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John Sebastian Marlowe Ward - The Master Masons Handbook (322.0 Kb)

Cover of John Sebastian Marlowe Ward's Book The Master Masons HandbookBook downloads: 131
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THE third degree in Freemasonry is termed the Sublime Degree and the title is truly justified. Even in its exoteric aspect its simple, yet dramatic, power must leave a lasting impression on the mind of every Candidate its esoteric meaning contains some of the most profound spiritual instruction which it is possible to obtain to-day.As in my previous books, I freely confess that I have not covered the whole ground. Not only would it be impossible to do so in a book of this size, but in so doing I should have defeated one of m... More >>>
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Category 1:  Freemasons and Masonry
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Author:      John Sebastian Marlowe Ward
Format:      eBook
THE third degree in Freemasonry is termed the Sublime Degree and the title is truly justified. Even in its exoteric aspect its simple, yet dramatic, power must leave a lasting impression on the mind of every Candidate its esoteric meaning contains some of the most profound spiritual instruction which it is possible to obtain to-day.

As in my previous books, I freely confess that I have not covered the whole ground. Not only would it be impossible to do so in a book of this size, but in so doing I should have defeated one of my principal objects in writing namely, to

inspire others to study for themselves and endeavor to find in our ceremonies further and deeper meanings.

The success of the earlier books shows clearly that my efforts have not been in vain, and that the brethren are more than anxious to fathom the inner meaning of the ceremonies we all love so well. This book completes the series dealing

with the meaning of the three craft degrees, but their popularity has convinced me that the experiment of producing a small and inexpensive handbook has been completely justified. I have therefore been encouraged to write further

volumes, and the next of the series will be an outline history of Freemasonry " from time Immemorial."

The success of the first edition of this book has necessitated a second wherein I have corrected a few printing errors and added a few points which may help my brother students.

From the number of letters I have received from all parts of the world, thanking me for the light these books throw on the meaning of our ceremonies, it is clear that the new members who are entering our Order are tending to take an

increasing interest in the meaning of our Rites and are no longer content to regard the Ceremonies merely as a pastime for an idle hour.

About Author:

John Sebastian Marlowe Ward was born on 22nd December 1885 in what is now known as Belize City, British Honduras and died on July 2nd, 1949 near Limassol Cyprus.

His father, the Reverend Herbert M. Ward was an Anglican priest serving the English community in British Honduras, when his first son, John, was born, but was recalled to England late in 1888, after which he took up a new post as curate of St Mary's Church, London. John and his younger brother Reginald, grew up in London where the boys attended the Merchant Taylor's School. The brothers were close and within the family John was always known as "Jack" and Reginald as "Rex". In this article, however, we will continue to call John Ward, "John", the name by which he was known to the world.

John had extremely poor eyesight and wore thick glasses from a very young age, but he was bright and went on to Trinity College Cambridge. There at the age of nineteen, he married his second cousin Caroline Lanchester who was several years older than he and by whom he had a daughter, Blanche. He graduated with honours from Cambridge in 1908, majoring in History, and his first book, a short history of "Brasses" was published at about the same time. He commenced work as a teacher and also began to write about History and Freemasonry, in which he had always been interested.

Over the next twenty years he was to produce a large number of books on the history and spiritual meanings of Freemasonry. He also wrote for various journals and became a contributor to the Encyclopaedia Britannica on several subjects, and remained listed as such till long after his death.

His Masonic books discuss not only the Western forms of Freemasonry, but various other similar secret societies both past and present in different parts of the world. Most of these books are still in print and many are still regarded as authoritative by modern Freemasons almost a century after they were first written. There are literally hundreds of references to J.S.M. Ward and his Masonic books on the internet.

John Ward's career as a Freemason was an illustrious one, but it was merely a passing phase in the journey of his life. He had always been interested in many other subjects, particularly history, religion and science, but a completely new dimension was added to his researches early in 1914. On 5th January 1914 his uncle and grand father-in-law, Herbert J. Lanchester died unexpectedly and a week later John had a dream that was to introduce him to the then "way-out" world of spiritualism.

In 1918, John Ward obtained employment with the Federation of British Industry and remained with them until 1930, by which time he had become head of the Intelligence Department - that is to say that he was responsible for assessing business opportunities around the world and making recommendations to British Investors. As the Great Depression, was then wracking the land, no one could understand why he resigned in 1930, but to him there was a very good reason.

They married soon after and still in 1927, John gave a series of lectures, in which he explained his discoveries and his new calling. From those who came to listen he gained a few followers and the whole group pooled its resources. They purchased a large house in Barnet on the outskirts of London and then built a church on the property, which was also adorned with many antiques and works of art. In 1930, John Ward resigned from his job at the Federation of British Industry and with the help of his community established the country's first Folk Park.

Ward died peacefully in his sleep on July 2nd 1949. Feeling a little unwell, he had taken a nap after lunch and could not be awakened at about 2. 30 p.m. The closest doctor, Dr. Frangos, summoned from Limassol, determined that he had died of a heart attack brought on by high blood pressure. Jessie Ward was later told that death and been caused by the rupture of a large blood vessel in the head (a stroke).

Since that time he has continued to watch over and guide his successors, and through his writings even those who have no real interest in him as a person, have been able to draw closer to the Goal of all our striving. This website is just one more stage in bringing his message to the world. May he himself continue to watch over it and all who read it.