Thursday, March 27, 2014

Masonic Protest in Brazil

Masons protest in a public square and demonstrate dissatisfaction with the Dilma Government The Masons invited society to reflect on the current situation in the Brazil. Carrying banners and placards, a Lodge of Masons organized a march to protest against the current political, economic and social situation faced by Brazil during the day last Saturday (March 22, 2014). Masons advocate freedom of expression, respect for the law and based upon their ethical principles, protested against corruption and high tax rates. They are asking the Judiciary to protect equal rights for all Brazilians, among other demands.

Worshipful Master Marcos Barbosa
The protest occurred in Getúlio Vargas Square in downtown Caratinga, Brazil. The march was organized by the Lodge "Loja Obreiros de Caratinga" and "Fraternidade Acadêmica de Caratinga." According to Marcos Barbosa, the Worshipful Master of Lodge Obreiros de Caratinga, other lodges in the country also engaged in protests to encourage Brazilian society to reflect on the political and economic situation in Brazil. Marcos Barbosa also highlighted that the march was supported by the Masonic Lodges of Ipanema and Simonésia, and some brothers in Manhuaçu and the lodges of Loja Caratinga Livre and Filhos da Acácia. During the protest, the Masons also warned of a possible dictatorship in the country.


Obrigado a Roberto Marilia e Raquel Borsari. 
Thanks to Roberto Marilia and Raquel Borsari.

The Key to the Lodge

The following is an excerpt from an article posted on the always interesting blog Raco de la Llum, run by a good friend and brother, Joaquim Villalta, V° Order, Gr.'. 9, in Barcelona.

Few Masonic Rites today still allude to the key of the Lodge. The Modern French Rite is among these. Certainly the allusion is discrete, but the fact remains that the key as a symbol is presented very clearly from the first grade, since it predetermines, in fact, the very opening of the work. The Key is placed as provided by Ritual on a table between the Wardens (particularly near the Senior Warden). The formal statement of this key part, in our days is one of the peculiarities of Modern Rite, thought it might be interesting to others to see what the presence of the Key to the Lodge means in our rituals.

What is a key?

It seems useful at the outset to define what usually characterizes a key in the well-understood material meaning of the word. It is an object, usually of modest size, which allows the use of a lock by actuating a bolt, having this function to prohibit or promote access to the space beyond the door in which it is installed.

Without the key, the lock is hopelessly immobile. By extension, the use of the key gives the power to open or close the door to the one who possesses it. Taken in a material sense, the key to a Lodge is therefore the instrument to open or close the door of the room in which the Rite should be performed.

What is the Key of a Lodge ?

It seems important to note that we understand the lodge to be an initiatory Community gathered by a common rituals and built around that ritual.

We know that the Rite, in itself, does not necessarily need a locale since it defines the space and time of its celebration, the only vehicle that we truly need! It is this close interaction between Rite and making ourselves the Lodge.

Starting from this, we are required to translate this notion of the Key as an object to a much more informal notion, as is any symbolic idea, the key of the Lodge becomes something more than a simple object, it is an essential ritual organ that allows us to open ourselves, and we at the other, through the intermediary of the Rite which may be understood as the door.

Similarly we speak of opening or closing a door, or opening or closing work: if the words are the same, we conceive that target on two different levels of understanding.

Initial conclusions

The lodge is ourselves, with and for others. The door of the lodge then is the Rite. The key allows the celebration of the Rite.

Joaquim Villalta, Vª Orden, Gr.·. 9
Miembro de la Academia Internacional de la Vª Orden - UMURM
Miembro de la Logia de Investigación "Los Modernos" - GLMAE

Sunday, March 23, 2014

The Modern Rite in North America & the Caribbean: Official Website

The Grand Lodge of the Mixed Modern Rite for North America and the Caribbean has officially published its website for the Obedience. It includes brief descriptivepages relating to the Modern Rite, the Blue Lodge, TheHigher Orders of Wisdom (Modern Rite Higher Degrees), the UMURM, and a link section. 

The Modern Rite evolved in the 18th Century in France,and has variously been known as the French Rite, the Modern Rite, and even the French Modern Rite. The GrandLodge of the Mixed Modern Rite for North America and the Caribbean uses the rituals of the Modern Rite as retained in Brazil from the earliest times. These versions of the rituals are closer to the original 1801 Rituals than are those practiced today by the GOdF. The Grand Lodge of the Mixed Modern Rite for North America and the Caribbean received its charter patent from  the Gran Logia Mixta de los Andes Ecuatoriales.

The sister organization of the Grand Lodge of the Mixed Modern Rite for North America and the Caribbean, the Supreme Council of the Modern Rite for North America and the Caribbean, administers the Higher Orders of Wisdom, received its Patent directly from the Supremo Conselho do Rito Moderno do Brasil. The intent of the website will be to grow resources for the benefit of the 
Obedience, its members, and the UMURM.

Please visit the site, and you may contact the Modern Rite through the link thereeither to inquire about the Modern Rite, the Grand Lodge, or other questions you wish to ask or information you wish to share.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Esoteric Freemasonry: An Introduction. - Mark E. Koltko-Rivera

Bro. Mark E. Koltko-Rivera, MM, 32*, K.T., Ph.D. will deliver a presentation, "Esoteric Freemasonry: An Introduction." He will describe what Esoteric Freemasonry is, what can be gained from its study, and how to go about beginning one's development in this area.

The presentation is taken from portions of Bro. Koltko-Rivera's forthcoming book, Esoteric Freemasonry: A Guide. Attendees will have the opportunity to pre-order this book at a reduced price. 

This is a rare opportunity to hear from a recognized scholar whose Masonic writings have appeared in _Heredom: The Proceedings of the Scottish Rite Research Society, in Philalethes: The Journal of Masonic Research, in the Proceedings of The American Lodge of Research, and in other Masonic publications. He has appeared as an expert on television, discussing Freemasonry on History Channel and Discovery Channel. He is also the author of Freemasonry: An Introduction

The presentation is sponsored by Heritage Lodge #371 F&AM, as part of their Stated Communication. The event will be held in the beautiful Ionic Room, on the Sixth Floor of Masonic Hall, at the Grand Lodge of the State of New York F&AM (see above for address and map).

Grand Lodge of the State of New York Free & Accepted Masons
71 West 23rd Street, New York, New York 10010

All Master Masons of jurisdictions in harmony with the Grand Lodge of New York F&AM are welcome to attend. Dress is conservative business.

Monday, March 17, 2014

The Rosicrucian Knight and The Modern Rite

The practice and conception of French or Modern Rite in Brazil stands out for its spirit of philosophical and progressive rational reform. That is why from the point of view of ritual, and with constant reflection on those values, the Brothers of the Grand Orient of Brazil, especially the Supremo Conselho do Rito Moderno, have endeavored to disseminate information pedagogically and to show its relevance to our century. Under the banner of the new Masonry, that is, Freemasonry for the third millennium, the fruit of this Masonic vision appears in a book published some years ago by the "Supreme Conselho do Rito Moderno" and translated into Spanish by the Circulo de Estudios del Rito Frances "Roëttiers de Montaleau."This text  was approved and updated by the Supremo Conselho do Brazil.

The philosophical foundations inherent in this Rite, are notably distinct from other existing religious and even mystical visions, which are further contrasted in the High Grades or Orders of Wisdom. For this reason, an interesting introductory work on the grade of Knight Rosicrucian Order of Wisdom IV Modern Rite this excerpt from the writings of M. •. Il. •. H. •. Onias Antonio Neto, Honorary Sovereign Grand Inspector General of the Supreme Council of the Modern Rite, located in Brazil , (and now in Eternal East) is offered here, and we are forever deeply grateful for his Masonic and human example and his teachings.

It must be noted at the outset that the Rosicrucian Knight Grade has nothing to do with AMORC, or other Rosicrucians or forms of Rosicrucianism.

Among the first times we see this degree in Masonry is in the Rite of Heredom or Perfection in 1765 in France, formalized in the regulation of 1784 that will gradually become the basis for what would later be known as the Modern or French Rite. The Degree of Knight Rose Croix comes to crown symbolically, since our entry into the Masonry, the events and the initiation of grade 4, I First Order, citing the resumption of our steps in the Order, the subsequent destruction of the Temple, the loss of our ideals, the loss of the word until the rebuilding of the Temple, the search for the lost word and in the end reunion. The words we learn when we are initiated, Liberty, Equality, Fraternity, now we are going to discover in their full and complete meaning. FREEDOM is the symbol of human thought. The body and the spirit is freed from all bonds. But is it sufficient that only man is to be free? Is it possible that freedom without balance will not lead to licentiousness or abuse by the strongest? Yes, so we will find the name of this balance in EQUALITY! We saw the progress we made to find meaning, the word imposed by Justice. Yet later we saw the need to unite the above words. Man does not impose justice to be charitable, but for the obligation to be fraternal. Then is found the third word, FRATERNITY.  In us as human beings, beings of a common origin, we have to consider all as Brothers, and such is the duty of solidarity. Not for compassion, humbling or exaltation, but for brotherly love.

We note other characteristic symbols of this degree, such as the Scientific Rose and Cross, which give their names to it.

What is its meaning?

The Rose is the symbol of discretion, purity, and of fire.
The Scientific Cruz, with equal arms, is a symbol of harmony, the result of the balance between opposites, and according to some authors, symbol of the crucible where flames the purifying fire (Rosa). In the Cross we see the initials of the Sacred Word of the degree.

What is its meaning?

Having researched all its possible meanings evident in the design of the Modern Rite, scientific and rational, we must accept the expression "Indefesso Nisu Repellamus ignorantiam", which translated means "With tireless effort we fight ignorance", which we always have a duty to uphold. We can however, conceivably interpret the above as "Igne Natura Renovatur Integra" which translated gives us "the whole of nature is renewed by fire", fire being already symbolized by the Rose.

With this interpretation we return to the Radiant Triangle which in the apprentice grade we interpret as "creation, destruction (by fire, whether physical or symbolic), and reconstruction," how nature works in its constant and eternal motion.

Any other interpretation that we present is only for investigation of religious or other rites. It should be mentioned once again that there is no religious connotation, whether Christian or of another religion, in the Rosicrucian Knight Degree in the Modern Rite, just as there is no Jewish connotation to be taken from the use of the Old Testament in earlier grades.

Another important Rosicrucian Knight Degree symbol is the pelican. Firstly you need to deconstruct the myth that the pelican rends its chest to feed her children with her own blood. What the bird is doing is pressing its crop with its beak to regurgitate food for her chicks. Nevertheless, demystifying the legend does not eliminate the symbolic value of the sacrifice that Masons should aim to practice to fulfill their obligations and promises, and to follow the ideals of the Sublime Order. In reaching the apex of symbolic and philosophical studies our commitments become more mature. The social edifice is crumbling.We must reconstruct it.

 Another item that deserves attention in our Rite is the interpretation of the sign of the Order or B.P. sign. The immobilization of arms should be interpreted as the absence of need for their use, and the spreading eagle wings formed by the hands,  represents the symbol of mental power.  The Mason who reaches the Grade of Rosicrucian Knight finds unnecessary physical work or exertion, since having maximized their mental powers, they are available to resolve problems universally.

Regarding the Sign of Recognition, made with the index, shows our concern and our grasp of the things of the Earth and the Universe. There are no limits imposed on the possibility of investigation in our search for truth. No dogmas to lead us, while we can investigate and discuss this degree from many approaches, we must pay attention not to stray from the fundamental principles of the Rite.

Joaquim Villalta, V ª Order · Gr. 9
Member of the Supreme Conselho do Rito Moderno - Brazil
Member of  Council of the Modern Sublime Rite for Ecuador
Member of the International Academy of the First Order V - UMURM
Member of the R:. Lodge of Research "Marquis de Gages" - GLMAE

Masonería del Tercer Milenio

Círculo de Estudios del Rito Francés "Roëttiers de Montaleau

Sublime Consejo del Rito Moderno para el Ecuador

Academia Internacional de la Vª Orden - UMURM

R:. Logia de Investigación "Marqués de Gages" - GLMAE

Friday, March 14, 2014

Project AWE: Art and Æsthetics in the Western Esoteric Traditions

 Project for Aesthetics of Western Esotericism: exploring lost connections between Hermetic-Cabalist traditions and the cultural icons of Western European heritage.  Conceived, Founded and Directed by Zhenya Gershman and John Slifko

Project AWE is a new endeavor initiated by Zhenya Gershman and John Slifko to explore the artistic and aesthetic implications of the Hermetic and Cabalist visions in Western society over the centuries. It is being launched using two internet modalities. The first is a web based format called Scoop-it, which allows the creation of a journal like website creating articles and drawing on the work of others as well as the authors themselves. Scoop-it is currently the engine that is providing the content of the project. A Facebook Community has also been set up to promote the information provided through the Scoop-it site. The Facebook Community page affords you as an individual to participate in the discussion and the project directly. The intent is not only to expand awareness of the aesthetic history of these traditions but also to encourage a greater and active discussion of the topics among members of interested communities and organizations, including artists, freemasons, and other esotericists.

This is how the founders describe what they seek to accomplish and share with this new electronic project:

tracing the esoteric chain between the art of Renaissance, Baroque, and Enlightenment

Exploring forgotten connections between Hermetic-Cabalist traditions and ART history

Through the esoteric lens, we provide new dimensions to understanding and experiencing the cultural icons of Western European heritage.
General information

We invite you to examine visual evidence which demonstrates the reflection and dissemination of esoteric ideas across time through painting, sculpture, music, architecture, publishing houses, and literature from Leonardo Da Vinci to Caspar David Friedrich.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Prendas and Soperas: Art Exhibit in Milwaukee

The creative and visionary work of artist, teacher, and master ceramicist Adam Posnak will on display in Milwaukee shortly. A reception is to be held on March 20th from 7pm - 11pm in the gallery space in the Pritzlaff Building. For more information, call 414-529- 8352.

Prendas are the spiritual vessels, made by Paleros (religious practitioners of Congo origin in Cuba) of varying materials and including many substances described by the Cuban anthropologist and Ethnographer Lydia Cabrera as a world in miniature. Soperas are the ceramic vessels used in the Regla de Ocha, of Yoruba origin as devotional receptacles for the veneration of the Orichas or spiritual beings of their faith.

Adam Posnak is a professional ceramicist and teacher, who produces decorative soperas and other ceramic vessels inspired by Afro-Cuban and Afro-Brazilian traditions and for use by their adherents.

Eine kleine Nachtmusik: A humorist and singer addresses being a Mason

Pablo Carbonell: Soy Masón (I'm a Mason)

Born in Cádiz on July 28th, 1962, Pablo Carbonell Sánchez Gijón, began his musical, acting, and comedy career in the early 1980s. He has had a successful career ever since, appearing on tv, the stage, film, and recording a number of albums with various groups. This piece is both humorous and insightful.

Gracias a M.'. I.'. Hna.'. Olga Vallejo Rueda 

Sunday, March 9, 2014

International Symposium: From absolutism to democracy (1815-2015)

XIV International Symposium on the History of Spanish Masonry, Spanish-Portuguese and American Masonry. 

From absolutism to democracy (1815-2015) 

The CEHME (Center for Historical Studies of Spanish Freemasonry) International Symposium on the History of the Spanish Freemasonry
will take place in the north of Spain, in Gijon, September 10-12, 2015. As of today, REHMLAC will be providing all information Regarding the organization of this unique academic event. Since 1983, under Professor José Antonio Ferrer Benimeli leadership, and now under that of the Association's Chairman Professor José Miguel Delgado Idarreta, CEHME has organized 13 symposia.

Bringing together an international cast of leading researchers, for over thirty years, updating and opening new lines of transdisciplinary research on the subject of Freemasonry that is about to celebrate its third century. The XIV International Symposium on the History of Spanish Freemasonry encourages scholars to share experiences and conclusions on the contextual framework of "Spanish-Portuguese and Latin American Freemasonry: From Absolutism to Democracy. (1815-2015)".

Versión Español
El CEHME (Centro de Estudios Históricos de la Masonería Española) traslada su ejemplar Symposium Internacional de Historia de la Masonería española al norte de España, en la ciudad de Gijón, del 10 al 12 de septiembre de 2015. A partir de este momento,este blog:  MASONERÏA EN ASTURIAS se hará eco de todas las informaciones relativas a la organización de este excepcional evento académico.

Desde 1983, de la mano del profesor José Antonio Ferrer Benimeli,  el CEHME organizó 13 symposia.
Reuniendo a un elenco internacional de prestigiosos investigadores, fue a lo largo de estos treinta años, actualizando y abriendo nuevas líneas de investigación transdisciplinares en torno a esta sociabilidad que está a punto de cumplir su tercer siglo de vida. El XIV Symposium Internacional de Historia de la Masonería Española emplaza a los estudiosos a compartir sus experiencias y conclusiones bajo el marco contextual de "La masonería hispano-lusa y americana. De los absolutismos a las democracias. (1815-2015)".

Version française
LE CEHME (Centre d’Études Historiques de la Franc-maçonnerie Espagnole) organisera son renommé Symposium International d’Histoire de la Franc-maçonnerie Espagnole au nord de l’Espagne, à Gijón, du 10 au 12 septembre 2015. Dès à présent, MASONERIA EN ASTURIAS  informera de l’organisation de cet exceptionnel événement académique. Depuis 1983, de la main du professeur José Antonio Ferrer Benimeli, , le CEHME organisa treize symposiums. Réunissant une longue liste de prestigieux chercheurs internationaux, il réussit à actualiser et à ouvrir de nouvelles voies de recherches interdisciplinaires autour de cette sociabilité qui bientôt fêtera son troisième siècle de vie. Le XIV Symposium International d’Histoire de la Franc-maçonnerie Espagnole appelle les chercheurs à partager leurs expériences et leurs conclusions sous le contexte de "La franc-maçonnerie hispano-portugaise et américaine. Des absolutismes aux démocraties (1815-2015)".

Correo electrónico/E-mail

Centro de Estudios Históricos de la Masonería Española (CEHME)
Facultad de Filosofía y Letras
Universidad de Zaragoza
50009 Zaragoza, España

Saturday, March 8, 2014

First Word: 2014 Esoteric Book Conference

The 2014 Esoteric Book Conference 

The 2014 Esoteric Book Conference will be in Seattle on September 6th and 7th, 2014.

Proposals for the 6th annual EBC are now being accepted.

 Speakers are encouraged to submit talks touching on historical or contemporary esoteric subjects. As the specific focus of the EBC is on Esoteric Books, presentations that relate to esoteric book[s] in particular or coincide with a new or recent release are given preference in determining the line up of guest speakers. We are after presentations as opposed to practical workshop submissions. Talks should be 45 minutes in length including time for questions. A short abstract describing the talk and its title should accompany your contact information.
The conference features an Art Show each year and artists are encouraged to submit art related to the esoteric field. In addition to the showcased artists, whose work is shown in a gallery format, the conference also features a selection of fine art prints by other esoteric artists.
If you are a interested in speaking at the Esoteric Book Conference or presenting art, please fill out our application form.
**The deadline for art and speaker proposals is end of day April 8th, 2014.

The EBC also accepts proposals for book signings and new book launches. If you are a publisher, bookseller, or author interested in either please visit this page and fill out the submission form.
***The deadline for book signings and book launch proposals is August 1st, 2014.
If you are a book seller and wish to vend at this years event please fill out the application form.  Space is limited this year and vendors will be accepted on a first come first serve basis.
If you are interested in advertising with the EBC or having us sell books on your behalf please fill out the form on our Vendor, Advertisement and EBC Representation page.

For more information on applications for vendors or speakers, or for general reservations, as well as to view a host of photos from previous conferences, follow the link to the conference site below:

Publication: New Sources on Women and Freemasonry

New Sources on Women and Freemasonry

Vol. 1 No. 1 of Ritual Secrecy, and Civil Society

Edited and Introduced by Pierre Mollier

There has been a great lack in international scholarship concerned with ritual and secrecy because so much of the good work is being done in languages that the mono-lingual English-speaking world has no idea exist. The strength of the articles in this collection will come as a considerable surprise even to experts in the field, because the research in Europe is very advanced and frankly is of such high quality that those who are not linguists should look to their laurels. Much is being done in discovering un-mined material in archives and the selections for this volume are a feast of new bibliographical references.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Feminine Grand Lodge of Romania

Marea Lojă Feminină a României

On March 1st the Feminine Grand Lodge of Romania celebrated the 92nd anniversary of its founding. In 1922, Colonel John T. Ulica 33 ° 99 °, Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Romania granted full autonomy to women to form a Grand Lodge of Feminine Freemasonry. The Feminine Grand Lodge of Romania thus became, an organization exclusively for women and was the first Feminine Grand Lodge anywhere to practice the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite.

Best wishes to the sisters for another 92!

Thanks to FenixNews and

Venerable Sister Olga Vallejo Rueda
Suprema Comendadora at Sublime Consejo del Rito Moderno para el Ecuador