First published in 1974, Allen Roberts’ “The Craft and Its Symbols” is an excellent guide to the symbology of the Freemasons. Appropriate for the Mason and non-mason alike, this classic volume takes the reader through the meanings behind the symbols and the connections they have with the everyday lives of the members of this ancient fraternity. It is an excellent resource for the beginning Mason or a non-mason who would like to better understand the concepts of this fraternal organization as they are divulged by the symbols.
Are Freemasons really the spiritual and intellectual descendents of the mysterious 13th and 14th century self-styled guardians of the Holy Land known as the Knights Templar? In their 1988 book The Temple and the Lodge, authors Michael Baigent and Richard Leigh answer this question with a forceful, “Yes!” Baigent and Leigh go on to posit that the philosophy of the Knight Templars had a huge influence on America’s founding fathers, many of whom were active members of Masonic lodges, as well as on the development of the economic theory of capitalism and the French Enlightenment.
For people who are curious to learn just what Masonry is all about, one good resource is “History and Symbolism of Royal Arch Masonry,” which is written by Edward R. Graham with forward by Marion K. Crum and Dennis J. Anness. Published in 2001, the book explores many elements of Royal Arch Masonry, particularly the significance of its symbols and its connection to other branches of Masonry.
“Solomon’s Builders: Freemasons, Founding Fathers and the Secrets of Washington D.C.” is Christopher L Hodapp’s revealing look at the birth of the United States and the influence of the Masons. Skillfully separating fact from myth, Hodapp looks at the evidence that this new nation, based on radical ideas of freedom and personal responsibility, was based on the democratic principles inherent in the lodges of the Masons. He deftly tells the story and uncovers the evidence that the Masons left in plain sight throughout the capital city.