Yet this degree, like the two which preceded it, presents its many lessons rapidly, and at times almost casually, as if in passing. For the scope of Freemasonry is so great that the teachings of each degree could not be fully expounded or comprehended in many, many evenings. In fact, a number of Masonic scholars and authorities have devoted much of their adult lives to the study of Masonry, and have felt that such a lifetime afforded them only a beginning in their work.
You will find that this degree, and more especially the second section, is more dramatic than the first two degrees. In the Master Mason degree you will see the symbols of some of the most soul searching questions ever asked by the philosophers and wise men down through the ages. Our beliefs in the importance of the Supreme Being, in eternal life, in piety, fidelity, moral conduct, and faithfulness, are dramatically stated in a ceremony so beautiful that you will remember it for the rest of your lives.
A legend exclusive to Masonry will be presented. While this particular legend is found only in speculative Masonry, it has its counterpart in some form in the legends and folklore of practically every people of the world. Always — this legend takes a similar form — death by treachery, a search and discovery, resurrection, and reward. Its origins in Masonry are unknown, as it predates any written history about our fraternity. And the message is absolutely timeless.
As in the other degrees, you are encouraged to pay close attention to not only the orations and activities that take place, but also to the many and varied symbols which are presented. As before, many will be explained. But the enormous scope of the symbolism cannot be absorbed in so short a time as the duration of this degree. It may be many years before you will be satisfied that you have seen and understand all of the symbols in the degrees. And only then will you realize that a lifetime of study can merely scratch the surface of the wonderful body of knowledge and lore that is contained in the first three degrees of Ancient Craft Masonry.