Public Lecture: Masonic Tracing Boards and The Ancient Mysteries

I will be speaking at The Chancellor Robert R Livingston Library and Museum, NYC, on February 23. The talk will start at 6:30 pm, and, with questions and perhaps a bit of hanging out after, it should go on until around 8 pm.

I will be discussing Masonic symbolism, and showing a few of my painting (which will be used to illustrate the talk).

If you’re interested to attend, you can find out more details, and RSVP, here.

Esoteric Orders, Magic, and Persevering to Authenticity

Esotericism — or at least the appearance of esotericism — is now everywhere. New Age and occult stores exist in probably every city in the West, as do countless Yoga studios (many of them selling books on Kundalini), and so on. The rituals of occult Orders can sometimes be found in mainstream bookstores and, of course, on the net. We do not have to go far out of our way to learn — at least superficially — about the alchemical process, the Kabbalah, the meaning of the runes, or anything else once considered the preserve of adepts.

What, then, are esoteric Orders for? Continue reading “Esoteric Orders, Magic, and Persevering to Authenticity”

The Failure of Freemasonry: And How to Revive the Fraternity

“Masonic membership in the United States has declined every year since 1959,” California Freemason and co-host, of The Masonic Roundtable, Jon T. Ruark tells us. A survey has been set up to enable Freemasons to report on their experiences of the fraternity, and what they would like more of, find inspiring, dislike, and so on. If you are a member of the fraternity you can fill it out here.

Let’s be blunt. Lodges and Grand Lodges are failing Freemasons — badly. But Freemasons are also failing themselves. And that might be worse. Continue reading “The Failure of Freemasonry: And How to Revive the Fraternity”

A Masonic-Catholic Rapprochement, And the ‘Fight Against Materialism’

Rome has made a gesture of outreach to “Brother Masons.” Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi — President of the Pontifical Council for Culture — makes the following statement in Il Timone magazine:

…These various declarations on the incompatibility of the two memberships in the Church or in Freemasonry, do not impede, however, dialogue, as is explicitly stated in the German Bishops’ document that had already listed the specific areas of discussion, such as the communitarian dimension, works of charity, the fight against materialism, human dignity and knowledge of each other. Continue reading “A Masonic-Catholic Rapprochement, And the ‘Fight Against Materialism’”

Academic Journal Correspondences Reviews The Crescent and The Compass

Justine Bakker, of Rice University, has reviewed my book The Crescent and The Compass for the online academic journal Correspondences. Since the book was written for a broader audience — not for academia per se — I was surprised to learn that the site was interested in reviewing it at all.

The journal describes itself as an “an international, peer-reviewed online journal dedicated to the academic study of ‘Western Esotericism’.” It’s interests range from Gnosticism to Traditionalism. Bakker herself has focused on the Nation of Islam and African-American religious experience — subjects that appear in the my book. Here is a snippet (if I can use such a non-academic term) of the review: Continue reading “Academic Journal Correspondences Reviews The Crescent and The Compass”

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