J. W.–Brethren, you are accordingly at refreshment.
It should be remarked here, that there is a similar column on the Senior Warden’s desk, which is always placed in a horizontal position (i.e., turned down on its side) when the Junior Warden’s column is up, and vice versâ. When the Lodge is opened, the Junior Warden’s column is turned down, and the Senior Warden’s turned up, at his right hand.
The brethren are now allowed a few minutes for recreation, styled by Masons refreshment; during which time the candidate is being prepared in the ante-room, and the Lodge made ready for the remaining portion of the ceremony of initiation.
This latter is accomplished as follows: a canvas, seven feet long and about six feet wide, with five or six strong loops on each side, is produced from a closet or chest in the room; and a buckskin bag, stuffed with hair, about the size of two boxing-gloves, is taken from the same receptacle. These implements are both used as will be described hereafter.
The room is cleared by removing the altar and lights, and the two large pillars used in the Second Degree. By this time the candidate is dressed, his apron is tied on as a Master Mason,
with the right-hand corner tucked up, and he wears a yoke with a Senior Warden’s jewel attached to it. In some Lodges, the brethren on this occasion attire the candidate with a very rich apron and yoke.
When the candidate is fully dressed, the door is unceremoniously thrown open, and he, in company with others, is permitted to enter the Lodge. His friends now approach him, and congratulate him upon his Masonic appearance, asking him how he likes the degree, and if he is not glad he is through, &c., &c.
The object of this is to mislead the candidate, and to impress upon his mind the idea that there is no more of the ceremony, and that his initiation is completed.
Worshipful Master gives one rap with his gavel (•).
J. W.–Brethren, you are now called from refreshment to labor again. (Gives one rap (•), steps to his desk, and turns the small column down on its side, as already explained.)
At the same time the Senior Warden steps to his stand, and turns up the column on his desk at his right. The brethren then all take their seats, and the candidate with them.
W. M.–Brother Senior Warden, do you know any further business before this Lodge of Master Masons before we proceed to close?
S. W. (rising to his feet and making the sign of a Master Mason.)–Nothing, Worshipful.
W. M.–Have you any thing to offer, Brother Junior Warden?
J. W. (making sign.)–Nothing, Worshipful.
W. M.–Have you any thing on your desk, Brother Secretary?
Sec. (makes the sign, see Fig. 6, p. 18.)–Nothing, Worshipful.
W. M.–Has any brother present any thing to offer for the benefit of Masonry? (nothing being said, Worshipful Master continues): We will then proceed to close; but, before doing so, I would say to Brother Gabe (the candidate)–Is he present?
Some Brother–He is.
W. M.–Brother Gabe, you will please approach the east.
Conductor (S. D.) leads the candidate up in front of the Master’s seat in the east.
(The author would here remark, with regard to the matter of closing the Lodge, and asking the Wardens if they know any thing further before the Lodge, previous to closing, that it is a ruse to deceive the candidate, as the Master has no intention of closing until the ceremony of initiation has been concluded.)
After the candidate is conducted to the east, before the Master, the conductor takes his position behind the candidate, with a hoodwink either in his hand or secreted in his pocket.
W. M. (looking candidate seriously in the face.)–Brother Gabe, I presume you now consider yourself a Master Mason, and, as such, entitled to all the privileges of a Master Mason, do you not?
W. M.–I presumed that you did from the jewel that you wear, it being the Senior Warden’s jewel.
W. M.–Brother Gabe, you are not yet a Master Mason, neither do I know that you ever will be, until I know how well you will withstand the amazing trials and dangers that await you. The Wardens and brethren of this Lodge require a more satisfactory proof of your fidelity to your trust, before they are willing to intrust you with the more valuable secrets of this Degree. You have a rough and rugged road to travel, beset with thieves, robbers, and murderers; and should you lose your life in the attempt, it will not be the first instance of the kind, my brother. You will remember in whom you put your trust, with that divine assurance, that “he who endureth unto the end, the same shall be saved.” Heretofore you have had some one to pray for you, but now you have none. You must pray for yourself. You will therefore suffer yourself to be again hoodwinked, and kneel where you are, and pray orally or mentally, as you please. When through, signify by saying Amen, and arise and pursue your journey.
Moe is the founder of GnosticWarrior.com. He is a father, husband, author, martial arts black belt, and an expert in Gnosticism, the occult, and esotericism.