MEMPHIS-MISRAIM IN THE NETHERLANDS
“ESOTERIC FREEMASONRY FOR MEN AND WOMEN”
Within Freemasonry so-called ‘Egyptian Masonry’ holds a special place. The Egyptian Rites were born from a meeting between different initiatory schools, the oldest of the Mediterranean basin, and Freemasonry which offered these initiatory schools a structure adapted to the contemporary world. Egyptian Freemasonry is a school of initiation which aims to allow women and men to improve in order to be able to shine in the world around them, and especially, to try to answer the existential questions that thinking humanity has always asked, based on the study of our tradition. This requires a work on oneself, a discipline and the respect of certain rules – but which will never be in opposition to the principles of freedom of thought and your moral and religious duties.
We must understand the adjective “Egyptian” not as the literal origin of these Rites, but as a concept of traditional filiation and a continuation of Mediterranean and Hermetic Western Wisdom through initiatory chains of societies stretching back to the Middle Ages and the Renaissance.
Lodge Seshat is a recently established Blue Lodge in the Rite of Memphis and Misraim in the Netherlands. We are an international Lodge and the working language is English.
We have received the Masonic Light from experts who have been perfecting their rituals over a 70 year period. This provides us with an authentic lineage in the Ancient and Primitive Rite of Memphis and Misraim and our Lodge will repeat that same standard of excellence.
As Brothers and Sisters we are made the custodians of this very rich initiatory body of teachings. We are bound by the same attraction for Symbolism, Esotericism and Hermeticism as well as the nature of matter and consciousness. We are excited to be able to transmit these esoteric initiations to other worthy seekers and to receive them within the spiritual culture of our Lodge.
Receiving and transmitting these initiations is a labor of love and service towards those who want to walk on an esoteric masonic path.
The Order’s degrees of instruction are divided into three sets, which constitute:
- Symbolic Masonry, common to all Rites, structured in three Degrees, which are Degrees of Formation and discovery.
- Philosophical Masonry that brings it into a new dimension, which sees personal research being refined, free of all dogma.
- Hermetic or Esoteric Masonry, which leads us to study the different Traditions of Humanity and causes us to discover the four ultimate Degrees of our Rite, the Arcana Arcanorum.
Symbolic Masonry gives an explanation of symbolism and provides the foundations of philosophical research.
Philosophical Masonry teaches the philosophy of history, as well as ancient myths. Its purpose is to place us on the Way of the search for origins, causes and effects.
Hermetic or Esoteric Masonry deals with high philosophy and studies the spiritual mysteries of the different ages of humanity, it admits the most ancient philosophical and esoteric work.
SCHOOL OF INITIATION
Unique to the Egyptian Rites is the esoteric approach to Freemasonry. The initiation rituals and practices are meant to help the individual shine in the world and assist them in discovering their inward spiritual life.
The paradox of spiritual work is that to find ourselves we must loose ourselves. We think that self-mastery means that we have full control over ourselves but if we want to be in control, we again find ourselves within self-created boundaries. To know ourselves we must go beyond those boundaries of self-imposition.
Philosophy points to the ultimate mystery of that paradox but it is only through personal exploration and direct experience that we can solve it. The Great Work is therefor self-motivated and requires the utmost sincerity of the candidate. Freedom of thought and the individual search for Truth free from all imposition of a particular belief and dogma is therefor essential.
The Order attempts to enhance one’s possibilities by creating a place outside of the daily routine of ordinary life where rituals, personal practices and symbols encourage inner reflection and exploration.
In this way Masons have the freedom to present works touching on philosophical, moral and metaphysical issues and to discuss them in an atmosphere of openness, nobility and tolerance which forms the basis of all spiritual development.
“The duties towards God can only be explained by Theosophy, that is to say, the knowledge of God. The knowledge of God, however, is only possible through the living Word, which is in the inner nature of man and which always speaks whenever we become capable of hearing it. Therefore, it is our first duty to seek the living Word, in order to draw out the seed of immortality from within ourselves and to grow a perfect plant through it. If God is in us, it is necessary to know this ourselves in order to find Him. Self-knowledge is thus man’s first duty to himself, but it is also the most difficult duty. Most people seek everywhere except within themselves. Man walks on the earth, dreams in heaven and believes he is with God, but he does not want to enter within himself, although he cannot find refuge anywhere except within. He cannot hear the voice of the preacher in the desert that is in him, nor can he cultivate that desert to finally bear the fruits of life in it. The world is the obstacle to self-knowledge. It has wrapped its chains around us, and we fear the freedom of independence. Many call themselves “freemasons” yet do not know the door of the temple into which they have to enter.“ “Learn to know yourself!” In following this teaching lies our salvation. In it we find everything that can lift man from death to life, from bondage to freedom. We have seven steps to climb. On each of these steps man can find evidence of their activity and witness the experience of each one. Blessed is the one who climbs all the steps and, in perfect self-knowledge, hears the voice of the Master, which gives him insight into all the mysteries of life.”