« הקודםהמשך »
confusion, observe the Senior Warden. ( The signs are given by all present and the J. W. reports.) Worshipful Master, the brethren present having proved themselves Master Masons, by signs, I, in obedience to your commands, demonstrate that proof to you, by copying their example.
W.M. And I acknowledge the correctness of those signs:Brother Junior Warden, from whence came you?
J. W. From the East.
W. M. Brother Senior Warden, whither are you directing your course?
S. W. Towards the West,
J. W. In search of that which was lost, which by your assistauce and our own endeavours, we hope to find.
W.M. Brother Senior Warden, what was that which was lost?
W. M. Brother Senior Warden, and where do you hope to find them?
S. W. With a centre.
J. W. A point within a circle, from which every part of the circumference is equally distant.
W. M. Brother Senior Warden, why with a centre ?
W. M. Brethren, I will assist you in your researches, and may heaven prosper our united endeavours.
P.M. So mote it be.
W. M. Breibren, in the name of the most high", I declare this lodge open on the centre, for the instruction and improvement of Master Masons. (The Master and Wardens then shout--ALL GLORY TO THE MOST HIGH, and make a sign. This is done by the Master thrice, by the Senior Warden twice, and by the Junior Warden once, sometimes by all present. The Master and Wardens give their three knocks and ihe lodge is considered open.)
FORM OF PASSING OR RAISING A MASTER MASON. (The lodge is first open in the second degree and thus addressed by the Masler.) Brethren, Brother Noodle is this evening a candidate to be raised to the third degree; but it is first requisite, that he should give proofs of proficiency in the former: I shall, therefore, proceed to put the necessary questions. (Noodle is
* What Mister Master Mason is the name of the most bigh? From what point do you mcasure? and docs your most bigb wbirl round with the cartb? If he docs not, bie must, at times, be most low.
xamined as to his proficiency in the former degree, by the r, and by any other member present, who chooses to ques
im; but generally reported that “ he will do.") W. M. Brother Noodle, you will come this way. Do you pledge your honour as a man and your fidelity as a Mason, that you will steadily persevere through the ceremony of being raised to the sublime degree of Master Mason?
Noodle. I do.
W. M. Do you likewise pledge yourself, that you will conceal what I shall now impart to you, with the same strict caution, as the other secrets in Masonry?
Noodle. I will.
W. M. Then I will intrust you with a test of merit, which is a pass-grip and a pass-word, leading to the degree into which you seek to be admitted. The pass-grip is given by a distinct pressure of the thumb between the joints of the middle and ring fingers. This demands a pass-word, which is TUBAL Cain, who was the first artificer in metal; and the import of the word is worldly possession. You will be particularly careful to remember this word, as, without it, you cannot gain admittance into a lodge, in a superior degree. (Noodle retires to be properly prepared, which is to have both of his arms, breasts and knees bare, and both heels slip shod. In the interim the lodge is opened in the third degree. The same ceremonies take place at the door, as in the former degrees, with the difference of the distinctive grip-word, knocks, &c. and the I. G. reports to the Master.)
I. G. Worshipful Master, Brother Noodle is at the door of the lodge, who has been regularly initiated into Masonry, passed the degree of a Fellow Craft, and has made such progress as he hopes will recommend him to be raised to the sublime degree of a Master Mason, for which ceremony he comes properly prepared.
W. M. How does he hope to obtain the privileges of the tbird degree?
I. G. By the help of God, the united aid of the square and compasses, and the benefit of a pass-word.
W. M. We acknowledge the powerful aid by which he seeks it, do you, Brother Inner Guard, vouch that he is in possession of that pass-word:
I. G. I do, Worshipful Master.
W. M. Then let him be admitted in due form. (He is then admitted.) Brother Deacons, let the candidate kneel while the blessing of heaven is invoked on our proceedings. (He kneels, and the Master prays.)
Almighty and Eternal God, the Architect and Ruler of the Universe, at whose creative fiat all things first were made: we, the frail creatures of thy providence, humbly, implore thee to pour down on this convocation assembled in ihy holy name, the continual dew of thy blessing: and especially, we beseech thee,
to impart thy grace to this thy servant, who offers himself a candidate, with such fortitude, that in the hour of trial, he fail not; but pass him safely under thy protection through the valley of the shadow of death, that he may finally arise from the tomb of transgression to shine as the stars for ever and ever. So mote it be.
W. M. The brethren will take notice, that Brother Noodle, who has been regularly initiated in Freemasonry, and has passed the degree of a Fellow Craft, is about to pass in view before them, to shew that he is properly prepared, to be raised to the third degree. (He is then conducted three times round the lodge by the Deacons. At the first time he shews the sign of the first degrees to the W. M: then the first sign with the grip to the J. W. At the second round, he shows the second sign to the W. M. and J. W. and communicates both sign and grip to the S. W. At the third round, he shews the second sign to the W. M. and J. W. and shows the sign and communicates the Master's pass-grip and pass-word to the S. W. by whom he is presented to the Master.)
S. W. Worshipful Master, I present to you Brother Noodle, a candidate properly prepared to be raised to the sublime degree of a Master Mason.
W. M. Brother Senior Warden, you will direct the Deacons to instruct the candidate to advance to the pedestal in due form.
S. W. Brother Deacons, it is the Worshipful Master's command, that you instruct the candidate to advance to the east in due form.
W.M. It is but fair to inform you, that a most serious trial of your fortitude and fidelity, as well as a most solemn obligation, await you, are you prepared to meet them as you ought?
Noodle. I am.
W.M. Then you will kneel on both knees, place both hands op the volume of the sacred law, repeat your name at length and say after me:
1, Doodle Noodle, in the presence of the most high, and of this worthy and worshipful lodge, duly constituted, regularly assembled and properly dedicated, of my own free will and accord, do hereby and hereon, most solomnly promise and swear that I will always hale, conceal, and never reveal, any or either of the secrets or mysteries of or belonging to the degree of a Master Mason, to any one in the world, unless it be to him or them, to whom the same may justly and lawfully belong, and not even to him or them, until after due trials, strict examination, or full conviction, that he or they are worthy of that confidence, or in the bosom of a Master Mason's Lodge, I further most solomnly engage, that I will the secrets of the third degree keep, from him who is but, a Fellow Craft Mason, with the same strict caution as I will those of the second degree, from him who is but an Entered Apprentice Mason : the same, or either of them,
from any one in the known world, unless to true and lawful brother Masons. I further solemnly engage myself to advance to the pedestal of the square and compasses, to answer and obey all lawful signs and summonses sent to me from a Master Mason's Lodge, if within the length of my Cable Tow, and to plead no excuse, except, sickness or the pressing emergency of my own private or public avocations. I furthermore solemnly pledge myself, to maintain and support the five points of fellowship, in act as well as in word : that my hand given to a Master Mason, shall be the sure pledge of brotherhood : that my foot shall traverse through danger and difficulties to unite with his in forming a column of mutual defence and safety : that the posture of my daily supplications shall remind me of his wants, and dispose my heart to succour his distresses and relieve his necessities, as far as may fairly be done without detriment to myself or connections : that my breast shall be the sacred repository of his secrets, when delivered to me as such; murder, treason, felony, and all other offences contrary to the law of God, or the ordinances of the realm, being at all times most specially excepted, or at my own option : and finally, that I will support a Master Mason's character, in his absence, as well as I would if he were present. I will not revile him myself, nor knowingly suffer others to do so ; but will boldly repel the slanderer of his good name and strictly respect the chastity of those who are most dear to him, in the persons of his wife, sister or his child; and that I will not knowingly have unlawful carnal connection with either of them. I furthermore solemnly vow and declare, that I will not defrand a Brother Master Mason, or see him defrauded of the most trilling amount, without giving him due and timely votice thereof; that I will also prefer a Brother Master Mason, in all my dealings, and recommend him to others, as much as lies in my power, so long as he shall continue to act honourably, honestly and faithfully towards me and others All these several points, I promise to observe, without equivocation or mental reservation of any kind, under no less a penalty on the violation of any of them, than to have my body severed in two, my bowels torn thereout and burnt to ashes in the centre, and those ashes scattered before the four cardinal points of heaven, so that no trace or remembrance of me shall be left among men, more particularly among Master Masons ; so help me God and keep me steadfast in this grand and solenn obligation, being that of a Master Mason.
After such a repetition of oaths as we have seen in the three degrees of masonry, it is evident, that ideas of assassination must be familar to the mind of every Mason, and these in the most disgusting forms. If evidence could be got, I should like to see the members of the Royal Family indicted, as members of an illegal association ; for that certainly must be illegality which
binds its members by such oaths, as these described as the oaths of masons; and that they are correct, as to tenour, I can bring the best of evidence ; though there is a slight variance in different lodges; and there has been a variance from time to time in the same lodges. Still, the most disgusting and immoral parts of the oaths have been rigidly preserved. If this association be not legislatively put down, after I have gone through this exposure, then every impartial minded man, who is aware of the late proceedings with respect to other associations, must feel the utmost contempt for the government of this country.
What is implied in the foregoing oath, in the vow that a Master Mason will not have unlawful carnal connection with the wife, sister, or daughter of another Mason? What, but that it is masonically legal, that he have unlawful carnal connection with the wife, sister or daughter of any other man? And, for my part, I would not place more confidence in a Mason upon this head, than upon another man, with respect to the wife, sister or daughter of a brother mason.
This is the morality of masonry, that you are required to observe stated rules of conduct towards every Mason, and are at liberty as a good Mason, to break through such rules with regard to every other person. For instance,
In the storm which ravaged this southern coast of England in November last, a Swedish merchant's vessel was cast ashore. A gentleman, standing by as a mere unconcerned spectator, was hailed by the Captain of the vessel with masonic signs. The gentleman was a mason, and instantly rushed to embrace the captain and to give him all possible aid, by taking him to his house, and by procuring all other possible aid for his crew and vessel. We are told, that the Swede, on returning to his own country, wrote a letter of thanks to the gentleman (all very proper), and the benefits of masonry were echoed, from this circumstance, through every newspaper published in England, Scotland and Ireland. But what a bad principle do we find involved in the circumstance? Is not the alternative clear, that, but for the masonic signs, the gentleman would have remained an unconcerned spectator, and have left the captain to right his crew and vessel as well as he could, without masonic assistance. This principle of brotherhood, which masonry teaches or enforces, should be extended to all mankind and not confined to a sect. This is the principle of sectarianism, that the members of one sect have no morality to practise towards the members of another sect.
The man, who can say, “ 80 help me God," to such an oath as this of the Master Mason, can feel no difficulty in saying, “ 80 help me God” in yowing the accomplishment of any vile purpose. Until he had publicly renounced his error and expressed his shame of such an oath, I would not value his oath or his word