, more equality, and more democracy.
Consider why it was that Freemasonry was banned from Russia. Learn what it did in Germany in the 1848's, and what part it played in Belgium and Holland in 1820. Read its history in Austria and Hungary and discover why it was so cordially hated by the aristocracy that they at last violently destroyed it. Consider the part that it played in the liberation and unification of the Italian Peninsula, and recall how that Garibaldi himself was an active Freemason. Go through the story of Freemasonry's role in France from the time when it assisted so powerfully to overturn the Ancient Regime until the present, when it is once more in a death grapple with the Jesuits who again got their innings during the Great War; and how that during that long period the Craft was very largely instrumental in gaining a public school system for France, and in securing the separation of church and state! The Republic of Portugal is often called "a child of Masonry"; while in Spain the Fraternity has been persecuted again and again on the grounds that it was instilling the ideas and ideals of democracy into the minds of the Spanish. There is no need to lengthen this list of references, save to say that the part played by the Fraternity in our own land has not only not been exaggerated, but hasn't even yet been fully recognized. One of these days it will be proved that the Craft saved the Colonists at the most critical stage of the Revolutionary War, and that if it had not been for Freemasonry the War would have been lost, and the freeing of the Colonists would have been delayed if not defeated, and a very different type of government would have been constructed. These last statements sound strong but they can be every one substantiated by incontrovertible evidence.
I don't mention these hints from history in order to illustrate my point that the Craft should do its own right part in carrying on "the world's work," for an illustration has no weight in logic: nor do I advance this as a precedent for our social activity, because a precedent may merely permit — not demand — a given course of action: I recall this history in order that it may reveal what has ever been the nature of the Fraternity, and indicates that what it has been in the past it will necessarily be in the future.
Sooner or later, Brother Editor, we shall not raise the question that you have raised because by that time it will have become taken for granted that Freemasonry, being a public institution, owes certain duties to the world of which it is a part, just as every other institution owes social duties. The question then will be as to ways and means and as to specific tasks. At present we can't talk much about specific tasks, and as to ways and means that must be decided as the occasion arises.
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FURTHER NOTES ON THE ELEUSINIAN MYSTERIES
Bro. N. W. Hayden, Ontario
IN THE BUILDER for March, 1920, were published "Some Notes on the Mysteries of Eleusis," which I sent by way of a comment on the valuable articles on this subject from the pen of Brother Dudley Wright, of which Part IV appeared in THE BUILDER for September, 1919. In this portion, and in his little book which reproduces the whole,  Brother Wright offers this question, "It would be interesting to know why . . . wheat was chosen (for exaltation); why the ear more than the grain; why it should be emphasized that it was 'gathered'; . . . and in what manner it secured, or ensured, for the individual a blissful existence after death."
An attempt to answer this query, after so many centuries have passed since it ceased apparently to be a living usage, would surely be speculative enough for any of us, but I addressed myself to it and trust my answer will not be judged as falling short of its intent.
Let me first draw attention to a quotation from Vol. II of Frazer's Golden Bough. "In the great mysteries solemnized at Eleusis in the month of September, the union of the sky god Zeus with the corn goddess Demeter appear to have been represented by the union of the hierophant with the priestess of Demeter, who acted the parts of the god and goddess. But this intercourse was only dramatic or symbolical,  for the hierophant had temporarily deprived himself of his virility by an application of hemlock.  The torches having been extinguished the pair descended into a murky place while the throng of worshippers awaited in anxious suspense the result of the mystic congress, on which they believed their own salvation to depend."
"After a time the hierophant reappeared and, in a blaze of light, silently exhibited to the assembly a reaped ear of corn,  the fruit of the divine marriage. Then, in a loud voice, he proclaimed 'Queen Bromo has brought forth a sacred boy, Brimas' by which he meant 'The Mighty One has brought forth the Mighty.' The corn-mother, in fact, had given birth to her child, the corn, and her travail pangs were enacted in the sacred drama. This revelation of the reaped ear of corn appears to have been the crowning act of the Mysteries."
In addition to the above, there is the witness of Hippolytus, one of the "early Fathers" (A. D. 160-236), who was bitterly opposed to the religions of the heathen. In his Philosophoumena he gives a "Translation and Refutation" of the rites and teachings contained in a Naasene manuscript which had been written for private circulation, somewhat like our Book of The Work, which contained the following: "Knowledge of the Perfect Man is deep and hard to comprehend. For the beginning of Perfection is Gnosis of Man, but Gnosis of God is perfect Perfection.  And the Phrygians called him also 'Plucked Green Wheat Ear,' and after the Phrygians, the Athenians so designate him, when, in the secret rites of Eleusis they show those who receive in silence the final initiation there into the Great, and Marvelous, and Most Perfect Epoptic Mystery, a plucked wheat ear. And this wheat ear is also with the Athenians the Light-Giver perfect and mighty, from the Inexpressible, the Holy Son born of Our Lady, the Virgin Spirit."
One can see by the foregoing that in these Mysteries an ear of corn, which had been reaped — i.e., separated from its root and stalk — was used as an emblem of the Deity, who came through the gate of physical birth and separation for the good of his worshippers, even as the corn itself has to be separated and prepared that our bodies may be nourished thereby.
"But why," asks Brother Wright, "was wheat chosen out for this purpose from among all the plants which revive and die in the course of the year?"
I believe there is very much more hidden in this query than appears on the surface, for it takes us back to the origins of life, the "Divine Kings" of old Egypt, and all that title connotes. It is a strange fact of our terrestrial life that wheat has never been traced to any form of wild grass. It is older than history; it has been found wrapped up with mummies, and the Book of the Dead has several references to it as the "Corn of Life"; evidently of a symbolic nature as its height varies from three to seven cubits according to the spiritual condition of the servant of Horus who is "gleaning the fields of Aanroo," i. e., receiving the due reward of his actions, good or bad. In one sentence, Isis says "I reveal to mortals the mysteries of wheat and corn."
Plato in his Critias (I think) and in his Fourth Book of Laws, suggests that just as man governs his flocks and herds, not by one of their own kind, but by a superior being, so the Creator ruled primitive humanity with Divine Shepherds. When these were retired, "Inventors" appeared who "discovered" fire, wheat, wine and letters. Brother Wright tells us, "According to some ancient writers the Greeks, prior to the time of Demeter and Triptolemus, fed upon the acorns of the ilex or the evergreen oak. Acorns, according to Virgil, were used as food in Epiros; and in Spain, according to Strabo. The Scythians made bread with acorns. By another tradition before Demeter's time, men neither cultivated corn nor tilled the ground, but roamed the mountains and woods in search for the wild fruits which the earth produced. Isocrates wrote, "Ceres hath made the Athenians two presents of the greatest consequence: corn, which brought us out of a state of brutality; and the Mysteries, which teach the initiated to entertain the most agreeable expectations touching death and eternity." Thus the Greeks trace their knowledge of tillage to the goddess Ceres. The Chinese trace theirs to the instructions of "celestial genii." These were the Kabiri, also named in the Vedas the Agni-putra, both terms meaning "The Sons of Flame," who were too, the first workers in minerals and metals, the true Te-Baal-Kayin, whose name is remembered because they were "Lords of the Smiths" and not because of any worldly possessions they may have acquired.
One of the most plausible explanations of the fact that the Egyptian civilization seems to have no beginning, is that it was originally in that respect, a colony from Atlantis, coeval with another in Yucatan, for knowledge of which we are so indebted to the labors of Dr. and Mrs. Le Plongeon. An extended review of the evidence on this point can also be gained from Atlantis by Ignatius Donnelly. Bro. Churchward in his great work Signs and Symbols of Primordial Man writes: "We are enabled to give two figures from photographs of 'Two Gods' recently discovered near the ruins of Mitla, by Prof. Marshall H. Saville. (Mitla is one of the ruined cities of Yucatan.) These two figures are symbolically typical of the Egyptian Horus, in two of his characters. The one on the right has a crown on his head, with four ears of corn, two on each side, and between them the hieroglyphic figure for running water. In front, between his arms, is the Egyptian ideographic hieroglyph RHI — 'The Garden of Earth.' His tongue is hanging out, apparently as two tongues, symbolically uttering or saying that he is the Lord and Bringer of food and of water; this is identically the same as the Egyptian at Philae, where 'The Corn Spirit' is represented by stalks and ears of corn springing from its mummy near running water — i. e., Horus is represented as a bringer of food and water; which must be interesting to Freemasons as being the origin of 'an ear of corn near a fall of water.'
"The figure on the left side is one of the Mexican depictions of Horus as 'The Light of the World.' He has a crown on his head surmounted by several groups (there should be seven) of Three Rods, or Rays, of Light. In front between the arms is a head with a rope around its neck which passes over the shoulders of the god, symbolical of a power bringing death, darkness, or ignorance to the Light Eternal, through or by Horus. The one Power through whom you are led from death to the mansions of the Blessed."
On page 381 of Mexican Antiquities, by Dr. Edward Soler, figure A, Horus is seen as "The Young Ear of Corn" represented here by maize. He is giving life and plenty, he is the bringer of food, of life, to the world.
In Memoires de la Mission Francaise, by Lefebvre, Vol. II, pages 29 and 31, are shown figures from the coffin of the Pharoah Seti 1st,  amongst which is the "grain-god" represented as a man wearing two full ears of wheat upon his head.
It will be useful at this point to quote from the translation of the Book of Gates, as delineated on the inside and outside of this sarcophagus, for which we are indebted to the Efforts of Dr. Wallis Budge:
"On the left of the course of Afu-Ra are twelve male figures, who represent the 'workers in the wheat fields of the Tuat.' . . . The ears of wheat are said to he the 'members of Osiris,' and thus the great god is the food upon which the gods and the beatified live in the Tuat.... Every ear of wheat which flourished there was a member of the body of Osiris, for this god himself was the wheat-god, and was the source of life of every plant of wheat in his kingdom. Thus it follows that the beatified lived upon the body of their god, whom they ate daily.... The texts, from the earliest period, speak of Osiris as the everliving and Everlasting god, and the Prince of eternity, and as he was the wheat-god it alas his body which was the 'bread of everlastingness' according to the texts which were written under the Fifth and Sixth Dynasties, about 3600-8300 B. C.... Though in the texts under consideration the grain-god Nepra is mentioned by name, it is Osiris who assumes the lordship of the celestial grain. The connection between Maat, or righteousness, and the grain-god is not easy to explain, but it seems to me that we have here a mixture of two conceptions of Osiris. As the grain-god he would satisfy those who wished for a purely material heaven, where hunger would be unknown; and as the god of righteousness, of whom the spiritually-minded hoped to become the counterpart, he would become the hope and consolation, and the symbol of the Eternal God."
I have been unable to get a copy of this figure, but it would probably be similar to the one shown in Egyptian Mythology by Max Muller, figure 73, page 66, as that of Nepri (male) or Nepret (female), divine guardian of grain. This authority writes: "The god of grain, who in female form is sometimes identified with Renemutet, the goddess of harvest, is rather more of a poetic abstraction, like the gods 'Abundance' and 'Plenty.' In this way Nepri is Lord of Food generally rather than a god of grain particularly."
I think Brother Wright's query is answered fairly completely by the foregoing, but there is a further development which is worth consideration as regards the last sentence of his question. As I pointed out in my "Notes" of March, 1920, the Mysteries of Eleusis were the nearest approach to modern Freemasonry of which we have any historical evidence. For nearly 1500 years they exerted their influence for good over most of the known world; their initiates were numbered by the thousand, and all the civilized peoples of the time were represented annually in that little corner of the world, even as in our own day the otherwise obscure village of Ober-Ammergau attracted the citizens of Christendom to its decennial Passion Play.
Is it to be supposed that the fanaticism of the Byzantine Christians entirely destroyed these ancient and worshipful ceremonies? I think not. How many of our modern religious customs, ceremonies, and anniversaries are but a thin veneer of changed names laid upon a foundation of "pagan" usages, whose inherent life continued because they were connected with that inner shrine in humanity where dwells the Great Architect, no matter how variously our minds may cognize and name Him!
And just as the popularly useful features of the Eleusinia are reborn in our Masonic usages, so, I think, the essential intent of the last and greatest of its series of Mysteries has been preserved for us in a custom which to many today is, as it was to our Greek forbears, an approach to and communion with our vision of Deity, the most revered and intimate of all our religious acts.
In the Encyclopaedia of Religions under the subdivision "Christian, Western," of the subject "Sacraments" we are shown how the Church Fathers, Tertullian, Jerome, Cyprian, and Augustine, used the Latin word "sacramentum" as an equivalent of the Greek word "musterion," the chief requisite in this valuation being the mutual use of a material symbol, of an intelligible reality, or to paraphrase the definition in the Catechism — it must be an outward and physical sign of an inward and psychical process. Augustine also admits that every religion, true or false, has its visible signs or sacrament (Cont. Faust. XIX, XI).
From this same source, under the general heading of "Sacraments," we read: "In the Eleusinia certain acts of a sacramental character had a place.... Apart from other things done or seen, they partook of a cup of 'kukeon,' a thick gruel of meal and water resembling the draught of barley, groats, water and pennyroyal leaves drunk by the mourning Demeter after her nine days fast. The unamended text of Clement of Alexandria suggests the handling of a sacred object, rather than the tasting of a sacred food. What did this drinking and eating mean to the worshippers? Some enquirers have seen in it a sacramental communion with Demeter in her passion, e. g., Gardner in his Origins of the Lord's Supper."
My conclusion, too, arrived at this same result, as the only explanation of a custom honored through centuries of observance. It must have satisfied some more or less conscious need in the psychologic economy of its participants, and our own personal experiences will sympathize with them. Why should we think like the priests with Cortez and Pizarro, who held that the signs of the cross and the eucharistic ceremonies they found in the New World had been planted there by Satan to deceive a people who were ignorant of the "Holy Mother Church"? Is it not rather more worthy of our motto, "Follow Reason," and our belief in an everliving and immanent Builder, to see in these ancient customs the evidence of a divine method through which each succeeding race of man, after it has come to a certain growth of spiritual evolution, can have unsealed in its inmost sanctuary, a new fount of energy wherewith to meet new trials and win new victories? One can see herein the vision that inspired the Eastern prayer, the most sacred verse of the Rig-Veda, the "Gayatri" whose beauty I have not found surpassed anywhere — "Oh Thou, that givest sustenance to the universe, Thou from whom all things proceed, and to whom all shall return, unveil that face of the true sun, now hidden by this vase of golden light, that we may know the Truth and do our whole duty as we journey to Thy sacred seat." Three thousand years after the mind that framed this prayer had left its corporeal tenement, we find the same hope and desire embodied in Cardinal Newman's famous hymn, "Lead, Kindly Light"; and Tennyson voices our thought that through prayer "men are bound by gold chains up to the throne of God." The Great Architect has many names and wears many vestures, in the minds of His offspring, yet withal "He inhabiteth Eternity" as Brother Hosmer wrote in THE BUILDER for May, 1917. Happy are they who know this, whether Hindoo, Eleusinian, or the man of today.
- "The Eleusinian Mysteries & Rites," by Dudley Wright, with an Introduction by the Rev. J. Fort Newton, D. Litt., D. D. ↩
- As to the symbolic nature of the union, Frazer gives quotations from Tertullian, Ad Nationes, II, 7; Amasenus, in Migne's Patrologia Graeca, XL, col. 324; Hippolytus, Refutatic omnium EIaeresium, Vol. 8, pp. 162-4, etc. ↩
- In antiquity it was believed that an ointment or plaster of hemlock applied to the genital organs prevented them from discharging their function. See Dioscorides, De Materia Medica IV, 79; Pliny, Nat. History XXV, 154. Dr. J. B. Bradbury, Downing Professor of Medicine in the University of Cambridge, informs me that this belief is correct. ↩
- Perhaps it may be necessary to remind American readers that Wheat is always known as "corn" in Europe; whereas the Corn of the United States is known there as "maize" or "Indian corn.' ↩
- "Perfect" as used here is a technical term of the Schools. It does not indicate a quality, as with us today, but rather a rank, somewhat as our term "worshipful" in Masonic usage. ↩
- This coffin was carved from alabaster, and is now in the Sir John Sloane Museum, in London, England. ↩
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Bro. Malcolm W. Bingay, Michigan
MAN IN his egotism has quarrelled about religion since the first day of recorded history; from the cloud worship of the first Aryan down to our own sadly disturbed times it has been ever the same: martyrs have given up their anguished souls, armies have been massacred, empires have been shattered and civilizations sent to decay — all in the name of God. And yet through all these wars about religion there never has been and there never can be a religious war for a religious war is a contradiction in terms: no one can love God and at the same time hate his brother man.
Religion has been the pretext for war, but for an explanation of the hate which prompts men to fight we must turn from the fields of religion to the study of psychology, and it is a simple fact in psychology that we dislike, even unto hate, those who disagree with us.
The more strongly we feel a thing the more firmly we believe in the merit of our feeling; our logic appeals to us as absolute and we subconsciously justify our attitude often to the exclusion, in our narrow intensity, of possible outstanding facts. It all seems so simple and sane and understandable to us from our own personal viewpoint that we marvel at the inability of others to understand and see as we do. The average man, when filled with the ardor of an idea resents having anybody fail to agree with him in that ardor; the one who refuses to be converted to his attitude is either maddeningly stupid and unworthy of further consideration and sympathy, or he is purposely venal and vicious. The ratio of this resentment depends on the strength of the advocate's ardor, on his narrowness or breadth of mind, and on his inner spiritual qualities or lack of them.
Christ understood and forgave; too many of his followers, or those who devoutly believe they are his followers, scream for the tar and the torch. As Swift said:
"Some men have just enough religion to hate each other and not enough to love one another."
The blame cannot be placed upon religion, but rather upon our failure to understand the three impulses by which man lives, moves and has his being: First, instinct — that something which man shares with the animals, the simple impulse to exist; Second — reason, that something by which he is able to differentiate himself from the animals and through which he has piled up, through the ages, his material wealth; Third — spirit, that indefinable, ineffable Something transcending both instinct and reason and which permits him, in his loftier moods to glimpse faintly a possible answer to those eternal questions which have ever harried his mortal reason, but which leave his immortal soul calm and at peace with the Infinite. But Man is ever the egotist; he is proud that he is a reasoning animal; and he has struggled throughout the ages to gain answer to those questions by reason alone.
By reason he has built the cities of the earth; by reason he has encompassed the globe; by reason he has made the temporal triumphs on which our civilization now exists-and which seems to be crumbling again into the dust. The spirit alone can save mankind from himself and his ruthless reasoning. Terrible as was the World War through which we have just gone, there is one thing more terrible: the state of society which makes such a thing possible. The battles of the Western front in France were but outward manifestations of the war which tore the hearts of men before the guns were unleashed. Peace is a state of mind, and the war was raging in the minds of men long ere the first gun sung its song of death in the year 1914. When a world is bad enough to make war, war follows even as the boil protrudes its ulcerous ugliness when the body is bad enough to make boils!
We have boasted of our Age of Reason, and it has been an age of reason — reason without spirit, without faith in our God and our fellow man, reason like a giant ship rushing in circles driven madly on by powerful engines with no rudder to guide its course.
The first question which stirred the mind of primitive man concerned his God. Since the first shepherd, stretched on the hills at night, wondered, man has asked himself these questions and has tried by reason alone to solve them:
What is the nature of God?
What is the origin of the world?
Whence came we? Whither do we go? And why?
They are the questions on which all the warring theologies of the world have been built; and they cannot be answered by reason alone — they cannot be answered by reason at all, for they take in the realms of the immortal and we are only mortal. As Plotinus, the Alexandrian, said: "I am a finite being; how can I comprehend the infinite? As soon as I comprehend the infinite, I am infinite myself." Human reason is a limited and an erring faculty, unable to grasp "the sorry scheme of things entire" even as the stillest lake fails to reflect the sky as a whole. But reasoning man will not permit of such a thought; he will answer and explain to please himself and applaud his own wisdom.
From Thales, Plato and Aristole to Des Cartes, Fichte and Schelling, man the reasoning animal has run in the revolving squirrel cage of his reason, trying to solve the mystery of immortality on his mortal treadmill; from Copernicus, Galilee, Kepler and Newton to Einstein; from Locke to James; from Pyrrho to Anatole France; from the Sacred Bull Amon of Egypt to the psycho-analysis of Freud; from Apsu and Tiamit of Babylonia to Edisonian incandescence; from the fable of Prometheus unbound to the dream of the arrested energy of the atom — thus man has sought in the stars and in the human brain for answer to the riddle of existence, that answer which is hidden away in his own heart. And always he runs in a circle that runs with him; Hegel is applauded for saying that to which Heraclitus gave utterance two thousand years before, and a modern Pythagoras still stands at the shore of a strange sea, pondering the Whence? the Whither? and the Why?
"There was a door to which I found no key," sang old Omar and for him there was no key and for him who cannot find it within his own soul there will be no key, for the key is the key of faith, the key of the spirit which transcends reason. "Faith," said Tolstoy, "is that by which man lives." That faith is the song in the soul of man when he ceases to run the circles of his reason, when he rises above the earthly passions of greed and lust and hate, and sits him down in meekness and humility, awed by the mightiness of the universe about him — and listens.
The history of human understanding is the history of man's failure to rise above his own being; he cannot by the boot-straps of his reason pull himself above the rim of the bowl of Plato — the Tower of Babel is not the story of ancient days, it is the outstanding fact of our civilization today. The question that begins with a childlike wonderment and a childlike glory in our self-sufficiency ends in an aged doubt. All metaphysics, all philosophy, have swung the circle back to the beginning point. We are circumscribed and kept within due bounds when in our egotism we trust to intellect alone. On the grave of the cynical Montaigne there are engraved his own words in mockery to his dust: "What do I know?"
Primitive man was guided alone by instinct; to eat, to propagate, to exist was the only urge within his being which gave itself expression; dormant within him were reason and spirit. When man began to wonder he began to reason, and when he began to reason his material development started. So not in vain have all the philosophers of all the world pondered on the unknowable; for while they have not found that for which they sought they have developed the cerebral functioning by which man finds his thought processes laid out for him. The squirrel running in its revolving cage has developed itself for the duties inherent to that cage. Seeking answer to the unknowable by the rule of reason, man has been able to grasp and understand the knowable.
Throughout the ages there have been flashes of that spirit which completes the triangle of man's impulses; yet we have but to point to the war, the chaos and anarchy of today, of the hate and suspicion which sweeps the world to know that it has not yet spread its divine effulgence so far over the earth that we have with us a social conscience, a social mysticism, which, when it comes, will be that brotherly love and affection — outward manifestations of the spirit within us — symbolized by the trowel and cement of Masonry.
Instinct without reason leaves man as the beast of the field; reason without conscience is a ruthless Frankenstein which shall destroy mankind; the spirit alone, working through the alembic of man's inner self, must be the censor and control of reason. Our "Age of Reason" has been an age of blind hate, of greed, of horrid fighting and of awful consequence. We stand at the crossroads. We have no alternative. We must go one way or the other. Either we must cooperate or go on fighting until the last battle-axed, bullet-riddled, gas-torn torso writhes to its end and man is no more. We must find understanding, born of the spirit, to bring to this blood-stained globe the peace of God. And as long as we have within our own hearts hatred for our fellow man, and engender that hate in the hearts of others by seeking evil in them rather than purity in ourselves, just so long do we delay the oncoming of the Great Brotherhood.
"The man who has the life of the spirit within him views the love of man and woman, both in himself and others, quite differently from the man who is exclusively dominated by mind," writes Bertrand Russell. "He sees in his moments of insight, that in all human beings there is something deserving of love, something mysterious, something appealing, a cry out of the night, a groping journey and a possible victory. When his instinct loves, he welcomes its help in seeing and feeling the value of the human being whom he loves. Instinct becomes a reinforcement in spiritual insight. What instinct tells him spiritual insight confirms, however much the mind may be aware of littleness, limitations, and the enclosing walls that prevent the spirit from shining forth. His spirit divines in all men what his instinct shows him is the object of his love."
Socrates was the first to discover this truth in the development of his ethies. "Man," he said, "is the measure of all things. Descend deeper into his personality and you will find that underneath all varieties there is a ground for steady truth. Men differ but men also agree; they differ as to what is fleeting; they agree as to what is eternal. Difference is the region of opinion; agreement is the region of truth; let us endeavour to penetrate that region."
It was the aged arguer of Athens who first sensed a universal law of morals, but all thinkers have found it out; each man conquering truth for himself, following, as Socrates did, the inscription at Delphos: "Know Thyself." Plato proved God to exist by the very feeling of affinity to His nature which stirs within our souls. Guizot, Tyler, Frazer, in their studies of primitive culture found that whether in the darkest wilds of Africa, the peasant fields of Europe, or the rushing cities of America, wherever the hearts of men beat in every age and clime: God is. Man feels the spirit of divinity within him and seeks to give outward manifestation to that inner spirit as his capacities permit. His means are determined by his birth and his environment. He may begin by worshipping the sun which warms him and sees him on his way, or as the years pass and he develops a greater knowledge, he may worship Him who made the sun, worshipping God in some temple of gilt and gold, which reflects the glory of that sun and which has been erected as the earthly conception of the glory of Him on high. Well may the proudest Christian gentleman paraphrase the words of John Bunyan, point to the primitive native in his childlike worship, and say: "There but by the grace of God, goes he who bears my name."
The great outstanding fundamental fact of life is that all men, deny as they will with their lips, know in their higher moods that there is a God; not something that can be defined for them, but something that is, the ineffable, the inexpressionable fact of life, symbolized by the Lost Word of Masonry. Only "the fool hath said in his heart there is no God." "God," said Fichte, "must be believed in, not inferred." And St. Thomas a Kempis said: "It is better to love God than to define him." Far easier it would be to explain by what rules of music the deaf Beethoven drew from the song of his soul his divine harmonies, or what rules of oratory went to make up the Gettysburg speech, or what geometrical genius conceived the lowly spider's web.
Yet man the Reasoner crushes aside the spirit and, in his egotism, proclaims himself dictator by intellect alone, and wages war on those who will not agree with him. How unconsciously fitting was the action of those French revolutionists who placed a naked courtesan on an altar and hailed her as the Goddess of Reason!
This to me is me very genius of Masonry: A love of God, simple, pure and undefiled, and a deep and unfeigned friendship for our fellow man with an understanding of his frailties, perhaps sometimes what we may call his narrowness and his devout inability to understand some things in the same spirit that we do — the pure essence of toleration: a recognition of the spirit groping within and not the clumsy reasoning without.
Yet it is a deplorable fact and one not avoidable in any discussion of the subject of Masonic toleration that the greatest message of Christ, "Love thine enemy," has been so misunderstood as to cause quarrels and bitter misunderstandings among Christian peoples. Christianity has been split into three general factions: the Greek church, the Roman Catholic church, and the so-called Protestant churches. Of the Greek church there need be nothing said as it is not the cause of the bitterness that has existed for centuries between the two remaining factions — those who adhere to the Papal authority and those who revolted from its domination at the time of the Reformation.
From the time of Uranus, the first Aryan God — and no doubt ages before — man had sought God in strange and devious ways; hideous were some of his efforts to give expression by outward manifestation to the spirit within him and needless it is here to trace this seeking, down to the cradle of Christianity, borne on the cries of Isaiah, ere the Jehovah of the tent became the God of the altar. Suffice it is to touch upon the darkness that was upon the earth before the Son of Man poured forth His flood of light by His divine axiom: "Ye have heard that it was said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour and hate thine enemy: but I say unto you, Love your enemies and pray for them that persecute you that ye may be sons of your Father in heaven." His words to mankind still mean for us the beginning of time. How long have the years rolled on, and how blood-stained is the calendar!
Rome was ascendant. She ruled the earth and the people bowed down and worshipped the Caesars. As country after country was crushed and the people conquered they adopted the worship of the Romans or gave careless lip service to their own. Isis, Osiris and Horus competed with the gods of the Greeks, now fallen from Olympus, in the temples of Rome — and above all stood the Caesar, god of all; the empire shone externally but it was rotten at the core. There came the cleansing words of Christ; "the blood of the martyrs" became "the seed of the Church."
There was no other civilization but that of Rome and when the Christian faith was brought from the catacombs to its triumph it knew no other form of adaptability than the Roman law; drawing its religious element from Judea, its philosophy from the Greeks, it took its constitutional organization from the Romans. Ranke, the great German Protestant scholar, in his History of the Popes tells eloquently of how Christ gave to the world its moral awakening:
"How obscure and unpretentious was His life!" he exclaims, "His occupation was to heal the sick and to discourse of God in parables with a few fishermen, who did not always understand His words. He knew not where to lay His head. Yet, even from the worldly point of view, whence we consider it, we may safely assert that nothing more guileless or more impressive, more exalted or more holy, has ever been seen on earth than were His life, His whole conversion, and His death. In every word there breathes the pure life of God. They are words, as St. Peter expressed it, of eternal life. The records of humanity present nothing that can be compared however remotely with the life of Jesus.
"If the earlier forms of belief had ever contained an element of true religion, this was now entirely obscured; they no longer, as we have said, could pretend to the slightest significance. In Him who united the nature of man with that of God, there shone forth, in contrast with those shadows, the universal and eternal relation of God to the world, and of man to God."
"The church was at first governed according to Republican forms but these disappeared as the new belief rose to pre-eminence and the clergy gradually assumed a position entirely distinct from that of the laity. . . .
"It was imperative on the ecclesiastical body to form their constitution on the model of that of the empire." . . . With the Caesars turned Christian, "Theodosius, the Great, commands that all nations claiming the protection of his grace should receive the faith as propounded by St. Peter to the Romans."
Such was the beginning of the Christian church. When the Lombards, with other barbarians, sought to destroy the church, Pepin the younger, of the Franks, went to the rescue. To gain his aid the bishop of Rome gave the sanction of the church to his title of king. Victorious, he tore from the Lombards lands which they had conquered from the Roman empire, territory known as the Exarchate. This should have been returned to emperor, but Pepin answered, to again quote Ranke, "that for no favour of man had he entered the strife, but from veneration of St. Peter alone, and in the hope of obtaining freedom from his sins." The keys of the conquered towns be placed on altar of St. Peter, and "in this act he laid the foundation of whole temporal power of the popes."
Enough of history. Suffice to show that the spirit of times, the demands of emperors and kings made necessary, seemingly so, a Caesarian form of government for the Christian church. Democracy as we know it today was unknown. The republics of Greece and Rome were Republics of the leisure or propertied classes, with slaves to be bought or sold to do the work. Aristotle argues that without slavery there can be philosophy — the slaves must work that the philosophers may think. Plato's Republic provided slaves to do the work. Democracy came with the awakening of the world following Reformation and the development of the printing press. The church of Rome was the matrix for the faith of the Christian people, built 'tis true in the spirit of its times, when 'twas said: "If you are in doubt appeal to Caesar; when Caesar speaks matter is closed!"
Nor need we dwell long, for our purpose, on the Reformation and the Thirty Years war over dogma, with both sides hating blind bitterness — hating each other over how each should express his love for God! That the church fell into evil days even Roman Catholic scholar does not deny.
"What," asks the Roman Catholic Encyclopedia, "has the church of today to do with the fact that long vanished generations inflicted, in the name of religion, cruelties with which modern man is disgusted? The children's children cannot held accountable for the misdeeds of their forefathers. Protestants must also take refuge in this principle of justice. However much they endeavour to blink the fact, they have also to regret similar occurrences during the Reformation epoch, when as everybody knows, the Reformers and their successors made free use of the existing penal ordinances and punished with death many inconvenient, and, according to their views, heretical persons. Hundreds of faithful Roman Catholics who fell victims to the Reformation in England are venerated today as the English martyrs. The greater number of executions occurred not under Mary, the Roman Catholic, but under Queen Elizabeth. It is, however, unjust to hold modern Protestantism, in the one instance, and Roman Catholicism in the other, responsible for these atrocities."
I think even the most casual student of history will agree that they were rough and ready and passionate folks in those days, with the civil law and the moral law of the land rising higher than to really enjoy frying martyrs over live coals. Both sides did it with freedom and abandon and as to just which side did the most is childish and endless argument. It would be sensible for the French people today with their love of Joan of Arc to hate the English people because English soldiers burned her alive. No church has ever risen above the spirit of the people that go to make up that church; it cannot rise above the spirit of its times; where there are a backward and an ignorant people you will find a backward and an ignorant church, no matter what the denomination.
Let us go not back into the Dark Ages, digging down into the dust of a dead past to find something on which we can hinge a hate for living men, women and children!
Let us look to the present and the future; and what have we?
To begin with, and to get more directly into the subject Masonic toleration, have the opposition of the Roman Catholic church to Masonry. Of what does that opposition consist? It consists of a series of pronouncements directed to the members of the Roman Catholic church against joining the Masonic Order; worded too harshly to sound pleasantly to Protestant ears, but they are not directed to the ears of Protestants but solely to members of the Roman Catholic church.
It is to be assuredly agreed that no member of any other religion would follow as necessary any ruling given by the papal authorities, that only devout Roman Catholics would adhere to his orders. And it is to be further agreed by all Freemasons that there is a fundamental law of the Order that no man shall be asked to join, but shall, of his own free will and accord, make application. Therefore, what harm is done Freemasonry because a certain leader of a certain denomination decrees that his people should not join? The papal edicts against Freemasonry today mean no more than if he were to issue an edict to the effect that no faithful member of the Roman Catholic church should join the Methodist, Episcopalian, Baptist or Christian Scientist churches. Everybody would readily exclaim: "Why, certainly not!"- and wonder what it was all about.
The fundamental opposition of the church of Rome to Freemasonry is the fear of indifferentism: "the indifferentism which equalizes all religions and gives equal rights to truth and error," as Cardinal Manning expressed it. Because of the very process of its organization and beginning, as briefly touched upon above, the Roman Catholic Church feels that it has the one true religion. Masonry cannot adhere to any such belief. As our own beloved Dr. Newton says in his eloquent book, "The Builders": "Of no one religion, Masonry finds great truths in all religions. Indeed it holds that truth which is common to all elevating and benign religions, and is the basis of each; that faith which underlies all sects and over-arches all creeds like the sky above and the river bed below the flow of mortal years. It does not undertake to explain or dogmatically to settle those questions or solve those dark mysteries which out-top human knowledge. Beyond the facts of Faith it does not go. With the subtleties of speculation concerning those truths and the unworldly envies growing out of them, it has not to do. There divisions begin, and Masonry was not made to divide men, but to unite them, leaving each man free to think his own thoughts and fashion his own system of ultimate truth."
Now, here we have clearly expressed the two points of opposition between Freemasonry and Roman Catholicism. Pope Leo XIII said of Freemasonry: "By opening their gates to persons of every creed they promote the great modern error of religious indifference and of the parity of all worships, the best way to annihilate every religion, especially the Roman Catholic, which being the one true one, cannot be joined with others without enormous injustice."
Assuredly this should not occasion quarrel. It is a striking fact of our civilization that no matter how low a man may be or how poor his ancestry, common opinion gives that man the right to display vigorous resentment of any aspersions cast on the character of his mother. Almost all of us are born to our religions as we are born to our mothers. We gain our faith as we gain life from a mother's breast; and we should hold it as hallowed and sacred as we do the love of her who bore us — not something to be brawled about and to be hating each other over.
It is regrettable that some should hold that view of Freemasonry, that it leads to indifferentism, not unlike Kipling's: "the more you 'ave known of the others, the less you will settle to one." Freemasons know better. We devoutly believe that our Order holds men close to their individual religious opinions; but the Roman Catholic church leaders feel otherwise and in their judgment those of their faith should not join. As religion is a matter of faith and not of mundane reasoning, as it is something that transcends reason, therefore he who is born of Roman Catholic parentage adheres to the faith of his fathers, and it would be grossly unmasonic to question him in that faith and in his adherence to the edicts of his pope whom he holds to be infallible on all matters of faith and morals. While it may strike strangely on Protestant ears, the doctrines of the Protestant sects, we may rest assured, strike as strangely on his.
"Creeds" says H. Fielding, "are the grammar of religion, they are to religion what grammar is to speech. Words are the expression of our wants; grammar is the theory formed after-wards. Speech never proceeded from grammar but the reverse. As speech progresses and changes from unknown causes, grammar must follow."
William James, the greatest of American philosophers (and certainly no supporter of the Roman faith), expresses thought more in detail, in his masterly volume, "Varieties of Religious Experiences."
"Men need formulas just as much as they need fellowship in worship," writes James. "It enriches our bare piety to carry these exalted and mysterious verbal additions just as it enriches a church to have an organ and old brasses, marbles and frescoes and stained windows. Epithets lend an atmosphere an overtones to our devotion. They are like a hymn of praise an service of glory, and may sound the more sublime for being incomprehensible. . . . Although some persons aim most at intellectual purity and simplification, for others richness is the supreme imaginative requirement. When one's mind is strongly of this type, an individual religion will hardly serve the purpose. The inner need is rather of something institutional and complex, majestic in the hierarchic interrelatedness of its parts with authority descending from stage to stage, and at every stage objects for adjectives of mystery and splendour, derived the last resort from the Godhead who is the fountain and culmination of the system. One feels then as if in the presence of some vast encrusted work of jewelry or architecture; one hears the multitudinous liturgical appeal; one gets the honorific vibration coming from every quarter. Compared with such noble complexity, in which ascending and descending movements seem in no way to jar upon stability, in which no single item, however humble, is insignificant, because so many august institutions hold it in its place, how flat does Evangelical Protestantism appear, how bare the atmosphere of those isolated religious lives whose boast is that 'man in the bush with God may meet.' What a pulverization and levelling of what a gloriously piled-up structure! To an imagination used to the perspective of dignity and glory, the naked gospel seems to offer an almshouse for a palace.
"It is much like the patriotic sentiment of those brought up in ancient empires. How many emotions must be frustrated in their object, when one gives up the titles of dignity, the crimson lights and blare of brass, the gold embroidery, the plumed troops, the fear and trembling, and puts up with a president in a black silk coat who shakes hands with you, and comes, it may be, from a 'home' upon a veldt or prairie with one sitting room and a Bible on its center table. It pauperizes the monarchial imagination!
"The strength of these aesthetic sentiments makes it rigorously impossible, it seems to me, that Protestantism, however superior in spiritual profundity it may be to Roman Catholicism, should at the present day succeed in making many converts from the more venerable ecclesiasticism. The latter offers so much richer pasturage and shade to the fancy, has so many cells with so many different kinds of honey, is so indulgent in its multiform appeals to human nature, that Protestantism will always show to Roman Catholic eyes the almshouse physiognomy. The bitter negativity of it to the Roman Catholic mind is incomprehensible. To intellectual Roman Catholics many of the antiquated beliefs and practices to which the Roman Catholic church gives countenance are, if taken literally, as childish as they are to Protestants. But they are childish in the pleasing sense of 'childlike' — innocent and amiable and worthy to be smiled on in consideration of the undeveloped condition of the dear people's intellects. To the Protestant on the contrary they are childlike in the sense of being idiotic falsehoods. He must stamp out their delicate and lovable redundancy, leaving the Roman Catholic to shudder at his literalness. He appears to the latter as morose as if he were some hard-eyed, numb, monotonous kind of reptile. The two will never understand each other — their centers of emotional energy are too different. Rigorous truth and human nature's intricacies are always in need of a mutual interpreter. . . . How can any possible judge or critic help being biased in favour of the religion by which his own needs are best met? He aspires to impartiality; but he is too close to the struggle not to be to some degree a participant, and he is sure to approve most warmly those fruits of piety in others which taste most good and prove most nourishing to him."
In other words, that we may grasp it more readily, let us take the Roman Catholic ritual as a symbolism, an eagerness to express the soul within by the outward manifestation of signs and allegories: that is all it is to the devout Roman Catholic. Down, each in his own heart, the devout Roman Catholic and the devout Protestant Freemason, simple and unafraid in his faith, differs in no way, other than in symbolism — and church symbolism is the clothes of religion. Why quarrel about the clothes? Assuredly the narrow and the ill-bred on each side will, but that is something to be regretted and not to be emulated.
The Romanist has his symbols and we of Freemasonry have ours; yet each teaches the fundamental philosophy that these forms shall pass, that the spirit alone keeps step with the march of eternity. The soul of Hiram springs from his grave and cries out, "My name is Acacia!" and down through the endless ages, there comes the voice of Divinity, saying, "I am the Resurrection and the Life." In form we are far apart: "for now we see through a glass darkly": but in spirit, if we but have faith and charity, we are as one. "Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal."
"But," someone interrupts, "the Roman Catholic church still adheres to its age-old contention of temporal power and now seeks by its 'invisible empire' to again control the world. It is this that members of the Protestant faiths fear."
Let us examine the menace to see how solid is the ground on which our fears are based; for hatred is born of fear and hate is chiefly what is wrong with our world today. Let us consider statistics for a moment to judge properly the size of the threat which is made against the fruits of the Reformation.
In fact, let us get away from ourselves and our little sphere of life and get to the top of some high mountain and there take in the world as a whole. Our statistics are taken from the World Almanac.
There are, according to the latest estimates, 1,702,520,366 people in the world today.
Of this total, 576,000,000 are of the Christian faith.
Of the Christian faith there are 288,000,000 Romanists and 167,000,000 Protestants. The Greek church has 121,000,000.
One billion and several hundred million are not Christian.
In the United States there are 105,683,000 people. Of these there are but 15,721,815 who are Catholic.
Now, the problem resolves itself down to this: how will a relative handful of 288,000,000 Roman Catholics, scattered over the face of the earth, seize the reins of the world from a billion, seven hundred million people? How will 15,721,815 men, women and children of any denomination control America?
In the fifteenth century, the total population of Europe was estimated at 50 millions. Today it is 464 millions. In the centuries when the pope had temporal power and swayed kingdoms and peoples even as did the Caesars, the human race lived in a static world. Men seldom moved from the towns in which they were born; only a few hardy adventurers blazed the way around the world. Men lived and died without ever knowing what went on perhaps in the next town to them. Kings and lords and churchmen ruled the world and the people were dumb, inert as the beasts in the field: "Theirs not to reason why, theirs but to do and die." Even down into our own day and age the world stood almost still. Seventy-five years ago it took three weary months for a message to go across the Atlantic; today it takes three seconds. The ships of John Paul Jones could travel no faster nor were they better manned than were the ships of the Phoenicians; the soldiers of Napoleon could travel no faster than could the soldiers of Hannibal; the messengers of George Washington could carry tidings no faster than could the messengers of Julius Caesar.
All that is changed.
Today we live in a little world, a globe made small by the inventive genius of mankind. The earth is covered by a fine gauze of electrically charged copper wires that tell the story of all the world every twenty-four hours. A century ago a newspaper was a rarity and its news was months old. It was weeks before the press of England heard of the battle Waterloo a few miles away. Today the census shows there more than one and a half billion copies of newspapers publish yearly in the United States alone. We live in a new and a thinking world; if any denomination or sect or order or faith ever again denominates the civilized globe it will be by the triumph the spirit of truth alone and not by external domination. But let us get back again to statistics.
The two largest Roman Catholic nations of the world today are France and Italy. France has a population of 41,500,000 people. No religious census has been taken since 1872 but best non-Roman Catholic authorities estimate that 75 per cent are members of the Roman church. Let us look then into its political being and see how much the church of Rome has had do with the government of that country. For the past quarter of a century its premiers and its government have been non-Roman Catholic: Briand, Viviani, Clemenceau, Millerand now Briand again-all are outside the papal church.
In Italy we find an even more interesting case. It was great political genius, Cavour, who broke the last link of pope's hold an temporal power. The story can be found any standard history on the uniting of Italy. He gave voice his historic utterance, "a free state and a free church," with Mazzini and Garibaldi he brought the warring states of Italy together into a great nation, took from the pope the lands he had held since the days of Pepin, the younger, and made the pope a self-elected "prisoner of the Vatican." In the very shadow of the Vatican the people of Rome, under a plebiscite conducted in 1870, voted by a ballot of 134,000 to 1,500 to join Italy, the new nation. This is still the condition in the land of the ancient Caesars. And yet, of Italy's population of less than 40,000,000 there are 32,983,664 members of the Roman Catholic church.
What, then, is this fear of the Roman Catholic church seeking domination? The people of its own faith have shown in its two largest countries that they stand for a separate church and a separate state.
Japan is the third largest power in the world today. It has a population of 78,263,000 aggressive and progressive citizens of a non-Christian faith. There are more than a billion others who do not come under the banners of the Christian church. Is it not time the followers of the lowly Nazarene ceased their childish bickering with each other, overlooked each other's pettiness, and sought for the spirit of His teachings and not grounds on which to quarrel over how they disagree about the form?
As long ago as 1643, John Milton exclaimed:
"How many other things might be tolerated in peace left to conscience had we but charity and were it not the chief stronghold of our hyprocrisy to be ever judging one another!"
As my favourite Scotch songster sings so well: "We're a going home the same way"; so are we all going in our chosen route to that undiscovered country from whose bourne no traveller returns. We're all going home — all on our way to Beulah land of John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress. How shall we go? The modern Pilgrim would take an auto; let us least use the symbolism.
The old gentleman in the big car thinks he is driving in majestic Rolls-Royce and looks down upon the rest in compassion not unmixed with annoyance that "these flivvers" should be scooting along his highway. What the Roman gentleman sees as "flivvers" we see as simple, powerfully built and altogether beautiful cars of our own design which we insist on driving ourselves. He cannot understand how some of "our side," being not all together well-mannered and perhaps out of patience at his insistence on his being the only machine, possess the temerity to yell at him and call his car an "ancient circus wagon." Such scolding and unkindness on the highroad of life is unseemly. It is a violation of the law and the spirit of the highway. Let each forgive the other in the order of his peculiarity. The road is very rough and very long and there are many tempting detours. We, all of us, have all we can do to keep on our own way, without seeking to find faults in the other.
Some little while ago there was a convention of Episcopalian bishops in the city of Detroit and as Cardinal Mercier, the heroic figure of Belgium's struggle against the German army, was in the city the Roman prelate was asked to address the convention. There was considerable curiosity among the laymen present as to how he would first address the Protestant bishops. He held out his long thin hands as though in benediction and in a deep, quiet voice opened his remarks by calling to them:
"Brothers in Christ."
He bespoke the true spirit of Toleration; that toleration which is willing to overlook differences in dogma in seeking for the inward spirit.
Let us turn for a moment to that standard authority of the Roman church, the Roman Catholic Encyclopedia. "The man who is tolerant in every emergency is alone lovable and wins the hearts of his fellow man," it says. "Such tolerance is all the more estimable in one whose royal practice of his own faith wards off all suspicion of unbelief or religious indifference, and whose friendly bearing towards the heterodox, emanates from pure neighbourly charity and a strict sense of justice. It is also an indisputable requisite for the maintenance of friendly intercourse and cooperation among a people composed of different religious denominations, and is the root of religious peace in the state. It should therefore be prized and promoted by the civil authorities as a safeguard to public weal, for a warfare of all against all, destructive of the state itself, must again break out, if citizens be allowed to assail one another on account of religious differences. A person who by extensive travel and large experience has become acquainted with the world and men and with the finer forms of life does not easily develop into a heretic hunter, a sadly incongruous figure in the modern world."
We certainly do not like the wording of some of the papal edicts against the Masonic order; they sound rather rough on us, but we must remember they are not directed to us but to the members of that faith to warn them against what the church fears is indifferentism. The ecclesiastical language is medieval and the bark is worse than the bite. "The ancient expression, 'heretical poison'," says the same encyclopedia, "which has passed from canon law into the set phraseology of the papal chancery and quite naturally sounds hard to the Protestant is not intended to express any offensive slur on the heterodox who adhere to their opinions in good faith and in honest conviction."
But, taking all that the most narrow minded man who happens to be in the Roman Catholic church has to say about and against Masonry, should we not pity him in his plight of being so handicapped by the blinkers he wears? Or should we also don blinkers so that we can only look in one direction — and that straight at him — and reduce ourselves to his limited view? Rather, opening our eyes, seeing the whole glorious world and all its future before us, we gain a the perspective on man's narrowness and go on our way, not in blind anger and hate, but in love and compassion.
I once was asked to write an article on the Roman church as the "enemy" of Freemasonry; my answer was, and is, that Freemasonry in this day of quick spreading of intelligence, in a dawning era of the ready exchange of world ideas and ideals, has no enemy except that which it creates for itself: that enemy being a narrowness of outlook, a refusal to look at facts in co-relation to their true values and a hatred born of fears unfounded. Hate is the child of fear and fear is too often found within us when we lack faith in ourselves. We have nothing to fear if we "have faith that right makes might; and in that faith dare to do our duty as we understand it."
The genius of Freemasonry is that it welcomes, in a spirit of brotherly love and affection, men of all creeds to its altars if they but confess a sincere and an abiding faith in God; nor does it ask them more. Do we not then but vitiate our Masonic birthright by hating a man who by accident of birth, let us say, holds to religious views that are different than ours, religious views that will not permit him to kneel at our altars? Nor need we sneer at his church and his dogmatism, which is as sacred to him as is ours, even though he does hold to views that we think harsh toward us; not by returning malediction for malediction can we keep our spiritual faith and our intellectual freedom. If we seek to ennoble the souls of men, we must look well into our own hearts for the purity that is there, rather than into the hearts of other men for that which we think is evil.
The universal Brotherhood of Man must come through the souls of men: the divine spirit of freedom: and not through that blind and ruthless impulse which we in our egotism as mortal beings are pleased to call reason!
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BROTHER MELVIN JOHNSON AGAI HONORED
From the always valued pages of The New England Craftsman we have clipped a news item that will be of especial interest to the members of the National Masonic Research Society. Brother Johnson holds an illustrious position in American Freemasonry, and deservedly so, for he has wrought mightily in its interests, and that with a noble character and a fine mind. His many friends among the readers of THE BUILDER will be glad herewith to pass to him their sincere congratulations.
MELVIN MAYNARD JOHNSON, 33°
This distinguished Massachusetts Mason was elected to Active Membership in the Northern Supreme Council A. & A.S.R., at the Chicago session, September 23, 1920. He has just passed his fiftieth year as we write these lines, being born in Waltham, Mass., May 11, 1871.
He comes of colonial forbears. Captain Edward Johnson landed in America in 1628, settled in Charleston, was surveyor-general of the colony and one of the founders of what is now the city of Woburn. Byron B. Johnson, the father of the new active member was the first Mayor of Waltham.
Melvin M. Johnson graduated from the public school in 1888 and entered Tuft's College, graduating in 1892. He attended Boston University Law School, graduating "Magna cum laude" in 1895. After practicing law with his father until 1902 he formed the firm of Johnson & North which continues in active practice at this time.
Ill. Brother Johnson is a professor of law in the law school of Boston University, and a trustee of Tuft's College. He is a member of the Theta Delta Chi fraternity and was admitted to the Phi Beta Kappa honorary society and is a member of the Phi Delta Phi law school fraternity. He belongs also to the American Bar Association, the Massachusetts Bar Association and the Middlesex Bar Association; in some of these he has held official position.
Masonically, Brother Johnson has labored steadily and faithfully since he reached manhood. Me was raised in Monitor Lodge, Waltham, in 1892, and was Master in 1902-3, District Deputy Grand Master in 1904-5, Grand Marshal in 1906-08, Senior Grand Warden in 1909, and Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts in 1914-15-16. Since 1910 he has been a member of the board of directors of the Grand Lodge and since 1911 a member of the board of Masonic relief. Fifteen Massachusetts lodges and a lodge in Havana, Cuba, count him an honorary member. He is also an honorary member of New Jersey Consistory A. A. S. R.
The National Masonic Research Society, the George Washington Masonic National Memorial Association, the Masonic Service Association of the United States all command his interest as member or officer.
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Boys flying kites haul in their white-winged birds;
You can't do that when you're flying words;
Things that we think may sometimes fall back dead,
But God himself can't kill them when they're said.
— Will Carleton.
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There are two ways of being happy — we may either diminish our wants or increase our means; either will do, — the result is the same.
— Benjamin Franklin.
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MEMORIALS TO GREAT MEN WHO WERE MASONS
Bro. Geo. W. Baird. P.G.M., District of Columbia
ANDREW JOHNSON, the seventeenth President of the United States, was a member of what is now Greeneville Lodge No. 119, of Greeneville, Tennessee.
He was born in Raleigh, North Carolina, in 1808, of poor but respectable parents. His father lost his life in an effort to save a drowning man, and left the boy an orphan when he was but five years of age. He was obliged to help support the family, and at the age of ten he was apprenticed to a tailor. He learned to read during his apprenticeship and, when a journeyman tailor, he became an earnest student. Education was not so easy to get in those days as it is now. When he became a man he married Miss McCardle, whose capacity and whose devotion to him worked wonders in his development. He identified himself with the mechanical classes, which was appreciated by them, and which won for him their political support, which was a factor in his democratic Jacksonian politics.
Johnson was elected to the state senate in 1841. He had been an elector on the Van Ruren ticket before that. In 1843 he was elected to Congress, was re-elected for ten consecutive years and, in 1857, was elected to the Senate. In 1862 he was appointed Military Governor of Tennessee.
He was a busy man, always easily approached, never impatient, but ever independent. He did not resent sneers at his humble origin, but on the contrary, often mentioned it.
He was a Union man in a secession state, maintaining the letter and intent of the Constitution and forever urging that the best interests of the commonwealth were served by adhering to the Constitution, instead of modifying it to suit the clamor of the public. His course in Congress so displeased the people in Memphis that they burned him in effigy. His home was assaulted, his slaves confiscated, his sick wife and the children driven into the streets, and his house turned into a hospital for Confederate soldiers. But this ended on the entry of the Union Army, in 1862.
Johnson was elected Vice-President in 1864, and inaugurated in March, 1865. President Lincoln was assassinated in April, 1865, when Johnson became President. The Civil War had ended. It was known that Mr. Lincoln was a lenient, peace loving man, and it was believed his feelings toward the southern states were of the kindliest. This, we believe, went very far toward softening Mr. Johnson towards the men of Memphis who had burned him in effigy. His subsequent acts were so lenient, so patriotic, and so free from sectionalism that it excited his political opponents, who accused him of disloyalty. But when we consider who were prominent among those opponents, we may suspect a motive. Among them were Thurlow Weed and Thaddeus Stevens who were so prominent in the anti-Masonic propaganda at the time of the Morgan excitement. Not the least of his accusers was Charles Sumner, of Massachusetts, who had been so long a power in the Senate, and who seemed to feel that the southern states had forfeited all rights — an idea repellant to President Johnson.
When we laid the cornerstone for the Masonic Temple in Washington, D. C., at the corner of Ninth and F streets, a procession was formed and marched up F street, the Grand Officers being in carriages. A gentleman drove up in the Presidential carriage, and alighted. It was Andrew Johnson. He took a white apron from his pocket and looked for a place in the line. The Grand Master invited him to a seat in his carriage, but the President replied that his rank was that of a Master, and that he would walk with the Masters.
After Johnson's term of office expired he returned to his Tennessee home, but was soon elected to the Senate, where he took his seat on March 5, 1875, but he fell ill while on a visit to his daughter in Tennessee, where he died in July of the same year.
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WHEN DID THE CRAFT RECEIVE THE LEGEND?
Bro. D. E. W. Williamson, Nevada
INSTEAD of worrying about how many Hirams there may have been at the building of the Temple or wearying the brain with calculations as to the dimensions of the Temple itself, the student of Masonic lore should be shown that, from the point of view of research, the main question is how and when the legend of the Third degree became known to the Craft.
It is wrong to perpetuate the mistaken statement that we have any record of more than one artificer named Hiram, although only recently the Rev. Morris Rosenbaum, past master of a London lodge, Past Grand Chaplain of the Provincial Grand Lodge of Northumberland, and sometime contributor to the Transactions of the Quatuor Coronati Lodge of Research, has been quoted as reiterating the assertion that there were two Hirams, father and son. Bro. Rosenbaum is a distinguished Jewish rabbi in London and therefore is quoted as an authority, but a Freemason may be an orator and an adept in Hebrew language and literature, yet be without standing as a Scriptural interpreter. The simple truth, as the youngest graduate of a theological seminary of today could inform him if so disposed, is that all we know about Hiram is what we find in I Kings, vii. It is true that in II Chronicles, ii and iv, there is more written about him, but it has no historical value, for, as Luther pointed out four centuries ago, the credibility of Chronicles is doubtful. It could not be otherwise, for Chronicles is a book written at least 623 years after the death of Solomon and is merely an amplification, so far as its account of the Temple is concerned, of Kings; and Kings, itself, which was written in 622 or 621 B. C., is itself not first-hand but is based upon the book of the acts of Solomon ("And the rest of the acts of Solomon and all that he did and his wisdom, are they not written in the book of the acts of Solomon?" — I Kings, xi:41). Chronicles, therefore, is a third-hand report and written after the Exile, at that. In the Hebrew canon its weight is so slight that it is placed at the very end of the Bible and no competent Hebrew scholar, Jew or Christian, will presume to challenge a statement in Kings on the authority of anything in Chronicles.
While on the subject of "authority," there is absolutely none in ancient Hebrew or any other tongue for "Huram" as the name of the king of Tyre or of that of the artificer. The Greek version of the Scriptures, of which probably the greater part was translated within thirty or forty years after the completion of Chronicles, transliterates the name "Chiram" (in which the "Ch" should be sounded as in the Scotch word "loch"). The Hebrew text of Chronicles gives the name with "i" (yod), but in the margin of the Hebrew of Chronicles, in what is called a q'ri, the reader is directed to pronounce it as "Huram," notwithstanding. This Masoretic instruction may be given the date of 700 A. D. as the earliest possible, fully sixteen centuries after Hiram's time. In other words, it is as if some Biblical editor sixteen centuries after Christ should direct us to say "Joshua" every time we came across the name of Jesus.
But, without being thought dogmatic, may a student say that it seems to be a waste of time to speculate on the real Hiram and the material Temple, when it is more important to know how they came into the Craft?
First, we shall have to get rid of the idea, so widely entertained fifty years ago when Hughan, Speth, Gould and the new school of Masonic historians were making their first researches, that the Legend of the Third degree was written or imported about 1723. Gould entirely abandoned it himself in the last fifteen years of his life as shown by his "Collected Essays." What is the accepted view of investigators today seems to be well expressed by three eminent Masonic authorities in the discussion on the Royal Arch published in the Ars Quatuor Coronatorum of November, 1916.
"The time immemorial lodges did not begin to come in (under the English Grand Lodge) until after 1723," says Brother J. Littleton, author of "Freemasonry in Bristol." "And there could not have been any great difference in the ritual or they could not have come."
"In Ancient Craft Masonry," says Brother W. Redfern Kelly, "there would appear to have existed from time immemorial a certain essential and well-recognized archaic legend."
And Brother William Watson says: "I have held the opinion for many years as others have done that a legend of the Builder may have been handed down from Master to Master, finally materializing in a dramatic form as a degree."
In Brother Kelley's adjective "archaic," and in Brother Watson's expression "dramatic form," the writer believes lies the key to the inquiry of how the legend found its way into the work. Students of the modern drama's beginnings as seen in the miracle plays and mysteries of the Middle Ages cannot fail to recognize in the legend as we have it today the archaic dramatic form of the display at the old guild pageantries. But what has become of the original play? The writer has searched through all the published plays of the Middle Ages, from the Latin comedies of the nun Hrotswitha of Gandersheim, and the plays of Hilarius, through the York, Chester and Townsley plays, and has found not one that will fit the case, thus repeating the experience of investigators for the Quatuor Coronati Lodge of London. But the period during which the play might have appeared is necessarily limited and it may be that an examination of the records of guild productions from 1535 to 1545 in England will yet reveal the missing drama.
If the tradition existed in England before 1535, the name of the hero was Abdemon, as in Josephus, which may account for the "Aynon." "Agnon," "Dyon," and other forms that have puzzled the readers of the old charges. But, if it became a part of the Craft's work with the name of Hiram Abif, then it could not have been taken up by the Craft before 1535, when Tyndale's translation of the Bible from the original Hebrew first gave that name in English. The Coverdale Bible is also said to have Hiram Abif in it, but the writer has not been able to investigate this. The tradition is not likely to have come in after 1546 for in that year the Coverdale Bible was prohibited from being read by act of Parliament just as Tyndale's had been placed under the ban three years previously. While thus the tradition is restricted to ten years during which we may hope to find its entrance into the Craft, this was a crucial period for Freemasonry on other grounds that make it important to look deeply into the happenings of the time. In 1543, one of the final acts of Henry VIII, whose career was then drawing to a close, was to cause Parliament to pass a law confiscating the property of the guilds. In London they were strong enough to defy him, but elsewhere it was not so and what escaped Henry was taken over by the realm under his son Edward three years later. In 1537 Henry had already confiscated the lands and property of the larger monasteries, patrons of the guilds and the miracle plays at the pageants. Thus the great guilds all over the country were severely hit and it is significant that the last miracle play of England was written by Bishop Bayle of Ossory in 1538. It is of record that at the last York pageant the Masons' Guild was unable to support its own play and it was taken over by the glaziers. The concentration of Masonic research upon this decade of English history ought to repay with something tangible the time and study involved. The writer at present believes that the secret tradition as we have it today was handed down within the monasteries of the Middle Ages and that it passed with the breaking up of these institutions in 1537 into the custody of the secret circles into which the persecuted guilds were forced to resolve themselves. Eventually in 1717 it came from these secret associations into the possession of the first Grand Lodge, but only because the four lodges which formed that Grand Lodge were themselves in full possession of it. That is one hypothesis of the way in which the legend entered the "work" and was carried on. But it is not to be overlooked that the New Learning appeared in Europe in the latter half of the fifteenth century and that Hebrew learning and philosophy, the Talmud and the Kabbala, first became accessible to western scholars. Eramus visited Europe for a few years before 1509 and was professor of Greek at Cambridge. Sir Thomas More, executed by Henry VIII in 1536, was a fount of learning. Even if the theory that the tradition was fostered in the monasteries should fall to the ground, therefore, it is possible that the investigator may make a discovery of as great importance should he find that the legend had been brought down from the misty past within the bosom Kabbalist students.
In the United States we have small opportunity examine ancient manuscripts or to read the origin records of the period spoken of, but our English brothers, who already have done much, may yet find reward for their labours in the study of these particular years. In France the treasuries of the monks of St. Maur scattered, but a mass of material can be found by the French Masonic student. In Germany there must an immense mass of manuscripts and early printed books dealing with the time immediately before Reformation. These ought to produce rich pickings. And there is the great collection at the Vatican. All these possible sources of light may reveal truths with ten years that will set at rest forever the hypotheses and guesses with which in many instances we still have to be satisfied.
* * *
(This poem was written by John Burroughs, who passed on in March, 1921)
Serene I fold my arms and wait;
Nor care for wind, or tide, or sea;
I rave nor more 'gainst time or fate,
For lo! my own shall come to me.
I stay my haste, I make delays,
For what avails this eager pace?
I stand amid eternal ways,
And what is mine shall know my face.
Asleep, awake, by night or day,
The friends I seek are seeking me;
No wind can drive my bark astray,
Nor change the tide of destiny.
What matter if I stand alone?
I wait with joy the coming years;
My heart shall reap where it has sown,
And garner up its fruit of tears.
The waters know their own, and draw
The brook that springs in yonder height;
So flows the good with equal law
Unto the soul of pure delight.
The stars come nightly to the sky;
The tidal wave unto the sea;
Nor time, nor space, nor deep, nor high
Can keep my own away from me.
* * *
IN GOD'S HANDS
Bro. H. L. Haywood, Iowa
My spirit lies within Thy hands:
About my heart Thy fingers close
As clasping petals of the rose
Shut round the dew that in them stands:
My being lieth low and still
Within the shadow of Thy palm:
Within that shadow where the calm
Of peace first stole along my will:
There ever let me live and lie
In that secure and silent tent
Of quiet love's own banishment
While worlds and ages wander by:
There ever let me lie and feel
Thy clasp, O God, about me steal.
* * *
THE STUDY CLUB
The following paper is one of a series of articles on "Philosophical Masonry," or "The Teachings of Masonry," by Brother Haywood, to be used for reading and discussion in lodges and study clubs — From the questions following each section of the paper the study club leader should select such as he may desire to use in bringing out particular points for discussion. To go into a lengthy discussion on each individual question presented might possibly consume more time than the lodge or study club may be able to devote to the study club meeting.
In conducting the study club meetings the leader should endeavor to hold the discussions closely to the tenet of the paper and not permit the members to speak too long at one time or to stray onto another subject. Whenever it becomes evident that the discussion is turning from the original subject the leader should request the members to make notes of the particular points or phases of the matter they may wish to discuss or inquire into and bring them up after the last section of the paper is disposed of.
The meetings should be closed with a "Question Box" period, when such questions as may have come up during the meeting and laid over until this time should be entered into and discussed. Should any questions arise that cannot be answered by the study club leader or some other brother present, these questions may be submitted to us and we will endeavor to answer them for you in time for your next meeting.
Supplemental references on the subjects treated in this paper will be found at the end of the article.
THE TEACHINGS OF MASONRY
Bro. H.L. Haywood, Iowa
PART XI — MASONRY AND INDUSTRY
OUR MODERN industrial system dates back to 1789 in which year James Watt successfully, demonstrated the feasibility of the power machine for industrial purposes. Prior to that time almost all work, as the name "manufacture" (which means "make by hand") itself indicates, was carried on by hand. Tools were simple and inexpensive, and there was little necessity for great factory buildings and no possibility of manufacturing cities such as are now so familiar to us. The worker was closer to his work, and felt more interest in it, and had more at stake in it, and often he himself purchased the raw materials in which he worked, and owned the tools whereby he transformed raw products into articles of commerce.
The introduction of the steam engine, and other power machines, changed all that. The machine was too expensive for the workman to own; it had to be housed in special buildings (factories) designed for it; using such large quantities of stuff and turning out such immense quantities of finished products it was necessary to devise the railroad in order to tend it. The dependence of one kind of manufacturing upon another led manufacturers to herd together at convenient centres and thus the industrial city came into existence. Things could be made that were never made before, and a hitherto undreamed of quantity of new wealth came into existence. Under this regime workmen could no longer own their own tools but became employees, selling their labour in the market as a commodity. The machinery of production passed into the hands of wealthy men, and as a consequence we have the present divisions of society so familiar to us all: the group owning and controlling the raw materials of production and the machinery of manufacture and distribution; the group made up of industrial labourers; and the large class of small merchants and professional men who cater to the needs of these two groups.
It would be easy for any economist (the writer makes no claim to any such dignity) to quarrel with this picture, but the picture may stand for all that as a not inaccurate description of the way things are, and of how they came so to be. At any rate, it will serve to introduce us to the points worthy of discussion in the present study.
How, would you describe the industrial system that existed before 1789? Who was James Watt? What great invention did he make? How has the power changed the whole face of the earth, and brought about a complete reconstruction of human society? Name the ten basic industries. What is meant by an "industrial system"? How did our large cities arise? What is the importance of transportation systems in modern life? What is meant by "economist"? Have you ever fashioned for yourself a theory of Freemasonry's attitude toward industrial problems?
Inasmuch as this great industrial system produces such an immense quantity of wealth we very naturally find a great deal of rather earnest rivalry among the various industrial groups who, each one, strive to capture as large a share of it as possible. Accordingly, we find capitalists, proprietors, merchants, etc., forming corporations, associations, and so forth, as a means of securing their stake in the system; and at the same time labouring men form unions, farmers have their granges, and professional and mercantile groups build up all manner of systems, and all this in nearly every case in order to secure or to protect a certain interest in the values being produced daily by the industrial system.
This conflict of groups due to their often conflicting group interests has come to be familiarly known to us in these days as "the class struggle." Oftentimes men talk of the class struggle as if it were a new invention, something only recently come into existence, but as a matter of fact, as Professor Franklin H. Giddings has been pointing out in a recent series of lectures, the class struggle is as old as war, and has played in all history quite as conspicuous a part as it does now though it was never quite so much to the front in discussion as it is now.
The various ways of describing and explaining and interpreting this class struggle, and the forces that have brought it about and of the manner in which its problems may be solved, have caused men to fall into a variety of different groups of thought or theory. The Anarchist believes that the industrial system is all as it now exists because it has so powerfully strengthened the hands of government, and therefore multiplied the opportunities of political tyranny, a thing he dreads more than he dreads the plague. The Communist, such as is now found so frequently in Russia, would like to see the ownership of the raw materials, the machinery of production, and of the systems of distributions vested in the hands of the masses of the common people, without distinction of intellectual ability, wealth, or any such thing. The Socialist would like to see the industrial system owned and managed by the people at large in such wise that workers would produce only for use and not for profit, and each worker would receive just what he produces, no more and no less. The Guild Socialist would welcome a return of the old guilds whereby a given industry would be managed jointly by all the members engaged in it, with more emphasis on the social and artistic side of labour, and less emphasis on the money side of it. The Syndicalist, of whom our own I.W.W.'s may be taken as a type, would like to see all the members of each of the great industries own that industry in such wise that all the industries could be associated together in a general system, which general industrial system would fulfil all the functions now filled by our political governments. The Capitalist, or the man who takes the position which may be thus described, believes that the present system is the only fair and possible method of making the goods needed by the world. The Christian Socialist believes that if the teachings of Christianity were consistently applied to the industrial system it would result in a Socialist state, but that the ordinary Socialistic methods of arriving at such an end are quite wrong; in other words, it trusts in moral suasion rather than in industrial war or the class struggle.
From another point of view all these groups fall into only two groups, which may be described as Revolutionary or Reformist. In the latter case a man believes that the industrial system as it now exists is sane and sound but that there are details and conditions in it here and there that badly need changing, and he is in favour of making these reforms but refuses to touch the system as a whole. On the other hand the revolutionary is now concerned in mere local abuses or failures in the system: he is convinced that the system as a whole is wrong, and he works to uproot the system entirely in order utterly to destroy it so as to replace it by something entirely different. Revolutionaries again could be divided into classes, were there any need in the present instance, because some of them desire one kind of a system and some another, and some believe that the change could be made in one manner while others believe that it can only be made in other ways.
To illustrate... If a man believes that coal miners do not receive adequate wages he may work to increase their pay and would accordingly be classed as a reformer. If he believed that it is utterly wrong for coal mines to be owned and managed by individuals and for coal miners to be wage workers selling their labour as a commodity, and if he strives to bring about a regime wherein coal mines will be owned in some social way, he is a revolutionary. If he resorts to guns in order to bring this change about he is in favour of violence: if he thinks he can bring it about by peaceable means he will not believe in violence but will be a revolutionary nevertheless. In that instance the Communist would say, Let us all, without distinction, own and run the coal mines together. The Syndicalist would say, Let the coal miners own and run the mines for their own sakes. The Political Socialist would say, Let the people own the mines, and let them through some kind of popularly controlled government own and manage these mines, and let coal be produced as we need it, and nobody make a profit out of it.
One might name a score of other groups, such as the Single Taxers, the Land Nationalists, the Cooperationists, etc., but there is no need to multiply instances, especially since this is not an essay in economics but in Masonry. Masonry as such does not take sides with any of these groups. Its members may be doubtless found among them all, for in Europe there are many Masons who may belong to some one of the various Socialist or other radical groups, and in this country there are trade unionists, capitalists, etc., etc., everywhere in our lodges. But that makes no difference to these men as Masons, because as Masons they thrust these differences aside: also, as it is laid down in Masonic law, politics and kindred subjects are not discussed in lodge. Therefore it is perfectly plain that Masonry has nothing to do with these conflicting industrial and political groups as such. But — and here is the whole point of the present study — the Fraternity nevertheless has very much at stake in the present industrial conflicts, for industry occupies so large a place in the foreground of individual and social life, and exercises so potent an influence over everything we are or do, that the fortunes of a great national fraternity like ours are very much bound up with the fortunes and issues of the industrial system.
Can you give an example of the class struggle drawn from ancient history? From medieval history? What is meant by "class struggle"? Give evidences of its existence drawn from your own observations. Has Anarchy ever had control of a people? Name a few of the more famous Anarchists. What is the difference between Communism and Socialism? What can you tell about Karl Marx and his theories? Did you ever read "The Communist Manifesto" by Marx and Engels? What did Marx teach in his "Capital"? Are there any guilds now in existence? What would the Syndicalists do with our own government if they could get hold of it? Can you name any prominent Syndicalists? Do the Capitalists have organizations similar to trade unions? If so, what are they, and what do you think of them? What should be the attitude of Freemasonry toward trade unionism? What can you tell about Christian Socialism? Can you describe and define the Cooperative movement, not mentioned in the paper? Do you believe we need a new industrial system? Or do you think the present system is sound? What is meant by Land Nationalization? How would that affect an industrial system? Would you admit an Anarchist to membership in the Fraternity? Do you know any Masons who are Socialists? Just what, according to your own views, does Freemasonry have at stake in the present industrial system? What is the attitude of French Masonry toward the industrial crisis? Of English Masonry?
Freemasonry strives to make all men brethren, living amicably and happily together; if an industrial system is such as to divide men into quarrelling factions, sometimes making actual war on each other, it is manifest that the aims of the Fraternity are defeated by the evils in the industrial system. Freemasonry looks toward universal peace said international cooperation: if industrial methods and interests, as exemplified in tariffs and large foreign investments, drive nations apart and into some form of war, then Freemasonry, is thwarted. Freemasonry strives for equality but if an industrial regime is of such a nature as to divide society into castes and cliques, the members of which look with jealousy and suspicion upon each other, then it is clear that Freemasonry must suffer defeat. Whatever makes impossible the realization of the ideals of the Craft is in reality the enemy of Masonry, and will be opposed by genuine and living Masonry just insofar: whatever makes it possible for Masonic ideals to be realized, will be supported and strengthened by Masonry. The shortest path perhaps to a very clear comprehension of this whole position may be to express in one simple sentence the gist of the whole matter:
In any discussion of the philosophy of industry, Freemasonry, if it remain true to its own philosophy, must take the position that industry exists for the sake of man, and must be so managed as to make for the welfare of man. What man is, and what man needs, and what will make it possible for man to live a normal and happy life, that is the criterion by which an industrial system is to be judged.
If we men and women are to remain alive, and if we are to live lives of reasonable happiness, then certain things are necessary to us, such as food, clothing, fuel, houses, education, amusement, and all that. Industry is the method which we have devised whereby these wants and needs may be satisfied. If at any point, or in any moment, the industrial system is failing to satisfy these needs then that industrial system is a failure and must be reorganized. I have to work in order to live but if no work is to be had, something is radically and dangerously wrong. I need clothing, but if, whatever be my efforts, I cannot get clothing, I am forced to rebel against the way things are. I have to find food in order to remain alive, but if there is no food to be had, it is manifest that there is a breakdown somewhere. To say that an industrial system is a thing that has come about through some mechanical process of mature, like the fall of rain, and that therefore we must passively endure its evils as well as enjoy its goods, is a very foolish way of thinking, because an industrial system is a very human thing, a thing we have brought into existence, a thing over which we always have, if we will but exercise it, a great deal of control. This, however, is not to imply that the present system is wrong; far from it; the point I make is that the one possible criterion whereby to test a system is the question, How successfully does it minister to human needs? The question as to the success or shortcomings of the system now at work is quite irrelevant in the present connection, and must be left to the economists and the industrial experts.
What effect does the present industrial system have on brotherhood, international relations, peace, equality? What does an industrial system exist to do? Is our present system fulfilling the functions which we have a right to ask of it? Are you able, through honest effort, to secure sufficient work, food, clothing, fuel, etc.? What effects do the possession of great private fortunes have upon a nation? What is meant by industrial democracy?
In connection with the above it must also be noted that one should not make impossible demands of an industrial system, as is too often the fashion of zealous but inexperienced reformers. There are many things in nature that cannot be changed, and we must adjust our industrial systems to those things. I may not like to mine coal in the damp galleries underground, but that is where coal is to be found, so I must make the best of it. I may not enjoy living in the far north where the winters are so long and cold, but if I am to have pine lumber that is where I must go to get it. The sea is too often a damp and cheerless place in which to live, but if I need fish I must go to sea to get them. Many of the conditions under which we have to work may be uncomfortable and even dangerous, but such conditions must not be charged up against the industrial system if these things cannot be changed. Also, it should be remembered that there is no magic in industry: if a given quantity of goods are to be produced, then a certain amount of work is required to produce it, and that means that man will be compelled to work so many hours, so that it may sometimes happen that a work day will have to be long. And there is a limit to the possibilities of tools, instruments, and inventions, so that often it will necessarily be a hard and dangerous thing to do certain kinds of work, no matter how much improvement there may be by way of inventive genius. This is only another way of saying that while we insist that a given industrial system must satisfy the needs of human beings in a satisfactory manner we must take care not to frame that requirement in such wise as to make it impossible of realization: the fixed conditions of nature must be taken into consideration, the limitations of devices and tools, and the limitations in human power and human wisdom.
Give examples of impossible demands made on our industrial system by reformers. How do you judge of the worth and desirability of any proffered reform? By what standards do you judge industrial practices? How can you prove, for example, whether or not the eight-hour day should be put everywhere into practice?
Freemasonry is wedded to high ideals, and insistent on lofty demands, but even so it is unwise on the of Masons to suppose that therefore it has any right to expect any sudden millennium. It does have a right, however, to ask that this world be made and kept a human world in which men can live together as brothers: and it should insist that the manner in which we make and distribute the goods of life should be of such a character as will make possible the realization of those fine and human goals toward which makes its way. For Masonry is itself a living organism and cannot live in a hostile environment.
In American Freemasonry we cannot discuss such things in our lodges, and it is probable that Masons will very seldomly as Masons care to discuss such matters outside of lodges. Be that as it may, if we are going to take our task seriously, and if we are sincerely in earnest to make right relations and brotherhood prevail we should all as individuals think out our industrial problems from the point of view of the Craft's own purposes and ideals. Nothing presses more closely upon us in these days, nothing is more fraught with the potentialities of great change and nothing will do more to reshape the world in which Freemasonry, like every other institution, must abide, than our industrial system and the burning problems which now beat about it. The Craft must find its own way through all this, and adjust itself to it, and do its own right part in it: how that can be, and when, and where, and to what results, all that is the problem of the Masonic philosophy of industry, a thing not yet born, but which must be born sooner or later.
What has Masonry a light to demand of an industrial system? Is Masonry actually making such demands? If so, how? How can such questions as these be studied by Masons as Masons? Should Masonic magazines discuss industrial problems? How is it possible to work out a Masonic Philosophy of Industry?
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Mackey's Encyclopedia (Revised Edition):
Bee Hive, p. 101; Brother, p. 120; Brotherhood, p. 120; Brotherly Love, p. 121; Charges of 1722, p. 143; Charges, Old, p. 143; Comacine Masters, p. 161; Craft, p. 184; Craftsman, p. 184; Freemason, p. 282; Freemasons of the Church, p. 284; Freemasonry, Early British, p. 283; Labour, p. 419; Laborare est orare (Work is worship), p. 419; Labourers, Statutes of, p. 419; Records, Old, p. 612; Travelling Masons, p. 792; Trestle Board, p. 797; Wages of a Master Mason, Symbolic, p. 834; Wages of Operative Masons, p. 834; Wages of the Workmen at the Temple, p. 834; Work, Master of the, p. 857; Working Tools, p. 856; Workmen at the Temple, p. 857.
These and many other similar references in the revised Encyclopedia of Freemasonry deal with the various angles of the main question considered in the present Study Club paper. A careful examination of the information furnished under these heads will give a close intimacy with the attitude of Freemasons now and of old to industry, from the era of the Operative Craft to that of the present day Speculative Institution. What we Freemasons may be has its sure foothold in the past. What we should be rests upon our enlightened understanding of what has gone before and of the heritage committed to our keeping.
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OUR STUDY CLUB PLAN
"The Bulletin Course of Masonic Study," of which the foregoing paper by Brother Haywood is a part, was begun in THE BUILDER early in 1917. Previous to the beginning of the present series on "Philosophical Masonry," or "The Teachings of Masonry," as we have titled it, were published some forty-three papers covering in detail "Ceremonial Masonry" and "Symbolical Masonry" under the following several divisions: "The Work of a Lodge," "The Lodge and the Candidate," "First Steps," "Second Steps," and "Third Steps." A complete set of these papers are obtainable in the bound volumes of THE BUILDER for 1917, 1918, 1919 and 1920, and the monthly numbers for January, February, March and April, 1921.
Following is an outline of the subjects covered by the current series of study club papers by Brother Haywood:
THE TEACHINGS OF MASONRY
General Introduction. — A. Reasons for a course explaining what the "teachings of Masonry" mean. — B. How one can arrive at his own Philosophy of Masonry. — Conclusion. The Philosophy of Masonry is not a study of philosophy in general, but such a study of Masonry as a philosopher gives to any great intellectual problem.
- The Masonic Conception of Human Nature.
- The Idea of Truth in Freemasonry.
- The Masonic Conception of Education.
- Masonic Ethics.
- Masonry and Industry.
- The Brotherhood of Man.
- The Fatherhood of God.
- Endless Life.
- Brotherly Aid.
- Schools of Masonic Philosophy.
This systematic course of Masonic study has been taken up and carried out in monthly and semi-monthly meetings of lodges and study clubs all over the United States and Canada, and in several instances in lodges overseas.
The course of study has for its foundation two sources of Masonic information, THE BUILDER and Mackey's Encyclopedia.
HOW TO ORGANIZE AND CONDUCT STUDY CLUB MEETINGS
Study clubs may be organized separate from the lodge, or as a part of the work of the lodge. In the latter case the lodge should select a committee, preferably of three "live" members who shall have charge of the study club meetings. The study club meetings should be held at least once a month (excepting during July and August, when the study club papers are discontinued in THE BUILDER), either at a special communication of the lodge called for the purpose, or at a regular communication at which no business (except the lodge routine) should be transacted — all possible time to be devoted to study club purposes.
After the lodge has been opened and all routine business disposed of, the Master should turn the lodge over to the chairman of the study club committee. The committee should be fully prepared in advance on the subject to be discussed at the meeting. All members to whom references for supplemental papers have been assigned should be prepared with their material, and should also have a comprehensive grasp of Brother Haywood's paper by a previous reading and study of it.
PROGRAM FOR STUDY CLUB MEETINGS
- Reading of any supplemental papers on the subject for the evening which may have been prepared by brethren assigned such duties by the chairman of the study club committee.
- Reading of the first section of Brother Haywood's paper.
- Discussion of this section, using the questions following this section to bring out points for discussion.
- The subsequent sections of the paper should then be taken up and disposed of in the same manner.
- Question Box. Invite questions on any subject in Masonry, from any and all brethren present. Let the brethren understand that these meetings are for their particular benefit and enlightenment and get them into the habit of asking all the questions they may be able to think of. If at the time these questions are propounded no one can answer them, send them in to us and we will endeavor to supply answers to them in time for your next study club meeting.
The foregoing information should enable study club committees to conduct their meetings without difficulty. However, if we can be of assistance to such committees, or any individual member of lodges and study clubs at any time such brethren are invited to feel free to communicate with us.
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TOLERATION AND FREEMASONRY
SELDOMLY will one encounter a nobler paper than Brother Bingay's essay on Masonic Toleration which appears elsewhere in this issue. It is a high-minded statement of a great and eternal truth with which no true man can disagree, least of all a Mason, to whom Toleration is a principle sacred and binding. Ever since it incorporated into its constitutions the famous paragraph "Concerning God and Religion" the Craft has worked in the world as a champion of the right of every man to think, speak, and worship as his own soul would order, and sad would be the day should Masonry descend to backbiting, harshness, and to the folly of fighting fire with fire.
Toleration is in itself a positive and fruitful principle, for it alone can establish those conditions under which it is possible for mien to think, work, and worship together. The evil genius of intolerance is in its refusal to permit the spirit of man freedom to act and grow, and thus it hampers, thwarts, and deadens all the more generous and creative faculties. Not to abuse those who differ from you, not to set upon them with bludgeons and tortures, but to grant to them the same "liberty of difference" that you ask for yourself is something as practicable as it is beautiful, for only thus can great constructive work be done.
However it is also wise to remember with Socrates that a virtue carried too far becomes a vice. It is possible so to interpret Toleration as to make of it a mere mush of concession in which one creed, one idea, one teaching is as true (or as untrue) as any other, and thus all distinctions are lost, and the mind falls back into a sterile pyrrhonism in which truth is impossible. If THE BUILDER would find any fault at all with Brother Bingay's paper it would be on this score. It appears that he would almost ask men not to oppose what they know to be error, and that, surely, is asking too much. The bigoted, the fanatical, the superstitious, the tyrannical, what do they care about Toleration! they would not be what they are if they cared anything at all for it! consequently, if one ties the hands and gags the mouth of those who seek the light and who try manfully to make sweet reason and the will of God prevail, he is virtually surrendering the case to the Philistines.
No, such a lofty indifferentism cannot be Toleration, and we do not believe that Brother Bingay intends it so to be. If Toleration means anything it cannot mean that, for such a procedure would asphyxiate all science, knowledge, truth, and whatever light there be. What true Toleration is, it would seem, is in the last analysis what true gentlemanliness is: a courteous respect of the personality of others, and a genuine willingness that they should in their own way seek their own truths, and live their own lives, remembering all the while that always and everywhere every man's truths and conduct must be constantly justified before the bar of the common reason of mankind.
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THE MENACE OF BIGNESS
THE BUILDER has more than once joined with its contemporaries in raising a warning against the dizzy gyrations of the degree mill, for there is good reason to fear evil consequences from the flood of initiations that continues to pour over us. In order to envisage the rapid increase now upon the Craft turn to the experience of Illinois, in which great and prosperous commonwealth Freemasonry is growing far more rapidly than the traditional green bay tree. In 1890 there were 42,369 Masons in Illinois. By 1900 this had grown to 57,325, a net gain of only 14,966, or a few more than 1,400 members a year! By 1910 the figure reached 101,692, which was a very considerable army of Masons. But see what happened during the next decade! In 1920, a little over one year ago, Illinois Masonry numbered 203,447! This was a gain of 101,755, or more than 10,000 per year. But note what happened during the one year between 1920 and 1921: the number leaped to 230,588, which means a gain of 27,141. If the reader is good at mathematics he can work out the percentages for himself, though the figures are dizzy enough as they are.
Is such growth as this — it is quite representative — to be considered a good thing or an evil? It would appear — and this, as the diplomats would say, is the whole point of the present "convention" — that it may be either, and that it will become one or the other according to the effectualness of the initiation machinery, and all appertaining thereto. If lodge officials are so enamored of the lure of mere bigness as to open the gates to anything and everything that may chance along in the guise of petitioners, it is most certainly an evil, for the day in which Freemasonry becomes a huge, slovenly, member-chasing society will be the death day of all those qualities that have made it worth the time of genuine men.
But why may we not ask of ourselves that we become equal to the rapidity of this growth? The thing is not impossible. If the facilities are at hand, and if they be used by qualified men, it should be as easy to make good Masons out of one thousand candidates as it would be out of one hundred. Can this be gainsaid? If not, why not focus our attention upon making the organization safe for Masonry? that is, upon holding up the level of institutional efficiency to the demands made upon it. The Craft needs large numbers and great resources, because it has become one of our national institutions. In the days that are before it it will need greater resources still, for the mightiest of all its battles is rapidly preparing.
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A FURTHER REVIEW OF "FREEMASONRY AND THE ANCIENT GODS"
"Freemasonry and the Ancient Gods," by Brother J. S. M. Ward, F.R. Econ. Soc., F.S.S., with an Introduction by The Hon. Sir John A. Cockburn, K.C.M.G., M.D. Published by Simpkin, Marshall, Hamilton, Kent & Co., Ltd., 4 Stationer's Hall Court, London, E.C. 4, England. Demy 8vo, Cloth, 30s. net, or post free anywhere in the world, 31s. 6d. An import duty of one dollar is charged on the book. Copies may be had through the National Masonic Research Society at $7.50, postpaid.
WHEN ON page 88 of the March issue we published a review of this work by Brother Silas H. Shepherd, it was announced that "an examination of the work by the editor will follow shortly." Happily, in now redeeming that promise, it becomes possible to publish along with the editor's review, two other reviews by competent brethren, one of which chances to be strongly "contra," the other strongly "pro." In this wise it turns out that, including the able summary by Brother Shepherd, readers of THE BUILDER will have four independent reports of this interesting volume.
A "Pro" View.
"Freemasonry and the Ancient Gods" is the latest evidence of the swing of the pendulum away from that schools of Masonic writers, like Gould, who are imbued with the spirit of Thomas, and can only be convinced by sticking their hands in the wounds.
It was, perhaps, necessary that the materialistic school, of which Gould was such a striking example, should arise as a protest against the extravagant statements of men like Oliver and Preston, but now there appears to be a reaction, an inevitable turn of the tide.
This new work is by J.S. M. Ward of England and is bound to create a great deal of discussion in Masonic circles as he is the forerunner of what he, himself, terms the "Anthropological School" as against the so-called "Authentic School" of Gould and his circle. "But," as he says, "after all, we must remember that Freemasonry is still and has always been, a secret society. In its very essence, written documents are anathema. To this day our oath proves this and it is only during the last two hundred years that any deviation from this rule has been winked at. Even now there are lodges in England whose ritual varies considerably from that in use in London, and in certain cases the sole repository of it is the preceptor and members of the lodge. Such lodges absolutely forbid their members to write down one word of it. If this were the original policy of Freemasonry, how can we reasonably expect to find documentary evidence for the antiquity of our Order? For all practical purposes no documents, except the Ancient Charges, can be found of a date prior to the foundation of the Grand Lodge in 1717."
Yet he shows the lack of research of such men of the documentary school as Gould and Findel who depended on Thory and Clavel, particularly in the case of the Knight Templar charter of John Mark Larmenius, and showed that they had never seen the original document in cipher which he reproduces in facsimile and demonstrates to be genuine; and he shows the legend of the Baldwin encampment of Knights Templar to be based on fact, which in itself is an important contribution to Masonic history.
Many hold the view that while the Crusades checked the incursion of Eastern races into the Western world, on the other hand they brought about the impregnation of the Western world with the germs of Eastern thought. From thence was derived (in the opinion of Sir Christopher Wren as well as Prof. T. Hayter Lewis, Past Master of Quatuor Coronati lodge,) that style of architecture which we now term "Gothic."
Brother Ward traces the descent of Freemasonry through symbolism and its common use in Egypt, India, among the Mayas of Central America, China, etc., and prints many pictures showing these races using Masonic signs. The Knights of the Temple imbibed from the East the spirit of Gnosticism which was pre-Christian, he says, and this was afterwards called a heresy and it was for this that the Order was suppressed. They appeared to have held an esoteric view of Christianity which would permit the Jews of the Kabbala and those of other religions to join, instead of being strictly confined to Trinitarian Christians as at present.
In 1915, the author saw Mohammedan Pathans in an alley at Colombo, Ceylon, meeting one another for the first time, go through one by one, all the signs of Craft Masonry. He gives many authentic stories of English Masons who in India, China and elsewhere have come in contact with non-Grand Lodge Masonry and have worked their way into the inner sanctuaries of Temples; and of natives who have visited English lodges, all of which must be read to be appreciated.
The book is a distinct advance over the usual materialistic Masonic history and the author is evidently one who has touched and become acquainted with the Great School which has ever contacted Freemasonry. He shows that in Masonry as in the older religions there is an esoteric meaning which must not be given to the multitude. He performs a most difficult task most acceptably, since he is giving an explanation of symbolisms based on symbols whose very names he must not mention. He can not give the secret to any one; for the secret is an experience which must be gone through — the Secret of the Beatific Vision.
It is amusing to see how some froth and fume against the mystic and occult interpretation of the Masonic symbols, for it is evident that "they do not belong." They have not joined that great and really secret organization which has existed throughout the ages and which exists today and whose members recognize each other almost without words. Those who have joined the School know their fellow scholars. They can travel in foreign countries and receive Master's wages, as Pythagoras taught his disciples. The others hear their speech and think it as foolish as the talk of the alchemists was once considered, or as the gibberish of Giberol. Osiris is raised by Horus at the entreaty of Isis, or the Soul is raised by the spirit consciously and wilfully, at the entreaty of Matter. This book marks the beginning of the New Revelation to Masons, or rather those Masons who seek to raise the Veil of Isis, even but a trifle.
Cyrus Field Willard.
A "Contra" View.
Quite the most pretentious publication dubbed Masonic that has appeared in England for some time is "Freemasonry and the Ancient Gods," offered by James S. M. Ward as the fruit of fourteen years of study and research and published in attractive form, with a copious bibliography and index. Patient industry the author certainly reveals in chapter after chapter, yet one cannot but regret that his energy has not been applied to matters of his own knowledge rather than wasted on subjects far better covered by others. A person who is not especially trained to traverse the paths of ancient or modern non-Christian religious beliefs is very likely frequently to stumble. For example, is it not rash to write of points of contact of ancient Egypt and Babylonian worship with the oldest Aryan beliefs without knowing what Sayce, Cheyne, Maspero, Jastrow or Haupt may have to say? And should a man discuss symbolism without, evidently, knowing of Goblet d'Alviella, or speak of Mithraism with but a superficial acquaintance with Cumont?
The title of the book does not describe its contents and a happier choice might have been made because the ancient gods are quite subordinate to the main theme, which, in the first part, is the universality of the signs of Masonry. The author sets out to prove that Masonic signs are used all over the world and are recognized and answered by remote peoples and by the most unexpected savage tribes. The second part is a discussion of the higher degrees; and in the third part he scolds his English brethren for the manner in which he insists they are altering the "work." An American Craftsman who is not familiar with English customs might be able to obtain some very interesting information about the English attitude toward the Templar and Scottish Rites from the second part of the book. In this section, too, Brother Ward gives a condensation of the article on the Knights Templar which appeared in the Ars Quatuor Coronatorum in 1911, written by F. J. W. Crowe, with a summary of the Chapter of Larmenius and some excerpts from Bothwell-Gosse's "The Templars." Perhaps, as there is no original research in Parts Two or Three of this book, Brother Ward would have done better to have omitted them and to have confined his efforts to Part One. It would have made a more compact volume of 178 pages and would have then contained all that Brother Ward really has to say. He opens with a description of an initiation ceremony among Bektashi Dervishes, but he should know that such a description is of no value as evidence unless time and place and the names of the witnesses are given. Nothing else will do. The Masonic world is eagerly awaiting on this point evidence such as would be accepted, not necessarily in a court of law, but to the satisfaction of the average man accustomed to weigh ordinary probabilities. If our ceremonies and ritual, signs and symbols, are in use, as has been stated, among the Druses, Hindu sects, natives of West Africa, American Indians, let us have the sworn testimony if possible, but let us have the testimony, anyhow, in such form that we can judge its credibility. It was hoped that it was just this that Brother Ward had done in this book, but it turns out to be as indefinite and credulous as those that have gone before. He tells us that two British officers worked their way into the inner shrine of a temple of Shiva by giving the signs of the Royal Arch, but clearly this is hearsay on his part and we are without the names of the officers and their statements. And who can help being skeptical when these important features of the testimony are withheld?
Frankly, skepticism is justified. It is no longer possible for anybody to make bald statements and call them proof and this new spirit of investigation in Freemasonry is what has brought us to some real knowledge of the Craft and its history. The Mason demands proof. So one has little patience in following Brother Ward through his statement of Mexican revelations. Aztec and Maya remains do not sustain any pretension to Masonic knowledge on the part of the natives whom Cortez conquered. Let any Mason read the Smithsonian Institute summary of Mexican antiquities, to be obtained in most large public libraries, and it will be obvious that Brother Ward's contention is incapable of belief. Nor can an American Mason be induced to believe that anybody ever saw two Pathans in an Indian alley go through all the Masonic signs, as Brother Ward accepts as true. There are very strong arguments to be made in favor of an Aryan origin for certain Masonic conceptions but such arguments gain no help from puerile phantasies, as Brother Ward, a B.A. of Cambridge, surely must be aware.
"Ah," says Brother Ward, getting down to more argument, "Masonry had its secret signs in the days of Ashmole, long before any scientific study had been made of Egyptian antiquities." As a statement of fact that is precisely true, but nothing is further from the truth than the inference one would draw from it and which Brother Ward evidently believes. The knowledge of the meaning of the Egyptian hieroglyphics was never really absolutely lost, for Horapollon's two volumes of "Hieroglyphica" were certainly in existence in Ashmole's day. Whether Horapollon wrote them or not, they are in very late Greek and some students place them as late as the fifteenth century. Some of the meanings given by Horapollon Dr. Adolf Hermann calls eccentrically (Tollheiten), but there are the lists for anyone to see and the traditional interpretations, for anyone to read. Whether Horapollon of Phaenebythes wrote the two volumes, or whether they were written by Horapollon who lived a century later, between 474 and 491, or whether they were written by somebody else about 1450, the fact remains that the books were in existence and anybody who possessed them could make a fair attempt at translation of the Egyptian hieroglyphs. And they were used by the magic school that debased, or pretendedly so, the Hermetic school of philosophy with which the student of the origins of Masonry finds himself constantly in contact. So Brother Ward, if he were an Egyptologist as well as a Mason, might have traced the pedigree of some of our work more directly to the Egyptian priesthood than he has succeeded in doing.
"Will anyone contend that the sign of F.C. is a natural sign?" asks the author. Certainly, anyone will. It is the most natural sign in the world. He says it is found in India, Egypt and Palestine, as well as elsewhere, and he might have added that it is an old American Indian sign, too, for it is — one of the oldest of the Indian symbols. Its naturalness explains its universal use. And here it is that Brother Ward, somehow, has wholly failed to do what the reader in taking up the book expects to find done. Brother Ward has traveled, he has had his eyes open, he has made notes; but — he has really described nothing. In is not necessary to tell a Mason what a Masonic sign is, so the author could have told what a savage did, or what a tribe did, giving date and place, and then the Masonic reader would have known, just as well as Brother Ward knew, whether or not the matter described had any counterpart in Masonry. As he has failed to do this, he has produced a work of great length containing much curious information but it is really of no value to the student.
D. E. W. Williamson.
A Third View.
Of the many admirable qualities exhibited by "Freemasonry and the Ancient Gods" the thing that has most favorably impressed myself is the fervor, the kindling enthusiasm, with which its author, Brother J. S. M. Ward, deals with Freemasonry. To him it is not an antiquarian puzzle, or a corpse on the dissecting table, but a breathing and living thing — almost a being — to be known, loved, and served. If at times this zeal seems to carry him away, after the manner of enthusiasm since the world began, and he does not always employ as ripe a judgment as a man should in pursuing such a task as he has assumed, one is more than willing to be lenient with one who is always alive, even if he is not always accurate, because enthusiasm covers a multitude of sins.
Brother Ward's sins are not to be counted by the multitude but there are a certain number of them which must be fairly admitted by even the most partisan friends of the book. To a sophisticated reader accustomed to the meticulous carefulness of scholars the many slips of grammar, spelling, and of matters of fact in the volume are very painful. The word "Collegia" is three times (perhaps oftener) used as a singular noun. Our old friend J. Yarker appears repeatedly as "Yarkar," a thing that must irritate his learned ghost. Laurence Dermott makes his advent as "Dermot." In themselves of slight importance these slips convey the impression of haste, and make a reader suspicious about more important matters. At the bottom of page 8 the author says "that in the Middle Ages an apprentice was bound for seven years." In the majority of cases yes, but not always, as in France, where it was quite common to hold an apprentice by an indenture of only five years. On page 145 is this sentence: "When Christianity was converting the rank and file of ancient Rome it did not fail to attract the members of the various colleges, among which were included many of the Masonic fraternity." But there was no "Masonic fraternity" among those Colleges; there was no fraternity of any kind. In the very next paragraph is this bewildering sentence: "Strange to say, Diocletian, when he set out to destroy Christianity, dealt very leniently with the Collegia of Architects," etc. If this means anything at all it means that the Collegia had become part of the Christian institution, or at least, Christian, which is not true to the facts. There never was such a thing as a great unified institution in the empire known as "the Collegia"; all those bodies were independent, deriving their unity of form from the imperial statutes according to which they were governed. As for their symbols, emblems, and ritual little or nothing is known, as one can discover for himself from that which is the principal source of information, the Corpus Latinarum Inscriptionem.
Brother Ward has a habit of making rapid and loose statements about matters that call very loudly for caution and many modifications. The case of the Roman Collegia, just referred to, is an example of this. The case of the Comacini may be offered as another example. The history of the Comacini is as yet so much of a terra incognita that many of the most careful historians of architecture omit the subject altogether, while others refer to them incidentally, and in passing, and usually with the remark that the Comacine theory is as yet in the making. Leader Scott herself, and Brother W. Ravenscroft after her, have both been careful to keep before their readers the tenative character of many of the "proofs" offered by them. In the preface to his now familiar little book, "The Comacines," the latter writes thus:
"Part of what I have written is theoretical and and part historical, and, in order to avoid destroying the value of the latter, I have endeavored to keep the two things quite distinct."
My quarrel with Brother Ward is that he has not "endeavored to keep the two things quite distinct." The apprentices in Masonic lore who chance to read his pages on that theme and may there be many such to read his pages — will carry away the impression that what he has stated is so much matter-of-fact history. This is unfortunate because the Comacine Theory is still just that — a theory, and it should be frankly presented as such, and given that value.
Brother Ward finds it easier than most to cut the Gordian knot. After describing at some length, and in an interesting fashion, "the Hindoo Yogi system" he brings his reader up suddenly with this statement: "For convenience, we may regard the first three degrees as corresponding roughly to our Craft degrees." If Brother Ward can discern such an identity he possesses a pair of X-ray eyes not vouchsafed to myself, and an agility of reason that I very much covet. Of like nature with this is that other example of theological reasoning, the crux of which is stated on page 38: "There is a marked similarity between the three principal officers in a Craft lodge and the three principles of the Deity"! (Quotation marks are my own.) On the following page is a similar sentence: "Therefore, Brother S.W., when your final duty is performed tonight, pause for an instant and recall to your mind that side of the Deity which closes the life of every man, and which some day will close the work of this planet when Time shall be no more." I imagine that if ever an S.W. sees a side of Deity approaching him in order to perform that function he will quite forget that he has ever been an S.W.!
It is easy for one to throw out a theory here, another there, and another further on, until at last, like the spider with her web, a system of theories has been formed. It is easy in the process to forget gradually, as one advances, how he has advanced, so that at last, when the conclusions are reached, the mind has forgotten that it has passed from theory to theory rather than from fact to fact. In this wise it is perilously easy to build up an illusion of proof out of the most tenuous materials. After reading the whole of "Freemasonry and the Ancient Gods," having in mind the while its principal thesis, I came to a stop with the feeling that what I had in my hands was not proof, but only the illusion thereof.
What the book's thesis is may be succinctly stated in the author's own words, as found on page viii of his Preface:
"Briefly, the theory that I venture to propound is that Freemasonry originated in the primitive initiatory rites of prehistoric man, and from these rites have been built up all the ancient mysteries, and thence all the modern religious systems. It is for this reason that men of all religious beliefs can enter Freemasonry; and, further, the reason we admit no women is that these rites were originally the initiatory rites of men; the women had their own. These for sociological reasons perished, while those of the men survived, and developed into the mysteries."
Brother Ward has made a splendid undertaking even if, as some of us may believe, he has failed in accomplishing his purpose. Gradually, and by virtue of a prodigious amount of labor, carried on now for more than half a century, Masons have accumulated a great mass of data belonging to many countries, periods, and peoples. These facts, half-facts, and theories now lie in heaps in our modern books, just as, before the days of the archeologists fragments of buildings lay scattered about the sites of cities anciently passed away without any historian being able to link up these pathetic monuments to the story of the peoples they once served. To a certain type of mind nothing is more uncomfortable than such a situation; such men are eager to throw out great generalizations, like nets, in order to draw all the facts into some kind of dramatic unity, such as has been at last attained in some of the more familiar tracts of secular history, as in the story of Rome or of Greece. They generalize, they build up grandiose systems, in order to save themselves from the feeling of suspense and uncertainty. These generalizers have often gone astray and will continue so to do in the nature of the case, but, after all, they have their own high place and their own exceeding great reward. The present state of affaits with regard to Masonic "history" is one that calls out loudly to such men. Sooner or later there may appear a great generalizer to furnish us with the clue to it all, and thereby bring us out of our uncertainty, but he has not yet appeared.
The most exciting thing about Brother Ward's book is his forthright challenge to what he describes as "the Authentic School." On page vii of his Preface he has this to say about these same Authentists:
"Yet, despite these self-evident facts, the Authentic School, for all practical purposes, concentrates its research on documentary evidence, and naturally is unable to adduce any real evidence for Masonry, previous to Grand Lodge, save as an operative guild. Let the Authentic School still concentrate on documents — there is still enough work to be done to occupy it fully for many years — but let others follow the anthropological line of research, and the sum total of our knowledge will be vastly increased."
Does Brother Ward expect to be taken seriously in this? Where is this Authentic School located? of whom is it composed? how are we to recognize it when we encounter it? Does Brother Ward (such is the interpretation evidently placed on his words by Brother Willard) mean the eminent scholars who have composed the Quatuor Coronati Lodge of Research? If so, and such is my own guess, then this Authentic School can be easily located and its voice heard: it has carefully and voluminously expressed itself in the thirty-odd volumes of the Ars Quatuor Coronatorum.
The Ars is a library with which I have long lived on rather intimate terms, and I have enjoyed in the past, as in the present, some personal intercourse with the men who have contributed to its pages. But not by any stretching of words or imagination can I make Brother Ward's adjective "Authentic" fit this group; nor can I understand how that group may be described as concentrating on "documents."
For one thing, the men of the Quatuor Coronati do not form a "school" in the sense that they have certain theories in common; far from it, as all will know who have found delight in the discussions that almost always have followed each paper contributed. For another thing, they have never united behind any set of formal acts, or any program whatsoever; they have from the first jealously protected the right of every member to go his own way. Having neither acts nor theories in common, these men have had but one bond in common, and that has been loyalty throughout to the commonly accepted canons of scientific thought. Their plea has ever been, Let us investigate Masonry, its nature and its history, as we would investigate the history of Rome, or Greece, or England.
If the term "Authentic School" has any other meaning than this, Brother Ward should out with it! But if the term means this — and I believe that most of us would so interpret it — then a question stands ready to hand: Does Brother Ward ask us to throw aside scientific methods? If he does he is asking the impossible. And as for his "anthropological researches," he will find as much of that in the A.Q.C. as anywhere. The notion that the members of the Lodge Quatuor Coronati have been obsessed by concern for the minutiae of Masonic documents is dispelled by the most hasty reading of their Transactions. Everything has been grist that has come to their mill, and their mill has been operated according to the most careful scientific methods.
For all that I disagree with him in these fundamental matters Brother Ward's book is one that I shall gladly recommend to my friends whenever occasion permits. Like Browning's David he has taken for his province "the whole round of creation." To read the book through from beginning to end is in itself almost a liberal education. A student, and this should especially weigh with the new student, will find here laid before him, in orderly and seemly array, all the larger problems with which our best minds have been wrestling. And he will encounter here, in overflowing measure, a great accumulation of the facts that every Mason should know.
The thing I like best of all in the book as a book is its amplitude, its sweep, its glow, and its recognition of the romance and human appeal of our Fraternity, which is not, and never has been, a static organization carved out of the rock for aged men to lean on. Few are they that have discovered the height, and the depth, and the length, and the breadth of it; nor has it entered into the imagination of many men to know what are its unsearchable riches. Never yet, save in the great scriptures of stone wrought out by our cathedral building brethren of long ago, has it been celebrated by one competent to express that which it has put into the heart and life of the world; not once, save in a few stray pages of Morals and Dogma. But it will not be always so! There will some day come a man endowed by nature with the incomparable gifts of the great poet, and equipped by his own labor with a complete panoply of knowledge, who, out of his balanced powers of learning, speech, and imagination will write The Book of Freemasonry. When that book has been written Masons themselves will then discover how that though Masonry has been with them for a long time, yet have they hardly known it at all!
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Since writing the above a Masonic brother has called my attention to the fact that Brother Ward is already at least twice an author. He is credited with two volumes on spiritualism, the former of them being "Gone West," and the latter "A Subaltern in Spirit Land." These two books, as an examination has shown, are composed of materials alleged to have been "revealed" from the "spirit world" to the author. It appears that Brother Ward is a "trance medium" and also that he practices "automatic writing." I add this codicil to my review because it will enable our readers more quickly to "place" Brother Ward.
"The Subaltern in Spirit Land" is published by William Rider & Sons, 8 Paternoster Row, London, E.C.4, England. The other volume (it is not at hand just now) is, as I recall, from the same publishing house.
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PUBLICATIONS WANTED, FOR SALE, AND EXCHANGE
We are constantly receiving inquiries from members of the Society and others as to where they might obtain books on Masonry and kindred subjects, other than those listed each month on the inside back cover of THE BUILDER. Most of the publications wanted have been out of print for years. Believing that many such books might be in the hands of other members of the Society willing to dispose of them we are setting apart this column each month for the use of our members. Communications from those having old Masonic publications will also be welcomed.
Post office addresses are here given that those interested may communicate direct with each other, no responsibility of any nature to be attached to the Society.
It is requested that all brethren whose wants may be filled through this medium communicate with the Secretary so that the notices may then be discontinued.
By Bro. D. D. Berolzheimer, 1 Madison Ave., New York, N. Y.: "Realities of Masonry," Blake, 1879; "Records of the Hole Craft and Fellowship of Masons," Condor, 1894; "Masonic Bibliography," Carson, 1873; "Origin of Freemasonry," Paine, 1811.
By Bro. G. Alfred Lawrence, 142 West 86th St., New York, N. Y.: Proceedings of the Scottish Rite Body founded by Joseph Cerneau in New York City in 1808, of which De Witt Clinton was the first Grand Commander, and which body became united, in 1867, with the Supreme Council of the Northern Masonic Jurisdiction, A. & A. S. R. Also Proceedings of the Supreme Council Founded in New York by De La Motta, in 1813, by authority of the Southern Supreme Council, of which he was Grand Treasurer-General, these Proceedings from 1813 to 1860.
By Bro. Frank R. Johnson, 310 Dwight Building, Kansas City, Mo.: "The Year Book," published by the Masonic Constellations, containing the History of the Grand Council, R. & S. M., of Missouri.
By Bro. Ernest E. Ford, 305 South Wilson Avenue, Alhambra, California: Ars Quatuor Coronatorum, volumes 3, 6 and 7, with St. John's Cards, also St. John's Cards for volumes 4 and 5; "Masonic Review," early volumes; "Voice of Masonry," early volumes; Transactions Supreme Council Southern Jurisdiction for the years 1882 and 1886; Original Proceedings of The General Grand Eneampment Knights Templar for the years 1826 and 1835.
By Brother N. W. J. Haydon, 664 Pape Ave., Toronto, Ont., Canada: — A set of Gould's History, six volume edition preferred.
By Brother Silas H. Shepherd, Hartland, Wisconsin: "Catalogue of the Masonic Library of Samuel Lawrence"; "Second Edition of Preston's Illustrations of Masonry"; "The Source of Measures," by J. Ralston Skinner 1875, or second edition 1894; "Ars Quatuor Coronatorum," volumes I to XI, inclusive; "Masonic Facts and Fictions," by Henry Sadler; "The Kabbalah Unveiled," by S. L. MacGregor Mathers.
By Brother A. A. Burnand, 690 South Bronson Ave., Los Angeles, California: Various Masonic publications including such as a complete set of "Ars Quatuor Coronatorum"; "History of Freemasonry in Scotland," by D. Murray Lyon, (original edition); Thomas Dunkerly, Laurence Dermott, etc.
By Brother Geo. A. Lanzarotti, Casilla 126, Rancagua, Chile: All kinds of Masonic literature in Spanish. Write first quoting prices.
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If a man empties his purse into his head, no man can take it away from him. An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.
— Benjamin Franklin.
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SIDE DEGREES FIFTY YEARS AGO
In the good old days Masonic editors did not handle their competitors or their opponents with gloves on, but lit into them like bobcats (it was the custom in journalism everywhere), as will be noted. from the following excerpt from the WESTERN FREEMASON of 1859, at which time that journal boasted as its editor no less a giant than T. S. Parvin. Brother Parvin had a tussle with Brother J. R. Hartsock, Grand Master of Iowa, and as usual came off an top. In one of the "replies" that Brother Parvin wrote to Brother Hartsock occurs a paragraph of peculiar interest in that it reveals how at that early day the Order of the Secret Monitor — now so seldomly heard from — and the degrees of the Knight of Constantine were commonplaces of Masonic life; and also how that in 1859 the old bitter warfare over the rival types of Blue Lodge "work" was as yet as its height. We of this day, who have become so familiar with a uniform ritual (within the State), sustained with great care by the Grand Lodge down to the last detail, find it difficult to transport ourselves to a time when there was no such authoritative "work" but in many cases local lodges were permitted to devise the work as they saw fit. In the main, however, a half dozen types came to the front to contend for mastery through a period of years. It may be said that the so-called "Webb Work," as modified and promulgated by Jeremy Cross, gradually forged to the front and won out. The whole subject is worth careful examination by those who erroneously assume that our present "work" in all its details has descended to us from ancient times.
"If Brother Hartsock obtained the true Webb work in 1842 or 1844 from Brother Nye of Vermont, as he says in statement seven, why did he 'lay aside that work and the many innovations connected with it,' and in 1846 secure the services of Stephenson of Virginia, to obtain from him, word for word, another and a different work? Ambition sometimes overleaps itself.
"Brother Hartsock came to my lodge one evening while he was Deputy Grand Master, and I gave him the East, when he commenced repeating that 'Cousin Sally Dillard' story — 'as I was saying, I went down to Virginny,' etc.; and after repeating this a while, he called from labor with the remark, 'All those brethren who have not received the degrees of Knight of Constantine and Secret Monitor will remain and I will confer them.' I at once replied that such doings could not be enacted in the hall of my lodge, and if that was the business his Master sent him to do, he could go to the hotel and use the barroom as a more befitting place. At this he got into a passion, and threatened, but to no purpose. I ordered the tyler to close the hall, and he obeyed, and Brother H. went to the hotel, and in its parlor conferred upon the younger brethren these degrees. Whether they have any connection with the story of 'Cousin Sally Dillard' or not, we have never learned, for we abominate such fungi upon the body of Masonry."
There is much more of equal interest to those who may care to go back to the old files for it. Can anybody tell us what was this famous (or infamous) "Cousin Sally Dillard" story?
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LOOK TO THE EAST
Bro. Gerald Nancarrow, Indiana
If thou wouldst see the Majesty of God
Rise o'er the jewelled portal of the dawn;
If thou wouldst taste the wine of morning's feast,
Awake thy Soul, and look thee to the East.
And wouldst thou have the mantle of the Lord
Spread o'er thy restless longings for a while?
Gone be thy fears, thy tumult ceased —
If thou wilt hold thy gaze upon the East.
When thou hast wrought the labors of thy day,
And night shall fall to compass thee about,
Then morn shall break, thy Spirit be released
The Master's hand shall seat thee in the East.
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THE BUILDER is an open forum for free and fraternal discussion. Each of its contributors writes under his own name, and is responsible for his own opinions. Believing that a unity of spirit is better than a uniformity of opinion, the Research Society, as such, does not champion any one school of Masonic thought as over against another, but offers to all alike a medium for fellowship and instruction, leaving each to stand or fall by its own merits.
The Question Box and Correspondence Column are open to all members of the Society at all times. Questions of any nature on Masonic subjects are earnestly invited from our members, particularly those connected with lodges or study clubs which are following our "Bulletin Course of Masonic Study." When requested, questions will be answered promptly by mail before publication in this department.
OUTLINES AND SUGGESTIONS FOR SIX TALKS ON FREEMASONRY
Please send me outlines for about six talks on Masonic subjects, as follows: 1. Brotherly Love, Relief, and Truth; 2. Freemasonry Unites Men of Every Country, Sect, and Opinion; 3. The Great Lights; 4. Fraternity; 5. Masonry and the Needs of the Present Time; 6. Masonic Working Tools and What they Teach. Will be very much obliged.
Whew! you have given us a rather large order! But here goes! Wherever possible you are being referred to material that has already appeared in THE BUILDER. This is done in order to economize space, which has come to be at a premium.
1. Brotherly Love, Relief, and Truth.
- Brotherly Love. It is something less than private friendship but more than neighborliness; it is that mutual regard that is born from relations in a fraternity. It is the practice of good will towards men because of the mystic tie, and often in cases where otherwise there would be no friendly relations at all. It is the kind of good will that such a society as Freemasonry can create, and is therefore something unique in itself, and not exactly like anything in the profane world.
- Relief. This is not charity in the ordinary sense of the word. It means that when a brother Mason is in any sort of trouble, his brethren should fly to his aid and give him such relief as possible. In accordance with the obligation and with the Five Points of Fellowship it must be secret, tactful, and kindly. It is not given because the man is destitute; it is given because the man is a brother. The fact of his destitution is accidental; the fact of his being a brother is essential.
- Truth. In this connection Truth has not to do with speculative matters, such as questions of creed, philosophy, and all that, but with conduct as between one Mason and another. In this relation there must be candor, honor, and always fair play and accurate loyalty to the facts in the case. The Mason who carries gossip and false tales is not living in truth, but in falsehood. In other connections Masonry emphasizes true thinking; in this connection it emphasizes true doing.
II. Freemasonry Unites Men of Every Country, Sect, and Opinion.
It does as a plain matter of fact. It is found in nearly all countries, and in its vast membership will be found Turks, Hindus, Chinese (Dr. Sun Yat Sen is a Mason) Japanese, etc. Its adherents profess all manner of different creeds: in some Latin countries Roman Catholics belong to it; members of nearly all the Protestant sects will be found on its rosters; so also Mohammedans, Hindus, Buddhists, Confucianists, Bahaists, Free Thinkers (Benjamin Franklin, Thos Jefferson, and others), etc. Inside the Masonic world live men who adhere to all manner of political governments: there are monarchists, as in England; those who believe in representative government, as in this land, etc., and among its members have been leaders in all manner of opposed political camps; as Andrew Jackson, a radical Democrat; and Wm. McKinley, a conservative Republican. All social classes are represented: when Theodore Roosevelt attended lodge in Washington, so he tells us, he sat under a Master who was a gardener. Freemasonry has come from many sources and incorporates within itself that which appeals to all, Jews and Gentiles, Christians and non-Christians, etc. It uses the level as a symbol of itself, not because it planes everything down to a flat monotony, but because it is a platform on which men of all minds — except the man of evil mind — may meet in mutual respect, harmony, and good will.
III. The Great Lights.
- The Holy Bible. See the Correspondence Circle Bulletin section of THE BUILDER for September, 1918. It is a symbol of that which is to us the revealed will and mind of God.
- The Square. See ditto. A call to us to perfect our moral and physical natures.
- The Compasses. See the same. A call to us to perfect our mental, moral, and spiritual selves
IV. Fraternity. In the very nature of things, and owing to fixed conditions under which he lives, man needs brotherhood. On this see the Pike quotation, page 317 of THE BUILDER for last November. Savages have their fraternities and secret societies; this proves that fraternity has its roots in man's very nature and is not something artificially trumped up. Fraternity, like everything else human, needs favorable conditions in which to grow. The Masonic lodge seeks to furnish these conditions. It gathers together (a) like-minded men; (b) it binds them together by solemn obligations; (c) they meet in the same room and always under the same conditions; (d) they see much of each other; (e) they enjoy the same social life and often eat at the same table; (f) they are set to do the same tasks; (g) they live in the light of the same rich traditions; (h) they are all governed according to the same laws. The Fraternity which it thus creates within itself, Freemasonry would like to see established in the great world outside.
V. Masonry and the Needs of the Present Time.
- The world has need of peace as between nations. Freemasonry is an international organization. Its power to influence various peoples is growing rapidly. It should mobilize that influence in behalf of international good will, and a future comity of nations. To illustrate: Ireland cannot always go on rent in twain by north and south, for that condition is intolerable, like a sliver of wood in one's flesh; why cannot the Irish Masonic lodges dedicate themselves to heal this wound?
- The Labor Problem. This is at present the problem. This problem has never been solved. What can our Craft do to help solve it? It is a challenge to us.
- The Problem of Moral Order. It is evident that in this land we are passing through a kind of moral revolution. Many forces are at work that are subversive of all moral order. Freemasonry is a great cohesive influence, and holds men fast to the very highest moral ideals and obligations, as is witnessed by the ritual.
- Masonry and Relief. By "relief" here is meant assistance in great catastrophes such as war, fire, floods, earthquake, and the like. The Masonic Service Association was called into existence to serve as an engine of such relief.
- Immigration. The immigrant it not to be denuded of his own proper personality, and cannot be; but he must be so built into our social and political life that he can function normally in all the activities of citizenship.
- Radical and Revolutionary Movements. Such as Bolshevism, and all that. The Order is not at all opposed to reforms — it works for many of them — but is opposed to anything that would tear the American system up by its roots.
- Problems of Education. You can talk ad lib about this. Materials lie about everywhere. The Towner-Sterling Bill is still a live issue and needs all the ventilating and discussing it can get.
VI. The Masonic Working Tools and What They Teach. Space is exhausted, so Brother Editor informs me. See THE BUILDER for January 1919, page three of the Correspondence Circle Bulletin section for the Working Tools of an Entered Apprentice; for June 1919, page three of the Correspondence Circle Bulletin section for the Working Tools of a Fellow Craft; and for the Trowel see page three of the Correspondence Circle Bulletin of June, 1920.
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Can any reader furnish me with a copy of the poem of three or four verses entitled "I Will," the first lines of which are as follows:
"I will start anew this morning, with a higher, fairer creed.
I will cease to stand repining of my ruthless neighbor's greedy."
and the last lines
"I will cease to preach your duties,
And be more concerned with mine."
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THE NATIONAL LEAGUE OF MASONIC CLUBS
Can you give me some information about an organization known as The National League of Masonic Clubs? I am the secretary of a local Masonic club, and we have been thinking somewhat of seeking to ally ourselves with the League. Who is the secretary?
The secretary of the National League of Masonic Clubs is Brother Edward A. MacKinnon, 507 Broome Street, Wilmington, Delaware. At present more than 375 clubs are affiliated from 31 states and from Toronto, Ontario, and Haiti, West Indies, and the membership represented is about 300,000 Master Masons. The first annual convention was held at Syracuse, New York, April 19th, 1906; the last convened at Atlantic City, New Jersey, May 22nd, 1922. The League has furnished a brief outline sketch of the history and inception of the organization, some paragraphs of which will furnish you all the information you need:
THE CAUSE OR SOURCE
The impulse of an innate feeling in the brethren of the Masonic fraternity to be free to enter any Masonic Club on the basis of associate membership, where one may go and enjoy the same rights and privileges as in his home club, and not be dependent on the courtesy of some member of it.
A brotherhood of clubs which consists exclusively of Master Masons in good and regular standing in lodges under the jurisdiction of regular Grand Lodges.
A high standing for the development of the highest sense and fact of brotherhood among Masons, especially upon the social side of our great profession, with a due restraint upon our affections and passions, which renders the body tame and governable, and frees the mind from the allurements of vice.
In March, 1905, S. R. Clute, Secretary of the Masonic Club of Syracuse, N.Y., with the consent and co-operation of his club, decided to send out a call to the Masonic Clubs then in existence in New York State asking them to send representatives to a meeting in Syracuse to consider the advisability of working out a plan to provide for the interchange of courtesies to visiting members of Masonic Clubs in the State. Pursuant to this call there assembled at Syracuse, N.Y., April 20, 1905, in the rooms of the Masonic Temple Club, representatives from several clubs as follows:
- Brothers E. M. Brown, President, and S. R. Clute, Masonic Temple Club, Syracuse, N. Y.
- Worshipful Brother George W. Arnold, Secretary, Masonic Club, New York, N. Y.
- Worshipful Master Judson Bridenbecker and Brother A. T. Smith of Herkimer Lodge No. 423, Herkimer, N. Y.
- Brother Andrew Ludolph, Secretary, Masonic Club of Auburn, N. Y.
- Right Worshipful, Fred M. Hart, President, and Brother F. D. Clark, Secretary of the Oswego Masonic Club, Oswego, N. Y.
Brother Clute called the meeting to order and stated the object of the meeting, namely: To discuss and agree upon general measures for increasing good fellowship among the various Masonic Clubs of the State and particularly to adopt a traveling card to enable its possessor to secure Masonic Club privileges not only in his own Club, but throughout the State. Brother Clute was chosen temporary President and Brother Clark, temporary Secretary. The following resolutions were adopted:
Resolved, That we, the representatives of the Masonic Clubs of Syracuse, New York City, Rochester, Oswego, Herkimer and Auburn, do hereby constitute an organization to be known as "The League of Masonic Clubs," with headquarters at Syracuse, and that we meet annually on the third Thursday in April, with the Masonic Temple Club of Syracuse.
Resolved, That the purpose of this League shall be the promotion of fraternal relations between the Masonic Clubs comprising it and to facilitate the interchange of courtesies to visiting members.
Resolved, That it is the sense of this organization that the several clubs forming this League may issue, to members in good standing, traveling cards signed by the Secretaries of the Clubs and countersigned by the members to whom they are issued, and entitling said members to the courtesies of the Clubs comprising the League for a period not to exceed six months from the date of issue — the foregoing, however, subject to ratification by the Clubs forming the League.
Brother S. R. Clute was elected President and Brother F. D. Clark. Secretary and Treasurer.
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A COIN MINTED BY GUSTAVUS ADOLPHUS
I have in my possession a silver dollar dated 1617. On one side of the coin (in Swedish) are the words: Gustavus Adolphus, King of the Swedes, Goths, and Vandals. The highest glory to his kingdom. On the other side is the following inscription: Savior of the world, save us. On the face side and just above the King's own picture, is an inscription composed of the four Jewish letters J H W H. Was Gustavus a Mason? If so, was he a 14th degree man, or perhaps a 32nd?
The coin is not a particularly uncommon one, being one of a series coined in Sweden during the years from 1615 to 1632, all of practically the same type. The Hebrew inscription above the head of the king is simply the Tetragrammaton — the letters JHVH in Hebrew characters; and this word, as you are doubtless aware, is the so-called unpronounceable or ineffable name of God, translated "Jehovah" in our bible. Religious emblems are to be found upon a great many issues of coins, not only of Sweden, but of other countries as well, and this applies to all ages, from the old Greeks and Romans down to the "In God We Trust" upon our own coins.
Gustavus Adolphus was certainly not a Mason, in the sense in which we employ the appellation, for there is not the slightest evidence that anything like our Freemasonry was knower in Sweden in those days. Assuredly he could not have been in possession of the 14th or 32nd degrees, for these degrees were not formulated until the second half of the next century after his death.
It is not particularly astonishing that a king, especially one so imbued with religious fervor as Gustavus Adolphus, should have displayed the Tetragrammaton upon his coins. Such antisemitic sentiment as prevailed applied to the Jews of the time, because they rejected the Christian religion. It did not attach to the ancient race or the ancient religion or the ancient language; for it must be remembered that Christ himself was a Jew. And the placing of the Tetragrammaton above the kingly crown was an entirely logical bit of symbolism for the times, indicating that the ruler's power was derived from God.
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Will you tell me if Lorenzo Dow was a Mason, and also a little about his life that is authentic. I used to hear my grandfather talk about him, and I got the impression that he must leave been a crack-brained old fellow, but my grandfather also solid he had been a Mason, so my curiosity was aroused.
Lorenzo was a Mason, and a good one too. He was initiated at Bristol Connecticut, in 1824, and became at last a Knight Templar, which was uncommon in those days. During the disgraceful Anti-Masonic affair (disgraceful to the country, I mean) he stood to his guns, and never failed to tell the antis what he thought of them. Dow was eccentric, in manner, dress, and speech, but I do not believe one should describe him as "crackbrained." Our friends the Jesuits will admit that he knew a thing or two, and how to tell it, for they were constantly being dented by Dow's furious onslaughts. After emerging from a youth full of religious upheavals the young Dow at last found his haven with the Methodists. But in 1805 he went to England where he created much excitement, organized camp meetings, and paved the way for the new sect of Primitive Methodists, which is still, I believe, a vigorous body. I should have said that in 1799 he had gone to Ireland to preach Protestantism to the Roman Catholics. The last years of his life were spent in the United States — he died in 1834 — and for the most part were devoted to a tireless crusade against the Roman Catholics. In 1814 he published a curious autobiography gotten up in the form of a Journal; the 1854 edition of this work was entitled "The Dealings of God, Man, and the Devil as exemplified in the Life, Experience and Travels of Lorenzo Dow." Your grandfather very probably read that book with great delight.
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CHIEF SHABBONEE A MASON
Brother Slane, of Illinois, in THE BUILDER for January, 1922, asks if Blackhawk, Shabbonee, Logan, and other Indian notables were members of the Masonic fraternity. It might be interesting to readers of THE BUILDER to know that in a discussion some few years ago with Brother Charles H. Spencer, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, now deceased, Brother Spencer said he was a personal friend of Shabbonee, and that the latter was a Mason.
F.M. Enders, Iowa.
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CONGRESSMAN LANGLEY, OF KENTUCKY, MEMBER OF A WASHINGTON. D.C., LODGE
Several lists of members of Congress who are Masons have been published recently. These lists have apparently been made up from data furnished by the Grand Secretaries of the respective States. Of course, in most instances, Congressmen are members of lodges in States from which they are elected to Congress. It happens, however, that Hon. John W. Langley, of Kentucky, is a member of Washington Centennial Lodge No. 14, F.A.A.M., of Washington, D.C. He joined this lodge while living in Washington before he became a member of Congress. He is now in good standing on our rolls.
Jason Waterman, Secretary, Washington Centennial
Lodge No. 14; F.A.A.M., Washington, D. C.
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OFFICERS OF THE AMEX MASONIC CLUB, CAMP DE SOUGE, A.P.O. 705, FRANCE
On page 5 of THE BUILDER for January, 1922, is given the name of Brother W. Boas as President of Amex Masonic Club which was located at Camp de Souge, A.P.O. 705, France.
The original President was Captain W. H. Meek (or Mick), and Sergeant John Nesbitt was the original Secretary. Captain Meek hailed from Nebraska Lodge No. 1, of Omaha, Nebraska. The name of Sergeant Nesbitt's lodge was "El Paso Lodge."
William Boaz was subsequently elected President, succeeding Captain Meek.
W. H. Freeman, Ohio.
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GOVERNOR TAYLOR, OF TENNESSEE, A MASON
The present Governor of Tennessee, Alf A. Taylor, is a member of Johnson City Lodge No. 486, F. & A. M. He witnessed the raising of two of his sons several weeks ago.
J. R. Zimmerman, Tennessee.
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BROTHER JOHN Q. TILSON, CONNECTICUT CONGRESSMAN
The list of Masons in Congress, which appears in the December, 1921, issue of THE BUILDER, omits the name of Congressman John Q. Tilson, of Connecticut. Brother Tilson is a member of one of the New Haven lodges, and I have personal knowledge of his being a Mason from having sat in lodge with him. Julius H. McCollum, Connecticut.
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GENERAL HUGH MERCER BORN IN 1720 — A CORRECTION
In Brother G. W. Baird's article on "Great Men Who Were Masons — General Hugh Mercer" which appeared in the February, 1922, issue of THE BUILDER the date of General Mercer's birth, through an error, reads "1870." This should have read "1720."
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CONGRESSMAN RIDDICK, OF MONTANA, A MASON
The name of Congressman Carl W. Riddick, of Montana, should be added to the list of Masons in Congress which appeared in the December, 1921, number of THE BUILDER. Brother Riddick was raised in Lewistown Lodge No. 37, A. F. & A. M., Lewistown, Montana, on December 30th, 1921.
F. P. Hillgren, Montana.
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A MYSTERIOUS RING
I have in my possession a small plain silver ring given me by A.S. Maynard who says it was given him by his father just before his death. This gentleman's father was L.A. Maynard, who for several years was in the wholesale clothing business in Boston, Mass., New York, N.Y., and Chicago, Ill., and from what I can gather from his son, was a very prominent Mason. Upon his death, about 1906, he was buried at Shrewsbury, Mass., his funeral being held in Boston.
The following letter concerning the ring was written by Mrs. L. A. Maynard to her son:
"My Dear Son:
"I am leaving this letter in my diary for you to find after I have gone on. Your father brought the ring back when he returned from his trip abroad in 1858. I don't know how long he had it, but I never saw it before he went across. Your Uncle Daniel told me privately that it was given father in return for healing a sick girl, daughter of Shiek Ben Useph Ali, of Arabia. I asked your father and he laughed and said she only had a touch of fever and that was all I could ever get out of him.
"He always wore it, and in 1884 a tall dark man came home with him and stayed over night; he had most peculiar ways. Your father said he was a native chief of Arabia who was here on some lodge business. I noticed particularly that he nearly worshipped your father. Your father took the ring off his hand and let the dark man hold it and he got down on his knees and prayed over it and said he could have no higher honor bestowed upon him than to have the privilege of holding the ring. I don't see how any ring could be so valuable. Your father said it would bring luck to the wearer, and if you ever give it away give it to a Mason. Your Loving Mother."
A. S. Maynard, who gave me the ring, is not a Mason, but his older brother was, and on one occasion when attending a banquet with his brother in San Francisco given by the Masons, the ring was noticed by one of the officers and he made the statement that there were only five of the rings in this country and he would give anything if he possessed one.
I will appreciate any information any reader of THE BUILDER can give me in reference to this ring and also relative to L.A. Maynard, i.e. what lodge he was a member of and what offices he might have held. C. Ray Clark, South Carolina.
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Alchemy equivalent to Black Art! If that is sound, why then Chemistry must also be Black Art, for the root of both is "Khem," as you state. Murray's Dictionary says there is an old decree of Diocletian against "the old writings of the Egyptians, which treat of the 'chemia' (transmutation) of gold and silver."
"The land of Khem," was exactly synonymous with "the land of Egypt." While originally derived from a word meaning "black," the word "Khem" had lost its original signification, just as the Spanish meaning of the word "Colorado" (colored, and by exclusion, "reddish") is rarely thought of when we use the name of that state. "Colorado" means to English-speaking and -thinking persons a definite geographical division. "Khem" meant to the Greeks a definite geographical division. Murray says that "chemia" was confused with the Greek word of similar sound, "chymeia," (pouring, infusion), and doesn't mean the same thing at all.
"Chemia" meant, I am sure, something like "derived from Egypt," and the Arabic "al-kimia" meant "the Egyptian thing," or more narrowly, "the art of Egypt." In Diocletian's time, as Murray shows, "chemia" had come definitely to mean "transmutation."
But there was never any connection with the Black Art. The latter is so called, not because of any fancied connection with Egypt, but because it is devoted to the cult of the shadow principle of nature — the black god, as some of the Kabbalists called it — the negative of God — the devil. Black, the color of despair, of deprivation of the light, of diabolism, of existence without the circle of the influence of God.
Some necromancers attempted to practice transmutations in the middle ages; but in all the vast literature of alchemy one never hears of one of them succeeding in his efforts. The true Alchemists were most devout, in the best sense of the word. They were never diabolists.
Your inquirer should read first, "Alchemy Ancient and Modern," by H. Stanley Redgrove. This will give him a historical basis upon which to work. Then let him read "The Occult Arts," by J. W. Frings, for a linking up with modern materialistic science. And if he really wants the deep, spiritualized aspect of the whole thing, let him read carefully Mrs. Atwood's "Suggestive Inquiry into the Hermetic Mystery." "Blue" Masonry teems with alchemical jargon. R. J. Lemert, Montana.
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The entire reply to G.L.R. — see THE BUILDER for February, page 63 — was a quotation from "A History of Chemistry," by Dr. James Campbell Brown. Dr. Brown did not intend to identify alchemy with Black Art except in an etymological sense, and then only tentatively. In his treatment of the evolution of alchemy he takes pains to differentiate between the two.
Skeats defines alchemy as the "science of the transmutation of metals." "Alkenamye" and "alconomy" were used during the Middle Ages; Chaucer spells it "alkamistre." The Arabic is "al-kimia," which is the Arabic prefix "al" added to the Greek root "kamaia," which word meant "chemistry," and was a late form of "kumaia," or "mingling." This was derived from the Greek "keein," "to pour"; and "keein" was in turn derived from the original root "ku," "to pour." Alchemy was also generally spelled "alchymy." Our word "chemist" derives therefrom. So far Skeats.
Murray's English Dictionary gives both theories as to the etymological derivation, and leaves the choice to the reader.
- After giving seventeen forms of the word, the dictionary says it is "apparently" derived from the Greek "kemaia," but goes on to say: "The word is explained by most as 'Egyptian Art' and identified with 'kemia,' the Greek form of the native name of Egypt (land of Khem or Ehame, 'black earth,' in contrast to the desert sand.)" "If so, it was afterwards etymologically confused with the like-sounding Greek "kumaia," equivalent to 'infusion, pouring.' Hence the Renaissance spelling 'alchymia,' 'chymistry'."
- On the contrary side the dictionary quotes Mahn to the effect that the word was originally derived from "kumaia," which is "pouring, infusion," and was first applied to pharmaceutical chemistry, which was chiefly concerned with juices or infusions of plants. Afterwards, Alexandrian alchemists developed chemistry in new directions and it was their notoriety that subsequently led men to associate the word with the popular name of Egypt. "From the Alexandrians the art and name were adopted by the Arabs, whence they returned to Europe by way of Spain."
Of the definitions given in The English Dictionary two are here in point:
"The chemistry of the Middle Ages and 16th century; now applied distinctively to the pursuit of the transmutation of baser metals into gold, which (with the search for the alkahest or universal solvent, and the panacea or universal remedy) constituted the chief, practical object of early chemistry." Examples are given of such a use from 1362 down.
"Magic or miraculous power of transmutation or extraction." (Figurative.)
An example of this last use is furnished in Shakespeare's great sonnet, No. 33: "Gilding pale streams with heavenly alchemy."
The excellent work by Stanley Redgrove, referred to in Brother Lemert's letter, is published by William Rider & Sons, 164 Aldersgate Street, London, E.C., under date of 1911. The book contains a very comprehensive and fair description of alchemy:
"Alchemy is generally understood to have been that art whose end was the transmutation of the so-called base metals into gold by means of an ill-defined something called the Philosopher's Stone; but even from a purely physical standpoint, this is a somewhat superficial view. Alchemy was both a philosophy and an experimental science, and the transmutation of the metals was its end only in that this would give the final proof of the alchemist's hypothesis; in other words, Alchemy, considered from the physical standpoint, was the attempt to demonstrate experimentally on the material plane the validity of a certain philosophical view of the Cosmos.... Unfortunately, however, not many alchemists came up to this ideal; and for the majority of them, Alchemy did mean merely the possibility of making gold cheaply and gaining untold wealth." (Page 1.)
"There is not the slightest doubt that chemistry owes its origin to the direct labor of the alchemists themselves." (Page 3.)
It is interesting to note that when Diocletian issued his famous edict (referred to in Brother Lemert's letter) he believed that in burning the manuscripts of the alchemists he was destroying the source of the Egyptian gold supply. On this see "Demonology and Devil-Lore" in two volumes, by Moncure Conway, Vol. II, page 303.