Secret society - free mason

About secret societies, free masonry, simbols, rithuals, order, ... Some articles are taken from "Mysteries of Freemasonry" by Captain William Morgan "The Symbolism of Freemasonry" by Albert G. Mackey, M.D. 1882. "Secret Societies" by David MacDill, Jonathan Blanchard, and Edward Beecher Those three books have free licence and no copyright law has broken.

Monday, January 22, 2007

The Rite of Investiture

Another ritualistic symbolism, of still more importance and interest, is the rite of investiture.
The rite of investiture, called, in the colloquially technical language of the order, the ceremony of clothing, brings us at once to the consideration of that well-known symbol of Freemasonry, the LAMB-SKIN APRON.
This rite of investiture, or the placing upon the aspirant some garment, as an indication of his appropriate preparation for the ceremonies in which he was about to engage, prevailed in all the ancient initiations. A few of them only it will be requisite to consider.
Thus in the Levitical economy of the Israelites the priests always wore the abnet, or linen apron, or girdle, as a part of the investiture of the priesthood. This, with the other garments, was to be worn, as the text expresses it, "for glory and for beauty," or, as it has been explained by a learned commentator, "as emblematical of that holiness and purity which ever characterize the divine nature, and the worship which is worthy of him."
In the Persian Mysteries of Mithras, the candidate, having first received light, was invested with a girdle, a crown or mitre, a purple tunic, and, lastly, a white apron.
In the initiations practised in Hindostan, in the ceremony of investiture was substituted the sash, or sacred zennaar, consisting of a cord, composed of nine threads twisted into a knot at the end, and hanging from the left shoulder to the right hip. This was, perhaps, the type of the masonic scarf, which is, or ought to be, always worn in the same position.
The Jewish sect of the Essenes, who approached nearer than any other secret institution of antiquity to Freemasonry in their organization, always invested their novices with a white robe.
And, lastly, in the Scandinavian rites, where the military genius of the people had introduced a warlike species of initiation, instead of the apron we find the candidate receiving a white shield, which was, however, always presented with the accompaniment of some symbolic instruction, not very dissimilar to that which is connected with the masonic apron.
In all these modes of investiture, no matter what was the material or the form, the symbolic signification intended to be conveyed was that of purity.

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