Issued under the auspices of The Brotherhood of Light
Some mention was made in the last lesson of the origin of Scottish Rite Masonry. and in this place I shall briefly consider the origin of York Rite Masonry. Because he seems to be correct in this matter and because he also is a Mason of high degree, I again quote passages from Albert Churchward, as found in his "Arcana of Freemansonry.
Serial No. 17 Course IV. -- L.
Box 1525, Los Angeles, Calif. August 1917 August 1927
Part XII. Ineffable Degrees.
by C. C. Zain
"As regards the origin from Druids. I have given in 'Signs and Symbols of Primordial Man' the proofs of the origin of the Druids, and where they came from. They were High Priests of Egypt, who left the mother country at the early part of the Solar Cult, and were therefore well versed both in the seven Lesser Mysteries until the ten Greater Mysteries; and these practiced their religious rites in England until the edict of Canute prohibited their own worship. Canute reigned from 1015 to 1036. To evade persecution they resorted to private meetings and secret celebrations. I do not entertain any doubt that they formed the first so-called 'Lodges' in England, as a cloak to screen their religious rites and ceremonies, and to keep them as pure as they had received them originally from their parent sources in Egypt. Many of these old Druid Priests joined Christian Church, and were the so-called Culdees. That although they had joined the Christian Church, they kept themselves very much aloof for a long period, up to the twelfth century.
"These were the last remnants of the old Druid Priests--descendants of their Egyptian brethren--who practiced the pure Eschatology of their forefathers. Gradually they all died out as a separate and distinct class, and those who remained were merged into Christianity; but up to the twelfth century at least they brought all their doctrines with them, and practiced them in secret places, in so-called Lodges.
--Here we have on source of the origin of Freemasonry, both is the Lesser Mysteries (seven degrees) and in the Greater Mysteries--so--called Higher Degrees is this country.
"The Druids, in Gaul, were mostly put to the sword, others fled to this country for protection, when the Roman Christian doctrines were brought to them. In American it was the same. As soon as the Spanish Roman Priests arrived there they persecuted all the Solar and Stellar people, murdered their priests, overthrow their Temples, and scattered them with fire and sword. Yet there is sufficient evidence left in their Signs, Symbols, and writings on the wall which may prove my contention that all these had the same Eschatology, signs, symbols, and rites as the Old Egyptian, from whence they came, and that all these are analogous to our own with really very little innovation, considering the many thousands of years that these have been handed down from country to country, and generation to generation, as we must acknowledge to be the case if we study the history of the human part."
The Secret Master degree is based upon the Fourteenth Major Arcanum of the Tarot which symbolizes regeneration and the application of the Master's Word. The latter was received in the Seventh, or Royal Arch degree. Astrologically the Secret Master degree corresponds to the zodiacal sign Taurus, where, after the resurrection on the cross of Aries, the sun fecundates the earth and brings forth the succulent verdure of spring. It is the positive rays of the sun mingling with the negative nature of Taurus--which is the exaltation of the Moon--that regenerates the whole world.
A Secret Master Lodge is said to represent the Sanctuary of Solomon's Temple, the Astral plane, which adjoins the Sanctum Santorum, or world of spirits. It is hung with black sprinkled with white tears to symbolize the realm of purification entered into after the resurrection from the wintry tomb through Aries. It is lighted by nine candelabras of nine lights each. The nine candelabras represent the nine decanates the sun passes through in its regeneration from the vernal equinox to the summer solstice. The eighty-one lights symbolize the eighty-one days it takes the moon to thrice circle the zodiac--each time being born to new life--to represent the life of the soul and its transition on all three planes. The Master is dressed as King Solomon, and sits before a triangular table to signify his actions on these three planes of life. He is dressed in royal robes to symbolizes his authority, and holds in his hand scepter, symbol of his virile power. A large ribbon of blue indicates knowledge gained through experiences with matter, winter, or Saturn. It extends from the right shoulder to the left hip, indicating knowledge of sex energy, and at the hip is suspended a golden triangle, signifying that this energy may be used on all three planes to gain illumination.
The second officer is the Lost Orb, Adoniram, the symbolical soul mate of Hiram Abiff. He is clothed in black robe and cap to indicate mourning, an decorated with a white ribbon bordered with black, to indicate the dawning light of hope for immortality. The ribbon has a black rosette on it, representing the autumnal equinox and the triumph of material forces. Also suspended from it is an ivory key, a spiritual key, with the letter z engraved upon it. Z is a double 7, a union of a positive 7, or physically perfect man, with a negative 7, or physically perfect woman. It is the union of two open trines, an open trine meaning energy expended. But in this union there is compensation, and the energies are directed along the highest lines possible to embodied man, regenerate forces being used for a definite purpose.
The other brethren wear black robes and cap, white aprons with black strings and white gloves. They represent the union positive and negative zodiacal signs has apron strings indicating the equinox. The flap of the apron is blue, indicating knowledge of sex gained through experiences. Upon the flap is golden eye, symbol of spiritual wisdom.
Adoniram, asked if he is a Secret Master replies," I have passed from the square to the compass: I have seen the tomb of our respectful Master Hiram Abiff, and shed tears at the same". This symbolizes the moon as well as the sun passing through the\ rains of winter and crossing the vernal equinox. The winter union with the sun is signified by the square and that of summer by the compass. To the soul the tomb of the missing mate is the material world where both must sojourn, usually separated by its barriers, a cause for mourning. But there is also cause for hope as indicated by Hiram saying, "The dawn of day has driven away darkness, and the great light begins to shine in the Lodge." This is the dawn of resurrection, or in physical life illumination through regeneration. The Master raps seven times to signify that the brethren are perfect physical men, and says, "If the great light is a token of the dawn of day, and we are all Secret Masters, it is time to begin our labors". The labor refers to the work of the sun in summer preparing the crops for harvest, and to the work on the astral plane of assisting others less progressed, the assistance being rendered by those who have entered into regeneration, and to the even more strenuous labor performed in that region by those who have consciously passed through the tomb death.
The candidate when admitted is led to the altar and kneels on his right knee, symbolizing his desire to render positive service. His head is bound, and fastened to his forehead by the bandage is a square, symbolizing the duties and obligations that still bind him to those yet struggling in the throes of matter. In his right hand is a great light, signifying his intention to labor spreading knowledge. On the altar is a crown of laurel and olive leaves, indicating his double victory, that of strife and that of love. The words are Shaddai, Adonai, and Juha, mystically signifying--Praise be to the Lord of the new Light. The pass-word is Zizon, signifying a double triumph, that over the physical and that over the inner nature. The sign is given by placing the two forefingers of the right hand on the lips, indicating silence concerning the mysteries of both planes. The token is given by crossing the legs as the hands join in the Lion's grip. The crossed legs symbolize the solstitial cross and the grip indicates the power of the sun in Leo by which he raises the moon from the winter signs to be united with him in the regenerate signs of summer. It represents the power of the purified soul to find and rescue its lost mate from the bondage of matter.
In closing, Adoniram is asked his duty, and replies that it is to guard the furniture of the Sanctorum, consisting of the altar of incense, the two tables of shew-bread and the golden candlesticks. The tables of shew-bread signify the result of experiences with good and evil which is assimilated by man's spiritual nature. The candlesticks are placed five on the north and five on the south of the holy place, and thus symbolizes man and woman. The age of Adoniram is stated to be three times twenty-seven, meaning the twenty-seven days it takes the moon to complete its circle of life around the zodiac, three times around symbolizing the soul's progress through three planes. The special emblem of the Secret Master degree is a triangle in which are the Hebrew letters Jod-He-Vau-He surrounded by light. This is the Master's Word as revealed to Enoch, applicable alike on all three planes. It is the secret of uniting positive and negative forces to produce the spiral of life.
The Perfect Master degree is based upon the Twentieth Major Arcanum of the Tarot, symbolizing the day of judgment and corresponding astrologically to the moon. The lodge is hung with green tapestry, the color sacred to the moon on eight columns, four on each side at equal distances, symbolizing perfect equilibrium, and justice received. There are sixteen lights placed at the cardinal points to represent the three signs and the presiding ruler of each zodiacal quarter. A pyramid stands in the north with open compass upon it, symbolizing the earth as an epitome of the universe under the direction of stellar law. The pyramid is the most stable form. The base is typical of the square of matter and the sides represent the four zodiacal triplicities meeting in a common point. Its most important significance is that of the earth being the womb of the universe from which is born, after its period of gestation, the Son of God. The pyramid at the north symbolizes the earth under law, but as yet uninhabited by intelligent life. Another pyramid in the south has a blazing star upon it to represent gestation competed and the earth being delivered of its child, Man, who rules the world while in it, and when born into the realm above may become a god. A table stands before the canopy covered with black to typify the plane of death.
The assistant are decorated with a green ribbon about the neck from which is hung a compass extended to 60 degrees, symbolizing by the green ribbon, love received, and by the compass harmonious union. The brethren wear black caps and robes, indicative of having passed he tomb of materialism; aprons of white leather with green flaps, signifying the reception of the reward for purity. Upon the apron is embroidered a square symbolizing the earth surrounded by Mundane Houses, Zodiacal Signs, and Constellations, through all of which penetrate the divine fire, or J. The hour being four, the time when the sun at the equinox enters the first house of the horoscope, or house of life, it is time for the brethren to go to work, or enter upon the duties of the new life beyond matter.
The candidate has a green cord placed about his neck which is finally withdrawn by the Master to symbolize the Moon passing out of the spring sign Taurus to a more elevated station, and man ready to be raised to a love higher than that of earth, an immortal work signified by the sprig of cassia placed in his left hand. The first sign is given by placing the palm of the left hand upon the right temple and stepping back with the right foot and again bringing it to its first position. It refers to the constructive use of virile energy in recovering the lost spiritual state. The second sign is made by raising the hands and eyes upward and letting the hands fall crossed in front, at the same time dropping the eyes downward, meaning the fall into temptation, from spirit into matter, or the sun across the autumnal equinox. The pass-word is Acacia, symbolizing immortality. The token is that of a mark Master, given on the five points of fellowship as explained in that degree. The Mysterious word is Je-Vau, meaning divine fire in union. The candidate approaches the East by four times four steps, from a pair of compasses extended from an angle of seven degrees to that of sixty degrees. The four times four refers to traversing the zodiacal circle, twelve signs ruled by the lords of the four seasons, corresponding to the sixteen Court Cards of the tarot. From seven degrees refers to perfect physical manhood, and sixty degrees refers to perfect union.
The tomb of Hiram was of black and white marble, good and evil experiences on earth. It was entered between the two pillars, winter and summer, supporting a stone surrounded by three circles, already explained. The heart of Hiram was enclosed in a golden urn, symbol of spiritual affection. It was pierced by a sword to indicate the afflictions befalling those who attempt to realize their spiritual ideals of affection on earth, and the resurrection of those ideals beyond matter; the sword representing transition over the cross of Aries. It is the action of a luminary in Leo, the heart; in Scorpio, the urn; and in Aries, the sword. On the tomb was engraved the letter J, the virile Hebrew Jod. To the side of the urn was fastened a triangular stone on which were the letters J M B, surrounded by a wreath of cassia. The urn was placed upon the top of an obelisk erected on the tomb, symbolizing the solstitial colure, the foot resting on the tomb of winter, and the top, or summer solstice, being the highest point of heaven where the luminary passing through the tomb will finally be elevated. J is Jachin from which the soul falls, B is Bear, the winter signs, or material realm where it falls, and M (see Course VI) is Aries where resurrection takes place. The triangular stone represents the experience of body, soul, and ego with material conditions, and the wreath of cassia surrounding the letters denoting the pilgrimage indicates that immortality has been attained. Hiram, the moon, returning to its home in Cancer, the summer solstice, is greeted by Solomon, the sun, who says with joy in his heart, "It is accomplished and complete". The special emblem of this degree is a coffin with a five-point star on the lid, and leaning over it a sprig of cassia. It signifies man enshrouded in the tomb of earth being promised immortal life in other realms.
The intimate Secretary degree is based upon the Eighteenth Major Arcanum of the tarot, symbolizing false friends and deception. It corresponds astrologically to the sign Cancer. The Lodge is hung with black spangles with white tears to represent the realm of purification after death. There is a triangular table on which is a scroll' and crossed swords, representing the record inscribed in the astral light of man's struggles on all three planes of endeavor. The Masters wear long blue robes and caps, symbol of wisdom gained through experience; their aprons are bordered with red, the white symbolizing purity, and the red passion of purpose. On the apron is a scroll, and a golden triangle with the letters A P P in its corners. The letter A of the tarot symbolizes will, and P symbolizes hope. The scroll and lettered triangle signify spiritual effort on all three planes is sustained by will and two hopes; hopes of future life, and hopes of future love. All are recorded in the book of life. They also wear a red ribbon with a golden triangle suspended form it, meaning energy to be used on three planes. Their gloves are white, bordered with red, signifying purity and energy in execution. On the Bible is laid a triple triangle, symbolizing the law of perfect coordination between body, soul, and ego on all three planes.
The candidate in this degree takes the part of spy who listens at the veil, is captured an condemned by Hiram King of Tyre, and is freed by the intercession of Solomon. Astrologically it symbolizes the moon separating from the sun and passing into the captivity of opposite zodiacal signs and finally being rescued form them by its return to the sun. It represents the soul of man after death in the twilight realms of the astral undergoing judgment for deeds done in the flesh and being found worthy after some purification to enter more spiritual realms because of the strength of its rapport with the ego.
The first sign is made by closing the right hand and drawing it from the left shoulder to the right hip. It refers to the fall of man through the destructive use of sex. It is also the fall of the sun into winter. The second sign is made by crossing the arms in front and holding them up so the thumbs touch opposite temples, speaking the mysterious work Je-Vau. It refers to constructive use of virile powers in union: astrologically the resurrection of the sun on the vernal cross, the mysterious word signifying its subsequent union with the moon. The grip is given by joining the right hands and turning them downward thrice, saying one of these words, at each turn: Berith, Nedir, Shelmoth. These words symbolize the autumnal equinox, the winter solstice, or lowest point, and the vernal equinox, respectively, and each turn of the hands signifies the union of the sun and moon after the sun passes these points. It signifies man and woman united in indulgence, in proper generation, and in regeneration. The pass-word is Joabert, and the response is Terbel. Joabert is the listener, or the soul seeking to be conscious of the inner voice. Terbel is the guard of the inner realms, the dweller on the threshold.
Provost and Judge
The degree of Provost and Judge is based upon the Seventeenth Major Arcanum of the Tarot, symbolizing the star of hope, and corresponding astrologically to the sign Gemini. The lodge is hung with red tapestries to represent the energies actuating life. There are five candelabras of five lights each, four being at the corners of the room and the other being in the center. The number five is the symbol of man. Each of the candelabras at the corners symbolizing man evolving through the zodiacal Quarter corresponding to one of the four kingdoms: mineral, vegetable, animal, and Man, and the candelabra in the center represents man after his transit to the realm of purification where he recapitulates his past evolution and passes judgment upon his conduct. In the east is an illuminated transparent triangles in which is a circle around which are the letters J A I N, with a blazing star in the center on which are three J's. The triangle represents infinite Life, Light, and Love, the source of all being. The circle is the zodiac, and the letters symbolize the divine influx from above as transmitted through each zodiacal quadrant. J represents the divine fire Leo, A represents the will Scorpio, I represents intelligence in Aquarius, and N represents regenerate energy in Taurus. The blazing star in the center is man, the focus of universal force, retaining a portion for his own use, reflecting the finer essence above, and refracting the grosser portions of the One Life Principle below, as symbolized by the three J's.
The brethren wear black robes and caps to symbolize their passage through the tomb of death; white aprons trimmed with red to symbolize purity sustained by virile energy; with a red and white rosette on the apron to signify regeneration and translation to spiritual life; and a pocket in which to carry plans, the ideas formulated and vitalized in union. On the flap is a golden key, and another suspended from a red collar. The red collar is symbol of ardent affections, and the golden key signifies astrological knowledge. The hour is said to be break of day; 8, 2, and 7; meaning the entrance into a new life in higher realms has started through 8--Judgment--2-- with the aid Esoteric Science--and 7--Victory over all temptations. They all combine in seventeen, the Star of Hope for future joy (see Course VI).
The candidate is led to the southwest corner of the lodge where the sun sinks in winter at eh close of day, and is there instructed to kneel and pronounce the word Beroke, meaning to descend. The Master then says "Kumi", meaning to rise, signifying a new epoch begun even as the sun rises at break of day. The first sign is to place to first two fingers of the right hand to the side of the nose with the thumb under the chin, symbolizing the will to use the energy of Mars, signified by the chin, to vitalize the etheric bodies ruled by Jupiter who also rules the nose. The physical body is also to be considered in this process as the finger of Saturn is used as well as that of Jupiter. The second sign is like the first except that one finger only is used, signifying the use of Mars energy to vitalize the etheric body. The token is given by clenching the three first fingers over the thumb and interlacing the little fingers. It means that will is to be subjected to science, as Mercury rules the little finger and also rules science. The pass-word is Tito, the first to draw plans for the workmen. This signifies the formulative power of the intellect. The candidate having given the pass-word and signs is presented with a key to a small ebony box which contains the plans for building the Temple, and a key for opening an ivory box containing all the Temple keys. The bony box is man's physical constitution, containing a correspondence to the universe. It is unlocked by practical astrology. The ivory box is man's spiritual constitution and soul containing the keys to all spiritual mysteries. It is unlocked by the spiritual astrology so carefully preserved in Masonry.
Intendant of the Building
This degree is based upon the Nineteenth Major Arcanum of the tarot. It symbolizes reunion and corresponds to the zodiacal sign Leo. The lodge is lighted with three candelabras with nine lights each, the symbolism of which has already been explained. In addition there are five candles in the east to indicate man rising into another Sphere of influence.
The brethren wear white aprons lined with red and bordered with green, symbolizing purity, energy, and receptive capacity. On the apron is a star with nine points, symbolizing wisdom gained under planetary influence; a sprig of cassia, representing immortality; and balance, emblem of justice. On the corners of the triangular flap are the letters B A J, symbolizing occult science illumined by divine fire, directed by will. The collar is of red to indicate affectional energy, and from it is suspended a golden trine with the letters J A B in the corners, and in the center three J's. The three J's represent the divine fire penetrating the three worlds. On the reverse of the triangle the three J's are in the corners and G is in the center, indicating the divine fire used in generation. As used on the first side they indicate that the divine fire aids the will to remove the veil of Isis.
In this degree of chief of the five orders of architecture is selected to fill the vacant place of Hiram Abiff. The five orders of architecture are: Tuscan, Doric, Ionic, Corinthian, and Composite. The first four represent the zodiacal quarters and their correspondences. The composite, a combination of the others, symbolize man. The true soul mate being lost a worthy substitute is selected to assist in the work. The obligation is taken while the candidate lies prostrate, and he is lifted under a sprig of cassia by the Lion's grip. The signs and pass-words all refer to the separation of sun and moon, of man and woman, to the sorrowful descent into he winter signs, or matter; and to the renascent to spiritual realms, reunion, and consequent immortality. In the closing lecture the Senior Warden says:" I have made the five steps of exactness: I have penetrated the inmost part of the Temple; and I have seen the great light, in the middle of which were three mysterious letter." The five steps of exactness refer to evolution through four kingdoms and the entering of the fifth, the kingdom of regenerate man. It also indicates the successive subjugation of the five physical senses leading to illumination and the use of the creative energy to explore the three planes, as signified by the J's.
Master's Elect of Nine
This degree is based upon the Sixteenth Major Arcanum of the tarot, symbolizing catastrophe. It corresponds astrologically to the planet Mars. Solomon had appointed nine Masters to go to the spot where it had been learned one of the assassins of Hiram Abiff was concealed. Mars, one of the nine planets, represented by Joabert, steals ahead of the others and discovers the murderer asleep with a poniard at his feet. This is the equinox at the foot of Pisces. Mars takes the poniard and stabs first in the head, Aries, and then in the heart, Leo. He then cuts off the villain's head and taking it in one hand and the bloody knife in the other returns to Solomon's home. The place of sunrise, Jubulum, is killed by the vernal cross, wielded by Mars. He is first stabbed in the head to indicate the sun rising in Aries, and later in the heart, in Leo, to which the sun returns. Cutting off the head signifies that the rising sun has passed out of Aries. Its influence in the sign of the head has been cut off, and he passes to the rightful place of Solomon, in Leo. The sign is made by striking toward the companion's forehead as if stabbing, and the companion placing his hand to the spot as if feeling of a wound; then striking at the companion heart crying Nekum, and the companion answering by placing his hand on his breast and saying Necar. These words mean Vengeance, and Vengeance if Taken. The jewel of the order is a gold-handled dagger with a silver blade. The handle and blade symbolizes the summer and winter signs, and the guard symbolizes the equinox.
Masters Elect of Fifteen
The degree Masters Elect of Fifteen is based upon the fifteenth Major Arcanum of the tarot. It symbolizes the fate of the Evil, and corresponds astrologically to the planet Saturn. The two other assassins of Hiram Abiff were not captured and punished with the first. Through one of his Intendants Solomon learned that two persons answering their description had come to the country of Cheth and were working in the quarries. Cheth is the eighth Hebrew letter and presides over the Eighth Major Arcanum of the tarot, which symbolizes justice and corresponds to the sign Capricorn, the home of Saturn. Capricorn is the winter sign that symbolizes crystallization and has rule over quarries.
In front of each of the two officers that symbolize the sun and the moon, one in the east and one in the west, is a candelabra of five lights, one candelabra to represent man and one candelabra to a represent woman. The brethren wear white aprons on which are pictured a square city, a form of birth-chart still used by Raphael in his annual ephemeris. It has three gates, and over each a human head impaled on a spire. These represent the three visible angles of the heavens, or assassins. Jubulum was Captured in the preceding degree in a cave--that is in Capricorn--stabbed with the Vernal cross at the foot of Pisces, decapitated by passing into Taurus, and finally this representative of the Ascendant at sunrise returns to Leo carried by the strength of regenerate Mars, In the present degree Jubela and Jubelo--Midheaven and Descendant--are captured in Capricorn and are carried from this region of crystallization into the warm months of summer, or Jerusalem. Their heads are cut off as they pass from Aries, and as they pass the summer solstice into Cancer, which rules the belly, their bodies are cut open. The sign of the degree is to place the point of a poinard under the chin and draw it downward to the waist speaking the word Zerbul. It symbolizes the passage of the sun from Aries across the solstitial cross to the sign Libra.
Sublime Knights Elected.
The degree is based upon the Twenty second Major Arcanum of the tarot, symbolizing the foolish man. It corresponds astrologically to the earth, or in its interior aspect to the Lost Orb. Solomon rewarded twelve of the Masters for their efforts to apprehend the assassins of Hiram Abiff by conferring upon them this degree and giving them command over the Twelve Tribes of Israel. They represent the twelve signs of the zodiac. The zodiacal circle crossed by equinox and solstice is the symbol of the world. By removing the circle, or spiritual portion of the symbol, we have the cross of earth in its most material aspect. If the upper bar of the cross be removed the result is the Tau Cross, or English T, the primitive phallic symbol of creative energy directed to material ends. The lower bar, or vertical line, indicates the sun in Capricorn at the winter solstice. It represents man spending his energies for material advantage, the worldly wise and spiritually foolish. By reversing the T so that the lower bar is missing we have a representation of the sun at the summer solstice as it enters Cancer, signifying virile energies directed to spiritual construction. And herein lies the paradox of the twenty second card of the tarot, a card few students have understood; for the man that to the worldly may seem foolish may really have reversed the Tau and be a true sage who ignores the things that many spend their energies to obtain.
The candidate in this degree is required to swallow a piece of the heart of Hiram Abiff which is presented to him on a trowel by the Master. He is told that he may swallow it without injury if he is a faithful Mason but that it will not remain in the body of one perjured. This heart is the zodiacal sign, Leo, symbol of affection, through the power of which Hiram is again united to Solomon. The trowel is an instrument used to bind together. Its form represents two souls occupying one form and overshadowed by a common ego. The candidate partaking of the heart on the trowel symbolically enacts the permanent reunion of soul-mates; the reward of the spiritually wise, whose efforts are denoted by the reversed T. Astrologically it is the reunion of the sun and moon in Leo, which is the sign that rules the house of love in a chart of birth. Grand Master Architect This degree is said to have been founded by King Solomon as a school of architects where deserving craftsman might receive proper instruction. These Grand Master Architects are men who have mastered the various occult and lucidic sciences and have been found worthy to serve as Masters to struggling neophytes. The Chapter is decorated with white hangings, sprinkled with red flames, symbolizing purity combined with fiery enthusiasm.. The five orders of architecture are present, symbolizing man who contains within himself the zodiacal quarters corresponding to the four kingdoms of elemental life. Man's rightful place is that of Master Architect directing the four elemental realms of life in their work of cosmic construction. The apron is stone colored, to indicate work to be done upon earth, and has star on it to signify man as the chief of that work. The jewel is a gold medal with the five orders of architecture, a start, and a case of mathematical instruments, on each side. It symbolizes man measuring planetary angles and positions in the zodiac, and utilizing his knowledge of astrological cycles, forces and angles to direct the elementals in their work of assisting evolutionary progress.
The candidate makes a tour of the room, which represents the zodiac, and draws an exact plan of it top illustrate his ability to compute astrological positions and map the heavens. There is a star in the north with seven other stars around it to represent the Polar Star, the "Rock of Ages", about which swings the septenary of planets. It is called the guiding star of the order; for it is symbolical of the immutability of divine law, and is the axis of all mundane reckoning. The Chapter is said to be opened on the first instant, the first hour, the first day, the first year, when Solomon commenced the Temple. This is according to the prescribed rules of astrology; as a chart of the heavens for the instant of commencing an enterprise indicates its future success or failure, even as a short of the instant of physical birth reveals a child's physical destiny.
The sign is made by sliding the right hand into the palm of the left, clenching the fingers of the right hand and tracing a plan with the thumb in the other's left hand, looking at him as if taking dictation. It refers to man and woman united and taking advantage of astrological conditions to promote their interests. It indicates that from their knowledge of astrology they are able to formulate a plan of mutual effort. The taken is given by interlacing the fingers of the right hand with those of the brother's left and placing the free hand on the hip. The united hands are at a level with the head. It indicates united transmutation from Scorpio to Aries, or the sun resurrected with the moon on the vernal equinox. Knights of the Ninth Arch
This degree revolves around a vision of Enoch in which he saw the letters of the Ineffable Name engraved upon a triangular plate of gold which was lowered into the bowels of the earth to the ninth arch. Later he and Methuselah built a Temple underground of nine arches and deposited. A facsimile of the plate on a pedestal of white in the ninth arch. He also built two pillars on a high mountain nearby; one of brass to withstand water, and the other marble to withstand fire. On the marble pillar he traced hieroglyphics disclosing the whereabouts of the golden plate; and on the pillar of brass he engraved the principles of geometry, or Masonry. This was before the flood. In clearing away the rubbish to rebuild the Temple the vault is discovered and the plate recovered in the same manner as the vault and Ark of the Covenant were found in the Royal Arch degree. This ninth arch is the lowest grade of actual adeptship, where the mysterious laws are fully revealed to the worthy neophyte. Enoch was the perfect man, representing the natural adepts of the golden age. Methuselah was his son who lived to great age, symbolizing those who through subsequent ages have been found worthy custodians of ancient wisdom and who have proceeded with the work outlined by the Ancient Masons. The Ineffable Name is the lowest grade of adeptship is represented as mounted on a white marble pedestal to indicate that understanding while in the body depends upon purity. The pillar marble on the high mountain is the physical means adopted by the Magi to preserve their knowledge for posterity such as monuments, sacred allegories, hieroglyphics, and the tarot. This marble pillar is said to have been destroyed by the flood, but a portion is extant as we find in the next degree. The pillar of brass was not destroyed; for it represents the records left in the astral world where is preserved all the wisdom of ancient days. The floods of religious emotionalism and sensualism may destroy the material records of the past, assisted by physical floods due to climatic changes, but neither are effectual to efface the records left by Enoch, the early spiritual adepts, on the brazen astral column.
Degree of Perfection
The degree of perfection is based upon the Twenty first Major Arcanum of the tarot. This pictures the Crown of the Magi, symbolizing the accomplishment of the great work and corresponding astrologically to the sun. The lodge is represented as a subterranean vault hung with red curtains. It symbolizes the earth from which the adept is departing, the red indicating generated energy. A part of Enoch's marble pillar, found among the ruins, is placed in the west. The Pillar of Beauty, or astral records, the Burning Bush, or divine fire, and the triangle of Enoch with the sacred Jod-He-Vau-He engraved upon it are in the east. When the members are not at work the lodge is lighted by the Burning Bush, and when they are at work they are lighted by twenty-four lights. Three are in the north is represent the monads evolution through the mineral, vegetable, and animal kingdoms; five are in the south to indicate that man is a fruit of material evolution; seven are in the west to symbolize man arriving at physical perfection through the application of the subjective laws of union; and nine3 are in the east to represent man's wisdom before he is permitted to enter the ninth arch. These twenty four lights correspond to the twenty four hours in which the earth completes one rotation on its axis and symbolize all the experiences necessary to man upon the physical earth. Also before each of the officers is a triangular white table, symbolizing the spiritual plane to which the adept is translated.
For the same reason, that is because it is meant to symbolize the voluntary completion of earthly experience, there can be only twenty-seven working members in a Grand Lodge of Perfection. These twenty- seven represent the twenty-seven days it takes the moon--symbol of the soul--to make a complete transit of zodiacal experience. The work of this degree is a recapitulation of preceding degrees, even as the adept ready to leave the physical plane goes carefully over his past, tabulating experiences for future reference. Here for the first time the candidate receives the true pronunciation of the Word as revealed to Enoch; for Enoch, representing the children of the golden age, walked with God and was not. That is, he was translated consciously without the process of death as we knew it. In the golden age when the cycle of life had been run tradition records that there was a gradual voluntary dissolution by which the soul liberated itself from the body and passed consciously to a higher realm. In those days there were neither phantom nor shades in our earth's etheric envelope. The adept who succeeds in accomplishing the great work while in the flesh understands the law governing translation and is able to pass to his future work in the spiritual world even as did Enoch, without being hampered by death or being detained in the astral worlds for experience and purification.
|The Brotherhood of Light
|Box 1525, Los Angeles, Calif.
Serial No. 17, Branch Letter -- L
Course IV. Branch of Science -- Ancient Masonry
Part XII. Ineffable Degrees.
1. What is symbolized by the ivory box containing all the Temple keys?
2. What is symbolized by the golden key?
3. What is symbolized by the coffin with a five-point star on the lid, and leaning over it a sprig of cassia?
4. What is symbolized by the pyramid in the north with the open compass upon it?
5. What is symbolized by a square bound to the forehead?
6. What is symbolized by the nine candelabras of nine lights each?
7. What is meant when it is asserted Enoch walked with God and was not?
8. What is symbolized by the five-point star with the case of mathematical instruments?
9. What is symbolized by the poinard at the feet of the sleeping assassin?
10. What is symbolized by the balance?
11. What is symbolized by a scroll with crossed swords?
12. What is symbolized by the letter J ?
13. What is symbolized by the square base of the pyramid and its four triangular sides?
14. What is the symbolical significance of the letter Z ?
15. What is symbolized by the pillar of brass bearing the records of Enoch?
16. What is symbolized by the Tau Cross, or English T ?
17. What is signified astrologically by Jubela and Jubelo being decapitated and their bellies cut open?
18. What is symbolized by the ebony box containing the plans for building the Temple?
19. What is symbolized by white gloves bordered by red?
20. What is represented by five candlesticks in the north and five candle sticks
21. What is the symbolism of an ivory key?
22. Why is the G.M.A. Chapter opened on the first instant, the first hour, the first day, and the first year when Solomon commenced the Temple?
23. What is symbolized by the Tau Cross, or English T, inverted?
24. What is symbolized by the five orders of architecture?
25. What is symbolized by the crown of laurel and olive leaves?
26. What is probably the origin of the York Rite of Modern Masonry?