BEHIND THE LODGE DOOR
Paul A. Fisher
Although Freemasonry operates secretly, there is a surprising amount of information available about its influence on society.
For example, an article in the New Age, in 1946, called attention to the following remark by former French premier Andre Tardieu, who died the previous year:
"Freemasonry does not explain everything; yet, if we leave it out of account, the history of our times is unintelligible:"
Masonic author and commentator Arthur E. Waite, writing about the 33rd degree of Freemasonry, said:
"It must be confessed that the whole scheme has a certain aspect of conspiracy continually presenting itself and as frequently eluding the mental grasp:"
In 1976, a book by Fred Zeller, former Grand Master of the Grand Orient of France, titled, Trois Points, C'est Tout (Three Points, That's All), revealed that between 1912 and 1971, all of the Third and much of the Fourth Republic of France was dominated by Freemasons, who fought two major anti-clerical reforms in a battle against Church influence.
And, in 1981, the world learned of the machinations of Grand Master Licio Gelli's Masonic Lodge known as Propaganda Due, or P-2, which precipitated the fall of the Italian Government that same year.
Despite that known background of Masonic intrigue, there continues to be a reluctance by the media and social commentators to expose Masonry's long history of working to subvert Church and State.
It is true the press did inform the public that Gelli's lodge included three Cabinet ministers, two under-secretaries, 30 members of Parliament, 70 top military officers, and a number of magistrates, civil servants, industrialists, university professors, policemen and journalists, among whom was the editor and publisher of one of the nation's most prestigious daily newspapers, Corriere della Sera.
The press also disclosed the financial machinations and tragedies surrounding bankers Roberto Calvi and Michele Sindona, including the former's strange death at Blackfriar's Bridge in London, and involement of the Vatican Bank with those two Masonic bankers.
However, the press gave virtually no attention to the larger picture, that is, the philosophy and activities of the Freemason Fraternity itself, of which P-2 was a progeny. Yet,it must be noted that Rupert Cornwell, Rome correspondent for the London Financial Times, does say in his book, God's Banker, which reports on the issue:
"As early as 1738 Pope Clement XII described freemasonry as `Satan's synagogue'."
And, the British journalist added, the Pope's fears "were well grounded."
The Financial Times correspondent characterized P-2 as a "a state within a state;" and "little short of a parallel state:" He also observed that Italy's late Fascist dictator, Benito Mussolini, had outlawed secret Masonic lodges.
Still, despite the mind-boggling reality of what this one Roman Masonic lodge had done by gaining allegiance of so many key government officials, industrialists, members of the academic commuity and others, it seems curious that background information concerning P-2's parent entity, the Masonic Fraternity itself, was ignored by the media. It seems curious, because Freemasonry, over the centuries, is known to have played a secret and extraordinary role in attempting to mold societies according to its tenets.
What Mussolini Found
However, Cornwell's references to Pope Clement XII and Mussolini do provide a clue as to what the world-wide Masonic Fraternity is all about.
In that regard, the New Age, in one of a series of articles in 1949, commented on Mussolini's closing of the lodges prior to World War II.
(The series was written, incidentally, upon the recommendation of Justice Robert H. Jackson, who at that time was a 32nd degree Mason, and had recently returned to the United States after having taken leave from the Supreme Court to serve as Chief Prosecutor at the Nuremberg War Crimes Trials).
The article said the Italian dictator was prompted to investigate Masonic lodges after he noticed many Socialist deputies and government employees "obeyed the orders of Freemasonry in preference to the orders of the Socialist Party:"
It should be noted that the Masonic cult "adhered to Fascism at the beginning;" and "officially was never hostile" to it until Il Duce prepared legislation against secret societies.
As a result of observing what he perceived as disloyalty among the Masons, Mussolini approved the appointment of a 15-member commission comprised "mostly of Senators and university professors;" who "unanimously advised the suppression" of the lodges because:
- Italian Freemasonry was "dominated by an anti-national state of mind:"
- The Craft obliged its members to "deny they are Masons," thus contributing to "corrupt the character of Italians:"
- Freemasonry used its hold upon the machinery of Government in favor of purely private interests and ambitions.
The report, in many ways, so strikingly similar to the Italian Government's findings in 1981, further stated:
"Freemasonry has penetrated into the most delicate organs of the national life, using as in lever the chief banking institutions. . . Its chief weapon is secrecy, which debases men's conscience, making them prone to intrigue and obliging them to submit to discipline against which they cannot rebel without breaking their vows: [this] forces them to maintain an internal solidarity which annuls or overcomes every other duty of loyalty or justice, and . . . insures inununity to any one who profits by it.
"When one thinks of the characteristics of Freemasonry which have been set down above, and especially its ties with similar organizations abroad, one realizes that the existence of Freemasonry is a phenomenon of such gravity that it seems unbelievable that the State has permitted it hitherto."
At that point, the article refers to a 1947 statement made by John Cowles, Grand Commander of the Scottish Rite of the Southern Jurisdiction, for the purpose of emphasizing the preeminent role played by Raoul V. Palermi, the former Grand Commander of Masonry in Italy who renounced the Fraternity and became friendly with Mussolini.
Cowles said ;
"In Italy, the regular Freemasonry stems as follows: Garibaldi, Ballori, Fera, Ricciardi, Burgess (Acting), and Palermi. The last named was head of both the Grand Lodge and the Supreme Council. He betrayed them both, proving a traitor, was expelled from Freemasonry, and later given a position under Mussolini . . "
Cowles then referred to the situation facing Masonry in Italy immediately following World War II, long after Mussolini had been executed. The post-War government, he noted, adopted a new constitution which included a provision (Article 14) prohibiting the existence of secret societies.
The fact that the Grand Commander of Italian Freemasonry was "given a position under Mussolini;" strongly indicates that Mussolini and his Commission had first hand evidence about the activities of Freemasonry.
Further, the fact that the new post-War government felt compelled to place a provision in the constitution banning secret societies gives credence to the findings of Mussolini's 15-member commission, and its fears about what such organizations can do to subvert a State.
However, Cowles noted that the new post-war Prime Minister, Alcide de Gasperi, a Christian Democrat, insisted that he did not view Freemasonry as a secret society, and would not war against it.
In retrospect, it appears that de Gasperi's naivete regarding the Masonic Fratemity in 1947 contributed to the P-2 scandal of 1981.
Church Exposes Masonry In 1738
Freemasonry, as we generally know it today, entered history when the Grand Lodge of England was established in 1717.
In 1723, Rev. James Anderson, an English divine, wrote his "New Constitutions" for the Craft, many parts of which were "lifted" from the works of Jan Amos Komensky (also known as Jan Amos Comenius), a 17th Century bishop of the Moravian Church. Anderson's "Constitutions" changed English Masonry from a more or less Christian orientation to "a universal creed based upon the Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of Man." This fundamental ideology of Komensky appealed at once "to freethinkers, to rationalists, and to lovers of magic and esoteric rites—to the love of mystery in myths, symbols and ceremonies."
Fifteen years later, in 1738, Pope Clement XII, as Rupert Cornwell observed, issued his Pontifical Constitution, In Eminenti. The Pontiff declared:
"We have resolved and decreed to condenm and forbid such [secret] societies, assemblies, reunions, conventions, aggregations or meetings, called either Freemasonic or known under some other denomination. We condemn and forbid them by this, our present constitution, which is to be considered valid forever.
"We commend to the faithful to abstain from intercourse with those societies…in order to avoid excommunication, which will be the penalty imposed upon all those contravening to this, our order, none except at the point of death, could be absolved of this sin, except by us or the then existing Roman Pontiff."
That, indeed, was a very severe indictment of blossoming Masonry, to have the Pope caution his international flock that membership in this new secret society was considered a "reserved sin;" absolution for which, except at the point of death, was reserved to the Holy Father personally. However, just thirteen years later, Pope Benedict XIV, in his Pontifical Constitution, Providas, reaffirmed Clement's censure of Masonry and similar secret societies. Moreover, since that time "more than 200" documents issued by the Vatican have condemned Masonry, although the "reserved sin" status was dispensed with by Pope Paul VI, and the Church began a rapprochement with the secret society in the 1940s. That aspect of Masonic-Catholic Church relationships will be discussed later.
Barruel And Robison's Revelations
The general public's first true insight into Freemasonry did not come until 81 years after the Fraternity's founding, when two books lifted the veil which so decorously had concealed the Craft's activities, except as had been exposed earlier by the Vatican and, occasionally, by heads of State.
One book was written by John Robison, a highly regarded professor of philosophy and a member of the Royal Society of Edinburg. The Scottish professor said he found Masonry on the Continent much different than he knew it in the Lodges of England. Continental Masonry, he wrote, exhibited "a strange mixture of mysticism, theosophy, cabalistic whim, real science, fanaticism and freethinking, both in religion and politics." He found, too, that although everything was expressed decently, "atheism, materialism, and discontent with civil subordination pervade the whole."
A more detailed expose of the Craft was set forth in a four-volume work by the Abbe Augusten de Barruel, a refugee from Revolutionary France, whose third volume was going to press just as Robison's book was being published.
Barruel charged that many years prior to the French Revolution, men who called themselves "philosophers," conspired against God of the Gospel, against Christianity, without distinction of worship. The grand object of the "conspiracy;" the Abbe asserted, was to overturn every altar where Christ was adored.
These philosophers, the Abbe asserted, formed the sophisters of rebellion, who joined with Freemasons—a group he characterized as having a "long history" of hatred for Christ and kings. Continuing, the French-born cleric said that from this coalition came the "Sophisters of Impiety and Anarchy," who conspired "against every religion, every government, against all civil society, and even against all property . . " This latter crowd became known as the llluminati, from which sprang the Jacobins.
Although this philosophy was believed to have been gestated in England, in reality, said the Abbe, it is "the error of every man who judges everything by the standard of his own reason, and rejects in all religious matters every authority that is not derived from the light of nature. It is the error of denying every possibility of any mystery beyond the limits of man's reason, and the discard of Revelation."
The leading "philosophers" of whom Barruel spoke were the major Encyclopedists: Voltaire, Frederick II, King of Prussia, Denis Diderot and Jean D'Alembert. These men, he asserted, "acted in concert" to destroy Christianity and, he declared, the proofs of the conspiracy are drawn from their writings.
The Abbe quoted Voltaire as saying: "I am weary of hearing people repeat that twelve men have been sufficient to establish Christianity, and I will prove that one man may suffice to overthrow it."
The French historian noted that the principal Encyclopedists had a secret language and, in that connection, he cited a letter from Voltaire to D'Alembert in which it is stated: "the vine of truth is well cultivated. Translated, the statement means: "We make amazing progress against religion."
Masonic sources, it should be noted, frequently have pointed out that most of the major actors among the Encyclopedists were Masons.
[In that regard, Robison and Barruel are cited rather extensively in the following paragraphs, in order to establish that what was attested to of Masonry in Europe in the 18th Century has been confirmed by Masonic sources as a substantially accurate representation of Freemasonry in America and Europe in the 20th Century.]
Barruel said he was invited to become a member of the lower grades of Masonry, and consented to take the first two degrees which were given to him outright and in a humorous vein.
However, the third degree ritual demanded unswerving obedience to the orders of the Grand Master, even though those orders might be contrary to the King, or any other sovereign. Despite not agreeing to so bind himself, Barruel received the degree of Master Mason
Those admitted to the first three degrees of Masonry, he explained, learn that Masonic and Christian eras do not coincide. For the Mason, the Year of Light begins at Creation, thus ante-dating Moses, the Prophets and Jesus Christ
He noted that many beliefs of Masonry are quite similar to the beliefs and practices of the Manachees, such as the "follies" of the Kabbalah and magic; indifference to all religion; the same terrible oaths; and symbols of sun, moon and stars used inside the lodges.
The French cleric described his own initiation and its attendant ceremonies and oaths. His accountt confirms that the Craft's degree and initiatory ceremonies of 1798 are almost identical to the Fraternity's practices today.
He said his own initiation gave him sufficient credibility to converse with those whom he know to be more advanced in Masonry, "and in many of these interviews it happened, that, notwithstanding all their secrecy, some unguarded expressions escaped the most zealous adepts, which threw light on the subject." Other Masons, he continued, lent him their books, "presuming that their obscureness and the want of essential words, or the method of discovering them, would baffle all my attempts to understand them."
With such understanding, he was able to learn the degree of Knight of the Rose Crucis, "or the Rosicrucians." The ornaments of the Lodge in that degree recall to the candidate "the solemn Mystery of Mount Calvary."
The Lodge room was draped in black with an altar prominently displayed, above which were three crosses. The middle one bore the inscription: "I.N.R.I."
"The brethren in sacerdotal vestments are seated on the ground in the most profound silence, resting their heads on their arms to represent their grief," Barruel wrote.
But, he said, it was "not the death of the Son of God, who died victim of our sins, that was the cause of their affliction." Rather, it was Christ's Crucifixion and the establishment of Christianity which moved the brethren to mourn loss of "the word, that is [their] pretended natural Religion…," which dates from that sacred Day.
This was evidenced in the ceremony, the Abbe said, by the response of the Senior Warden when he is asked the time of day by the Master of the Lodge. The Warden replied:
"It is the first hour of the day, the time when the veil of the temple was rent asunder, when darkness and consternation was spread over the earth, when the light was darkened, when the implements of Masonry were broken, when the flaming star disappeared, when the cubic stone was broken, when the word was lost."
Those revelations about the Philosophy and activities of Freemasonry were no less sensational than were the disclosures of Barruel and Robison regarding the Bavarian Order of llluminati. The Order was a secret society founded by Professor Adam Weishaupt of Ingolstadt, Germany, and records show it was closely intwined with Masonry. Members of the Order, Barruel found, were the secret Masters of Masonry.
Knowledge of the Order became public during search of a house occupied by one of the leaders, as well as by conununications discovered at the Castle of Sandersdorf, a meeting place of the group. Other information was made known by an unidentified spy within the Order, and by depositions given by four professors of the Marianen Academy in Bavaria, who were members of the Organization.
Weishaupt held views which, in later years, were echoed by the founding philosophers and adepts of international Conununism, as well as others. Weishaupt proclaimed:
"Liberty and Equality are the essential rights that man in his original and primitive perfection received from nature. Property struck the first blow at Equality; political society or Governments were the first dispossessors of Liberty: the supporters of Governments and Property are the religious and civil laws; therefore, to reinstate man in his primitive rights of Equality and Liberty, we must begin by destroying all Religion, all civil society and finish by the destruction of all Property."
According to Barruel, the doctrines of Illuminism came to Europe from Egypt through a Jutland merchant.
Although Weishaupt hated religion, above all the Catholic Church, he greatly admired the effectiveness of her religious orders—particularly the Jesuits—in spreading the Gospel throughout the world. "What these men have done for the altar and throne, why should I not do in opposition to the altar and throne," the Bavarian professor remarked.
Robison, referring to testimony of the four Marianen Academy professors, said the Order of Illuminati abjured Christianity; promoted sensual pleasures; considered suicide justifiable; viewed patriotism and loyalty to country as narrow-minded prejudices incompatible with universal benevolence; held private property a hindrance to happiness; and insisted that the goals of the Order were superior to all else.
Also, he observed, members of the Order could be found only in the Lodges of Masonry.
The Edinburg scholar said members of the group "insinuated themselves into all public offices, and particularly into the courts of justice."
Weishaupt told his followers: "We must win the common people in every corner. This will be obtained chiefly by means of the schools, and by open, hearty behavior. Show condescension, popularity, and toleration of their prejudices, which we at leisure shall root out and dispel."
Continuing in the same vein, he said: "If a writer publishes anything that attracts notice, and is in itself just but does not accord with our plan, we must endeavor to win him over-or decry him."
The strength of the Order of Illuminati, he said, lies in its concealment; let it never appear in any place in its own name, but always covered by another name and another occupation. None is fitter than the three lower degrees of Freemasonry.…
In addition to Masonry as a cover for Illuminati activities, Weishaupt recommended that members if the Order find concealment in "a learned or literary society" which "may be a powerful engine in our hands."
He taught his followers to try to obtain influence in all offices which have any effect in "forming or in managing, or even in directing the mind of man… "
All members of the Order, he said, "must be assisted…[and] preferred to all persons otherwise of equal merit."
The organization believed that Jesus established no new religion, but only "set religion and reason in their ancient rights."
Using the arcane language of Illuminism to explain his views on social conditions and the remedy for shaping society in the Order's mold, Weishaupt, in a letter to a colleague, referred to a "rough, split, and polished stone:' The differences were explained as characterizing the rough and split stones as man's condition under civil government: "rough by ever fretting inequality of condition; and split since we are no longer one family, and are further divided by differences of government, rank, property and religion." However, when these differences are eliminated, and peoples of the world are "reunited in one family, we are represented by the polished stone."
"Examine, read, think," Weishaupt admonished his devotees as he urged them to understand symbols and symbolic language used by the Order. Explaining, he instructed his followers: "There are many things which one cannot find out without a guide, nor ever learn without instructions…Your Superiors…know the true path-but will not point it out. Enough if they assist you in every approach to it." Thus, the need for the membership at large to "examine, read, think."
The new Illuminee was "particularly recommended to study the doctrine of the ancient Gnostics and Manichaens, which may lead him to many important discoveries on the real Masonry."
The Illuminati, Robision said, hoped to use women by hinting of their "emancipation from the tyranny of public opinion."
The great aim of the Order, said the Scotch scholar, "is to make men happy," by "making them good." This was to be accomplished by "enlightening the mind, and freeing it from the dominion of superstition and prejudice."
Robison also observed that Weishaupt was firm in the conviction that the Ancient Mysteries "were useful to mankind, containing rational doctrines of natural religion." Professor Renner, one of the Marianen Academy scholars who gave a written deposition about his knowledge of the Illuminati, said the Order bound adepts by subduing their minds "with the most magnificent promises, and assure…the protection of great personages ready to do everything for the advancement of its members at the recommendation of the Order."
The Order enticed into its lodges only those who could be useful: "Statesmen,…counsellors, secretaries…professors, abbes, preceptors, physicians, and apothecaries are always welcome candidates to the Order."
According to a joint deposition signed by Professor Renner and his three colleagues, the object of the first degrees of Illuminism was to train the adepts in the system of espionage. Once the member had so committed himself to such nefarious acts of espionage, treason, or other treacherous enterprises, he remained in a state of perpetual dread, fearing his superiors might at some time reveal the criminal activity, the four academicians testified.
The revelations of Robison and Barruel caused a sensation, not only in Europe, but in America, and were synopsized in newspapers and recommended for reading.
On December 4, 1794, The Herald of New York editorialized on the history of the French Revolution, and said that history was the history of "the Popular Societics, the principal moving springs of action during the whole revolution." The editorial urged owners of newspapers in the new nation to make the hisbry of those societies known, and recommended the works of Barruel and Robison.
Further evidence of the popularity of the works of Barruel and Robison in America was indicated when a Protestant minister, G.W. Snyder of Frederick, Maryland, sent to President George Washington a copy of Robison's book, with a covering letter,. He said the President should be familiar with many of the points made by the Scottish scholar, since Mr. Washington was himself a Mason.
The President responded by noting that he never had presided over any Masonic Lodge, and had visited such establishments very seldom. Further, he observed, he did not believe the Lodges in the United States were "contaminated" with the principles of Illuminism.
In a follow-up letter to Rev. Snyder, the President elaborated on his position and conceded that the doctrines of the Illuminism and Jacobins had indeed spread to the United States. No one, Mr. Washington said, "is more truly satisfied of this fact than I am."
Continuing, he said: " . . I did not believe that the Lodges of Freemasons in this country had, as societies, endeavored to propagate the diabolical tenets of the first [the Illuminati], or the pernicious principles of the latter [Jacobins] (if they are susceptible of separation). That individuals of them [Masonic Lodges] may have done it, or that the founder or instrument employed to found the Democratic Societies in the United States, may have had these objects; and actually had a separation of the People from their Government in view, is too evident to be questioned."
Freemasonry In Early America
The first Lodge of Freemasonry in America was established at Philadelphia in 1730, and claimed Benjamin Franklin as a member. Indeed, many leaders of the American Revolution, including Washington, were members of the Craft. That is not surprising, since many of them also were Deists, the forerunner to modern day Unitarianism.
Historian Paul Hazard observed that Deists believed there "must be no form of constraint." They found no need for priests, ministers, nor rabbis. No more sacraments, rites, nor ceremonies; no more fasting, mortifying the flesh; no more going to church or synagogue. The Bible, to Deists, was a book just like any other.
Deism, said Hazard, became devoted to the law of nature and free thinking; and upon the heels of Deism and Natural Religion, came Freemasonry.
Actually, Masons were most active in bringing about the Revolutionary War in America, according to the New Age. A 1940 editorial in that publication declared: "It was the Masons who brought on the war, and it was Masonic generals who carried it through to a successful conclusion. In fact, the famous Boston Tea Party, which precipitated the war, was actually a recessed meeting of a Masonic Lodge."
French historian Bernard Fay, writing of the Boston Tea Party, said the incident emanated from a tavern known as the "Green Dragon or the Arms of Freemasonry." A shabby band of "Redskins" were seen to leave the tavern on the afternoon of December 16, 1773, although no such persons had been seen to enter the building.
The group, reported Fay, rushed to the docks, jumped onto the ships anchored there, and threw tea into the harbor. The "Redskins" returned to the Green Dragon, but were never seen to leave.
Fay also said Benjamin Franklin established a "network of Masonic newspapers" in all the English colonies, one of the most prominent of which was Peter Zenger's Journal in New York.
Franklin, Fay wrote, utilized French Freemasons to aid the American Revolution. The American Revolutionary activist ingratiated himself to the widow of Claude Adrien Helvetius, the wealthy Encyclopedist, banker and atheist, who helped found the Lodge of Nine Muses—the intellectual center of French Freemasonry.
Through Madame Helvetius, Franklin was admitted to the Nine Muses and became Master of the Lodge. There he devoted himself to a propaganda campaign which swung French public opinion in favor of the American Masonic cause. Franklin's "admirable work," said Fay, was the most carefully planned and most efficiently organized propaganda ever accomplished, and "made possible the military intervention of France on the side of the Americans."
Moreover, he asserted, Franklin's work also had "a great intellectual influence throughout Europe, spreading the idea, or what might be called the myth, of virtuous revolution." Up until that time, the French historian said, revolutions had been viewed "as crimes against society." Subsequently, revolutions "were accepted as a step in progress of the world," a step and a perception which "originated with the American Revolution and grew out of Franklin's propaganda."
Legislatures Investigate U.S. Masonry
Despite the fact that Masonry was active in America since 1730, it was not until disclosures in "The Morgan Affair," almost 100 years later, that the American people became acutely aware of the Fraternity's "secret work."
When the public heard that one William Morgan, a Mason of Batavia, New York, allegedly had been murdered by members of the Craft for disclosing its secrets, the outcry was so vehement and widespread that thousands of the brethren resigned from the Fraternity. Legislatures of the States of New York, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania initiated investigations into the secret operations of Freemasonry, and developed testimony which was both amazing and frightening. The purported benevolent Fraternity was revealed to be a state within a state and bound its adherents with the most gruesome and terrifying oaths. In the national elections of 1830, the anti-Masonic political party mustered 130,000 votes.
The report of the New York State Senate Committee said of Freemasonry:
"It comprises men of rank, wealth, office and talents in power-and that almost in every place where power is of any importance-it comprises, among the other classes of the community, to the lowest, in large numbers, and capable of being directed by the efforts of others so as to to have the force of concert through the civilized world!
"They are distributed too, with the means of knowing each other, and the means of keeping secret, and the means of cooperating, in the desk, in the legislative hall, on the bench, in every gathering of men of business, in every party of pleasure, in every enterprise of government, in every domestic circle, in peace and in war, among its enemies and friends, in one place as well as another. So powerful, indeed, is it at this time, that it fears nothing from violence, either public or private, for it has every means to learn it in season, to counteract, defeat and punish it… "
The report noted that there were approximately 30,000 Freemasons in the State of New York—about one-fourth of the eligible voting population—"yet they have held for forty years, three-fourths" of all public offices in the State.
Commenting on a situation which has perdured through the years, the report addressed the attitude of the press, as follows:
"The public press, that mighty engine for good or for evil, has been, with a few honorable exceptions, silent as the grave. This self proclaimed sentinel of freedom, has felt the force of masonic influence, or has been smitten with the rod of its power."
The New York legislators said Masonic witnesses on the stand "have sworn to facts, which in the opinion of bystanders, were not credited by a single one of the hundreds of persons who were present." Moreover, grand juries, "a majority of whom were masons," omitted to find bills of indictment "when there was proof before them of outrages not surpassed in grossness and indecency by any committed in the country since the first settlement."
The committee also disclosed some of the oaths taken by Freemasons testified to by former Masons who recently had resigned from the Fraternity. Those providing such testimony were "personally known to a majority of the committee" as "men of standing in the community, whose characters for veracity are beyond reach of calumny."
Penalties accepted by Masons in the first three degrees were:
- Entered Apprentice: "To have his throat cut across, his tongue taken out by the roots, and his body buried in the ocean."
- Fellow Craft: "To have his left breast torn open, his heart and vitals taken from thence, and thrown over his left shoulder, and carried to the Valley of Jehosaphat, there to become a prey to the wild beasts of the field and the vultures of the air."
- Master Mason: "To have his body severed in two in the midst and divided to the north and south, his bowels burnt to ashes in the center, and the ashes scattered to the four winds of heaven."
- Royal Arch: "To have his skull struck off, and his brains exposed to the scorching rays of a meridian sun."
Much of the same information uncovered by the New York Senate in 1829, also was found five years later to be common in the State of Massachusetts, when a Joint Committee of the legislature of the latter State investigated the Craft.
Masons invited to appear before the Joint Committee refused to do so, and though the Massachusetts House approved subpoena power for the committee, the State Senate refused to do so.
The committee found Freemasonry was "a distinct Independent Government within our own Government, and beyond the control of the laws of the land by means of its secrecy, and the oaths and regulations which its subjects are bound to obey, under penalties of death." The committee added: "in no Masonic oath presented to the committee, is there any reservation made of the Constitution and the laws of the land."
The Joint Committee found Freemasonry to be a "moral evil," a "pecuniary evil," and a "political evil."
In 1836, a conunittee of the House of Representatives of the State of Pennsylvania was provided additional testimony which largely confirmed what the legislatures of the two other States had learned about Freemasonry.
The Pennsylvania panel was informed that a Master Mason promises under oath to protect the secrets of a brother Master Mason, "murder and treason only excepted, and those at my own option."
In all, nineteen witnesses refused to provide sworn testimony to the committee. Other witnesses informed the legislators that Masons influence judicial decisions and consider Masonic oaths superior to all other oaths.
Other Early Activities Of U.S. Masonry
But the State legislative committees never learned of numerous other activities of Masonry which remained virtually unknown to the public at large.
For example, members of the Craft overthrew the Spanish government of Baton Rouge, Louisiana in 1810 and ran up their own flag, a lone silver star on a field of blue, to establish their "newly created Republic of West Florida." The star represented the "five points of fellowship" under which the ringleaders of the rebellion held their meetings.
The Grand Lodge of Louisiana and its federated lodges plotted revolution in Mexico, and the Scottish lodges entered Mexico in 1813 for the express purpose of introducing the Constitution of Cadiz, a revolutionary statement of governing principles which contained numerous anti-ecclesiastical provisions.
Moreover, public officials in the United States were active in pressing Masonry upon the Mexican people. New York Governor Dewitt Clintan, in a letter, dated December 10, 1825, acting in his Masonic role as General Grand High Priest of the Royal Arch Masons in the United States, approved the request of Joel Poinsett to establish a chapter of the Royal Arch in Mexico. The letter further authorized Poinsett to establish other chapters of that discipline in South America. Poinsett, at that time, was the U.S. minister plenipotentiary to that country.
In 1835, Stephen Austin met in New Orleans "with 35 prominent members of the local Lodge of Freemasons, and planned the campaign which liberated Texas from Mexican rule."
Also, the Grand Lodges of Louisiana and Pennsylvania were busy chartering Masonic lodges in Mexico, and Poinsett used his considerable influence to have the Grand Lodge of New York charter the Grand Lodge of Mexico. The Mexican lodges virtually became the ruling political party of Mexico in the early 19th century.
But it is a strange irony of history that, despite the growing national awareness of Freemasonry's grave threat to Judeo-Christian beliefs and values—and to government itself—the American people allowed their attention to be diverted suddenly by a deceptive concern for what was perceived as a greater and more immediate menace: the Roman Catholic Church.
Before exploring that aspect of American history, it is important to understand the underlying philosophy of the Masonic Fraternity and the actions which flow from such belief.
THE MIND OF MASONRY
Earlier in this century, Father Hermann Gruber, S. J., a recognized authority on Freemasonry, carefully scrutinized the Masonic Fraternity on the basis of its numerous publications and reports. He found :
- The Masonic program coincides to an astonishing degree with the program of the French Revolution of 1789.
- The Craft fosters in its members, and through them in society at large, the spirit of innovation. It furnishes in critical times a shelter for conspiracy.
- Freemasonry propagates principles which, logically developed, are essentially revolutionary and serve as a basis for all kinds of revolutionary movements.
- The Scottish Rite system, which is propagated throughout the world, "may be considered as the revolutionary type of French Templar Masonry, fighting for the natural rights of man against religious and political despotism symbolized by the papal tiara and the royal crown."
- Treason and rebellion against civil authority are deemed only political crimes which do not affect the good standing of a Mason, nor do they result in the imposition of Masonic punishment.
- Symbolic formulae and symbols are used so the work of Masonry may not be hindered. The symbol of the Great Architect of the Universe and of the Bible are of the utmost importance to Masonry, since symbols are explained and accepted by each Mason according to his own understanding. The official organ of Italian Masonry emphasized that the Grand Architect may represent the revolutionary God of Mazzini, the Satan of Carducci, God as the fountain of love, or Satan the genius of the good, not of the bad. In reality, Italian Masonry, in these interpretations, adores the principle of Revolution.
The ultimate aim of the Craft, Fr. Gruber said, is the overthrow of all spiritual and political "tyranny" and class privileges, so that there will be established a universal social republic in which will reign the greatest possible individual liberty and sociai and economic equality.
To accomplish their goal, Masons believe the following is necessary :
- The destruction of all social influence by the Church and religion generally, either by open persecution or by so-called separation of Church and State.
- To laicize or secularize all public and private life and, above all, popular education.
- To systematically develop freedom of thought and conscience in school children, and protect them, so far as possible, against all disturbing influences of the Church, and even their own parents—by compulsion if necessary.
Fr. Gruber's study was written in 1913, but it is curiously evident that much of the Masonic program he outlined became manifest to the general public during the three decades Freemasons dominated the U.S. Supreme Court.
Certainly, the high bench has been militant in insisting that the First Amendment mandates a scrupulous "separation of Church and States." In that connection, the Court has said repeatedly that governmental funds can be provided only for education and related activities which are completely sectarian.
Surely, the Justices' approval for dispensing contraceptives to children without parental consent, and authorizing them to have abortions without the same consent, parallels Fr. Gruber's third point immediately above.
Of course, some may wish to dismiss the Jesuit's catalogue of Masonic chicanery as the views of an obedient priest written to affirm earlier findings of Popes, historians, and legislative investigating committees influenced by Christian values.
But the priest's analysis of the Craft cannot be cavalierly ignored, particularly in view of the unexpected tribute paid him by a prominent Masonic historian, Ossian Lang, in a report to the Grand Lodge of New York. Lang said: "A fine example of how the analytic mind of a scholarly non-Mason may discern the truth, may be found in the excellent article on Freemasonry contained in The Catholic Encyclopedia. The author of that article comes nearer to interpreting the history correctly of Freemasonry…than any Masonic writer whose publications have appearded in the English language… "
The View From The Lodge
Actually, Fr. Gruber's study, as well as the findings of Popes, historians and legislative committees, have been largely confirmed by members of the Craft itself. The fact is, a perusal of sixty years of writings in the authoritative New Age magazine leaves no doubt that Fr. Gruber and others of unimpeachable veracity have clearly explained the reality of the Masonic conspiracy to destroy Christian civilization.
A review of nearly two-thirds of a century of the official monthly journal of the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry of the Southern Jurisdiction—the rite to which so many Presidents of the United States, Justices of the Supreme Court and Members of Congress adhered—leaves one impressed by the consistent emphasis writers have given over the years to Albert Pike's Morals and Dogma, a book written in 1871 as a series of lectures, "specially intended to be read and studied by the Brethren of that obedience in connection with the Rituals and of the Degrees… ."
Pike's 861-page tome is described as "the basis for Masonic philosophy," and is given to each initiate into the Fourth Degree. Moreover, the book has been viewed by the Brethren as "a secret book…not for publication. In case a mason dies or otherwise leaves the Council, the book should be returned to the Supreme Council or else destroyed."
Certainly, such statements serve to convince the reader that Pike's book is a document of the highest importance to Scottish Rite Freemasonry. lndeed, it appears to be the very mind of Masonry.
The Introduction to the work, says the author was "about equally author and compiler; since he has extrackd quite half its contents" from others. Moreover, it is explained that Pike changed and remolded sentences of others, and added his own words and phrases to the statements of writers in order to "use them as if they were his own… ."
The official historian of the Scottish Rite of the Southern Jurisdiction, Clarles Lobinger, said Pike's book "swarms with citations from Eliphas Levi," author of Dogme et Rituel, and that Morals and Dogma "is shown to be literal and verbatim extractions from those of the French Magus."
Arthur Waite, a Masonic authority on, and translator of, Levi's works, has written:
"No person who is acquainted with Morals and Dogma can fail to trace the hand of the occultist therein and it is to be especially observed that, passing from grade to grade in the direction of the highest, this institution [Freemasonry] becomes more and more Kabbalistic."
Another Masonic writer insisted that reading Pike's work makes one feel "he is contacting one of the greatest minds," and that some day Pike will be recognized "as one of the greatest religious teachers and reformers of history… "
Another author, writing in the same publication, recognized Pike's book to be "tedious reading and even difficult to understand." He suggested that the volume be read slowly over a three-year period.
Continuing, the latter writer said the book is "a summation of those plilosophic and religious truths which are presented so graphically in the [degree] work," and he urged the study of Gnosticism and the Kabalah as collateral reading.
So it is made clear that Freemasonry is not fundamentally a fraternal insurance organization. It is an occult religion of Kabbalistic Gnosticsm, and Pike's book is the basic source document for brainwashing men in all degrees of Scottish Rite Masonry.
Pike's Morals and Dogma
Scottish Rite Masonry's Grand Philosopher and former Grand Commander wrote that the people, as a mass, are a "blind force," which must be "economized and managed" in order to attack "superstitions, despotism and prejudice." And once the people are organized and guided by "a brain and a law," and motivated by Truth and Love, "the great revolution prepared for by the ages will begin to march."
He said the force of the people becomes exhausted by prolonglng "things long since dead; in governing mankind by embalming old, dead tyrannies of Faith; restoring dilapidaded dogmas; re-gilding faded, worm-eaten shrines; whitening and rouging ancient and barren superstitions…perpetuating superannuated institutions; enforcing the worship of symbols as the actual means of salvation; and tying the dead corpse of the Past… with the living present."
"Pike compared the unorganized mass of people to a "Rough Ashlar" [building stone], and the organized and direct masses as a Perfect Ashlar." It is a concept that had been first enunciated by Adam Weishaupt to guide his Bavarian Illuminati, as was noted earlier in the preceding pages of the book the reader is now pursuing.
The Masonic leader identified Masonry with the Ancient Mysteries and star worship. The sun, moon and Master of the Lodge, he said, are the three sublime lights of Masonry. He characterized the Sun as the ancient symbol of the life-giving and generative power of the Deity. The Moon symbolizes the passive capacity of nature to produce (that is, the female of the species). The Master of Life "was" [emphasis added] the Supreme Deity, above both and manifested through both.
The Sun represents actual light, pours its fecunding rays upon the Moon, and both shed their light upon their offspring, the Blazing Star of Horus. The three form a great equilateral triangle in the center of which is the monific letter of the Kabbalah, by which creation is said to have been affected.
In addition to exciting interest among neophyte Masons in pagan religions (which had been almost abandoned with the triumph of Christianity in the Fourth Century, A.D.), Pike's book also presents Masonry as an organization which thrives on tension, conflict and revolution—a struggle apparently directed toward what Pike called "the great revolution prepared for by the ages," which would usher in the "universal social republic," mentioned by Fr. Gruber.
Lectures based on Pike's philosophy should immediately impress perceptive Masons that the tension, conflict and revolution referred to is the age-old pagan conflict with Christianity particularly the Roman Catholic Church. The alternating black and white squares on the Lodge floor Pike noted, serve to remind all Masons of that constant conflict. Those alternating blocks symbolize, he said, the "warfare of Michael and Satan; between light and darkness; freedom and despotism ; religious liberty and the arbitrary dogmas of a Church that thinks for its votaries, and whose, Pontiff claims to be infallible, and the decretals of its Councils to constitute gospel." Freemasonry, Pike said, owes its "success to opposition."
Pike made it abundantly evident that Masonry has nothing to do with Old and New Testament religious values. The Craft, he insisted, is the successor of the Ancient Mysteries, and teaches and preserves the cardinal tenets of the old primitive faith. All old religions "have died away and old faiths faded into oblivion;" but Masonry survives "teaching the same old truths as the Essenes taught and as John the Baptist preached in the desert."
Masonry's "same old truths," were gathered "from the ZendAvesta and the Vedos, from Plato and Pythagoras, from India, Persia, Phonecia, Greece, Egypt and the Holy Books of the Jews… These doctrines are the religion and philosophy of Masonry." Obviously, Masonic philosophy makes no room for Christian truths, ethics and values.
Elaborating on Masonic philosophy, Pike sald that while Christian Masons may believe the Divine Word became Man, others believe the same thing happened long before to Mithra and Osiris. Therefore, Christians should not object if others see in the Word of St. John what actualiy is the Logos of Plato or the Unuttered Thought of the first emanation of light or the Perfect Reason. "We do not admit that the Messiah was born in Bethlehem."
The "truths" propagated by Masonry, Pike wrote, are based upon Jewish mystical lore known as Kabbalistic Gnosticism. which was passed to Masonry through the Knights Templar.
Explaining, Pike said there existed at the time of the Templars a sect of "Johannite Christians, who claimed to be the only true initiates into the real mysteries" of the religion of Christ. Adopting in part the Jewish traditions and tales of the Talmud, they said facts recounted in the Gospels "are but allegories."
The Knights Templar, he continued, were from the very beginning "devoted to…opposition to the tiara of Rome and the crown of its Chiefs… "
The object of the Templars, he said, was to acquire influence and wealth, then to "intrigue and at need fight to establish the Johannite or Gnostic and Kabbalistic dogma… "
Again identifying Freemasonry with the Knights Templar, Pike declared: "The Papacy and rival monarchies…are sold and bought in these days, become corrupt, and tomorrow, perhaps, will destroy each other. All that will become the heritage of the Temple: the World will soon come to us for its Sovereigns and Pontiffs. We shall constitute the equilibrium of the universe, and be rulers over the masters of the world."
He said the Templars, like other secret societies, had two doctrines: One was concealed and reserved for the Masters, which was Johannism; the other, publicly practiced, was Roman Catholic. Thus, Freemasonry, he said, "vulgarly imagined to have begun with the Dionysian Architects or German Stone-workers, adopted St. John the Evangelist as one of its patrons, associating with him in order not to arouse the suspicion of Rome…[and] thus covertly proclaiming itself the child of the Kabbalah and Essenism together."
The Johannism of the Adepts, he added, "was the Kabbalah of the earlier Gnostics."
Referring to the trial of the Templars, (which lasted from 1307 to 1314, and involved charges that Templars denied Christ was God, abjured other basic Catholic beliefs, including the Sacraments, spat and urinated upon the Crucifix, and regularly engaged in homosexuality and other obscene acts), Pike said: Pope Clement V and Philip the Fair [of France] could not fully explain to the people at large "the conspiracy of the Templars against the Thrones and the Tiara. To do so would propagate the religion of Isis."
Jacques De Molay, Grand Master of the Knights Templar was executed in 1314. However, before he died, according to Pike, he instituted what came to be called the occult Hermetic or Scottish Masonry, the Lodges of which were established in four metropolitan areas, Naples, Edinburg, Stockholm, and Paris. These Lodges, Pike asserted, were the initial Lodges of modern Freemasonry.
The former Grand Commander of the Scottish Rite also asserted that the secret movers of the French Revolution had sworn upon the tomb of De Molay to overthrow Throne and Altar. Then, when King Louis XVI of France was executed , "half the work was done; thenceforward, the Army of the Temle was to direct all its efforts against the Pope."
The Church and Christianity are clearly the major enemies of Pike's Freemasonry. Christianity, he said, taught the doctrine of Fraternity, but repudiated that of political equality because it inculcated obedience to Caesar and to those lawfully in authority.
According to Pike, the Samaritan Jews, using Kabbalistic data, characterized the "vulgar faith" by the figure of Thartac, a god represented with a book, a clock, and the head of an ass. This was because they believed Christianity was under the reign of Thartac, since its adherents preferred "blind faith and utter credulity…to intelligence and science.
Concerning Heaven and Hell, Pike wrote: "The present is Masonry's scene of action—man is on earth to live, to enjoy. He is not in this world to hanker after another. The unseen can not hold a higher place in our affections than the seen," he declared, and added: Only those "who have a deep affection for this world will work for its amelioration."
Ascetism, said Pike, is "unnattural" and "moribund." Those whose affections are transferred to Heaven, easily acquiesce in the miseries of earth. "Those given most decidedly to spirital contemplation, and make religion rule their life are most apathetic toward improving this world's systems. They are conservators of evil and hostile to political and social reform."
The writings of the Apostoles, Pike said, were only "articles of the vulgar faith." The real mysteries of knowledge handed down from generation to generation by superior minds were the teachings of the Gnostics…and in them [we find] some of the ideas that form part of Masonry."
To Pike, Christ was not unique. The fundamental teachings concerning Jesus are commonly believed of Krishna, the Hindu Redeemer, he said. Born of a virgin, performing miracles, raising people from the dead. Krishna descended into Hell, rose again, ascended into Heaven, charged his disciples to teach doctrines and gave them a gift of miracles.
Speaking of the Catholic Church, Pike wrote: "By what right… does the savage, merciless, persecuting animal endeavor to delude itself that it is not an animal?"
In his commentary on the Council of Kadosh, Pike inferentially referred to the Holy Eucharist, and said:
The chief symbol of man's ultimate redemption is the fraternal supper of bread and wine. This fraternal meal teaches among other things "that many thousands who died before us might claim to be joint owners with ourselves of the particles that compose our mortal bodies, for matter ever forms new combinations: and the bodies of the ancient dead, the Patriarchs before and since the mood, the Kings and common people of all ages, resolved into their constituent elements, are carried upon the wind over all continents, and continually enter into and form part of the habitations of new souls creating new bonds of sympathy and brotherhood between each man that lives and all his race.
"And thus the bread we eat, and the wine we drink tonight may enter into and form part of us the identical particles of matter that once formed parts of the material bodies called Moses, Confucius, Plato, Socrates, or Jesus of Nazareth. In the truest sense we eat and drink the bodies of the dead...."
Over and over again, Morals and Dogma (MAD) emphasizes that Freemasonry is a religion based on the occult Jewish philosophy found in the Kabbalah.
The key to the true meaning of the symbols within the Temple is found in the occult philosophy of the Kabbalah, Pike said, and subsequently asserted that Masonry owes all its symbols and secrets to the Kabbalah.
"It is the province of Masonry to teach all truths, not moral truth alone, but political and philosophical, and even religious truth," he said. Masonry, he insisted is "the universal morality."
And again: "The religious faith…taught by Masonry is indispensable to the attainment of the great ends of life… " Pike proclaimed that "every Masonic Lodge is a temple of religion; and its teachings are instruction in religion… "
The Degree Rose Cross teaches "the ultimate defeat and extinction of evil and wrong and sorrow by a Redeemer or Messiah yet to come, if he has not already appeared."
Earlier commentators on Masonry have contended that Masonry is a State within the State. Morals and Dogma gives credence to that view by insisting that Masonry determines whether heads of State should stay in power.
"Edicts by a despotic power contrary to the Law of God or the Great Law of Nature, destructive of the inherent rights of man, and violative of the right of free thought, free speech, free conscience warrant lawful rebellion," he said. And, he noted, "resistance to power usurped is not merely a duty which man owes to himself and his neighbor, but a duty which he owes to his God."
If rulers have the Divine Right to govern, the true Masonic initiate will cheerfully obey, said Pike.
The problem faced by both rulers and people is to know who has a "Divine Right" to govern; and how much freedom is permitted for speech and conscience in a state before rebellion is warranted. Morals and Dogma strongly indicates that Masonry alone will make such determinations.
Pike also makes clear that those in the lower degrees of Masonry are "intentionally misled by false interpretions" of the symbols of the Craft. "It is not intended," he said that Masons in the Blue Degrees (the first three degrees) "shall understand them; but it is intended that [they] shall imagine" they do. The true explanations of the symbols are "reserved for the Adepts, the Princes of Masonry," he said.
Those are some highlights from a book that has been extolled in the New Age magazine for over 60 years as the plilosophic foundation upon which Scottish Rite Freemasonry stands. While many members of the Fraternity have found the book turgid and tedious, obviously many others look upon it as a great source of wisdom. In January, 1950, the Scottish Rite Committee on Publications reminded members of the Craft that they were "expected to be leaders and teachers of the people," and that the basic philosophy undergirding their efforts must be Morals and Dogma.
It can be little doubted that Pike had the pulse of Masonry. And long prior to publication of his opus, the Supreme Council of the Scottish Rite of the Southern Jurisdiction issued a circular which asserted: "Above the idea of country is the idea of humanity."
A Mason has written that Masonry exists the world over "and is susceptible of forming, at any moment, with its various Masonries, a homogenous bloc, or mass, pursuing a common ideal. That ideal is the emancipation of Humanity."
One well-informed non-Masonic student of the Craft said that to promote the Masonic concept of "the welfare of humanity" and elimination of "ignorance and prejudice" meant in practical terms Masonic attacks on altar and throne.
The same source also said the true purpose of Freemasonry is "the fall of all dogmas and the ruin of all churches."
The Grand Commander of Scottish Rite Masonry of the Southern Jurdisdiction revealed that Manuel Quezon, first President of the Philippines Senate and later the first President of the Philippine Commonwealth, declined to accept the "rank and dignity" of the 33rd degree of Freemasonry, because he "feared, some way, sometime, that there might be some obligation in accepting the honor which would be in conflict with his allegiance to the Philippines."
The only monument to a Confederate general in the nation's capital stands on public property between the U.S. Department of Labor Building and the city's Municipal Building on D Street, N.W., between Third and Fourth Streets. It is a statue of Albert Pike, the grand philosopher of Scottish Rite Masonry, who was indicted for treason for his activities during the Civil War.
Clad in a frock coat and weskit, wearing shoulder-length hair, the bewhiskered Pike is depicted holding in his left hand a volume of Morals and Dogma, his great Masonic treatise.
Chiseled into the statue's pedestal are words which purport to describe the man's abilities; poet, author, jurist, orator, philosopher, philanthropist, scholar and soldier. The sculpture gives no indication that Pike, as a Confederate general, was commander of a band of Indians who scalped and killed a number of Union soldiers during the Battle of Pea Ridge (Ark.).
Military records show that Indians at the Battle of Pea Ridge conducted warfare with "barbarity." Adjutant John W. Noble of the Third Iowa Regiment said: " . . from personal inspection…I discovered that eight of the men…had been scalped."
Adjutant Noble added that the bodies had been exhumed and many showed "unmistakable evidence" of having been "murdered after they were wounded."
First sergeant Daniel Bradbury swore he was present at the Battle on March 7, 1862 and saw Indians "doing as they pleased." The next day, he saw about 3,000 Indians "marching in good order under the command of Albert Pike."
In a letter, dated March 21, 1862, Pike was admonished by D.H. Maury, assistant Adjutant General of the Trans-Mississippi District "to restrain [Indians under his command] from committing any barbarities upon the wounded prisoners, or dead who may fall into their hands."
The New York Times reported that Pike had "seduced" the Indians into war paint.
Pike was born in Massachusetts in 1890, but moved to Arkansas as a young man where he became president of the State Council of the anti-Catholic American Party.
In 1861, Pike wrote a pamphlet "State or Province, Bond or Free," addressed to the people of Arkansas following Abraham Lincoln's election to the Presidency of the United States, but prior to his inauguration. In the pamphlet, Pike said the border States should at once "unite with the states that have seceded and are yet to secede, meet them in convention, and aid in framing a Constitution and setting on foot a Government."
Then, he continued, there will no longer be a few seceded States, "but a new and powerful confederacy, to attempt to coerce which would be a simple fatuity. A war against it would be too expensive a luxury for the North to indulge in, and would, moreover, defeat its own purpose."
Pike served as Commissioner to the Indians West of Arkansas in the Confederate States of America, and between July 10 and October 7, 1861 concluded Treaties of Friendship and Alliance with seven Indian nations on behalf of the Confederacy. The treaties gave certain tribes the unqualified right of admission as a State of the Confederacy and allowed each tribe a delegate in the Confederate Congress. However, President Jefferson Davis of the Confederacy urged that aspect of the treaties be deleted.
Subsequently, the Comanchees were "greatly astonished on being informed that they had made a treaty with enemies of the Government of their Great Father in Washington."
That history of Albert Pike is rarely, if ever, discussed by Masons. He remains to them "an outstanding man," a "great man, . . . a truly universal and creative genius,…an inexhaustible mine of inspiration, [and] a mental and spiritual giant."
Other Integral Characteristics of Masonry
There are other distasteful characteristics integral to Masonry which are little noted, but deserve mention.
Masonry's "Landmarks," have been described by a Craftsman as "those peculiar marks of distinction by which we are separated from the profane world, and by which we are enabled to designate our inheritance as the `Sons of light.' These landmarks are "unrepealable" and "can suffer no change."
Among such inflexible laws of Masonry is Landmark No. 18, which lists qualifications for membership in the Craft. That Landmark says no man can be a Freemason unless he is "unmutilated" and "free-born." It is further stipulated that neither women, slaves, nor one born in slavery, are qualified for initiation into the rites of the Masonic Fraternity.
In that connection, it is interesting to note that Albert Pike, writing of the Aryans who peopled the earth about 10,000 years ago, said:
"They were white men,…the superior race in intellect, in manliness, the governing race of the world, the conquering race of all other nations."
Continuing, he asserted: "The single fact that we owe not one single truth, not one idea in philosophy or religion to the Semitic race is, of itself, ample reward for years of study, and it is a fact indisputable, if I read the Veda and Zend Avesta alright."
The Veda is the collection of sacred writings of the Aryans who invaded Northern India in 1500 B.C. The Zend Avesta is a compilation of the sacred writings and commentary thereon of the Zoroastrian religion of ancient Persia.
In his Lectures on the Arya, Pike noted the Yima (first of all men created, and the first with whom Ahru Mazda conversed) ultimataly lived among people who had perfect stature and "no other marks which are the token of Anra-Mainyus, the Evil Principle, which he has made among men."
Regarding the "other marks," Pike said:
"By which it appears that deformity was considered as a mark put on man by the Evil One; and that Yima selected for his colonists only those in whom there was no physical defect."
Perhaps that Zoroastrian view is responsible for Masons permitting only the "unmutilated" to "colonize" lodges of the Craft, as required by the Fraternity's Landmark 18. Another example of Masonic prejudice was evidenced in a 1928 New Age review of a book, Reforging America by Dr. Lothrop Stoddard. The reviewer said the book's author "clearly demonstrates the necessity of America retaining its racial purity." The reviewer added: "The influence of Masonry upon the author's philosophy is evident throughout the volume."
Another article in the official journal of the Scottish Rite concerned the Indians of Mexico and purported to explain why so many revolutions have occurred in that country. The article said:
"The Indian, as such, is superstitious, immobile, a silhouette of stone. He breeds rapidly and would completely overrun the country and dominate by sheer force of numbers were it not for the fact that during each `revolution' hundreds of Indians are killed or die from disease.
"The Indian of today in Mexico is the `leftover', still native and Christian, God-fearing, a superstitious dominated being." [He is part of a structure of ignorance, slavery and servitude… under the domination of the Church, whose sole idea was to maintain this servitude and ignorance."
Commenting on the fact that Negro Masons have their own exclusive black Masonic organization, Grand Commander John Cowles explained that "most of the so-called colored Grand Lodges" trace their history to Prince Hall, a Negro who claimed that he was initiated in an English Army Lodge in Boston. Then the Grand Commander noted that "all regular Grand Lodges in the United States do not recognize any colored or Negro Masonry."
Cowles addressed the same subject in 1947, but said it is not "because of their color" that blacks are not allowed into the lodges of "regular" Masonry. Rather, it is "the general characteristics of the race as it exists in this country and the apparent incompatible social reaction of the two races."
The Grand Commander called attention to a photostatic copy of a joint letter in the files of the Supreme Council signed by the Grand Secretary of the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts and the Deputy of the Supreme Council of the Scottish Rite of the Northern Jurisdiction in Massachusetts, dated February 7, 1925, which allegedly says a black member was expelled from Freemasonry "on the technical ground that he had falsified as to the place of his birth; that…[he] had claimed to be an Indian, and that the Grand Lodge had evidence 'amply sufficient to prove that he was not an Indian at all, but a Negro, and other things to his discredit.'"
Cowles said that on one side of the photostatic copy of the Massachusetts Grand Secretary's letter appears the statement: "The Masons could not afford to admit that they had initiated a Negro, so he was expelled upon the technical ground of fraud in naming his birthplace."
In 1976, a Masonic afflliate organization for girls, the International Order of the Rainbow, suspended all Iowa chapters of the group because one local chapter endorsed membership of a 12-year-old black girl.
According to press reports, Michelle Palmer, whose father is white and mother is black, had been invited to join the Rainbow chapter in Indianola, Iowa, and was approved by the local assembly in October of that year. However, officials at the Rainbow's international headquarters at McAlester, Oklahoma ruled that all 136 Rainbow assemblies in Iowa must disband by the end of the year because they did not follow "rules and regulations."
It was explained that the organization took disciplinary action on the basis of an "unwritten law" which excludes blacks from membership.
Subsequently, it was reported that a majority of the nation's 61 Rainbow assemblies voted to drop the so-called "unwritten law" which banned Negro girls from Rainbow.
This Masonic racism persists to this day in both "regular" Masonry and Prince Hall Masonry, and the issue is rarely questioned in nominations to the judiciary or to other positions in government which require the strictest sense of fairness.
In 1979, The Washington Star carried an article by Robert Pear, the lead paragraph of which read: "Should a federal judge belong to a social club that excludes blacks—or women?"
The article went on to note that the question occurred with "embarrassing frequency" in connection with President Jimmy Carter's nominees for federal judgeships, because so many of the candidates belong to racially exclusive "social clubs, eating clubs or other fraternal organizations."
Pear wrote: "The issue of white-only private clubs haunted Attorney General Griffin B. Bell at his confirmation hearings in 1977. He agreed to resign from the Piedmont Driving Club and the Capital City Club in Atlanta because, he said, 'the attorney general is so symbolic of equal justice under the law.'"
Of course, even more the symbols of equal justice are the Justices of the Supreme Court of the United States.
The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People [NAACP] and the National Women's Political Caucus [NWPC], Pear observed in his Star article, "say judges should not belong to any clubs that discriminate on the basis of race, sex, religion or national origin."
Interestingly enough, On May 6, 1983, Vice President George Bush addressed the all-black Prince Hall Grand Masters of Masons, "at the invitation of Benjamin Hooks, president of the NAACP, and a Grand Mason secretary from Tennessee.
Adding insult to injury, the State Supreme Court of New Jersey decided in 1986 that a low-level State-court employee, must step down as an officer of a local NAACP chapter in order to avoid the appearance of judicial involvement in political disputes.
The State Supreme Court also ordered the Monmouth County Superior Court attendant in question to resign from a taxpayers' group, a local mental-health board and four other groups.
Earlier, the Maryland Senate enacted legislation to deny a tax exemption to Burning Tree Country Club because it discriminates against women. The amendment exempted the Masons, the Elks and the Moose, because they were considered "charitable organizations."
A careful reading of Masonic literature will make it evident that the Craft rejects God of the Scriptures.
The basic Masonic law requires initiates never be "a stupid atheist." But a knowledgeable Mason observed: "Let us not be deceived. All atheists are not stupid."
Pike, writing of atheism, said Nature is "self-originated, or always was and had been the cause of its own existence."
The test as to belief in God, he asserted, is whether the qualities exist, "regardless of what name is given these qualities."
Real atheism, he said, "is the denial of existance of any God, of the actuality of all possible ideas of God. It denies that there is any Mind, Intelligence or Ens that is the cause and Providence of the Universe… "
Joseph Fort Newton, one of the Fraternity's august theologians, declared: "To enter our Lodges a man must confess his faith in God—though he is not required definitely to define in what terms he thinks of God..."
Newton explained Masonic faith as follows: "Faith in the Universe as friendly to fraternal enterprise…[I]t affims…that man was made for man."
Another Masonic writer said: "man is divine, and his divinity is within himself." And yet another New Age writer declared: "When we talk to God we are taking to ourselves, for God and Man are one and the same through the ties of Love… "
Teacher of the World's Children
A previously noted quotation by Albert Pike, is important to recall. He said: "It is the province of Masonry to teach all truths, not moral truth alone, but political and philosophical, and even religious truth."
Indeed, shaping the minds of the world's youth has been an unremitting major activity of the Masonic Fraternity.
Historian Mildred Headings said the true purpose pursued by French Masons is "the fall of all dogmas and the ruin of all churches." She also noted that the Fraternity successfully campaigned in France to promote universal obligatory lay education and the use of school texts with Masonic values.
And what happened in France, has happened largely in America. In 1915, the Scottish Rite urged that graduates of American public schools be given "preference in every appointment to public office."
In 1920, during a special session held at Colorado Springs, Colorado, the Supreme Council of the Scottish Rite drew up a comprehensive education plan for the youth of the country. The plan called for sending all children through public schools for a certain number of years, and recommended the careful selection of school trustees and teachers, as well as supervisors of school textbooks and libraries in order to exclude "sectarian propaganda."
The Masonic plan also urged the establishment of "a national department of public education headed by a secretary appointed as a member of the President's Cabinet."
Almost immediately, the Craft's various journals propagandized in favor of the proposals which were generally embodied in legislation that through the 1920s and 30s was known as the Smith-Towner Bill, the Towner-Sterling Bill, and the Sterling-Reed Bill, reflecting the names of the Representatives and Senators who introduced the legislation.
In 1922, the State of Oregon, with Help of the Supreme Council and the Imperial Council of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine [the group so beloved for its children's hospitals and circus presentations], was successful in lobbying for the passage of legislation which outlawed Catholic and other parochial schools in the State.
The law was declared unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1925, in Pierce v. Society of Sisters, 268 U.S. 510.
The "the apostle of free, public schools," Horace Mann, was a Freemason, and, according to his wife, was an enthusiastic advocate of the philosophy of religion, a philosophy which was "scientific, humanitarian, ethical, [and] naturalistic… " Mann believed in "character education without `creeds,' and in phrenology as a basis for `scientific education.'" He held that "natural religion stands…preeminent over revealed religion . . ."
In 1930, a Masonic writer said: "In America, public education is the right and duty of the state…For the time may come… when by unchecked operation of biologic law, and other considerations, Catholics will be a majority in these United States . . "
Four years later, another New Age contributor boldly proclaimed: "The practical object of Masonry is the moral, intellectual and spiritual improvement of the individual and society."
But by 1935, the Masonic efforts to totally dominate the minds of American children had not come to fruition because, as a New Age editorial noted, eight of the 15 members of the House Committee on Education were Roman Catholics. That situation prompted the Scottish Rite journal to say; "Hence, so long as this condition exists in Congress there will be little opportunity for creating a Department of Education."
It is now apparent, that if that handful of Catholic members of the House Education Committee had not prevailed, and subsequently been succeeded by equally steadfast Catholic Congressmen and Senators into the very early 1960s, every public school child (including this writer) might have been propagandized with naturalism as the established national religion, long before the Masonically-dominated Supreme Court effectively imposed that curriculum on the nation's public school system when it outlawed Bible reading and school prayers in 1962 and 1963.
If the views of one Masonic writer are reasonably representative of the mind of Masonry, which they undoubtedly are, the likelihood of a Masonically-imposed naturalism on America's school children was clearly a possibility before mid-20th Century. The writer declared:
"The dramatic presentation of the 32nd degree of the Scottish Rite expresses a code of ethics which is essentially natural religion.…In this support of natural religion, Scottish Rite masonry presents an excellent example of what might be followed in our public schools…There can be no well-founded objection to the presentation of natural religion."
Another recommendation for public school children was that they should be taught the "balance between good and evil." Nine years later, the same theme was advanced in an editorial which called for strengthening "education for life…the knowledge of good and evil."
The official organ of the Scottish Rite of the Southern Jurisdiction published an article in 1959 which said every Mason becomes a teacher of "Masonic philosophy to the community," and the Craft is "the missionary of the new order—a Liberal order . . . in which Masons become high priests."
The article proclaimed that this "Masonic philosophy" which has brought forth a "New Order" had become a reality by "the establishment of the public school system, financed by the State, for the combined purpose of technological and sociological education of the mass of humanity, beginning at an early age in childhood."
At the same time, another Craftsman asserted that the Fraternity "provided the major obstacle" to the growth of religious-oriented education.
In 1968, a 33rd Degree Mason said: "The keynote of Masonic religious thinking is naturalism which sees all life and thought as ever developing and evolutionary… "
The Bible, said Brother Leonard Wenz, "is not today what it once was." Current higher criticism, he observed, has "made obsolete the idea that the Bibie is a unique revelation of supernatural truth."
While the Court has outlawed public recitation of the Bible as a religious work in public schools, the "Americanism" program of the Scottish Rite has mandated that members of the Fraternity disseminate Masonic materials in public schools. And the brethren take that role seriously.
In 1959, the Grand Commander said Franklin W. Patterson, 33rd Degree, secretary of the Scottish Rite Lodge at Baker, Oregon, succeeded in persuading the principal of the local high school to use Masonic-oriented texts in the local public schools. Also, the Scottish Rite bodies of Alexandria, Virginia "placed the New Age magazine in all public school libraries within their jurisdiction."
In 1964, Grand Commander Luther A. Smith reported that Masonic booklets had been "distributed by sets to every room in every school" in the Charlotte County, North Carolina public school system. The Superintendent of Schools for that jurisdiction made the Masonic propaganda "required reading."
In 1965, Major General Herman Nickerson, 33rd Degree, Commander of the U.S. Marine Corps faciiity at Camp Lejune, N.C., was commended by the Supreme Council for introducing the Supreme Council's books on "Americanism" into the schools under his command attended by children of Marine Corps personnel. In 1966, General Nickerson received an award from the Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge, PA., for "his citizenship program at Camp Lejune… ."
Subsequently, General Nickerson became Director of Personnel for the U. S. Marine Corps and on May 8, 1968 was the principal speaker when 17 West Point cadets "were obligated" as "soldier Masons," one month prior to being commissioned second lieutenants "to carry out our ideals in Viet Nam."
George Washington University in the nation's capital has long had close ties to Freemasonry, and has been the recipient of its largess. Not only did it receive $1 million from the Masons in the 1920s, it has received additional funds from the Masonic International "High Twelve Clubs," the Masons of Louisiana, the National League of Masonic Clubs, and the Knights Templar
When George Washington University restructured its Masonic funded School of Government in 1966, it consolidated the Department of Government and Business and existing programs "at the U.S. Air Force Command and Staff School, Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama, and the Industrial College of the Armed Forces (ICAF) at Ft. McNair, Washington, D.C."
The consolidation was effected only "after a conference was held with Grand Commander [Luther] Smith and his approval obtained."
The ICAF is the highest and most prestigious of all federal educational institutions.
Moreover, Masonic influence is threaded through most college fraternities, and their rituals were written and insignia designated by Masons. However, only four college fraternities were founded exclusively for Masons: Acacia, founded at the University of Michigan in 1904; Square and Compass, founded at Washington and Lee University in 1917; Sigma Mu Sigma, (Tri-State College, in 1921); and the Order of the Golden Key, founded at the University of Oklahoma in 1925.
In 1952, Square and Compass merged with Sigma Mu Sigma, "to thoroughly indoctrinate the college men of America with the traditions of our American Masonic heritage."
THE CRAFT AND THE KLAN
By the early 20th Century, attacks on Catholics had waned, and did not resume until shortly after Jews and Freemasons were singled out as threats to the nation.
First, it was charged in Congressional testimony that Jews were closely identified with Bolshevism and anarchism. Then, almost simultaneously, history's most distorted plagiarism, "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion," purported to reveal how Jews and Freemasons were conspiring to overthrow Christian Civilization as a prelude to joint world rule.
Prior to that bizarre imbroglio—which, it should be noted, never came close to exciting the hatred and bloodshed reserved for Catholics—the Church was gaining respect and adherents. Census data demonstrated that it accounted for over one-third of all religious denominations in the United States.
In 1911, President William Howard Taft remarked that membership in the Roman Catholic Church is "assurance" of patriotic citizenship. The following year, the President's sister-in-law, Mrs. H.W. Taft, was received into the Catholic Church.
The Klan Moves North
Three years later, Colonel William J. Simmons, an ardent admirer of the Ku Klux Klan of 1866-1869, under the leadership of Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest, re-established the Klan at Atlanta, Georgia in 1915, and called himself the Imperial Wizard.
According to a handbill he issued in 1917, titled "The ABC of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan;" [available in the Rare Book Division of the Library of Congress], the Klan advocated white supremacy, and was open only to "native born American citizens who believe in the tenets of the Christian religion." That viewpoint was strikingly similar to the philosophy of the Know-Nothings and the APA of previous periods.
A year earlier, it was apparent that a resuscitated Know-Nothing movement was taking nourishment in the North. The New York Times reported that a "secret oath-bound anti-Catholic order" (which refused to divulge its name) was operating in New York City as part of a nation-wide group organized specifically to oppose "political encroachments" by the Roman Catholic Church. The group's spokesman, Rev. William Hess, Pastor of Trinity Congregational Church, alleged that the Catholic Church intended to make the United States a "Catholic" country, and planned to "get control of the government."
Later that year, dissension arose in the organization's ranks and resulted in the New York adjunct separating itself from the national body.
Although the group was extremely reticent about publicity, one of its spokesman bragged to the Times that it had been sucessful in efforts to defeat Martin H. Glen, candidate for Governor in the Empire State in 1914, because "he represented the Jesuit element" in American politics.
In 1920, the Sons and Daughters of Washington, a group which bore an uncanny resemblance to the unidentified 1916 anti-Catholic organization, was formed in Brooklyn, New York to oppose Catholic political activities. It was characterized in the press as "a militant fighting organization for Protestantism,"
The august and powerful Times did not disagree with the goals of the Sons and Daughters of Washington, but faulted the organization for its egregious lack of tact. An editorial in that newspaper said the Sons and Daughters "show none of the discretion that characterized him whose name they have taken."
Hammering home the point, the Times said: "Only a minute fraction of it [i.e., discretion] would have enabled them to see that the war [World War I] is not yet remote enough to make attacks on the Knights of Columbus more than the forlonest of hopes. Our soldiers are under the impression that the Knights served them certainly as well as did any other agency of relief and support, and better than did several."
But Catholics were not the sole targets of hatred. Jews were singled out for attack during the period 1919-1921.
Opposition to Jews developed as pressure built up in the United States to support a Zionist nation in Palestine for Jews who had been displaced by the Russian Revolution and World War I. The issue split the Jewish community itself.
Congressman Julius Kahn of California, for examle, objected to President Woodrow Wison's endorsement of an independent Jewish state in Palestine, principally, the Congressman said, because it incites "the division of one's affiliation with the country in which he lives," and creates "a divided allegiance." Kahn also said he was opposed to Zionists because they "believe in the foundation of a government which shall embrace both Church and State."
At the same time, Rev. Dr. George S. Simons, who had been Superintendent of the Methodist Episcopal Church in Russia and Finland for the preceding 12 years, testified before a Senate committee investigating Bolshevism in 1919, and charged that chaotic conditions in Russia were due in large part to agitators from the east side of New York City who flocked to Russia immediately after the overthrow of the Czar.
The Methodist minister said that some of the New York people in Russia held high positions in the Bolshevist government, and that Bolshevists were responsible for wholesale murder of innocent civilians, outraging of young girls, and official starving of all who did not endorse Bolshevist teachings.
He identified those Bolshevists as "Yiddish agitators from the New York east side," and "apostate Jews, men who deny their God, and who have foresaken the religion and the teachings of their fathers."
His information was, he said, that 265 members of the Bolshevist Government "had come into Russia…from the east side of New York."
Rev. Simons also testified that "a large percentage of the Bolshevist agitators at work over here [the United States] are apostate Jews."
Two days later, Louis Marshall, President of the American Jewish Committee, testified before the Senate committee. He confirmed that some Bolshevists were apostate Jews, but complained that Rev Simons' Statement was damaging to other Jews who oppose Bolshevism.
In New York, Jewish leaders complained that two Episcopal Church clerics had charged that members of the Jewish race were in need of Americanization and Christianization. It was alleged that Rev. John L. Zacker told an Episcopal convention: "The Jews control the world, and if Christianity is to convert the Jews, it must be attempted at once." Rev. Thomas Burgess, Secretary of Christian Americanization of the Episcopal Church, replied that his Church's program was directed toward all "foreign born," including the "large number of Jews who have left the faith of their fathers."
A little over one year later, Rabbis Joseph Silverman and Samuel Schulman condenmed anti-Semitic attacks in various publications in the United States which were based on "The Protocols of the Wise Men of Zion." They said "The Protocols" allege that Jews and Freemasons "are in a great conspiracy to achieve world mastery." Among the publications cited by the Rabbis was auto magnate Henry Ford's Dearborn Independent, which had been serializing "The Protocols" for six months.
Dr. Silverman rightly pointed out that none of the publications furnished any evidence that an international secret political organization of Jews actually exists.
Continuing, he said anti-Semites "collect a few Jewish names, like Karl Marx, Bela Kun, Herezl, Trotzky and others, and call a few sentences of their writings, divorced from their contexts," to show that Jews "are individualists, Socialists, Bolsheviki, Zionists and what not, who care only for the overthrow of all Governments in order to establish their own."
But, he observed, such people ignore that fact that the Zionists, Socialists and Bolsheviki, "who happen to carry Jewish names, are only a handful in comparison to the great bulk of Jewish people throughout the world who are not only not in sympathy with Zionism, Socialism, Bolshevism, but who actually denounce these attempts at separate forms of government."
The Rabbi declared that there never would be a Jewish nation or a Jewish army or navy with which to dominate the world. "In no nation of the world is there a Jewish vote," Dr. Silverman asserted. Henry Ford was attacked repeatedly for his publication of "The Protocols." Editorializing against "The Protocols," the Times said they were "about the strangest jumble of crazy ideas that ever found its way into print."
The editorial added that "The Protocols" are of "unknown origin and accounted for only as having been put into the hands of the Russian Nilus by an unknown lady who obtained them in a mysterious way...
The Conference of Jews issued a public statement on November 30, 1920 condenming the "Protocols," and characterized them as "a mere recrudescence of medieval bigotry and stupidity."
Princess Catherine Radziwill, a Russian emigre writer who specialized in Russian and European matters, said she had seen the manuscript for the "Protocols" when it was being fabricated in 1884 by General Orgewsky, head of the Third Section of Police of the Russian State Department.
The General, she related, had sent agents to Paris to prepare the fake documentation which would show that the Jews were responsible for assassinating Alexander II, and "were planning a general conspiracy to destroy all the monarchies of the earth."
Continuing, she said the Czar's agents "searched old books, compiled citations from Jewish philosophers, and ransacked the records of the French Revolution for abstracts of the most inflammatory speeches."
As it turned out, the Princess's recollection appeared to be accurate.
On May 8, 1920, there appeared in The Times (London) an article "From A Correspondent" which called attention to a book, The Jewish Peril, Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion, by Professor S. Nilus. The correspondent called for an investigation of the book because it fostered "indiscriminate anti-Semitism . . . rampant in Eastern Europe," and "growing in France, England and America."
Fifteen months later, The Times' Constantinople correspondent reported that the "Protocols"—which purported to evidence a Jewish-Masonic conspiracy to destroy Christian Civilization by a universal revolution which would usher in Jewish world-rule—were a plagiarism. The newspaper article clearly demonstrated that Nilus's work was based largely on a book "Dialogue aux Enfers entre Machiavel et Montesquieu ou la Politique de Machiavel au XIX Siecle. [Dialogue in Hell between Machiavelli and Montesquieu, on the Politics of Machiavelli in the XIX Century].
The book, published at Brussels, Belgium in 1865, was authored by a person identified on the title page as "un Contemporain," but actually was Maurice Joly, a Parisian lawyer and publicist, who had been arrested by Napoleon III's police and sentenced to 18 months imprisonment.
The Brussels book was "a very thinly-veiled attack on the despotism of Napoleon III in the form of 26 dialogues divided into four parts," and the "Protocols" attributed to Nilus follow almost the identical order as the "Dialogues." of Joly.
While the book by the Russian mystic Sergi Nilus was shown conclusively to be a plagiarism, many people obviously insist on continuing the controversy, as is evidenced by approximately 100 books concerning the "Protocols" (pro and con), in several languages, listed in the card catalogue of the Library of Congress.
New York World Exposes Klan Anti-Catholicism
Exposure of the "Protocols" forgery pretty well ended serious anti-Semitism, although there were occasional attacks on Jews in such organs as The Searchlight, a Klan-influenced journal, which lashed out at "Jewish agitators" who were plotting a race war to destroy the Government, and to overthrow all the Gentile governments of the world."
But the motherlode which provided the Klan's enormous membership and great wealth was America's historic hatred of the Catholic Church. This was first evidenced in a series of 21 articles which began in the New York World on September 6, 1921, following three-months investigation of the Klan by that newspaper. The series simultaneously appeared in 17 other major dailies throughout the nation.
The first article in the series reported on the Klan's terrorism in the South, largely against Negroes. The Klan was exposed for having been involved in 21 tar and featherings; 25 beatings of individuals; 2 strippings and maltreatment of white women; 3 killings; and 18 warnings to prospective victims of Klan wrath.
The series also reproduced a copy of a bogus oath which the Klan said was the actual oath taken by Fourth Degree members of the Knight of Columbus. The bogus oath began:
"I _________, now in the presence of Almighty God, the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Blessed St. John the Baptist, the Holy Apostles, St. Peter and St. Paul,…and to you, my Ghostly Father, the superior general of the Society of Jesus,…declare and swear that His Holiness, the Pope…hath power to depose heretical kings, princes, States, Commonwealths and Governments, and they may be safely destroyed… :'
The fabricated oath further says the 4th Degree Knight will "wage relentless war, openly and secretly, against all heretics, Protestants and Masons…and that I will hang, burn, waste, boil, flay, strangle and bury alive those infamous heretics; rip up the stomachs and wombs of their women and crash their infants heads against the walls in order to annihilate their execrable race."
Continuing, the unbelievable document said the Knights would also wage war "secretly" using "the poisonous cup, the strangulation cord, the steel of the poinard, or the leaden bullet… "
Should the Knight prove false, the fake oath says he agrees to have his brethern "cut off my hands and feet and my throat from ear to ear, my belly opened and sulphur burned therein… "
The Knight then allegedly states that he will always prefer a Catholic to any other political candidate, especially a Mason.
Immediately following the fabricated text is a statement that the oath appeared in the Congressional Record on February 15, 1913 at page 3216.
The World also set forth the real oath taken by Fourth Degree' Knights, which is shown to be virtually the exact opposite of what the Klan libelously charged.
The true oath taken by members of the 4th Degree of the Knights of Columbus asserts:
"I swear to support the Constitution of the United Statea. I pledge myself, as as Catholic citizen and Knight of Columbus, to enlighten myself fully upon my duties as a citizen and to conscientiously perform such duties entirely in the interest of my country and regardless of all personal consequences."
The Knight further pledges to preserve "purity of the ballot" and to "promote reverence and respect for law and order," and to practice his religion openly and to exercise public virtue "as to reflect nothing but credit upon our Holy Church… "
Moreover, in 1914, the "entire work, ceremonies and pledges of the Knights of Columbus were submitted to a Masonic Committee of the 32nd and 33rd degree Masons in California." Afterward, the Committee issued a statement certifying that the Knights' oaths were "intended to teach and inculcate principles that lie at the foundation of every great religion and every great State."
The Masonic Committee further stated that the alleged oath "is scurrilous, wicked and libelous, and might be the invention of an impious and venomous mind."
Actually, anyone who was the least bit familiar with the solenm oaths taken by Masons would suspect that the bogus Knights of Columbus oath was written by a Mason. Such suspicion was well founded.
On September 18, 1927, an article in The Worid was headlined: "Bogus K. of C. Oath An Old Plagiarism."
The article said the bogus Fourth Degree K of C oath circulated by the Klan is nearly identical in wording to an "oath first used by the Paris Illuminati, as they were called in 1786—the name being changed to Adepts in 1772 and Freemasons in 1778."
Continuing, the article said: "It was delivered in a cellar, back of a house in Rue Vaugirard in Paris, first in 1772, in a lodge attended by Jean Jacques Rousseau…Prince Louis Philippe . . . Jean Paul Marat…John Paul Jones, Emanuel Swedenborg and other conspirators, and was dictated by the celebrated charlatan Cagliostro. . ."
The World article added: "The irony of the matter is that the K.K.K. assumes the oath to be of Roman Catholic origin and against the Masons, whereas it really is of Masonic origin against the Roman hierarchy and the French monarchy."
The series of articles also likened the Klan to the APA. One article was headlined: "Ku Klux Klan As Venomous As The Old APA." The report concerned the "virulent attacks on Catholics and their Church" used by the Klan in recruitment efforts, particularly a "Do You Know? card on which is listed such questions as:
"That a secret treaty made by him [the Pope] started World War I?…
"That he controls the daily and magazine press?
"That he denounces popular government as inherently vicious ...?
"That Knights of Columbus [members] declare they will make popery dominant in the U.S? "
The Klan's concern for the good name of Freemasonry hinted at Masonic influence in the Ku Klux Klan. Certainly the bogus K of C oath was shown to have been of 18th Century Masonic origin.
Therefore, it was ironic to learn that The World worried about the Klan's secret oath which demanded "unconditional obedience to the as yet unknown constitution and laws, regulations…of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan… "
The World also was disturbed by the "rigid secrecy" imposed upon Klan members "even in the face of death, in regard to any and all matters and knowledge" of the Klan.
The New York daily said it "has always in mind the potential danger to the United States from a secret organization bound together by such an oath,…and likely to draw into its ranks men of no regard for anything but the Ku Klux law and standards of conduct and ethics."
The Craft And The Klan
What The World deplored about the Klan's "rigid secrecy," and the danger to society of men binding themselves to solenm oaths to accept or commit possible actions in the future which they were totally ignorant of when they took their oaths, is precisely the danger the Catholic Church always has seen in Freemasonry.
Indeed, it is remarkable that after three-months investigation by one of the nation's major newspapers, the 21-part series made no mention of the close bond between the Klan and Freemasonry.
After all, most of the Klan's major leaders were Freemasons. The organization's founder, Col. Simmons was a Mason, and a Knight Templar. Also, C. Anderson Wright, King Kleagle of the New York Klan and chief of staff of a Klan group known as Knights of the Air, was a 32nd degree Mason. Dr. Hiram Evans, who succeeded Simmons as Imperial Wizard, "for many years…was recognized as one of the most active men in Masonry, and is a 32nd degree Knight Commander of the Court of Honor…[who] had been devoting almost his entire time to Scottish Rite Masonry at the time the Klan was organized… ."
Israel Zangwill, a prominent London author, said he was told by a Jewish rabbi that Dr. Evans inducted him into the 32nd degree of the Masonic order.
Further, initiations were held "in the Masonic Temple in New York City," and the Klan shared office space in Beumont, Texas "with the secretary of the Grotto, which, in a way, is a Masonic organization."
Edward Young Clarke, a former publicity agent and fund raiser, who became Imperial Kleagle (salesman) for the Klan "realized the value of representing the Klan to be `the fighting brother' of Masonry." Consequently, he issued orders that "none but men with Masonic affiliations" should be employed as Kleagles in the Klan's nationwide sales network.
Accordingly, he established the Great American Fraternity (GAF) in Georgia in 1920 as a nationwide sales organization composed of members of 13 secret societies believed to be hostile to the Catholic Church. Klan salesmen were instructed "in selling effective political anti-Catholicism to their brothers in their respective lodges."
Members of the GAF included the Freemasons, Junior Order of United American Mechanics, Independent Order of Odd Fellows, Guardians of Liberty, Order of the Eastern Star, Daughters of America, Rebekkahs, the Loyal Orange Institution, Knights of Luther, National Legion of Pathfinders, and the Order of De Molay.
Although some Masonic spokesmen condenmed the Klan, there were very few Masonic leaders who shared that view.
Charles P. Sweeney, writing in The Nation magazine in 1920, said if responsible Masons "exerted a tithe of the influence they possess, [they] could do more to stop the Know-Nothing program than any other single force."
Imperial Wizard Simmons denied the authenticity of a report that the Masonic leadership in Missouri had condemned the Klan in 1920. He said he had addressed 3,500 people in the Shrine Temple at St. Louis in September of that year, and learned that the alleged Masonic condenmation "has been strongly denied."
The Minneapolis Daily Star reported that most Klansmen in the city were Masons, while the State leaders included many popular Shriners.
In Wisconsin, the Klan leader was William Wiesemann, "a local insurance man who was prominent in Masonic circles."
Klan advertisements read: "Masons Preferred," and many Masons joined, as did a number of Milwaukee's Socialists.
A New York Klansman claimed that 75 percent of the Klan enrollment in that State were Masons.
In Oregon, both Fred L. Gifford, head of the Klan in that State, and his secretary, Frank Parker were Masons. Delegates of an Oregon Klan front, the Good Government League, were Masons, Orangemen, Odd Fellows and Pythians.
In 1924, an editorial in the Scottish Rite New Age magazine said the Rite holds "no brief for or against any organization outside of the Scottish Rite," and added the following observation: "If Freemasonry follows the traditions of centuries, it "cannot dictate to any Mason what shall or shall not be his affiliations outside the lodge… "
The editorial then invited attention to a letter by the editor of the Masonic Herald that appeared in The New York Times on August 28, 1923. The letter said "genuine Masons—Masons who are such in their hearts—cannot be Klansmen, and cannot welcome with true brotherly love Klansmen into their lodges."
Commenting on the Herald editor's letter, the New Age said: "Possibly the editor of the Masonic Herald is prejudiced, but no Masonic editor has any more right to speak pontifically for the Masonic fraternity than [a Catholic priest]."
An article in the same publication commented: "One may not subscribe to the Ku Klux Klan platforms in toto, but one may say of these and similar anti-Catholic movements…this fellow hath the right sow by the ear."
Although most decent citizens were outraged by the Klan's rampant bigotry, none of the Craft's Grand Lodges had taken "official action in regard to the Klan."
Nationally, "attacks on Masonry" in Italy "fired the Klan to renewed action and increased [its] membership"
The above history strongly indicates that the Klan was a Masonic front group. Certainly the Klan's venomous war on Catholics was in keeping with a long tradition generally associated with the Masonic fraternity.
The Klan in Action
In his article in The Nation, Charles Sweeney listed some of the terrorism and murders attributed to the Klan:
- A sheriff in Waco, Texas, who stopped a parade of masked men and demanded the names of the marchers was shot and removed from office in proceedings "sponsored by the most influential citizens of his county."
- In Birmingham, Alabama, a "Klansman" who killed a Catholic priest in cold blood on his own doorstep "was acquitted at the 'trial' amidst the plaudits of the mob."
- In Atlanta, Georgia, members of the Board of Education received letters threatening their lives when they hesitated to consider a resolution to dismiss all Catholic public school teachers.
- In Naperville, Illinois, a Catholic church was destroyed by fire two hours after a monster midnight Klan initiation in the neighborhood.
- Imperial Wizard Simmons made clear that the Klan had "given the world the open Bible, the little red school house, if you please, the great public school system."
The free publicity given to such a militant anti-Catholic organization by The World's widely publicized articles, coupled with Imperial Wizard Simmon's testimony before the House Rules Committee only served to advance the rapid growth of the Klan.
Simmons whetted the insatiable anti-Catholic appetite when he told the Committee there was available to the Klan "possibly the greatest existing mass of data and material against the Roman Catholics and Knights of Columbus." The material included "affidavits and other personal testimony attributing to the Roman Catholics and the Knights of Columbus in America more outrages and crimes than the Klan has ever been charged with."
Included in the material, he said, are charges of "murder, whipping, tar and feathers, and crimes of all natures."
At the time the House Rules Committee hearings were underway, Congressman William Upshaw, a supporter of the Klan, introduced a resolution to investigate "each and every secret order in the United States." Ten days later the Committee called off further investigation of the Klan.
Typical of Klan techniques in the North, in 1922, was an incident at Elizabeth, New Jersey. Five Klansmen marched into the Third Presbyterian Church and handed the pastor an envelope in which was enclosed a note and $25. The note expressed "appreciation "for the way the deacon's fund was administered by the church, and asserted that the Klan stood for "white supremacy, protection of women,…and separation of church and state."
Five days later, the church's pastor, Rev. Robert W. Mark, preached a sermon attacking the Knights of Columbus. He remarked that if he had to choose between joining the K of C and the Ku Klux Klan, he would select the Klan.
Rev. Mark said God intended the white race for leadership, but that he (Mark) did not advocate suppression of any race. With those words, he invited Rev. C.J. Turner, negro pastor of the Siloam Presbyterian Church, who was sitting in the front row, to join him on the platform. The two ministers stood side by side singing "America."
Cathophobia (or morbid fear and hatred of the Catholic Church) was rapidly spreading across the nation. In November, 1923, for example, Lowell Mellett, a nationally prominent journalist, writing in the prestigious Atlantic Monthly magazine, recalled stories circulated during his boyhood in Indiana which alleged that Catholic youths were trained "to seize the whole country." The same stories were rampant, he said, when he returned to his hometown 30 years later.
Mellett said the Klan was charged with being opposed to Jews, Negroes and Catholics; however, he had heard "little concerning Jews and Negroes," but "heard much concerning the Catholics." He added: Very clearly, the crux of the Klan problem in Indiana is the Catholic Church."
Some of Mellett's old friends, whom he characterized as "just some of the best citizens in Indiana," were Klansmen. They joined, he said, because they believed the Vatican "is soon to be moved to Washington, D.C.," and because they opposed the "fixed policy of the Church to keep its members down to a definite level of ignorance."
One of the most serious charges against the Church, he remarked, is that it "is endeavoring to obtain control of the public schools."
He charged that newspapers "have feared the Catholic Church," and agreed that was an article of Klan faith which "has a real basis."
Mellett's answer to the Klan's problem with the Church was to investigate, not the Klan nor other secret societies which were viciously attacking the Church and her adherents, but rather to investigate the Church. Catholic churches, he said should "be forced open" to prove or disprove allegations "of buried rifles and ammunition"
If adopted, that proposal, and a similar outrageous suggestion by Mellett, would have trampled the most basic religious and civil rights of Catholics.
His other suggestion was that a commission of inquiry be established to "call publicly for the presentation of every charge against the Catholic Church that any responsible person or group of persons might have to make, and then investigate the truth of these charges."
Nowhere in the article did Mellett furnish evidence to support wanton Klan charges. Presumably, this outrageous assault on the rights of citizens was warranted merely because a group of friends, "just some of the best citizens in Indiana" thought it would be nice.
Curiously, he never suggested an assault upon the Klan or Freemasonry. In fact, he explicitly said the Klan and secret societies should not be investigated. The reality was, however, that abundant evidence had been presented over the years which detailed the serious danger emanating from both the Klan and Freemasonry.
Indeed, in the same issue of the Atlantic Monthly in which Mellett's article appeared, there was a letter from "A Citizen of Oklahoma" who said the State was under the "secret rule of a hidden clique." He noted that the civil offices of the State "are unquestionably in the hands of the Klan; and that fact makes it impossible for the Governor to oust these officials."
In that regard, the unidentified letter writer observed that the Governor was being considered for impeachment by the Klan and its many sympathizers. The Klan, he remarked, "is the most dangerous force at large in the country today."
Strangely, however, Lowell Mellett was convinced that the Roman Catholic Church was far more dangerous than the Klan.
By 1925, the Klan was being widely accepted as American as apple pie. The Nation editorialized that the Klan "has become safe—and uninteresting."
On August 9, 1925, Imperial Wizard Hiram W. Evans led a march of some 25,000 Klansmen and Klanswomen down Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C., in "their greatest national demonstration and public show of strength," as 100,000 spectators cheered.
The "100 per cent Americans" knelt with heads bared at the Washington Monument to pledge allegiance to "one country, one language, one school and one flag."
Dr. A. H. Gulledge, national speaker for the Invisible Empire, advocated "race purity;' and said Klansmen would fight in order that "the State and Church be kept separate in America."
Continuing, he said Protestants intended to see that "they shall not press down upon the brow of Uncle Sam the thorny triple crown of a foreign potentate."
If the Nation is to survive, he added, "it cannot remain half free and half parochial schools."
Dr. Gulledge prophesized: "Not until the sun shall hide its face or the moon cease to shine or God resigns his throne in the heavens, or until the white race becomes mongrelized, will the Ku Klux Klan die."
It should be emphasized that these Klansmen and Klanswomen were not a bunch of stereotype Southern red-necks. These were militant anti-Catholic race supremists from Connecticut, Delaware, Michigan, New Jersey, New York and Ohio. Others were from Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas and West Virginia.
The following day, the leading daily in the nation's capital carried an editorial titled, "An Impressive Spectacle," which said the demonstration "may indicate" the Klan was "turning from the un-American principles of race and religious restriction and opposition that have been its most striking characteristic," and is now "seeking to render real and valuable service to the country."
The editorial said the march on Washington provided the Klan an opportunity "to make itself a force for good without belying the Americanism of which it bears the symbol."
It was evident the Klan was growing more powerful, a point made by William R. Pattangall, a Protestant, a Mason, former Attorney General of Maine, and that State's leading Democrat politician, who also was the Klan's "most distinguished victim."
Pattangall said "Catholics and aliens have borne the brunt" of the Klan's wrath. The Klan "menace," he said, "embraces the issue of religious freedom, the issue of preserving equal opportunity to all citizens, the issue of government by, of, and for all, rather than a part, of the people."
The Klan, he noted, said: "Lincoln was assassinated by order of the Pope, McKinley killed by a Catholic, and Harding was poisoned by the K of C." Further, "they [the Klan] solenmly read bogus statistics to prove that 90 percent of the deserters in the World War were Catholics acting under orders of the Church!"
The Maine Democrat said further: "The Klan seeks a secret hold on legislators, judges and other officials. It uses that hold to enforce its own demands…It…acts secretly in both parties, it tries constantly for control-secret control-of elections, legislatures and governments… "
Replying to Pattangall's article, Imperial Wizard Evans ignored most of the charges leveled by the former Maine Attorney General. Rather, Evans ranted against the Catholic Church which, he said, "has always opposed the fundamentel principle of liberty."
The Church, he declared, "is trying…to win control of the nation," and Catholic politicians attempt to bring the Church into politics. The Church, he went on, must show "that the need of intolerance against it has passed."
Although The New York Times suggested that the Klan was in decline in 1926, its own statistics demonstrated the nationwide Cathophope organization was quite robust.
The Times said there were 100,000 Klansmen in New York, who were "fairly vigorous." Principal strongholds were Suffolk and Nassau Counties on Long Island, as well as Westchester, Putnam, Dutchess, Rockland, Sullivan and Ulster Counties. The Klan also had "considerable influence" in Buffalo, and had influence on elections in Binghamton and Rochester.
A sampling of membership in the Klan in other States indicated that the organization was rather strong. There were 50,000 in Connecticut, 150,000 in Kansas, 150,000 in Missouri, 60,000 in New Jersey, and 250,000 in Ohio.
In Indiana, the public was scandalized to learn that D. C. Stephenson, former Grand Dragon of that State, was convicted of murdering a young woman and sentenced to life imprisonment.
Commenting on Stephenson, the Times said he "was the boss of the Republican Party in Indiana, and that through him the Klan was in control of offices and the process of government."
After the Klan extended itself to defeat Catholic Democratic Presidential candidate Alfred E. Smith it went into decline for two major reasons: first, the United States Supreme Court upheld the Constitutionality of a New York anti-Klan law which required the Klan to give publicity to its regulations, oaths and memberships; and second, the Great Depression, which began in 1929, made keeping or finding a job, and feeding the family, far more important than hating Catholics.
As it turned out, the 1928 general election proved to the Democratic Party that there was a "Catholic vote." Although Smith lost by 6.3 million popular votes to the Republican Herbert Hoover, the Catholic Democrat garnered 6.6 million more votes than did the 1924 Democratic standard bearer, John W. Davis. Smith also received 5.8 million more votes than did the 1920 Democratic Presidential candidate, James M. Cox.
Four years later, Franklin D. Roosevelt, with the crucial assistance of Catholic James E. Farley as Democratic Party Campaign Chairman, appealed to that Catholic vote and rode the Party to repeated victories during the next 16 years.
John F. Kennedy also appealed to that same constituency in 1960, and won a tightly contested election. Some political observers viewed that election as one of the most religiously intolerant political contests since the days of the Ku Klux Klan.
It is now time to assess the impact America's long history of anti-Catholicism has had on freedom of religion in this nation.
WARRING ON THE STATE
The idea that a relative handful of men have conspired for years to rule nations and the world according to their philosophy is difficult for many people to grasp.
Yet, most thoughtful people will concede that Hitler, Mussolini, Tojo and Stalin pursued that very idea and precipitated incalculable carnage.
Cecil Rhodes believed "the absorption of the greater portion of the world under our [English] rule simply means the end of all wars." To accomplish his goal of world domination under English rule, Rhodes drew up the first of six wills in which he stipulated that a secret society was to carry out his scheme. Later, he conceived of world domination in federation with the United States, using "a secret society gradually absorbing the wealth of the world." This plan is the "meaning of his last will and the plan behind his scholarships."
That secret organization envisioned by Rhodes became the Round Table Group of England, the "real founders of the Royal Institute of International Affairs…the Institute of Pacific Relations," and the "godfathers" of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR).
Communism has long been recognized as a separate secret conspiratorial movement to control the world. On the other hand, Christianity is a completely open, non-secret conspiracy to bring all men to salvation through Jesus Christ.
So what of Freemasonry?
One knowledgeable member of the Craft said: "The nature of Freemasonry and of its traditions is responsible for the difficulty the historian encounters in evaluating the influence which the Fraternity has exercised on the development of the Enlightenment…and all other progressive ideologies… "
The "nature" and "traditions" of Masonry refer to the Fraternity's secrecy. The great advantage of secrecy, in addition to advancing Masonry's cause, is that it permits Masons and their supporters to use no other argument than ridicule to dismiss charges that the Masonic Order subverts Church and State-charges which have consistently been brought against the Fraternity by various Popes and heads of states.
Secrecry, said Albert Pike, "is indispensable to Masonry."
In that connection, Masonry has 25 "landmarks," or canons which are "unrepealable," and can "never be changed." Landmark no. 23 concerns "secrecy of the Institution." It admonishes initiates that to change or abrogate such a requirement of confidentiality "would be social suicide, and death of the Order would follow its legalized exposure." Continuing, the same Landmark notes that Freemasonry has lived unchanged for centuries as a secret association, but as an open society, "it would not last for many years."
One wonders why the organization must be so secret. Why would openness bring "death of the Order"? Why would it "not last for many years" if its secret activities were unmasked? Certainly, that landmark suggests the Craft is something more than a fraternal and charitable organization. Why hide good works?
The answer is : Freemasonry in America and elsewhere is far more than a fraternal organization. It never hides its charitable endeavors. But its secret work, is something else entirely. And that secret work frequently has involved subversion of the existing political order in any given State.
In 1884, Pope Leo XIII declared that Freemasonry uses "every means of fraud or of audacity, to gain…entrance into every rank of the State as to seem to be almost its ruling power."
Just over 100 years later, an unsigned article appeared in the authoritative Vatican newspaper, L'Osservatore Romano, regarding Masonry. The article was described by an official of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith as a Vatican "policy position." It said Masonry was much more than an association of men of good will; that the Craft involves moral obligations for its members, a rigid discipline of mystery and a climate of secrecy that brings to members the risk of becoming the instruments of strategies unknown to them.
The hold of the Craft on initiates is almost total. One member of the Fraternity said Masonry is one of the few organizations that is "able to change the relationships created by nature," such as family relationships.
To "produce the desired result," Masons must take vows and make "a complete surrender" to the Masonic institution. "…there can be no reservations" to the new league.
Freemasonry, another Craftsman observed, "is—and must be—a political force…the whole spirit of the Order, and especially of the Scottish Rite, is a propulsion to political action."
One Grand Commander commenting favorably on Masonic support for revolutions in different parts of the world noted:
"They were charged in the Lodges with teachings that enabled them to become individual champions of democratic progress and of religious and civil liberty."
Masonry's mark is embedded in the Great Seal of the United States, and the official seal of the Supreme Court of California was marked with numerous Masonic symbols during the period 1850- 1873.
The Fraternity's activities in the American Revolution, Mexico, and the Stakes of New York, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania, as well as Albert Pike's work in the Civil War were noted in Chapters one and two.
Masonry In The Civil War
The Craft's relationship to any nation was clearly explained at the time of the Civil War in an 1861 letter from the Grand Lodge of York Masons in Pennsylvania to their counterparts in Tennessee. The letter said :
"Masonry is as old as government. It constitutes a government in itself…
"Masonry is a sovereignty and a law unto itself…It knows nothing but the principles and teachings of its faith.
"The proud position [of Masonry is to] stand aloof from the rise and fall of empires, the disturbances in States, the wars of contending nations, and rebellions and revolutions in commonwealths or among people…
"The claims of a brother are not dissolved by war…the tie once formed, is only sundered by death.
The same letter said: "By the ancient Constitutions of Masonry, a brother, even when engaged in rebellion against his country, is still to be considered as a Mason; his character as such being indefeasible."
During the War of Secession, as the War Between the States is sometimes called, the Union Government was seriously concerned about several secret subversive groups which operated in the North and South during the Civil War. Aithough military records did not formally identify any of those organizations with Freemasonry, the groups shared characteristics common to the Masonic Fratemity. Like Masonry, those secret units
- Operated under a "Supreme Council" with a chief executive at State level known as the "Grand Commander."
- Maintained a rigid secrecy about their activities.
- Held formal meetings in "lodges" and "temples.
- Restricted membership of the "vulgar herd" to the basic "mysteries" of the group
- Bound members by oaths which demanded blind obedience to superiors.
- Threatened awesome bodily mutilations and death if oaths of secrecy were violated.
- Utilized passwords, hand grips, and signs of distress to protect the secret societies and their members.
The Deputy Grand Commander of one of the secret societies, Charles E. Dunn, of the Order of American Knights (OAK), insisted that President Lincoln had "usurped" powers and thereby forfeited all claim to support from members of the Order. Moreover, said Dunn, action taken to force Lincoln's "expulsion" from power "is an inherent right" which belongs to the Order, and is "not revolution."
Dunn's statement is quite similar to the following words found in Albert Pike's Morals and Dogma: "Resistance to power usurped is not merely a duty which man owes to himself and his neighbor, but a duty which he owes to his God."
Secret agent William Taylor of the Union's Provost Marshal's office reported on an OAK Lodge meeting he attended, presided over by Dr. John Shore, a St. Louis physician. During the meeting, attended by 149 Lodge members, it was announced that General Albert Pike had "promised arms and equipment" for a military company then being formed by the Lodge.
Subsequently, in a sworn statement, Dr. Shore denied membership in OAK or any ather secret political organizations. However, Shore did admit membership in Masonry, and said his obligations to Masonry are "most assuredly" sacred and "of paramount consideration."
In response to the Provost Marshal's question whether, "under oath" he was permitted to reveal the secrets of Masonry before a court of justice, Dr. Shore replied: "I am not."
A Fourth Degree member of OAK, Green B. Smith, in a sworn statement, said an oath of the Order was "paramount to every other oath."
Smith further indicated that the OAK might well have had Masonic roots when he noted that the Order "extends back to the Revolution of 1776, having had a previous existence up to the Rebellion."
OAK was organized in 1873 by Clement L. Valandigham, a Democratic Congressman from Ohio. The Order was known also as the Order of tbe Sons of Liberty and the Knights of the Order of the Sons of Liberty.
Valandigham died June 17, 1871. His funeral was "under the direction of the Masons," and "many members of the Masonic fraternity" escorted his remains to his late residence.
According to the Judge Advocate General of the Union Army, the OAK Order engaged in the following activities:
- Aided soldiers to desert and protected deserters.
- Worked to undermine portions of the Army
- Furnished lawyers to find "some quasi-legal pretext" to help soldiers leave the Army.
- Imbued military camps with a spirit of discontent and disaffection, and "whole companies were broken up."
- Members of the Order who were drafted into the Army "were instructed…to use their arms against their fellow soldiers, rather than the enemy, or, if possible, to desert to the enemy."
- Assassinations and murders were carried out which were "discussed at the councils of the Order."
President Andrew Johnson And Masonry
After Albert Pike had been tried and found guilty of treason for his activities during the Civil War, Benjamin B. French, a 33rd Degree Mason and member of the board of directors of the Supreme Council of the Scottish Rite, wrote a letter, dated July 1, 1865, to President Andrew Johnson (also a Mason) urging him to pardon Pike. Additional appeals on Pike's behalf were made to the President by Masons from different parts of the United States.
On April 20, 1866, the Scottish Rite Supreme Council met in Washington, at which time the Masons' Sovereign Grand Inspector General, T.P. Shaffner of Kentucky wrote to the Attorney General of the United States to request that Pike be pardoned. Two days later, the President's military aide wrote to the Attorney General, and "by order of the President," directed him "to send to this office [the White House] warrant for pardon of Albert Pike of Arkansas." The following day, April 23, 1866, officials of the Supreme Council, including Pike, "visited the President at the White House," and the President handed Pike "a paper constituting a complete pardon for his part in the Civil War."
Nine months later, a list of "pardoned rebels," including Pike, was released to the press. The list showed the names of the pardoned individuals and the person or persons, if any, who had spoken on behalf of the pardonedee. The entry for Pike read:
"Albert Pike, rebel Brigadier-General; by Hon. B.B. French, Col. T.P. Shaffner, and a large number of others."
In March, 1867, the House Judiciary Committee began an investigation into charges by some Congressmen that Johnson should be impeached. Later, when the committee finally issued its report, a key charge against the President was that "he pardoned large numbers of public and notorious traitors… "
Shortly after the impeachment investigation began, Pike and General Gordon Granger met with President Johnson at the White House for approximately three hours. Subsequent to that meeting, General Granger was summoned before the Judiciary Committee where he was asked to disclose the substance of the conversation with the President. The General told the committee:
"They [President Johnson and Pike] talked a great deal about Masonry. More about that than anything else. And from what they talked about between them, I gathered that he [Pike] was the superior of the President in Masonry. I understood from the conversation that the President was his subordinate in Masonry. That was all there was to it . . "
On June 20, 1867, the President received a delegation of Scottish Rite officials in his bedroom at the White House where he received the 4th through the 32nd Degrees of the Scottish Rite "as an honorarium."
Later that month, the President journeyed to Boston to dedicate a Masonic temple. Accompanying him was General Granger and a delegation of the Knights Templar.
Addressing a crowd of well-wishers at a Boston hotel, President Johnson said he came to the city "for two reasons, one of which was to visit the State of Massachusetts. There is another [reason] it is true, to which I shall not allude on this occassion."
On June 25, The New York Times page one lead story was headlined: "Masonic Celebration," and provided many details of the history and growth of Masonry in Massachusetts. Strangely, however, no mention was made of the investigation of the Fraternity by the Massachusetts Legislature in 1834 which reported Freemasonry was "a distinct Independent Government within our own Government, and beyond the control of the laws of the iand by means of its secrecy, and the oaths and regulations which its subjects are bound to obey, under Penalty of death."
Actually, the Times was so obviously overwhelmed by the Masonic event that four of the seven columns on page one of the June 25th issue of that newspaper were devoted to extolling Masonry.
The New York daily said the 16,000 marching Masons, resplendent in their regalia, were so impressive that "a finer looking body of men has never before been seen in this city or elsewhere."
At the Masonic Temple, the President was accompanied by General Granger, Benjamin B. French and T. P. Shaffner.
During his address to the gathering, the President disclosed the other reason he came to the State of Massachusetts. He said:
"I should not have visited Massachusetts, at least on the present occasion, had it not been for the order of Masonry. I came in good faith for the express purpose of participating and witnessing the dedication of this temple today to Masonry, and as far as I could, let it be much or little, to give my countenance and my sanction."
Clearly, Scotish Rite Freemasonry had a friend in President Andrew Johnson.
Masonry And The Philippine Insurrection
Conventional wisdom says the Philippine Insurrection of 1896 was ignited because of native opposition to the power of the Catholic Church in the Islands. The revolutionary fire was fueled by the writings of Jose Rizal, augmented by the political leadership of Emilio Aguinaldo.
Subsequently, during the Spanish-American War, Commodore George Dewey furnished arms to Aguinaldo and urged him to rally the Philippine people against the Spanish. However, when the United States succeeded Spain as the ruling colonial power, Aguinaldo led a new revolt that became largely a guerrilla action, and "cost far more money and took far more lives than the Spanish-American War."
That is the conventional thumb-nail account of events in the Philippines at the turn of the Century, but it is quite superficial and misleading. In reality the Philippine Insurrection was orchestrated by Freemasonry, and while Emilio Aguinaldo indeed led that revolution, he did so as a dedicated member and tool of the Craft.
That insight into Philippine history was suppressed by the United States Government for 45 years, until it finally was revealed by historian John T. Farrell in 1954.
The United States Government concealed the real history of the Insurrection, according to a National Archives pamphlet, because of a "reluctance to publish facts that might prove injurious to ex-revolutionists, Federal officials, and military personnel." Also some people felt the War Department report "expressed a personal viewpoint and was not an objective study of Philippine affairs."
Captain John R.M. Taylor, author of the War Department's suppressed report, noted that lodges of the Masonic Grand Orient of Spain were established in the Philippine Islands around 1890, and proselytes from those lodges formed the Katipunan, a Tagalong Masonic revolutionary organization.
The Katipunan was the outgrowth of a series of nine associations formed by a revolutionary clique to seek independence for the Philippines. To accomplish that purpose, the clique mounted a systematic attack on the monastic orders in the Islands to undermine their prestige, "and to destroy their influence upon the great mass of the population."
A 1898 "Memorial" from the Dominican Fathers to the Spanish Government said:
"In consequence of the teaching of the Freemasons, the voice of the parish priest has no longer any effect on numbers of the natives, especially at Manila and in the neighboring provinces . . .
"The Freemasons…have recommended the war against us."
And the Spanish commander of Manila's Civil Guard, Olegario Diaz, wrote on October 28, 1896:
"It is fully proven that Masonry has been the principal cause of the trouble in these islands, not only from the advanced and irreligious ideas scattered about, but more by the foundation of secret societies of a distinctly separatist character."
Commander Diaz also said the Grand Master of the Spanish Grand Orient sent Masons to establish native Masonic lodges of exclusive Tagalong character. Within flve years, 180 Tagalong lodges had been established in the Philippines.
The Masons planned and carried out a "brutal and shameless campaign" against monastic Orders and constantly ridiculed religion. Later, this campaign acquired a political character, which included attacks on the central government and the authorities in the Archipelago.
Jose Rizal established a secret society called the Philippine League to which only Masons were admitted to membership. Its purpose was to educate the people in liberal ideas and ultimately armed rebellion.
The League was governed by a Supreme Council. The founders of the organization "took a solemn oath on a human skull, which they afterward kissed, and signed a document of agreement with their own blood, making the necessary incision in one of their arms." Further, every initiate "was bound to carry on the propaganda by every means in his power…and under severe penalties to guard the secret oath, to report everything they knew to the League, and to obey their superiors blindly."
Organizers of the Katapunan and members of its first Supreme Council also were members of Rizal's Philippine League.
One section of the oath taken by members of the Katapunan asked:
"Do you swear before Our Lord Jesus that you will be able to assassinate your parents, brothers, wives, sons, relatives, friends, fellow townsmen or Katipunan brothers should they forsake or betray our cause?"
Punishment for disobeying Katipunan directives—which included all Philippine people "whether they want to be or not"—was sobering. It consisted of being buried alive and then having the murdered person's possessions—including his family—taken by members of an organization called the "mandudicut." That punishment was decreed by Emilio Aguinaldo, the Katipunan Supreme Leader and dictator.
Information about some of the operations of the Katipunan was furnished by a member of the organization, Teodoro Patino, a printer for Diario de Manila, a local daily. Patino gave the information to his sister, who was a student at the Catholic college at Lauban, operated by the Sisters of Charity. The girl told the Mother Superior, who later interviewed the printer. The Mother Superior told Patino to pass the information to Father Mariano Gil, his pastor, which he did.
As a result, documents were seized at the Diorio, a number of members of the Katipunan were arrested, and numerous letters and other material were found which corroborated Patino's statement.
Further corroboration was provided by a report of Isabelo de Los Royes, who gathered most of his information in prison from a Katipunan member.
The U.S. War Department document includes a report by the Civil Governor of Manila, Manuel Luengo to the Spanish Colonial Minister. The report, dated October 1, 1896, includes "An Extraordinary Document of Philippine Masonry, Giving Instructions To Be Carried Out At The Outbreak Of The Rebellion." The "Instructions" say, in part:
"Fourth. While the attack is being made on the Captain General and other Spanish authorities, the men who are loyal will attack the convents and behead their infamous inhabitants. As for the riches contained in said convents, they will be taken over by this G.R. Log. [i.e., Grand Regional Lodge]…
"Seventh. The bodies of the friars will not be buried, but will be burned in just payment for the crimes which during their lives they committed against the noble Filippinos for three centuries of hateful domination."
Names listed at the end of the "Instructions" are shown as "President of the Executive Committee, Boliva. The Vice Grand Master, Gordiano Bruno. The Grand Secretary Galileo."
Captain Taylor said other documents show the names actually are pseudonyms for President Andres Bonifacio; Vice Grand Master, Pio Valenzuela; and Grand Secretary, Emilio Jacinto.
Bonifacio seized the leadership of the Katipunan in January, 1896, and turned the Masonic Supreme Council of that organization into the insurgent government of the Philippines, with himself as dictator. Emilio Aguinaldo succeeded him.
The American Connection with Philippine Masonry
Insurgent Record No. 8 lists letters found in the papers of E.A. [Emilio Aguinaldo] which show that a Masonic Lodge called "Patria" was used to cover insurgent intrigues in October, 1899.
Insurgent Record No. 9 is a copy of an undated letter from Juan Utor y Fernandez, a 33rd Degree Mason, to U.S. Army Chaplain Charles Pierce, relative to the establishment of a newspaper to be named "Patria." The letter to Chaplain Pierce says the "brothers [i.e. Freemasons] who put their confidence in me… [believe that] by your and my cooperating with our brother American Masons, and especially with the good will and wishes of Senor Otis, may cause the happy day [of peace] to arrive… "
Continuing, Fernandez said he expected the cooperation of "the most worthy General Otis, and our brothers… "
Another letter by Fernandez, now shown as editor of La Patria Democratic Daily, to Don Ambrosio Flores, dated October 8, 1899, introduces the bearer of the letter, one Senor Giselda, who has with him a copy of La Patria. The letter urges Flores to read and provide Ferandez with an opinion of the publication. Fernandez's letter added:
"I am in relation with some American brothers of importance, and if we can give, secretly, a Masonic character to the peace we perhaps shall succeed in guaranteeing it from attack in the future since you know, dear brother, the England and the United States are the two countries in which the Masonic institution has most respect and weight."
According to a letter received by Aguinaldo from La Patria, the newspaper was established, apparently with the approval of the American General, Otis, "to inaugurate a frank campaign against the annexationist sentiment" being advanced by two other Masonic dailies.
The writer, Aurelio Tolentino, said he had formed an association with seven people, "and indeed we told General Otis of it through Mr. Pierce, a Protestant clergyman in the confidence of said General…The General approved our political plan and, as a result, we published our first number on the 16th of September last."
The letter continued by noting that Tolentino and some colleagues had founded "Patria" Masonic Lodge "to which no one in favor of autonomy belongs in spite of some having applied for admission." The object of his group, he said, is to work for his government and to "better consolidate the laws of Liberty, Equality and Fraternity."
The references to "Senor Otis" and "General Otis," suggest that the man belonged to the Masonic Fraternity. Although the General is not further identified in the War Department report, General Elwell S. Otis, was at the time U.S. Army Commander in the Philippines, and Director of Civil Government. Also, Harrison Gray Otis, owner and publisher of The Los Angeles Times, served as a Brigadier General in the Philippines during the Spanish American War.
Of the two, it would seem that Major General Elwell S. Otis, as head of Civil Government, would have been the General most closely involved in authorizing the establishment of a newspaper in the Islands.
As for Aguinaldo, he and other Masons organized the Triagle Magdole which later became the Magdolo Lodge. The proclamation of the first Philippine Republic took place on the porch of Aguinaldo's home, an edifice which also served as the Magdolo Lodge.
In January, 1955, Aguinaldo said: "It cannot be denied that the Filipino Revolution against Spain was the work and glory of Freemasonry in the Philippines."
Masons also were "instrumental in working for the grant of Philippine independence by the United States."
Additional evidence of Masonic influence in the Philippines surfaced following World War II.
First, shortly after the War's close, Federal Reserve regulations prohibited organizations and individuals from sending abroad more than $500. However, in response to pressure exerted by General Douglas MacArthur (a prominent Freemason), the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, Virginia, authorized Grand Commander John Cowles of the Scottish Rite's Southern Jurisdiction to send $5,000 to the Philippines to rebuild and restore Masonic property. Shortly thereafter, the Federal Reserve authorized another $15,000 to be sent by Masons to the Islands, followed by another $100,000 sent by the Brethem in California.
Secondly, the Craft was successful in amending legislation designed to rehabilitate property of churches and other religious organizations lost or damaged due to the War, so that it covered Masonic property. The Masonic amendment added the words "any corporation or sociedad anonima" [i.e. secret society] organized pursuant to the laws in effect in the Philippine Islands at the time of its organization.
As a result of that legislation (Public Iaw 79-370), eighty percent of the cost of repairs for Scottish Rite Temples in the Philippines was underwritten by U.S. taxpayers.
Interestingly enough, in May, 1955, a claim for recovery of World War II loss and damage to Catholic property on the Philippines was disallowed.
Finally, it should be noted that one Philippine statesman made known his serious reservations about demands the Fraternity imposes upon its initiates.
Brother Manuel Quezon, former President of the Philippine Commonwealth, although selected for advancement to the 33rd Degree, declined the dubious honor, because "he feared some way, sometime, that there might be some obligation in accepting the honor which would be in conflict with his allegiance to the Philippines."
Masonry And World War I
Some sources attribute World War I to Masonic intrigue. However, according to a New Age editorial, the War was precipitated by a "secret treaty" between the Vatican and Serbia, which would have annexed Serbia to the Vatican State and imposed canon law on that non-Catholic country. When the treaty became known, the editorial continued, Archduke Franz Ferdinand, "Roman Catholic heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne [and] known to be a secret party to the policy embodied in the treaty," was assassinated by Gavrilo Princep.
Not mentioned by the Scottish Rite journal was the fact that the alleged assassins of the Archduke were members of the "Black Hand," a South Slav revolutionary organization which was a progeny of Freemasonry.
During the trail, Princep testified that his colleague, Ciganovitvh, "told me he was a Freemason;" and, on another occasion, "told me that the Heir Apparent [Franz Ferdinand] had been condemned to death by a Freemason's lodge."
Moreover, another of the accused assassins, Chabrinovitch, testified that Major Tankositch, one of the plotters, was a Freemason.
Communism And Freemasonry
The legacy of World War I was the Russian Revolution and the scourge of International Communism, both of which had Masonic influence.
James H. Billington, in his penetrating treatise on the history of modern revolution, documents the intimate ties between Freemasonry, Illuminism and modern revolutions. Of Freemasonry. He says:
"So great, indeed, was the general impact of Freemasonry in the revolutionary era that some understanding of the Masonic milieu seems an essential starting point for any serious inquiry into the occult roots of the revolutionary tradition."
Billington notes that the "masonic lodges of Geneva provided the ambiance" in which the early 19th Century revolutionary, Filippo Giuseppe Buonarotti—the "first apostle of modern communism"—formulated "his first full blueprint for a new society of revolutionary republicans: the Sublime and Perfect Masters." Both the society's name and three levels of membership proposed for it "had been adopted from Masonry."
The New Age observed that after 1825, many Russian Masons exiled themselves to France where lodges operating in the Russian language were sponsored by the Grand Orient. Some of the exiles later returned to Russia, and organized lodges in St. Petersburg and Moscow. Later, additional lodges were organized in the early 20th Century and had "an avowedly political aim and view; namely, that of the overthrow of the autocracy."
The Scottish Rite monthly added: "The first Revolution in March, 1917 is said to have been inspired and operated from these lodges and all the members of Kerenski's government belonged to them."
The Craft And Spanish Communism
The Craft's empathy with Communism was evident in Spain. In 1927 fraternal relations were resumed between the U.S.S.R. and the Spanish Scottish Rite.
Four years later, King Alfonso XII was forced into exile, and Masons, Communists, Socialists and Anarchists came into power. The Catholic Church was disestablished, and education was secularized. In June, 1931, the "Bulletin" of the Supreme Council of the Scottish Rite in Spain boasted:
"The new Republic…was the perfect image molded by the gentle hands of our doctrines and principles. There will not be effected another phenomenon of a political revolution more perfectly Masonic than the Spanish one."
By 1933 a conservative reaction had set in, but the Marxist-Masonic group returned to power and governed from 1935 to 1939 when they were toppled, precipitating the Spanish Civil War.
With the ouster of the Marxists-Masons, the New Age pleaded repeatedly for Americans to support the Spanish Loyalists. People were urged to write their Congressmen to repeal legislation passed in 1937 which embargoed shipments of munitions and war materials to the Marxist government of Spain.
In February, 1939, the New Age called attention to a meeting of two groups in Washington, D.C. which took opposite positions on aiding the Masonic-supported Marxists in Spain.
One group was the National Conference to Lift the Embargo Against Republican Spain. The other, called Keep the Embargo Committee, was supported by Monsignor [later Archbishop] Fulton J. Sheen, notable Catholic orator, author, and authority on Communism.
In his address at Constitution Hall before Keep the Embargo Committee supporters, Msgr. Sheen identified the Loyalists as "Red Spain," and urged "all those who believe in freedom, democracy and religion to join in a protest against the 'Reds' supporting the Loyalist cause in this country."
The pro-Loyalists met at the Masonic Almas Shrine Temple. Included among the speakers at that rally were Lieutenant Colonel John Gates, representing Friends of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade, and Herbert Biberman, motion picture director.
[Interestingly, several years later, the New Age published a list of organizations considered by the Attorney General of the United States as "subversive" to the national security interests of America. Included in the list was the Abraham Lincoln Brigade, which was cited as a Communist Party front organization].
The Scottish Rite monthly journal also noted that Spain's Nationalist Army of 1936-1939 "marched to war singing the battle song of Rafael del Riego, an unsuccessful revolutionary (and a Mason)."
The Masonic publication also said five cabinet members of the Loyalist government were Masons, as were five leading generals. However, a British history of the Spanish Civil War suggested that all the General officers of the Loyalist Army were Masons.
Communist China And Masonry
In 1925, the New Age reported that a Chinese secret society [tong] "pretended" to be Masonic in 1903-1904, in order to secure protection of American Masons, which was forthcoming. However, the real object of the tong was to overthrow the Manchu dynasty.
That report was clarified some years later when it was explained that the Hoon Bong, or Red Society of China, was founded by Hoong Hsieu Chuan, some of whose "educators were Masons." And "[a]ided by such friends, Hoong formed a secret society to oppose the then ruling Manchu Dynasty…
"The Hoong Bong contributed materially to the overthrow of the Manchu Dynasty . . "
Prior to World War II, Masons praised militant Chinese Communist leader, Chou En Lai, who was extolled as the person largely responsible for negotiating the Sian Agreement of 1936 which terminated the Chinese civil war.
A Masonic writer said the Agreement "indicates that the Red Army of China represented an agrarian movement based on a patriotically inspired program…If from this war emerges a real democracy for China, there will be no occasion for the old Red Army to again come to life as such. It can be merged into a government that believes in fair representation of all classes, and is in that process now."
More direct American identification with Chinese Masonry occurred in 1943 when John Stewart Service instituted the Fortitude Lodge at Chunking.
Mr. Service was a diplomatic adviser to General Joseph Stilwell and General Albert Wedemeyer in China during World War II. Commenting on that situation, journalist M. Stanton Evans has written:
"In that position he [Service] maintained a running fire of criticism against America's only ally Chiang Kai-shek, contrasting his 'Kuomintang' regime unfavorably with that of the Chinese Communists."
On June 7, 1945, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) arrested Service and five others for alleged violation of the Espionage Act. However, he was not indicted; although in 1951, the U.S. Civil Service Commission's Loyalty Review Board found "there is reasonable doubt as to his loyalty," and he should be "forthwith removed from the rolls of the Department of State." Nevertheless Service remained with the Department until his resignation in August, 1962.
Masonry, Communism And The Catholic Church
In 1948, Grand Commander John Cowles said religion "is freer in Russia today than it is in Roman Catholic Spain."
By 1950, the Scottish Rite feared the Catholic Church would "capture the United States" and turn it against Russia. This grandiose plan supposedly was to be accomplished by using the U.S. government and its resources "to annihilate Russia and Russian opposition to the Pope."
During the years immediately following World War II, the Scottish Rite Masons repeatedly insisted that the Catholic Church is far more dangerous than Soviet Communism.
Catholicism, not Communism nor Socialism is Masonry's immediate worry, the New Age said.
"How much longer are the free peoples of the Western World going to submit to resistance being confined to Russia, while they lift neither voice nor fist to strike the even more insidious force of the Vatican Church-State?", a New Age editorial asked.
Minimization of the threat of Communism and magnification of an alleged threat posed by the Catholic Church was a consistant theme of the New Age during the mid-1950s.
Freemasonry, Nazism and Fascism
The unremitting antagonism of the Scottish Rite toward the Roman Catholic Church is well documented. Therefore, it is surprising to find the official publication of that Rite testifying to the Church's early opposition to Hitler, at a time when the Craft itself was currying favor with the Nazis.
In 1931, the New Age reported: "the Hitlerites are facing stiff opposition from a newly organized group headed by five leading bishops of the Roman Catholic hierarchy in Germany."
Continuing, the article said:
"The anti-Fascist stand on the part of the Catholic Church was first asserted by the Bishops of Bavaria and Silesia, who in official statements virtually excluded members of the Nationalist Socialist Party from the church. At the present time, [other Catholic bishops] have succeeded in virtually lining up the entire Catholic population of the republic against the Hitlerites.
"In a statement, the Bishops charge the Fascisti with preaching hatred and racial religion… "
Eight years later, the New Age found that when the Nazi revolution came to Germany, Albert Einstein looked first to the universities, then to editors of newspapers, and to individual journalists to speak out against Hitler's engulfing tyranny. But his efforts were in vain, because those elements in German society were silenced. Einstein added:
"Only the Church stood squarely across the path of Hitler's campaign for the suppression of truth…[The Church alone has had the courage and persistence to stand for intellectual truth and moral freedom."
In its efforts to curry favor with Hitler, one Mason wrote in the New Age: "I do not belong to Hitler, as I do not know his opinion about Masons, but he seems to be an honest man and therefore his movement has become strong. It is not the intention of the Hitlerites to expel the Jews. We have Jewish families in Germany who came with the Romans and settled here peacefully for centuries…the Hitlerites are opposed to the lower class elements which have immigrated here from foreign countries, importing Bolshevistic ideas…"
In 1933, various German Masonic lodges changed their names, in an effort to avoid being closed down by Hitler. Also, many lodges broke relationship with foreign Masonic groups to demonstrate their German nationalism and to indicate they were merely fraternal organizations.
Commenting on the situation, The New York Times noted that German Masonic lodges were adopting Christian names. One called itself the National Christian Order of Frederick the Great, which prompted the Times to editorialize: "Neither Frederick nor his close chums Voltaire and Catherine of Russia have hitherto figured as conspicuous Christians."
German Masonry also was "pleading for the admission of its members to the Nazi Party." By-laws of the Fraternity were changed to stipulate: "This order professes a German Christianity which has much in commnon with the primitive sun worship. The order's symbols are the sun and the cross."
Eligibility for membership in German Masonry became limited to those Christian who can prove pure Teutonic descent for three generations.
But the Nazis were not the only subjects of Masonic sychophancy. The New Age discloses:
"Masons adhered to Fascism at the beginning and even contributed toward the march on Rome. Freemasonry, officially, was never hostile to Fascism until Il Duce, influenced by the Vatican, prepared a bill against secret societies, forgetting to include in it the Society of Jesus, which is the most secret society in the world." [Emphasis in original].
By 1934, Masonry's efforts to temporize with the Nazis proved unsuccessful. Acting on Hitler's orders, Hermann Goering dissolved all the lodges, including those which purported to be Christian.
Although the New Age had been somewhat ambivalent about the war against the Axis Powers prior to 1939, its militancy on the issue galvanized after the Duke of Kent, brother of the reigning king, George VI, was selected as the Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of England in 1939. That action by the English Masons continued an unbroken tradition of intimate association between Freemasonry and English royalty that goes back to 1737.
By late summer, 1940, the New Age became a strong advocate of U.S. involvement in the war, at first urging direct aid to England, but later pressing for direct American entry into the war.
An editorial called the Brotherhood to "rally to the support of England, not alone because that country is the last stronghold of Freemasonry in Europe… " The editorial said the "enemies" of the Craft "would have reason to respect the military power influence could marshal in this country," if it chose to do so.
Nevertheless, the American people were strongly opposed to sending their youth to fight on foreign soil. The strong division of opinion on the subject was evident by the one-vote margin with which the House approved legislation in September, 1940, calling for a miiitary draft. And by the summer of 1941, the first draftees were chanting "OHIO," meaning: "Over the Hill in October"—or a massive flight from military service once the troops had served one year of compulsory military duty.
As the public sentiment became increasingly divided on involvement in Europe, the New Age continued to press for U.S. entry into the War. Finally, the issue was settled when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.
Meanwhile in Europe, the Masonic Brotherhood continued to operate in "secret circles in the private security of locked homes to carry on their Masonic work," according to Brother Meyer Mendelsohn, a French refugee who emigrated to the United States.
Brother Mendelsohn's statement was confirmed and elaborated upon in an unusually candid and lengthy letter written by a German Mason to the Commanding General, Headquarters, U.S. Forces European Theatre, in connection with a request that Freemasons be legally permitted to assemble.
Masonry's Political Orientatian Confirmed
The writer of the letter, Wilfrid Schick, a resident of Munich, and "speaker for my comrades," urged the European Commander to reopen the Symbolische Grossloge von Deutschland, which he characterized as a philosophical lodge organized on an international basis to serve "the idea of the general world chain."
Herr Schick told how Lodge members during the War use "appropriate manoeuvres" and "skillful tactics of the freemasons" to destroy or otherwise secure all Craft documents relating to membership and operation of the Grand Lodge. Those tactics, he said, destroyed the "outward organization" of the Grand Lodge, while allowing the Brotherhood to work in the "smallest circles" to carry on a "quiet, permanent struggle" against "the power of suppression."
The Bavarian Mason asked that the U.S. military officials utilize the civilian radio network to help him in locating other German Masons.
Confirming that Masonry avoids all conventional religious beliefs, Brother Schick also made it clear that Masonry's interest in "education" extends far beyond formal schooling at elementary through university levels. Such "education" also includes the inculcation of Masonic philosophy into polititcal party doctrines.
In that regard, he said the basic beliefs of "true freemasonry," center on the "eternal, inborn rights of every individual… and the avoiding of all dogmatic and intolerant bindings…"
It was vital, he insisted, that Freemasonry be expanded in Germany in order "to maintain the exclusivity" which is "absolutely necessary to create…a highly qualified freemason leader class."
Every Freemason, he continued, must be granted the right to participate in politics "without limitation" in order to "win influence on the public life and on the governmental administration, with the assistance of political parties."
Important to that effort, he stated, is the necessity to make "a concentrated penetration of…party doctrines with freemason ideas."
The "real sphere" of the Lodge, he added, is "to fulfil an educational mission."
The Bavarian Mason also confirmed that Masonry uses the same deceptive techniques which were first revealed in connection with Adam Weishaupt's Bavarian Illuminati.
Brother Schick said the Craft must propagate the ideas of world Freemasonry by using "a number of institutions for education." Such institutions, he continued, "will have to be created as the first elements to the real lodges." He proposed, as did Weishaupt, that the institutions be "in the form of societies for politics, economic politics, for art and sciences, etc." Those types of "institutions," he observed, would appeal to the best class of people, including youth.
Schick confirmed that the Catholic Church is a particular obstruction to Masonry's success. He said, in the "occidental cultural sphere" [i.e., Europe, North and South America] only the Catholic Church" stands as an opponent of Freemasonry by appealing to the "dogma-bound" people, while Masonry appeals to the "dogmaless."
The Bavarian Craftsman made it clear that Freemasonry's principles of "love of the mother-country and duties as a citizen" must never be wrongly understood. "Superordinated to all," he insisted, "is the duty…towards the all-uniting commumity of fellow-freemasons of the democratic world."
Finally, Brother Schick insisted that any attack on the "natural rights of humanity" by "the schools of religion or political dogmatists" must never be tolerated, but rather strongly "opposed … with active fighting… "
U.S. Military Opposes Masonry
Herr Schick had to wait two months for a reply from the military commandant. Finally, on December 10, 1945, he was notified that Freemasonry could not be reactivated, because the Intelligence Division (G-2) found Freemasonry to be "a secret organization and … their meetings should be prohibited."
The question of revival of the German Masonic Order was raised again by General Lucius Clay, Commander of the Office of Military Government, in a message to General Joseph McNarney, Commander of the European Forces. McNarney replied by secret cable: "Policy this headquarters is to prohibit application of German Masonic Order at this time. Previous application for permission to reestablish was unfavorably considered…Decision based on the grounds that the Masonic Order is a secret organization and also on the uncertain security situation."
A memorandum by the legal division of the Office of Military Government (OMG), Germany, dated April 1, 1946, noted that members of the Hohenzollern family were Freemasons and that the Craft "flourished" under the Weimar Republic. Under the Nazis, the memorandum, said the lodges were viewed as "a centre of international conspiracy to destroy Germany," and were, accordingly, dissolved.
That memorandum served as a background document for another memorandum written by General Clay to the War Department on June 27, 1946 relative to a German-American Club in the U.S. Zone known as the Cosmopolitan Club.
General Clay noted that the Club was dissolved because Prince Louis Ferdinand, a grandson of Kaizer Wilhelm, was a close friend of Captain Merle A. Potter, director of Military Government at Bad Kissingen, who also was the organizer and president of the Club.
Prior to his World War II service, Potter had been a movie critic for the Minneapolis Journal for 17 years. He described the Club as a Kiwanis-type organization, and said no discussion of politics was permitted during Club meetings. The organization reportedly was comprised of professional men and business executives.
However, Potter was reassigned following dissolution of the Cosmopolitan Club, "because of the poor judgment exercised by Captain Potter in having Louis Ferdinand as a member of the Club and his personal friend."
The memorandum added: "We fully recognize that the association of a Military Government Officer with a member of the Hohenzollern family will be misunderstood at home, in Germany, and by our allies."
On July 3, 1946, Major General H.R. Bull, Chief of Staff, U.S. Forces European Theatre, informed Clay that he (Bull) and General McNarney were concerned about security problems associated with secret social organizations. At the same time, he said "penetrating" such groups by Counter-Intelligence Corps (CIC) agents "could be of doubtful practicable" value. Nevertheless, the Chief of Staff was concerned about the secret social clubs, because fraternizing under "the cloak of secrecy…might well be abused." Accordingly, General Bull said he and General McNarney recommented that any directive allowing meetings of social groups and secret societies be "deferred indefinitely."
Masonry Wins Again
However, despite that recommendation, the Allied Military Government for Germany approved reactivation of the German Grand Lodge of Freemasonry on July 23, 1947.
By October, 1947, Captain Potter had been promoted to Major, and became adviser to the Chief of Staff on American-German relations.
On October 8, Potter wrote a letter to the Military Government of Germany reporting on a conference which took place September 23-27, 1947, which was attended by twelve American-German Social Discussion Clubs. A summary of the minutes of that conference showed that those attending had discussed formation of a United States of Europe. The topic was characterized as "a subject of outstanding discussion."
The conference mentioned by Major Potter appeared to be uncannily similar to Herr Schick's proposal for establishing "institutions for education" in Masonic philosophy, such as "societies for politics, economic politics, for art and sciences, etc."
In that regard, the idea of a United States of Europe, and the concept that Masonry "had no nationality" was advanced in the French lodges.
As a matter of fact, early in the War years, Masonic spokesmen had viewed World War II as a turning point for the Fraternity, and spoke of the "world government" expected to be established at the conclusion of the War to help usher in a "newer phase of evolutionary progress."
A Czech Mason said the struggle for the freedom of man began with the American and French Revolutions, and World War II "is the climax of a world ideological struggle which started at the end of the l8th Century. It is the struggle of the New Age against the Middle Age."
Masonry In Japan
Meanwhile, on the other side of the world, Masonry had gotten off to a rather slow start.
In 1893, Japanese law empowered police to attend and superintend any organized group meeting, and to break up any such gatherings if the police determined there was any reason for doing so. Secret meetings were prohibited.
Because of that situation, Scottish Rite Masons in Japan contacted the Grand Commander in Washington, D.C. and urged him to explain the situation to the President of the United States and the Secretary of State. Apparently that was done, and Japanese law was not enforced against U.S. Scottish Rite Masons.
However, in 1936, the Japanese Government became alarmed at what it called the "mysterious world organization" known as Freemasons, and "secretly investigated the Craft."
The concern was not surprising. At that time, the Masonic "Club" of Kobe, Japan, had been in existence for 65 years as the Japanese branch of Freemasonry. It was viewed as "a secret society of Judea which has been picturing a phantasm of a mysterious world." Branches of the "Club" were located in Kobe, Yokahama, Tokyo, and in Korea.
The Kobe Masonic Club came into existence in strict privacy. The Club was made up of several lodges, such as the Rising Sun Lodge, and the Lodge Hyogo and Osaka (Scottish). Most of the leading foreign residents from England, America, France, Switzerland, Sweden and Denmark "secretly affiliated themselves with the Club," which had as a "principal object…to "bring about a world revolution."
In October, 1942, the New Age ran an article by one of 10 Freemasons who had returned to the United States from Japan. The anonymous author of the article told of the thoroughness with which the Japanese Government investigated Freemasonry. "Nothing has been left undone or unseen by them within the capabilities of those in charge," he said.
It was also noted that the "innermost secrets of the confidential files" of the Craft in Japan were taken by the government authorities.
Concluding, the article stated:
"... it behooves all of us first to gain victory and then to bear in mind the significance of that great legend so well known—Ordo Ab Chao."
The words "Ordo Ab Chao" mean Order From Chaos, and are the motto of the Scottish Rite's 33rd degree.
A book titled, On The World-Wide Secret Society, written by Jiro Imai, assistant professor of literature at Tokyo Imperial University, said that Freemasonry "was a most dangerous and subversive secret society." In reply, Dr. Sazkuzo Yoshino wrote that "the League of Nations was created with the genuine spirit of Freemasonry."
Nevertheless, the International Rotary Club of Japan "was ordered dissolved as an outer organ of Freemasonry." Also, Rotarians faced charges by Army officers that the organization had received secret orders for the destruction of the country, and were sending information to their enemies. The Japanese Rotarians were further accused of conspiring with Freemasonry against Japan's national policies."
Boy Scouts, too, were declared an arm of Freemasonry.
However, the status of Masons, Rotarians and Boy Scouts were changed dramatically with the defeat of Japan in World War II.
General Douglas MacArthur, Supreme Commander in Japan, informed George M. Saunders, 33rd Degree, Imperial Recorder of the Shrine of North America, that the Occupational Government under MacArthur was molded on the precepts of Freemasonry.
The five-star General recommended to the Masonic Supreme Council that his aide, Major Michael Rivisto, be named deputy in Japan. And so it was done: Rivisto became the first Master of the Tokyo Lodge.
Count Tsuneo Matsudaira, former President of the House of Councillors, said he knew Masonry very well. He added: "Japanese misunderstanding and prejudice toward Freemasonry was one of the main causes of the last war."
The Japanese official said further that Freemasonry "will undoubtedly be a social revolution in Japan."
One member of the Fraternity, after noting that General MacArthur, a 33rd Degree Mason, had reopened Masonic lodges in Japan, commented:
"Most of the Generals of the Occupation and many men of lesser rank who were in key positions were Masons. The Japanese have since concluded that Masonry had some connection with the success of the Occupation."
Moreover, the Sovereign Grand Commander of the Scottish Rite pointed out that all except one successor to General MacArthur as Far East Commander were "all active masons and members of the Scottish Rite." Those officers were Generals Matthew Ridgeway, Mark Clark, John Hull and Lyman Lemnitzer.
HOW IT'S DONE
Some men gravitate naturally to Freemasonry because of its Gnosticism and commitment to revolution, but the vast majority are attracted to the fraternity by its external glitter.
The following item in The New York Times typifies the favorable publicity which surrounds meetings of the Shriners—the so-called "fun-loving" adjunct of Masonry which is open only to men who are Knights Templar or who have received the 32nd degree in a Scottish Rite consistory.
KANSAS CITY, MO., July 5 (UPI)—Arab sheiks swished in flowing robes, Keystone Kops cavorted on tricycle-sized motor scooters, the cavalry chased the Indians, trumpeters tooted, horses pranced and motorcycles chugged-craziness prevailed on the downtown streets today.
The Shriners are well known for their ability to evoke laughter and spread happiness among young and old. They also are universally admired and respected for sponsoring hospitals which specialize in caring for children.
My own experience at a 1965 Shriner's parade in Washington, D. C. left my wife and me so impressed by the Arab sheiks, Keystone Kops, marching bands, clowns and choirs—and the immense joy and pleasure they all brought to our small childre—-that we were strongly persuaded to believe the Catholic Church's age-old condenmation of the Masonic Fraternity, must certainly be misguided.
Consequently, it was shocking later to learn that behind the festive facade and the children's charities lurked a more profoundly selfish purpose. Adam Weishaupt suggested the reason for such activities neady 200 years ago when he instructed his Illuminees:
"We must win the common people in every corner. This will be obtained chiefly by means of the schools, and to open, hearty behaviour. Show condescension, popularity, and toleration of their prejudices, which we, at leisure, shall root out and dispel."
In 1945, a member of the Craft put it this way: "the major job of the Masonic Fraternity is the creation of a healthy and enlightened public opinion." And, he added: All other Masonic activities are "incidental" to the real purpose of Freemasonry, which is "the creation and maintenance of a public opinion that will sustain the kind of world that we all wish to live in."
Public relations activities are the life-blood of Masonry, because the Craft's policy ostensibly forbids extending invitations to join the Fraternity. Rather, men who are attracted to the Craft must themselves request entry into the Lodge. This claim is often true, but it is well known that the Fraternity frequently expends considerable effort to invite persons of rank and distinction to accept entrance into the Secret Brotherhood. Two such trophies bagged by the Brotherhood were President William Howard Taft, and General Douglas MacArthur. They are typical examples of prominent individuals who were made Masons "by sight; that is, they did not request entry into the Fraternity, the Brotherhood imposed itself upon them, and elicited their consent to be identified with the Craft.
In 1968, the Scottish Rite Grand Commander clearly explained the technique for luring men into the Fraternity. He said Masons are "bound by age-old policies and traditions to refrain from inviting or making a direct appeal to individuals to apply for membership." So, to incite a desire to join the Craft, the Brotherhood must attract attention to the organization "in such a way" that the profane will initiate inquiries "as to how they might…become Masons."
Continuing, the Masonic chieftain said "tact, diplomacy, and skillful salesmanship will bring opportunities." In that regard, he mentioned a Masonic film, "In The Hearts Of Men," which had impressed many profane [i.e., non-Masons] by the number of "distinguished Americans [who] were Masons." Commenting further, the Grand Commander said:
"Crippled children's hospitals throughout the country, and the knowledge that Masons are largely responsible for them, has induced many outsiders to petition for the degrees of Masonry. The same can be said about education programs of the Supreme Council in support of the public schools and Americanism."
And he added: "It comes down to this: Responsible citizens of the United States want to help causes and institutions that are unselfishly working for the good of our country and humanity."
Pressing home the need for luring men into the Fraternity, the Commander said the Brethren must be "recognized as strong advocates of Masonic participation" in such publicly accepted entities "as public schools, scouting, youth organizations, YMCA, Salvation Army, and libraries."
Albert Pike placed in perspective how the Fraternity uses Masons who are nationally prominent public figures. He wrote: "Masons do not build monuments to [George] Washington, and plume themselves on the fact that he was a Mason merely on account of his Masonic virtues. It is because his civic reputation sheds glory upon the Order."
Professor Renner, one of the Marianen Academy scholars who gave a written deposition about his knowledge of the Illuminati, said the Order bound adepts by subduing their minds "with the most magnificent promises, and assure…the protection of great personages ready to do everything for the advancement of its members at the recommendation of the Order."
Moreover, the professor said, the Order (which, incidentally has much in common with modern Freemasonry) enticed into its lodges only those who could be useful: "Statesmen…counsellors, secretaries…professors, abbes, preceptors, physicians, and apothecaries are always welcome candidates to the Order."
Although the Craft popularized the phrase, "Brotherhood of Man Under the Fatherhood of God," in reality, it "was never intended for the multitude."
Masons who believe the Craft is a "social and fraternal order," are operating under an "erroneous impression," and become "a distinct liability" to the Fraternity.
It is truly surprising that thousands of men are lured into joining an organization about which they know almost nothing. Advertising experts call it "selling the sizzle and not the steak."
A 1950 New Age editorial remarked on the phenomenon by observing that the applicant for membership in the Craft "does not know in advance the vows he must take or the principles to which he will pledge allegiance. Yet, in spite of such a handicap, hundreds of person every year make application to join a Masonic Lodge."
Why do they do so? The editorial explains that the major reason is because a man's acquaintances and friends are members of the Fraternity, "and, if they have found Masonry in accordance with its reputation for good in the conununity, then he feels justified in the faith that nothing will be asked of him which could not be proclaimed to the world with property."
But the editorial did not find it necessary to report that, once inside, the initiates are bound by solemn oaths, and stern promises of mutilation and death if they reveal Masonic secrets. However, even if the Brotherhood's secrets are revealed, they are dismissed as untrue by the general public, because so many honorable men are associated with the Fraternity.
But what are the Fraternity's secrets? Why must members bind themselves so solenmly and agree to accept mutilation and death if the secrets are revealed? If the organization is simply fraternal, charitable and undedicated to good works, surely such extreme measures are totally uncalled for.
The obvious conclusion is that the Secret Brotherhood is hiding something so serious that decent men would never join it if they were fully informed in advance of its activities and purposes.
Targeting The Candidates
Masons obviously are very choosy about who makes up the "Brotherhood of Man" in the lodge rooms across the world. Craft leaders insist that it is "very important" for its investigating committees to scrutinize those who seek admission into the Fraternity. It is particularly important to determine the "religious views" of the candidates, as well as their "habits, associates, how they spend [their] leisure time, and whether [they are] financially able to become a Mason."
As part of the selection process, the candidate is personally interviewed by the investigative committee in the presence of his wife, in order to "ascertain that the financial condition of the family is such" that the man will be able to pay dues to the Craft without financial strain.
Masonic investigating committees check references provided by the candidate, and make inquiries of his co-workers. Moreover, Brothers who work in government law-enforcement agencies are contacted, and usually "are extremely cooperative."
The Brotherhood's own investigating agency is known as the Masonic Relief Association [MRA], "a great agency for information concerning all types of investigations of the character of individuals seeking the good offices of the Fraternity, and all that is necessary is to make use of it… "
The Binding Oaths
Once the candidate has been lured or targeted, he is formally initiated into the Fraternity amid occult signs and symbols of the Mystery Religions and, incongruously, the Holy Bible. The candidate for the Apprentice Degree, by direction, sinks to the floor on his bared left knee, his right knee forming the angle of a square. His left hand holds the Bible, square and compass, and his right hand rests on those Masonic symbols. Now the candidate proclaims in a loud voice before the Master of the Lodge and the assembled Brethren:
"I. ____________, of my own free will and accord, in the presence of Almighty God, and this Worshipful Lodge, erected to Him, and dedicated to the holy Saints John, do hereby and hereon most solemnly and sincerely promise and swear, that I will always hail, ever conceal, and never reveal any of the arts, parts, or points of the hidden mysteries of Ancient Free Masonry, which may have been, or hereafter shall be, at this time, or any future period, conununicated to me, as such, to any person or persons whomsoever, except it be to a true and lawful brother Mason, or in a regularly constituted Lodge of Masons; nor unto them until, by strict trial, due examination, or lawful information, I shall have found him, or them, as lawfully entitled to the same as I am myself. I furthermore promise and swear that I will not print, paint, stamp, stain, cut, carve, mark or engrave them, or cause the same to be done, on any thing movable or immovable, capable of receiving the least impression of a word, syllable, letter, or character, whereby the same may become legible or intelligible to any person under the canopy of heaven, and the secrets of Masonry thereby unlawfully obtained through my unworthiness.
"All this I most solenmly promise and swear, with a firm and steadfast resolution to perform the same, without any mental reservation or secret evasion of mind whatever, binding myself under no less penalty than that of having my throat cut across, my tongue torn out by its roots, and my body buried in the rough sands of the sea, at low water mark, where the tide ebbs and flows twice in twenty-four hours, should I ever knowingly violate this my Entered Apprentice obligation. So help me God, and keep me steadfast in the due performance of the same."
More than 150-years-ago, former President John Quincy Adams, commenting on Freemasonry, said it was "vicious in its first step, the initiation oath, obligation an penalty of the Entered Apprentice" degree. He opposed the oaths because they are: extra-judicial and contrary to the laws of the land; violate Christ's precept to "swear not at all;" impose a commitment to keep undefined secrets unknown to the person swearing the oath; impose a penalty of death for violation of the oath; and prescribe a mode of death that is "cruel, unusual and unfit for utterance form human lips."
The Entered Apprentice oath is, of course, the first of many oaths Masons voluntarily agree to utter. Moreover, the punishments threatened become increasingly severe as the initiate progresses through the various degrees.
From the outset, the new Mason learns that almost none of the Craft's teachings originated with Christianity, but rather in "China, four thousand years ago," and in the "priesthood of ancient Egypt, and the Jews of the Captivity."
Repeatedly, his attention is directed toward the Mystery Religions; to the fact that early man "found God in nature," and is told of the ceremonies of ancient Egypt, the mysteries of Eleusis, and the rites of Mithras.
The nascent Mason immediately learns that the Masonic attraction for the feast of St. John the Baptist (June 24), and St. John the Evangelist (December 27) has nothing to do with Christianity, but refer to the summer and winter pagan festivals of the sun.
He is subtly reminded to forget his early religious upbringing because his initiation "is an analogy of man's advent from prenatal darkness into the light of human fellowship, moral truth, and spiritual faith. Masonic initiation, he is informed, is an "opportunity for spiritual rebirth."
Again, the neophyte Mason is warned that he has become affiliated with a strange organization which literally sets itself apart from the rest of society. He is told the lodge "is a world unto itself; a world within a world, different in its customs, its laws, and its structure from the world without..."
One does not have to be elevated to the 32nd Degree to understand that Masonry holds unique religious beliefs that are totally contrary to conventional religion.
On pages 50 and 51 of his handbook, a thoughtful Apprentice Mason will understand that Man is God. This is made clear as the booklet develops the thought that beautiful stone statues are created simply by knocking away with hammer and chisel the stone that is not needed from the statue that was in the rock "all the time." He is reminded: "The kingdom of heaven is within you," and man "is made in the image of God." In the very next sentence the new Mason is instructed to recall the analogy of the sculpted statue, which is produced simply by "a process of taking away" to reveal the "perfection…already within."
A moment's serious thought will tell the Apprentice Craftsman that the Grand Architect who shapes the Universe is not God of the Old and New Testaments, but MAN—"the perfect man and Mason," who, until he was shaped from a "rough stone" to become a "perfect stone," had concealed his image as God by the excresencees of religious beliefs and familial and national loyalties. Heaven is not above, it is within the Masonic man, who has the ability to create Heaven on earth.
As he moves up the Masonic ladder, the candidate for the Second (Fellow Craft) Degree makes the following commitment:
"… binding myself under no less penalty than of having my breast torn open, my heart plucked out, and placed on the highest pinnacle of the temple there to be devoured by the vultures of the air, should I ever knowingly violate the the Fellow Craft obligation…"
In the Third Degree (Master Mason), the candidate is threatened
"… under no less penalty than that of having my body severed in two, my bowels taken from thence and burned to ashes, the ashes scattered before the four winds of heaven, that no more remembrance might be had of so vile and wicked a wretch as l would be, should I ever knowingly violate this my Master Mason's obligations…"
The Master Elect of the Fifteen (Tenth Degree) says:
"… I consent to have my body opened perpendicularly, and to be exposed for eight hours in the open air, that the venomous flies may eat of my entrails, my head to be cut off and put on the highest pinnacle of the world, and I will always be ready to inflict the same punishment on those who shall disclose this degree and break this obligation… "
The Knight Kadosh (30th) Degree symbolizes the Fraternity's raging battle against Church and State. The Grand Master approaches a table on which are three skulls. One is adorned with a papal tiara, a second wears a regal crown, and the third is festooned with a laurel wreath. The Grand Master stabs the skull with the papal tiara, as the candidate repeats: "Down with Imposture! Down with crime!" The Master and the candidate then kneel before the skull adorned with the laurel leaf and say: "Everlasting glory to the immortal martyr of virtue." Passing to the crowned skull, the pair chant: "Down with tyranny! Down with crime!"
The candidate takes a second oath to "strive unceasingly… for the overthrow of superstition, fanaticism, imposture and intolerance."
He takes a third oath in which he accepts and consents "to undergo the sentence which may be pronounced against me by this dreaded tribunal, which I hereby acknowledge as my Supreme Judge."
The fourth oath taken as a Knight Kadosh focuses again on the "cruel and cowardly Pontiff, who sacrificed to his ambition the illustrious order of those Knights Templar of whom we are the true successors." Then all present trample upon the papal tiara, as they shout: "Down with imposture."
In the 31st Degree, the candidate agrees that the Masonic ideal of justice "is more lofty than the actualities of God."
The 32nd Degree teaches that "Masonry will eventally rule the world."
Early in their service to the Craft, the Brethren learn the art of symbolism is crucial to carrying on the Fraternity's work in a profane world. One Mason said all words used in Masonry are symbolic, and the initiate must learn "the symbolic meaning of true religion…of true philosophy, true morality and true brotherhood."
Another Craftsman said a full understanding of Masonic symbols "can only be obtained by a study of Eastern mysticism—Cabbalistic, Pythogorean, and such."
In 1968 the Brotherhood was informed:
"The symbolism of Masonry has many shades of interpretation which each Mason must evaluate for himself in accordance with his own individual nature. Masonic rituals are the `idioms' of an ancient symbolic language, a language which expresses ideas, more so than words. It is said the seven magical keys conceal the innermost secrets of Freemasonry within the volume of Sacred lore upon the Masonic altar. These sacred truths are variously interpreted by different individuals within the Lodge.
"… .Each Mason on the journey of exploring life through Masonic Ritual finds his Truth.
* * *
"The Freemason, the ritualist, is the all-inclusive manipulator of nature's finer forces within himself.
"Freemasonry is much more than an exact ritual alone. It is also an exact formula through which we together, but differently, may be enabled to make progress, slowly but surely… "
One authority on the Fraternity said symbolism attracts the Masonic candidate and fascinates the initiated. It trains Masons to consider the existing institutions—religious, political and social—as passing phases of human evolution. It also allows the Craft to conceal its real purposes.
Father Hermann Gruber noted that the Great Architect of the Universe and the Bible are of utmost importance to the Brotherhood, because symbols are explained and accepted by each Mason according to his own understanding.
The official organ or Italian Masonry, for example, emphasized the Great Architect as representing the revolutionary God of Mazzini, the Satan of Carducci, God as the fountain of love, or Satan, the genius of the good, not the bad. In reality, the German Jesuit observed, Italian Masonry in those interpretations was adoring the principle of Revolution.
Typical of that revolutionary orientation within Masonry are the initials I.N.R.I. Inscribed on the Crucifix above Christ's head, they mean to the Christian: Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews. But in Masonic symbolism they stand for Igne Natura Renovatur Integr—-Entire Nature Is Renovated By Fire.
It is important to note also that a substantial portion of Masonic communication is passed from "mouth to ear." As one Craftsman observed: "One of the principai avenues for keeping Masonry active is the manner of instruction from mouth to ear, from generation to generation."
Masonry and the Media
Masonry obviously wields enormous influence in world media. Historian Mildred Headings said Masons influenced at least 47 periodicals throughout France, off and on, during the late 19th and early 20th Centuries.
In the United States, in 1920, the Scottish Rite established a news service for "furnishing accurate and gratuitous information to newspapers."
In 1924, the Grand Commander informed "the activities of our state organizations, the New Age Magazine, our clip service and News Bureau, we are stimulating the public interest and furnishing much valuable material to speakers and writers, and thereby can reasonably claim much credit for the growing interest in favor of compulsory education by the state."
Two years later, the Grand Commander was able to report to the Brethren: "… it is safe to claim that the majority of daily publications seem very friendly in their attitude toward the Craft."
It was not only small town newspapers which looked with approval on the Fraternity's activities. The New Age reported that "many members of the National Press Club are Masons, not a few of them very prominent Masons."
Also it was noted that a number of Christian Science officials have been Masons, and the Christian Science Monitor "devotes considerable space to Masonic activities throughout the world." Indeed, during the 1930s, the Monitor ran a regular colunm regarding Freemasonry's routine activities.
Prominent Masons in the media included: Charles P. Taft, founder and publisher of the Cincinatti Times Star; Roy W. Howard, chairman of Scripps-Howard newspapers, United Press, and Newspaper Enterprise Association (NEA); Ogden Reid, editor of the New York Herald Tribune; Richard H. Amberg, publisher of the St. Louis Globe Democrat; and James G. Stahlman, president of the Nashville Banner. In 1987, The Wall Street Journal published an editorial castigating Senator Patrick Leahy (D., Vt.) for questioning Masonry's segregation on policies in connection with membership in the Fraternity by a prospestive judicial candidate Judge David Sentelle. The editorial stated:
"The problem is that Sen. Leahy's smoking gun is loaded with blanks. One phone call could have told Sen. Leahy that the Masons don't discriminate againist blacks. The Masonic Services Association in Washington, D.C., says membership is open 'without regard to race, color or religion'. Blacks founded their own lodges a century ago, but now many belong to predominately white lodges, as Judge Sentelle said.
"The group also provides a membership list. This includes George Washington, both Roosevelts, Harry Truman, a total of 15 of 40 presidents. Eight of nine justices who signed Brown v Board of Education were Masons, including Earl Warren and William Douglas. About 75 congressmen also belong, including liberal Sens. Robert Byrd (W. Va. Mountain Lodge No. 156), Mark Hatfield Oregon Pacific Lodge No. 50) and Arlen Specter (Pa. E. Coppe Mitchell Lodge No. 605).
The author wrote a letter to the Journal the next day to say the editorial was "wide of the mark." The letter continued by making the followving points:
"The fact is a basic Masonic 'landmark' (which cannot be repealed) stipulates that only men who are neither crippled, slaves, nor born in slavery are eligible for membership in the Masonic Fraternity. The latter criterion has excluded Negroes from regular Masonry, and prompted them to form their own 'clandestine' branch, known as Prince Hall Masonry, to which Justice Thurgood Marshall belongs."
The ietter also noted that the Senator's challenge must be an historic first "or at least the first such legislative challenge to Masonic philosophy since the early l9th century" when committees of the legislatures of New York, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts found Masonry to be a distinct threat to both government and religion.
It also was observed that similar findings have been published over 200 times by various Popes beginning in 1738. Moreover, the letter recalled that many other Christian denominations have similarly indicted Freemasonry, as has Scotland Yard. In conclusion, The letter said:
"Indeed, between 1941-1971, the Supreme Court was dominated by Masons in ratios ranging from 5 to 4 (1941-1946; 1969-1971) to 8 to 1 (1949-1956). During that 30-year-period, the Court erected "a wall" separating things religious from things secular. It was an epoch when prayer and Bible reading were derascinated from public education and when decision after decision succeeded in prohibiting any State financial assistance to religious schools.
"Despite the facade of prominent national personalities who are boasted of by the Craft, as well as parades, circuses and hospitals, Masons have succeeded in having their religion dominate American society."
Although the letter contained information that is little known to the public at large, it was never published; however, its receipt at the Journal was acknowledged privately to the writer.
Almost two months later, The Washington Times ran an "op-ed" piece on the same subject, which argued in support of Masonry along lines almost identical to the position set forth earlier by the Journal. The article was written by a man named Blair Dornmey, a Washington, D.C. attorney and free-lance writer who was identified as a non-Mason.
On the very day the article appeared, this writer sent a letter to editor of the Times to make (more briefly) the same points as were made in response to the Journal's editorial. Again, although receipt of the letter was acknowledged, it was never published.
Of course, editors are free to choose which letters to print, but it seems strange that both the Journal and the Times base their arguments largely on what a Masonic organization says about its own Fraternity, and fail to report the known history of the Brotherhood or facts set forth in counter arguments which are readily verifiable.
And so men are attracted to Masonry by its favorable public image and by knowing they are Brothers with Presidents, statesmen, justices, Congressmen, Senators, prime ministers, generals, admirals, captains of industry, journalists and other shapers and molders of history. Yet, some become disillusioned and separate themselves from the Craft, only to find Masons often "retaliate against members who quit by trying to get them fired from their jobs and otherwise harassing them." Several former members of the Fraternity said they moved from their residences after leaving the lodge, and some asked that their names not be used by newspaper reporters because they feared reprisals.
One former Mason called attention to the oath of a Master Mason, which says in part:
"I furthermore promise and swear that I will not cheat, wrong or defraud a Lodge of Master Masons, or a brother of this degree . . . I swear that I will not violate the chastity of a Master Mason's wife, his mother, sister or daughter, knowing them to be such… "
Anokan Reed, a former top-level York Rite Mason pointed to the morality of such oath by commenting: "It's OK to seduce another man's daughter, or steal his car, as long as he's not a Master Mason…In the higher degrees, Masons deny the reality of evil."
Reed, a former 13th Degree York Rite member, said he joined a lodge in Kokomo, Indiana when he was in his 20s, because his boss, a Mason, guaranteed he would "move up in the steel mill" if he joined. After becoming a Mason, Reed was promoted to a supervisory position, for which, he admits, he was not qualified.
The former York Rite Mason moved from Kokomo to avoid harassment after being expelled from the Fraternity for challenging the Craft's secrecy.
Masonry And Politics
Writing of Freemasonry's dominance of the public life of France during the Third Republic (1870-1940), historian Mildred Headings, said the Fraternity established a firm and determined policy that nothing should occur in that country "without the hidden, secret participation of Masonry."
With that goal in mind, the Craft made a concerted effort to have as many Masons as possible in parliament, the ministries, and in other official capacities. As a result, "the public power, the national power [was] directed by Masons."
To demonstrate the political power of Masonry in France during that period, Ms. Headings noted that in 1912, for example, 300 of the 580 members of the House of Deputies (52.7 percent) were Freemasons, as were 180 of 300 Senators (60 percent).
What of the United States? The preceding pages of this book have disclosed how Masonry dominated public policy in a number of individual States, and, nationally, through the Nativist, Know-Nothing, APA, and Ku Klux Klan Movements. But if Masonic dominance of the national legislature is used as a criterion for the strength of Freemasonry in France, the same criterion applied to Masonic membership in the United States Congress shows the Fraternity's control of public life on this side of the Atlantic has been much more pronounced than in France.
In 1923, for example, 300 of 435 members of the U.S. House of Representatives (69 percent) were members of the Craft, as were 30 of 48 members of the U.S. Senate (63 percent). Six years later, 67 percent of the entire U.S. Congress was comprised of members of the Masonic Brotherhood.
Although Masons continued to hold a dominant position in the House and Senate in 1941, their proportion of the total membership dropped to 53 percent in the Senate and 54 percent in the House. In 1957, a "typical" member of the 85th Congress was a Mason.
Subsequently, Congressional membership in the Masonic Fraternity seemed to be less pronounced, so that by 1984, for instance, only 14 Senators (14 percent) identified themselves as members of the Craft, as did 51 House members.
Those figures, however, are not entirely accurate, because some public figures do not always announce their membership in the Craft. Typical of such coy Masons in public life is Congressman Jack F. Kemp (R., N.Y). The former football star and Presidential candidate does not list his Masonic affiliation in the biographical sketch he provided for the 1983-1984 Official Congressional Directory; nor does it appear in the routine curriculm vitae handed out by his office. However, the Buffalo News reported in 1986 that Rep. Kemp is "a member of Fraternal Lodge, F&AM, in Hamburg, New York; a member of Palmoni Lodge of Perfection, 14th Degree; Palmoni Council, Princes of Jerusalem, 16th Degree; Buffalo Chapter of Rose Croix, 18th Degree; and Buffalo Consistory, 32nd Degree." In September, 1987, the Supreme Council of the Scottish Rite of the Northern Jurisdiction singled him out to receive the 33rd Degree of that Rite in Boston in September, 1987.
But it has not been the Legislative Branch alone in the United States which has been subjected to strong Masonic influence. The Craft's control of the Supreme Court already has been explored; and although Masonry's authority has not been as pronounced in the Executive Branch as in the two others, the secret Brotherhood has had good representation among Chief Executives Fifteen of 39 Presidents have been members of the Craft,some of whom have been more ardent in their attachment to the Fraternity than others.
In addition to George Washington and Andrew Johnson, among more recent Presidents who have been Masons are Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry S. Truman, Lyndon B. Johnson and Gerald R. Ford.
Of Roosevelt, the Grand Lodge of New York remarked in its official publication that if world Masonry ever comes into being, historians will give much credit to the period when Franklin Delano Roosevelt was President.
President Harry Truman, a Past Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Missouri, was quoted as saying: "Although I hold the highest civil honor in the world, I have always regarded my rank and title as a Past Grand Master of Masons as the greatest honor that has ever come to me."
Following President Truman's death in 1972, the Scottish Rite Grand Commander hailed the Missouri-born Chief Executive as "a devoted son" of the Fraternity, and "the first President of the United States to have been coroneted an Inspector General Honorary of the Thirty-third Degree (1945)."
Masons serving in Cabinet posts under President Roosevelt were Henry Morganthau, Secretary of the Treasury; Homer Cummings and Robert H. Jackson (later a Supreme Court Justice), Attorneys-General; Daniel Roper and Jesse Jones, Secretaries of Commerce; George Dern, Secretary of War; and Claude Swanson and Frank Knox, Secretaries of Navy.
Among Masons in President Truman's Cabinet were James F. Byrnes and George C. Marshall, Secretaries of State; Tom Clark, Attorney General (and later Supreme Court Justice); Fred Vinson, Secretary of Treasury (and later Chief Justice); Louis Johnson, Secretary of Defense; Clinton Anderson, Secretary of Agriculture; and Henry Wallace, Secrtary of Commerce. Mr. Wallace also served as Vice President during Franklin D. Roosevelt's third term.
During World War II, under both Presidents Roosevelt and Truman the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General George C. Marshall; the Commander of the U.S. Fleet, Admiral Ernest King; and the Chief of the U.S. Army Air Corps, General Henry H. Arnold—were all members of the Masonic Fraternity.
Freemasons serving under President Dwight D. Eisenhower (a non-Mason) were Sherman Adams, his Chief of Staff; Christian Herter, Secretary of State; Douglas McKay, Secretary of Interior; and Robert B. Anderson, Secretary of Treasury.
The Fraternity's Disguised Power
It must be emphasized that many members of the Fraternity do not disclose their Masonic affiliation, as Congressman Kemp's curriculum vitae indicates. That aspect of the Craft's operations was made clear in a 1962 New Age editorial, which said:
"That a man is a Mason is something only another Mason can know, and the secret of the Master Mason can be simply and subtly communicated amongst eavesdroppers without the slightest awareness of non-Masons. [It] is [part of] the continuing and ancient charm of the age-old rituals and rites."
The same editorial said: "Masons set the basic policies of our society. Yet the order is not political, and its purposes are not public. It is religious… "
And one member of the Craft pointed out that there are at least 160 organizations (which he did not identify) that require their members to also be initiates into the Masonic Fraternity.
In 1948, the New Age boasted that some ten million adults were linked directly, or were indirectly associated with the nation's three million Master Masons. The Scottish Rite publication estimated that "between one in five and one in 10 of the adult thinking population come directly within the circle of Masonic influence… "
A candid statement on Masonry's dedication to imposing its philosophy on the nation, often through men who hold positions of national leadership, was set forth two years later by a high-ranking member of the Brotherhood. He said:
"Any teaching which is completely antagonistic to all that we consider sacred, in religion, in morals and in government, is subversive of those fundamentals, and on them we depend for our very existence as a Craft. Our first duty, therefore, becomes one of self preservation, which includes defense of those principles for which we stand and by which we live. This duty cannot be discharged by complete silence on the subject, and this view, it is encouraging to note, is today shared by most of those who speak Masonically in the United States."
Significantly, the writer concluded by noting that some men who were leading The Nation at that time were also "leaders of the Craft." He declared :
"This nation was nurtured on the ideals of Freemasonry;… most of those who are today its leaders are also members and leaders of the Craft. They know that our American Democracy, with its emphasis on the inalienable rights and liberties of the individual, is Freemasonry in Government… "
Perhaps typical of how leaders of the Craft work within the government was the cancelation in 1955 by the Senate Judiciary Committee of a hearing to openly explore and discuss the real meaning of the relgion clause of the First Amendment. It is possible such a hearing might have been considered discussion of a teaching which is completely antagonisitic to all that consider sacred.
At any rate, the New Age reported that the Senate committee had announced in August that it would commence hearings on the religion clause of the First Amendment beginning October 3. The Masonic publication also made clear that it was opposed to such hearings. Subsequently, the magazine reported: "On September 30, hasty announcement was made by the Chairman of the subcommittee, Sen. Thomas C. Hennings, Jr., of Missouri, that public hearings on the religion clause would be postponed."
The late Sen. Hennings was a 33rd Degree Mason.
In 1960, the Grand Commander related how the federal government was used to help consolidate two lodges in Italy into one Supreme Council. The situation developed as a result of Italian dictator Benito Mussolini taking over the Masonic Temple in Rome. Following his assassination, the Temple's ownership passed to the Italian government, a transaction upheld by Italian courts. The courts also ruled that the Italian Masons owed 100 miiiion lire in interest and back rent.
U.S. Masons organized American Friends for Justice for Italian Freemasonry, under the leadership of Admiral William H. Standley. A deadline for payment of the 100 million lire was set for February 18, 1960; however, "a sympathetic hearing" was given to the U.S. Masons by Secretary of State Christian Herter, a 33rd Degree Mason," and the deadline was extended 90 days. Moreover, while the Temple remained in the possession of the Italian government, Masons were given the right to certain portions of the building for 20 years, beginning in July, 1960. The 100 million lire debt was reduced by four-fifths, so the Craft was required to pay only 20 million at the rate of 1 million per year for two decades.
Secretary Herter received the Gourgas Medal of Masonry, which is awarded by the Fraternity "in recognition of notably distinguished service in the cause of Freemasonry, humanity or country."
In 1976, the Grand Commanders of the Scottish Rite bodies of the Southern and Northern Jurisdictions honored a number of the Masonic Congressmen. During the ceremonies it was made clear that "much credit must go to the Brethren in governmental positions." It was also stated "that good, dedicated, patriotic men can determine the fate of a nation and contribute to the fulfillment of Freemasonry's high ideals."
Among the Fraternity's "high ideals" is prohibiting government support to children attending religious educational institutions. In that regard, a Washington newspaper colunm ran two items which were separated in time by eight months, but clearly reflect how Masonry's agenda can be acomplished within the government even if the President of the United States seems to hold a contrary view.
The unsigned column, "Alice in Potomac Land," reported on April 5, 1983:
"Not many lobbyists have the ability to alter public policy like Timmons and company. Its top dogs, Bill Timmons and Tom Korologos, are not only veterans of the Nixon/Ford Administrations, but also helped the Reaganites in the 1980 campaign. They have the luxury of picking and choosing their clients. So, when they move into the area of family issues, you you that more is afoot than a [Sen.] Jesse Helms filibuster…
"And then word reached us that Timmons has been using his old contacts at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue to bring about a meeting between President Reagan and Henry Clausen, the head of the Masonic Order. The purpose of the chat is to talk the Old Man out of his support for tuition tax credits, which the Masons adamantly oppose. "
Just over eight months later, on December 13, 1983, the same column ran the following item:
"Those folks who were active in the fight for tuition tax credits said all along that White House legislative affairs director Ken Duberstein didn't have his heart in the struggle, even though his boss, the President was leading the charge. Now they think they know why. Mr. Duberstein is leaving the administration to join Timmons and Co., the high-powered lobbying firm. Conservatives feel that Mr. Duberstein was so intent on moving out of government into the big bucks that he didn't want to risk his marketability by twisting arms for conserative causes."
The Military And Masonry
The Masonic Fraternity has been working within military units for many years. The officer cadre of Masonry in the armed forces is known as the Sojourners Club.
However, the Craft recognizes that secret organizations uncontrolled by the military itself are not looked upon favorably by military commanders. In that regard, one Craftsman noted that lodges have been closed "owing to the disapproval of military authorities."
The same source suggested one method of enhancing acceptance of a Masonic lodge within the military is to appoint officials, such as regimental commanders, as First Masters of Regimental Lodges.
An example of penetrating military organizations with Masonic philosophy was discussed in a 1945 New Age editorial. The item concerned the California College in China, formerly of Peiping, but operating in "exile" in California. The editor said:
"This is one of the educational institutions to the support of which the Supreme Council Southern Jurisdiction contributes. W.B. Pettus, 33rd Degree, who is connected with the college, writes: 'Many of us in California College in China do not forget… that our college Foundation here in this state really had its beginning in the Scottish Rite Temple in Los Angeles'."
The editorial continued by noting the "wartime object" of the College:
". . .it is important that the officers of the Army and Marine Corps should be trained for their service in the Far East in institutions guided by similar principles which accord with those things for which our Scottish Rite stands. This is true of California College in China, and I am glad that during 1945 we are to be training some 360 officers of the Army, and a comparable number of Intelligence officers of the Marine Corps."
Another sobering 1968 report concerned a group of 17 West Point graduates who, one month before being commissioned second lieutenants, were "obligated" as "soldier Masons…to carry out our [i.e., Masonry's] ideals in Vietnam."
The ceremony of obligation was attended by 457 people (135 had to be turned away), and the principal speaker was Lt. General Herman Nickerson, 33rd Degree, Chief of Staff for Manpower and Director of Personnel of the U. S. Marine Corps.
The report gave no indication whether "Masonry's ideals in Vietnam" were the same as those of the United States. For an organization that has long been identified as "a State within the State," a fomenter of revolutions, and the successor-custodian of the Mystery Religions, it was a rather significant omission.
America has lost its way.
And it has done so, as the preceding pages have documented, through the determined and protracted efforts of an international secret society which has largely operated as "a state within a state."
The late historian Christopher Dawson wrote: "The great civilisations of the world do not produce the great religions as a kind of byproduct; in a very real sense, the great religions are the foundations on which the great civilisations rest."
To a great extent, the United States, in its art and architecture, its morals and music, and in its national and foreign policies, impresses many as a civilization in decline. And the argument is here made that this is happening because the fundamental Christian ethic which shaped The Nation is being rapidly eroded. The body politic is largely sustained by the lingering fragrance of an abandoned Faith.
But the record shows the vast majority of the American people did not voluntarily abandon their Christian vitality: it was taken away them by a series of artificially grounded decisions concerning the religion clause of the First Amendment at a time when the Court was dominated by Justices who were Freemasons.
One of those men, Justice Hugo L. Black, was a member not only of the militantly anti-Catholic and anti-Christian Masonic Order, but of its adjunct, the notorious Ku Klux Klan.
Moreover, he is known to have expressed his interest in "advancing liberal religion," could "not tolerate any sign of encouraging religious faith by state aid," and initiated a campaign to have the Masonic Fraternity support legislation which would aid public schools only.
The Masonic Fraternity immersed itself in a relentless attack on government practices which suggested minimal accommodation of traditional religions. The Craft did so by by bringing before the courts case after case challenging these various aspects of minimal State toleration of and cooperation with traditional religious practices. It was Supreme Court decisions on those cases which eroded the Christian patina that was a hallmark of the United States.
The evidence set forth in this book has only scratched the surface of the Masonic iceberg which threatens the bark of Peter and the Ship of State.
The remarkable thing is the State—which is mandated to "insure domestic tranquility…promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity"—has been seriously derelict in challenging Masonic rule in America.
Repeatedly, the Masonic Fraternity has been found to be dangerous to Church and State. These findings have been made and publicized by numerous Popes, heads of State, several legislatures, various church denominations, and Scotland Yard. Yet, the United States Government which has the authority and the ability to investigate this secret world-wide organization—an anachronism in a free and open society—has studiously failed to investigate the Craft or to question its initiates who serve in key positions in government.
In 1921, a leading newspaper, The World (New York), after concluding a 20-part series on the danger of the Ku Klux Klan (which was closely identified with Masonry) worried about the Klan's secret oath, an oath which demanded "unconditional obedience to the as yet unknown constitution and laws, regulations.…of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan."
The newspaper also was disturbed by the "rigid secrecy" imposed on Klan members "even in the face of death."
The World said it "has always in mind the potential danger to the United States from a secret organization bound together by such an oath…and likely to draw into its ranks men of [sic] no regard for anything but the Ku Klux law and standards of conduct and ethics."
The Fact is, Freemasonry also has secret, blood-curdling oaths, and demands of its initiates "unconditional obedience to the as yet unknown constitution and laws, regulations" of the Craft.
Almost immediately after that article appeared, the Rules Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives conducted several days of hearings on the activities of the Klan, at which The World's editor was the first witness. However, the hearings were suddenly concluded following a proposal by a member of Congress to investigate all secret societies which, of course, would have included the Freemasons.
In 1923, the State of New York approved a statute which said, in part, every membership corporation and association, "having a membership of twenty or more persons, which corporation or association requires an oath as a a prerequisite or condition of membership…shall file…a sworn copy of its constitution, by-laws, rules, regulations and oath of membership, together with a roster of its membership and a list of its officers for the current year… "
Another section of the same law stipulated that any person who joined such a group or remained a member, with knowledge that the entity "failed to comply with any provisions of this article, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor."
The Freemasons, Grand Army of the Republic, the Odd Fellows (a Masonic adjunct) and the Knights of Columbus were exempt from the legislation.
The Klan, of course, objected to the law. They argued that the statuts deprived them of liberty, under the due process clause, in that it prevented them from exercising their right of membership and association.
The Court responded that "membership in the association…must yield to the rightful exertion of the police power."
Continuing, the Court said: "There can be no doubt that under that power, the State may prescribe and apply to associations having an oath-bound membership any reasonable regulation calculated to confine their purposes and activities within limits which are consistent with the rights of others and the public welfare."
The information mandated by the law to be furnished "will operate as an effective or substantial deterrent from the violations of public and private right to which the association might be tempted if such a disclosure were not required."
Regarding the requirement that the Klan register and have its activities examined, the Court said the State "May direct its law against what it deems the evil as it actually exists without covering the whole field of possible abuses."
As for specifically excluding the Masons and Knights of Columbus, the Court said: "These organizations and their purposes are well known, many of them having been in existence for many years. Many of them are oath-bound and secret. But we hear no complaints against them regarding violation of the peace or interfering with the rights of others."
Of course, the secret work of Masonry is not at all "well known," but the long history of complaints against it by such respected sources as numerous Popes, heads of State and various legislatures should suggest that a thorough investigation of the Craft clearly is in order.
In a minority opinion in the New York Supreme Court's Appellant Division, Judge Davis noted that the Masons are "bitterly assailed and charged with all sorts of crimes and delinquencies," but that "natural moderation and good sense" prevailed, and "no legislation was required in the interest of public safety or welfare to suppress" Masonry.
At the same time, Judge Davis conceded that there "can be no doubt that societies having principles subversive to the government or peace and good order may be banned and their members forbidden to meet."
This book has offered substantial data which demonstrate that Masonry is a society "having principles subversive to the government or peace and good order" of The Nation and of those citizens who wish to freely exercise their religion.
Scottish Rite Masonry's Grand Philosopher, Albert Pike, in his magnum opus, Morals and Dogma—which is given to each initiate into the Fourth Degree—makes this statement:
"Masonry teaches that the Present is our scene of action, and the Future for speculation and trust…[Man] is sent into this world not to be constantly hankering after dreaming of, preparing for another…
"The Unseen cannot hold a higher place in our affections than the Seen and the Familiar…
"Those only who have a deep affection for this world will work resolutely for its amelioration. Those who under-value this life naturally become querulous and discontented and lose their interest in the welfare of their fellows…
"The earth, to the Mason, is both the starting place and goal of immortality."
To indicate the type of mentality to which such a philosophy apeals, it is instructive to read how closely Brother Pike's sentiment was expressed some years later by a leader of another sinister organization. That man said:
"We don't want people who keep one eye on the life in the hereafter. We need free men who feel and know that God is in themselves."
The later statement was made by Adolph Hitler.
Obviously, the government, which alone has the ability to probe deeply into Masonry, will never challenge the Craft, because many members of Congress owe their seats to the Fraternity. However, the public can do something to neutralize the one organization that has lead the assault on the Christian religion, and has a long history of involvement in fomenting discord, dissension and revolution. Members of the public can:
- Conduct independent research into all aspects of Freemasonry by reading books about the Craft; searching libraries, lodges, attics, and government documents available through the Freedom of Information Act.
- Make membership in the Masonic Fraternity a criterion for assessing the qualifications and philosophy of candidates for public office.
- Urge State legislators as well as Congressmen and Senators to conduct public investigations of the Fraternity and expose its oaths, penalties and purposes.
- Insist that "secret societies" be subjected to scrutiny and that its records and membership be made available to the public.
- Demand to know why there must be "secrets" in an open society if an organization is merely a charitable and fraternal group.
Of critical importance is prayer. "For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood but against principalities and powers; against rulers of the world of darkness; against the spirits of wickedness in high places." (St. Paul's Letter to the Ephesians, 6: 12).
THE DEPTH OF GEORGE WASHINGTON'S MASONRY
Masons regularly allege that "the Father of our Country," President George Washington, was one of the most illustrious and active members of the Craft. However, the historic record indicates he only had tenuous ties to Masonry, probably because it was a potent political force in the 18th Century.
The subject became an issue in the 1970s when the Disabled American Veterans (DAV) distributed a booklet which stated that the nation's first President was "not a very active" member of the Fraternity. The DAV also suggested that Masonry attempts to capitalize on Washington's nominal membership to bring unwarranted merit to the international secret society.
The Grand Commander of the Scottish Rite of the Southern Jurisdiction attempted to rebut the Veteran's position, but his documentation, in reality, tended to confirm the DAV's charge.
The Scottish Rite chieftain noted that Washington became a Freemason at the Fredericksburg, Virginia Lodge on August 4, 1753, and visited that lodge later the same year, and again in 1755.
However, the Grand Commander's record shows that it was not until 1776—23 years later—that Washington participated in any Masonic activity. At that time, he marched in a Masonic procession in Philadelphia.
The following year, he celebrated "St. John's Day" with a military lodge in New York, and did the same thing later that year with a New Jersey military lodge.
[There are two "St. John's" Days. One ostensibly refers to St. John the Baptist (June 24), and the other, St. John the Apostle and Evangelist (Dec. 27). Actually, in Masonry the days refer to solar worship and represent the summer and winter solstices, when the sun is at its greatest distance from the celestial equator—a turning point.]
Continuing his catalogue of Washington's purported devotion to the Masonic Fraternity, the Grand Commander cited brief visits by the President to various lodges, and incidents when he simply walked in Masonic processions on five separate occasions between 1781 and 1797.
It was also noted that numerous communications from Masons proposed that Washington receive various awards and commendations.
The Grand Commander called attention to the Alexandria, Virginia Lodge receiving a painting of the First President executed by William Williams of Philalelphia, on order of the Alexandria Lodge, a portrait for which Washington sat.
With regard to that situation, the Founding Father, responding by letter, dated July 3, 1792, to a request from Governor Henry Lee of Virginia that the President sit for a portrait, Washington said he was "heartily tired" of sitting for portraits, and had "resolved to sit for no more of them…except in instances where it has been requested by public bodies…and could not, without offense, be refused."
Williams had been refused a sitting by Washington, and subsequently offered the Alexandria Lodge the finished portrait of the President if the Masons would request the President to sit for the artist.
The Lodge approved the proposal on August 29, 1793, and the portrait was completed at Philadelphia in September, 1794. It now is proudly displayed by the Alexandria Lodge.
See: The Grand Commander's Message: "Exposing The Debunkers," New Age, February, 1973, pp. 2-11.
The Writings of George Washington, op. cit., volume 32, p. 93, note 59.
THE ANCIENT MYSTERIES
For more than one-thousand years, the Mystery Religions were familiar in the ancient Mediterranean world. In the Graeco-Roman region, they dominated from the invasion of the East by Alexander the Great in 334 B.C. until Constantine, the first Christian emperor, founded Constantinople in 327 A.D.
These cults—of which Masonry is the modern day successor—were predicated upon Gnosticism, a belief in a spurious "knowledge" of the origin, control and destiny of the universe. This "knowledge" supposedly originated in Egypt or Chaldea, and was handed down through an ancient message transmitted secretly by a chain of initiates.
Th "mysteries" are for a select few, who were bound by solenm oaths not to reveal the cult's rites, These religions were strongly opposed by the early Church as "strange doctrines" and "myths" that "come from the devils." In his First Letter to Timothy, St. Paul urged the Church under his jurisdiction to have "nothing to do with the pointless philosophical discussions and antagonistic beliefs of the 'knowledge' [i.e., Gnosticism] which is not knowledge at all."
Actually, as St. Paul noted in his Letter to the Colossians, the "Mysteries" were distorted shadows of the the real "mystery" hidden for the ages and generations: the reality of Christ, the Redeemer and Savior promised long ago to mankind, who offers salvation to all men who believe in Him [Col. 2:6-18].
Charles Heckethorn, in his penetrating analysis of secret societies, noted that in prehistoric times man possessed a true knowledge of nature and her workings. That is why the "mysteries' of the most distant nations had so much in common. The common knowledge among different races and peoples was transmated from a common source.
Heckethorn said this prehistoric knowledge "was gradually distorted by perverse interpretations" and embroidered by fanciful creations of man's brain.
Originally, the sun, moon and stars were seen as outward manifestations of the power of the Eternal Life. However, the multitude was more interested in satisfying material wants and "hence arose the personification of the heavenly bodies and terrestrial seasons depending upon them." Gradually, the human figure, which originally had been a symbol, came to be looked upon as the representation of an individual being that had actually lived upon earth. Thus was born Krishna, Fo, Osiris, Hermes, Hercules and other "divine" beings.
In all the "mysteries" there was a superior being who suffers death and recommences a more glorious existence. Everywhere there is a grand event of mourning followed immediately by the most lively joy. Moreover, the doctrine of the Unity and Trinity was common to all ancient doctrines, as was the "prototype of the Christian dogma in which a virgin is seen bringing forth a Savior, and yet remaining a virgin." To the primitive people that mystery is seen as Virgo in the Zodiac, and the "savior" brought forth is the Sun
Also, in all the "mysteries," light was represented as born out of darkness—thus Kali, Isis, Ceres, Proserpine, represent the night from whose bosom issues life, and into which the life returns.
The cross, too, in all the mysteries, symbolized purification and salvation.
These various aspects of the "mystsries," as St. Paul noted, particularly the common theme of a "Savior," demonstrate a faint glimmering of the truth of Divine revelation which was revealed by Jesus Christ.
Another aspect of the "mysteries" included a requirement that candidates for membership pass through seven caves or ascend seven steps, or be transported through the seven planet—-a theme which is a reflected in modern Masonic initiations
One Mason observed that the religious symbols painted upon the walls and tombs of ancient Egypt tend to make a Freemason "almost believe he is witnessing a scene at an initiation," as he notices the apron, grips, signs, postures and symbols and other features common to Masonic lodges so vividly displayed.
Another member of the Craft said Sun worship "was the foundation from which has been gradually elaborated the various mysteries and cults which gave us Masonry as we find it today."
This same source said the cults of Dionysus or Bacchus developed from phallic worship. That cult held speculative and secret opinion; of the unity of God and immortality of the soul. It also had "signs and symbols and practices similar to those found in Freemasonry… "
The Phrygians worshiped the Magna Mater (the Great Mother), sometimes identified as Ma or Cybele, the fecund mother of all things. In the wild orgies of worship associated with that mystery religion, some devotees voluntarily wounded themselves and, becoming intoxicated with the view of blood, with which they sprinkled their altars, they believed they were uniting themselves with their divinity, others sacrificed their virility to the gods.
St. Augustine wrote that, as a young man, he "took pleasure in the shameful games which were celebrated in honor of the gods and goddesses," including Cybele. On the day consecrated to her purification, "there were sung before her couch productions so obscene and filthy for the ear…so impure, that not even the mother of the foulmouthed players themselves could have formed one of the audience:"
Continuing, he said, "the lewd actions and filthy words with which these players honoured the mother of the gods,…they could not for very shame have rehearsed at home in presence of their own mothers."
Effeminate men were consecrated to the Great Mother, and in the rites of Liber (the god of the seed of fruits and animals) the devotees worshiped "the private parts of a man."
During the ceremonial rites dedicated to the Great Mother, a young man stood beneath a platform upon which a steer was slaughtered and showered himself with the animal's blood. After the blood bath, the gore-covered mystic offered himself to the veneration of the crowd. The ceremony was known as the taurobolia. St Peter's Basilica in Rome stands on the very spot where the last taurobolia toke place at the end of the fourth century.
The Egyptian goddess Isis, was honored especially by "women with whom love was a profession." Juvenal referred to her as a procuress, and her temples "were frequented by young men in quest of gallant adventures."
The morals of the cult of Isis and Osiris were viewed by the Roman community at large as very loose, and the mystery surrounding it excited the worst suspicions. Additionally, its secret societies were suspected of easily becoming "clubs of agitators and haunts of spies."
Consequently, the Roman Senate had the altars dedicatedl to these mysteries torn down on five separate occasions, 59 B.C., 58 B.C., 53 B.C. and 48 B.C.
The celebrations associated with the worship of Isis included the "Finding of Osiris," a ceremony commonly used in Masonic initiations. In the ceremony, Osiris is killed by an opponent's attack, after which the former is buried. The attacker is vanquished by Horus, the son of Isis and Osiris, and the dead father is restored to life.
Astrology—a practice condenmed in both the Old and New Testament—-influenced the Mysteries of Mithra.
Persia introduced dualism as a fundamental principle of religion, and deified the evil principle. It was taught that both evil and the supreme deity must be worshiped. Also, Persian Mithraism preached absolute fidelity to its oaths. And like Masonry, it preached fraternity. "All the initiates considered themselves as sons of the same father owing to one another a brother's affection."
This dualism taught that the world is the scene of perpetual struggle between two powers that share mastery. The true believer was constantly in combat with evil in order to bring about the triumph of Ormuzd.
The Persian Mazdeans brought the dimension of magic to their rites and made their "mysteries" a reversed religion with a liturgy focused on the infernal powers. "There was no miracle the experienced magician might not expect to perform with the aid of demons.…Hence the number of impious practices performed in the dark, practices the horror of which is equaled only by their absurdity: preparing beverages that disturbed the senses and impaired the intellect; mixing subtle poisons extracted from demoniac plants and corpses already in the state of putridity; immolating children in order to read the future in their quivering entrails or to conjure up ghosts… "
These were some of the "Ancient Mysteries" about which Freemasons boast of being the modern successors.
These mysteries are based on myths. There never was a real Mithra, nor a Great Mother, nor an Isis nor Osiris.
That is why the "Mysteries" passed from the scene with the advent of Christianity. The new religion could boast of a Founder of unique holiness and power who actually lived among men and women. His teachings were new, arresting, different, and promised salvation not to the select few, but to all mankind.
The ethical ideals yearned for by men through the ages, and the Redeemer and Savior spoken of through unnumbered generations, became incarnated upon earth. True God and True Man entered history, and the world has not been the same since. Indeed, history is divided by all that happened in the world Before Christ and in the Years of Our Lord—B.C. and A.D.