Friday, January 18, 2008
THE ASIATIC BRETHREN - Continued
Source: Marvin S. Antelman, TO ELIMINATE THE OPIATE, Zahavia, Ltd.
There is no doubt about the Frankist rites of the Asiatic Brethren lodge and their esteem of the All-Seeing Eye.(p. 124-125)
The Asiatic Brethren adopted Christian symbols and were required to eat pork and milk. Professor Scholem has proven that the Brethren were dominated by Sabbatian conceptions.
While Dobrushka, founder of the Vieneese Asiatic Lodge, went to an early death, Ephraim Joseph Hirschfield (1755-1820), a Frankist and activist in Mendelssohn's circle was active with the Vienna Lodge and was a missionary for the Asiatic Brethren. He was described as its "central spiritual pillar."
Hirschfield preached that he who occupied himself with Kabbala could pass beyond the confines of the Catholic, Muslim or Jewish religions and reach "the one and only true, pure and overall religion." From 1792 until his derath in 1820 Hirschfield settled in Offenbach, seat of the Frankists, where he devoted much time to their activities.
A close acquaintance of Hirschfield was Franz Joseph Molitor who was historian for the Vienna Lodge. In 1812 Molitor (1779-1860) who was a Christian with Frankist leanings, became head of the Jewish Freemasonry lodge in Frankfurt which had illuministic tendencies. He invited Hirschfield to introduce Asiatic rites but this was rejected by the lodge, especially since that lodge had been chartered prior to Napoleon's defeat by the Illuminati's Grand Orient Lodge of Paris and made it suspect.
Molitor revered Frankist Jonathan Ebeschutz...
In the wake of Illuministic German-Jewish freemasonry Lodges, we find that the Rothschilds very adroitly steered their way into a position of control over these lodges in much the same manner as Friedrich, the Duke of Brunswick, member of the Illuminati was one of the main sponsors of the Vienna Asiatic Brethren Lodge until his death in 1792. (p. 125-126)
The illuminist concepts that were the foundation for the Asiatic Brethren may have come from a Franciscan monk according to Jacob Katz:
Source: Jacob Katz, JEWS AND FREEMASONS IN EUROPE, 1723-1939, Harvard University Press
I have no firsthand evidence on the immediate causes for the emergence of this order. Information has been culled from statements of members who became active later. According to them, an erstwhile Franciscan monk, Justus, whose civil name had been Bischoff, had taken a prominent part in its founding. Justus had spent years in the Orient, especially in Jerusalem, where he had struck up an acquaintance with Jewish Cabalists. He studied their disciplines and even obtained from them manuscripts which constituted the source for the Order's theosophic doctrines and ceremonial regulations. Although these details have not been corroborated, the traces of such a personality are very real, so that little if any doubt can be cast on his existence. On another figure, Azariah by name, who is reputed to have given Justus the manuscripts, the evidence is rather doubtful. According to the testimony (which we shall examine presently) of Ephraim Joseph Hirschfeld, Azariah belonged to a cabalistic sect identified, according to another version, as a vestige of the Sabbatai Zevi movement.
The lodge did not last long. Regular German Masonic lodges that refused to admit Jews opposed it. Infighting developed within the Brethren and the lodge was disbanded. However, even before it was disbanded, Hirschfeld was instrumental in founding another:
The Order of the Asiatic Brethren was a broad attempt to erect some type of Masonic framework within the borders of which both Jews and gentiles would be included. But it was not the only attempt. In 1790, even before the Order had finally ceased to exist, two Christians, Hirschfeld and Catter, had founded the Toleranzloge in Berlin with the avowed object of admitting both gentiles and Jews. These two men were by no means original thinkers. Their conceptions were a diluted solution of humanistic principles: belief in truth, brotherhood, and beauty, mixed with the vestiges of certain Christian doctrines: the fall of man and the necessity of his moral regeneration. They even retained some of the Christian symbols current in Masonic usage: Jews took their oath on the Gospel of Saint John, not "on a Hebrew Old Testament." Nevertheless, the founders proclaimed that "Freemasonry is obliged to bring Jews and Christians closer together and to eliminate outworn prejudices. It is their duty to make Jews, if one may say so, more human and to raise them to higher levels of culture." It was admitted, however, that only such Jews were worthy of membership as had already approached more closely to Christianity and whose open adherence to that religion was only obstructed by family circumstances. In the eyes of the founders, men like the Itzig brothers, Professor Herz, and Levi, the banker, were considered to fit into such a category. It may be presumed that these Jews, and especially Isaac Daniel Itzig, had a hand in establishing the lodge. Its founding possibly may have been from the very beginning a reaction to their disappointment at the anti-Jewish mood then pervading the Asiatic Order.(Katz, chapter 4)