by Midnight Freemason Contributor
WB Darin A. Lahners
It's said that there is no such thing as bad publicity. That is, it seems unless you are a Freemason. While we do not have to deal with this as much in The United States as they do in the United Kingdom and elsewhere, we still see it. The latest incident of this was last evening's episode of America's Book of Secrets: The Freemason Factor which appeared on the "History" Channel.
The facts given by Bros. Hodapp, Alias, and de Hoyos were accurate as you might expect. However, there were facts that couldn't be further from the truth. The most elaborate of these false claims were centered around hearsay. Some of the "facts" reported in the special which classify as such are (this is by no means a complete list of the inaccuracies of the episode):
The Knights Templar found the grave of King Solomon under Temple Mount. Did the Templars find something under Temple Mount? We will never know. There's no evidence to discount this, however, finding the tomb of King Solomon probably would not have been suppressed by the Holy Church of Rome at that time. You're talking about an organization in the form of the Vatican which has been notorious for collecting artifacts to legitimize its power and authority. If the Templars had found his tomb, I highly doubt that this would not have come to light given the time period. The Church of Rome would have used this as a political tool to garnish more support for the Crusades.
Grain and Oil were used by George Washington during the laying of the Capital Cornerstone. Any Freemason would know that the wages of a Fellowcraft Mason would have been used. A quick google search of Washington Laying the Capitol Cornerstone would have correctly identified Corn, Wine, and Oil as being employed in the ceremony.
Jesse James was a member of and Albert Pike was the head of the Knights of The Golden Circle. This is complete drivel. There has never been any credible evidence to show either. On the contrary, the author of Jesse James and the Lost Templar treasure states in this article that he has not seen any evidence of either. https://www.thesquaremagazine.com/mag/article/202010jesse-james-and-the-lost-templar-treasure/
Another claim combined with the above is that Jesse James was a Freemason and that Freemasonry was instrumental in founding the Knights of The Golden Circle. Were there Freemasons that were members of the KGC? Undoubtedly. Was Jesse James a Freemason? There's no evidence of him ever taking the degrees of Freemasonry. There were also claims that the KGC ritual was borrowed from Freemasonry, but that the oaths were much darker. I will admit that there are some similarities in the ritual (which are also found in other Fraternal Bodies such as the Oddfellows and Knights of Pythias), but on the whole, I don't see a direct borrowing of the ritual. If you want to look at the KGC ritual yourself, feel free to inspect it yourself. to: http://www.phoenixmasonry.org/masonicmuseum/fraternalism/An-Authentic-Exposition-of-the-K-G-C-Knights-of-the-Golden-Circle.pdf
Freemasonry is a secret society and Freemasonry doesn't leave records of secret meetings. Seriously? Ask any lodge secretary about this. We love to take minutes. Many of the minutes of the various Grand Lodges are available on archive.org. Once again, a little bit of research would have revealed this. Furthermore, because the Bilderberg Meetings have similar rules of secrecy, Freemasonry is somehow in cahoots with the Bilderbergs. Have there been any Freemasons that have been invited to the Bildenberg Meetings? Yes. Gerald Ford and Prince Philip are confirmed as having been attendees.
Does this mean that Freemasonry is a hidden hand guiding the world? Of course not. Yes, it's well documented that Freemasonry had an influence on the founding of the United States. The idea that the Motto: Ordo Ab Chao (Order Out of Chaos), which is associated with 33 Degree Freemasonry and is displayed on a stained glass window in the House of the Temple because it was the motto of the First Supreme Council of the Thirty Third Degree, means that it's a mission statement for world domination is absurd. Of course, the portion of the window saying this was displayed, but there was no mention of Fiat Lux (Let There Be Light) being on the top of the very same window.
Does this mean that we want to change the world? WB Jeffrey Ballou states that: "There are many involved in current social movements that are going to be Freemasons, not because they are at the center of planning it all, but because they are drawn to making a better world." This was followed by Illustrious Brother Arturo De Hoyos saying: "The New World Order? I would like to simply see some order in the world. I would like to see people respecting each other. I would like to see people stop hating for ridiculous reasons." Lastly, MWB Akram Elias stated: "We don't want to keep repeating the past, the great American Experiment moves forward, we're making a leap. I don't call it an agenda, I call it a service to humanity." I'll let you draw your own conclusions.
I'd urge you to watch the episode itself and see what your impressions are. Ultimately, if it piques someone's interest enough to join the Fraternity, then I guess that the statement I allude to above is correct. I felt that it was a typical Freemason documentary that has to rely on sensational claims to keep the viewer interested. At the end of the day, I guess bad publicity is still publicity right?
WB Darin A. Lahners is our co-managing Editor. He is a Past Master of and Worshipful Master of St. Joseph Lodge No.970 in St. Joseph. He is also a plural member of Homer Lodge No. 199 (IL), where he is also a Past Master. He’s a member of the Scottish Rite Valley of Danville, a charter member of Illinois Royal Arch Chapter, Admiration Chapter No. 282 and is the current Secretary of the Illini High Twelve Club No. 768 in Champaign – Urbana (IL). You can reach him by email at email@example.com.
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