The candidate then kneels, and the conductor ties a hoodwink very closely over both eyes, so that he cannot see.
After the candidate has said Amen, and the Lodge-room has been darkened by turning down the gaslights or lamps, the conductor takes the candidate by the right arm, assists him to arise, and they proceed to travel three times around the room, travelling with the sun. As they start, the conductor commences to relate to the candidate the following:
Conductor–Brother, it was the usual custom of our Grand Master, Hiram Abiff (this is the first he hears about Hiram Abiff), to enter into the unfinished “Sanctum Sanctorum, or Holy of Holies,” of King Solomon’s Temple, each day at high twelve, while the craft were called from labor to refreshment, for the purpose of drawing out his designs upon the trestle-board, whereby the craft might pursue their labors; after which, it was further his custom to offer up his devotions to the Deity. Then he would retire at the south gate of the outer courts of the Temple; and, in conformity with the custom of our Grand Master, whose memory we all so reverently adore, we will now retire at the south gate of the Temple.
They have now passed around the Lodge three times, and as
they approach the Junior Warden’s station in the south, he steps silently out from his seat to the floor, and confronts the blind-folded candidate, clinching him by the collar in a very rough manner, and at the same time exclaiming:
left to right: S. D., or Conductor. Candidate. First Ruffian, Jubela, generally the J. W. in the south. J. W. (Jubela, First Ruffian.)–Grand Master Hiram, I am glad to meet you thus alone. I have long sought this opportunity. You will remember you promised us, that when the Temple was completed, we should receive the secrets of a Master Mason, whereby we might travel in foreign countries, work, and receive Master’s wages. Behold! the Temple is now about to be completed, and we have not obtained that which we have so long sought. At first, I did not doubt your veracity; but now I do! (Gives candidate a sudden twitch by the collar.) I therefore now demand of you the secrets of a Master Mason!
Conductor (for candidate.)–Brother this is an unusual way of asking for them. It is neither a proper time nor place; but be true to your engagement, and I will be true to mine. Wait until the Temple is completed, and then, if you are found worthy and well qualified, you will unquestionably receive the secrets of a Master Mason; but, until then, you cannot.
Ruffian–This (shaking candidate) does not satisfy me! Talk not to me of time or place, but give me the secrets of a Master Mason, or I will take your life!
Conductor–I cannot; nor can they be given, except in the presence of Solomon, king of Israel, Hiram, king of Tyre, and myself.
Ruffian–That does not satisfy me. I’ll hear no more of your cavilling! (Clinches candidate more fiercely.) Give me the Master’s word, or I will take your life in a moment!
Conductor–I shall not!
left to right: S. D., or Conductor. Candidate. Second Ruffian, Jubelo, generally the S. W. in the west. The Ruffian gives the candidate a brush across the throat with his right hand, and at the same time relinquishes his hold with his left, steps quietly to one side, and permits the conductor and candidate td pass on to the Senior Warden’s station in the west, which is done by the conductor advancing very rapidly, pulling the candidate along with him. As they approach the west, the Senior Warden steps out as did the Junior Warden, facing the candidate, and, clinching him by the collar more roughly than the Junior Warden, exclaiming as follows:
S. W. (Second Ruffian.)–Give me the secrets of a Master Mason!
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.