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Switch to Forum Live View More Freemasonry crap on Discovery
5 years ago  ::  Oct 24, 2009 - 10:00PM #1
moonsongsinger
Posts: 70

So there are commmercials about some new Discovery channel show harping on about the pentacle in Freemasonry. In one part of the commercial, the "expert" being interviewed mentions some thing about Freemasonry 'bordering on paganism, maybe even Satanism'.


 


Is there someone we should contact about this ridiculous insult? Like either of these groups need MORE bad PR?


 


Gah.

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5 years ago  ::  Oct 25, 2009 - 5:20PM #2
CreakyHedgewitch
Posts: 1,244

Moonsongsinger, Would you mind explaining why you see this as an insult?


Granted networks do tend to seek out academic type experts for such programming and with so many varying definitions and UPG at work, these experts do come across as narrow and often unaware of such complexity. Or they got edited into sound bites by the production/director of the program. 


However the symbolism of Freemasonry has influenced modern Paganism as well as being resourced during the formation of the Religion of Wicca in the early 20th century as well.. Or the expert might simply be referencing the valid definition of paganism of anything not included within Abrahamic faiths. The downward pointing pentagram is also used as a symbol within Satanism though the meanings attributed to it are not valid outside of that framework.


In a Western perspective, it would be hard not to mention Freemasonry, Satanism or even Paganism in discussing the pentacle (often confused with the pentagram). However, no belief system or faith owns or has a copyright on either the pentacle or pentagram. The five pointed star, (pentacle if engraved, pentagram if drawn within a circle) has a long and complex history through many cultures, within which it symbolised different things. Gardner who conceived the Religion of Wicca (the most widely known modern Pagan religion) borrowed the pentagram from the Freemasonry's Blazing Star, which stands for light and the mystic center of their own philosophy or 'theology'. Within Wicca, the pentagram (either upward and downward) may be related to different degrees of initiation as well as symbolising the Gods in various patterns. The modern Paganism Movement, which has been much influenced by Wicca, has adapted the pentagram and pentacle to differing symbolic meanings. The Masons as befitting a European occult or secret society borrowed the symbol from the Pythagoreans who used it a pentagram for recognition or Hugieia, which is usually translated as health. Pythagoras is believed to have traveled through Egypt in the 6th century BCE. Within modern Paganism, one finds sources stating that Egypt is the origin of the pentacle and attributing to the worship of Kore, a Greek not an Egyptian goddess although Ptolomic rule may be a factor in that crossover. It is far more likely that the pentacle being a commonly found symbol throughout this region (demonstrated by its common use on amulets) had various meanings depending on where you were. If it came from anywhere originally into Egypt, this might have been due to the Sumerians. Based on various interpretations about the Sumerians, the five-pointed star apparently symbolised the Heavenly Quarter and the four directions (corresponding to Jupiter, Mercury, Mars and Saturn) with the fifth being above or Venus or the Queen of Heaven. Continuing back in the West, the pentacle appears in the scriptures of the Hebrews, representing the first five books of the Torah and one of the seven names of God. Early Christians – who were originally a sect of Judaism - used to wear pentacle pendants although within this new faith, each point symbolised instead the five wounds of Christ. Arthurian myth placed the pentacle on the shield of Sir Gawain for that reason. In medieval times and yes even to this day, pentagrams may be considered Christian emblems of the microcosm in illustrations and carved into cathedrals. Remember Leonardo De Vinci’s famous man within the pentagram? Early and medieval Christians even wore the pentacle or pentagram as an amulet of Christ at various periods of that faith's history. The Muslims, the third Abrahamic faith consider the pentagram to mean marriage and the five senses. Outside of and predating the West, the Chinese considered the pentagram as the origin of the Chinese ideogram jen, meaning man. To the Hindu, (perhaps the world’s oldest existing religion), the latter is the symbol for Shiva the Transformer.


So this expert may be simply speaking to whatever he or she knows about the pentacle and the historical frameworks in which it might fit. I still remain confused however as to why a mention of paganism and Satanism in reference to Freemasonry might be considered an insult. Your phrasing suggests that you might consider Freemasonry to be the cause for bad PR?


C.H.

No one cares how much you know until they know how much you care.
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5 years ago  ::  Oct 26, 2009 - 12:34AM #3
moonsongsinger
Posts: 70

Woah. I don't mean that the connection with Freemasonry is insulting. Far from it. I definitely recognize the contributions of such fraternal organizations to modern neo-pagan symbolism. It was simply the tone of voice used by said "expert". He was implying that the relation of Freemasonry to his definition of paganism/satanism was a negative thing.

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5 years ago  ::  Oct 26, 2009 - 7:49AM #4
CreakyHedgewitch
Posts: 1,244

Thank you for clarifying.


Other than writing to the network to suggest that they source experts who are less personally prejudiced, I doubt there is anything constructive that may be done about an individual's attitude towards paganism. The latter means different things to different people and like the pentacle, no one had a copyright on what paganism should mean.


C.H.


 

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