By Giles Morgan
The realm of Freemasonry exerts a robust impact at the glossy mind's eye. to a couple they symbolize a strong and shadowy elite who've manipulated international background through the a long time, whereas to others they're an altogether extra mundane and benign fraternal association. This thorough reference explores the imprecise and unsure origins of Freemasonry and examines the validity of claims surrounding its early organization with the Temple of Solomon and the Knights Templar. It additionally explains the rituals and practices of Freemasonry, which were seen as variously vague, unnecessary, baffling, or even sinister. The ancient value of Masonry—including its position in colonial America—is additionally addressed besides its place and function in modern society.
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Extra resources for Freemasonry
King Herod also carried out work on the Temple until it was ﬁnally ﬁnished in 64 AD. Today the only part of the Temple of Solomon that still stands is the famous Wailing Wall which remains a site of pilgrimage and veneration. Hermes Trismegistus Two other ﬁgures from the ancient world whose inﬂuence looms large in the iconography and symbolism of Freemasonry are the man-god Hermes Trismegistus and the famous Greek philosopher and mathematician Pythagoras. It has been suggested that the roots of Freemasonry may lie in the culture of Ancient Egypt with its great traditions of temple building.
However, this contention was seriously challenged when a Swiss philologist called Isaac Casaubon examined the texts in 1614. Philology is the historical or comparative study of language and, when Casaubon scrutinised the Corpus Hermeticum, he concluded, on the basis of the style in which it was written, that it had actually been produced around the • 52 • THE TEMPLE OF SOLOMON first few centuries following the birth of Christ. Subsequent historians have largely supported Casaubon’s verdict on the approximate age of the texts.
The signiﬁcance of the compass is that, as an instrument, it is used to determine calculations to a high standard and thus it represents the role of the Supreme Being as the ultimate judge of mankind. The ceremony of becoming • 38 • T H E F E L L OW C R A F T A N D T H E M A S T E R M A S O N a Master Mason can be seen as representing the third phase of human life. The Entered Apprentice relates symbolically to childhood and beginnings and the Fellowcraft symbolises adulthood and ‘coming of age’.
Freemasonry by Giles Morgan