The Stars We Think We See

Freemasonry contains many references to the heavens and few to the heavenly bodies, the sun, moon. and stars. A few words about the stars is therefore appropriate.

Any of us looking into the heavens on a clear night would say he saw millions of stars, and most of you may be astounded to be informed that we never actually see any of the stars we think we see. What we actually see are rays of light sent out by those stars. The stars themselves are so many thousands and millions and billions of miles away that the rays we see tonight were on their way to us not last night, or the night before that, or last week, or last month, or last year, or many years before that. Some rays that reach us tonight were on their way to us before Masonry was born. Some of the stars are so many billions of miles away that their rays have travelled day and night, at speeds of light, clear night and dark nights through generations, through centuries, through the rise and fall of nations, through the rise and fall of civilizations, since the birth of Christ, since before the first stones were laid for the Great White Temple which crowned Moriah's Mount, in order to reach us tonight and guide our feet on our way home from this meeting. If the stars were close enough to come within the range of our vision their brilliancy would destroy us.

Scientists tell us rays of light still are reaching us from stars that ceased to exist hundreds or thousand or even millions of years ago.

The life of a human is but a moment in the span of time it takes the twinkle of a star to reach us. We live by rays of light produced by stars that have ceased to exist. Masons live by rays of a Great Light produced twenty centuries ago, or more. Those who follow us will be guided by what we have done, and we who are here but a fraction of a moment, should hasten to start rays of masonic light on their way to brethren who shall live a century, or a hundred centuries, or a thousand centuries after we have ceased to exist.