“Symbols” as stated in our response to “What is Masonry” i.e.
“It is a System of Morality, Veiled in Allegory and Illustrated by Symbols
This I intend to approach from both an Exoteric (outward & apparent) and Esoteric (inward & hidden) perspective and in doing so I am leaning very heavily on the “Freemasons’ Guide and Compendium” written by Bernard E.Jones. He writes :-
“The first learning in the world, we are told, was chiefly in symbols, and the wisdom of the ancient peoples was largely symbolic. All religious systems, right back to the dawn of history, taught their devotees by means of symbols, as witness some of the symbols associated with the Christian religion, but known still earlier to the ancient Egyptians, Assyrians, Greeks etc. Symbols were a part of man’s most primitive religious ideas, often meaning something to the Initiate and nothing to anyone else. “In a symbol there is concealment but yet revelation” says Thomas Carlyle, “silence and speech acting together, the infinite blending with the finite.”
Symbolism has long been associated with religious personages. Scores or hundreds of saints have their own symbols–ranging from a pot of ointment for St. Mary Magdalene to a hive of bees for St Bernard; from shoemakers tools for St Crispin to a builders rule for St Thomas. A dove with olive branch in its beak is the symbol for Noah. The Kingly figure standing under an arch is the symbol for King Solomon. The Early Christians are believed to have used symbols—a fish, dove etc., engraved on their rings and seals—as a means of revealing their faith to fellow Christians without betraying themselves to their prosecutors.”
As Freemasons we are incredibly familiar with the use of Symbolism in the furnishings of our Lodge Rooms, in the conferring of our Degrees and in the jewelry that we wear on our persons.
Personally, I like the use of symbolism in my life, such as the ring on left hand reminds me that I am married, (happily at that) the Celtic Cross I wear about my neck reminds me of my heritage and the fact that I am a Christian, and the Masonic Ring I wear reminds me constantly of my Obligations.
I am quite certain that, without much searching, we can all identify with Symbolism in some personal way.
Does Evil Exist
One day a University Professor decided to debate with his pupils. He asked. Did God create everything that exists? A student answered bravely “Yes he did” “Everything” asked the teacher? “Yes, everything” Was the answer of the student. “In that case, God also created EVIL. Because EVIL exists” said the teacher
To that the student had no answer and remained in silence. The teacher was delighted to prove one more time that faith was only a MYTH. Suddenly another student raised his hand and asked
“May I ask you a question Professor”? “Of course” was the answer “Does COLD exist” “Of course” answered the Professor- “Did your never feel COLD”
“Actually, sir, cold does not exist. According to studies in Physics, cold is the total and complete absence of heat. An object can only be studied if it has and transmits energy and it is the heat of an object that transmits its energy. Without heat the objects are inert, incapable to react. But cold does not exist. We created the term COLD to explain the lack of heat” “And DARKNESS” continues the student “It exists” replied the Professor
“Again you are wrong sir, DARKNESS is the total absence of Light. You can only study Light and brightness, but not darkness.
The prism of Nicols shows the variety of different colours in which light can be decomposed according to the longitude of the waves. Darkness is the term we created to explain the total absence of LIGHT.” And finally the student asked “an EVIL, sir does EVIL exist”?
“God did not create evil. Evil is the absence of God in peoples’ hearts, it is the absence of LOVE, HUMANITY and FAITH. Love and Faith are like the heat and the light. They Exist. Their absence leads to EVIL.”
Now it was the turn of the Professor to remain silent!!!!! The name of the student was Albert Einstein.