So far we’ve read through and learnt the First Degree Ceremony twice. Both of these times were learning, but now we’re moving onto the revision stage. I’m not expecting you to be word perfect at the start of this session, and nor am I expecting it at the end!
We’re going to revise what we last covered on Day 32, so it’s…
Revising Masonic Ritual, Day 37 of 100: First Degree Ceremony (up to the Obligation)
We’ll start the ceremony by Opening the Lodge (pages 42-46 in my book of Emulation Ritual), then going through the First Degree ceremony up to the Obligation (pages 69-80). When we first started learning this it was broken up over four days:
- Day 18 – Opening the Lodge in the First Degree and Candidate Enters
- Day 19 – Perambulations
- Day 20 – Declarations
- Day 21 – Pre-Obligation
Today we’re going to try and go through this without looking at the book, well, at least not until to you need it. However, don’t ignore the book completely and ensure you check to ensure you what you’ve learnt it correct.
I recommend using a piece of paper to cover the book and reveal the text once you have worked your way through it.
You aren’t expected to know all of this at this stage! When you get to a point that you are stuck of pause and think about it. Don’t rush yourself. If you are still stuck slide the paper down and reveal the first line to prompt yourself. No doubt there’ll be occasions when you kick yourself for not remember, and hopefully not too many where the line still doesn’t prompt you to continue.
I’ve said it before, but I personally and still get stuck on the questions for the Declarations. Although I needed more than just a prompt, fortunately the lines didn’t look like they were completely new to me so it shows that my brain has absorbed them, just that more work it needed.
Highlighting these areas that need additional work are a positive. Don’t be disheartened if you have areas you are struggling with. It’s better reveal them now, rather than in the days leading up to the actual ceremony.
The benefit of working through a structured system like this ensures that we spot any weak areas now. If, as some sources recommend, you focus on the big parts, you can easily let the smaller bits fall through the gaps.
As I said, don’t feel like you have to be completely word perfect by the end of the session, and don’t feel like you need to say it perfectly. You’ll have bits were you can rattle through quickly, and other bits you don’t.