A lecture is scedulled for today, the 24th November, in Macau concerning the 300 years of the Grand Lodge of London and Westminster recently commemorated with a public event at the Royal Albert Hall in London. The lecturer is Arnaldo Gonçalves, Professor of the Polytechnic Institute in Macau and researcher in Masonic historiography and symbolism. He is the author of an article about Freemasonry in Macau, published some years ago by Revista de Cultura, the revue of Macau Cultural Institute. It is the first initiative in more than 20 years abot the Craft taken place in Macau, now a territory under sovereignty of the People’s Republic of China. The lecture is organised by Luso-Asian Forum, an NGO focused in the intercultural exchange between Portugal and China. It is the third conference of a cycle entitled “From the Sacred to the Profane. Conferences at the Delta of the River”.
Kamel Oussayef, a longtime resident of Winchester, recently published “The Spirit of Freemasonry,” his second book. It is an annotated translation of a rare manuscript written by Jean Frédérique Doszedardski in 1804, the year that Napoleon Bonaparte crown himself Emperor of the French.
The 500-page book is available at the Winchester Public Library and on the website of the Masonic Scottish Rite Museum and Library in Lexington at scottishritenmj.org. It is divided into 12 chapters that can be read in any order.
“The Spirit of Freemasonry” as related by Doszedardski, is a compilation of fascinating excerpts from various commonplace books, descriptions of Masonic rituals and ceremonies and a few historic and religious events that have shaped the history our world.
To our delight and surprise, more trivial topics were included such as, the protocol of a “Table Lodge” where Freemasons gather in a lesser formal setting for copious meals, libations and camaraderie. It is clearly described and its strange origin and vocabulary are explained. To the initiated, “firing a cannon loaded with strong red powder” simply means “to drink a glass of red wine.” Enjoy … the book without moderation.
Doszedardski was a prominent Freemason who held the prestigious title of Sovereign Grand Inspector General of the 33rd and last Degree, the highest rank in Freemasonry. He also described himself in one of his manuscripts as Doctor in Medicine, Count, Knight and former Captain. He was born in Warsaw, Poland, in 1770.
As Freemasons fond of a full and scrupulous defense of freedom of expression we solidarize ourselves with this testimony of the Grand Orient de France.
“Contre la violence et les menaces, la liberté d’expression doit être garantie
A l’heure où de nouvelles menaces de mort sont proférées à l’encontre de l’équipe de Charlie Hebdo, le Grand Orient de France tient à l’assurer, ainsi qu’il l’a toujours fait, de son indéfectible soutien.
Au nom des principes humanistes et universalistes qu’il défend, le Grand Orient de France dénonce le fanatisme et le totalitarisme dont témoignent ces appels au meurtre. Il n’est pas tolérable que, dans une société démocratique, la liberté d’expression soit ainsi attaquée et que la violence se substitue au débat, à la nécessaire confrontation pacifique des idées. Il n’est pas davantage tolérable que, dans une société libre, les dogmes de toute nature, et notamment meurtriers, s’érigent en menace permanente.”
Grand Orient de France