Freemasonry and Judaism - Leon de Poncins

What Freemasonry Really is

We have seen what Freemasonry is in appearance. Moreover we have seen its revolutionary part in the world. Enlightened by the lesson of the facts and by the masonic documents which we have published we can consequently set forth what masonry really is.

In appearance it is a secret society, philanthropic and humanitarian. In contradiction with this, we have demonstrated the revolutionary work of Freemasonry in the world.

We have still to explain the organization of Freemasonry and to summarize what Freemasonry really is; its origin, aim, methods of procedure, real organization and its directing influences.

Organization of Freemasonry

I. The origin of Freemasonry.

Its origin is not definite: it has been connected by some writers with older secret societies as far back as the kabbalist Jews of Egypt.

It is only known to exist with certainty in its present form from 1717, which is the date of Anderson's constitutions, upon which are based all masonic constitutions.

II. Aim of Freemasonry.

The aim of Freemasonry is to change the present civilization, which is essentially Christian, to set in its place a masonic world based on atheist rationalism. The aim of Freemasonry has never varied in spite of apparent contradictions in time and place, but it is so vast that it only advances by progressive stages. Each masonic section accomplishes its own part, which is different and even in appearance contradictory according to the times, circumstances, countries and various masonic groups.

"Let us say at the beginning that it would be a mistake to believe that all Freemasons know explicitly the work in which they are collaborating. This knowledge is not given completely even to the initiates of the high degrees, even to those of the inner lodges. Each one, or rather each group, does the work assigned to them in the appointed place among princes and clergy, politicians and civil servants, journalists and teachers, magistrates and officers and among the masses. But while accomplishing the task imposed on them the individual and the group remain ignorant of the place which the particular work in which they are engaged occupies in the general scheme, for they do not see the entire plan.

Thus it was that until the World War Freemasonry was in appearance religious and respectful of established order in certain countries of central Europe. This for two reasons: It would not have been tolerated if it had been openly subversive. Not being able to overthrow the Christian world at a single blow, masonry proceeds by degrees, the first consisting in allying itself with Protestant countries against the Catholic nations which are stronger thanks to the unity of Roman direction. It is already beginning to turn against its former allies in certain countries.

Furthermore the work of duplicity is double: while certain masonic lodges are apparently conservative and respect the established order, behind this camouflage the inner lodges work secretly for the propagation and triumph of revolutionary ideas. It was thus in France at the eve of the revolution in 1789, in central Europe before the 1918 revolution.

Present civilization is based on Christian principles and so the deeper meaning of the struggle is religious. It is a conflict between God and man lead by reason alone.

M. Aulard professor of the history of the revolution at the Sorbonne has said:

"It is absurd to continue to say: we do not want to destroy religion, when we are obliged to admit moreover that this destruction is indispensable in order to found rationally the new political and social city. Let us then say no longer: we do not want to destroy religion, let us say on the contrary: we wish to destroy religion in order to establish the new city in its place."

At the international masonic congress held in Paris to celebrate the centenary of the French revolution, the Freemason Francolin orator of the Grand Orient spoke thus:

"The day will come when among the peoples who have not had a 18th century nor a 1789, monarchies and religions will collapse. That day is not far off, and we are expecting it . . . that day will bring about the masonic universal fraternity of peoples, the ideal which we set up for ourselves. It is our business to hasten its coming."

It may then be concluded from this that Freemasonry and the revolutionary movements have a definite destructive programme, for the realization of which they are straining by every means, not without success, but that their programme of reconstruction is vague and doomed to utter failure.

III. — The method of procedure of Freemasonry.

The great task of Freemasonry is to spread ideas sometimes noble and beautiful in appearance but in reality destructive, of which the prototype is the famous motto: Liberty, equality, fraternity.

Masonry a vast organism of propaganda acts by slow suggestion, spreading the revolutionary ferment in an insidious manner. The heads sow it among the inner lodges, these transmit it to the lower lodges whence it penetrates into the affiliated institutions and into the press, which takes in hand the public.

Tirelessly and during the necessary number of years, the suggestion which is more hidden and imperceptible than an order would be, works upon public opinion and fashions it to wish for the reforms from which nations die.

In 1789 and 1848, Freemasonry in its momentary command of power, failed in its supreme endeavour. Taught by these experiences, its progress has become slower and surer. When once the revolutionary preparation is obtained and judged sufficient, masonry leaves the field to the militant organizations, Carbonari, Bolshevists, or other open or secret societies, and retires into shadows in the background. There it is not compromised; in case of check it seems to have remained apart and is all the better able to continue or take up again its work, like a gnawing worm obscure and destroying.

Before everything a secret society, masonry never works in the full light of day. Everyone knows of its existence, its meeting places and of many of its adepts, but one is ignorant of its real aims, its real means, its real leaders. The immense majority of masons themselves are in that position. They are only the blind machinery of the sect which they serve from ambition (politicians or journalists) from self—interest (businessmen, actors), from fanatical conviction (blind and sincere idealists), or from fear. Many honest masons are so blind that they would be stupefied if they knew for what they are being used. It is secrecy which is the condition of success and masonry holds to it above and before everything, being in this respect wonderfully organized.

IV. The Hidden Masonic Organization.

As far as can be judged, it is double; the administrative organization already described and the hidden organization which is unknown to the great majority of its adepts, everything being done with a view to maintaining secrecy.

Let us recall that when a mason is appointed to a higher degree;

  1. His appointment is final;
  2. He is chosen by the superior group which calls upon him to join it, and is not elected by the suffrages of his equals;
  3. His former lodge companions often remain ignorant of his new dignity, although he continues to mix with them officially.

These three conditions give the solution of this problem which is apparently incomprehensible — that of an invisible power, invisibly transmitting its will and exercising invisibly a dominating influence on French politics.

This water—tight compartment system of degrees makes Freemasonry a superposition of secret societies in which each degree knows of the existence and actions of its own group and of those below it, but is ignorant of all that is going on and being decided in the group immediately above it.

A mason is only chosen after having been watched for a long time and judged worthy of elevation: it is not the levelling principle of universal suffrage which operates but the autocratic principle of absolute power. As one advances in the masonic hierarchy the number of high degrees diminishes and thus masonry forms a pyramid of three main stages.

At the base is blue or St John's masonry, a sort of depot where those who will form the higher masonry are examined and chosen, and where they undergo the indispensable masonic moulding; they also form the necessary contacts with the outer world for the diffusion of masonic ideas.

Above this is the masonry of the high degrees, which, in spite of its name, is only a subordinate masonry, an indispensable channel to reach the high international Freemasonry with probably a small leading inner circle.

It can now be understood how the hidden power is able to transmit its will invisibly in the whole pyramid of masonic workshops. Indeed if two or three members of a superior group, having agreed upon themselves, take part in a meeting of a subordinate group they can easily get their suggestions adopted since their entente is unknown; according to need they will take the necessary time.

It is for this reason that the will is usually transmitted by means of suggestion rather than command, for the latter would risk the discovery and compromising of the immediately superior authority and thereby of the supreme direction.

It is only when the hidden authority believes itself strong enough to be immovable that it gives more definite orders through the medium of Freemasonry as is the case in France today.

This superposition of secret societies also explains the extraordinary manner in which secrecy is maintained. The hidden power has succeeded in impressing masonic brains with a veritable cult of secrecy. This discipline is imposed with absolute rigour from the very first entrance in Freemasonry. It is maintained and renewed at each move upwards. It is recalled to mind again and again although the great majority of masons have no secret to betray. A special state of mind is thus created which explains why those masons who, after long years, reach the really high degrees never betray the order.

For the rest, we know little of high masonry. The Grand Orient and the Grand Lodge of France are lodges of the 1st 2nd and 3rd degree. Above this visible masonry there is another leading from the 4th to the 14th decree, of which we have the ritual but hardly know anything. We do not know where their meetings take place, how their lodges are named, nor their aims, philosophy and above all we do not know their work. It seems that a new cut is made between the 16th and 17th Degree and that from the latter begins the higher masonry which reaches the 32nd degree. It is there in all probability that the higher direction is found and international connection maintained. From the 33rd degree we begin once more to know something of what happens. These are the supreme councils whose importance may be more apparent than real.

Outside of Freemasonry proper there are many irregular masonries such as the Illuminati of Weishaupt, the rite of Memphis and of Misraim; the ordo Templi orient is directed by Aleister Crowley successor of Theodor Keuss. Generally the degrees are priced and can be purchased. There is the universal order of the Bnai—Brith. There are great associations which are powerful in wealth and influence such as the Rosicrucians of California. There is the theosophy, linked with masonry, of Mrs. Besant who works with the Grand Orient. The adepts of all these societies are often "illumines", followers of the occult, ill balanced minds, but behind these fools there are people to be taken seriously, such as Rudolph Steiner, whose anthroposophical society is remarkably organized, a mason of considerable worth and much superior to the vulgar anti—clerical of the lower lodges. There are little known sects such as the Ancient Catharres (round Albi and Reziers) connected with the gnostic Catholic church with its shockingly cynical ritual [In many occult sects phallic workship is in honour].

In a word there is an extraordinary crop of societies more or less secret and more or less masonic of whose existence the public is generally totally ignorant, but whose importance is sometimes very real. They all work more or loss in the same general direction and their main points have been thus summarized in a book called the Nameless Order as corresponding to the six points of the kabbalistic star :

1. Religious. — By philosophy or mysticism or empiric science to undermine and discredit all Christian creed.

2. Ethical. — To corrupt morality of northern races with oriental codes — weaken marriage bonds — destroy family life; abolish inheritance, even heritable names.

3. Aesthetic. — Cult of the ugly and aberrant in art. literature, music and drama — modernism — crude orientalism — degeneracy.

4. Sociological. — Abolition of aristocracy — creation of plutocracy money standard — by vulgar display, extravagance, corruption, to create revolt in proletarian minds, hence class—war.

5. Industrial and financial — Having destroyed ideals of craftsmanship and pride in handicraft, set up golden serpent of profit. Standardisation of cheap and shoddy — centralization — cartel and trust leading to abolition of private ownership and to state monopoly.

6. Political — To kill patriotism and pride of race: in name of progress and evolution set up internationalism as ideal of human brotherhood. Thus undermine national unity, weaken all governments and so prepare way for their super—government which shall rule the world.