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Masons: what is the Roman Road?

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posted on Apr, 4 2008 @ 04:00 PM
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Hello all,

Longtime lurker, first-time thread starter. I've long enjoyed the more level-headed discourse on ATS regarding "secret societies" in general, and Freemasonry in particular. I think the resident Masons here do a fine job of explaining things about the organization and its tenets; this has been valuable to me in forming a balanced view of what the society is all about.

So here's my question: what is "the Roman Road," and what if anything does it have to do with Freemasonry?

I have read a bit about the society, and last night I had a fascinating conversation with a gentleman who is a member of the lodge in the small town where I live. He seemed impressed by what I did know about Masonry (much of which is thanks to this forum), and so he asked me if I knew about the aforementioned subject. I said in honesty that I didn't know anything about it. I was intrigued, and I'd like to be able to discuss it with him the next time I run into him.

I've googled it, and apart from a piece of scripture, I can't find out anything that would connect it with Masonry. Can any of you help me out here, with an explanation or references? I apologize in advance if this has already been discussed here and I've missed it, or if he's pulling my chain and I'm simply being gullible.

Cheers

articulus




posted on Apr, 4 2008 @ 09:54 PM
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Well, it's been nearly 6 hours without a reply articulus - thats a long time on ATS - and I think I might know why.

I have never personally heard of the phrase "Roman Road" in freemasonry, and I'm betting no-one else here has either (however whenever I say something like that I'm proven wrong so watch this space
). Typically round here when no-ones got anything to say, they generally don't. Except for me in this response here obviously.

You'll just have to bite the bullet and ask the guy directly what he meant. It might have some local meaning I guess. Or (and run with me on this one, as I'm making it up as I type) - Roman roads were straight so some allusion to keeping on the Straight and Narrow? - perhaps a Christian organization?

Really though I'm speculating. Which is a posh way of saying I'm guessing. Which is a slightly more down-market way of saying I haven't the faintest idea.

(Sound of regular ATS contributers mumbling "no change there then" and "at least he's honest" and "quite frankly I preferred him when he just gave one-line answers" and "oh yeah, T-man, has he been away or something?" )



posted on Apr, 4 2008 @ 10:05 PM
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Try to google (LA) VIA ROMANUS. I guess you'll find more then, but the pages would probably be in Latin or Italian.



posted on Apr, 5 2008 @ 12:53 AM
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I was going to guess it might have something to do with England, if he's talking about actual Roman roads. Seems there are quite a few of them in the UK, and Scotland being one of the areas most closely tied with the founding of Freemasonry... But I've never heard it mentioned in a Masonic context either.



posted on Apr, 5 2008 @ 02:05 AM
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Originally posted by articulus
I've googled it, and apart from a piece of scripture, I can't find out anything that would connect it with Masonry.


You might be right there. Perhaps the gentleman was trying to change the conversation to religious matters? I've also googled it with results I imagine, very similar to yours.

It does appear to be from the New Testament:


The Roman Road is a collection of verses in Paul’s Epistle to the Romans that offers a clear and structured path to Jesus Christ.

www.allaboutgod.com...


[edit on 5/4/08 by ConspiracyNut23]



posted on Apr, 5 2008 @ 06:53 AM
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Dont know if im on the right track here but here is my 10pence worth?

"Roman Road", well if the OP is suggesting that it may have something to do with England, then this may be of some importance...im just guessing here?

The United Grand Lodge of England is located at 60 Great Queens St, London,
Queens st, cuts through the City of London upto Kingsway.

The City of London (for those that dont know this is not the enitire area of London, just the City), this is often refered to as "the City ..or the SQUARE MILE ?

Originaly there was built a wall around the City, this is known today as London Wall, this wall was built by...the Romans

The boundaries of the City are marked by black bollards bearing the City's emblem, though at major entrances to the City (such as at Temple Bar on Fleet Street) a grander monument, with a dragon facing outwards, marks the boundary.

Something to think about ?




posted on Apr, 5 2008 @ 06:57 AM
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Originally posted by JoshNorton
I was going to guess it might have something to do with England, if he's talking about actual Roman roads. Seems there are quite a few of them in the UK, and Scotland being one of the areas most closely tied with the founding of Freemasonry... But I've never heard it mentioned in a Masonic context either.


I nearly mentioned this actually Josh as I was a member of Watling Street Royal Arch Chapter in England for a number of years. Watling Street is a well known roman road* and the Chapter is (obviously) named after it as it is located in a town built on it.

I think the OP is in the US though and clearly was not referencing my little stretch of Watling Street.

(*now called the A5, and all that the modern-day road building geniuses have achieved since the Romans is introduce a few hundred corners and on some stretches the average speed is down to that of a marching legionary wishing he was back home in sunny Italy).



posted on Apr, 5 2008 @ 11:04 PM
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Originally posted by ConspiracyNut23
It does appear to be from the New Testament:


The Roman Road is a collection of verses in Paul’s Epistle to the Romans that offers a clear and structured path to Jesus Christ.

www.allaboutgod.com...



I read Paul's Epistle to the Romans this morning (after reading the thread - its no coincidence
) and it is quite a 'strong' piece of writing, I could practically hear the preacher (I only have a King James bible and I found that when I was reading, my mind kind of gave it a Foghorn Leghorn twang...it has that kind of tempo, but that might be just me..anywho..)

articulus, I wonder if this gentleman is more interested in converting you to Jesus Christ than to the Freemasons or perhaps in establishing that you have a belief in a 'supreme being'??? I think your best bet is to ask him why he thought you might of heard of it...he seems like he's a interesting chap.

[edit on 6-4-2008 by KilgoreTrout]



posted on Apr, 6 2008 @ 04:26 PM
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Originally posted by Trinityman
Or (and run with me on this one, as I'm making it up as I type) - Roman roads were straight so some allusion to keeping on the Straight and Narrow?


I think you may have hit it on the head..this article was in the google search that CNut posted.

www.thefreemason.com...

Very last sentence

Save by the old Roman Road none attain the new. From the Ancient Hills alone we catch the view!


I'd be interested in your thoughts, it is different to many of the articles on Freemasonry that I have read, for want of a better word, it is quite emotional. It is a very good piece of writing, much of the articles I have read on Freemasonry have been quite sterile.

I like this...


Others see in it a symbol of the story of humanity, in its slow, fumbling march up out of savagery into the light of civilization; and it does lend itself to such a meaning. Often the race has seemed to be marching round and round, moving but making no progress; but that is only seeming. It does advance, in spite of the difficulties and obstructions in its path.


and this...


Nor do we walk with aimless feet, journeying nowhere, as the smart philosophers of our day tell us. It is not a futile quest in which we are engaged. And Masonry assures us that we are both guided and guarded by the Friend who knows the way and may be trusted to the end. Its promise is that the veils will be removed from our eyes and the truth made known to us, when we are ready and worthy to receive it. But, not until then!

It is a goodly teaching, tried by long ages and found to be wise and true. Alas, it is easily lost sight of and forgotten, and we need to learn it again and again. Here too, Masonry is a wise teacher; it repeats, line upon line, precept upon precept. In every degree it shows us the march of the soul around the Altar, and then beyond it up the winding, spiral stair, and still beyond into the light and joy of the Eternal Life.


The article is about the First Rite??? I can see therefore why it might also refer to the Romans verses in the Bible, as they are considered the path to Jesus Christ, would the First rite be considered the path to similiar mysteries?

It may be coincidence but I am still intrigued.



[edit on 6-4-2008 by KilgoreTrout]



posted on Apr, 6 2008 @ 05:07 PM
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To answer your question has probably nothing to do with freemasonry. In those days the roads were marked with milestones. The enslaved peoples were forced to carry roman packs and goods to provide relief on long marches. If you lived along the stone road you were expected to help till the next milestone.

He is referring to a path that has significant milestones that required work, possibly the degrees. Some one with study in this area could help more. I don't remember now but there were other funny little rules like that.



posted on Apr, 6 2008 @ 05:17 PM
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Originally posted by KilgoreTrout

...In every degree it shows us the march of the soul around the Altar, and then beyond it up the winding, spiral stair, and still beyond into the light and joy of the Eternal Life.


I found this especially interresting. The march of the soul around the altar. I know the altar to be the area in the close vicinity of 90 degrees north in the Northern hemisphere of heavens. The soul? Adam was the Son of Man (Ursa Major) and he was turned into a living soul (Genesis 2:7), i.e. a living constellation. In other words the constellations are our souls. I never knew the masons dared tell us this. They normally say they are not into astrology and would laugh and scoff at you if you implied they were into it.

The winding staircase is our DNA. There is supposed to be a light there too. This is beyond first rite, truely.

[edit on 6/4/2008 by Neo Christian Mystic]



posted on Apr, 6 2008 @ 09:24 PM
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Originally posted by Neo Christian Mystic
The winding staircase is our DNA. There is supposed to be a light there too. This is beyond first rite, truely.



I am just guessing but I think that given that the article was supposedly written in 1927 and the double-helix was not recognised as the 'shape' of DNA until the '50s that the author was simply referring to the geometrical form. As I said just guessing, but given the many references to geometry in the lectures this would make more sense. Didn't the rosicrucian use the spiral or double-helix as part of their imagary, I'm sure I have seen a picture of a spiral tower connected to Christian Rosicrux (or something or other).

I just googled it and this article came up

mill-valley.freemasonry.biz...

In particular...


In nature it may be observed in what is sometimes termed the Spiral of Life. From the imperceptible level of the double helix of the DNA [29] to the Milky-Way Galaxy, our nature unfolds her mystery as a golden proportion spiral: As below, so above. More readily we can observe in looking at life forms around us. Such living things as the scales of a pine cone, the seeds in a sun-flower, the spikes on a pine apple, or the arrangement of leaves on a rose stem and distribution of its petals [30] manifest this spiral of life, since no matter at what stage of life the plant is examined, its growth radiates in a logarithmic and equiangular spiral consistent with the golden proportion. [31] (Illustration 2.) Likewise the golden proportion is apparent in a nautilus shell, the arrangement of the scales on a fish, and in the proportions of limbs of man. [32] Even in observing the sides of our own hand uncurling from a clinched fist we can readily see the spiraling effect of the Golden Proportion. [33]


It gets very technical and mathematical after that, floating way over my head I am afraid...but I get the jist. Incidently I don't think any of the illustration work - I certainly can't see them


I don't think though that we are any nearer to establishing whether the Roman Road is significant in some way to Freemasonry.

The article quotes Paul's epistle to the Ephesians, is this the same Paul who spoke to Romans? I think he is the 'protaganist' in Corinthians also - not too sure on that though...is Paul considered significant to Freemasonry in anyway does anyone know? He definately seems, in all these writings, preoccupied with the 'mysteries'.

I'd be very grateful if someone could just clarify for me what the 'first rite' is or represents. Trinityman??? I haven't bothered you for a while, any insight...please.



posted on Apr, 7 2008 @ 04:35 AM
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Originally posted by KilgoreTrout

Originally posted by Neo Christian Mystic
The winding staircase is our DNA. There is supposed to be a light there too. This is beyond first rite, truely.



I am just guessing but I think that given that the article was supposedly written in 1927 and the double-helix was not recognised as the 'shape' of DNA until the '50s that the author was simply referring to the geometrical form.


Well, in ancient egypt you can see the double helix on the walls as hieroglyphs, and it means life as far as I can remember. I believe the discovery of the double helix was simply a rediscovery of something the ancient Egyptians and the Jews knew about. Like how there are 22 letters in the Hebrew alephbet. It's all about genetics, they share ancient tales speaking about the creation of different lifeforms, with Man as the ultimate.

It's only speculation on my behalf naturally, but it is my cincere belief that God exists and that he created our genome.

As for the spirals you refer to, they are 2D, flat and is related to phi or the golden measure, or one plus the root of five divided by two. This constant you can find all over the universe, from the number of leaves to a tree, to the spiralling seeds of a sunflower to the shape of some galaxies and so on. The easiest way to draw this spiral is through utilizing the Fibonacci sequence. -1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21 and so on. You get the next number in the sequence by adding the former number to the present. Officially this phi wasn't discovered until some Italian did in the Middle-Ages. However, the art of Egypt clearly shows that they knew about it. The Pythagoreans probably knew about it and many more.



posted on Apr, 7 2008 @ 06:22 AM
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Originally posted by Neo Christian Mystic
Well, in ancient egypt you can see the double helix on the walls as hieroglyphs, and it means life as far as I can remember. I believe the discovery of the double helix was simply a rediscovery of something the ancient Egyptians and the Jews knew about.


That's quite a claim, can you prove it? Why didn't the Hebrews or the Egyptians write about their knowledge of DNA? Don't you think that such a passage would've excited egyptologists?

To be fair, I am in no way an egyptologist, but I have a copy of the Egyptian Book of the Dead with the actual hieroglyphics and found the glyph I believe you are referring to.

I believe the glyph can be found on this page. (second image, top of second column)

It isn't translated to meaning "life" anywhere in the Book of the Dead. Is that the character you are referring to?

Why are speculating that ancient Egyptians and Hebrews had knowledge of DNA?

PS: We could U2U Byrd and ask her what she knows about this subject. She seems quite knowledgeable in these areas.


[edit on 7/4/08 by ConspiracyNut23]



posted on Apr, 7 2008 @ 06:49 AM
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The glyph I was refering to is the one you see towards the right of the first row, the two waves intersecting. As far as I can remember it alludes to the term life. We also have the classical symbol of the two serpents intertwining, from Greek and earlier traditions, often used as a symbol of medicine.

In Kabbalistic tradition we have a geometrical figure called the Tree of Life. You can construct this "Tree" by using a pair of compasses and a ruler. First you draw a line, then you draw four intersecting circles along the line. Here we have the four elements and the four proteins of DNA. This is the basis of the double helix when you construct it geometrically in 2D. You then make "compass-roses" according to a certain system and end up with eleven so called Sephirot, or main circles. In between these are lines connecting them in a special pattern. 22 lines connects the 11 sephirot. You can read more about it and see a stylised illustration showing the Sephirot Tree below:

Source

[edit on 7/4/2008 by Neo Christian Mystic]

[edit on 7/4/2008 by Neo Christian Mystic]



posted on Apr, 7 2008 @ 05:50 PM
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From what I can find that particular heiroglyth represents the 'h' sound or consonant. It is classed as a picture of rope, not sure of the relevence but thought I'd add that. As far as a symbolic meaning, I haven't a clue but I personally don't think it is a double helix. More of a twist?? It may be worth asking Byrd, I've read her posts in the Frobidden Egyptology thread and she's exceptionally well informed, she has a very broad knowledge base too, if anyone can clarify I would guess she can.

en.wikipedia.org...

I'm more drawn to the geometry though, this is where I find a direct relationship between the Operative and Speculative Masons. For that reason I would think that the writer is referring to the Golden Spiral or the Golden Ratio???

en.wikipedia.org...

www.bbc.co.uk...

Fibonacci's work was built upon the Egyptians development of fractional mathematics. So there is a continuation of ideas from East to West, from Egypt to Rome at least. I may be wrong but I think the pyramids themselves demonstrate the golden ratio...something about 3:4:5 or something like that..triangles and things (I am numerically dyslexic, I get the principle but not the maths!)

As far as its relevance to Freemasonry it could be from either influence, operative or speculative. The golden Ratio was very important in the renaissance, both in art and architecture, and it is this era that really spawned the more speculative freemasonry in my opinion. The opulence and decadence that spread from the creation of new world wealth in Europe eventually led to the Age of Reason and a new moral rationale. In this societal context, I think there is some element of Freemasonry as bringing men, not necessarily back to the church but to the morality of faith and the covenants of the Bible - which is why I am quite intrigued by the association with the Romans text and the Roman Road and the first rite. Demonstrates an element of design and helps to seperate the layers.

I am assuming that the first rite is the first degree, if anyone can correct me on that I'd be grateful.

www.bradford.ac.uk...

If this man that articulus knows was referring to the first lecture as the Roman Road I'd be very interested in knowing.



posted on Apr, 16 2008 @ 07:02 PM
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Thanks, all of you, for the thought you put into this. I certainly never would have got from the Roman Road to Christian Rosenkreutz to Fibonacci on my own. Very interesting ideas.

I lived in London for three years, and I'm well familiar with Great Queen Street and the Grand Lodge. There's a great pub across the street that serves excellent Thai food.
I also frequented the area around Mitre Square and the Temple Bar, and if memory serves, there are sites in that neighborhood associated with an old (Roman, obviously) temple of Mithras.

Anyway, I still haven't bumped into the gentleman in question again, but when I do, I'll put a few more questions to him. It wouldn't surprise me if, as was suggested, he may have been trying to simply get me to look into Christianity - I believe I mentioned in our conversation that I am agnostic.

Thanks again for your responses; I had a feeling posting here might lead to some interesting food for thought.



posted on Apr, 16 2008 @ 07:14 PM
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He's directing you to salvation through understanding various scriptures of pertinence known as 'The Roman Road.'
I found out about it shortly after I was a Christian.

The Roman Road



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