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Preston Illustrations of Masonry- Book 2 General Remarks

Section 1 - General Remarks.

Section 2 - The Ceremony of Opening and Closing A Lodge

Section 3 - Remarks on the First Lecture.

Section 4 - Remarks on the Second Lecture.

Section 5 - Remarks on the Third Lecture

Section 6 - Of the Ancient Ceremonies of the Order

Section 5. - Remarks on the Third Lecture

In treating with propriety on any subject, it is necessary to observe a regular course. In the former Degrees of Masonry, we have recapitulated the contents of the several Sections, and should willingly have pursued the same plan in this Degree, did not the variety of particulars of which it is composed, render it impossible to give an abstract, without violating the laws of the Order. It may be sufficient to remark, that, in twelve Sections, of which the lecture consists, every circumstance that respects government and system, antient lore and deep research, curious invention and ingenious discovery, is accurately traced, while the mode of proceeding on public as well as on private occasions is satisfactorily explained. Among the brethren of this degree, the land-marks of the Order are preserved; and from them is derived that fund of informations, which expert and ingenious craftsmen only can afford, whole judgement has been matured by years and experience. To a complete knowledge of this lecture, few attain; but it is an infallible truth, that he who acquires by merit the mark of pre-eminence which this degree affords, receives a reward which amply compensates all his past diligence and assiduity.

From this class, the rulers of the Craft are selected; as it is only from those who are capable of giving instruction, that we can properly expect to receive it.

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The First Section

The ceremony of initiation into the third degree, is particularly specified in this branch of the lecture, and many useful instructions are given.

Such is the importance of this Section, that we may safely declare, that the person who is unacquainted with it, is ill qualified to act as a ruler or governor of the work of Masonry.

Prayer at Initiation into the Third Degree

O Lord, direct us to know and serve thee aright! prosper our laudable undertakings! and grant, that, as we increase in knowledge, we may improve in virtue, and still farther promote thy honour and glory! Amen

Charge at Initiation into the Third Degree

Brother - Your zeal for our institution, the progress you have made in our art, and your conformity to our regulations, have pointed you out as a proper object of favour and esteem.

In the character of a Master mason, you are henceforth to correct the errors and irregularities of uninformed brethren, and guard them against a breach of fidelity. To improve the morals and manners of men in society, must be your constant care; and with this view, you are to recommend to your inferiors, obedience and submission; to your equals, courtesy and affability; to your superiors, kindness and condescension. Universal benevolence you are to inculcate; and, by the regularity of your behaviour, afford the best examples for the conduct of others. The ancient landmarks of our Order, now instructed to your care, you are to preserve sacred and inviolable; and never suffer an infringement of our rites, or countenance a deviation from our established usages and customs.

Duty, honour, and gratitude, now bind you to be faithful to every truth; to support with becoming dignity your new character; and to enforce, by example and precept, the tenets of our system. Let no motive, therefore, make you swerve from your duty, violate your vows, or betray your trust; but be true and faithful, and imitate the example of that celebrated artist whom you have once represented. Thus your exemplary conduct must convince the world, that merit is the title to our privileges, and that on you our favours have not been undeservedly bestowed.

The Second Section

The Second Section is an introduction to the proceedings of a Chapter of Master-masons, and illustrates several points well known to experienced craftsmen. It investigates, in the ceremony of opening a chapter, the most important circumstances in the two preceding degrees.

The Third Section

The Third Section commences the historical traditions of the Order, which are chiefly collected from sacred record, and other authentic documents.

The Fourth Section

The Fourth Section farther illustrates the historical traditions of the Order, and presents to view a finished picture, of the utmost consequence to the fraternity.

The Fifth Section

The Fifth Section continues the explanation of the historical traditions of the Order.

The Sixth Section

The Sixth Section concludes the historical traditions of the Order.

The Seventh Section

The Seventh Section illustrates the hieroglyphical emblems restricted to the Third Degree, and inculcates many useful lessons, in order to extend knowledge, and promote virtue.

This Section is indispensably necessary to be understood by every Master of a lodge.

The Eighth Section

The Eighth Section treats of the government of the society, and the disposition of the rulers in different degrees. It is therefore generally rehearsed at installations.

The Ninth Section

The Ninth Section recites the qualifications of the rulers, and illustrates the ceremony of installation, in the grand lodge, as well as in private lodges.

The Tenth Section

The Tenth Section comprehends the ceremonies of constitution and consecration, with a variety of particulars explanatory of those ceremonies.

The Eleventh Section

The Eleventh Section illustrates the ceremonies used at laying the foundation stones of churches, chapels, palaces, hospitals, &c. also the ceremonies observed at the Dedication of Lodges, and at the Interment of Master Masons.

The Twelfth Section

The Twelfth Section contains a recapitulation of the most essential points of the lectures in all the degrees, and corroborates the whole by infallible testimony.

Having thus given a general summary of the lectures restricted to the different degrees of masonry, and made such remarks on each degree, as may tend to illustrate the subjects treated, little farther will be wanted to encourage the zealous mason to persevere in his researches. He who has traced the Art in a regular progress, from the commencement of the First to the conclusion of the Third Degree, according to the plan here laid down, will have amassed an ample store of useful learning; he will reflect with pleasure on the good effects of his past diligence and attention, and by applying the whole to the general advantage of society, will secure to himself the veneration of masons, and the approbation of all good men.

Home Lectures of the Craft Lectures of the Holy Royal Arch Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite The Royal Order of Scotland York Rite Side Degrees English Knights Templar Order of Women Freemasons Walter Leslie Wilmshurst Preston Illustrations of Masonry Masonic Tutor Support

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