The almost universal prevalence among the nations of antiquity of some tradition of a long past deluge, gave rise to certain mythological doctrines and religious ceremonies, to which has been given the name of Arkite Worship, which was Very extensively diffused.
The evidence of this is to be found in the neared feeling which was entertained for the sacredness of high mountains, derived, it is supposed, from recollections of an Ararat, and from the presence in all the Mysteries of a basket, chest, or coffer, whose mystical character bore apparently a reference to the ark of Noah.
On the subject. of this Arkite Worship, Jacob Bryant in A New System or an analysis of ancient Mythology, George Stanley Faber in a Dissertation on the Mysteries of the Cabiri, Godfrey Higgins in the Anacalypas, the Abbé Antoine de Banier, and many other writers, have made learned investigations, which may be consulted with advantage by the Masonic archeologist.
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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