mbolHe tripped over it in a small graveyard at the edge of the world; the lost symbol of Masonry. The weather had been superb in a kind of sweltering tropical island way. He had stepped out of the little condo he was staying it and it immediately looked as if he had been running through sprinklers and his clothes took on the appearance of an avocado skin, lightly wrinkled and clinging to the flesh beneath.
The great thing about island life is that you simply pull your shirt off and ride your bike anyway he thought. What was the point of getting bent out of shape about anything? It was the only place on earth that people seemed to drive 20 miles an hour wherever they went regardless of the speed limit when they took the time to drive an actual automobile through the ragtag mixture of strange makemegoes that dominated the streets of Old Town.
On the bicycle then and off to wherever the wind dragged him or the shade made more practical to ride to. It almost called him in a way. The old island cemetery, with its eerie above ground sarcophaguses, seemed to promise adventure and mystery. The collection of tombstones seemed an army of broken promises, sad stories, and lives cut short. The sandy earth below had not held the heavy granite graves and markers in place, the stones leaning this way and that. The burial locations were seemingly picked with a dart, having no rhyme or reason to them.
Surrounded with a giant iron fence, it took a little time, but a pattern did emerge. There were smaller gates once inside, as if the dead would choose not to mingle. A circle and inner circle if you will, a court of rank even among the solemnity of the dead.
The cemetery had been divided. There was a Catholic section, a Jewish section, and a general, sorry you died section it would appear, and three small “Masonic” sections, in that, the areas were not fenced, but signs, plagues, and various forms of decoration made declarations that the Brethren laid to rest in the designated areas had been members of a particular lodge.
He toured them all. The Catholic section had an extraordinary number of saints, crucifixes, and crosses of various shapes and sizes. Lots of rote verse about the toil of life and the rest brought upon by death. The Jewish section had a lot of Davidic seals and stars and multiple Hebraic writings.
The Masonic sections had some of what you might expect. Squares and compasses, a few skulls and crossbones, some double headed eagles, some Templar crosses, and the normal Masonic fare. But as he wondered the different tombs, reading the words of memento left in tribute……
He tripped hard and landed at the foot of a grave. One of the slightly elevated island style graves with a small cement rim around the edge of the grave and gravel filling in the top. A small plague at the head of the grave read, “In Christ Jesus We are Saved,” with a small cross and rose next to it. Then, as he righted himself, the grave adjacent to it had a Star of David in the center and in Hebrew the words, “He was a father, a brother, and a friend.” The grave next to it had an engraving of the Virgin Mary wrapped in a blanket and glowing. The words read, “Into the fold we shall enter once again.”
In a world where people pierce, tattoo, dress, fight, and work so hard to be different. In a world where your race, your lineage, your family name are all reasons for separation. In a world where standing out is more important than standing up, Masons are buried together.
Why is that so important? Because those Brothers attended lodge together in life.
In a world where we build fences to divide the dead, the Lost Symbol of Masonry is found.