Originally posted by Mundane Egg
I was wondering if someone could let me know what is the difference between Scottish Rite and York Rite?
When I first asked my dad this question years ago, he told me “Scottish Rite begins with ‘S’, York Rite begins with ‘Y’”.
The York Rite of Freemasonry is the Masonry based on the English tradition, while the Scottish Rite is based on the French tradition.
The York Rite is dated to at least the middle ages, and originally consisted of the first two degrees. The Third Degree was adopted in the early 18th
century, and these three compose what is now called the “Blue Lodge”, because, traditionally, Lodges of Masons were painted blue. Eventually, other
degrees were added.
Technically, “York Rite” refers to all of the degrees from Entered Apprentice to Knight Templar, but modern common usage usually refer to York Rite as
beginning with the degree of Mark Master. If this isn’t confusing enough, there is an exception, being the 16th Masonic District of Louisiana, whose
Blue Lodges work in the Scottish Rite, but are governed by the York Rite Grand Lodge.
To simplify the matter, you will receive three degrees in the Lodge: Entered Apprentice, Fellow Craft, and Master Mason. After this, you may apply for
the additional York Rite Degrees.
After the Lodge of Master Masons, the next step in the York Rite is the Chapter of Royal Arch Masons. The Chapter confers 4 degrees: Mark Master, Past
Master, Most Excellent Master, and Royal Arch Mason. After this, the next step is the Council of Cryptic Masons which confers two degrees: Royal
Master and Select Master (as well as a “side degree” called Super Excellent Master). Following this, if you are a Christian, you may join the
Commandery of Knights Templar, which confers three Orders of Chivalry: Illustrious Order of the Red Cross, Order of Malta, and Order of the Temple.
There are many “side degrees” and honorary degrees in the York Rite in addition to these. For more info, see www.yorkrite.com...
You also may want to join the Scottish Rite. Just as the York Rite consists of 4 bodies that control their own degrees (Lodge, Chapter, Council,
Commandery), the Scottish Rite consists of 5 bodies that control its 33 degrees.
The first Body of the Scottish Rite is the Lodge of Perfection, which controls the 1° - 14°. However, in English speaking countries, the Scottish Rite
recognizes the first three degrees of the York Rite, so the Lodge of Perfection actually begins with the 4°.
The second body (in the Southern Jurisdiction...it’s a bit different in the Northern Jurisdiction) is the Chapter of Rose Croix, which controls the
15°-18°. The third Body is the Council of Kadosh, which controls the 19°-30°. The fourth Body is the Consistory, which controls the 31° and 32°. And
the fifth Body is the Supreme Council, which controls the 33°. The 33° is administrative, and originally denoted only Sovereign Grand Inspectors
General (i.e., voting members of the Supreme Council). However, this was changed during the Pike Administration to allow the Supreme Council to confer
the 33° as an honorariam to Brethren, in recognition of service. These Brothers who have received the 33°, but are not SGIG’s, are called Inspectors
General Honorary, and are Honorary Members of the Supreme Council. They may attend all Supreme Council meetings (except the Executive Sessions), and
have a voice in its deliberations, but no vote.
The website of the Supreme Council 33° is www.srmason-sj.org...
[edit on 11-6-2004 by Masonic Light]