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BOURBON, PRINCE LOUIS DE, COMTE DE CLERMONT.
A limit or boundary; a word familiar to the Freemason in the Monitorial Instructions of the Fellow Craft's Degree, where he is directed to remember that we are traveling upon the level of time to that undiscovered country from whose bourn no traveler returns; and to the reader of Shakespeare, from whom the expression is borrowed, in the beautiful soliloquy of Hamlet:
Who would fardels bear;
To grunt and sweat under a wearly life ;
But that the dread of something after death
The undiscovered country, from whose bourn
No traveller returns-puzzles the will.
Act III, Scene 1. Fardels here means burdens.
Sometimes in the Lodges of Scotland the Treasurer was formerly so called. Thus, in the Minutes of the Lodge of Journeymen Freemasons of Edinburgh, it was resolved, on December, 27, 1726, that the Warden be instructed "to uplift and receive for the use of the society a1l such sum or sums of money which are due and indebted to them or their former Box-masters or his predecessors in office."
BOX OF FRATERNAL ASSISTANCE.
A box of convenient shape and size under the charge of the Hospitaler or Almoner, in the Modern French and Scottish Rites, wherein is collected the obligatory contributions of the duly assembled Brethren at every convocation, which collections can only be used for secret charitable purposes, first among the members, but if not there reqilired, among worthy profane; the Master and the Hospitaler being the only ones cognizant of the name of the beneficiary, together with the Brother who suggests an individual in need of the assistance.
Grand Chaplain of Scotland.
May 8, 1843, delivered the oration on the death of the Duke of Sussex.
The Royal Masonic Institution for Boys is a charity of the Freemasons of England.
It was founded in the year 1798 by a number of Brethren belonging to the Antient Constitution who were members of the Lodge of United Mariners, No. 23, now No. 30. This benevolence was for clothing and educating the sons of indigent and deceased Brethren, according to the situation in life they are most probably destined to occupy, and inculcating such religious instruction as may be conformable to the tenets of their parents, and ultimately apprenticing them to suitable trades.
Brother Francis Columbine Daniel, of the Royal Naval Lodge of the Moderns, started a somewhat similar Institution, but the two were happily united in 1817 to the lasting benefit of the Craft at large.
Similar schools have been established by the Freemasons of France, Germany, and other countries.
Ossian Lang's History of Freemasonry in the State of New York says: "It will be of interest to many to learn that the common school system of New York is directly indebted to the Masonic Fratemity of that state for its founding. In 1810 the Grand Lodge determined to provide for the free education of children of Freemasons in non-sectarian schools, facilities which had theretofore been lacking. Free schools financed by the Lodges were established, which rapidly grew in popularity, and these attracted so much attention that in 1817 the legislature enacted laws providing for the assumption by the State Government for the growing system, and its extension to meet the requirements of the entire public."
The religious system practised by the Hindus. It presents a profound and spiritual philosophy, strangely blended with the basest superstitions. The Veda is the Brahmanical Book of the Law, although the older hymns springing out of the primitive Aryan religion have a date far anterior to that of comparatively modern Brahmanism. The Laws of Menu is really the text-book of Brahmanism; yet in the Vedic hymns we find the expression of that religious thought that has been adopted by the Brahmans and the rest of the modern Hindus.
The learned Brahmans have a bidden or esoteric faith, in which they recognize and adore one God, without form or quality, eternal, unchangeable, and occupying all space; but confining this concealed doctrine to their interior schools, they teach, for the multitude, an open or exoteric worship, in which the incomprehensible attributes of the supreme and purely spiritual God are invested with sensible and even human forms. In the Vedic hymns all the powers of nature are personified, and become the objects of worship, thus leading to an apparent polytheism.
But, as J. F. Clarke in his Ten Great Religions (page 90) remarks, "behind this incipient polytheism lurks the original monotheism ; for each of these gods, in turn, becomes the Supreme Being." And Max Müller says (Chips, 1, 2) that "it would be easy to find in the numerous hymns of the Veda passages in which almost every important deity is represented as supreme and absolute."
This most ancient religion-believed in by one seventh of the world's population, that fountain from which has flowed so much of the stream of modem religious thought, abounang in mystical ceremonies and ritual prescriptions, worshiping, as the Lord of all, "the source of golden fight," having its ineffable name, its solemn methods of initiation, and its symbolic rites-is well worth the serious study of the Masonic scholar, because in it he will find much that will be suggestive to him in the investigations of the dogmas of his Order.
In speaking of the Brahmins, or Brahmans (Kenning's Cyclopadia of Freemasonry), Brother A. F. A. Woodford tells us, " It has been said, and apparently on good authority, that they have a form of Masonic initiation and recognition amongst them"
A Mohawk Indian Chief, made a Freemason "and admitted to the Third Degree" at London, England, on April 26, 1776. This was in a Lodge of the Moderns, the Falcon, in Princess Street, Leicester Fields.
Brother Hawkins records that during the War of American Independence Brant was in command of some Indian troops on the British side, by whom Captain McKinsty, of the United States Army, had been captured. The Indians had tied their prisoner to a tree and were preparing to torture him, when he made the mystic appeal of a Freemason in the hour of danger. Brant interposed and rescued his American brother from his impending fate, took him to Quebec, and placed him in the hands of some English Freemasons, who returned him, uninjured, to the American outposts. Clavel has illustrated the occurrence on page 283 of his Histoire Pittoresque de la Franc-Maçonnerie.
Joseph Brant, or Thayendanegea, to use his native name, was bom on the banks of the Ohio River in 1742 and was educated at Lebanon, Connecticut.
He was a member of Lodge No. 11 at the Mohawk village, about a mile and a half from Brantford, and was also affiliated with Barton Lodge No. 10 at Hamilton, Canada. Brother Robertson, History of Freemasonry in Canada, records (on page 687) that Brother Brant translated the Gospel of St. Mark into the Mohawk language and this was published in 1787.
Brother A. F. A. Woodford, Kenning's Cyclopoedia, says that he has been reported as Grand Master in England in 1502 and was probably connected with the Operative Lodges.
See Pillars of the Porch.
See Serpent and Cross.
BRAZEN SERPENT, KNIGHT OF THE.
See Knight of the Brazen Serpent.
The largest state and republic in South America. The first Lodge in Brazil is said to have been established by French authority as early as 1815. At any rate it was at work in 1820 and was divided into three parts which in 1821 met and formed the Grand Orient of Brazil according to the French Rite. In October, however, it was closed by order of the Emperor of Brazil, then Grand Master, and lay dormant for ten years.
Eight years later a Grand Orient of Brazil was formed with José Bonefacio de Andrada e Silva as Grand Master. In November, 1832, the Supreme Council of Belgium instituted a Supreme Council, Thirty-third Degree, which in1832 was divided into three parts, each of which daimed to be a Supreme Grand Council. In 1835 there e£sted two Grand Orients and four Supreme Councils.
Out of these several Bodies there finally emerged the original Grand Orient which in 1863 divided into two, the Grand Orient of Lavrado Valley and the Grand Orient of Benedictino Valley, the former inclined to Roman Catholicism, the latter opposed to it.
In 1872 the two parties united ; the following year they divided again. An attack by the Bishop of Pemambuco was the indirect cause of a movement towards Masonic union in 1877, and on January 18, 1883, the union was achieved in a Body which recognized the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, the Modem French Rite and the Adonhiramite Rite.
In 1914 the Grand Orient exercised authority over 390 constituent Lodges, while England, Germany, and Italy were also represented in this territory. A further 50 Lodges paid allegiance to the Grand Orients of Parana and Rio Grande do Sul, the former of which has since united with the Grand Orient at Rio de Janeiro.
There are two German Lodges at Porto Alegre, and one each at Sertas S. Anna, Sapyranga, Santa Cruz, Candelaria, and Joinville. The Grand Orient of Italy has a Lodge at Botucatu, and one at San Paolo.
Eugene Seeger, formerly Consul-General of the United States at Rio de Janeiro, in an article on Brazil (see Current History, July, 1923), referred to the popularity of Freemasonry there and asserted that it was largely due to the great number of free public schools established and supported by the Freemasons for educating future citizens of that republic.
Consecrated bread and wine, that is to say, bread and wine used not simply for food, but made sacred by the purpose of symbolizing a bond of brotherhood, and the eating and drinking of which are sometimes called the Communion of the Brethren, is found in some of the advanced Degrees, such as the Order of High Priesthood in the American Rite, and the Rose Croix of the French and Scottish Rites.
It was in ancient times a custom religiously observed, that those who sacrificed to the gods should unite in partaking of a part of the food that had been offered. And in the Jewish Church it was strictly commanded that the sacrificers should ''eat before the Lord," and unite in a feast of joy on the occasion of their offerings. By this common partaking of that which had been conseemted to a sacred purpose, those who partook of the feast seemed to give an evidence and attestation of the sincerity with which they made the offering ; while the feast itself was, as it were, the renewal of the covenant of friendship between the parties.
BREADTH OF TIIE LODGE.
See Form of the Lodge.
In one of the Old Lectures, quoted by Doctor Oliver, it is said : ''A Mason's breast should be a safe and sacred repository for all your just and lawful secrets. A brother's secrets, delivered to me as such, I would keep as my own; as to betray that trust might be doing him the greatest injury he could sustain in this mortal life; nay, it would be like the villany of an assassin who lurks in darkness to stab his adversary when unarmed and least prepared to meet an enemy."
It is true, that the secrets of a Freemason, confided as such, should be as inviolate in the breast of him who has received them as they were in his own before they were confided. But it would be wrong to conclude that in this a Freemason is placed in a position different from that which is occupied by every honorable man. No man of honor is permitted to reveal a secret which he has received under the pledge of secrecy.
Nevertheless, it is as false as it is absurd, to assert that either the man of honor or the Freemason is bound by any such obligation to protect the criminal from the vindication of the law. It must be left to every man to determine by his own conscience whether he is at liberty to betray a knowledge of facts with which he could not have become acquainted except under some such pledge. No court of law would attempt to extort a communication of facts made known by a penitent to his confessor or a client to his lawyer for such a communication would make the person communicating it infamous. In this case, Freemasonry supplies no other rule than that which is found in the acknowledged codes of Moral Ethics.
The dipioma or certificate in some of the advanced degrees is so called.
A Freemason is said to be bright who is well acquainted with the ceremonies, the forms of opening and closing, and the ceremonies of initiation. This expression does not, however, in its technical sense, appear to include the superior knowledge of the history and science of the Institution, and many bright Freemasons are, therefore, not necessarily learned; and, on the contrary, some learned Freemasons are not well versed in the exact phraseology of the ceremonies. The one knowledge depends on a retentive memory, the other is derived from deep research. It is scarcely necessary to say which of the two kinds of knowledge is the more valuable. The Freemason whose acquaintance with the Institution is confined to what he learns from its esoteric ceremonies will have but a limited idea of its science and philosophy. And yet a knowledge of the ceremonies as the foundation of higher knowledge is essential.
The Scotch term for Masonic initiation. .
A province in the western Dominion of Canada. The first Lodge established in this province was Victoria, No. 783, by the Grand Lodge of England, March 19, 1859. In 1871 the Grand Lodge of England had four Lodges and the Grand Lodge of Scotiand five Lodges. A Convention was held on October 21, 1871; eight out of the nine Lodges were represented, and the Grand Lodge of British Columbia was duly organized. Brother Israel Wood Powell, M. D., Provincial Grand Master of Scotland, was elected the first Grand Master.
BRITISH EAST AFRICA
or KENYA COLONY. The Grand Lodges of England and Scotland have each chartered a Lodge in this district at Nairobi.
A country in South America. The Grand Lodge of Holland warranted Lodge Saint Juan de la Ré-Union in 1771 at Georgetown. It did not however survive very long. Lodges were also chartered by the Grand Lodges of New York, England, Scotland, etc. The Grand Lodge of Scotland has two Lodges at Georgetown.
Known also as Belize, a British colony in Central America. Amity Lodge, No. 309, was chartered at St. George's Quay by the Grand Lodge of England, but as it did not succeed it was dropped from the Register in 1813.
In 1820 British Constitution Lodge was warranted by the United Grand Lodge of England at Honduras Bay but, with that of another Lodge chartered in 1831, its name was omitted from the Register on June 4, 1862.
English Red Apron Lodge, now No. 8, founded 1722, having Centenary Warrant but no special jewel. Officers permitted golden or gilt jewels, same as Lodge of Antiquity. This honor conferred when Lord Cranstoun became Grand Master, 1745. He was a member of the British Lodge and the jewels used by its Master and Wardens were those worn byy the Grand Master and the Grand Wardens and these jewels were gilded before they were returned to the owners, who were permitted to continue their use of them in gold or gilded metal.
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