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The Religion of Early Freemasonry by Charles Harold Lyttle (University of Chicago Press; 1939), is a brochure by a nonMason and theologian of independent and liberal mind. Prof. Lyttle's argument is that Desaguliers Montague, Anderson and other "founders" of Speculative Freemasonry were Deists. In an article contributed to Ars Quatuor Coronatorum on the subject of Freemasonry and natural religion Bro. Knoop and Jones argue to the same conclusion, though more tentatively and with less emphasis on Deism itself than on "natural religion in general."
This theory, one may believe, can be disproved.
1. Anderson was not a Deist (read his sermons!) nor is there any reason to believe that Desaguliers was; but even if Anderson, Desaguliers, Payne, Montague, ete., had been Deists the fact means nothing because they did not invent Speculative Freemasonry, and did not even have an original part in erecting the first Grand Lodge. Speculative, or Symbolical, Freemasonry was at work long before they were born.
2. The writer went through some 200 or so Minutes or Histories of the oldest Lodges in England and America with this subject in mind, but could find nowhere any reference to Deism, or any theory that Freemasonry represented any branch of religion or had any theology of its own. If this be not conclusive to a student he can, if he has sufficient courage and endurance, read through the great mass of Eighteenth Century Masonic sermons and orations, in which the preachers and orators present to us the mind of Masonry as it then was, at least as they understood it; they never once expound Deism as the creed of the Craft and almost never mention it.
3. More conclusive still is a paragraph in the Ahiman Rezon, which was the Antient Grand Lodge's Book of Constitution, written by its leader and Grand Secretary, Laurence Dermott. On page 13 (1764 edition) he writes:
"A Mason is obliged by his tenure to believe firmly in the true worship of the eternal God, as well as in all those sacred records which the dignitaries and fathers of the Church have compiled and published for the use of all good men. So that no one who rightly understands the art, can possibly tread in the irreligious paths of the unhappy libertine, or be induced to follow the arrogant professors of atheism and deism, neither is he to be stained with the gross errors of blind superstition, but may have the liberty of embracing what faith he shall think proper, provided at all times he pays a due reverence to his creator, and by the world deals with honor and honesty, ever making that golden precept the standard or rule of his actions, which engages, To do unto all men as he would they should do unto him." (Italics ours.)
4. What did the rank and file of ordinary men take Deism to be during the first third of the Eighteenth Century? A dependable answer to that question is found in The Complete English Dictionary, by John Wesley, published in 1753, in which the father of Methodism set down a collection of terms as they were then generally and popularly understood. Those with a bearing on the question here under discussion are: "Deism: infidelity, denying the Bible." "A dissenter: one who refuses the Communion of the Church of England." "A Freethinker: a Deist." "A Latitudinarian: one that fancies all religions are saving." "A Noncomformist: a dissenter from the Church."
v Until the Seventeenth Century it had been assumed that religion had so little in common with the natural world, and God Himself had so few relations with it, that religion was necessarily supernatural and could have been given to man only by revelations and miracles. After Galileo, Newton, and their fellow scientists published their books, men formed a new conception of the natural world, and a number of philosophers (Tillotson and the other Deists were only a few among many) began to argue that the "constitution" of the world proved that only a God could have brought it into existence. This is what was meant by Natural Religion. It was a corner-stone in whe theology of Butler and Paley. Even today "Natural Religion" is being taught as a branch of theology in some theological schools (see George Park Baker's text-book on the subject: and Harris' Philosophical Basis of Theism). Among those who believed that a man could reason from the structure of the natural world to the existence of a God (see John Fiske's through Nature to God) only the Deists undertook to set up a new Church or religion upon it, but without success. The story is told in detail by Leslie Stephen in his history of Eighteenth Century thought. If the authors of the Book of Constitutions which the Mother Grand Lodge published in 1723 had been Deists, and if their purpose had been to set Freemasonry up as a Deistic Church or society, they would have had more to say about it than the one short "Paragraph Concerning God and Religion"; and the members of the Lodges themselves would have known more about it. (Apparently, most of the latter had never heard of Deism; and if they had been Deists how did they get their Chaplains? and why were so many orthodox clergymen in membership? If that Paragraph in the Book of Constitutions be analyzed in the light of Wesley's Dictionary, it would seem to tell against Deism, instead of in favor of it; and if to it be added the equally weighty testimony of Ahiman Rezon it appears to be proved that the founders of the Speculative Freemasonry were not Deists and were, if anything, openly opposed to it.)
When Jacques De Molay, last Grand Master of the Templars (see page 546), was burned at the stake, King Philip of France and the Pope between them, aided and abetted by their agents, forged so many documents, destroyed so many, and worked in such secrecy that no clear knowledge of the event was possible until archaeology (in the French sense of the word) and historical scholarship combined their resources in the Nineteenth Century. It is now possible to write an almost detailed history of what happened to the Templars in 1297 and in 1314. After the fall of Acre in 1291 it transpired that for many years before that debacle, after which "a mournful and solitary silence prevailed along the coast which had so long resounded with the world's debate," the Order of the Temple had been undergoing an inner transformation from a society, with monastic rules, of humble brothers succoring the poor and the sick and defending the weak, into a powerful state within the state. In England, to use that country for purposes of a short description, they started about 1185, and in a few years had ten Priories and seventeen Preceptories. They began immediately to accumulate money and property. Though it w as against Church law, they entered the business of lending money, and took a large part of "usury" away from the Jews. They obtained hundreds of estates, farms, mills, grazing rights, flocks of sheep, villages, churches, etc., by gift, bequest, or through their own financial investments. Their yearly income reached the astounding total of 6,000,000 sterling, and they began to finance Kings and States. By about the time of Henry III they divided with the Chureh and its monasteries nearly two-thirds of the wealth of England, and at last talked insolently to the King and refused to heed the Pope, whose Military Arm they were supposed to be.
The resentment against them in France was even more bitter. They fought bloody battles with the Knights of the Hospital (later, of Malta); they were being popularly accused, though on no known evidence, of heresy, of apostasy (to Islam), of dark and evil practices, sorcery, etc. When King Philip IV became bankrupt he could see no way out for France except to expropriate Templar funds; moreover, they had threatened to unite with his enemies. When it appeared that a new Pope would be elected in the near future Philip pledged himself to the Archbishop of Bordeaux if that prelate "would agree to six conditions," one of them being the suppression of the templars. The Prelate agreed, and in 1305 became pope Clement V.
In October, 1307, King Philip arrested the Knights throughout France, seized their money and properties, and arrested Jacques De Molay, and other high officers, who were for many years kept in prison, and in 1314 were executed.
Edward II seized Templar properties in England in 1308, but put none of the Knights to death. In Germany, Spain, Portugal, Cyprus, and in every other country outside immediate control by Pope Clement V and King Philip, public courts, after months of hearings declared the Knights innocent of heresy, apostasy, etc., but the Order was destroyed on the grounds that its wealth and power menaced the security of government. This, it may be taken, was in the last analysis the gist of it; the Order was too arrogant, ruthless, cruel, avaricious to be tolerated, though the Knights were innocent of moral corruption, mysterious crimes, and heresy. De Molay was a martyr because he owed his death to his holding the highest office, and not for personal sins or crimes.
The Masonic Order of Knights Templar, it has to be remembered, is modern and is of Masonic origin. The fact that it exists does not warrant the belief that it thereby approves the Crusades or glorifies the Knightly Orders. The Crusades were a calamity for Europe, and for the Balkans, and of such a mixture of religion, lust, murder, rapacity, piety, saintliness, of worship mixed with business, as could be found in the Middle Ages only. There were many Orders of Knights, and they ranged from the original band to protect pilgrims to the Temple across to the Teutonic Knights who for so long carried on organized brigandage in what is now Poland and Prussia. It is from the ideals of chivalry, of gentlemanliness, courtesy, and devotion to a high ideal which inspired the earliest Knights in the Temple and Hospital Orders that Masonic Templarism derives its inspiration. The guilt for the burning of De Molay can never be assigned; it was divided up among too many responsible parties and persons, among them being the Templars themselves who were in all certainty guilty of treason at the time.
One of the wisest, most learned, and most impartial of the many historians of the Crusades and the Knights is our American scholar, Prof. Dana Munro; see his many works. A Straightforward, modern account is The Knights Tempters; Their Rise and Fall, by G. A. Campbell; Robert McBride & co. A very btilliant, condensed account is Medieval Knights Templars by Bro. H. H. MacConnal; page 280, in The Treasury of Masonic Thought, compiled by George M. Martin and John W. Callaghan; David Winter & Son; Dundee Scotland; 1924. Written by a Masonic Knight it is learned, fair, candid, and is not often surpassed for encompassing so much history without loss of substance and color within so few pages.
After Cornwallis surrendered at Yorktown in October, 1781, General Washington could not disband his own army until the British had removed theirs. To arrange for this, Gen. Washington met Sir Guy Carleton at the DeWint home in Tappan Town, New York, May 5, 1782. General Washington had been entertained in the same home once before, and under less happy circumstances. In September, 1780, Benedict Arnold had his secret meeting with Major Andre, a British spy, at Stony Point, to arrange for the betrayal of West Point. Andre was captured, taken to Tappan, and courtmartialed. During those days Washington lived in the DeWint home; and it was there that he signed Andre's death warrant. Nor was his visit in 1781 to be his last; on his way to West Point in November, 1783, Washington was overtaken by a snow-storm and once again received entertainment at the DeWints'. Remembering this close tie between it and Washington, and learning that the old house was to be sold for use as a tea room or roadside tavern, the Grand Lodge of New York purchased it with funds voluntarily contributed by the members throughout the Grand Jurisdiction, refurbished the mansion, and turned it into a Masonic shrine, as a celebration of the 200th anniversary of Washington's birth. It was dedicated May 1, 1932. (See The Washington Masonic Shrine at Tappan, N.Y., Grand Lodge, F.&A.M., New York.)
District Deputy Grand Masters comprise an administrative system by which the Grand Master has a corps of assistants who within a prescribed area are empowered to act and speak in his name. Though similar in title, a District Deputy differs fundamentally and at almost every point from a Deputy Grand Master; the latter is the second highest elective Grand officer, is in reality a Vice-Grand Master, and acts with and for the Grand Master throughout the Grand Jurisdiction; the District Deputy is an appointive officer, with a set of specified duties limited to a small area, can never take the Grand Master's place, and could not on his own authority preside over a Grand Lodge Communication. Some Grand Jurisdictions do not employ a I)istrict system of any type; some combine a District Deputy Grand Master with a District Grand Lecturer; among Grand Jurisdictions which have the District Depvty Grand Master system there are differences from one to another.
The Grand Jurisdiction of New York has a District Deputy Grand Master system which embodies each and every feature found in any other Grand Jurisdiction; it can therefore be used as a specimen:
The Grand Jurisdiction is divided into fifty-nine Districts, each including some fifteen to twenty Lodges. In the largest cities the group of Lodges is not restricted to geographical boundaries; outside the cities a District covers one or two counties, usually two. These jurisdictions are established by Grand Lodge action, never by action of the Lodges themselves.
The District Deputy is a constitutional officer, and is appointed by the Grand Master for a term of one year. His duties are outlined by the Constitution of the Grand Lodge.
The District Deputy is the Grand Master's personal Deputy; he acts and speaks in his official capacity in the Grand Master's name; when he is in a Lodge it is as if the Grand Master were there himself. When a Grand Master visits a Lodge he enters without announcement, or waiting for a Master's assent; a District Deputy "announces he is about to enter" but does not wait for consent. Once he has entered he can take the East or not as he chooses. No Master or Lodge can exclude a District Deputy. EIis authority is real, not formal.
He is expected to visit each Lodge at least once a year to inspect it and its books, and to ascertain if it is conducting its affairs regularly and is maintaining peace and harmony; also he can visit any Lodge at will at any time and need not forewarn the Lodge of his coming.
The District Deputy reports to the Grand Master in person or by telephone; and at the end of the year makes a report to the Grand Master of his whole District. He has a seat and a vote in Grand Lodge, and during Annual Grand Communications sits with delegates from his District, who are grouped near a standard giving the District's name, so that any delegate who takes the floor announces his Lodge before speaking and the assembly identifies his Lodge's District by the standard. Districts carry on many enterprises of their own.
Alongside the District Deputy Grand Master system is the District Grand Lecturer system, but the two are independent of each other, and have no overlapping duties. The Ritual is in the care of a Standing Grand Lodge Committee called the Board of Custodians. The Grand Lecturer is a Grand officer, is appointed by the Grand Master, and his appointment is announced at the Grand Communication (the Grand Master has thirty days in which to appoint his own Deputies); he receives a salary and traveling expenses and devotes his full time to his office.
The Grand Lecturer is examined by the Board of Custodians for his proficiency, and is throughout the year responsible to it. He appoints Distriet Grand Lecturers for the Districts; they are answerable to him for inspecting Lodge ceremonial work, conferring of degrees, and for instructing ritualists in each Lodge.
Each of the Grand Jurisdictions in the United States has its own official Ritual, and an Officer, Board, or Committee to protect it against alteration by Constituent Lodges and to save it from the attritions of time. By this Uniform Ritual (Uniform within the Grand Jurisdiction) is meant the ceremonies of each of the Three Degrees, of Opening and Closing, of Installation of Officers, etc. It consists of an Esoteric Work, no word of which can be printed, and of the Exoteric (or Monitorial) Work, most of which is printed by the Grand Lodge in its Monitor; in the latter, some portions may be omitted, some portions admit of alternative choices (Apron lecture is one), etc. Though uniform among the Lodges within a Grand Jurisdiction, there are some differences in the Esoteric Work itself and a number of differences in the Exoteric Work from one Grand Jurisdiction to another. These differences are called Divergencies of Ritual.
Pennsylvania has the largest divergence; the Middle Western Grand Jurisdictions have the least. The differences are in every instance such as do not affect anything that can be properly called a Landmark. The Operative Freemasons from about 1150 A.D. to 1600 A.D. had ceremonies, but since they were never written it is by the nature of the case impossible to know what the ceremonies were; but it is certain that they must have been numerous, and to judge by Medieval customs followed by the skilled crafts and gilds in general they were doubtless more numerous and elaborate than ceremonies now. It is known that there were oaths, reception of apprentices, admittance into grades, circumambulation, symbolic use of tools and practices, at least in the later period a traditional Legend of the Craft, Modes of Recognition, secrecy and clothing. It is not probable that these ceremonies were separately organized into Degrees, or that the same ceremonies were used from one country to another, or even from one Lodge to another; but there must have been 8 certain substratum of uniformity because Freemasons went from one community to another and from one country to another. Thus there were divergencies even in the earliest times of the Fraternity.
In Medieval Freemasonry a Lodge was an adjunct to the work of erecting a building. If the building was a cathedral, requiring from twenty-five to fifty years to build, the Craftsmen might build houses for themselves, or even a separate village—in at least one instance an English village still in existence began as a community of Mason houses; and the Lodge, a separate building, was headquarters, meeting-place, and work-shop for the Freemason workmen (not for workmen who did not rank as Freemasons). In this building the Brethren assembled at need, and probably also had meetings at fixed dates; it can be taken for granted that these meetings were ceremonious, and that in them many matters were discussed and decided beside daily work. There came a time, probably in the Fourteenth Century, when a Lodge was no longer dissolved when a building was finished but was maintained for its own sake. The members were, in the main, Operatives but they worked at different places. This keeping a Lodge after it was no longer necessary to daily work, and because it was esteemed for itself, was the true beginning of Speculative Freemasonry as a single Fraternity; and it is reasonable to think that ceremonies and symbols began to be even more valued than before, although the ceremonies were doubtless not organized in separate Degrees, and there was no uniformity of ceremony among the Lodges (they had no Grand Lodge) except in fundamentals.
After the first Grand Lodge was erected in 1717 the Lodges (as is learned from their Minutes) had a more organized body of ceremonies, but it was not at first organized into separate, mutually exclusive Degrees, because often the whole body of ceremonies was conferred in one meeting, and the Candidate was both Apprentice and Fellow the same night; this single whole of ceremony probably included what later became the Master, or Third, "Part." By the middle of the Eighteenth Century the reorganization of ceremonies in the form of Lodges (or Degrees) of Entered Apprentice, Fellowcraft, and Master Mason began to crystallize. For some years the Third Degree was conferred separately in Grand Lodge, or in a Masters' Lodge; later it was incorporated in the Working of each Lodge. Some ceremonies in it became detached and were organized into a Chapter of the Holy Royal Arch. During that period there were many divergencies as between one Lodge and another. Grand Lodges had been formed in Ireland and in Scotland. In 1751 a second Grand Lodge, the Antient, was formed in England. It is known that by that date the original Grand Lodge of 1717 had altered the Modes of Recognition, had dropped out the Ceremony of Installations and ignored the Royal Arch. The Antient Grand Lodge called itself by that name because it restored the Ritual to what it had been; on this the Grand Lodges of Scotland and Ireland agreed, and they officially inspected and approved the Antient Ritual There was thus, and for almost threequarters of a century, a Jundamental divergence in Ritual as between the two lawful Grand Lodges of England.
On October 26, 1809, the Modern Grand Lodge (of 1717) constituted a Lodge of Promulgation which, according to a Grand Lodge resolution, was to give effect to a previous resolution for enjoining the "Lodges to revert to the Ancient Land Marks of the Society " This proves that the Modern Grand Lodge confessed itself to have made innovations in the Ritual, a different matter from having made divergencies. At the time of the Union of 1813 a version of the Ritual was approved, and a Lodge of Reconciliation was constituted to "promulgate and enjoin the pure and unsullied system." It held meetings until 1816. But the Lodges at large refused voluntarily to accept Uniform Work, and it was deemed unwise to force them to do so. In consequence Lodges under English Constitutions have had ever since a choice of a number of officially approved "workings," notable among them being Stability, Emulation, West-End, Oxford, and Logic, and perhaps twenty or thirty more.
Meanwhile from the 1720's on, Freemasonry had come to the American Colonies (including Canada) in Lodges warranted by the Modern and Antient Grand Lodges, Scotland, Ireland, a few of French origin, and a few self-constituted Lodges of mixed origin. Provincial Grand Masters were appointed, a few Provincial Grand Lodges were erected, but it was impossible for either one to exercise close supervision over the Lodges; and oftentimes these Lodges themselves reported to one of the Grand Lodges abroad directly.
Thus the Provineial Grand Lodge of Massachusetts under Price warranted Lodges in New Hampshire, South Carolina, Antigua, Nova Scotia, l\ewfoundland, Rhode Island, Maryland, Connecticut, and in the army. In consequence, the Grand Lodges of the United States had among their Lodges a variety of workings, including French and West Indian (the latter center of Masonry was a power in the Craft here for many years). The inherited divergencies themselves became yet more diversified by the freedom of Lodges to revise the Work to please themselves, and the evil of the "Degree peddler" arose. When this had reached a point impossible to tolerate a number of Grand Lodges and of Masonic leaders could see no way open except to set up a general, or National Grand Lodge; this complicated the problem because the scheme had to include many matters other than the Ritual; and the fact is proved by the fate of the two Baltimore Conventions of 1843 and 1847, where a wholehearted attempt to agree on Uniform Work failed because it had become involved with the scheme for a National Grand Lodge. The way out was found by the system tow in use, where each Grand Lodge (with possibly one exception) maintains a Uniform Work within its own Grand Jurisdiction. Since Grand Lodges decided on their versions independently of each other, some divergencies inevitably remained. These divergencies nowhere involve Landmarks and hence are not innovations; if a Grand Lodge were guilty of an innovation other American Grand Lodges would withdraw recognition from it.
At the removal of a century of tinge it is now clear that the Brethren in the two Baltirrore Conventions were confusing two principles with each other, each independent of the other (as the Lodge of Promulgation had done): the Ritual and the Landmarks. They went on the assumption that the unity of Masonry required a universal Uniform Work. The Fraternity had maintained its identity for some eight centuries without Uniform Work, therefore its identity is not preserved by Uniform Work; that which has maintained its unity and identity always has been the Ancient Landmarks. "When, where, how, by whom was the original Uniform Work broken into divergencies?" this question which once was so frequently asked, has received its answer from Masonie history: "There never was, at any time, in any country, a universal Uniform Work." More than one miracle would have been required to make it possible; historians themselves never are astonished by the fact of divergencies; they are astonished by the fewness and unimportance of divergencies.
The discussion of the need for Uniform Work went on among American Grand Jurisdietions for a half century; as a Mason now reads that discussion in Grand Lodge Proceedings, more especially in Foreign Correspondence Reports, and in periodicals, he is impressed by the vigor, the almost virulence, with which the discussions were eondueted, even on the floor of Grand Lodges. There has a sound reason for that vigorous and open concern; in the Esoteric Work are embodied certain elements or principles which are of the substance of Freemasonry; to decide what was to be in the Ritual and what not, involved deciding what Freemasonry is or is not; therefore the long arguments, sometimes over one word, were neither scholastic hair-splitting nor demagogic ill humor but were made in the full consciousness of how large were the issues involved.
NOTE. The dramatic instance of long-drawn discussion over one element in the Work occurred in England as between the Antient and Modern Grand Lodges over the Ceremony of Installation. She Ceremony itself openly signalizes the fact that a number of rights, belonging to the Landmarks, are inherent in the office of Worshipful Master. To omit the Ceremony, as the Modern Grand Lodge had done, reduced the Master to the status of a temporary presiding officer without original authority; once that is done a Lodge ceases to be a true Lodge and becomes a mere local branch of a Grand Lodge. "What is Freemasonry"? was involved in the question of that Ceremony.
Once the American Grand Lodges had each one oClEcially adopted a Uniform Work of its own, it was found that a great majority had what is called the Webb-Preston Work, and had it at a first or a second remove. What, exactly, was the " Webb-Preston" Work? It was no! tite Asoteric Work. Neither Preston, nor Webb, nor any other Ritualist, nor any Grand Lodge had ever authored that; for it had come down from Mason to Mason, inside their Lodges. Preston developed a series of lectures, written in Eighteenth Century language and reflecting Eighteenth Century circumstances, as a running commentary on the Esoteric work, and addressed to the Candidate.
These lectures were permitted by the Grand Lodge of England (Modern) but never were made a part of the Work officially. Webb took over Preston's lectures, modified them in at least one section, and incorporated them in his book, which became a guide to American Ritualists. The Webb-Preston Work properly so called can therefore be nothing more than the Monitorial Lectures. These lectures are not aboriginal, not of time immemorial, were produced by one man; they are therefore not a Landmark, and any Grand Lodge could, if it so decided, modify, or re-write, or replace them with a new set of lectures without being guilty of innovation.
The Rev. William Dodd was born in Lincolnshire, in 1729. After graduating from Cambridge University in 1750, he entered Holy Orders; after achieving an almost immediate popularity as preacher, author, and editor, he became Chaplain to his Majesty, King George III., in 1764.
Among his many friends in high places was Dr. Samuel Johnson. The Earl of Chesterfield was his patron. Dr. Dodd was made a Mason in St. Albans Lodge in 1775. That same year he was appointed Grand Chaplain, the first ever to hold the office; and delivered an oration at the dedication of the new Grand Lodge Hall, May 23, 177Wa date, it will be noted, though irrelevantly, almost coincidental with the beginning of the American Revolutionary War.
In the following year it was discovered that Dr. Dodd had forged a bond from the Earl of Chesterfield for £4,200. He was expelled by his Lodge and the Grand Lodge; by the latter on April 7, 1777, a month before he was sentenced to be hanged, which was on June 27th. The Corporation of the City of London and petitions signed by 30,000 prayed the King to commute his sentence. It was the last of the public hangings at which a large throng attended; and was one of the principal beginnings of the movement which resulted in the abolishment of "the cruel and inhuman penalty" of death for debt, forgery, and more than a hundred other felonies beneath the level of murder and treason. The extreme penalties assessed to even such petty crimes as poaching for which Britain was once notorious were not, as is many times said, Medieval; when the Tudor kings began to transform the old monarchy into an absolute despotism lodged in a single ruler, the death sentence was one of the agen cies they employed for the purpose.
The great bronze dragon in one of the assembly halls of the House of the Temple, A.&.A S.R.,S.J., in Washington, D.C., invariably captures the eye of a visitor to that extraordinary building. It has there, however, a special and local significance, and one may guess that it was suggested to architect Russell Pope by an idea left by Albert Pike of a dragon as a symbol of the eternal—for among some peoples, the Chinese particularly, the dragon is like the phoenix in never dying permanently. It has never had a place among symbols in Ancient Masonry, though there are dragon-like figures in certain of the old cathedrals; these may have been meant for Eve's serpent, or for griffins.
In art, symbolism, and religion the dragon has been in almost world-wide use. Among the Chinese it usually has meant the heavens. Among the Celts it usually was connected with a myth. It was a symbol of one of the gods among Ancient Mesopotamian peoples, was the protagonist of a very old epic there, and astronomers gave it a constellation of stars. (It is doubtful if many ancient peoples ever worshipped the stars themselves; it is more probable that they worshipped something which had its abode among the stars, or in an upper world in which the stars existed, or something represented by the stars.
Archeologists are beginning to believe that the Chaldeans and Babylonians were not as astrological as it had been said they were.)
v The dragon was in anatomy a combination of crocodile, serpent, bird, and quadruped, at home in the air and in fire (lightning, most likely). The great plumed serpent which stood at the center of the whole system of emblems and symbols employed by the Mayas, was not in a strict sense a dragon, but it was one approximately, for though it was a serpent, it had wings, and a crocodile-like snout. That plumed serpent came to be to American Indian peoples north and south what the cross is to Christians, their "great symbol"; Pueblo women paint it around their pottery bowls, Navajos engrave it on their silver, and Apaches weave it into their bead-work. It means everywhere the same things: a river, clouds, rain, and therefore crops, and therefore food. Symbologists believe that this is the general, world-wide significance of the dragon. The early Mithraists used a statue of Time, representing a monster swallowing itself, but this, like the python of the oracles, was a serpent rather than a dragon.
For a single study, one that is a specimen of many others, see The Celtic Dragon Myth, by G. Henderson; John Grant; Edinburgh; 1911.
In the article on page 295 Dr. Albert G. Mackey is quoted as having said that dues paying is a modern custom, established at some period after 1717 A.D., and that nothing is known about Speculative Lodges prior to that date. If by dues Dr. Mackey meant dues in their present form, a fixed amount levied by a Lodge on each one of its members by a provision of the By-Laws, dues are not only subsequent to 1717 A.D. but also are subsequent to the whole Eighteenth Century. Very little is known about the financial practices of Lodges prior to 1717 A.D., but it is safe to assume that they followed the same custom as lodges, gilds, and fraternities of other kinds, which means that they had a system of payments.
A Lodge by virtue of its own nature cannot carry on its work except by means of some expenditure of money; these expenses are divided equally among the members each year, and to do so is a Landmark; the amount which falls to each member is the amount due from him to his Lodge—is his dues. The fixed sum named in the By-Laws is an average amount over a period of years, and it is kept to the same amount as closely as possible as a convenience, as a check against extravagance and as a protection against debt. If a member is unable to defray his own share of LOdge expenses because of illness, physical disability or unemployment his Lodge may forgive him the amount without prejudice to his good standing; if he is able to pay his share but refuses to he may be suspended from membership in his Lodge; if he persists in his refusal to to pay he may be expelled by his Lodge.
It was Dr. Mackey's opinion that "As the payment of dues is not a duty owing to the Craft in general, so...the non-payment of them is not an offense against the Craft, but simply against his Lodge.... Present-day Grand Lodges and authorities on Masonic Jurisprudence would not agree with this opinion. Lodge dues include a member's share in the expense of Grand Lodge as well as in the expense of his local Lodge; also, they include his share of certain expenses which cannot be described as either Lodge or Grand Lodge expenditures but rather are general expenses of the Fraternity as a whole- Also, Dr. Mackey forgot that a member can be expelled as well as suspended if he persists in refusing to pay dues, in which event he is not only outside the Lodge but is outside the Fratanity and is no longer a Mason.
Fixed annual dues roughly represent the expenditures of a Lodge for the year to come according to normal expectations. To care for unexpected or extraordinary or unprecedented expenditures other methods are employed. A Lodge may receive income from an indefinite number of sources: fixed dues; initiation fees; assessments;
vendowments; gifts; incomes from properties; voluntary subscriptions; from entertainments; etc. The provisions in the By-Laws for dues cover only dues narrowly so called, a fixed annual amount; regulations for endowments assessments, etc., are separately drawn. Regulations governing endowments, interest, and income from property are partly in the By-Laws or in special Lodge action, partly in the laws of the State. (Lodges sometimes forfeit endowments and properties because of a failure to conform to requirements made by the State laws.)
During the larger part of the Eighteenth Century Lodges called annual membership charges "subscriptions." Each Lodge fixed the amount for itself. In some Lodges this amount differed for two or possibly three or even four classes of members: those who lived close at hand and could attend meetings without expense to themselves; those who lived ten to twenty miles away, and could attend only at some expense to 'themselves; honorary members; etc. Usually, a Lodge kept a "box" at a convenient place into which members could voluntarily drop monies for relief and charity. Also, Lodges then had two sources of income no longer permitted: they levied fines, oftentimes for nonattendanee, and from the Minutes of some Lodges it is evident that this was a major source of income (a Master could levy a fine out of hand); and visitors paid a fee for the Lodge meal or entertainment; at a time when the Lodge dinner was a fixed feature this amounted in practice to an admission fee.
v The custom of having a fixed, predictable income has become ingrained in American Masonic practice and is not likely to be altered for many years to come; nevertheless it is not wholly satisfactory because it is not flexible, and oftentimes acts as a brake on Lodge activities. It is an Ancient Landmark that each member shall pay his proportionate share of expenses; no Landmark dictates what the expenses shall be, or how they shall be determined, or by what means or at what times they are to be pro-rated. It is conceivable that during the year a Lodge might spend as much as is required for whatever activities might seem wise or desirable, add up the expenses at the end of the year, divide the total by the number of members, and assess each member for the amount (which would not be predictable); this would violate no Landmark, but it would go counter to established custom, would call for an increased amount of bookkeeping, would do away with fixed dues, and it is not probable that many members would approve of a method so flexible. Furthermore, even if the maximum of flexibility were permissible the Lodge would have a very narrow choice of how much to spend and what for, because the majority of costs are for fixed expenses (like rent, light, etc.)
It is because of this last fact that an increasing number of American Lodges are adopting the system of Lodge budgets. By a budget is meant that the expected income is divided up among a set of departments and standing committees; that each will have no more or less than the amount allocated; and this allocation is made by Lodge action at the beginning of the fiscal year, and hence is a Lodge law for that year. There are a number of advantages in the budget system, among them being: first, that each office, department, or committee will know at the beginning how much funds it will have to use during the year and can plan accordingly; second, it guarantees that any given Lodge activity will not receive more or less than it is justly entitled to—thereby insuring against such malproportioned spending as was the recorded ease of a Lodge of 1300 members which in one year spent $1210.00 for banquets and $15.00forrelief andcharity; third, it guarantees that a Lodge will not neglect any of the forms of work or activity which it belongs to the nature of a Lodge to carry on. There are two forms of Lodge budget; the general, and the specific. In the former the Lodge allocates a fixed amount to some department or activity at the beginning of the year, and stops there; in the latter the budget is so printed or written that it keeps books on each department of committee, month by month, and in detail, so that at the end of the year each of the latter can show what each dollar was spent for; also, under the latter, each one can know at any given date how much money is left in its fund.
To the extended biography of Thomas Dunckerley which begins on page 295 may be added two other facts because they place him and his creative and zealous work on American soil and in American ports. Dunckerley was with Wolfe as an officer on H. M. S. Vanguard at the siege of Quebee in 1759, and it is believed that he had a Naval Lodge on board; it is certain that he interested himself in the many Army Lodges among the British regiments there in action, one of which was to become the Mother Lodge, and a famous one (with the 47th Regiment), of the Provincial Grand Lodge of Canada. In the following year of 1760 Dunckerley returned from England to Quebec with written authority from the Grand Master of England to "regulate Masonry in the new Colony." Either because of his advises or because the Lodges were possessed of wise leaders of their own the new Provincial Grand Lodge was a vigorous sueeess, and continued to be so until 1797.
Dunekerley also, working out of English ports, endeavored to father a system of Naval Lodges. He did not succeed in this except for a few Lodges, but he was one of the leaders responsible for drawing into the Crafts thousands of seamen and hundreds of sea captains, who carried Freemasonry into ports everywhere. See Early Ca dian Masonry, 1759-1869, by Pemberton Smith, one of a growing number of masterly Lodge histories of a new (and much improved) type; Quality Press; Montreal; 1939. This is one of many Canadian books which American Masonic students are going to find it necessary to read, not only in order to know Canadian but to know early American Masonic history. Until the Revolution the MaXa chusetts Colony (which virtually embraced the whole of New England) and the Canadian Colonies were a single British Colonial empire, with many activities and interests in common, Masonry among them; for that reason the history of Canadian Masonry from 1759 to 1775 and the history of New England Masonry in the same years belong to one history.

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