The letter G, now you see it, now you don't

Discussion in 'Frequently Asked Questions' started by Lowcarbjc, Nov 5, 2013.

  1. Lowcarbjc

    Lowcarbjc Registered User

    What is the official reason why some constitutions have the G inside the S&C on their official website(s) and documents, and others like mine ( not?

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  2. Tony Uzzell

    Tony Uzzell Registered User

    I don't know if any "official reason" exists, but I can give a few thoughts on the matter.

    The "G" inside the Square and Compasses appears in many jurisdictions in the U.S. due to its significance of representing the words "God" and "geometry". I can suppose that a "G" does not exist in many jurisdictions due to the fact that the local words for "God" or "geometry" may not start with the letter G, although I know the exclusion of the G is not limited to non-English speaking countries.

    I also am aware of the fact that, in the Irish constitution, there is no G in the Square and Compasses for the "general" Master Mason (or EA or FC, for that matter). However, in the Irish constitution, the S&C with the Letter "G" is the emblem of a Past Master, for, in those jurisdictions, the Letter G represents a word which means something to a Past Master, but not to one who has not received the Past Master's Degree.

    As your Grand Lodge there in South Africa has not been "polluted" by American Masonic ideas (just kidding, Brothers...everybody calm down), that is the probable reason why there is no "G" in your S&C. It would be interesting to know if you guys use the S&C with the Letter G as a Past Master's emblem, though.

  3. JJones

    JJones Moderator Staff Member

    The letter G and the S&C are actually two separate symbols. Some jurisdictions combine the two, others simply don't.
    Warrior1256 likes this.
  4. Mike Martin

    Mike Martin Eternal Apprentice Premium Member

    There is no official reason (obviously) for the absence of the "G" all I can tell you is that neither the Premier, Antients or United Grand Lodge of England put a G inside the S&C.
    The only British Grand Lodge to use it is Scotland and I've never come across a proper reason why it did so, it may be that other Grand Lodges copied due to the mistaken idea that the Scottish Rite came from Scotland.
  5. Lowcarbjc

    Lowcarbjc Registered User

    Asked 20 people, got 20 different answers. Thank you all for the replies :)

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  6. Warrior1256

    Warrior1256 Site Benefactor

    This has been my observation.
  7. NY.Light.II

    NY.Light.II Registered User

    From an aesthetic standpoint, I think the S&C sans G looks cleaner and more visually appealing.
  8. JamestheJust

    JamestheJust Registered User

    A symbol (as compared to an emblem) is a functional device - and like a TV antenna, must be properly formed to enable resonance with the spiritual light.

    Thus, it seems to me that your observation is quite correct, and that the intrusion of the G reduces the functional flow through the symbol.

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