Thursday, January 29, 2009
FROM JONATHAN SELLERS TIMELINE OF THE AUTHENTIC TRADITION
The year is 1738 and the first Catholic condemnation of Freemasonry has been issued by Pope Clement XII:
Pope Clement XII issued a papal bull condemning and excommunicating all Freemasons, whom he pronounced, "Enemies of the Roman Church." It has never been altogether clear why they should have been regarded as such -- especially as many of them, like the Jacobites at the time, were ostensibly Catholic. Perhaps the Pope was aware of the connections between early Freemasonry and the anti-Roman Rosicrucians of the 17th century. In any case some light may be shed on the matter by a letter released and published for the first time in 1962. This letter had been written by Pope Clement XII and addressed to an unknown correspondent. In its text the Pope declares that Masonic thought rests on a heresy encountered many times before -- the denial of Jesus' divinity. He further asserts that the guiding spirits, the 'masterminds,' behind Freemasonry are the same as those who provoked the Lutheran Reformation. The Pope may well have been paranoid; (since Nesta Webster didn't start writing for another 170 years yet) but it is important to note that he is not speaking of nebulous currents of thought or vague traditions. On the contrary, he is speaking of a highly organized group of individuals -- a sect, an order, a secret society -- who, through the ages, have dedicated themselves to subverting the edifice of Catholic Christianity.
There is no denying that elements of Judaism and elements of Christianity are all over Masonic doctrine. It might be convenient to blame the Jews for using Freemasonry to subvert Christianity, but it wouldn't be consistent with the facts. However, a Jewish heresy in the form of Sabbatianism is consistent with the facts. There is the bizarre Christian element. It's not Roman Catholicism. It's not Protestantism, either. It is clearly something else, something that fits into no category of Christianity other than Gnostic. Yet priests have become involved with this bizarre Christianity as Sellers explains much later in the timeline.
Under the heading of 1740s - 1750s, Sellers writes:
London. In the l740s and 1750s, "Rabbi" Zinzendorf (as he was then called) directed a mission to the Jews in London, in which mutual Kabbalistic studies served as a bridge between religions. At the same time, he organized his followers into a hierarchical secret society that functioned as an offshoot of "irregular" or "illuminist" Freemasonry.
According to James Hutton, an English Moravian who became a lifelong friend of Richard Cosway, the public society held open meetings in the Fetter Lane Chapel, while the elite interior order (the "Pilgrim Church") met secretly, lived communally, and practised Kabbalistic rituals. If Blake's parents were aware of the interior "Pilgrim" order, it would explain Blake's own usage of Moravian-style sexual imagery....
Since his student days, Swedenborg had access to rare instruction in heterodox Jewish mysticism, which included the more erotic and visionary theories of the Shabbeteans, secret disiciples of Sabbatai Zevi.
Swedenborg sought out Jewish Kabbalists in the East End, and soon met Dr. Samuel Jacob Falk, known as the "Baal Shem" of London. Falk was a crypto-Shabbetean, who collaborated with a network of fellow "Zoharites" in England, Holland, Poland, and Germany.
Following the Shabbeteans' example, some members of the network pretended conversion to Christianity and assimilated Kabbalistic notions of the Shekhinah into Christian notions of the Virgin Mary.