An Angle of 60 Degrees? Why?
Few Masons have any definite idea as to why the compasses are opened upon the Volume of the Sacred Law at an angle of 60 degrees.
The explanation may be found in the fact that the equilateral triangle has always been sacred. The sum of all angles of any triangle is equal to two right angles or 180 degrees.
Each of the equal angles of any equilateral triangle is equal to one-third of two right angles (180 divided by 3, which is 60 degrees)’
The compasses thus set at 60 degrees allude to the equilateral triangle and, if the two points were united by a straight line, would form an equilateral triangle.
Our ancient Brethren placed the equilateral triangle itself on the altar.
The compasses opened at 60 degrees have been substituted.
Furthermore, if a circle of any size be drawn, a chord of 60 degrees of that circle will be equal to its radius, and the compasses so set will divide the circle into six equal parts. The points thus made, with the one in the centre, constitute the mystic number 7.
The six external points, if joined by six straight lines, will form the hexagon within the circle, one of the perfect figures. Or, if we unite these six points in another way, we have union with the point within the circle.
This was the most sacred emblem of Pythagoras, known in all ages as the Seal of Solomon by which he bound fast the genii that rebelled against God
If the whole seven points be pointed by straight lines, we get a perfect cube within a perfect sphere. The cube was sacred in all ages.
From the New Jersey Freemason.
This explanation should be even more interesting and informative to Royal Arch Masons and certainly fills in some blanks in our education .