Q. Why stands the Junior Warden in the south, the Senior Warden in the west, and the Master in the east?
A. Because the sun rises in the east to open and govern the day, and sets in the west to close the labors of the same; while the sun in the south admonishes the weary workman of his midday meal, and calls him from labor to refreshment. Dr. Oliver informs us, in his dictionary, that the pedestal, with the volume of the sacred laws, is placed in the eastern part of the lodge, to signify that as the sun rises in the east, to open and enliven the day, so is the Worshipful Master placed in the east to open the lodge, and to employ and instruct the brethren in masonry. (See article "East")
Gadicke, another masonic writer, says, "The sun rises in the east, and in the east is the place for the Worshipful Master";
and, finally, Dr. Hemming, speaking of the three principal officers of the lodge, says:
The Sun rises in the east to open the day, and dispenses life and nourishment to the whole creation. This is well represented by the Worshipful Master, who is placed in the east to open the lodge, and who imparts light, knowledge, and instruction to all under his direction. When it arrives at its greatest altitude in the south, where its beams are most piercing, and the cool shade most refreshing, it is then also well represented by the Junior Warden, who is placed in the south to observe its approach to meridian, and at the hour of noon to call the brethren from labor to refreshment. Still pursuing its course to the west, the sun at length closes the day and lulls all nature to repose; it is then fitly represented by the Senior Warden, who is placed in the west to close the lodge, by command of the Worshipful Master, after having rendered to everyone the just reward of his labor.
It is thus apparent that not only the position, form, dimensions, lights, and furniture of the lodge, but also its principal officers, their respective stations and duties there, all have reference to the sun. The several quotations made from the public and authorized writings of distinguished members of the craft render this plain to unmasonic readers. All members of the fraternity will find this fact more fully confirmed in their minds from their own knowledge of the particulars of the ritual itself.
The Masonic Journey
Q. In what direction are masons instructed to travel? A. Toward the east, in search of light. Q. Why so?
A. Because the sun rises in the east, and is the great source of light.
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