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Cramer’s book (modernly referred to as “The Rosicrucian Emblems of Daniel Cramer”) contained 40 plates, etched in copper, used to print images involving symbolism of the mystic heart, fire, cross, and other imagery.  Each plate contained a reference to a passage in the bible, and a sentence in latin to act as a focus for contemplation, related to the plate.


It has been theorized (yet essentially impossible to prove conclusively due to lack of historical documents) that there was a large exchange of ideas between the Rosicrucians of the day, and the earliest speculative Freemasons.  To set the time period: the oldest known records from a Masonic lodge date to Lodge of Edinburgh (Mary’s Chapel number 1) in Scotland, from 1599. It is presumed that there were a number of other lodges existing at that time period.  Further, not conclusively known, but supposed by many researchers, this is the period when Freemasonry was changing from operative to speculative.  Quote from “Today in Masonic History”:


In the late 1500's the world was in the midst of the renaissance. Knowledge was beginning to flow more freely in the world. The first printed books were in existence, the Gutenberg Bible was first printed in the 1450's. The operative lodges were in danger of loosing their livelihood. People were learning about mathematics and other skills outside of the lodges. Not to make our ancient operative brothers sound like they were only in it for the money, they actually probably were, they probably began to become concerned with the fact soon anyone could figure out the knowledge needed to build a cathedral. They needed a way to keep themselves tied to their benefactors, the people who paid to have the cathedrals and other edifices built, the aristocrats. By now the aristocrats were hungry for knowledge as well, the age of enlightenment was on its way in. There were benefits all around. Operative masons brought wealthy influential men into their organization, the speculative initiates got the opportunity to learn some of the skills taught in the lodges.


Eventually the individuals who called themselves speculative masons wanted to apply the knowledge they were receiving, what better way than through tools for their everyday life.


This was the world in the decades before the publishing of Daniel Cramer’s classic work on mystical Christianity.  I am not a trained historian and will offer no arguments or theories about exchanges between Rosicrucians and early Freemasons.  I will however offer a few examples directly from Daniel Cramer’s book.  Brothers can judge for themselves what they mean, but their parallels to symbols found in the 3 blue lodge degrees will be interesting for keen eyes.  




“In thy light shall we see light.” (Psalms 36:9)


I see the light in your light, let darkness be far away, he is wise who gains wisdom from the book of the Lord.




Emblem #12: I LOVE


“Blow upon my garden, that the spices thereof may flow out.” (Song of Solomon 4:16)


Let me be kindled, Jesus, by your incense and breath; I flame, let yours be the love; I am fragrant, let yours be the scent

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