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The Temple of the Lodge

by William D. Rice, Former Master Mason
Now and Ex-Mason For Jesus, and O.F.F.

Freemasonry often answers challenges to its teachings by stating that it is "only symbolical" in nature, attempting to divert attention from further examination of the symbols.

That these are symbols I do not challenge, rather I challenge the notion that they are "merely symbols for each man to interpret as he sees fit". For, in the multiplication of individual interpretations toward a symbol one can find opposite interpretations that nullify one another. Opposite statements, views, and interpretations cannot reasonably and logically be applied to the same symbol without rendering that symbol meaningless. Additionally, Freemasonry presents its symbols in a distinct and unmistakable fashion to its members, but also alludes to hidden meanings, found only in "seeking more light". Remarkably, though, progress in Masonry more often piles on more symbols instead of giving further explanation of these or previous symbols. If the Mason never endeavors to learn the meanings of these symbols, he remains blissfully ignorant of their origins, development, and meanings.

Let us examine some of these symbols, their Masonic presentations, their apparent origins, and how they are viewed in light of Scripture.

From the Tennessee Craftsman or Masonic Textbook, Containing instructions and ceremonies for the use of Lodges of Free and Accepted Masons, as authorized by the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of the State of Tennessee., Twenty-First Edition, May 1984, the Mason learns the following:

Entered Apprentice, Third Section:

"The third section is not less important than the preceding; it explains the nature and principles of our Institution, and teaches the Entered Apprentice to discharge with propriety the duties that devolve upon him as a man and a Mason, which
are in no way incompatible with those of a good citizen.

It also teaches him whatever relates to the supports, covering, furniture, ornaments, lights, and jewels of a Lodge with its situation and dedication."  "A Lodge is an assemblage of Masons, duly congregated, having the Holy Bible, Square and Compasses, and a Charter or Warrant authorizing them to work." (p.18)

I - High Places and Groves

Upon being "Entered as an Apprentice", a Mason is taught "Mountains and other high places were almost always considered holy, and peculiarly appropriate for religious purposes. We have abundant evidence in Scripture that the Jews were accustomed to worship on the tops of the highest hills, as it was believed that sacrifices offered from these elevated places were most acceptable to the Deity. It is not improbable that our brethren, before they had more convenient places of meeting, held their Lodges on hills, or in valley, or in retired groves." (TC, p.20)

High Places and GrovesWhat the significance of the valleys and groves may be is not presented in the TC; that remains a question answered by other Rituals and Monitors. They give as explanation the caves and grottoes of occultic religions.

However the "mountains and other high places" can be addressed by Scripture. That many religions saw these high places as more acceptable to their gods is not argued against, but the deceptive presentation as to the practices of the Jews is argued against. God was angered, and punished Israel several times when they engaged in worship in these high places, and those times of reconciliation of Israel to God were clearly marked with the "tearing down of high places". Masonry truthfully states that Scripture reveals these practices among the Jews, but also very deceptively omits that the Jews were consistently punished for engaging in these idolatrous practices.

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II - The Form of the Lodge

The "form of the Lodge", save minor variations, is agreed upon by Masonry, as is demonstrated in the several Masonic Monitors and Textbooks, as well as my experience within Masonry. From this aspect, we will examine first the form of the Lodge, then progress as a candidate through each degree, and examine the further symbols of Masonry.

The Entered Apprentice Degree of Freemasonry, as practiced in the State of Nevada, circa 1986, tells the new Mason in the "Entered Apprentice Lecture"

"You were caused to meet with several obstructions on your passage around the Lodge, because this and every regular and well governed Lodge is or ought to be a correct representation of the ground floor of King Solomon's Temple, which had guards placed at the south, west and east gates to prevent any from passing or re-passing except such as were duly qualified and had permission from King Solomon; it was therefore necessary that you meet with these several obstacles and at each of those stations be duly examined."(p.14)

"The form of a Lodge is familiar to every Mason; and its dimensions are said, symbolically, to be unlimited; they extend in length, from East to West; in breadth from North to South; in height, from earth to heaven; in depth, from the surface to the center; the are symbolical of the Universe, which is limitless on every side, and is the proper temple of the Deity whom we serve, whose canopy is the heaven, and whose footstool is the earth. The unlimited dimensions of a Lodge may also be said to denote the universality of the Order, which embraces men of every country." (TC, p.20, 21 )


"The Mosaic Pavement is a representation of the ground floor of King Solomon's Temple; the Indented Tessel, of that beautiful tessellated border which surrounded it." (p.24)

"There is no Symbolic Light in the North, because King Solomon's Temple, of which every Lodge is a representation, was situated so far North of the ecliptic that neither the sun nor moon at high meridian could dart one ray into the northern part thereof. The North, therefore, Masonically speaking, is a place of darkness." (p.25)

"A Lodge is said, symbolically, to be situated due East and West, because after Moses had led the children of Israel across the Red Sea he erected by Divine command a Tabernacle, which he placed due East and West to receive the first rays of the rising sun and to commemorate that mighty East wind by which their miraculous deliverance was effected." (p.28)

"Our ancient brethren dedicated their Lodges to King Solomon;" (p.29)

"(This section contains a store of valuable knowledge founded on reason and sacred record, both entertaining and instructive.)" (p.42)

"I now call your attention to the representatives of the two famous brazen pillars that ornamented the porch of King Solomon's Temple. The one on the right was called __ which means establish; the one on the left was called __ which means strength." (p.44)

Moreover, the Mason, at each degree, is taught how to wear the apron as did a like worker, supposedly in the construction of King Solomon's Temple, and the first three Grand Masters are said to have been King Solomon, Hiram, King of Tyre, and Hiram Abiff. That Freemasonry considers its Lodges as representations of The Temple prepared by David and built by Solomon can therefore be confidently stated.

From Freemasonry's statements that the Lodge is a representation of the ground floor of King Solomon's Temple, being situated due "east and west" in commemoration of both The Tabernacle and The temple, we can make examination by Scripture. From 1 Kings 6 and 7, and 2 Chronicles 3, and 4. we find that this orientation is true, however, the Holy of Holies was placed in the west-most part, and the porch to the east-most part of The Temple. This places the Lodge in opposite orientation to The Temple, as the Master of the Lodge sits in the East. The Masons presented with this question answered, basically, "Anyone with any knowledge of Masonry can answer that with little or no thought: it's all metaphor. It's all made up. What is told regarding Solomon's temple is an allegory that in no way seeks to supplant what is told in Scripture or in any other historical writing." (from Jarrod, posting as Happy Zealot at The Lodge Room.com on 12/12/03).

Rebutting this is Masonry's own words "because this and every regular and well governed Lodge is or ought to be a correct representation of the ground floor of King Solomon's Temple" and "The Mosaic Pavement is a representation of the ground floor of King Solomon's Temple; the Indented Tessel, of that beautiful tessellated border which surrounded it."

As demonstrated, symbols do have meanings; some distinct, and some more vague.

This will place the Lodge, by the placement of the Senior Warden and the pillars representing Jachin and Boaz, outside of The Temple, the Altar of Sacrifice where Freemasonry places its altar, and the Worshipful Master east of the Altar of Sacrifice, farthest from The Temple.

This also places the doors of the Lodge in position that one entering the Lodge must be apparently departing from The Temple.

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III - The Three Pillars

"The Masonic Institution is said, symbolically, to be supported by the three great pillars of Wisdom, Strength, and Beauty, because it is necessary that there should be Wisdom to contrive, Strength to support, and Beauty to adorn all great and important undertakings. An institution thus supported is impregnable from without, and its foundations can be shaken only when discord reigns within." (TC, p.22)

This lesson from the Entered Apprentice Degree is strictly symbolic, but we must ask, "What is the source of the symbols?" Progression to the Follow Craft teaches the mason of five orders of architecture, Tuscan, Doric, Ionic, Corinthian, and Composite. He is then instructed, "The ancient and original orders of architecture, revered by Freemasons, are only three: The Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian. They alone show originality of invention and particular character, and essentially differ from each other." and "The Ionic... Wisdom... Worshipful Master, The Doric... Strength... Senior Warden, and The Corinthian ... Beauty... Junior Warden." (TC, p.45&46)

These are not Biblically based or supported, and Freemasonry accepts men of all religions that profess a "Supreme Being", so examination of other religions must be considered. From the "Ancient Mystery Religions" among the lands of the Chaldees, Babylon, and Egypt we find striking similarities of beliefs, but will only address one at this point.

"Ancient Egyptian religion was a complex and beautiful balance of monotheism and polytheism, along with a good dose of pure magic. For the Egyptians there was no such thing as a separation between magic and religion. One ancient writer, Clement of Alexandria, said that "Egypt was the mother of magicians." The power that lay behind all magic was known as heka. The Egyptians believed in one creator deity who was eternal, omnipotent, self-existent, and incomprehensible to the humans. This unknowable divinity was sometimes referred to by the name neter, the suggested meaning of which includes ideas of "god," "divine," "strength," and "renewal." The polytheism of Egypt manifested in the vast number of local and lesser deities. These deities were considered as the various aspects or attributes of the neter, manifesting in forms that could be visualized and comprehended by the human mind. Thus the goddess Isis was the divine femininity and creative force of the neter, while the god Thoth was the neter's intellectual force, the god Horus was the neter's strength, etc."(LlewellynEncyclodia.com [a site on esoterics, majick, and witchcraft])

These same explanations are found in many old occultic works, but all agree upon the representations of Wisdom, Strength, and Beauty from pagan deities. In the one example presented, we find Thoth as Wisdom, Horus as Strength, and Isis as Beauty. Where parallels are abundant in pagan religions, there are none found in The Holy Bible. Plenty of this evidence is found within the several works such as Agrippa's Three Books of Occultic Philosophy, John Dee's Five Books of Mystery and many cryptic allusions within several works of Sir Francis Bacon.

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IV - The Mosaic Pavement, Indented Tessel, and Blazing Star

"The Mosaic Pavement is a representation of the ground floor of King Solomon's Temple; the Indented Tessel, of that beautiful tessellated border which surrounded it.  The Mosaic Pavement is emblematical of human life, checkered with good and evil, and reminds us of the precariousness of our state in earth; today our feet tread in prosperity, tomorrow we totter on the uneven paths of weakness, temptation, and adversity. The Tesselated Border is emblematical of those blessings which we hope to attain by a faithful reliance on Divine Providence, which is hieroglyphically represented by the Blazing Star." (TC, p.24&25)

The Mosaic Pavement, Indented Tessel, and Blazing StarThe Mosaic Pavement, Indented Tessel, and Blazing Star

The Holy Bible gives us no such illustration of the floor of The Temple, nor any examples of the lessons these present. So, where do these come from? Again, pagan religions present the answers. The Mosaic Pavement is from the beliefs in a god of dualism, both of good/bad, light/darkness. Several pagan religions present these ideas of a god of dual nature, and man's arriving at that Tesselated Border is dependent upon a life of works satisfying to that deity.

What then, is the Tesselated Border? From the South Carolina Monitor, Ahimon Rezon: "Latin tessela, means little square stone, and to indent is to cut or notch a margin into inequalities resembling teeth. A Tesselated Border is, therefore, a notched border of variegated colors." Again, we find no such mentions of these things in Scripture, and must resort to pagan religions for the answers. In several eastern religions, occultic books, as well as Gnostic and Mythriastic writings, we find these borders most often inscribed with Geometrical and Zodiacal signs corresponding to the positions of the celestial compass at the solstices and equinoxes.

As to the Blazing Star, such allusions to deity are found only within pagan religions as they relate to the Mosaic Pavement and the Tesselated Border as represented by the single or double pentacles illustrated.

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V - The Symbolic Lights

"A Lodge has three Symbolic Lights; one of these is in the East, one in the West, and one in the South. There is no Symbolic Light in the North, because King Solomon's Temple, of which every Lodge is a representation, was situated so far North of the ecliptic that neither the sun nor the moon at high meridian could dart one ray into the northern part thereof. The North, therefore, Masonically speaking, is a place of darkness." (TC, p.25).

However, the Mason was previously told, "The three __ __ are the sun, moon, and Worshipful Master, and as the sun rules the day, and the moon rules the night, so should the Worshipful Master rule and govern the lodge with equal regularity."(TC, p.10).

The Symbolic LightsHere the symbology seems, at first, to confuse upon itself. The points of "East", "South", and "West", correspond with both the apparent circuits of the sun and moon, as seen from Earth, considering "South" to represent the meridian. But, the Mason is told they represent the sun, moon, and Worshipful Master, yet he is given no specific as to which station, "East", "South", or "West", corresponds to which Symbolic Light. No such representations are found within The Holy Bible, so, again we must seek answers among the pagan religions.

The diagram of the form of the Lodge (TC, p.20) with the Three Pillars (TC, p.21) and their stations sheds some light upon this, but only darkly, as this representation shows a terrestrial globe centered in a rectangle elongated east and west. This places the altar in the Gulf of Mexico, and the pillars and lights at the east and west horizons, and the southern polar region.

Other monitors, as well as Masonic authors, clarify this by representing within the rectangle the Ancient World, predating the acceptance of the world as a sphere.


Further evidences of these are found within the works of Agrippa, Dee, Bacon, among others. In these representations, west is at the Mediterranean Strait of Gibraltar, east toward Asia, south toward Africa and Egypt, and north toward Europe. (This significance will be further addressed toward the pillars supposedly representing Jachin and Boaz.)

From this we find that the three Symbolic Lights do not correspond to the directly to their stations or the Three Pillars, but to the "governors" within pagan worship.
The sun was deemed the source of light, life, and wisdom; male and generative, and ruled the day. The moon was deemed a reflective source of the sun; female and receptive, and ruled the night. The Worshipful Master is therefore deemed, as by the Ancients, the receptacle of both of these powers of the heavens, and rules the Lodge accordingly.

"The idea symbolized by the Lesser Lights is that he should combine these divergent qualities in carrying out the orders of the Supreme Architect... The Sun, from ancient times, has always been a symbol of the masculine quality, .energy and force; the Moon, of the feminine quality, adaptability and tact. To be energetic at the right time and to compromise at the right time is to be a Master. The Master is symbolical of the offspring of the great Active and Passive Principles. He is the mediator, the child of the two great forces. He sets the Craft to work upon their symbolic studies, which is no light responsibility to be assumed by the uninformed. Only chaos and disaster can overtake him who attempts the work he is not qualified to perform. Then, as before, the candidate must follow the course of the sun. The seeker after Light always emerges from the North in the East and passes by way of the South to the West and again into darkness, with full faith and perfect confidence that day will follow night." (INDIANA MONITOR and FREEMASON'S GUIDE, p.135)

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VI - The Point Within a Circle, Surmounted by a Volume of Sacred Law

"OUR ANCIENT BRETHREN DEDICATED their Lodges to King Solomon, because he was our first Most Excellent Grand Master; but modern Masons dedicate theirs to St. John the Baptist, and St. John the Evangelist, who were two eminent patrons of Masonry; and since their time, there is represented, in every regular and well-governed Lodge, a certain point within a circle, embordered by two perpendicular parallel lines, representing St. John the Baptist and St.John the Evangelist; and upon the top rests the Holy Scriptures. The point represents the individual brother; the circle is the boundary line of duty, beyond which he is never to suffer his prejudices or passions to betray him. In going around this circle, he necessarily touches upon these two lines, as well as the Holy Scriptures; and while a Mason keeps himself thus circumscribed within these due bounds, it is impossible that he should materially err." (Kentucky Monitor, p.48, 49).

TC is almost identical, save the opening paragraph: "Our ancient brethren dedicated their Lodges to King Solomon; but since the introduction of Christianity, they are dedicated to the memory of St. John the Baptist and St. John the Evangelist in all Christian countries."(p. 29, 30).

The Point Within a Circle, Surmounted by a Volume of Sacred LawSince Freemasonry can hardly said to be exclusively Christian, such symbology is mere window-dressing for palatability by unlearned Christians in Masonry. Surprisingly, if the Mason will explore the several Monitors, Grand Lodge statements, and recommended books upon Masonry, he will find the same. From the South Carolina Monitor, Ahimon Rezon: we readily learn:

"The point within a circle is an interesting and important symbol in Free Masonry, but it has been so debased in the interpretation of it given in the modern lectures that the sooner that interpretation is forgotten by the Masonic student, the better will it be. The symbol is really a beautiful but somewhat abstruse allusion to the old sun-worship.
[bold and italics mine].

The two parallel lines, which in the modern lectures are said to represent St. John the Baptist and St, John the Evangelist, really allude to particular periods in the sun's annual course. At two particular points in this course the sun is found on the zodiacal signs Cancer and Capricorn, which are distinguished as the summer and winter solstice. When the sun is in these points, he has reached respectively his greatest northern and southern limit. These points, if we suppose the circle to represent the sun's annual course, will be indicated by the point where the parallel lines touch the circle. But the days when the sun reaches these points are the 21st of June and the 22d of December, and this will account for their subsequent application to the two Saints John, whose anniversaries the *Church has placed near those days. [*Catholicism. Note by this author]

So the true interpretation of the point within the circle is the same as that of the Master and Wardens of a Lodge. The reference to the symbolism of the world and the Lodge is preserved in both. The Master and Wardens are symbols of the sun - the Lodge, of the universe or the world; the point also is the symbol of the same sun, and the surrounding circle of the universe, while the two parallel lines really point, not to two saints, but to the two northern and southern limits of the sun's course."(p.99-102)

In the most ancient religions, this point within a circle has always represented the sun, the sun god, and the attainment of perfection toward which the idolatrous pagan sought in its worship. Again, these are borne out in the research of the mentioned occultic works.

Therefore, "The East/Rising Sun/Generation/Summer Solstice/Worshipful Master/Wisdom" are represented by the left parallel line and first pillar. "The South/Meridian Sun/Power/Autumnal Equinox/Junior Warden/Strength" are represented by the Volume of Sacred Law, and the second pillar. "The West/Setting Sun/Death/Winter Solstice/Senior Warden/Beauty" are represented by the right parallel line and the third pillar.

On the face, this would place "The West" in such a place of finality in death, hardly able to be represented by "Beauty". The answer to this apparent dilemma lies within the Master Mason Degree, and the regeneration through The East, by way of passage through Death in The West, and by North, again to The East.

Again, these symbols are found nowhere in The Temple built by Solomon, nor in Scripture, yet Freemasonry maintains that its Lodges are a correct representation of the ground floor of King Solomon's Temple".

Progression into the Fellowcraft Degree is here necessary to discover the truth of Freemasonry's "Temple".

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VII - The Pillars of The Porch

The Pillars of The PorchFreemasonry ascribes these pillars to the ones at the porch of The Temple built by King Solomon, Jachin and Boaz, and goes into some length as to the explanations of the form of these pillars from Scripture. However, Freemasonry alters these pillars by surmounting them with a terrestrial and celestial globe, respectively, adding significance to them in manners never found within Scripture.
Where several Monitors do not mention these symbols in great depth, merely employing them to allude to Freemasonry's universality, other Monitors are more forthcoming with the actual significance. However, even these more revealing Works do not reveal all.

From The Louisiana Monitor (South Carolina's Ahiman Rezon, among others agrees): "Our ancient brethren interpreted these oval-shaped bodies as representing the Terrestrial and Celestial Spheres, indicating life on earth and the life celestial; but this idea is now conveyed in the representations of those ancient Pillars, by the superaddition of two Globes with their accompanying markings.

On the convex surfaces of these Globes are represented the countries, seas, and various parts of the earth; the face of the heavens, the planetary revolutions, and other particulars.

Their principal use, besides serving as maps to distinguish the outward parts of the earth and the situation of the fixed stars, is to illustrate and explain the phenomena arising from the annual revolution of the earth around the sun and the diurnal rotation of the earth on its own axis.

They are the noblest instruments for improving the mind, and giving it the most distinct idea of any problem or proposition, as well as enabling it to solve the same. Contemplating these bodies, we are inspired with due reverence for the Deity and His works, and are induced to encourage the studies of Astronomy, Geography, and Navigation, and the arts dependent upon them, by which society has been so much benefited. They also denote the universality of Masonry, and teach us that a Mason's charity should be equally as extensive."

Further explanation of these symbols are found within the occultic philosophies in the delineation of the separate worlds. These worlds are:

  1. The Exemplary or Original World (prior to Chaos),
  2. The Intellectual World (ruled by Angelic Orders assigned by astrology),
  3. The Celestial World, (ruled by the Planets and Constellations),
  4. The Elemental World (ruled by elements that are under the influence of the planets, stars, and angels),
  5. The Lesser World (wherein the profane Man dwells),
  6. The Infernal World (of false gods, evil spirits, tempters, apostates, and infidels).

These are found within the progressive degrees of the Ancients, Greeks, Romans, Gnostics, and Mithraism, in several different guises. The tables whereby these are found and applied are from Babylonian, Syrian, Egyptian, Oriental, Pythagorean, Greek, Roman, and Qabalahist occultic philosophies.

The Terrestrial and Celestial Globes denote the progression from The Lesser World of the uninitiated profane Man through knowledge of The Elemental and Celestial Worlds toward The Intellectual World.

[On the frontispieces of Sir Francis Bacon's Novum Organum,(The New Device) 1620, and De Augmentis, (Of Increase), [Gilbert Watt's 1640 ed.] are depicted images that correspond to the form of The Lodge as per the Ancient Map of some Monitors. These images all correspond to the Pillars of Hercules, or the Pillars of Atlantis at the Strait of Gibraltar.

The Terrestrial Globe, with the inscription "MUNDUS VISBILIS" (the Visible Universe/World) and Celestial Globe, with the inscription "MUNDUS INTELLECTUALIS" (The Universe/World of Knowledge/Understanding) surmount these pillars, also represented as Egyptian Obelisks, each pillar/obelisk resting upon a foundation of three spheres.)]

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VIII - The Winding Staircase

Freemasonry tells the Fellowcraft Candidate Mason "Passing through this long porch or gallery, we arrive at the foot of a flight of winding stairs consisting of three, five, and seven steps, which it is necessary that you ascend, and which leads to the middle chamber."

From Kings and Chronicles we find no mention of a long porch or gallery as such.

The Kentucky Monitor, however, does address the stairs; The only allusion to it in Scripture is to be found in the sixth chapter of the First Book of Kings, and is in these words: "The door for the middle chamber was in the right side of the house; and they went up with winding stairs into the middle chamber and out of the middle into the third." The Scriptures further address the middle chamber elsewhere, but we will examine that passage at a later point.

To fully understand the significance of the problems presented by Freemasonry's representation of The Temple built by King Solomon, the examination of the significance of 3, 5, and 7 must be properly addressed.

THREE

"The number three is the symbol of mystery: hence the number of degrees in the mystic Lodge is three; it is governed by three stationed officers, the Worshipful Master, Senior and Junior Wardens; it is supported by the three great pillars of WISDOM, STRENGTH, and BEAUTY. Also this number refers to the greatest of all mysteries, the mystery of DEITY. Just as the three degrees of Masonry make but one science, the threefold government and support one Lodge, so the number three aptly points to the worship of
one GOD in the threefold aspect of THE TRINITY."

Also presented are "Brotherly Love, Relief, and Truth".

FIVE

Five is presented as alluding to the Orders of Architecture; Tuscan, Doric, Ionic, Corinthian, and Composite; "These steps also allude to the five human senses, hearing, seeing, feeling, smelling and tasting. Of these, those most revered by Masons are hearing, seeing, and feeling..." (again upon the order of three); "The active powers of the mind are five: perception, memory, imagination, reasoning, and the moral faculty."

SEVEN

"The number seven is the symbol of completeness. It is so used throughout the HOLY BIBLE, that GREATEST LIGHT of Masonry. [This second statement is blatantly false, as Freemasonry employs several "Volumes of Sacred Law" in its Rituals.]

These steps allude to what was anciently called the seven liberal arts and sciences, which are GRAMMAR, RHETORIC, LOGIC, ARITHMATIC, GEOMETRY, MUSIC, and ASTRONOMY. It would be vain here to speak further of these wide reaching branches of learning, a knowledge of which is necessary to complete a liberal education. I pass on to give a few words upon GEOMETRY, the foundation of Masonic science."

Freemasonry itself admits that it "is a system of morality veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols", and "a progressive moral science". In order to remove this veil and reveal the deeper secrets, an examination of The Master Mason Degree will shed much light.

Aside from the portrayal of Hiram Abiff by the Master Mason Candidate, we find the key point of this degree is again three steps, Geometry, and a key lesson is The 47th Problem of Euclid, as presented by Pythagorus.

The Forty-Seventh Problem of Euclid"THE FORTY-SEVENTH PROBLEM OF EUCLID was an invention of our ancient friend and brother, the great Pythagoras, who, in his travels through Asia, Africa, and Europe, was initiated into several orders of priesthood, and raised to the Sublime Degree of a Master Mason. This wise philosopher enriched his mind abundantly in a general knowledge of things, and more especially in Geometry, or Masonry. On this subject he drew out many problems or theorems, and among the most distinguished he erected this, when, in the joy of his heart, he exclaimed, EUREKA, in the Grecian language, signifying, I HAVE FOUND IT; and upon the discovery of which he is said to have sacrificed an hecatomb, or an hundred oxen. It teaches Masons to be general lovers of the Arts and Sciences."

We can now examine the symbology closer, by examining the significance of Pythagoras' works, and how they relate to other arguments presented. To Pythagoras, and to the Ancients from which he learned "The Mysteries", Numbers, Geometry, and their applications did not just reveal the greatness of God, but were the "keys to all things". They saw it as key to unlocking the secrets of God, Man, Nature, and the Universe. It was their religion, and found its roots in pagan sun-worship, and its descendants in Greek and Roman Mythology, Gnosticism, Hermeticism, among others.

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IX - umbers

  1. Significance of Numbers in Occultic Philosophy

One was origin; Unity, or Monad; the indivisible, First Cause, Creative Force. It is a reference to The Un-embodied Intellect, The Point Within a Circle.

Two was Dyad or Duad; the Monad Enlarged, Mother; The Second Cause, and Separation of Light from Darkness. The first increase in which are foundation of matter and all things perceptible, the generation of motion, addition, multiplication, composition, and relation. It was the Second Point: Line, from it, both Radius and Diameter.

Three was Triad; First Number, First Prime (2 was not considered a number, nor a prime); the emanation of matter, and man. It was the Third Point: from it, both the first superficies (surface) triangle, and measure of a solid by length, breadth, and height. It was the number of joining of Light, Spirit, and Logos in the soul, and Father-Mother-Son Unity.

Four was Tetractys; Square or Foursquare; Number of The Elemental. It was the Fourth Point: from it both the superficies Square, and the First Solid --- The Tetrahedron of four equilateral triangles. It was also THE Tetractys of 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 = 10, 10 being Unity + Infinity. The Four Elements; Earth, Fire, Aire, and Water.

Five was Pentad; Duad + Triad, Wedlock; Proportion and Relation. Man within the circle, extremities evenly extended, center at his navel, in balance of Earth, Fire, Aire, Water, and Spirit. It was the center of all numbers to nine of equidistance, the balance. The number of reason.

Six was Hexad; Duad x Triad, Monad + Duad + Triad. By six, all directions from the center of a solid are found.

Seven was Perfection and Completion; Triad + Square, the first perfect number, and the first square combined.

Eight was Octad; Justice; First Cube, Duad x Duad x Duad, Square + Square.

Nine was Nenead, Horizon, as all numbers 1-8 are comprehended by and revolve in it.

Ten was Decad; Unity + Many. The Tetractys Triangle of 1, 2, 3, 4 was seen as the foundation of all the Universe.

[Ref: http://www.llewellyn.com/, Agrippa's Three Books of Occult Philosophy
(Llewellyn's, edited and annotated by Donald Tyson), (viewable @ http://www.esotericarchives.com/, as Joseph H. Peterson HTML edition, Copyright 2000) http://www.math.tamu.edu/~don.allen/history/pythag/pythag.html, http://www.phoenixmasonry.org/47th_problem_of_euclid.htm, http://www.io.com/~janebm/summa.html, http://www.esotericarchives.com/oracle/oraclesj.htm, http://www.wisdomworld.org/additional/ancientlandmarks/PythagScienceOfNumbers.html, and others.

How this is important to our examination of Freemasonry lies within the significance Pythagoras placed upon numbers as religion. The 47th Problem of Euclid is proven and employed by a 3, 4, 5 triangle. Before beginning, we will form a right triangle from Unity, by Pythagoras' numbers.

We form the circle from Unity, the diameter from Duad, and add a point upon the circumference, forming Triad. (Any point on the circumference of a circle will make a right-triangle when this point is connected with lines to the points of the diameter at the circumference.)

Ancients used this method in reverence to the Sun-god, squaring their buildings from "The Point Within A Circle", using the 3, 4, 5 triangle because of its religious symbology.

  1. Application of Numbers

  2. First, a number chart to explain Pythagoras' reverence of other numbers that appear in Freemasonry is required.

    Number

    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

    Square

    1 4 9 16 25 36 49 64 81 100

    Difference of Squares

      3 5 7 9 11 13 15 17 19

    Pythagoras deemed all odd numbers thus sacred, as they advanced the squares by adding them to the previous square. *Additionally, for any Pythagorean triple, the product of the two nonhypotenuse legs (i.e., the two smaller numbers) is always divisible by 12, and the product of all three sides is divisible by 60.

    (*http://mathworld.wolfram.com/PythagoreanTriple.html)
    Applied to astronomy, this leads to Astrology. Horus (5) divides the 60 product of all three sides, resulting in the 12 signs of the Zodiac.

    The first three Primitive Pythagorean Triples are begun with 3, 5, and 7.

    3 4 5 Three steps from Chaos (0) to Triad (3); from Monad (1) to Square (4); from Duad (2) to Pentad [Man] (5)
    5 12 13 Five steps from Chaos (0) to Pentad [Man] (5); from Chaos (0) to Horus' Square (25) {by the squares}.
    7 24 25 Seven steps from Chaos (0) to Perfection (7); from Chaos (0) to Perfection Squared (49) {by the squares}. Also, 49 = 4 + 9 = Duad2 + Triad2.

    Pythagoras derived his triangle from the Egyptians.

    The upright, therefore, may be likened to the male, the base to the female, and the hypotenuse to the child of both, and so Ausar [Osiris] may be regarded as the origin, Auset [Isis] as the recipient, and Heru [Horus] as perfected result. Three is the first perfect odd number: four is a square whose side is the even number two; but five is in some ways like to its father, and in some ways like to its mother, being made up of three and two. And panta [all] is a derivative of pente [five], and they speak of counting as "numbering by fives". Five makes a square of itself. (Plutarch, Moralia, Vol. V )
    http://www.egypt-tehuti.org/articles/sacred-numerology.html
    1. Solving the 47th Problem of Euclid

    In resolving the 3, 4, 5 square by Pythagoras' Theorem we find the squares are 9, 16, and 25. The previous illustration of the 47th Problem of Euclid, as depicted in some Masonic Monitors/Handbooks, however, is not the 3:4:5 proof, but the 1:1:√2 proof. Some Monitors display the correct 3:4:5 proof, as shown here.

    When the squares of the nonhypotenuse sides are added together (9 + 16 = 25), then joined to the squares of the hypotenuse side for proof (25 = 25), we find an oblong square of 50, or 5x10, corresponding to "the form of the Lodge".

                       
                       
                       
                       
                       
    1. One More Type of Number

    One More Type of NumberThe Ancients revered another type of numbers, that we now call Fibonacci Numbers. The progression of 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13... These numbers, when plotted with squares reveal an interesting and wonderful geometry of nature. The spirals of pinecones and nautilus shells, the branch division and foliage distribution of plants, and many more things in nature demonstrate the Golden Spiral that results from a Fibonacci progression.

    This Golden Spiral was revered by the Pythagoreans as well, as there were, in addition to the examples in nature, from Chaos (0), 3 steps to Duad (2), 5 steps to Pentad (5), and seven steps to Monad + Triad (13) [1 + 3].

    The Monad + Triad bears great significance as it combines the First Cause with the First Number of Man in one step beyond 12 (The Zodiac).

    This is the "return to the Light", beyond the stars, into the original Unity with Monad.

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    X - The Zodiac of Masonry

    The first argument presented here by most Masons will be this: "There is no Zodiac represented in Masonic Symbols!" The preceding evidences, and further application of these symbols in the Hiramic Legend, however, easily prove this. As we now understand the preponderance of symbology is from the Ancients, through Egyptian, Pythagorean, Greek, Roman, and Gnostic philosophy (to name but a few), to present that Hiram is but Osiris/Horus is quite easy. Hiram/Osiris-Horus/Ra/Tammuz begins his circuit, and is

    1. Accosted by "three ruffians" and is killed by the third.

    "The sun is slain by the three autumnal signs Libra, Scorpio and Sagittarius which span September/October; October/November; and November/December. When the sun reaches the autumnal equinox, the days and nights are equal. Thereafter the days decrease in length while the nights increase. The sun declines throughout Libra, [Jubela] but emerges without serious injury. The attack of Scorpio [Jubelo] is far more serious. And the attack of Sagittarius [Jubelum] proves fatal, for when the sun leaves the third autumnal sign, on the 23rd of December, he lies dead at the winter solstice - the time of year when days are shortest and night are longest."

    1. Buried in rubbish/rubble

    "After the sun is slain the body is said to be carried on a westerly course because as the sun continues his course in the zodiac, he appears to be carried west by the wintry signs. This seems to be done at night because, the sun then being invisible, his change of position is only discovered by the stars which precede his rise at daybreak. The body of the sun is symbolically buried beneath the 'rubbish' of the dead vegetation of summer-in the midst of which, however, yet blooms the hardy evergreen, emblematic of the vernal equinox, the time when the days will begin to be longer than the nights."

    1. Searched for by the twelve, found, and "raised"

    "According to the Egyptian legend of the death of Osiris, the goddess Isis ransacked the whole four quarters of the earth in search of his body, which she finally discovered by the aid of a certain plant or shrub and caused to be regularly buried with sacred rites and great honor. According to the legend of Hiram Abiff, it was the twelve Fellow Crafts - emblematically the three Eastern, three Western, three Northern, and three Southern signs of the zodiac, who made the search for the body. It was somewhere among the twelve constellations that the lost sun was certainly to be found. On June 21, when the sun arrived at the summer solstice - the longest day of the year, the constellation Leo [the Lion] being but 30 degrees in advance of the sun-appears to lift the sun with his powerful paw up to the summit of the zodiacal arch."

    (Mather Walker, COMPEERS BY NIGHT)

    Osiris, thus killed, was raised after Isis bore (in virginity) his son Horus (the widow's son), and Horus defeated Set. Osiris was thus raised by Horus (Solomon) with Leo (the Lion's Paw). Horus then ascended to Osiris' position of Sun, while Osiris became Judge of The Dead. Hiram, then is both Osiris and Horus, the Master Mason becomes Horus... awaiting the time of the "rejoining into Light". The correct name for the Egyptian "book of the dead" is "The Book of the Coming Forth by Light". (http://www.egypt-tehuti.org/religion.html)

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    XI - Constructing Masonry's Temple

    Not considering, for the moment, the Hiramic Legend of the Master Mason Degree (as that is addressed by other articles), we can construct and examine the Temple of Freemasonry from Masonry's own Rituals, Monitors, Handbooks and Grand Lodge Statements, and the preceding examination of The Symbols.

    LOCATION:

    From this representation of The Temple built by King Solomon of Israel, we find that the Holy of Holies sits in the west-most part of The Temple. Therefore, to "come to the Light" of The Living God, one must "travel west". This "traveling" is done in a direct line from Outer Court, through the Altar of Sacrifice, thence through the Holy Place, ending in the Holy of Holies. This, to the Christian, is done in prayer through Christ, Jesus as the final High Priest.

    From this illustration from Ahimon Rezon, we find that The Temple of the Lodge is oriented exactly opposite of The Temple built by King Solomon. To many, this is a "So, what?" or a "No big deal", but it is not a small matter, as this places Freemasonry's Temple outside of The Temple built by Solomon, as shown in this illustration:

    Not only this; it places The Temple built by Solomon beyond the "West" doors of Freemasonry's Temple; by Freemasonry's symbology, The Temple lies among the profane!

    The second problem of location is found within the illustrations of "the form of the Lodge", which still is farther removed from The Temple. This places The Pillars as The Pillars of Gibraltar or Atlantis, the "long porch or gallery" along the southern Mediterranean, with the "winding stairs" and "middle chamber" in the lands of the Ancients (where this sun-god religion began). "North" is the then "dark and ignorant Europe", the Altar becomes Greece (where these religions culminated) and "East" becomes very approximately Babylon.

    FURNISHINGS:

    The Temple built by Solomon bears no resemblance by its description in Scripture to that Masonic Temple described by Freemasonry. This, along with the problem of orienting Freemasonry's Temple outside of The Temple should cause great alarm to the Christian. This placement and furnishing causes the Candidate/Mason to kneel at the Altar of Sacrifice when taking the oaths/obligations of Freemasonry. Sacrifices always demanded blood, hence the "bloody oath" as a symbolic sacrifice of oneself.

    This Temple does, however bear resemblance to the temples of pagan religions that pay homage to a deity represented by the Sun, Light, and Gnosis.

    PRACTICES:

    Purging the Lodge comes from clearing out "undesirable spirits". Tyling the Lodge keeps out the "profane". The Rite of Divestiture prevents undesirable "elemental influences" from upsetting the astrological balance after purging (This is yet another article). The "deosil" Rite of Circumambulation pays homage to sun-deities, and sets up an "astral vortex" for occult ceremonies. The several practices will be addressed fully in another article, but none of these bear resemblance to practices of The Temple, or Christianity.

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    XII - Closing Arguments and Observations

    Given Masonry's argument to ascribing dual meanings to symbols; one surface and one hidden, I will put forth the following:

    If, per Freemasonry's Work, they are representing The Temple built by Solomon, even allegorically, it presents a Temple located without, and represents another Solomon as well. Scripture reveals this Temple clearly, and sets all of the goings-on not within the House of God, but without. I must now call to attention to the following Scripture.

    Ezekiel 8
    1 And it cometh to pass, in the sixth year, in the sixth [month], in the fifth of the month
    , [This time coincides with the lamenting of the "death of the sun" in the solstice by the Zodiacal signs. This is why the women are "weeping for Tammuz" in later verses.] I am sitting in my house, and elders of Judah are sitting before me, and fall on me there doth a hand of the Lord Jehovah,
    2 and I look, and lo, a likeness as the appearance of fire, from the appearance of His loins and downward -- fire, and from His loins and upward, as the appearance of brightness, as the colour of copper.
    3 And He putteth forth a form of a hand, and taketh me by a lock of my head, and lift me up doth a spirit between the earth and the heavens, and it bringeth me in to Jerusalem in visions of God, unto the opening of the inner gate that is facing the north, where [is] the seat of the figure of jealousy that is making jealous,
    4 and lo, there the honour of the God of Israel, as the appearance that I saw in the valley.
    5 And He saith unto me, `Son of man, lift up, I pray thee, thine eyes the way of the north.' And I lift up mine eyes the way of the north, and lo, on the north of the gate of the altar this figure of jealousy, at the entrance.
    6 And He saith unto me, `Son of man, art thou seeing what they are doing? the great abominations that the house of Israel are doing here, to keep far off from My sanctuary; and again thou dost turn, thou dost see great abominations.'
    [The abomination of the north gate is Freemasonry making it a "place of darkness".]
    7 And He bringeth me in unto an opening of the court, and I look, and lo, a hole in the wall;
    8 and He saith unto me, `Son of man, dig, I pray thee, through the wall;' and I dig through the wall, and lo, an opening.
    9 And He saith to me, `Go in, and see the evil abominations that they are doing here.'
    10 And I go in, and look, and lo, every form of creeping thing, and detestable beast -- and all the Idols of the house of Israel -- graved on the wall, all round about,
    11 and seventy men of the elders of the house of Israel -- and Jaazaniah son of Shaphan standing in their midst -- are standing before them, and each his censer in his hand, and the abundance of the cloud of perfume is going up.
    12 And He saith unto me, `Hast thou seen, son of man, that which elders of the house of Israel are doing in darkness, each in the inner chambers of his imagery, for they are saying, Jehovah is not seeing us, Jehovah hath forsaken the land?'
    [Here they taught the initiates, and worshipped in vain 'strange gods', arriving by way of the "winding staircase" to the "middle chamber".]
    13 And He saith unto me, `Again thou dost turn, thou dost see great abominations that they are doing.'
    14 And He bringeth me in unto the opening of the gate of the house of Jehovah that [is] at the north, and lo, there the women are sitting weeping for Tammuz
    [Tammuz is Osiris/Horus; they wept at the north as sign of "darkness of winter."].
    15 And He saith unto me, `Hast thou seen, son of man? again thou dost turn, thou dost see greater abominations than these.'
    16 And He bringeth me in unto the inner court of the house of Jehovah, and lo, at the opening of the temple of Jehovah, between the porch and the altar, about twenty-five
    [The Square of Horus] men, their backs toward the temple of Jehovah, and their faces eastward, and they are bowing themselves eastward to the sun ["Brethren, look to the East!"].
    17 And He saith unto me, `Hast thou seen, son of man? hath it been a light thing to the house of Judah to do the abomination that they have done here, that they have filled the land with violence, and turn back to provoke Me to anger? and lo, they are putting forth the branch unto their nose!
    [Making gestures and "signs".]
    18 And I also deal in fury, Mine eye doth not pity, nor do I spare, and they have cried in Mine ears -- a loud voice -- and I do not hear them.'

    (Bible Gateway, Young's Literal Translation)

    However, if per other interpretation, the Temple is The World, then again it is not The Temple, and it is not Solomon. This Temple is a culmination of the vilest acts before God... that of worshiping another. It is a Temple of Gnosis. In either case, the Solomon presented is not King Solomon of Israel. He is Thoth, Ra, Osiris, Horus, Tammuz, Apollo, "Light", "Fire", Gnosis, et.al. In names of yet other deities represented by the Sun... Sol-Om-On.

    One last point to address is this from Masonic Ritual:

    "The form of a Lodge is familiar to every Mason; and its dimensions are said, symbolically, to be unlimited; they extend in length, from East to West; in breadth from North to South; in height, from earth to heaven; in depth, from the surface to the center; the are symbolical of the Universe, which is limitless on every side, and is the proper temple of the Deity whom we serve, whose canopy is the heaven, and whose footstool is the earth. The unlimited dimensions of a Lodge may also be said to denote the universality of the Order, which embraces men of every country." (TC, p.20, 21 )
    [Bold added by this author]

    Look at this phrase closely: "whose canopy is the heaven, and whose footstool is the earth." Surely all will agree with "whose footstool is the earth" as this is so mentioned in Scripture. But God has no "canopy [of] the heaven" as He moves beneath nothing. This symbology does, however fit well the several false 'gods' that are represented in solar images "whose canopy is the heaven".

    May God lead you to read and re-read these things presented, and lead you to the True Light of Jesus Christ.

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