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more light #336

Old LEO Letters

by Ed Halpaus
Grand Lodge Education Officer
Grand Lodge of A. F. & A. M. of Minnesota

One of the things the anti-Masons seem to like to do is to vilify Brother Albert Pike: In particular they like to tell anyone and everyone who will listen that Pike was a devil worshiper, and along with that they also want to convince the uninformed that Pike and all Masons in general worship a Masonic god whose name is The Great Architect of the Universe. What they may or may not realize, and what they don’t want to accept is the truth, and the truth is that Pike was a Christian, and ‘The Great Architect of the Universe’ is a interfaith name coined by the Christian theologian John Calvin (he coined a number of names he used for God), and that Freemasonry adopted his name or term (The Great Architect of the Universe) for use in Lodges where Masons of more than one religion may sit in Lodge together. Using an interfaith name, when Deity is referred to, is a good way to not promote one religion over another among friends and Brothers; it allows each man to accept the prayer as his own to the Deity of his religion when it is given by one Mason on behalf of all of us. The prayer is ended with the traditional word “Amen” to which all Masons can truthfully reply ‘so may it be,’ by using an archaic word to say “So Mote It Be.”

Anti-Masons love to proof-text Brother Pike in his book Morals and Dogma. Sometimes they will quote him, but most of the time they will misquote him by proof-texting portions of Morals and dogma to make it look like Pike wrote something he didn’t write. One portion the enemies of Masonry never quote from pike is found on page 134U (meaning page 134 upper portion of the page). Page 134 is a part of the 8th Degree of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry; reading the 8th degree will capture the attention of any Mason who would read it, and I think, anyone who reads will want to study that degree and others to learn more. Here is what pike wrote on page 134U: “Speak kindly to your erring Brother! God pities him; Christ has died for him. Providence waits for him: Heaven’s mercy yearns towards him; and Heaven’s spirits are ready to welcome him back with joy. Let your voice be in unison with all those powers that God is using for his recovery!”

Those words from Brother Pike on page 134U of Morals and Dogma don’t sound like the words someone would use if they didn’t believe in God and in Pikes Case his Christian religion.

Don’t believe for one moment the lies and untruths the anti-Masons of the world – the enemies of Masonry – want everyone to believe. What is true is that the malarkey and falsities of these anti-Masons cannot stand up to investigation, but what Masonry is, and stands for, can stand up to investigation and study. So if you hear something that makes you wonder – check it out; you’ll enjoy the process – or ask one of your Brothers who likes to do research and study to help you check it out, you’ll still enjoy the process as well as the learning that results.

Also don’t believe that Morals and Dogma is a hard or difficult book to read – it isn’t – any Mason is capable of reading and understanding what Pike wrote in it; although speed reading and understanding it, doesn’t seem to work. One can read the book slowly and deliberately with a pen and paper to take notes etc. and thus enjoy what Pike had to say.

Sadly, it has been reported that one Masonic library has been disposing of excess copies of Morals and Dogma by destroying them or tossing them into dumpsters. If you can get one of those copies others no longer want – get it – and begin to read the book: There’s good information in it. (or Check with Harold Davidson at for a good used copy, or on-line for an e-copy of the book.

One final comment: The anti-Masons want everyone to believe that Pike wrote for all of Freemasonry – that he was and is “The” authority, and all Masons adhere to his writings; he wasn’t, isn’t, and we don’t. But still his book, Morals and Dogma, does contain some good information and is a pleasure to read. When you read it pay particular attention to page ivm (Page iv of the preface in the middle of the page): “Every one is entirely free to reject and dissent from whatsoever herein may seem to him to be untrue or unsound.” Albert Pike, just like the rest of us, wrote for himself only, not for our entire fraternity; this is another truth the anti-Masons – the enemies of Masonry – don’t want to accept.

“The belief in a God All Powerful wise and good, is so essential to the moral order of the world and to the happiness of man, that arguments which enforce it cannot be drawn from too many sources nor adapted with too much solicitude to the different characters and capacities impressed with it.” –James Madison, letter to Frederick Beasley, 1825

James Madison is the 4th President of the United States; he is thought to be a Mason, but no documentation or proof of his being initiated has been found. I good book for research into questions like this is “Masonic Membership of the Founding Fathers” by Ronal Heaton and available from the Masonic Service Association of North America.

Words to Live by:  “It is the duty of all men in society, publicly, and at stated seasons, to worship the SUPREME BEING, the great Creator and Preserver of the universe. And no subject shall be hurt, molested, or restrained, in his person, liberty, or estate, for worshipping GOD in the manner most agreeable to the dictates of his own conscience; or for his religious profession or sentiments; provided he doth not disturb the public peace, or obstruct others in their religious worship.” –John Adams, Thoughts on Government, 1776 –

President John Adams was not a Mason, and even though he is closely linked with other Founding Fathers who were Masons he was an anti-Mason who wrote letters as such, and his son President John Quincy Adams was a devout anti-Mason.

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Last modified: March 22, 2014