Small Square & Compass

File: Wisdom, Strength and Beauty
Author: John Lee Krom
Date: December 17, 1994

Entered into electronic form by Bro. Kenneth Ottinger,
March, 1996

Wisdom, Strength and Beauty

A Research Paper


John Lee Krom

December 17, 1994


Wisdom, Strength and Beauty

From the moment we first stood in the northeast corner of the
lodge as entered apprentice masons, we have been taught that it is
necessary that there should be "wisdom to contrive, strength to support
and beauty to adorn all great and important undertakings." These are the
three great supports of masonry.

We know that wisdom represents the East and the Master of the
Lodge and is symbolized by the Doric* column as it combines the beauty
of the Corinthian with the strength of the Doric. Solomon is represented
in speculative masonry as the type, or representative of wisdom due to the
character given him in the First Book of Kings (chapter four, verses 30
through 32). "Solomon's wisdom excelled the wisdom of all the children of the
east country and all the wisdom of Egypt, for he was wiser than all men;
than Ethan the Ezrahite and Heman and Chacol and Darda, the sons of Mahol
and his fame was in all the nations round about."

Strength is represented in the symbolic lodge by the Senior Warden
and the Doric column as it is the most massive column in all the orders of
architecture. Hiram of Tyre becomes the Archetype for strength because of
the assistance he rendered by providing the men and materials needed for
constructing the temple.

Beauty we are told is represented by the Junior Warden as he
symbolizes the meridian sun, "the most beautiful object in the heavens",
and by the Corinthian column as it is the most beautiful of the ancient
orders of architecture. The archetype becomes Hiram Abiff, the widow's
son, due to the great debt owed him for his skill in decorating the

The understanding of the three great supports of masonry is
essential to the lectures of the symbolic lodge and is repeated in each of
the degrees. This repetition is done to impress upon us the importance of
these attributes, but is there a deeper meaning?

We can extrapolate from our experience that in a "Blue Lodge" the
Master, Senior and Junior Wardens are the triumvirate powers that must
always be present to operate the lodge and that the Master "thinks", the
Senior Warden "acts" and the Junior Warden "keeps the peace and harmony".

These duties are spelled out in the powers given each of the
officers by the constitutions and by-laws of the Grand Lodge and whereby
the Master is the undisputed ruler of His lodge and subject only to
masonic rules and regulations and the Grand Master or Grand Lodge, and he
rules and governs with absolute authority reflecting the wisdom which
shines from the "volume of Sacred Law" placed upon the masonic alter.

The Junior Warden takes charge of the Craft during refreshments
and during masonic trials where he acts as the lodge prosecutor. He
governs the festivities of the lodge when it is free from labor so that the
preservation of harmony and order may be secured, thus creating the beauty
of the masonic society.

The jewels worn by the principal officers in the lodge and their
stations in the lodge illustrate wisdom, strength and beauty. The square
of morality in the east, the level of equality in the in the west and the
plumb of rectitude in the south, denote the close relationships of this
triangle of leadership. However if we again look more closely we find even
more of the mystery unfolds.

The ancients who began this system knew that the strongest
structural design was based in the triangle. It has the greatest of
strength due to the sum of its three sides. They were also deeply aware of
its mystical powers from the number three.

By placing this perspective in our symbolic lodge, we see the
Master, Senior and Junior Wardens as one units; each supported by the
others in their respective duties. It is essential that they react and
interact with each other constantly as friends and brothers linked
together by their commitment to the lodge and their offices. They are not
separate, but a trinity of leadership and this brings us to the final
esoteric understanding of wisdom, strength and beauty, for if we search
the words themselves we see a pattern form which is quite unexpected and
uniquely spiritual.

The Hebrew word DABAR means wisdom, the Hebrew word OZ means strength and
the Hebrew word GOMOR means beauty.

The Hebrews gave great significance not only to their words but
also to the letters that formed them.

If we take the first letter of each of the former words we find
that the Hebrew letter "D" in DABAR, corresponding to the fourth letter of
the western alphabet, is {Hebrew letter graphic of the letter
Dalet} signifying the door of life. The representation of this in it's
original hieroglyph was probably {graphic of a simple rectangle, as a door
frame} and typified by the Greeks as the opening of a tent in the DELTA
illustration {graphic of the letter DELTA}.

The letter "O" from OZ corresponds with the fifteenth letter of
the {western} alphabet and was called by the Hebrews and the Phoenicians
"AYN", that is "eye" and was illustrated in the primitive form of the
Phoenician letter as a rough picture of an eye or a circle with a dot in
the center. The Hebrew letter {graphic of the Hebrew letter Ayin}
represents "O" and is the hieroglyph of a plant (one might conjecture a
sprig of acacia, owing to its abundance in that area.) as well as at
times, the circle of an eye.

The letter "G" in the Hebrew word GOMER corresponds to the 7th
letter of {our western} alphabet and is associated with the third sacred
name of God in Hebrew, "GHADOL" or in Latin, "magnus" or mighty.

If we take the words Wisdom, Strength and Beauty in Hebrew and use
the first letter of each we have:

D = DABAR = Wisdom
O = OZ = Strength
G = Gomer = Beauty

If we look closely we can see how "masonry conceals her secrets
from those not yet ready to receive them" for by reversing the order of
the letters we find the name of the Supreme Architect of the Universe.

It is a "singular coincidence and worthy of thought" that this
should occur and "presents almost the reason that can reconcile a
Freemason to use the initial "G" in it's conspicuous suspension in the
East of the lodge.

We have now unearthed the true understanding that the metaphorical
supports of Freemasonry, represented by the Hebrew letters signifying the
"three names of God", the "all seeing eye" or evergreen sprig (sprig of
acacia, if you will) and the "door to life" is in reality the Deity
Himself and to truly succeed in our labors in the lodge and also when in
the world we must have His wisdom to contrive, His strength to support us
and His beauty to enable us to adorn all great and important undertakings.

{Note: Attached to the original is an enlargement of the Hebrew letters
of the letters and words cited in this paper.}


End of Wisdom, Strength and Beauty.