Reading Morals and Dogma

Discussion in 'The Scottish Rite' started by Brother Secretary, Jan 29, 2009.

  1. I've read it cover to cover several times. To sum it up in one word, Masonically that word would be: Duty

    To sum it up Non-Masonically that word would be: Sominex.

    At night I'd find myself nodding off as I reread the paragraph for the third time trying to gain a firmer comprehension.

    Yes, it is a difficult read written by a true genius... a Boston Lawyer... a Civil War Confederate General... the only officer of the Confederate Army to have a statue of himself in Washington DC, oh and most importantly one who was classically educated in the disciplines of science, military and religious history, and philosophy. That's perhaps where much of the difficulty originates, if you're not also classically educated it can be difficult to determine where Pike's commentary, synthesis, and analogy ends and that which he is commenting on begins. As well, a truly eloquent man at the top of his game in the arts of rhetoric and grammar, Pike would never use 5 words when 55 words would do :D

    I found the below on: and liked what it had to say.

    Morals and Dogma of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry, or simply Morals and Dogma, is a book of esoteric philosophy published by the Supreme Council, Thirty Third Degree, of the Scottish Rite, Southern Jurisdiction of the United States.

    It was written by Albert Pike and first published in 1872. There have been several subsequent editions. While now out of print, copies are still widely available.

    The book is composed of Pike’s ruminations and essays on the Degrees of the Scottish Rite, from the 1st to the 32nd. It is intended as a guidebook for people entering the Scottish Rite, and explains Pike’s understanding of the symbolism and allegory in the degrees he wrote. However, it is a truly imposing tome.

    There are 861 pages of text and a 218 page index; the book itself is over two inches thick. There are thirty-two chapters, each discussing the philosophical symbolism of a degree of Freemasonry in extensive detail.

    Though it discusses the minutiae of Masonic ritual at length, it is written so as not to reveal the Masonic secrets. Ritual motions and objects are named and elaborated upon, but not described. Even so, in some older editions, the title page of the book declares in large, bold letters: ESOTERIC BOOK, FOR SCOTTISH RITE USE ONLY; TO BE RETURNED UPON WITHDRAWAL OR DEATH OF RECIPIENT.

    A copy of Morals & Dogma was given to every new member of the Southern Jurisdiction until 1974, when it was deemed “too advanced to be helpful to the new Scottish Rite memberâ€. It was initially replaced by Clausen’s Commentaries On Morals and Dogma, written by Henry C. Clausen, 33°, Sovereign Grand Commander, and later by A Bridge To Light, by Dr. Rex Hutchens, 33°, G.’.C.’, which is the book a new initiate into the Scottish Rite in the Southern Jurisdiction receives today. The book was never used in the Northern Jurisdiction.
  2. Wingnut

    Wingnut Premium Member

    I own a copy of each of these, and a copy of Morales and Dogma for the 21st Century. Which was written by 4 Brothers from Plano lodge. They basically took the original and went page by page, paragraph by paragraph and researched just about every word to see how they have changed and updated it to modern language. Each paragraph has the corresponding paragraph number from the original along side for easy cross reference. Pike, like a few other historical authors, seem to have the unique ability to actually make more sense when read aloud instead of silently. As a plus you can help your wife and kids go to sleep too :)

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