Dispatches from Maine

Just another person of little note writing about ordinary things. That I reside in Maine is icing on the cake.

08 March 2008

Albert Pike

At long last, I finally ordered a copy of Morals and Dogma. Having seen so many unopened copies floating around I had intended to wait until a kind soul offered me their copy for free. Unfortunately, having been in the Scottish Rite a few years now, my keen interest in reading Albert Pike's magnum opus has outweighed my patience. I have one other work by Pike, Sepher h'Debarim, and a daunting text it is. I have tried, on several occasions, to really concentrate and read this book. While I did learn a number of interesting things, some of his ideas were then, and are now, called into question by professional scholars, raising as to the validity of his other translations. It is also more of a reference work, to be used when studying the origin and relationship of words used in the Craft and Scottish Rite Degrees. Hopefully, Morals and Dogma will be less impenetrable than the Sepher h'Debarim!

On the topic of Pike and Scottish Rite ritual. I have become quite interested in the history and development of Scottish Rite ritual here in the Northern Masonic Jurisdiction. These previous ten years have found the Craft ritual in general, and specifically here in Maine, as my primary focus of study. As I ascend through the Yates Lodge of Perfection here in Portland, the Scottish Rite ritual is becoming an item of strong interest. I have been given access to read the most recent versions of the 4th-16th degrees, and as always there are more questions than answers. With any luck I will be able to obtain access to the versions over the last hundred years or so and begin to understand how the degrees have grown and changed.

Labels: , , , ,


At 10 March, 2008 16:48 , Blogger Robert G. Davis said...

Welcome to Albert Pike! Let me make a couple of suggestions:

Pike is to be studied like a fine sherry is to be sipped, or a cuban to be savored. These are his lectures on the degrees of the Rite for the Mother Supreme Council. They should be studied with the degree; one degree at a time. This is not a book to devour from cover to cover in one week, like one might a good novel.

Second, never forget that each chapter represents a lecture for a degree of the Rite. Read it out loud as if you were delivering the lecture in lodge. It will make Pike a lot easier to enjoy and understand.

Robert G. Davis
Secretary, Guthrie Scottish Rite Bodies


Post a Comment

<< Home