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Freemasonry - Its Hidden Meaning
by George H. Steinmetz
A spiritual interpretation of the esoteric work of the Masonic lodge, analyzes the lectures and symbols of the three degrees. (1948)
Chapter 4 - Evolution
"Our starting point is that of a divinely ordained security from which we may quietly grow into that higher evolution which is the fulfilment of the law of our own being." -Thomas Troward
WE ARE told that Masonry was originated by King Solomon at the building of his Temple. However, it is a well established fact that Masonry is an ancient esoteric philosophy of life, ancient even in King Solomon's day.
This philosophy has been traced back to the "Lost Continent of Atlantis." The Great Masters, the "Noahs," of the time, warned of the impending doom of the continent, assembled the "worthy and well qualified" of their followers and migrated to Africa. They took with them the truths of that philosophy and re-established it in their new dwelling place. There we find their ruined temples which, compared with our lodge rooms, have similar floor plans, the same "dark north," and many of the same emblems.
In this connection the following quotation from James Churchward in Children of Mu may prove very enlightening. "Many Egyptologists find enigmas concerning the two Egyptian religious cults. These apparent enigmas are brushed aside when it is known in what way Egypt was first peopled and by whom. * * * Egypt was first colonized by two sets of people, commencing at two separate and distinct parts. One set coming to lower Egypt from the west, the other set coming to upper Egypt from the east. * * * Eventual ly the upper Egyptians met the lower Egyptians on the valley of the Nile. * * * A tablet found in Maycarne, Crete, by Schliemann says: 'The Egyptians descended from Misar. Misar was the child of Thoth, the God of history. Thoth was the emigrated son of a priest of Atlantis. He built the first temple at Sais and there taught the wisdom of his native land'."
Also, in South and Central America have been found ruins of Masonic significance. Churchward advances some strong, if unusual, arguments to support his claims that all these civilizations emigrated from the continent of Mu in the Pacific Ocean.*
Modern archaeology has accomplished much in rediscovering the ruins of the ancient temples, but as yet has not succeeded in bringing to light the philosophy of the Incas and Mayans to the point where it can speak with authority. In Egypt more has been learned from the temple ruins and hieroglyphics found on other monuments and on the walls of tombs.
* Those interested in an exhaustive study are referred to the Mu trilogy by Churchward: The Lost Continent of Mu, The Children of Mu, The Sacred Symbols of Mu.
That knowledge has brought to light more Masonic allegory and symbolism, as evidenced in their beliefs and practices. Unquestionably our third degree derives from the Mysteries of Osiris, or from the still more ancient legend from which the Osirian myth itself originated. This notwithstanding that some Masons see in the third degree the "enactment of a tragedy" which occurred at a later date in history. It is of interest to note that some modern psychologists claim all these "tragedy" legends stem from t he same ancient source. Historically true or false, it is a psychological necessity, and had there been no Osiris, no Hiram, no Christ, man's mind would have been compelled to fashion one.
He who does not wish to accept the "Atlantean" account will find himself on the threshold of an even more wonderful exhibition of the universality of Freemasonry if he will analyze the facts. He must seek elsewhere for an explanation: that at different places in the world temples of similar plan, undoubtedly used for similar rites and decorated with similar and, in some instances, identical emblems, were constructed. Why should these widely separated peoples, with no means of communication, arrive at the same conclusions regarding their origin and status in the universe? The only logical answer is contained in the teaching of Mental Science of an All Intelligent Universal Subjective Mind to which all human minds have access. From it they received the TRUTH, and there being only ONE TRUTH, necessarily, they arrived at the same conclusions.
To quote Francis Grant: "If miracles exist - does not one lie in this, that men far removed, at times simultaneously, should pronounce the same doctrine of Truth and the same path of human liberation? Apparently all men - whatever their race or creed - may pluck the same flowers in the Plane of High Heaven." *
This digression from the statement that Masonry is even older than Masonic tradition claims is for the purpose of establishing more firmly in your minds the age and universality of its great philosophy. Masonry contains within its teaching the whole purpose of man's existence, and the method of attaining the end of Creative Spirit in personalizing Itself through man. Man being created in the "Image of God" possesses within himself the potential possibilities of infinite progress and evolution. Harmonizing the Biblical story of creation with the findings of modern science, evolution, when carefully considered, is not in any way contradictory to the Bible. Evolution strengthens our faith in the Bible's prophetic utter-
* Francis Grant in The Introduction to Oriental Philosophy.
ances as to man's glorious possibilities. Man's primitive beginnings, when compared with his present attainment, give us renewed faith in the Divine purpose of the Creator for man to attain even higher levels than he has already reached, by the attainment of MASTERSHIP!
Man is a complex being consisting of material, psychical, and spiritual nature, and material science alone does not completely satisfy our investigation. Therefore we must direct our attention to that element within him we call "spiritual," and it is found that man's "spiritual" nature makes for his highest attainment. The quality whereby he attains that high evolution is the POWER OF CHOICE!
The creative law of being, implanted in man by Divine Intelligence, gives man the "freedom of choice," whether to spiritually retrograde or progress. The choice, however, lies between these two; there is no standing still in this universe of motion. Natural evolution betters the entire race without regard for the individual. SPIRITUAL EVOLUTION betters the INDIVIDUAL THROUGH HIS OWN EFFORTS. The statement that: "previously the Lodge prayed for you" is, in effect, advising that: "before the LAW OF EVOLUT ION ADVANCED YOU)); "NOW, You must (pray for) advance YOURSELF!"
In bringing the candidate to that part in the initiation where he must pray for himself, the Lodge has brought him to the same point as all others who have gone the way before him. From this point (level) individual desire is necessary to make further progress. It is a PERSONAL PROBLEM of "ASKING" - "SEEKING" "KNOCKING." This not only applies to that particular moment in the Lodge room but to any further progress in Masonry. In fact it is not too inclusive to add - ANY PROGRESS IN LIFE ITSELF!
Our quest is for the re-discovery of something lost. It is the knowledge of the two-fold principle in nature and specifically, knowledge of the modus operandi of the Constructive Principle. The loss of the knowledge of the Constructive Principle in nature brought into man's existence its opposite, the Destructive Principle.
Light is the symbol of knowledge, and knowledge properly used leads to wisdom and power. Therefore the Ancient High-Priest's breastplate had engraven thereon the two words: "URIM and THUMMIM"
LIGHTS AND PERFECTIONS!
- By Way of Introduction
- Masonry - Religion
- Mental Science
- The Secret Doctrine
- Entered Apprentice
- Entered Apprentice Lecture
- Fellow Craft
- Middle Chamber Lecture
- Master Mason
- The Great Moral Lesson
- Master Mason Lecture
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