Roman author, born at Madaura in northern Africa about 125 to 130 A.D. Well educated, widely traveled, he became notable as lecturer and advocate at Rome and Carthage.
Accused of Witchcraft by the relatives of a rich widow he had married, he made a spirited and entertaining defense that is still in existence, and tells us something of his life. His chief work, the Metamorphoses or Golden Ass, tells of the adventures of the hero in the form of an ass but who is restored to human shape by the goddess Isis, his initiation into the Mysteriesais described and his progress in the priesthood discussed; he became a provincial priest, collected the temple funds and administered them. The works of Apuleius are valuable for the light they throw upon ancient manners and references to them during the centuries by Saint Augustine and others show the interest this writer excited in his studies of religion, philosophy and magic.
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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