Welcome to the January issue of The Square
We would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a very happy, healthy and productive New Year!
What 2022 will bring forth is anybody’s guess but we live in hope that things can only get better…again!
Depending on where you are in the world, you may be under the déjà vu-like Covid restrictions that keep bouncing back like an unwanted boomerang.
Quite literally as I write this, the UK is once more teetering on the brink of a lockdown, albeit hopefully only a short-lived ‘circuit breaker’, due to the ominous sounding Omicron variant currently sweeping the globe.
As always, these ‘pauses’ in our lives can give us the chance to reflect on past events and learn for the future.
New Year’s Resolutions are a bit old hat these days and we might be better off making small daily adjustments rather than grand changes – in the main because we have no idea what is going to happen next in this ongoing Pandemic.
We’ve all had plans, travels and meetings go amiss but with the arsenal of vaccines/boosters, and new medicines available to us, with luck in the coming year we’ll get on top of this thing – please don’t quote me on that this time next year if I’m wrong!
Freemasons should be no strangers to making a daily advancement in their knowledge, or behaviour, and that’s perhaps a good blueprint for the rest of the world – bite-size changes and maybe a bit of a ‘flying by the seat of our pants’ philosophy. Carpe Diem – seize the day, for tomorrow the rules might change!
This month we have a great line-up of features for you – knowledge, wisdom (old and new) and things to make you go ‘aah, I didn’t know that!’.
The Builders’ Rites delves into the origins of foundation or cornerstone ceremonies and ends with a look at the symbolism of the cornerstone both in Operative and Speculative Freemasonry.
This month’s Masonic Miscellanies is probably the most bizarre yet – in a book from 1851, satirising various prominent members of Philadelphia high society, there is a chapter entitled ‘The Masonic Terrapin’. Yes, you did read that correctly! I can’t honestly expound on the hilariously eccentric nature of it here, you’ll just have to read it…
The Pieces of Architecture by Adriano Viégas Medeiros, takes us on the journey of the Apprentice – from Operative to Speculative. This journey has been carried out since the times of operative Freemasonry but today the initiate works in the construction of his inner temple.
Nicholas Broadway gives us a very poignant feature for International Holocaust Remembrance Day, held on 27 January. His heartbreakingly haunting photography, taken on a visit to Auschwitz concentration camp, is a stark reminder of what occurs When Hate Goes Too Far.
Making a Mason in Prison – a really interesting contribution by Herve Hoint Lecoq who presents the story of John Wilkes who, it seems, might have been made a Mason while in prison.
Gerald Reilly begins a new thought-provoking series on ‘conjoined’ Masonry and ‘the soul of the body Masonic’. The four-part series will consider the defining characteristics, lessons and benefits of Three Degrees, the Order of the Royal Arch and when conjoined, Pure Ancient Masonry.
Kenneth Jack commemorates Burns’ Night with a Tribute to Scotland’s Bard and shares the intriguing story of William Robertson Smith and his collection of ‘Burnsiana’ held within the Robert Burns Library, at the Library of the Supreme Council of the Ancient & Accepted Scottish Rite, Southern Jurisdiction, Washington DC, USA.
In Stephen Goulding’s Tutorial Series II this month, he covers the subject of Perambulations. When we look at the ritual book the deacons are told to ‘perambulate’ with the candidate. So what does this really mean?
For those who have enjoyed Craig Weightman’s thought-provoking and inspiring monthly features, we have been given the opportunity to reproduce select extracts from his superb book ‘A Journey in Stone’.
As always, we also have the usual features of old books, new books, reviews of books, and a whole host of Masonic knowledge to keep you busy with your ‘daily advancement’.
We hope you enjoy this month’s issue. If you do – or if you don’t – drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
Until next time, stay safe and well.
Article by: Philippa Lee
Philippa Lee (writes as Philippa Faulks) is the author of eight books, an editor and researcher.
Philippa was initiated into the Honourable Fraternity of Ancient Freemasons (HFAF) in 2014.
Her specialism is ancient Egypt, Freemasonry, comparative religions and social history. She has several books in progress on the subject of ancient and modern Egypt. Selection of Books Online at Amazon