Details subject to change.
In his presentation, The Astrology of Freemasonry, Jaime Paul Lamb interprets the ritual and symbolism of Blue Lodge and Royal Arch Freemasonry, as well as that of the Masonic Rosicrucian Society, from the perspective of Western Astrology. Highlighting such features as the Anno Lucis, the Brazen Pillars, planetary archetypes in the officer's roles, and the High Priest's breastplate, Lamb unpacks their astrological significance while illustrating a history of this manner of inquiry stretching back to the very beginnings of the speculative Craft. This presentation culminates in a delineation of the inception chart for June 24th, 1717, which Lamb presents as a textbook example of an astrological election.
Jaime Paul Lamb is the author of Myth, Magick & Masonry: Occult Perspectives in Freemasonry (The Laudable Pursuit, 2018) and Approaching the Middle Chamber: The Seven Liberal Arts in Freemasonry and the Western Esoteric Tradition (The Laudable Pursuit, 2020). He is a member of Old Well-Saint John’s Lodge no. 6, F.&A.M. (Mother Lodge), Norwalk, CT, a charter member and Worshipful Master of Ascension Lodge no. 89, F.&A.M., Phoenix, AZ for the year 2021, a Frater of both the Arizona College of the Societas Rosicruciana in Civitatibus Foederatis and the Hermetic Society of the G∴D∴, and is a Past Master of Arizona Research Lodge no. 1 for the year 2016.
From the late 1700s in the wake of the French and American revolutions, to the current day, some people have been drawn to conspiracy theories as the motive force in history. Today, with the rise of social media and its capacity to proliferate an unparalleled volume of disinformation and misinformation, academic researchers in the fields of political science, public policy, digital communications, and other disciplines caution that conspiracism is emerging as an increasingly dominant worldview through which people seek to democratize the production of bias re-enforcing knowledge. This form of communicative action and performance creates order out of chaos by identifying perceived connections in random patterns, aided by a firm believe in agents unseen shaping world affairs. From 9/11 to the Obama "birther conspiracy" to the popularization of the Flat Earth Theory, to the spread of anti-vaccination paranoias, individual conspiracies have been braided together over time into totalizing "Conspiracies of everything" like QAnon, which has been implicated as a central organizing narrative for the January 6th Capital Insurrection. While this is nothing new, it is currently at a fever pitch.
RW Bro. Wes Regan is a PhD student at the University of British Columbia researching the current growth phase of conspiracism through digital communications and its impact on deliberative democracy and public planning. Incorporating elements of his dissertation literature review, in this presentation RW Bro. Regan explores some of the earliest conspiracy theories implicating Freemasonry alongside and within other narratives of anti-Semitic, anti-Illuminist, anti-Jacobite conspiracy theories, and traces them into modern times where many have been repackaged and rebranded. The presentation draws on the works of political historian Richard Hofstadter (The Paranoid Style in American Politics, 1963), Michael Barkun (A Culture of Conspiracy: Apocalyptic Visions in Contemporary America, 2003), Egil Asprem (The Problem of Disenchantment: Scientific Naturalism and Esoteric Discourse, 1900-1939, 2014), Russell Muirhead and Nancy Rosenblum (A Lot of People Are Saying: The New Conspiracism and the Assault on Democracy, 2019) Thomas Milan Konda (Conspiracies of Conspiracies: How Delusions Have Overrun America, 2019) as well as the newly released 2021 examination of the QAnon phenomenon from journalist Mike Rothschild (The Storm is Upon Us: How QAnon Became a Movement, Cult, And Conspiracy Theory of Everything, 2021) along with other academic articles and news stories.
Why should Freemasons and Freemasonry care about this today? With Masonic buildings across North America being increasingly attacked by conspiracist vandals and arsonists, people who believe these things driving thousands of kilometres with intent to kill elected officials, and other openly paranoid conspiracists campaigning on disinformation even winning seats in the halls of power, Bro. Regan hopes to convince you that this is no laughing matter and something we need to keep a close eye on. For the sake of Freemasonry, but also for the sake of a tolerant liberal democratic society and functioning democracy.
Join us for an educational lecture as we examine what the ancient Sanskrit Vedic scriptures foretell about the cycles of human history and what it means for our modern age. We then will explore the universal concept of the Holy Land found throughout many cultures around the world and look at Freemasonry’s own construct of this idea as represented by the Temple of King Solomon.