The Mindset of a Simple Soul

WB W.L. Wilmshurst, in his article, The Ceremony of Initiation, Analysis, and Commentary, wrote:

 “The First-Degree Ceremony used on the reception of a Candidate into the Craft is designed to introduce him to the first stage of a system of knowledge and self-discipline which, if faithfully followed up and lived out in his personal life, will clarify and transform his mind from its natural state of darkness to one of Light, i.e., expanded clear-seeing spiritual consciousness raised far beyond and existing independently of the perceptions of the natural senses.”

He said this about the mindset that a man should have as he begins the experience of Masonry,

 “If thine eye (soul) be single (simple and unadulterated by passion and wrong notions), thy whole being will be full of Light.”

He went on to say:

 “He who enters the Lodge in quest of Light should leave all his previous learning behind him with his garments and loose the shoes of personal opinion from off his feet. He should think of himself as a child, and as being taken into a world of new sights and sounds, and where new ideas and even a different logic obtain from those with which he has previously been familiar, and where he must begin to recast his ideas and his life.”

Zen Buddhism uses the term “shoshin” to refer to having an attitude of openness, eagerness, and lack of preconceptions when studying a subject, even at an advanced level, just as a beginner in that subject would.

When you enter your lodge the next time, maybe your soul should be simple, looking for, as WB Wilmshurst said, “new sights and sounds, new ideas, and even a different logic.”

Ignore the purple the fraternity may have draped across your shoulders, approach each brother on the level, as an Entered Apprentice, and ask yourself, “what may I learn from my brother?”

Have a Great Masonic Week!

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