The best and most commonly used description of what Freemasonry is, is that it is “a peculiar system of morality, veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols”. The reason that this is the most popular descriptions, is because it is the most accurate description that can be given for it. What does this mean, exactly? There is no simple way to describe the degree system that the initiate goes through as part of the Masonic system. The reason for this is that the experience is meant to be trans-formative for the individual and no one person will find the same path to illumination. Freemasonry holds the keys in it’s ritual, but it is up to the individual to truly find the “light”. In the following lecture, distinguished Brother W. Kirk MacNulty discusses the philosophy in Masonic symbolism and it’s connection to other philosophical systems, such as Hermeticism and Neo-Platonism.
Who were the Essenes, how are they related to Jesus Christ and how does all of this relate to Freemasonry?
The Essenesare an enigmatic sect of Jews that lived in and around Palestine and according to Josephus, they had as many as four thousand adherents. They lived a holy, peaceful existence and held similar moral ground to the Pythagoreans.
Of the three sects of Jews that existed before the life of Christ, there were the Sadducees, the Pharisees, and the Essenes. It was said that Christ often denounced the Sadducess and the Pharisees, but never mentioned the Essenes. It is also striking to note that the virtues and morals by which the Essenes ascribed to, were much the same of the virtues of Christ himself. They believed in baptism, healing, and assisting the less-fortunate. They believed material wealth was a burden and that there was virtue in being poor and living in the most modest means possible. They abstained from eating meat and saw it as akin to slavery of the flesh. They were strong adherents to keeping their wisdom secret, except to those of their order. Many of these concepts were attributed to the teachings of Christ as well and this idea of keeping the wisdom secret can be found in the fact that Jesus taught all of his word through parables, so that the commoner could not interpret their hidden meanings.
Masonic ciphers, or books of coded ritual work, have been available to Masons in America for some time. However, there was a time when this was forbidden, even if printed in coded cipher. There were some versions of the ritual that were released under different names so that they could be passed off without scrutiny. One of these “exposes” as many call them, has an Essene related name. It is called “Ecce Oriente; Or Rites and Ceremonies of the Essenes” by M. Wolcott Redding from 1870. It is my personal belief that Freemasonry teaches and promotes much of the original concepts that were embodied in early Christianity as well as other pre-Christian religions. Christianity was influenced by Gnosticism and Hermeticism, both of which are prevalent throughout the Masonic tradition. Check out the following articles for more on this fascinating topic:
This is the moment you’ve all be waiting for, right? Many of you may already know which one I am going to choose as the number one post on this blog. I have linked to it multiple times as a kind of over-arching theme and though my studies have revealed some holes in my original ideas, I still stand by it. Hope you all enjoy this one and are enjoying your own journeys as much as I am enjoying mine. Thanks for reading and keep an eye open for new exciting articles coming soon to The Point of a Sharp Instrument!
In this installment, I discuss the sacred geometric structure of the vacuum of space and how these mysterious patterns and geometric configurations have been closely guarded through the teachings of the mystery schools of antiquity. Modern science is validating these ideas more and more each day. In what ways did ancient traditions choose to veil these mysterious symbols?
Featuring spoken word from Andrew Harvey and music by Hans Christian this powerful piece entrances and takes the listener on a journey. The poetry is profound and awash with alchemical, hermetic, and mystical symbolism. Lose yourself in meditation and enjoy.
In this installment, I presented the argument that modern science owes a lot to the Ancient Mystery schools and several esoteric schools of thought. The Royal Society was a group of thinkers/scientists/philosophers who joined together to research and present new concepts and inventions and was made up of individuals who were deeply connected with the ancient traditions of alchemy, Hermeticism, and Freemasonry.