Archive for the ‘MAURICIO JAVIER CAMPOS: The Good Shepherd: Beliefs Society Power’ Category
Mauricio Javier Campos
The Good Shepherd: Beliefs, Society, Power
XIX Regional History Congress “Juan Carlos Castagnino,”
Mar del Plata, 2008
An introduction to masonic history. An interview-summary about its development between 1870 and 1950- from the Lodges political interventionism up to its deepest inclusion into religious institutions. The Good Shepherd symbolism, veiled aspects of this political and religious figure which involves concepts like language, power and secrecy, authority and social influence, and which has been adopted by different societies.
“The Jewish have their own Cosa Nostra in these universities.”
(Second season, 7th episode, 2000)
An introduction to masonry: “ History of Tandil´s lodge Luz del Sud,” an interview with the author by Paula Rodríguez, 2005.
In 1998, the writer Mauricio Campos focused his interest on local history, more precisely, on masonry. In the last few years, he has taken part in conferences organized by the Gabinete Marplatense de Estudios Históricos Regionales, which has been the trigger for his monographies publications.
“On Masons and Tombs. The Masonic History and the weekly Light and Truth at the beginnings of the 20th Century complement last year research named Preliminary notes about Masonry in Tandil.” the author explained.
Both researches aim at providing a general idea about masonry in Tandil and its connection with national institutions. First, the author emphasized number 39 lodge Luz del Sud, as it has been nationally registered. Tandil´s history unveils two lodges: Luz del Sud- founded in 1872 and a less familiar one, Martín Rodríguez, originated in 1909. He also pointed out that the title “On Masons and Tombs” puns on “ On Heroes and Tombs,” since Sábato collaborated with Verbum and Liberalis magazines- two masonic publications. It is also associated with the symbolism of the initial death, which is crucial for the masonic masters. It is a ceremony or ritual that exalts a candidate to a master position and indicates the culmination of a stage in life and the beginning of a more perfect one.
This work enlarges the information in the previous one, focusing on freemasonry linked to journalism. The writer stated that he searched for documents and archives in newspapers, which reflected the lodge´s doctrine, ideals, thoughts and philosophy. These were later contextualised by taking data from bibliography based on general history.
One of the author´s main sources of information was Luz y Verdad (Light and Truth), the official body that spread the lodge between 1900 and 1904. It was founded by José Antonio Cabral, an important local mason who later created the Democracia and Nueva Era newspapers.
The Light and Truth weekly was another significant aspect the author analyzed, observing the sponsors´names, social conditions and professions. These items helped figure out their social and intellectual level as well as the activities they developed, as most of these people owned independent enterprises which allowed them to perform other tasks.
“While some of them had nothing to do with the lodge, others were its supporters. At the very beginning, nobody knew what a masonic publication actually was, as it started like a deeply anticlerical general interest newspaper. Later, it was found out that it was the lodge´s official body,” the author informed.
Besides, at the end of the 19th century, there was struggle between clerical power and masonic ideals. The latter supported a lay, secular society and attempted to introduce four important documents which highlighted this principle. It should be pointed out that- by the end of that century- the 1420 law went into force, supporting free, lay and compulsory education; besides, cemeteries had been secularised and registry offices had already been created.
One of the texts deals with a conference that took place in Tandil and was given by Pablo Barrenechea, the great master of Argentina´s Grand Lodge, and Carlos Olivera- a masonic deputy. Both of them were promoting a divorce law, the last lay regulation that had to be passed.
Campos highlighted that forty-five masons welcomed these figures, which is stated in the document. If this number was to be compared with the number of people living in Tandil, we would find out that the local lodge was significant.
One of the three documents deals with international masonic history and suggests how this was going to be at the beginnings of the 20th century. The other is about lovatones- masons´sons brought up by the lodge and who received moral instruction through symbol language. The third document deals with the initiation of two candidates from Tandil who were inquired about Luz del Sud ideology and about a rationalist and scientific ritual that sets out woman and man´s role as well as God´s moral aspects, among other matters.
Luz del Sud Actions
Mauricio Campos stressed that the tasks of the lodge are divided into different stages. The Philanthropic Society foundation, La Caridad, was an antecedent. After the killing of foreigners in Tandil -in 1872 – and the creation of the San Juan asylum in 1880, this organization became a lodge.
In the 1870s and 1880s, masons were strongly involved in the foundation of the main mutual organizations: La Caridad (The Charity), La Sociedad Española in 1873 (The Spanish Society), La Sociedad Italiana in 1877 (The Italian Society) and the French Sociedad Sadi Carnot in 1891 (Sadi Carnot Society). In 1890, the turning point was the magazine foundation: Sociedad de Hermanas de los Pobres, which depended on Luz del Sud.
An interesting discovery was that the constitutive act of the Philanthropic Society La Caridad (The Charity) stated masonic principles in its prologue. Moreover, the Society´s official board in 1871 was made up of members who had a role in Luz del Sud the following year. Some examples are Ramón Santamarina, who was the treasurer in both; Carlos Díaz, Juan María Dhers, and the siblings Arabehety and Manuel Suárez Buyo. Another crucial member in La Caridad was Bernardo Sabatté Laplace. He was there in 1871 and became part of Luz del Sud´s first board ten months later. Besides, he took part in the city council corporation in 1875 and he was also involved in Sadi Carnot Society.
Sabatté Laplace was essential since he had “key roles in masonry in crucial times.” With Luz del Sud creation in 1872, his function was merely operative as he had a political aim: to displace Figueroa, justice of the peace, who represented the Creole conservative group.
After the Tata Dios killing, which could have been encouraged by the conservatives, the lodge aimed at taking over the political power. In 1873, the Grand Lodge in Argentina authorized its operation; however, Light and Truth pointed out in 1903 that Luz del Sud foundation had been in 1874. According to the author, dates discrepancy aims at hiding the initial objective of the lodge since Sabatté Laplace -board member in 1873 and the lodge´s president in 1903- could not be unaware of the foundation day.
The Speaking Stone: The Good Shepherd, his Temple, the Naked Symbol
According to Macionis and Plummer, “ While hunter-gatherer members of societies would think the world was inhabited by spirits, agricultural societies worshipped their ancestors and considered God as their creator. Shepherd societies believed that God interfered directly in the community´s destiny. The metaphor, ‘ God as shepherd of his community or flock’ is shared by Christianity, Judaism and the Islam. These three religions were born in the Middle East as a consequence of religious beliefs of shepherd societies.”
“Different factors were combined, which made me deal with this issue: a previous conference written in 2006, later published under the title 20th Century Masons and Temples and subtitled On Masonic and Christian Mythology. Other works such as Masons and Ecclesia’s Gospel Hidden in Stone; A Rough Study on Architecture, History and Temple Symbolism; Tandil´s Good Shepherd and its relation with The Apocalypse of John; and Secret Societies and Alchemy.”
The extraordinary film The Good Shepherd, directed by Roberrt De Niro- who has a minor role in it- was another factor involved. The movie deals with the CIA origins within the American university lodges during the Second World War and its participation in Bay of Pigs failed invasion in 1961.
(Note: In 1962, Allec Mellor states in her masonic lecture about political connotations, “ Brethren, it´s our duty to admit that communism as such cannot bring up good citizens. An ideology that denies God existence will never be able to set up a free- man nation. When man forgets God, tyrants forge their chains. If we cannot evidence any danger so far, let´s look back to the East, where Light comes from and to Midday in order to better observe the different moments in time. There, the Cuban shadow is risen up, chained with shackles, with its eyes full of tears and begging hands, claiming helplessly, Oh Lord, My God… Can´t anybody help us? What about hope?”
Finally, several reading passages were involved in my decision, though Foucault’s seminar Security, Territory and Population, taught at College de France in 1977-1978 was the most powerful one. He states,
“I believe that the idea of a man-ruling government can be looked for in the East, especially a Pre-Christian East, and then, in the Christian East. And there are two ways of doing this: first, pursuing the idea and organization of a pastoral- like power, and then, being aware of our conscience and soul.”
As regards the conference mentioned, it attempted to explain “ the similarities between 20th century masonry and religion” through ”a rough study to symbolism and ideas underlying masonic and religious (Christian) doctrines” and “ the pursuit of such influences into Tandil´s cultural legacy, like temples, churches, buildings, and public areas.” I introduced in the preliminary notes,
“ This work is just an outline of the ideas presented in the XVII Regional History Congress that took place in Mar del Plata in 2006. It deals with symbolism complexity embedded in masonic philosophy, which increases through the different degrees of symbol interpretation. Temple symbolism underlies a hidden message which implies and explains the link between human beings and Nature, and as such, it reflects the idea of birth, death and regeneration.”
This is the basis of the theory supported by the modern Rosicrucian about the philosophic system,” …as in Nature, everything is constantly born, destroyed and regenerated; Generation, Destruction and Regeneration are the main phases that make up the roots of this doctrine as well as the theoretical development involved in the three symbolic or primitive degrees of universal freemasonry.”
Achieving the Rosicrucian Knight degree is a challenging goal freemasons impose themselves. This degree assumes a jealous and mindful shepherd responsible for leading and illustrating men; for taking out of their way everything that could divide them, and for facilitating, instead, every single thing that may join them fraternally.
The main objective of this work consists of uncovering the introduction, spreading and transformation of the 20th century religious doctrines, influenced by the already mentioned masonic ideas.
Fulcanelli concludes, “this mutus liber (mute o closed book) is the temple- secret Bible made of stone leaves- the trace, the hallmark of the Grand Lay Masterpiece heading the Grand Christian Masterpiece.”
Lux e Tenebris is the emblem of the mentioned Rosicrucian Knight or Sovereign Prince, also called the Black Eagle, the Pelican and Saint Andrew from Scotland, which corresponds to the 18th degree of the Ancient Scottish Rite and Accepted in the 33rd degree. This emblem refers to the struggle between light and darkness, truth and error, and reason and fanatism.
According to the masonic dictionary, the Rosicrucian Knight´s duty is devoted to wisdom´s triumph over ignorance, the highest point of fraternity development and freedom encouragement. It is compulsory to be extremely tolerant towards different religious beliefs; contemplate individuals´ heterogeneity, merits, imperfection and appreciate their victories and virtues.
The Rosicrucian Knight believes that good and evil are a simple consequence of people´s relationship and not the outcome of supernatural entities. He considers science as the world heritage; he tries to extol man to the utmost wisdom and thinks that true intelligence is only reached through experience and reason. Fleeing from darkness and error, he studies Nature, every Science and the Arts, and he is eager to organize the scattered tools and to reconstruct the broken pillars that support the Temple of Reason.
During liturgical practice, the acronym INRI is used, which stands for Igne Natura Renovatur Integra, and means nature is regenerated through fire. The Lutheran temple described in that conference is riddled with Rosicrucian masonic symbolism. In spite of being two different entities, rosicrucian and masonic groups have been connected for a long time -mainly through their symbols and degrees.
I wrote In a chapter devoted to Luther and the secret societies,
“Bertrand Russell claimed in his book Religion and Science that Luther hated flies; he said, `Saint Augustine was unaware of why God created flies. Luther boldly stated that they had been created by Devil to distract him when writing new books.´
Some years later, I learned that the ancient Jewish called Devil Belcebú [Beelzebub], which means Lord of the Flies. The doctrine Luther preached was based on an “open Bible and its free interpretation, preserving only two sacraments: baptism and communion.
Foucault asks, “What is sacramental and baptism power? Telling the sheep to join the flock. And communion power? Feeding the spirit.”
Luther also wore a ring with a cross in the middle of a rose. Some authors attribute the Protestant Reform to the Rosicrucian Order. For example, the minister Valentín Andrea wore a Saint Andrew cross with roses.
Lewis explains, “a kind of Saint Andrew Cross becomes Jesus Christ´s monogram. X is also the Greek letter chi and P is rho. These are the two first letters of Jesus Christ´s Greek name.”
The abbreviation of X and P combined turned to be Jesus Christ´s symbol. The Good Shepherd Sign in Rosicrucian Knight´s masonic chapters consists of crossing arms over the chest, stretching hands with joined fingers and palms on the nipples, and opening eyes to heaven while bowing. This represents reason and immortality. This position can be reflected through the skull and crossed bones.
(Note. This was the emblem used in pirate flags. In the film Skulls and Bones, the Yale´s Lodge that embraces the main characters, turns to be “The Pirates”).
Lavagnini explains, “Thus, two set squares are formed, one on top and one on bottom; their union is indicated through the Greek letter Y and the Latin letter X, X and P union makes up Christ´s monogram.” And he adds, “ X represents two opposite principles- Good and Evil and Light and Darkness- P is the circle which refers to the infinite and the eternal.”
Valentín Andrea developed his ideas in the documents Fama Fraternitatis (1614), Confessio Fratrum (1615) and the Chemical Weddings by Christian Rosenkreutz (1625), which state, “ Quite soon the Universe will go through a general transformation. The ungodly will be thrown and the Equality doctrine will be spread all along the Earth.”
These documents promoted new ideas about free thought, reading and the study of Sacred Scriptures, as well as the end of ignorance and darkness. According to the masonic link expressed in the 18th degree, the most generalized and accepted opinion in ancient Europe stated that this degree is based on the gnostic doctrines of the old and renowned Rosicrucian Brethren´s fraternities. These spread along the main States of the old continent at the beginning of the 17th century and were inspired on the doctrines of the wise, famous alchemist Valentín Andrea.
His theory about the philosophic system- taken by the modern Rosicrucian- states, “As in nature everything is constantly born, destroyed and regenerated, Generation, Destruction and Regeneration are the main phases that make up the roots of this doctrine as well as the theoretical development involved in the three symbolic or primitive degrees of universal freemasonry.”
As regards the masonic dictionary, this is its essence as pure Gnostic doctrine, thus, it is consecrated to mankind emancipation through this doctrine and fraternity.
Lavagnini explains, “ The link between masonry and religion is not as clear as it is in this degree. In the symbolic degrees which come from old and medieval corporations of temple-construction workers, it was prohibited to discuss about political and religious issues. On the other hand, it was necessary to respect and tolerate any other beliefs as well as to make an effort to logically and spiritually understand them through the set square and the compass on the sacred book of tradition- the Bible. ”
As stated in the Catholic Encyclopedia, “the Bible as masonic symbol is to be interpreted as the Nature book or the Reason and Human Nature Code.”
Lavagnini believes that dogmas mask truth; he says, “gnostic doctrines teach the true meaning of philosophic and religious theories covered under allegoric and symbolic veils.”
Jung adds, “By means of them, there is an attempt to initiate the faithful into the essence secrets and end of the universe- in the eternal struggle between good and evil principles and divinity manifestations.”
According to Masonic Cosmogony, instruction entails symbolism, which reflects the stunning nature and which was created by our ancestors to support, study and meditate about truth concealed by appearance. To Romandetti Dasso, masonic symbols are “ a syntax of his ideas, where the idea of a eternal message lies.”
Mackley explains that the symbol “is a sensitive image used to express a hidden but analogous message.” In a classic anthropologic study, Godelier points out that language is a system of symbols related to power. He selects some concepts, “ Men are initiated to speak a secret language and they are also initiated to secrets which are only for women and non- inducted young people. There is also a kind of men´s monopoly of certain knowledge, which means language by code or secret language.” Thus, men/women and the old /the young hierarchy matches clans hierarchy, where some are ritual masters. This is the structure of the political-symbolic hierarchy.” “ Hierarchy exists in power, public authority, symbolic practice and material resources control.”
“Thus, we can observe a coded use of the language or, more precisely, a coded language itself. And why is there a metaphoric use of a part of the lexicon? Because there is a relationship between words and things, which gives power over things. Language helps us find out the hidden essence of things. It is power over things as well as over men through power over things. In the core of this language usage, there is a representation, a theory, and not only a way of speaking but also of thinking, of bringing up problems and interpreting the world.”
“In the important, key moments of men or women’s life, there is learning along complex rituals, myths and secret knowledge. So the young get a feeling of great superiority during the long years of learning, either through songs, speeches or the roots of things, while they also learn the rules of their own behaviour. They are taught about moral and ethics, what a political attitude is and, at the same time, they learn about the hidden roots of things. This takes place through myths about men and stars´ origins, Gods and supernatural beings´ role in their life.”
“It is important to highlight that the initiated young should not speak in front of the elder during ceremonies; they do not have the right to speak. They must listen and absorb society rules.”
“Great revelations take place in a dramatic background on a gestural, symbolic, corporal and nourishing level. Each stage entails a series of new prohibitions on feeding, body posture, way of speaking, walking, and so on. Moreover, a part of the existing interdictions in the preceding stage is removed, which means man´s change. This is the powerful and complex context of power and language relationship.”
“Apart from speech, there are body gestures and taboo, and ways of using the space around ourselves as well as every thing that goes beyond language but that also speaks. The difference is relative when ordinary people are concerned; however, it is absolute when knowledge of rituals and ritual language are involved. History true actors are aware of their use of symbolic means and of the efficient, real and true power they receive through these symbols. To them, symbolic power has a different meaning from ours.”
“Finally, this double- power structure that tries to be restored in people´s interest and to be at service of some; this double structure is older than the State. Humanity future evolution and the end of wars will lead to the blurring of two partly-linked realities: religion and State. This will happen through the disacralization of social relations.”
Other 17th century key figures were the antique and the alchemist Elías Ashmole and the British Rosicrucian from the Real Society. According to Lavagnini, “they created speculative masonry which incorporated and interpreted symbolically masons´ tools for all those who have eyes to see and ears to understand the dumb geometric and philosophic language of symbolism. The latter leans on archetypal ideas which have helped to create, rule, develop and evolve the world according to the laws that expressed these divine ideas.” Its evolution will originate the Grand Lodge in London in 1717.
Light and Truth explains about masonic objectives, “the gradual increase of supporters and the decrease of professional artisans led to the decline of these societies and lodges, surviving only four of them in London at the beginning of the 17th century. Thus, there was a conference in this society, among thirteen Lords and the following masters: Anderson, the clergyman; Payne, the archaeologist; Desaguliers, the physician,and some other wise men. This meeting ended up in the setting of the Grand Lodge under a Grand Master´s control with the unique objective of encouraging moral development. This Grand Master was chosen In Saint John´s Day -1717- and immediately after the clergyman mentioned. Anderson wrote a new constitution- dated to 1723- according to this association´s aims and considering old costumes and professional prescriptions of the mason´s trade.” It states,
“The Free Mason is forced to obey moral law and if he understands it and knows its true meaning, he will never be an atheist or a profane man of angry life. We consider reasonable and convenient to force each Free Mason to practise that religion that gives rise to harmony. That means that each Free Mason should be good, faithful, sensible and honourable so that friendship can be struck up, even when they are away from each other. These are the most beautiful and perfect principles which lie behind every moral rule now and then, and they must always remain as the main concern of Universal Masonry.”
According to Albert Pike, an American masonry reformer in the 19th century, “There is a merely formal atheism which implies God rejection in the terms but not in reality. Clearly, there is a plan and an aim where order, beauty and harmony take place, but this is Nature´s plan and aim. In such cases, God absolute rejection is only formal, not real. God´s qualities are accepted and stated and He is called Nature instead of God.”
As it is stated in 20th Century Masons and Temples, the Real Arch masonic ritual is founded on the keystone of a vault, which is supposed to have come from Solomon´s Temple´s main arch and the discovery of the hidden treasure which taught ancient law principles. There, it was found a stone which had Jehovah carved on it. (Notice that the term JEHOVAH, which etymologically means to be (I am), implies God´s qualities: it expresses the active or masculine principle, the passive or feminine one and the combination of both sexes- which means that God is hermaphrodite- and unique principle of Man Universal Creation).
In the angled stone arch, the Delta is carved with God´s name. According to the liturgy, Delta represents UGA -Universe Great Architect or Supreme Creator, and the square marble stone on which it was carved in the ninth vault was Nature´s emblem. Its four sides represent the four seasons, the four cardinal points, the four primitive elements. It is Nature´s Great Book, whose pages have that name we look for, stamped on them. The ritual celebrates the discovery of God´s written name. To the Real Arch masons, “the word, Name or Verb means: that who eternally exists on his own; that is, the Supreme Being who has been, is and will be.”
The works aim to “discuss about how many propositions are oriented to propaganda in order to get religious freedom and perfection in population´s instruction. This is to be done through a detailed test about our knowledge of the First Cause origins and the modification of an idealist teaching that meets Justice and progress needs.”
From a different view, in a 1962 speech on modern bonds between religion and masonry, Allec Mellor claims “Operative or speculative masonry, either being into men´s heart or job, is and has always been an extremely religious way of envisaging life, having as first Pillar God´s fatherhood and, as second, human fraternity. “ (Note: this is not a metaphor, it refers to the two pillars found in the J and B Lodge entrance).
Mackley´s 19th landmark involves this faith profession in God´s existence, and the 20th – the corollary- is concerned with resurrection beginnings to a future life. The Old Duties in 1721, highlights -in its first article- God and Religion concerns. Previous regulations even led to Holy Church faithfulness, which involved cathedrals or temples builders.
“My Brethren, masonry has not been created to meet any material end but to join men´s hearts as our almighty God´s sons, being brothers to each other. We have not become masons- either you or me- to be wealthy or famous but to build our own soul´s Temple and the Fraternity Temple we share.
It is absolutely true that masonry has never aimed at being a religion; however, numberless Brethren have claimed that Masonry is the religion they need. It may be enough to meet their current needs, but what happens then to that immortal soul– one of the essential teachings of our Order? What does Salvation turn into? And prayer? And sins absolution? And do not tell me it´s not necessary. Human race history is a continuous sin and degradation history. Will you find a father or confessor in the venerable master of our Lodge? Do you sacrifice upon the Masonry altar? Do you worship in spirit and reality…? Religion and Fraternity go together. Our brotherhood is not an organized religion though it is religious; and if we consider its precepts, we get closer to the religion we have chosen.
Masonry is the Church or Synagogue´s server we have chosen. I am sure you cannot ignore the growing gap in some places between Church and Fraternity. Personally, as cult´s minister or mason in the ministry core, this has not been something easy to deal with. I have even been able to discern some dose of spirit narrowness, even fanatism, among certain clergy members. In spite of this, I must admit we can also be blamed for Fraternity. In fact, we are not beyond censorship.
My Brethren, I tell thee in the name of everything good or saint, that you wouldn´t be able to truly practise our Masonry if you turned your back to Church. Sometimes you are astonished by not being so welcomed by the priest of our local church during the services. So, let´s honour ourselves and contemplate the situation impartially. You will naturally understand that this does not always happen, but it does in a fair number of cases to justify the concern. For instance, we have a reduced number of masons, who represent pretty badly the Lodge- 15-20 out of 400- 600 approximately. They attend services in group as Pharisees -to be seen by men instead of worshipping God. They pretend to defend Faith, true and moral law, with the idea of being praised and acclaimed by the priest. This may be the only time all along the year when you will see this kind of figures in church. This is a serious requirement against Fraternity, but it necessary to have a say here.”
According to the American sociologist Vance Packart, “Fraternal orders were at their height around 1920-1930, when most American adult men belonged ,at least, to one of them. Their secrets, rituals and clothing may currently seem to be somehow juvenile; however, these orders greatly contributed to democracy. As the Roman Catholic Church, they completely covered the American social order.”
Then, he explains that the situation changed abruptly towards 1960. “ It seems that our sociability rules, either informal or organized, are characterized by being limited to classes and by avoiding or excluding those who might be from a lower or different social status. The example of our main national hero, Abraham Lincoln, who dealt with all kind of people and enjoyed making fun of the conceited, does not appeal to a great part of our population.”
Finally, he quotes, “Protestant churches tend to be class churches, whose members come from a class group.”
( Dialogue between the mafia chief driven out from Cuba and the CIA officer.)
Mafioso: We, the Italian, have our families and the Church; the Irish have their homeland; the Jewish their tradition; even the Negroes have their music. And you, what do you have?
Officer: The United States of America. The rest of you are just visitors.
When recruiting staff for the intelligence community, Robert De Niro explains to the interviewee: “neither Jewish nor negroes, and only a few Catholics.”
The sense of exclusion is present all along the film. An example of this is the recurrent phrase, “ there is a strange in our house.” The masons´eagle and the CIA will watch, being a symbol of both institutions.
De Niro adds, “ So much power in the hands of a few worries me. It is always convenient to create real or fictitious enemies for some people; I imagine it as the country´s eyes and ears. I do not want it to be its soul; I am weak: I believe in a fair God. It seems I am always wrong by favouring democracy.”
Claude Giraud was interviewed about secrecy involved in the institutions, “ Can we state that The United States are made up of the secret of a religious practice?”
“We definetely can. The United States are characterized by having a considerable group of religious institutions as well as secrecy- manipulation institutions. As churches were the most important State- nation institutions, there is a secrecy religious dimension which implies authority submission- obedience to something superior impossible to understand.”
“It can also be said that secrecy causes constant suspicion…”
“Absolutely. I think this is one of the weakest points of using secrecy systematically… I believe secrecy is mainly interesting for intellectuals and people who bring into question political authority, but not for everybody.”
“And secrecy can also be used as a means of controlling society.”
“Absolutely. An amazing means of social control. I know that here, in Argentina, there are not as many sects as in The United States and Europe. And when we look into sectarian organizations or those that aim to prevent individuals from leaving them, secrecy is a completely notorious means of social control. Every action or thought is controlled by that idea of a common secret.” (Note: A label on the door of a CIA agent´s office stated, “ Dead End.”)
“Is the secret spilt and complicity or fraternity gone?”
“Absolutely. But among masons, secrets are not to be kept. Masonry secrecy consists of making people disclose it. Every secret implies search and the pursuit of a secret other than search. But actually, the only true secret is initiation. It is a subtle game that consists of displacing the secret content, which is in the method. The method itself entails a social bond and solidarity. But there is no object for secrecy. And even the mafia needs secrets to remain alive. It is a very rational organization that makes each of its members experience a social -authority relationship extremely violent. Within this context, secrecy may be life or death. The outcome might not be the same for everybody if we consider the circumstances each individual is going through, and the extent to which secrecy becomes an essential practice. It is an institutionalization of the secret.”
“Secrecy is a social practice that entails disclosure, change or selection when data are transferred. It is a silenced word, information which cannot be or does not want to be revealed by no means. To protect this information, lie and separation are imposed. Secrecy disapproval comes from this use of the lie, the inability of secret confession and error admission.”
These are some interesting aspects taken from the film The Good Shepherd, which somehow reflect what has been said. The individual initiated in the Lodge must reveal a secret to prove his loyalty. Curiously, another character fulfills the role of Secrets and Requests Director.
José María Caro quotes, “Weishaupt, Enlightment head and model used by the Yale Lodges, provided excellent rules so that the instructors could perform their jobs successfully.” He suggests studying and spying on the initiated.
According to Foucault, “Shepherds have a teaching role in their community. It is necessary that instruction is carried out through observation, vigilance and constant guidance over the flock´s complete and integral behaviour. Shepherds do not have to constraint their teaching to truth; conscience should guide them.”
In the constant feasts of the Lodge, first the brethren and then God is mentioned, emphasizing fraternity. Masonry Rosicrucian Knights are also used to celebrating the Mystic Dinner. The stave or perpendicular star symbol can be seen twice: outside the CIA building and into the main character´s bedroom, whose house- at the front- shows the masonic delta and the two pillars. The two pillars represent the two principles or complementary opposites: good and evil; light and darkness; fire and water; male and female, and so on.
According to José María Caro, “The triangle represents the Universe Grand Architect or masonic trinity; that is, nature and its three kingdoms: mineral, vegetal and animal. The word God begins with the letter G in many languages, which means regeneration. To Ragon, this trill God has three mysteries that symbolize the triangle three sides: 1) Everything is made up by generation. 2) Destruction follows regeneration in all its works. 3) Regeneration follows destruction.” The Smart Star, symbol of the Supreme Grand Master or modern philosophy, or masonic dogma means that the masonic order purifies and illuminates with philosophy lights the belief in divinity.” The one-dollar note is used and its symbolism is explicit.
Mc Nulty quotes, “ The United States Great Seal that can be seen in one-dollar notes, shows many principles used by freemasons. At the top of the obverse (on the right) there is Glory- a heraldic representation of deity, and below it there is the eagle, a symbol of spirit. In this first deity degree, there is the two- opposites symbol: laurel and peace and war arrows. The eagle has the shape of the nation represented by its weapons. At the seal back (on the left), it can be read that this nation, which arises from a wide and diverse basis (the pyramid) and heads to the unique divine centre (the eye) that is its source, will be a New Secular Order.” Masonry aims at building or restoring a temple.
Monsignor Jose María Carol wonders, “which is this temple?” “Nature´s temple, where masonic freedom, equality and fraternity should reign; where truth, virtues and masonry moral rules can be learned.” Masonry also makes use of tack and military expressions in its symbols and rites; it deals with war against intolerance, and fanatism and ignorance. It is, then, a militia- an army which disciplines and supplies itself with weapons against the enemy. Finally, masonry aims to set up a universal, new religion which has everything in terms of rites and ceremonies of a religious cult. It is also a religion.”
The main character knocks at the Lodge´s door three times, and three are also the bells that peal and inform on the traitor´s spot, which reveals the secret. The three knocks mean: demand and it will be given ( light); look for and you will find (the truth); knock and it will be opened (the temple´s door). Thirty-three is the Rosicrucian Knight´s symbolic age in masonry; it is the prime of man´s life when he is mature enough to devote himself to philosophic studies. It implies the union of both, the material and spiritual nature.
The character travels to England in the middle of the Second World War to learn about the Art of the Obscure, that is, espionage. Good at his work, the Soviets call him “Mother”, while the Lodges´ members are known as the “Widow´s sons”- and his enemies call him- at a church in ruins- “made of stone.” The mason apprentice´s shapeless stone, which must be scabbled, learns “ the different information and disinformation usages- and how this use means power.”
Another character says, “A job that makes us turn back to see who is watching on us. “His mentor explains, “ Everything that looks clear is blurred. Everything blurred is clear. Caught by reflection, he should learn when truth masks a lie, dealing with it efficiently and dispassionately.”
It even seems to be a passage inspired in Corinthian 13, 1-13, “ When I was a child, I spoke like a child, appreciated things as a child and reasoned like a child. When I became a man, these childish qualities disappeared. Now, it seems we see things through a mirror, blurred, but when everything is gone, we will see face to face. Now, I know things imperfectly; when everything is gone, I will learn how I was known. Currently, these three virtues remain alive: faith, hope and charity, but the best is the latter.”
To Foucault, charity is the Good Shepherd´s main feature. The three pillars which support the Rosicrucian Knight as regards his liturgy are: charity, hope and faith, distinguishing between fanatism and reason, and shrewdness that deceives and truth that teaches.
It can be read in the biblical passage of the CIA building, “Truth will free us.” In absolute darkness, the old spy says to the agent before being murdered due to failure, “ As long as you can and continue believing, get out of this.” A last image corresponds to its crook sinking into water. Isn´t it the patriarch scepter- the villages leaders and guides, the Good Shepherd´s crook, symbol of surveillance and of the right to exert it? Return to water to be reborn through baptism.
John´s gospel states, “how can man be born being old? Is he able to get into his mother´s womb and be reborn? Actually, I can tell you that unless man is born from water and the spirit, he cannot get into God´s kingdom.”
The shepherd´s authority is shown when he takes the sheep out of the flock, as -due to illness or fuss- the former may contaminate the whole group. Foucault states, “ so, religious power is pastoral power.”
Another symbolism of regeneration can be seen at the end of the movie, when the main character uses fire to destroy a letter written by his father before committing suicide. This letter hides a terrible secret. Masons practise double baptism- through water and fire, though the issue will be too extensive. Some other metaphores take place, too, like that of the locust plague that ruins the unreliable dictator´s coffee plantations. Biblically, it means an invasion from the enemy.
The passage 10, 3-13 from the exodus states, “ Tomorrow I will cover your lands with locust, which will spread all over the Earth face and will devour everything…” and then, “ it will invade your home and your servants´ homes…” It is not necessary to say that after spreading the plague, the agency encourages a State strike in that country. According to the exodus, when Moses introduces himself to the Pharaoh and informs him on the plagues, he does it with his crook in his hands- being the locust the eighth plague.
It is noteworthy that the plant of the Good Shepherd´s temple- studied in my previous work- is an octagon, which symbolizes balance and gives the idea of completion. It is expressed through the double cross and the squares union. To Lewis, “ it represents harmony to one another.” The Rosicrucian Knights call this geometric figure ogdoada tétrada, which means unity. The ending is notorious as it sums up numerous symbolisms.
The new CIA´s Chief tells the main character, “ I need someone who I can trust; after all, we are still brothers. This building will not be put up without you. You are the CIA´s soul and life; who knows, but maybe you have one of my secrets into the safe box. I remember once a senator enquired about the fact that when we referred to the CIA in English, we never used the article the in front of it.”
“And I asked him, do you use the preposition of in front of God?”
Foucault states, “Something frequently found in the Mediterranean East is the figure of the shepherd as men´s king, God or chief and the figure of man as part of the flock. It can be observed in Egypt, Assyria and the Mesopotamia – mainly among the Hebrews,”. (Note: liturgy, ceremonies and masonic rituals have their roots in the Jewish-Christian tradition).
“In Egypt, as well as in Assyrian and Babylonian monarchies, the king is effectively appointed as men´s shepherd in a ritual ceremony. When receiving the crown, the pharaoh obtains the shepherd´s insignia. A crook lies on his hands and he is named men´s shepherd. The pastoral relationship is essentially the relationship between God and men. It is a religious-like power and its principles, foundation and perfection lie on the power of God over his community.”
“The Good shepherd heads towards the right direction. The shepherd heads towards salvation, prescribes the law and teaches the truth. The aim of the pastoral power is ,undoubtedly, the flock´s salvation. In this sense, we can state that we are not that far from what was traditionally considered as the sovereign´s objective; that is, the homeland salvation- which must be the supreme lex of power exercise.” (Note: Foucault quotes “According to the etymology traditionally accepted by the pythagoreans, nomos- law- comes from nomeus- shepherd.)
“Pastoral power is initially shown by its jealousy, devotion and indefinite application.” “The shepherd is the one who watches. He watches over evil and mainly over the misfortunes that may arise. He will also watch over the flock and will prevent misfortune from threatening his animals. He will watch over the good fortune of each flock´s member. The idea of sacrifice lies here, the shepherd is concerned about others and never about himself.” (Note: a Rosicrucian mason symbol is the pelican that tears its chest to feed its offspring. It symbolizes masons´charity towards his fellows in the same way the earth opens its entrails to feed its population. It symbolizes sacrifice and it was adopted as symbol of Jesus Christ shedding his blood across the Church and Humanity.)
Foucault continues, “ the shepherd leads the flock, but he is able to do it properly as long as any of the sheep runs away… the shepherd must keep a close eye on everybody and on each of them in particular. This will be the great concern for power techniques in the Christian pastorship and for the modern power techniques as they are stipulated in population´s technologies… The idea of pastoral power was introduced in the occidental world through the Christian Church. The Church turned all the issues concerning pastoral power into precise mechanisms and definite institutions. Moreover, it was the church that actually organized a specific and autonomous pastoral power, introducing its rules into the Roman Empire and organizing in its heart, a type of power which- I think- no other civilization could have known. This kind of power so typical of the West, and so unique all along the history of civilizations was born in the sheepfold- in politics related o flock matters.”
Then, he explains “… A process by which a religion or religious community became a Church; that is, an institution tending to rule men in their daily life, pretending to lead them to eternal life in the other world, ranging from a city or state single group to all the humanity. A religion that aims to manipulate men´s daily real life, on the pretext of the whole mankind´s salvation: this is Church and there is no other example in societies´ history. In brief, I believe that with this Church institutionalization, a unique power device was created, which did not stop from developing during fifteen centuries- since the 2nd or 3rd to the 18th Century. That pastoral power completely linked to Church organization, Christian religion as well as the Christian Church has undoubtedly gone through lots of changes all along these fifteen centuries of history. It cannot be denied that it was displaced, dislocated, changed and integrated to several types, but it was never truly abolished. And when I point out the 18th century as the end of the pastoral era, I may be making a mistake, as the typology, organization, and way of working of the pastoral power is still among us.”
(Note: It is not thoughtless to suggest that this pastoral power exercise- that Foucault names- was transferred to the Lodges and to other secret societies. An example may be the Rosicrucian Order, whose modern origins date from the beginnings of the 17th century and the first manifesto can be ascribed to the Lutheran minister Valentín Andrea. His influence was crucial in the Royal Society of London- an institution whose members had an influence on the creation of modern and speculative Masonry officially dating from the beginnings of the 18th century in 1717. As I have already mentioned, some authors even attribute the Protestant Reformation to the Rosicrucian Order.)
Foucault comments that the Reformation and Counter- Reformation are great revolts “ about the right to be ruled, how to be ruled and who will rule; they had a determined connection to a great pastoral power reorganization.” “Pastorship in Christianity created the art of conducting, leading, channelling, guiding, handling, manipulating, following and moving men; the art of being in charge of them collectively and individually all along their life and in every moment of their existence.” “ The modern State is born when ruling becomes a calculated and meditated political practice. To me, the Christian pastoral is the background of this process. On one hand, there is a wide gap between the Hebrew issue of the shepherd and the Christian pastoral. On the other hand, there will be another important gap among government, individuals and communities´ pastoral direction and the development of the ruling arts- the specification of a political intervention field since the 16th and 17th centuries.” “ Between the Church pastoral power and the political power, there will definitely be a series of interferences, support and relief… a succession of conflicts… so that their crossing over will be a historical reality across Occident.” It is still unknown where exactly they intertwined and confused even more. According to Foucault, this turning point began in the 18th century, when modern Masonry was officially born- the bribest Hidden Society of those times where it was “purportedly” banned to talk or interfere in political and religious affairs.
To conclude, Christian Pastorship will set up an individual, exhaustive, complete and permanent obedience relationship.” “Pastorship is absolutely innovative as it introduces a structure and technique of power, research and self-evaluation as well as others´. Through it, a hidden internal truth and a hidden truth of the soul will be used to exert pastoral power and obedience; to ensure an entire obedience relationship and the economy of merits and demerits.” (Note: This can be compared to the so-called salary increase for the Lodge´s members.) ”These new links between merits and demerits, absolute obedience and hidden truths make up Christianity essence, originality and specificity.” 2007/2008
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