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Topic: So Mote It Be!

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So Mote It Be!




The Masonic Oath of So Mote It Be perfectly embraces the ancient Egyptian Philosophy of Ma'at which is the Divine Creative Will and assuredly gave the name to that phrase and is pictured for us in the two Masonic Songs on opening and closing a Lodge.  Egyptian Hieroglyphic reading is not carved in stone, so to speak, and there is not a concensus on how this word was actually pronounced - its the tamato tamahto thing.


Bill Manley in his book Egyptian Heiroglyphs for Complete Beginners page 57 has this to say about Ma'at : 'True of Voice' is commonly written after a name to suggest that the deceased thought and spoke in accordance with the principle of Ma'at according to which this world comes about through the will of the Creator and has meaning and purpose.  Therefore, to think and speak according to Ma'at is to be in harmony with the Creator's Intention.


Wiki has this to say :  Maat or ma'at also spelled māt or mayet, was the ancient Egyptian concept of truth, balance, order, law, morality and justice.   From an early period the King would describe himself as the "Lord of Maat" who decreed with his mouth the Maat he conceived in his heart.  The significance of Maat developed to the point that it embraced all aspects of existence, including the basic equilibrium of the universe, the relationship between constituent parts, the cycle of the seasons, heavenly movements, religious observations and fair dealings, honesty and truthfulness in social interactions.  The ancient Egyptians had a deep conviction of an underlying holiness and unity within the universe. Cosmic harmony was achieved by correct public and ritual life. Any disturbance in cosmic harmony could have consequences for the individual as well as the state.  To the Egyptian mind, Maat bound all things together in an indestructible unity: the universe, the natural world, the state, and the individual were all seen as parts of the wider order generated by Maat.  The the Vizier responsible for justice was called the Priest of Maat and in later periods judges wore images of Maat.


Thus, everything that the Egyptians did, they did according to the Will of the Creator and this is exactly what you have displayed in Masonry where everything they do is in accordance with the Divine Creative Will summed up in the Masonic Oath of So Mote It Be which we can see this clearly displayed in those two songs on Opening and Closing a Lodge.  These are defining charachteristics of both cultures and thus it is obvious that the concept of Egyptian Ma'at gave its name to the Masonic Oath.


Opening Ode

Hail Eternal by whose aid

All created things were made

Heaven and Earth Thy vast design

Hear us oh Architect Divine

May our work begun in Thee

Ever blest with order be

And may we when labours cease

Part in harmony and peace

By They Glorious Majesty

By the trust we place in Thee

By the badge and mystic sign

Hear us oh Architect Divine!

So Mote It Be!


Closing Ode


Now the evening shadows closing

Warn from toil to peaceful rest

Mystic arts and rights reposing

Sacred in each faithful breast

God of Light whose love unceasing

Doth to all They works extend

Crown our Order with Thy blessing

Build, sustain us to the end

Humbly now we bow before Thee

Grateful for They aid Divine

Everlasting power and glory

Mighty Architect be Thine.

So Mote It Be!


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