My Dearest Grandson:
Initiation: The history of Initiation of ancient days was often dangerous and most difficult and the more they were so the greatest effort had to be put forth, but in the end the greater was their efficacy; thus the world had true men to govern and instruct it in those days.
The Priestly Art and the Kingly Art consisted of, above all things, trials of courage, discretion and will power. This is what was done by the great Initiates who convulsed the world and they could only have accomplished it by means of the “Great and Incommunicable Secret.” As a guarantee of renewed youth, the symbolic Phoenix never reappeared to the world without having solemnly consumed the ashes and proofs of his anterior life. Thus Moses caused all those who had known Egypt to die in the desert (who violated Divine science). St. Paul at Ephesus burned all books which treated of occult science and finally the French Revolution, daughter of the great Johannite Orient and the ashes of the Templars, spoliated the Churches and blasphemed the allegories of the Divine Cultus. But all doctrines and all restorations prescribe and doom its mysteries to the flames of oblivion. This is because every cultus or philosophy is a Benjamin of humanity, which lives by the death of its Mother—because the symbolic serpent revolves ever by devouring its own tail, because a void is necessary as a condition of existence for every plenitude, a negation for every affirmation. It is the eternal realization of the Phoenix allegory.
To be able to make use of anything and to abstain from doing so is to be twice able.
The greatest injury which can be inflicted on a man is to call him a coward. Now a coward is one who neglects the care of his moral dignity, one who obeys the instincts of nature blindly. Why then in the presence of danger is it shameful to be afraid? But honor has laid down a law that we should prefer duty to inclination or fear. What then is honor from this standpoint? It is the universal fore-consciousness of immortality and the valuation of the means which can lead to it. The final victory that man can achieve over death is to conquer the relish of life, not by despair, but by a nobler hope which is comprised in faith, for all that is honorable and beautiful, by the consent of the universal world.
To learn self-conquest is therefore to learn how to live and the austerities of stoicism were no idle beast of liberty. To yield to the forces of nature is to follow the current of collective life and to be the slave of secondary causes. To resist and overcome nature is to achieve for one’s self a personal and imperishable existence and to set oneself free from the vicissitudes of life and death. Every man who is prepared to die rather than renounce truth and justice is veritably living, for he is immortal in his soul. So the end of all ancient initiation was to find or form such men.
Pythagoras taught his disciples silence and all kinds of self-denial. In Egypt the neophytes were tried by the four elements; in India it is well known to what incredible austerities fakirs and Brahmans devote themselves in order to attain free will and Divine independence. All the macerations of asceticism are borrowed from the initiations of the ancient mysteries which have ceased because those eligible for Initiation finding no Initiators, and the leaders of conscience having become in the long run as ignorant as the profane, the blind have become weary of following the blind and the path of light has been lost; this is called the Lost Word of the Masonic teachings.
But my dearest Grandson, this is your work as a Mason: first to “prove thyself” and go through this process of restoration, then you can lead others to that path of light of God, and my one great spiritual prayer and hope is that you will with God’s help fulfill the purpose of life, the purpose for which every soul was born, and at all times remember the super natural is but the natural lifted to an exalted state: a miracle is a phenomenon which astounds the multitude because unexpected, the marvelous is that which amazes and nothing is miraculous except to the ignorant, unacquainted with its cause. The myths of Genesis is eternally true—God permits the tree of science and knowledge to be approached by those alone who are sufficiently self denying and strong, who do not covet its fruits, for all fruits belong to God alone.
Lost Word in Masonry
Mythical history in Freemasonry: that there once existed a Word of surpassing value and claiming a profound veneration; that this word was known to few and at length was lost, that a temporary substitute was found for it. As the very philosophy of Masonry teaches us that there can be no death without a resurrection, no decay without a subsequent restoration, in the same principle it follows that the loss of the Word must suppose its eventual recovery. The Word is the symbol of Divine Truth, the narrative of its loss and the search for its recovery becomes a mythical symbol of the decay and loss of the true religion among the ancient nations. General interpretation is the personal progress of a Candidate from his first Initiation to the completing of his course when he receives a full development of the mysteries.
Temple of Solomon. Built: generally accepted as 1004 B.C. Myths are to be conceived not alone as historical facts but as allegories; not as events that really transpired but as symbols (become the foundation of a science of morality).
Sacred Tetragrammaton: substance of the Creator, the self-existent essence of God, within Himself and separate from His works.