Morals and Dogma of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry
Prepared for the Supreme Council of the
Thirty-Third Degree for the Southern Jurisdiction of the
Entered according to Act of Congress, in
the year 1871, by Albert Pike, In the Office of the Librarian of Congress, at
An hundred years ago
it had become known that the קרש [Kadesh] were the
Templars under a veil, and therefore the Degree was proscribed, and, ceasing to
be worked, became a mere brief and formal ceremony, under another name. Now,
from the tomb in which after his murders he rotted, Clement the Fifth howls
against the successors of his victims, in the Allocution of Pio Nono against
the Free-Masons. The ghosts of the dead Templars haunt the
An enemy of the Templars shall tell us the secret of this Papal hostility
against an Order that has existed for centuries in despite of its anathemas, and
has its Sanctuaries and Asyla even in
It will be easy, as we read, to separate the false from the true, the audacious conjectures from the simple facts.
"A power that ruled without antagonism and without concurrence, and
consequently without control, proved fatal to the Sacerdotal Royalties; while
the Republics, on the other hand, had perished by the conflict of liberties and
franchises, which in the absence of all duty hierarchically sanctioned and
enforced, had soon become mere tyrannies, rivals one of the other. To find a
stable medium between these two abysses, the idea of the Christian
Hierophants was to create a society devoted to abnegation by solemn vows,
protected by severe regulations; which should be recruited by initiation, and
which, sole depositary of the great religious and social secrets, should make
King and Pontiffs, without exposing it to the corruptions of Power. In that was
the secret of that
presided at the foundation of the great religious orders, so often at
war with the secular authorities, ecclesiastical or civil. Its realization was
also the dream of the dissident sects of Gnostics or Illuminati who pretended
to connect their faith with the primitive tradition of the Christianity of
whose history is so imperfectly known, were those terrible conspirators. In
1118, nine Knights Crusaders in the East, among whom were Geoffroi de
Saint-Omer and Hugues de Payens, consecrated themselves to religion, and took
an oath between the hands of the Patriarch of Constantinople, a See always
secretly or openly hostile to that of
re-building, formally predicted by the Judaizing Mystics of the earlier ages,
had become the secret dream of the Patriarchs of the Orient. The
or Poor Fellow-Soldiery of the Holy House of the Temple intended to be
rebuilt, took as their models, in the Bible, the Warrior-Masons of Zorobabel,
who worked, holding the sword in one hand and the trowel in the other.
Therefore it was that the Sword and the Trowell were the insignia of the
Templars, who subsequently, as will be seen, concealed themselves under the
name of Brethren Masons. [This name, Freres Macons in the
French, adopted by way of secret reference to the Builders of the
"The trowel of the Templars is quadruple, and the triangular plates of it are arranged in the form of a cross, making the Kabalistic pantacle known by the name of the Cross of the East. The Knight of the East, and the Knight of the East and West, have in their titles secret allusions of whom they were at first the successors.
"The secret thought of Hugues de Payens, in founding his Order, was not exactly to serve the ambition of the Patriarchs of Constantinople. There existed at that period in the East a Sect of Johannite Christians, who claimed to be the only true Initiates into the real mysteries of the religion of the Saviour. They pretended to know the real history of Yesus the ANOINTED, and, adopting in part the Jewish traditions and the tales of the Talmud, they held that the facts recounted in the Evangels are but allegories, the key of which Saint John gives, in saying that the world might be filled with the books that could be written upon the words and deeds of Jesus Christ; words which, they thought, would be only a ridiculous exaggeration, if he were not speaking of an allegory and a legend, that might be varied and prolonged to infinity.
Johannites ascribed to
"Thus the Order of the Knights of the Temple was at its very origin devoted to the cause of opposition to the tiara of Rome and the crowns of Kings, and the Apostolate of Kabalistic Gnosticism was vested in its chiefs. For Saint John himself was the Father of the Gnostics, and the current translation of his polemic against the heretical of his Sect and the pagans who denied that Christ was the Word, is throughout a misrepresentation, or misunderstanding at least, of the whole Spirit of that Evangel.
"The tendencies and tenets of the Order were enveloped in profound mystery, and it externally professed the most perfect orthodoxy. The Chiefs alone knew the aim of the Order: the Subalterns followed them without distrust.
influence and wealth, then to intrigue, and at need to fight, to establish
the Johannite or Gnostic and Kabalistic dogma, were the object and means
proposed to the initiated Brethren. The Papacy and the rival monarchies,
they said to them, are sold and bought in these days, become corrupt, and
tomorrow, perhaps, will destroy each other. All that will become the heritage
like all other Secret Orders and Associations, had two doctrines, one concealed
and reserved for the Masters, which was Johannism; the other public, which was
the Roman Catholic. Thus they deceived the adversaries whom the sought
to supplant. Hence Free-Masonry, vulgarly imagined to have begun with the Dionysian
Architects or the German Stone-workers, adopted
[For the Johannism of the Adepts was the Kabalah of the earlier Gnostics, degenerating afterward into those heretical forms which Gnosticism developed, so that even Manes had his followers among them...]
"The better to succeed and win partisans, the Templars sympathized with regrets for dethroned creeds and encouraged the hopes of new worships, promising to all liberty of conscience and a new orthodoxy that should be the synthesis of all the persecuted creeds."
[It is absurd to suppose that men of intellect adored a monstrous idol called Baphomet, or recognized Mahomet as an inspired prophet. Their symbolism, invented ages before, to conceal what it was dangerous to avow, was of course misunderstood by those who were not adepts, and to their enemies seemed to be pantheistic. The calf of gold, made by Aaron for the Israelites, was but one of the oxen under the laver of bronze, and the Karobim on the Propitiatory, misunderstood. The symbols of the wise always become the idols of the ignorant multitude. What the Chiefs of the Order really believed and taught, is indicated to the Adepts by the hints contained in the high Degrees of Free-Masonry, and by the symbols which only the Adepts understand.
[The Blue Degrees
are but the outer court or portico of the
"The seeds of
decay were sown in the Order of the
"Hugues de Payens himself had not the keen and far-sighted intellect nor that grandeur of purpose which afterward distinguished the military founder of another soldiery that became formidable to kings. The Templars were unintelligent and therefore unsuccessful Jesuits.
watchword was, to become wealthy, in order to buy the world. They became so,
and in 1312 they possessed in
impossible to unfold to the people the conspiracy of the Templars against the
Thrones and the Tiara. It was impossible to expose to them the doctrines of the
Chiefs of the Order. [This would have been to initiate the multitude into the
secrets of the Masters, and to have uplifted the veil of
"The end of
the drama is well known, and how Jacques de Molai and his fellows perished in
the flames. But before his execution, the Chief of the doomed Order organized
and instituted what afterward came to be called the Occult, Hermetic, or
Scottish Masonry. In the gloom of his prison, the Grand Master created four
Metropolitan Lodges, at
"The Pope and the King soon after perished in a strange and sudden manner. Squin de Florian, the chief denouncer of the Order, died assassinated. In breaking the sword of the Templars, they made of it a poniard; and their proscribed trowels thence-foreward built only tombs."
[The Order disappeared at once. Its estates and wealth were confiscated, and it seemed to have ceased to exist. Nevertheless it lived, under other names and governed by unknown Chiefs, revealing itself only to those who, in passing through a series of Degrees, had proven themselves worthy to be entrusted with the dangerous Secret. The modern Orders that style themselves Templars have assumed a name to which they have not the shadow of a title.]
"The Successors of the Ancient Adepts Rose-Croix, abandoning by degrees the austere and hierarchial Science of their Ancestors in initiation, became a Mystic Sect, united with many of the Templars, the dogmas of the two intermingling, and believed themselves to be the sole depositaries of the secrets of the Gospel of St. John, seeing in its recitals an allegorical series of rites proper to complete the initiation.
"The Initiates, in fact, thought in the eighteenth century that their time had arrived, some to found a new Hierarchy, others to overturn all authority, and to press down all the summits of the Social Order under the level of Equality."