Although the Old Charges, approved in 1722, use the word admitted as applicable to those who are initiated into the mysteries of Freemasonry, yet the General Regulations of 1721 employ the term admission in a sense different from that of initiation. By the word making they imply the reception of a profane into the Order, but by admission they designate the election of a Freemason into a Lodge. Thus we find such expressions as these clearly indicating a difference in the meaning of the two words. In Regulation v-"No man can be made or admitted a member of a particular Lodge." In Regulation vi-"But no man can be entered a Brother in any particular Lodge, or admitted to be a member thereof." And more distinctly in Regulation viii-"No set or number of Brethren shall withdraw or separate themselves from the Lodge in which they were made Brethren or were afterwards admitted members." This distinction has not always been rigidly preserved by recent writers; but it is evident that, correctly speaking, we should always say of a profane who has been initiated that he has been made a Freemason, and of a Freemason who has been affiliated with a Lodge, that he has been admitted a member. The true definition of admission is, then, the reception of an unaffiliated Brother into membership (see Affiliated Freemason).
The Encyclopedia Masonica exists to preserve the wealth of information that has been generated over the centuries by numerous Masonic authors. As Freemasonry is now Speculative and not Operative, the work of a Mason is now conducted in the quarries of symbolism, literature, history and scholasticism. Freemasonry encourages intellectual exploration and academic achievement in its members and many Masons over the years have taken up this calling. The result has been that an incredible amount of philosophy, symbolic speculation and academic insights have been created. However, as Freemasonry teaches, human knowledge is frail and fragile. It is easily lost in the turnings of the ages and unforeseen catastrophes can result in great setbacks to human knowledge.
For too long these great works have sat on forgotten shelves, gathering dust and concealing the light that could be shed on the darkness of our ignorance. The Encyclopedia Masonica has been created to act as an ark, sailing through time, to ensure that future generations of Freemasons have access to the same knowledge that inspired the Brethren that came before them. It will contain the works of such Masonic Luminaries as Albert G. Mackey, Manly Palmer Hall, G.S.M. Ward, Albert Pike and many others. The Encyclopedia Masonica is a living work and the volunteers of Universal Co-Masonry will continue to labor until the most comprehensive Masonic reference work the world has ever seen has been created. The Encyclopedia Masonica is open to any who wish to use it and will remain open so that the treasures contained within may increase the wealth of all those who seek its wisdom.
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