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Erik's Masonic Journey

Thu, 27 May 2004


# To one unfamiliar with Masonic symbolism, today's title may seem like bad rapper slang, but to the Freemason it has a stronger, more important significance. Today I bring your attention to The Letter "G", a Short Talk Bulletin from 1927. The author, an unknown brother, discusses the letter's significance and shares theories and ideas of his own. I have long been fascinated with this particular symbol, and find the ceremony surrounding its revelation to be a profound one. The article states,

That Freemasonry has in her letter "G" and its connotations a relationship with this ancient association of "letters four and science five -" that is, of Deity and science or knowledge - is not remarkable - rather it would extraordinary if she had not. In all ages and all religions, man has interwoven together his thought of spirit and matter, his ideas of relative and absolute. Freemasonry's "G" is but another of these conceptions, expressed in a symbol.
Later, he quotes Bro. Mackey, "[Mackey] regretted that the Roman 'g' ever found its way into our symbolism, and read the 'G' as a substitute for the Hebrew Yod, which in turn is a symbol of the tetragrammaton, or four-letter word." I've always liked the idea of Yod (י) being exchanged for the G in those situations where it would fit. The י is, by the way, used in the Scottish Rite's 14°, and as such is a symbol recognizable by many Masons. In The Initiatic Symbolism of Freemasonry, Bro. Tom Worrel also equates י with the G. It seems a popular concept.

In a second article called The Letter G, Bro. Mark Dwor traces the usage of that venerable initial back through the ages to the beginnings of modern Freemasonry. About this symbol's history, he writes,

The real issue about the letter G is not so much where it came from but how it gradually changed its original meaning and how it is that this new meaning has now become the predominant one.
He goes on to trace the dual meaning of this letter to the formation of the Blue Lodge's three-degree system, concluding that "when the new Second Degree was established [...], G also came to represent God, although the original geometrical meaning has never disappeared."

# As a followup to yesterday's post, I would like to offer for everybody's perusal the text of A Petition for Religious Inclusion, which seeks to remind us:

Let us once again recall that, in its long and glorious history, Freemasonry has provided the world with an inspiring example of the wisdom, strength and beauty in a fraternity based on religious tolerance and morality.
Please visit the petition's website and show your support.

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