RAM Library

An Explanation Of The Royal Arch Degree

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This concludes all that I propose to say about the meaning of the RA., not that I have exhausted the subject, for the degree deserves years of study and would justify the writing of many books, being indeed one of the deepest and most mystical degrees in Freemasonry, but my purpose will have been achieved if I have indicated a certain line of study and meditation to my readers, and I can assure them that I have left many interesting problems to be solved by them. Some of my readers may be surprised that I have not written a chapter on the interesting lecture called "An Explanation of the Jewel." My reason for not attempting to do so is that as it stands it contains a very valuable piece of Geometrical Mysticism which is complete in itself, and while I do not say that it does not possess further inner meanings, I feel that it is so seldom given in Chapter that my best service is to advise members to study it for themselves, carefully, over and over again. The reason why it is not given in Chapter is not entirely due to the fact that it would lengthen the ceremony to an inordinate degree, but rather because without a blackboard on which to draw the diagrams it would be largely unintelligible, and since these are printed with the lecture it is really more convenient for brethren to study it at home. In order to understand this lecture it is essential that the Comp’s. should have a fair knowledge of Geometry. On the other hand, unless a brother understands the inner meaning of the actual ceremony itself much of this lecture must appear barren and meaningless, and it therefore seemed to me more important to explain the ground work of the ceremony in a small and handy book than to attempt to produce a large work of which perhaps half would fail to interest my readers.

I have been encouraged to write this book because of the enthusiastic welcome with which my books dealing with the meaning of the three Craft degrees have been received, and because I have had numerous requests from the readers of those books for a similar work on the RA. I trust that they will find this book equally useful to them, and would suggest that it is their duty to advise young masons to take the RA. degree in order that they may, at any rate in symbolism, complete the search which they started as M.M.s.

J. S. M. Ward

For centuries had Freemasonry existed ere modern political controversies were ever heard of, and when the topics which now agitate society were not known, but were all united in brotherhood and affection. I know the institution to  be founded on the great principles of charity, philanthropy and brotherly love.  BULWER.

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