Baphomet-the greatly misunderstood

The Templars were accused of heresy for various spurious reasons, including the supposed worship of the being, Baphomet. This baseless accusation is still being against Freemasons to this very day.  Derived from the Greek words for baptism and wisdom, Baphomet is a symbol that can only really be understood by delving deeply into the Mystery traditions and Gnosticism. The fact that Satanism adopted the Baphomet image has caused further confusion and damage to the Brotherhood. This short, but sweet video helps provide some clarification on the issue.

 

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Taking the “Con” out of Conspiracy

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What is really going on in the world? As we all know, there are some crazy events going on in the world right now. Bombings, paranoia of terrorism, zombie apocalypses, loss of constitutional rights, chemtrails, the list goes on and on. All of the worries that an individual takes on in daily life is astronomical. Fear is the enemy of freedom and will perpetually keep us from the truth. We must cut through the muck of the various conspiracies and get to the truth within.

There is a bizarre dual-edged sword dividing two different factions of conspiracy theorists. On one side of the coin you have the religious fundamentalists, who think that anything outside of their small church community bubble is evil and sinful. Then, you have the freedom fighting, liberal contingent attempting to stand up to the evils of society. Both groups have their pros and cons and hold pertinent belief systems in one way or the other.

Though I would definitely describe myself as one of the free thinking types, I can see the points of some of the religious extremists as well. With these two sides of the coin, there is also an edge. On this edge lies the truth elements that are held within these belief systems. What that leaves is the two broad sides of the coin which hold the bulk of these systems. It is up to us as individual truth-seekers, to see through the extremist beliefs and find the truth in all of this. As a Freemason and activist, I am caught up in the undertow of the conspiracy theory. On one hand, the fundamentalist Christian sees me as a Satan-worshiping heretic. On the other, the freedom movement sees me as a part of the evil, Illuminati-fed, world domination machine.

All of this aside, I joined the Masonic fraternity out of curiosity and my hunger for the truth. I myself used to believe that Freemasonry was evil and that Masons were the scourge of the earth. However, as I grew older and wiser, I learned that to see the whole picture you must experience things. It was a leap of faith that I had to take. In Masonry, I have found a new drive to connect with my spiritual side. In seeking the Mysteries, I have found a path to truth. This is a feeling that I have never experienced before. I have realized that my place in the universe was as important as it is insignificant. I learned that the only way to find the answer is to seek it out.

This is not to say that all things about the Craft are perfect. There are and have been bad people involved in Masonry, along with all other walks of life. The Craft is not today, what it was originally intended to be. It has been watered down like all other paths to truth. This is done to turn off would-be truth seekers. This is the case with most great paths to spirituality and enlightenment. This is a defense mechanism used to ward off those who don’t have the drive to find out for themselves what is really going on. The biblical lessons taught in church are done with dry, emotionless, and dogmatic overtones. This is done to take the life out of truly inspired teachings. These teachings that were meant to liberate and show the path to peace are portrayed as rules that are enforced by a vengeful God. This is all part of the War on Human Consciousness that is taking place and has been taking place ever since the rise of the European nations and their quest for power. All of this aside, you can learn to see through the lies by gaining first-hand experience and by taking chances.

Conspiracy theories exist for a reason. They exist because there are many unanswered questions that we deal with everyday. Trusting our government gets harder to do by the day. Why are so many people out there suffering while the corporations keep raking in the bucks? Why is our economy in shambles, yet we keep going to war over and over and over again? Why is our food being tampered with? Why are our rights being taken away every single day? I don’t have the answers for these questions. No one really does. All that we can do is continue to listen to different points of view, read books, and try to avoid buying the lies. We can continue to seek the real answers. There is a “con” in every conspiracy, but there is also truth. It is up to us as truth-seekers to find our own answers. The answer is within and without everyone and everything.

The Truth about Masonic Symbolism

Freemasonry is a misunderstood tradition. People have all sorts of wild ideas about what Masonry really is and what it’s symbolism could possibly mean. The truth is, even many Masons out there are not aware that Masonic symbolism goes very deep and has an esoteric, as well as exoteric meaning. This symbolism is the heart and soul of Masonry and teaches truths that defy words.

Before written languages, ancient civilizations used symbols to communicate ideas and to teach truths. Many of these symbols are so similar across the globe, that it leads one to believe that they might be inherent to the human mind. Even if these symbols are not understood at first glance, they still have an effect on us.

Freemasonry uses symbols in addition to ritual to communicate great moral truths. As the candidate advances through the initiations, they are given explanations of the exoteric meanings of these symbols. It is up to the candidate to dig deeper and find the esoteric meanings within these symbols that will open the doors of the mind. Like the layers of an onion, these symbols can be peeled away layer by layer revealing new truths each time.

Going into the entire gamut of Masonic symbolism would take more time than I have, so I will go into just a few of the most iconographic symbols of the Craft. The Square and Compasses and the letter G and the point within a circle.

First off, we have the most recognizable of all Masonic symbols. The symbol by which the Craft is known. The Square and Compasses with the letter G in the center. The square and compasses are actual masonry tools of the operative stone masons. They are used by the craftsmen to design and perfect stones for building. Why then were these tools used to represent speculative, or philosophic Masonry, in which no actual operative masonry is conducted? The Regius Poem, or Manuscript circa 1390, that operative stonemasons were taught to live by a moral code and that this was inherent to the early craft guilds. These tools were used to perfect stones for building and are used in Speculative Masonry to represent the perfection of the self through moral teachings. The letter G in the center is an open-ended symbol and can stand for God, Geometry, Genesis, or even the Generative principle. It is to show that these concepts are at the center of Masonry and are the backbone of the teachings.

This exoteric explanation is only part of the story of the Square and Compasses. These symbols hold a much deeper and profound teaching. We learn through the Mystery traditions that the square is likened to the earthly realm, while the circle is likened to the heavenly realm. This is encapsulated in the alchemical concept of “squaring the circle”. Both of these elements are tied together by the very symbols used to denote the Craft. These elements can be looked at metaphorically as well. The earthly realm is that of animal instincts and is ruled by creature comforts, whereas the heavenly is ruled by the virtuousness and morality. As the candidate advances through the degrees of Masonry, the Compasses are said to be elevated above the Square, symbolizing that the individual’s soul is on the path to perfection and that they should be driven by divine pursuits rather than the vices of earthly pleasures. This is, in essence the goal of the Masonic teachings.

Secondly, is the point within a circle. This symbol is one of the oldest symbols known to man and has carried over into all parts of the world. It is the symbol for the sun in ancient cultures such as Egypt. It also resembles an eye, which is often a symbol for God. In Masonry, the point is representative of the individual and the circle represents the moral boundaries of society. This is to show that we belong within these boundaries and should never stray.

Yet again, this is only the exoteric meaning of “the point within a circle” symbol. Alchemy is one of the great mystery traditions of antiquity and uses a process to achieve and end result. Like Freemasonry, Alchemy also employs an operative process to teach an internal, moral perfection. Alchemy is most commonly known as a process of changing base-metals into gold, and although this may have been one of it’s goals, it was not the primary goal. Alchemical Gold is a metaphor for perfection. Perfection of the human soul. The alchemical symbol for gold (or perfection) is a point within a circle. This perfection of the self, or soul, is the same goal of Freemasonry.

In the quest for enlightenment, we must look to all of the ancient mystery teachings for guidance. Each system has it’s own powerful system of symbols. These symbols may seem mysterious at first, but if studied can unlock great truths. They should be understood, rather than feared. Hopefully, through this latest series of blogs, I have shone some light on the misunderstood elements of Freemasonry. It is up to you to explore them further and to find your own truths within.

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The Western Mystery Traditions: Freemasonry

I searched high and low for a video that would do justice to this 6th and final presentation of the Western Mystery Traditions. However, anyone who has ever done an internet search on the word Freemason, knows what they will get. Accusations of Satanism, Luciferianism, and general malaise. Freemasonry is often accused of World domination and sun worship. These are just some of the ridiculous accusations leveled toward The Craft. Being an advance initiate of this fraternity, I know what Freemasonry is about and would rather just tell you about it myself. Granted, there are some bad people who are involved and have been involved in Freemasonry now, and in the past, but there are bad people involved in every organization in the world. There are plenty of great people involved as well. Freemasonry is incredibly misunderstood. Hopefully the following will shed some light on this fraternity.
The worlds oldest fraternal organization, Freemasonry has ancient roots. The actual date of the organization is debatable, but some think it goes all the way back to ancient Greece and Egypt. Historians aren’t for sure. We know that the most likely roots are of the medieval stone mason guilds in Europe. These guilds were democratic in structure and consisted of Apprentices, Fellowcrafts, and Masters of the work. The apprentice did the leg work while being taught by the fellowcrafts and after perfecting their work, they would move on to be fellows themselves. After serving as a teacher for some time, they would take over as masters and designers of the building projects. They lived by a moral code and none, but provenly good men were allowed to join the guilds. They prided themselves in learning and had progressive ideas. Many of these ideals had to be kept secret from the ruling monarchies and the Church as these ideas were considered too liberal and a threat to the status quo of rulership. Because of this, they had to keep many of their teachings secret to avoid persecutions. They used complex sacred geometry to build magnificent cathedrals all throughout Europe. They seemed to have a magical grasp on the connection of earth and the heavens.
In one of the more astonishing convergences in history, the guilds began allowing non-stone masons into the group. These men were referred to as Speculative Masons, their involvement being solely based in the spiritual and moral teachings. The men that they allowed in were intellectuals with strongly spiritual and scientific ideas.
Gradually, the Speculative part of the Craft began to replace the Operative and it grew into the organization that it is today. Rituals were developed that had strong moral and spiritual teachings embedded within. Elements of occulted teachings like Alchemy, Hermeticism, Astrology, and Cosmology worked their way into the ritual. The ritual was kept secretive out of necessity, but also to make the work more impacting on it’s initiates. Masonry has become the modern vehicle for and care-taker of these mystery traditions.

Masonry has claimed many famous people among it’s ranks and has had a part in countless historical events that have shaped the modern world. It’s strong beliefs in religious tolerance and democratic system have made it attractive to progressive thinkers and infamous to the early church system.
Due to various hoaxes and a few legitimate events, Masonry has been vilified by society. Many believe that at some point, the infamous Bavarian Illuminati infiltrated the fraternity and have been using it as a tool for world domination ever since. The fact that countless politicians have been promoters of the Craft and it’s ceremonies are secretive has caused many a raised-eyebrow in the general public.
What’s not understood is that the ceremonies are not secret because they contain any information that needs to be kept from the masses, but that the secretive element helps the initiate reflect upon their own character. The psychology of secrecy is used as a test upon the individuals self control. The moral teachings held within the rituals promote integrity, education, virtue, and tolerance. They use the allegory of the building of King Solomon’s temple from the Old Testament as a backdrop. The fraternity promotes kinship, charity, and strength of character to it’s members.
Freemasonry is vastly misunderstood, but it’s true intentions are good. It’s one of the only remaining mystery schools of the ancient world. It deserves to be looked at again. It has helped me to find a path to truth and if used as originally intended can help one to perfect themselves and become a more compassionate individual.