The Entered Apprentice Degree: An Explanatory Lecture
In the realm of Freemasonry, the Entered Apprentice Degree is the first step in the journey of a Freemason. This article, based on a lecture by a Brother, a Master Mason, delves into the second section of the Entered Apprentice Degree, providing an explanatory lecture on the symbolism and teachings of this degree.
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The Purpose of Lectures in Freemasonry
In Freemasonry, the initiation ceremony is followed by lectures designed to explain the events and symbolism of the ritual. These lectures serve as a means of reflection and understanding, as the initiation process can be immersive and complex. The lectures are generally divided into sections, each focusing on different aspects of the degree. The Entered Apprentice Degree, for instance, includes an explanatory lecture and a historical lecture.
The explanatory lecture aims to elucidate the degree, while the historical lecture provides the context and origins of the ceremony. However, the naming and division of these lectures may vary across different jurisdictions and lodges around the globe.
The Explanatory Lecture of the Entered Apprentice Degree
The second section of the Entered Apprentice Degree, as practiced in Mississippi, is an explanatory lecture. This lecture delves into the symbolism and teachings of the degree. Two key symbols discussed in this lecture are the right hand and the lambskin or white leather apron.
Symbol of Fidelity: The Right Hand
The right hand is used as a symbol of fidelity in Freemasonry. This symbolism has its roots in ancient traditions where two right hands joined together or two human figures holding each other by the right hand were used to represent fidelity and sincerity. This symbolism is used in the Entered Apprentice Degree as a token of sincerity and a pledge of fidelity.
Emblem of Innocence: The Lambskin Apron
The lambskin or white leather apron is another significant symbol in Freemasonry. It is presented to the initiate during the Entered Apprentice Degree. The lamb, in all ages, has been considered an emblem of innocence. Therefore, the lambskin apron serves as a reminder of the purity of life and conduct, which is essential for gaining admission into the celestial Lodge above, where the Supreme Architect of the Universe presides.
The Importance of Symbolism in Freemasonry
The Entered Apprentice Degree, like all degrees in Freemasonry, is rich in symbolism. These symbols serve as tools for teaching moral and ethical lessons. The right hand and the lambskin apron, for instance, symbolize fidelity and innocence, respectively. These symbols are not just mere representations; they carry profound meanings and lessons that are essential to the journey of a Freemason.
The Entered Apprentice Degree is a significant step in the journey of a Freemason. The explanatory lecture serves as a guide, helping the initiate understand the symbolism and teachings of the degree. It provides insights into the moral and ethical lessons that form the foundation of Freemasonry. As Freemasons around the world continue their journey, these lectures serve as a beacon, illuminating the path of their Masonic journey.