Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Rebirth and Reflection



We are charged during the third degree that the Lord of Life will enable us to trample the King of Terrors beneath our feet, and lift our eyes to that bright Morning Star. The degree thus teaches us to ask that famous question - what is life all about? We experience both the light and dark, we experience the contrast, and we henceforth see the value of life. We are reborn into the light; a new world where things are forever different and we realise we live not only for ourselves, but for the world as a whole.

We get to feel what it is like to see our own grave, and we get shown what it is like to be reborn. It is a personal experience, and it is also a shared experience, an experience to reflect on deeply. It is a climax to our new life as a Mason, and for a short while, we die and are resurrected - something that the magicians, alchemists and natural philosophers of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries desired, men like Dee, Ashmole, Desaguliers....

There is also an element of primeval fear in all of us when we see human bones; we know one day that is what we will all become. Like the Vanitas themes of renaissance art, skulls and symbols of mortality such as the hourglass and the scythe, remind us that time is ticking away, and we really do not have that much time on Earth, and we should try our best to be good and benefit society as much as possible. This is why charity should be part of Freemasonry, and Masonry makes good men better.

5 comments:

  1. Excellent summation, Dr/Br Harrison!

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  2. Those bones are merely our mortal remains - What matters is the Vital and Immortal Principle

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  3. You show stark truth of our being on earth. Well highlighted.

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  4. Great article. Triggered some memories

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  5. I enjoyed your post. It sums up how I felt leading upto, during and after my own third degree. Well done!

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