Oriental Masonry

these pearls of great price were guarded and handed on with alight modifications into the possession of those grand early Christians, the Gnostics, the so-called heretics; then straight from the Gnostic schools of Syria and Egypt to their successors, the Manichaeans, and from these through the Paulicians, Albigenses, and Templars to the Hermetics, the Rosicrucians, and other less powerful Secret Fraternities—these Occult traditions, or rather, Occult Truths, have been bequeathed to the Mystic bodies of our own times. Persecuted by Protestants on one side and by Catholics on the other, the history of Mysticism, outside of the Rosicrucian Fraternity, is a history of martyrdom."

123. "These principal streams of religious thought can be traced distinctly as we struggle through the labyrinth of evidence, and these may not inappropriately be termed the Petrine, Pauline, and Johannine doctrines, the last being the fountain-head of all the later Christian Mystical heresies. The Johannine doctrine caused great excitement in the fourteenth century. It must be borne in mind that the true Occultism, the real Mysticism, is essentially religious in its nature, and students must not be surprised to find that some of the historical religious sects—many of the principal secret societies take St. John as their patron saint, notably is this the case with many of the Masonic bodies—had their foundation in Occultism and Mysticism before stated, the Occult doctrines of the Gnostics were heirlooms and sacred traditions from a very distant past, and when the early Christian era dawned, the human ram had long been plunged in the darkening and materializing tendencies of the Black Ages. Soon the Gnosis was rejected by the orthodox church, and the Sacred and Secret teachings of the Great Master, Jesus, become materialized; they have, however, never been lost, and traces of them can be discerned from epoch to epoch.

124. "The Masonic movement, to state it generally, was at first a sort of broad, semi-mystic and largely moral movement, worked from certain unknown, to Them, centers, and deriving its origin from the Ancient and not generally known basis.

125. It never had anything to do with Operative Masonry or the Builders' Guild. Masonry was founded on the Ancient Wisdom Religion, and when founded was not known as Masonry.

126. Its basis was, and is, unknown to all of those who do not recognize a definitely spiritual guidance in the practical, mental, and moral developments which from time to time change the surface by the introduction of new factors into the evolving processes of which life consists. Researches into Masonic literature must be made in many languages and countries before this view can be firmly established for the general world, but to students of Mysticism and who are also students of Masonry it becomes more and more apparent that the movement which is generally termed Masonic had its roots in that true Mysticism which originated, as an Ideal effort, from the Spiritual Hierarchy which guides the evolution of the world; and that, however much the branches may be separated from the root-idea, there is nevertheless a Mystic

Masonry is not from Builder's Guilds of operative Masons

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