Discussion in 'General Freemasonry Discussion' started by jonesvilletexas, Jan 21, 2010.

  1. jonesvilletexas

    jonesvilletexas Premium Member

    In an age when everything seems to be faster and more hectic, it is interesting to note that Masonry appears stationary and rooted in the past with its rituals, legends, and language. To many of its lessons seem out of step with the contemporary world and of a different era. But such is not the case, for a life based on a code of morality, tolerance of others; brotherly love and affection, and a search for truth must be a universal and timeless goal.

    While transportation, communication, and entertainment speed up daily, one element of our lives has not changed, namely time! The twelve months of the ancients, the seven days, the twelve hours, sixty minutes, and even the sixty seconds move as they always have, one step at a time. Regardless of the external world, each Mason is given his space of time in which to live and to live well.

    There are three principal symbols alluding to the use of time, namely the twenty-four inch gauge, the hour glass, and the scythe. The gauge is presented to the Entered Apprentice to teach him to discipline himself in his use of time, finding a portion for his vocation, a portion for service to God and a distressed worthy Brother, and portion for refreshment and sleep. It is interesting that some, such as Albert Pike, have interpreted these portions as being eight hours, while others only suggest to divide one’s time into three portions and apply them wisely, as a good Mason should.

    Certainly the hour glass clearly illustrates how the movement of the minute grains of sand mirrors the imperceptible movement of time. Without reflection and thought, the seconds become minutes, the minutes become hours, and lo, a year, or a lifetime, has passed. The old saying, “As the sands in the hour glass, so are the days of our livesâ€, becomes most apparent when we slow down and reflect. Herein is found one of the most important reasons to revisit our part in each of the three Degrees and reflect upon those lessons of life, their meanings, and our role in building a Spiritual Temple. Within the Lodge we can find both meaning and peace of mind.

    The hour glass allegorically is shown with an old man with white hair and beard, two white wings at his back, and a scythe. In the third degree the scythe is described as an emblem of time and the finality of man’s life within the terrestrial sphere. It clearly symbolizes the end of life on earth. Age is the reaper of the life and the final step before facing judgment. Likewise the old man is pictured with a weeping virgin and disentangling her ringlets, which is to teach the Mason that time, patience, and perseverance will overcome all things except death. To earn plaudits from Above and find the True Word must be the Mason’s true goals.

    So it is each Mason should understand that the lessons within the Lodge, its symbols, rituals, and allegories require time, study, reflection, and commitment. The external world is constantly changing, but the internal world of spirit, morality, integrity, peace, and happiness has not. Each second, minute, hour and day is a gift from the Great Architect of the Universe to man and to the good Mason this time is a precious gift to be applied well.
  2. Blake Bowden

    Blake Bowden Administrator Staff Member

    Great post! Thanks for sharing!
  3. Hippie19950

    Hippie19950 Premium Member

    This is what I like and enjoy about Masonry, and as I have said before, I asked to be made a part of an Ancient Brotherhood, based on the values of those before us, and I hope I can pass some of these values along. Had I wanted something modern, there are many other things I could be a part of.
  4. Raven

    Raven Registered User

    Super post, Brother!
    Thank you for sharing.

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