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Why must the Masons keep it a secret?

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posted on Jul, 19 2007 @ 10:45 PM
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IA, in light of your response, I keep flashing back to the stories of catastrophes that various religions reported happening to man in the distant past because they thought they could be like the gods. If there's any truth to this whatsoever AND there is a link between Masons and outsiders (I'm almost certain both can be answered in the affirmative), then the Masons are well justified in using secrecy to prevent repeats of these incidents in the past.




posted on Jul, 19 2007 @ 11:17 PM
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Originally posted by uberarcanist
IA, in light of your response, I keep flashing back to the stories of catastrophes that various religions reported happening to man in the distant past because they thought they could be like the gods. If there's any truth to this whatsoever AND there is a link between Masons and outsiders (I'm almost certain both can be answered in the affirmative), then the Masons are well justified in using secrecy to prevent repeats of these incidents in the past.


Don't you think for some to decide themselves who is or isn't worthy is in a way acting like they believe themselves as gods.



posted on Jul, 19 2007 @ 11:29 PM
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Not if they are acting according to the directives of the gods.



posted on Jul, 20 2007 @ 12:02 AM
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I think I've only looked up an actual Mason page online once, but I've read tons of other stuff that relates to them indirectly, like Rosyln Chapel etc.

And this is all just my opinion and those are a dime a dozen.

It all has to do with Gnostics and what they taught, forced underground by the Church. In my opinion the kicker is even though the Church labled people and texts heretical and had everyone else burn their books - the Church kept them and practiced them. Can I proove this? No. I doubt they would let me into their little library.Lol

If you don't know much about the Gnostic texts, alot of the focus is on reincarnation and everyone is subject to it unless you know what to say to the toll collector's during your escorted trip through the various levels of Heaven. Not only do you need to know what to say to these beings, there is also a sign that gets you past the 6th Heaven. It's all pretty creepy stuff with souls getting whipped and hurled back down to earth and the ultimate goal is to not have to reincarnate, but to go to the place of rest. Jesus is said to have said in the opening text of the Gnostic Gospel of Thomas - Let one who seeks, not stop seeking, until they find. Upon finding the person will be disturbed, and being disturbed he will marvel, then he will reign, and then rest.

It's all fascinating stuff and Gnosis really does come to those who seek.



[edit on 20-7-2007 by Myrtales Instinct]



posted on Jul, 20 2007 @ 12:30 AM
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Originally posted by Myrtales Instinct
If you don't know much about the Gnostic texts, alot of the focus is on reincarnation and everyone is subject to it unless you know what to say to the toll collector's during your escorted trip through the various levels of Heaven. Not only do you need to know what to say to these beings, there is also a sign that gets you past the 6th Heaven. It's all pretty creepy stuff with souls getting whipped and hurled back down to earth and the ultimate goal is to not have to reincarnate, but to go to the place of rest. Jesus is said to have said in the opening text of the Gnostic Gospel of Thomas - Let one who seeks, not stop seeking, until they find. Upon finding the person will be disturbed, and being disturbed he will marvel, then he will reign, and then rest.


Wow, I didn't realize that Gnosticism was THAT much different from mainstream Christianity. Hmmm, I'm gonna have to look into this some more. I suppose I'm lucky to be living in a time when the Gnostic texts and teachings are available to me even though I'm not a Freemason. Perhaps in a past life I was not given the opportunity to learn because I was also not a Freemason then...


[edit on 20/7/07 by an3rkist]



posted on Jul, 20 2007 @ 07:10 AM
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You guys are blowing this thing WAY out of proportion and making Masonry something it simply is not. The only reason there are secrets is because what happens in our Lodge Halls is our business. Those of you who were members of Greek Letter Fraternities in college; did you allow NON-Members to attend your initiations? If not, why not? Those of you in the corporate world, do you allow outsiders to sit in on Board of Directors Meetings? If not, why not?

Masonry doesn't withhold her secrets from the world, she OFFERS them...to those who approach her doors SEEKING it.

ALL of the lessons of Masonry are in print and available for ANYONE to read, if he or she but know what to look for. If anyone is interested in a list of books, let me know, else I won't waste more space here doing so. I have TONS of recommendations, as do, I'm sure the other Masons on this list.

As for secrets, etc. I offer the following. (Emphasis mine)


When Is A Man A Mason?

“When is a man a Mason? When he can look out over the rivers, the hills, and the far horizon with a profound sense of his own littleness in the vast scheme of things, and yet have faith, hope and courage—which is the root of every virtue. When he knows that down in his heart every man is as noble as himself, and seeks to know, to forgive, and to love his fellowmen.
When he knows how to sympathize with men in their sorrows, yea, even in their sins—knowing that each man fights a hard fight against many odds. When he has learned how to make friends and to keep them, and above all how to keep friends with himself. When he loves flowers, can hunt the birds without a gun, and feels the thrill of an old forgotten joy when he hears the laugh of a little child.
When he can be happy and high minded amid the meaner drudgeries of life. When star?crowned trees, and the glint of sunlight on flowing waters, subdue him like the thought of one much loved and long dead. When no voice of distress reaches his ears in vain, and no hand seeks his aid without response. When he finds good in every faith that helps any man to lay hold of divine things and sees majestic meanings in life, whatever the name of that faith may be. When he can look into a wayside puddle and see something beyond sin. When he knows how to pray, how to love, how to hope. When he has kept faith with himself, with his fellowman,
with his God; in his hand a sword for evil, in his heart a bit of song—glad to live, but not afraid to die!
Such a man has found the only real secret of Masonry, and the one which it is trying to give all the world.”

—Joseph Fort Newton


From the Monitor (Exoteric Ritual) of the Third or "Master Mason" Degree

My brother, you have been told that the secrets of Masonry are never to be written, and are only to be communicated from mouth to ear with one whom you know to be a Brother.

But I would impress upon you a more important thought; that the real secret of our fraternity, that secret which has been it's life's blood and inspiration throughout the ages, can also never be written. Nay, it can never be told, but it can be, and is, partially illustrated by an allegory of a beautiful and dramatic nature. Until you absorb the spirit of Masonry, it's forms and ceremonies will ever remain but a jumble of high sounding, more or less meaningless, words and phrases.

Some men are born Masons. That is, they live as Masonry teaches, never having passed through yonder doors. Others, though they may be carried upon the rolls of a lodge throughout a lifetime, and through some accident of circumstance receive the highest honor that our fraternity can bestow, still never become true Masons at heart.

Until you have learned that Masonry is the practice of the cardinal virtues of faith, hope and charity in your every day life, you too will have failed to grasp the true spirit of Masonry.

When you learn to have faith in the intrinsic goodness of mankind, even though at times it may seem warped, almost beyond human recognition . . . when you learn to have hope in the future, coupled with a determination to build in such a manner, that tomorrow will be better than today...and when you learn to have charity, not simply that charity of giving a portion of your substance to a less fortunate brother, but that greater charity of thought and action, which tends to lead you to view with tolerance and compassion the failings and shortcomings of your fellow-man, then and only then, can you appropriate to yourself the proud title of a Mason—a workman who need not be ashamed.

[edit on 20-7-2007 by Appak]



posted on Jul, 20 2007 @ 08:37 AM
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Originally posted by an3rkist
May I ask, since you didn't in fact tell me any specific knowledge or wisdom that is taught, (not that I would expect you to), if there are any specific books you recommend in this area?


Freemasonry, especially the Masonry of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, explores mankind's ideas in the areas of religion, ethics, political science, spirituality, and metaphysics from the dawn of man up to the present day. It is not an exaggeration to say that if one wants to reap the full benefits of Masonic wisdom, he should be well-grounded in academic pursuits such as history, mathematics, psychology, and philosophy.

Many Masons, including the author of the Scottish Rite rituals as used in the Southern Jurisdiction, have considered Masonry to be a system of transmitting the ideas of the Hermetic Kabalah. These doctrines are far too complex to get into here in-depth, but I can recommend a few books (see below), and will answer any specific questions as to them.



What exactly gives Freemasons the authority to say that a person is not worthy of a certain knowledge without going through certain initiations? I mean, it's all well and good that the knowledge is fairly available to all now, but the message this act is sending to me is that the Masons feel as if they have ownership of certain truths and that they get to decide who will be privy to those things. Is there any religious text, (i.e. scripture), that claims that only certain people should hear the truth? Shouldn't it be that the truth is what should lead people to live a virtuous life?


I would say the opposite: it is a virtuous life that leads people to the truth.

All should hear the teachings of morality. But before morality is put into practice, it is of no use for a person to take up higher spiritual pursuits. It would be no different to send a person to a university calculus class without having first taught him simple arithmetic.

As to Scripture references, there are several. For example, Christ warned hi Apostle to not "cast their pearls before swine". He also said, addressing the same Apostles, "To them, I speak in parables; to you, I speak openly".



And one last question, if you don't mind: Do you ever think that perhaps there are Masons in levels above you that have access to knowledge you do not? (I'm of course assuming there are "higher levels" above your own.)


No. There really aren't any "levels" in Masonry in that sense. To give you my own Masonic background, I am a Master Mason, and Past Master in my Lodge. In the Scottish Rite, I am a 32° member, and serve as Assistant Director of Work in Temple (which refers to staging the degree ceremonies). In the York Rite, I am a Royal Arch Mason, a Royal and Select Master, and Knight Templar. I am also Past Sovereign Master of my Council of Allied Masonic Degrees, belong to several other "side" and honorary bodies such as Knight Masons and York Rite College. I'm also a member of quite a few Masonic Research Societies, the Grand College of Rites of the Uited States, and was presented the Order of the Brotherhood of the Blue Forget-Me-Not in 2001 in recognition of my contributions to Masonic scholarship.


I say all this not to boast at all, but merely to illustrate where I'm coming from. I've made Masonry my life-long study, have dedicated countless hours to it, and consider it a very important thing.

Now, let me recommend a few books that illustrate the teachings of the Kabalah and Hermetic Science:

1. "The Golden Dawn" by Dr. F. Israel Regardie I cannot stress how important this book is to modern students of Hermeticism. It contains all of the initiation ceremonies, knowledge lectures, philosophical pieces, and practical workings of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, the outer Rosicrucian Society. It is a Hermetic Bible.

2. "Morals and Dogma of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry" by Albert Pike This book contains the Lectures of the Scottish Rite degrees, and traces the history and evolution of man's ideas concerning morality and religious dogma from the beginning of history to the present. It is indispensable for those who wish to study the Kabalah and Hermeticism from a strictly Masonic point of view.

3. "The Kybalion" by Three Initiates One of the "Three Initiates", and the principle author, was Dr. Paul Foster Case, a Scottish Rite Mason, former member of the Golden Dawn and O.T.O., and founder of Builders of the Adytum, a non-Masonic "School of the Mysteries", of which I am also a member.

4. "The Confessions of Aleister Crowley" by Aleister Crowley Practically all of Crowley's books were written for advanced students. This is one of the few that he directed toward the average "gentle reader". This autobiography is at different times entertaining, tragic, funny, sad, and weird. For example, he will be talking about his own ideas concerning the highest spiritual pursuits in the Kabalah, while a paragraph later he's giving us fishing tips.

5. "Magick Without Tears" by Aleister Crowley A collection of letters written by Crowley to various occult students. Get this one quick, as I hear it's going out of print.

These five books will give you an excellent background in the so-called "Secret Doctrine". In fact, if you actually acquire and seriously study these books, you will know more about the Kabalah and Hermetics than most Masons.


[edit on 20-7-2007 by Masonic Light]



posted on Jul, 20 2007 @ 08:58 AM
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Originally posted by interestedalways


Don't you think for some to decide themselves who is or isn't worthy is in a way acting like they believe themselves as gods.


I make no claims to High Adeptship and spiritual purity. However, even you and I, as mere fallible mortals, can still draw some of these distinctions.

For example, it is obvious to common sense that Gandhi is worthy instead of Hitler, Mother Teresa instead of Stalin, the Dalai Lama instead of Charles Manson.

As the Master hath said, By their fruits ye shall know them.



posted on Jul, 20 2007 @ 09:31 AM
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How come women aren't allowed within Freemasonry is it to do with the Kabbalistic Tree of Life and the three pillars? or am i way off



posted on Jul, 20 2007 @ 09:39 AM
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Originally posted by estar
How come women aren't allowed within Freemasonry is it to do with the Kabbalistic Tree of Life and the three pillars? or am i way off


Many people will give different answres. A lot of them will say that there were no female stonemasons in the old guilds from Freemasonry is the successor.

However, I think the reason is because that the actual Masonic ritual is a celebration of the male mysteries, similar to the solar mysteries practiced in ancient Egypt and Persia. This has led to some Masons instituting Masonic-related groups that celebrate female mysteries, such as the Order of the Eastern Star and Amaranth.


Cug

posted on Jul, 20 2007 @ 10:59 AM
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Originally posted by Masonic Light
5. "Magick Without Tears" by Aleister Crowley A collection of letters written by Crowley to various occult students. Get this one quick, as I hear it's going out of print.


Actually both of the Crowley books you mentioned are out of print. Magick without Tears is already fetching twice the cover price on the used market.



posted on Jul, 20 2007 @ 11:21 AM
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Well, first off I'd like to thank both Appak and ML for their contributions. It appears as those the questions I've asked have been answered, at the very least, in such a way that has opened new doors to things I may otherwise would never have stumbled upon. I would even venture to say that my original question was answered in large part to my satisfaction. I do have another thing to add though.


Originally posted by Masonic Light
For example, it is obvious to common sense that Gandhi is worthy instead of Hitler, Mother Teresa instead of Stalin, the Dalai Lama instead of Charles Manson.


See this is where you and I disagree, and perhaps it is because I'm coming from an atheistic point of view. I believe that all men, even the worst of the worst, are deserving of the truth. I believe that all truths are the sole property of all mankind, no matter how wicked they might be. I also disagree with the quotes you gave me from the Bible which argued your point. As an atheist and a person who believes the Bible to be drivel, I only asked if there were any scriptures about it so that I could try and understand from a Mason's point of view why they might think that practice is justified.

I'm still of the philosophy that no man is unworthy of the truth.



posted on Jul, 20 2007 @ 11:31 AM
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Originally posted by an3rkist


See this is where you and I disagree, and perhaps it is because I'm coming from an atheistic point of view. I believe that all men, even the worst of the worst, are deserving of the truth. I believe that all truths are the sole property of all mankind, no matter how wicked they might be. I also disagree with the quotes you gave me from the Bible which argued your point...I'm still of the philosophy that no man is unworthy of the truth.


I agree with your idea. I didn't mean that such persons were unworthy of the truth, only unworthy of initiation.

The truth is available to everyone, without exception. The important question in this regard is not if the truth is available, but what do they actually do with it?



posted on Jul, 20 2007 @ 12:16 PM
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Originally posted by Masonic Light
I didn't mean that such persons were unworthy of the truth, only unworthy of initiation.

The truth is available to everyone, without exception. The important question in this regard is not if the truth is available, but what do they actually do with it?


I guess this is where my "anarchistic" ideals come in. I don't believe in institutions that claim to know whether a person is worthy of them or not. It seems to me that many would argue that a person whose books you've recommended would not be worthy of these things. I speak, of course, of Aleister Crowley, who many refer to as the "wickedest man in the world". Now I suppose it's possible that this stigma was fathered by the Church or something, an organization which apparently has had quite the opposing view of Masonry in history, but for a man who referred to himself as "the Beast", it would be justified to say that he was not quite the most "righteous" person in the world, even from a Masonic standard. Now I'm not here to argue whether Crowley was worthy or not, but I'm interested in knowing exactly who or what is the standard whereby it's decided a person is worthy or not. I know that as an atheist I would not be considered worthy, but who or what says whether even a theist is worthy?


Cug

posted on Jul, 20 2007 @ 12:18 PM
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Originally posted by Masonic Light

3. "The Kybalion" by Three Initiates One of the "Three Initiates", and the principle author, was Dr. Paul Foster Case, a Scottish Rite Mason, former member of the Golden Dawn and O.T.O., and founder of Builders of the Adytum, a non-Masonic "School of the Mysteries", of which I am also a member.


I missed this on first reading. When was Case a member of the O.T.O.? I don't recall reading anything about this.



posted on Jul, 20 2007 @ 01:28 PM
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Originally posted by an3rkist


I guess this is where my "anarchistic" ideals come in. I don't believe in institutions that claim to know whether a person is worthy of them or not.


At least theoretically, it was never the institutions themselves that made such a call. The Theosophists talked about the "mahatmas" and "Secret Chiefs", which the Rosicrucians called "Adepts" and "Great White Brotherhood", and the Buddhists call "Bodhisattvas". These are the Holy Magi who have, through perseverance, cast off the dross of earth and guide the evolution of humanity. In other words, it's not Joe Blow down the street "calling the shots", but it is the Masters such as Jesus of Nazareth, Siddhartha the Buddha, Lao Tze, and the other Adepts who, by Grace of the Most High, assist in humanity's guiding. Consider the fact that all these Adepts, during their earthly ministries, called some Apostles to them, while rejecting others.

Some people are just naturally predisposed to take an interest in the occult and esoteric. Such have traditionally been referred to as the Elect. Eventually, even in spite of themselves, such people will find the Way.

Therefore, what I'm really saying is that an actual instituton or organization doesn't do any of this. In the end, it is Nature who will decide upon the question. She will unveil Herself to those She will, but remain a Mystery to others.

Mystery schools, including Masonry, symbolize all of these doctrines in their rituals of initiation. But it is important to undestand that just going through the rituals doesn't confer any special knowledge. The ritual symbolizes that which is necessary if one walks the Path of Return. It's what one does with this learning outside of the Lodge room that is important.

Nature, and not fallible men, will then determine who is worthy.


It seems to me that many would argue that a person whose books you've recommended would not be worthy of these things. I speak, of course, of Aleister Crowley, who many refer to as the "wickedest man in the world". Now I suppose it's possible that this stigma was fathered by the Church or something, an organization which apparently has had quite the opposing view of Masonry in history, but for a man who referred to himself as "the Beast", it would be justified to say that he was not quite the most "righteous" person in the world, even from a Masonic standard.


I recommend the two Crowley books to you because they both provide excellent insights on both the Kabalah and the Hermetic Sciences in a way that one who is not already familiar with such things can appreciate. As to what "many people think" about Crowley, one of the first things I learned when I began studying the occult is that "what most people think" and a dollar will get you a cup of coffee, but not much else.



Now I'm not here to argue whether Crowley was worthy or not, but I'm interested in knowing exactly who or what is the standard whereby it's decided a person is worthy or not.


While as an atheist you will no doubt reject my answer, I will have to say that such standards are not fully known by anyone, but are of divine origin.



I know that as an atheist I would not be considered worthy, but who or what says whether even a theist is worthy?


I would not say that an atheist is unworthy. An atheist cannot be initiated in the traditional manner because initiation is a theistic concept. However, the difference between atheism and theism exists only below what Hermetic Kabalists call the "Abyss", the Veil of Da'ath, which can be described as a certain level of spiritual consciousness. When one has attained to a more exalted consciousness, even if very briefly, the argument between atheism and theism becomes both irrelevant and unimportant. There have been many High Adepts who started out upon the Path as atheistic Buddhists.



posted on Jul, 20 2007 @ 01:41 PM
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Originally posted by Cug

I missed this on first reading. When was Case a member of the O.T.O.? I don't recall reading anything about this.


Case was a III° Master Magician. Most sources agree that he received the III° directly from Crowley. This source claims he received all three from Crowley.

Another source simply says: "Case had been a member of the Ordo Templi Orientis, advancing to the Third Degree (probably early 1917 to mid-1918); he received his OTO initiations from the Outer Head of the Order. He purportedly resigned from the OTO citing dissatisfaction."


Cug

posted on Jul, 20 2007 @ 03:29 PM
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Originally posted by Masonic Light
Case was a III° Master Magician. Most sources agree that he received the III° directly from Crowley. This source claims he received all three from Crowley.


Well I have my doubts as to the accuracy of those statements.

At that time Crowley was giving the VII° pretty freely. He (case) also published the papers on the tarot keys before that.. with something like that on your cv I'm sure Crowley would of not started him in the Man of Earth degrees.

Case went on to start his own order.. If Crowley would of personally known him, that would be cause for a rude limerick about Case somewhere.


What I think happened was someone confusing the Universal Brotherhood with the O.T.O. One of the U.B. members was Frater Achad, (Charles Stansfeld Jones) thus the confusion.

Sorry to the OP for going off-topic

[edit on 7/20/2007 by Cug]



posted on Jul, 21 2007 @ 03:41 PM
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In one of the BOTA curriculum documents, Case himself mentions a "brief affiliation" with O.T.O., or words to that effect, but gives no details. It is possible that Crowley would have given him the VII, or even the IX, but I cannot any specific documentation.

As for Jones in th UB, yes he and Case were members at the same time. Case later came to oppose to the UB, as well as the G.'.D.'. Enochian system, for reasons that to me seem absurd.



posted on Jul, 21 2007 @ 09:20 PM
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Originally posted by estar
How come women aren't allowed within Freemasonry is it to do with the Kabbalistic Tree of Life and the three pillars? or am i way off


The 100% truth of the matter is because girls have cooties and we don't want girl cooties.




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