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Archive for April 15, 2008

Why at the Northeast Corner

IN THE “Institutes of Menu,” the sacred book of the Brahmans, it is said: “If any one has an incurable disease, let him advance in a straight path towards the invincible northeast point, feeding on water and air till his mortal frame totally decays, and his soul becomes united with the Supreme.”

            It is at the same northeast point that those first instructions begin in Masonry which enables the true Mason to commence the erection of that spiritual temple in which, after the decay of his moral frame, “his soul becomes united with the Supreme.”

            In the important ceremony which refers to the northeast corner of the Lodge, the candidate becomes as one who is, to all outward appearance, a perfect and upright man and Mason, the representative of a spiritual cornerstone, on which he is to erect his future moral and Masonic edifice.

            This symbolic reference of the cornerstone, of a material edifice to a Mason when, at his first initiation, he commences the moral temple in his heart, is beautifully sustained when we look at all the qualities that are required to constitute a “well-tried, true, and trusty” cornerstone.

            The squareness of its surface, emblematic of morality; its cubical form, emblematic of firmness and stability of character; and the peculiar finish and fineness of the material, emblematic of virtue and holiness – show that the ceremony of the northeast corner of the Lodge was undoubtedly intended to portray, in the consecrated language of symbolism, the necessity of integrity and stability of conduct, of truthfulness and uprightness of character, and of purity and holiness of life, which, just at that time and in that place, the candidate is most impressively charged to maintain.