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Education - Networking - Upcoming Events - Reflection - News & More
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Join Grand Commander Cole at the 2020 Children's Language & Literacy Conference!

In this short video, Scottish Rite Grand Commander Jim Cole discusses the upcoming 2020 Children's Language & Literacy Conference coming up this September in St. Louis, Missouri.
View Past Issues of the Orient E-Newsletter:
"Human progress is our cause, liberty of thought our supreme wish, freedom of conscience our mission, and the guarantee of equal rights to all people everywhere our ultimate goal."

-The Scottish Rite Creed
From the Introduction of this month's suggested reading:

"We can choose to be contemplative Masons or not. It is possible to simply carry a membership card and pass while wearing the Masonic apron as a kind of friendly (if somewhat cynical) disguise. But our speculative Art calls us to more. The process of initiation demands our sincere engagement if it is to be truly effective. Masonic readers can indeed be truly grateful for authors such a W. Kirk MacNulty, who have done so much to provide new opportunities to gain a deeper understanding of the degrees as they share the ideas that helped them along their respective journeys."

- Shawn Eyer
Harvard University, George Washington Masonic National Memorial
See more details about this month's suggested reading near the bottom of this newsletter, under Masonic Education & Philosophy

"It is never too late for man to learn. Not part only, but the whole of life is a school. There never comes a time, even amidst the decays of age, when it is fit to lay aside the eagerness of acquisition, or the cheerfulness of endeavor."
- - - Selected passages from Morals and Dogma - - -
"There are works yet left for Masonry to accomplish, greater than the twelve labors of Hercules; to advance ever resolutely and steadily; to enlighten the minds of the people, to reconstruct society, to reform the laws, and improve the public morals."

Life is a school. The world is neither prison nor penitentiary, nor a palace of ease, nor an amphitheater for games and spectacles; but a place of instruction, and discipline. Life is given for moral and spiritual training; and the entire course of the great school of life is an education for virtue, happiness, and a future existence. The periods of Life are its terms; all human conditions, its forms; all human employments, its lessons. Families are the primary departments of this moral education; the various circles of society, its advanced stages; Kingdoms and Republics, its universities.

For it is true now, as it always was and always will be, that to be free is the same thing as to be pious, to be wise, to be temperate and just, to be frugal and abstinent, and to be magnanimous and brave; and to be the opposite of all these is the same as to be a slave.

We have high dignities and sounding titles. Do their possessors qualify themselves to enlighten the world in respect to the aims and objects of Masonry?

To pity the misfortunes of others; to be humble, but without meanness; to be proud, but without arrogance; to abjure every sentiment of hatred and revenge; to show himself magnanimous and liberal, without ostentation and without profusion; to be the enemy of vice; to pay homage to wisdom and virtue; to respect innocence; to be constant and patient in adversity, and modest in prosperity; to avoid every irregularity that stains the soul and distempers the body—it is by following these precepts that a Mason will become a good citizen, a faithful husband, a tender father, an obedient son, and a true brother; will honor friendship, and fulfill with ardor the duties which virtue and the social relations impose upon him.

It is because Masonry imposes upon us these duties that it is properly and significantly styled work; and he who imagines that he becomes a Mason by merely taking the first two or three Degrees, and that he may, having leisurely stepped upon that small elevation, thenceforward worthily wear the honors of Masonry, without labor or exertion, or self-denial or sacrifice, and that there is nothing to be done in Masonry, is strangely deceived. Is it true that nothing remains to be done in Masonry?
Above all things let us never forget that mankind constitutes one great brotherhood; all born to encounter suffering and sorrow, and therefore bound to sympathize with each other.
Read more selected 11th Degree excerpts from Morals and Dogma here.
"The more complex the world becomes, the more difficult it is to complete something without the cooperation of others."
Excerpt from Vested In Glory, 11th Degree – SUBLIME ELECT OF THE TWELVE
Essay by Ill. Bro. Jim Tresner, 33°, Grand Cross
The Eleventh Degree apron is white, lined and bordered in black, and with a black flap. As before, black represents those negative qualities typified by ignorance, error, and intolerance. White represents purity of life and intention. On the apron is a flaming heart, a symbol repeated on the cordon. The flaming heart represents zeal and devotedness, especially the zeal and devotedness of those who, throughout the world's history, have sacrificed themselves for the good of their country or mankind. 

On the cordon, above the heart, are the words Vincere Aut Mori, "Conquer Or Die."

The jewel is a sword of gold. It represents Truth. The allusion is to Hebrews 4:12, "For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword."
All these emblems point to devotedness, activity, zeal - and they can be a little uncomfortable. After all, we're told to "keep our cool," to "chill out," to "relax and go with the flow."

And here is the Scottish Rite saying "be committed," "care deeply and passionately," "fight against the current." It's the difference between a comfortable life and a productive life. And the sad truth is that the productive life is seldom comfortable.

But our duty is to be aflame. 
Historic Partnership to Advance Freemasonry in North America

Watch the Announcement of at the Conference of Grand Masters in North America on February 17, 2020
Dear Brethren,

The Scottish Rite, Northern Masonic Jurisdiction, Shriners International, and the Scottish Rite, Southern Jurisdiction proudly announce a historic coming together of our organizations in the  joint sponsorship of

More than just a website, is dedicated to explaining just who Freemasons are, and what we stand for. It serves as a guide for men looking to understand the truths of our craft and the rewards of our brotherhood. It is a place where information about Freemasonry is accurate, visually compelling, and aspirational.  

Central to the site is a powerful referral mechanism that links men interested in joining to Grand Lodge membership contacts in states and provinces throughout North America. We hope you too will help spread the word far and wide by sharing the site with friends, family, and other good men you know. 

A Historic Partnership

The Scottish Rite, NMJ, Shriners International, and the Scottish Rite, SJ, have united in purpose and in service to the craft.  As we open our plans to Grand Lodges across North America there is no doubt that, together, we can achieve the extraordinary and continue to share Freemasonry with the world.

The work we have embarked on circles us back to the place where we have always been strong. The noble place where we help a man declare to the world, I am not just a man. I am a Mason.


David A. Glattly, 33°
Sovereign Grand Commander
Scottish Rite, Northern Masonic Jurisdiction

Jeffrey L. Sowder
Imperial Potentate
Shriners International

James D. Cole, 33°
Sovereign Grand Commander
Scottish Rite, Southern Jurisdiction

Learn How It Works

You can learn more about the philosophy and motivation behind the site, as well as how the referral function works in this short video. 
Watch this quick video explaining how works

Download the
Booklet to Learn More

You can download the informational booklet at this link

Please click the video link below for an important message from
Sovereign Grand Commander James D. Cole, 33°

In this short video, Grand Commander Cole talks about an exciting new partnership between The Scottish Rite Southern and Northern Jurisdictions, and Shriners International:

The Grand Commander of the Southern Jurisdiction explains why the site was developed,
and how you can help in its efforts.

"He who has so little knowledge of human nature as to seek happiness by changing anything but his own disposition will waste his life in fruitless efforts."
Excerpt from A BRIDGE TO LIGHT, by Ill. Bro. Rex R. Hutchens, 33°, Grand Cross

Are you in control of your life?
In Masonic degrees, candidates make a series of ceremonial prescribed circuits of the altar. This practice, called circumambulation, is derived from the ancients and existed among the Romans, Semites, Hindus, and others. It is thought to of been a rite of purification. The sun was believed to travel around the earth; the initiates imitated the movement of the sun when they made circuits around the altar. In the Symbolic Lodge, the circuits of the craftsman at the installation of the officers symbolize the possession of the lodge by the new Master. In Scottish Rite Masonry, this ancient symbol of purification is adopted to represent a renewal and virtue through the performance of duty.

In addition to circumambulation, this degree is filled with numerous symbols which carry its teachings more than the actual ceremony. We are now advancing to the loftier philosophical lessons of Masonry and so encounter more complex symbolism.
The entire lecture of this degree deals with the dignity of human nature and the vast powers of the human soul. Contemplation and knowledge, leads to the object of a Mason's everlasting search: WISDOM. Though this wisdom is human wisdom, it nevertheless arises from the Deity and is a mirror of one of His attributes. Pike presents a convincing argument that each man can be and should be in control of his life. He conveys a beautiful and inspiring philosophy of life. 
"The true Tarot is symbolism; it speaks no other language and offers no other signs... The system of Tarot embodies symbolical presentations of universal ideas, behind which lie all the implicits of the human mind, and it is in this sense that they contain secret doctrine, which is the realization by the few of truths embedded in the consciousness of all."
Excerpt from the Lecture of the 11th Degree Ritual – SUBLIME ELECT OF THE TWELVE
Continuing the tale of the Ninth and Tenth Degrees, the Eleventh dramatizes the capture, trials and fates of the three assassins of Hiram the Builder. We are particularly reminded that revenge is ultimately met out by the hand of God, though we must pursue evil to its deepest recesses in our efforts to defeat it.

We are taught to deal fairly with all men and see that none are subjected to extortion or the unjust imposition of burdens. Neither fear nor fault of your own may permit harm to fall upon your country or its people.

The value of trail by jury is extolled, without which liberty, and immunity from wrong and oppression cannot be guaranteed. We are shown herein how an Independent Judiciary is the third leg upon which a stable and just government stands...

The present Degree shadows forth that other free institution, without which liberty would often be but a name, the trial by jury. Their unanimous verdict is necessary to convict someone of a crime. No people are free, in whose courts do not sit upright judges, whom power cannot terrify. They only are free where neither wealth corrupts, nor ambition seduces. No people are free in whose courts power rather than misfortune can convict the innocent or acquit the guilty. The right of trial by jury is of more worth to a man than the right to vote—individual liberty and immunity from wrong and oppression being much more dependent on it.
March 27–28 • St. Louis, MO
Sovereign Grand Commander Jim Cole,33° has a special message and invitation for ALL Scottish Rite Masons!  The Grand Commander wants to meet YOU this spring at his special "Town Hall Meetings" which will be part of the 2020 Scottish Rite Workshops. 

To learn more, watch the message and click the links below for complete information
about the 2020 Scottish Rite Workshops.
Are you ready to be one of the leaders of your Valley?
We are only weeks away from the 2020 Scottish Rite Leadership Workshops.  These workshops are designed with every Scottish Rite Mason in mind, and will prepare you to be the best Scottish Rite leader you can be.  Workshops dates and locations are: 
  • March 13–14 • Charlotte, NC
  • March 27–28 • St. Louis, MO
  • April 24–25 • San Diego, CA
If you're ready for the next step in your Scottish Rite journey, CLICK HERE for complete information and to register now!
These workshops are open to ALL Scottish Rite Masons!
7:00pm - 10:00pm
1st Wednesday of each month
Starting March 4, 2020
(All Master Masons are Invited)
The Blue Lodges are the strength and foundation of our Fraternity. Many Brothers desire Masonic Education. At each meeting the first hour we will have two education presentations you can take back to your Lodge plus we will have discussion on each presentation. The material for the education will be based on Albert Pike's "Esoterika" The Symbolism of the Blue Degrees of Freemasonry and Rev. Dr. Frederich Dalcho's orations to the Grand Lodge of South Carolina in 1801 that is very relevant today. We will also take time for some study club opportunities to help with Sub Cards. Masonic Education is important to strengthen the bridge between the Blue Lodges and the Scottish Rite and will increase attendance for both.
Click for more info
7:00pm - 10:00pm
3rd Tuesday and 3rd Wednesday of each month
Starting February 18, 2020
We will take the moral lesson of a degree and Albert Pike’s Morals & Dogma to base our philosophical discussion on how we can apply that lesson to our everyday life.

For those wanting to stay after 8:30, we will have break out sessions to either continue the discussion, explore the setup of the degree or work on the Master Craftsman Program III: Scottish Rite Philosophy uses Albert Pike’s Morals & Dogma, Annotated Edition, by Arturo de Hoyos, 33°, Grand Cross and returns to the ritual of the Scottish Rite to re-explore it on a deeper level, by looking for the moral lesson imparted in each degree and then applying that lesson to one’s everyday life. The course consists of 33 quizzes, grouped into 10 sections.
Click for more info
- Dinner & Meeting -
Hosted by the Chapter of Rose Croix of the Valley of Kansas City

March 25, 2020
Click for more info
Click for more info
Click for more info

Register now for this historic gathering of Scottish Rite Leaders from both the Northern and Southern Jurisdictions alongside a continuing education opportunity for Language Therapists, Dyslexia Specialists and Speech-Language Pathologists.

All Scottish Rite Members care deeply about children’s education and preparation for a happy and successful life. Removing the barrier of challenged communication from dyslexia, literacy or speech by providing free and accessible care is our common goal. The Conference is essential to each of us and will provide cutting edge communication speakers with topics relevant to all on future breakthrough programs for our kids.

The conference will be hosted by the Orient of Missouri and will take place Wednesday, September 9 (6:00pm) - Friday, September 11 (1:30pm).

Programming will include four areas:

  • Speech-Language Pathology/Communication Disorders
  • Literacy and Dyslexia
  • Interprofessional Collaboration (Music Therapy, Occupational Therapy)
  • Scottish Rite Sessions with Keynote Speakers from both the Northern and Southern Jurisdictions

For more information, email



Valley of Joplin
2020 Spring Reunion

Friday, March 20
& Saturday, March 21

Valley of St. Louis
2020 Spring Reunion

Friday, April 10
& Saturday, April 11

Valley of Kansas City
2020 Spring Reunion

Friday, April 17
& Saturday, April 18
Please submit your Valley events to for inclusion in future issues
- - - MORE LIGHT - - -
"I cannot teach anybody anything. I can only make them think"
Contemplating Craft Freemasonry
Working the Way of the Craftsman

W. Kirk MacNulty
Get this book on Amazon

Contemplating Craft Freemasonry is an intriguing manual for Masons who desire to explore the Craft as a contemplative spiritual practice. Relying upon insights drawn from Jungian psychology as well as from the Western esoteric tradition’s essential sources—Neoplatonism, Kabbalah, and Hermetic thought—W. Kirk MacNulty encourages the reader to reflect deeply upon the symbolism and ceremonies of the Masonic experience. The perfect companion to the author’s enduring Masonic classic, The Way of the Craftsman, this accessible workbook offers dozens of contemplations that assist the reader in exploring the inner teachings of Freemasonry on an initiatic journey from the center of the lodge to the Temple of his own being.


“Kirk MacNulty has produced a series of deceptively small essays on Freemasonry. Each is only two to five pages, and yet as a whole they address the profound questions: ‘Why are we here, and what is the Craft for?’ This book is a delight for the Mason who likes to ponder, to speculate . . . to think.”—S. Brent Morris, Ph.D., Past Master, Quatuor Coronati Lodge

“Masonic readers can indeed be truly grateful for authors such as W. Kirk MacNulty, who have done so much to provide new opportunities to gain a deeper understanding of the degrees as they share the ideas that helped them along their respective journeys.”—Shawn Eyer, Editor of Ahiman: A Review of Masonic Culture and Tradition

About the Author

W. Kirk MacNulty’s experience in Freemasonry spans more than fifty years. He is a Past Master of lodges in England and the United States, and the author of several notable books about the philosophy and culture of the Masonic Order, including Freemasonry: A Journey Through Ritual and Symbol (Thames & Hudson, 1991), Freemasonry: Symbols, Secrets, Significance (Thames & Hudson, 2006), and The Way of the Craftsman: Deluxe Edition (Plumbstone, 2017).

Excerpt from the introduction of CONTEMPLATING CRAFT MASONRY:

In this introduction, we will consider our working in Freemasonry in a manner that is rather different than usual. We will ask ourselves, “Why are we here? What is the purpose of the Craft?” While many believe that the answers to those questions are fairly obvious, it is the author’s hope that this section will introduce some new thoughts.

The basic principles of Freemasonry are “Brotherly Love, Relief, and Truth.” When it comes to Brotherly Love, it is reasonable to argue that our Fraternity is doing pretty well. Our lodges are places of good fellowship where friendship and rewarding social interactions are easy and gratifying. Without doubt, it should be our endeavor to ensure that that situation continues. On the subject of Relief we are doing even better. Masonic charities are noted for their generous giving to society in general, as well as to Brother Masons; and our Order receives much gratitude- from Masons and from non-Masons – for these gifts. We should work in this area, too, to ensure that we continue in this way. Truth is, perhaps, a bit more of a puzzle. Certainly, we are truthful with each other and with the world; but that seems to be little more than the behavior of most people in our society. Why do we need elaborate rituals to teach that, or does Truth in the Masonic context mean something else?
Know of a great obscure book or resource not listed here?
Click the button below to recommend it and we'll add it to our list!

CLICK HERE for your FREE Morals and Dogma Kindle Edition


Ancient & Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry

Master Craftsman Program
The Scottish Rite Master Craftsman (SRMC) program is an exciting, by-mail correspondence course designed and administered by staff at the House of the Temple in Washington, D.C., under the guidance and leadership of the Supreme Council, 33° of the A&A Scottish Rite, Southern Jurisdiction, USA. Currently, three courses and a Group Studies program constitute the SRMC. 
CLICK HERE for Full Information about the Scottish Rite Master Craftsman Program.

The Scottish Rite Research Society

"Studying our past to illuminate our future"
Since its formation in 1991, the Scottish Rite Research Society (SRRS) has become one of the most dynamic forces in contemporary Masonic research, pursuing a publication program that emphasizes quality—both in content and in physical form. The Society has grown to over 4,000 members worldwide since inception. Its publications have redefined the standards of Masonic scholarship. Anyone who is interested in deepening his or her understanding of Freemasonry would benefit from Society membership.
One need not be a member of the Scottish Rite, or even be a Mason, to join the SRRS.
Life Memberships are available by visiting the membership page.
The Masonic Roundtable is a weekly panel of Masons from around the United States who discuss the latest and greatest in Masonic news, events, scholarship, and happenings.

Thursdays at 9:30 PM Eastern / 8:30 PM Central

Join the conversation!

Whence Came You?

Masonic Podcast
"Providing Light for Freemasons and People Interested in Freemasonry."
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"Whence Came You was born out of a need for Masonic Education world wide. When lodges fell short explaining symbolism and the deeper aspects of our craft, it became apparent that something needed to be done. Bro. Robert Johnson began to record the papers he read and the response was tremendous. Reading a few pieces each week, and regularly releasing them to thirsty minds everywhere, the show began to take off and quickly became a staple for Masons, new and old."
"Join us each week, Sundays at 9:30 PM Central time for new episodes.
Always on and always on the level."


A Podcast for the Thinking Freemason
"The New Voice of Brotherhood"
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"The purpose of X-Oriente is to help unite Masons who feel that Masonry should be more than just a nice meal with friends. It is a 20-40 minute Podcast that revolves around ideas that might be of interest to Freemasons, exploring the whys and wherefores of Masonry.

Each show will explore an idea or topic. Sometimes the topics will extend from Masonic practice into civics, philosophy, social sciences, literature and art. X-Oriente also is a passionate advocate for critical thinking skills. We'll never stop asking why, and we'll always look for evidence to back up our assertions."

In Kabbalah Revealed, an enlightening 16 episode series, Anthony Kosinec introduces “what Kabbalah is” and “what Kabbalah isn’t,” in this overview of some of its basic concepts, and the difference between authentic Kabbalah and how Kabbalah is popularly viewed. He speaks from the perspective of “practical Kabbalah,” as taught today by Rav Michael Laitman, PhD. Essentially, this is the process of how to reveal Kabbalah’s hidden aspect: the Upper Worlds—what is hidden behind our five senses.  
The Tyler's Place Website
The Tyler's Place Website
The official podcast of the Scottish Rite Supreme Council, 33°, S.J. USA. News, stories and interviews all about Freemasonry, by Brothers, for Brothers.

The Freemason Network is a social networking site that connects you to thousands of other Masons around the U.S. and 147 countries around the World!   It’s simple to use, gives you the latest news and opinions about Masonic topics and connects you to your Brothers near and far.   

Free membership includes:

  • Masonic news and events from all over the U.S.
  • Share the Light in discussion forums, create your blog
  • See Masonic pictures and videos
  • Join the Group for YOUR Grand Lodge!

The Freemason Network is hosted by The Supreme Council, 33° in Washington. You must be a Mason to join the Freemason Network.

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It is the mission of the Scottish Rite Foundation of Missouri, Inc. to enhance the lives of the children of Missouri by actively embracing high social, moral and spiritual value through the RiteCare Childhood Language Program, Youth Programs, Scholarships and Disaster Relief.

The Scottish Rite Foundation of Missouri, Inc. was originally incorporated in 1946 as the Scottish Rite Endowment, Philanthropic, and Educational Foundation, Inc.  Its purpose was to provide the public charities of the Order and go beyond that given by the Almoner to needy brethren.

The Foundation concentrates on four principal charities:

  1. To provide financial support of the Orient RiteCare Clinics;
  2. To grant undergraduate scholarships to deserving individuals attending an accredited college or university and pursuing a bachelor’s degree;
  3. To give financial assistance for medical, dental, and personal needs to children who would otherwise have to do without the treatment or benefit; and
  4. To give financial assistance to Missouri DeMolays to offset their expenses related to leadership training and education.

It has been a matter of custom and precedent to urge those financially able Scottish Rite members who are 32° to give $32, those who are KCCH to give $32.50 and 33° brethren to give $33 annually to the Foundation.  There is also an Albert Pike Society which is composed of members who give $10,000 to the Foundation.  The contribution may be made in lump sum or over a period of ten years.  Donors receive recognition by having their names inscribed on a plaque which lists every member and which is displayed in each of the Valleys.

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The Missouri Scottish Rite E-News as a digital outlet including each of the five Missouri Scottish Rite Valleys for news and areas pertaining to Events and Scheduling, Social Opportunities, RiteCare, Charity and Philanthropy, Education, History, Philosophy and much more dedicated to expounding Wisdom, Strength and Beauty across our land. 
We have all the light we need – we just need to put it in practice.”
Publication of this Communication made possible by The LIGHT Foundation
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