Beyond Babel


Dear reader in the appropriate form of salutation!

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. […]All things were made by him; and without him was not anything made that was made.”

The prologue of the Gospel of John, one of the sacred books of Freemasonry, on the one hand identifies Jesus with the divine Logos, while on the other hand testifies his humanity.

All that Jesus says and does is the word of the One who is the eternal Word, it is a sign that refers to the Incarnation of the Word in the Christ made man.

It is no coincidence that in Hebrew the word “dabar” indicates at the same time “word” and “act”, “event”: it is the word that realizes itself and becomes reality. Like in “God said: ‘Let there be light’ and there was light “: the divine word expresses the Creator’s work, it is a creative word, a word that becomes an act at the very moment in which it is spoken.

The concept of the generating Word or Sound, capable of creating ex nihilo, can also be found in other cultures: for example, the word “Abracadabra” comes from the Aramaic “Avrah Kadabra” which means “I will create what I say”, “I will create as I speak”.

In the Hindu religion, which derives from Brahmanism and from the sacred texts of the Vedas, we discover the syllable, or rather the sound “Om“, which is the most sacred mantra and represents the synthesis and the essence of every mantra, ritual, sacred text or aspect of the Divine.

The Om is considered as the primordial sound that gave rise to creation, a creation that is interpreted as the very manifestation of this sound. From the Oṃ comes the sacred knowledge, the triple one: Oṃ is the Brahman, Oṃ is the whole universe.

Pythagoras stated that “God geometrizes” and that “the Geometry of forms is solidified music”, as if sound could generate sonic forms and structure matter: as if matter was a solidified sonic form.

Logos is therefore the creative word, which becomes flesh in Christ; but even before that, in the Hebrew-Christian cosmogony, handed down in the Book of Genesis, the Logos is incarnated in the final result of Creation: Man.

The creation of Adam and Eve “in the image and likeness of God”, the stay in the Earthly Paradise and the subsequent banish from Eden represent in fact the first great myth of separation.

According to all traditions of mankind, in a veiled or explicit form, the present human condition of suffering and degradation is the result of a cosmic drama: the drama of the intellectual darkening of the Spiritual Man, the Adam Qadmon of the Jewish Kabbalah, the Universal Man of the Islamic esotericism, who is, at the origin, the free lord of creation. It is what the Christian exoteric tradition describes as the “original sin”, the disobedience.

The separation comes in fact from an act of disobedience: Adam eats the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, disobeying God who had forbidden him, since the knowledge of good and evil would have de facto made him equal to Him.

But this act of disobedience can also be seen as an extreme act of courage in the search for the Truth, perhaps the first of a long series of actions that have characterized the path of Man, driven out of Paradise and forced to live on Earth: a path that, as we will see, has no other purpose than the constant search for the Truth and the return to the undivided One.

Man still has a divine spark of light that makes him capable of receiving the Logos, of understanding, or better, perceiving the message that allows him to regain consciousness of his deep luminous nature and restore his original state as a free and undivided Spiritual Man.

And so we come to the second myth of separation, fundamental to the path of Humanity, represented by the Tower of Babel: before Babel, the myth tells us, all men on Earth spoke one language and used the same words.

Myth has it that people emigrated from the East to a plain in the village of Sennaar and settled there; they decided to build a city and a tower to reach heavens, so to make a name for themselves and not disperse across the Earth.

But once again God intervened and confused their language, making people no longer understand each other: God wanted them scattered all through the Earth.

In this myth we find again the theme of division, as if He, after entrapping mankind on Earth, wanted to prevent it from reunite (religio, in Latin) with the Almighty: the building of the Tower is nothing more than Man’s attempt to “aspire to Heaven” already during his earthly life or, in other words, to compare himself with God.

It is worth remembering that the Tower of Babel is called Etemenanki in Sumerian, whose original meaning is “home to the foundations of Heaven and Earth” or even “cornerstone of Heaven and Earth”.

In an interpretation more consistent with the vision Freemasonry, we could say that the God described in the Bible punishes mankind, dispersing them at the four corners of the Earth, because they tried to lay the cornerstone of the Tower, or Temple, intended to reunite Earth and Heaven.

The fall of Eden and the diaspora after Babel are therefore two fundamental myths of separation told by the sacred texts, which share an allegorical meaning of punishment for an act of disobedience: the Man who wants to be like God, or maybe I would say the Man who wants to be reunited with God, who wants to find the Divine within himself.

Both actually, of course remaining within the myth and without any Theosophical and Religious observation, are harbingers of extraordinary effects: from the fall of Adam and Eve on Earth Humanity is born, while from the diaspora of Babel are born languages, cultures, ethnic groups, nations. A path of separation, therefore, that is not only necessary, but which gave rise to one of the greatest riches of Humanity: the diversity, the multiplicity.

As always happens, while on the one hand starts a path of division, differentiation, individualisation begins, on the other hand a much more complex and longer path of reunification begins, returning from the many to the One.

Over time, the Profane Society has often tried to artificially create universal languages, that is, languages capable of being understood by all beyond the linguistic barriers. For example, we can mention money: it has its own universal language, a set of precise rules shared at global level that allow all the currencies of the world to speak to each other, in all countries of the world, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Similarly, after the failure of Esperanto, the Profane Society elected the English language as the de facto standard language worldwide: although it is not the most widespread in the world, only third after Mandarin Chinese and Spanish, it is certainly the most functional language for this purpose. First of all because it is the reference language of the global hegemonic economic model, of American and Anglo-Saxon roots, and then because it is a simple language or, to be more precise, a one that is difficult to speak well but that is easy to speak in a simplified way.

And so it is perfectly fit for this purpose.

In a nutshell, the Profane Society has chosen as universal languages those that have the structure of a protocol: systems of shared rules, commonly adopted by all, that allow people, but better still machines, to communicate with each other.

Here is the point: the universal languages of the Profane Society are instrumental. They are not born to help men to better understand each other, to communicate thoughts, feelings and emotions. They do not aim at dialogue, mutual understanding, empathy, and therefore at uniting men and make them all become more equal, free and ultimately Brothers.

On the contrary, they have been designed with the sole purpose of exchanging information, necessary to the Profane world to work according to the models, the rules and above all the limits imposed by the dominant economic models that have succeeded over time.

This is the reason and the limit for the failure of the profane universal languages: not being able to go into the depths of the human soul to catch and communicate the essence, which doesn’t resides in the mind’s language but in the spirit’s one.

However, there are some universal languages that succeed in this purpose: for example the Music, as we all experienced in person last night. The Music expresses itself in a language that overcomes the distinctions of language, culture, nation: it is said that Jazz music came to life in the hovels of New Orleans because there people spoke five different languages and could not understand each other, and the only way to communicate was the Jazz.

Music knows how to reach everyone through paths that are still partly unknown to us, but that go through our deep essence, through what we really are, beyond any superstructure: Music is the wire that sews the mind to the heart.

Even the body language is a universal one, especially its highest expression represented by sexuality. A holy sexuality, which identifies in the sexual rite a source of energy, as in Tantric rituals that use this energy to “merge” the dual into the one, or a rediscovery of the creative, regenerative and transformative power of the sexual act such as in the Cult of the Great Mother, who linked sexual rites to the fertility rites of Mother Earth.

It is not by chance if the Profane Society over time demonized and commodified the sexual act, so to make men lose contact with the divine part that the holy sexuality allows us to rediscover.

And then there is the language of actions. An action is much more difficult to misunderstand: while a speech can be exploited, and even the translation of one’s thought from a language to another can betray the original meaning, an action speaks for itself without the need for decoding, thus revealing in the gesture both the intent and the recipient and, finally, the way.

As we have already said, when the word becomes an act, everything becomes clear, everything becomes light.

I would like to stop for a minute, in this path, addressing a thought to all those actions that with their clarity of purpose illuminate as Pure Light our lives, as actions with the power to sweep the shadows of doubt and show the world what is often invisible.

I would like our thought to go to all the Brothers who, at the cost of the extreme sacrifice, driven by the sense of duty and supported by the courage that, if is rare among men, it is not among the F˙. M.˙., give their lives to save the innocents; I would like our thought, for a minute, ** if the Orient agrees **, to go today to Brother Arnaud Beltrame of R.˙.L.˙. Jerome Bonaparte at the Orient of Rueil-Nanterre, France.

And, of fundamental importance for us F.˙. M.˙., there is the language of symbols: a language well known by us, since everything in our Brotherhood is symbolic, everything is made of symbols: we use symbols and ritual gestures to recognize each other “from the signs we show”, and even more to communicate with each other.

Symbols originated from something that has been divided to be reassembled. Sometimes, however, a symbol manifests itself apparently in its entirety, so why do we call it a symbol?

Because the key of decoding, that is the other part of the code, the unknown part, is in the wisdom of the F.˙. M.˙. who has been initiated and then instructed to recognize the symbol. A part of the symbol is what one has, that is what is visible; the other part is something that one knows, or better that one recognizes.

The ritual itself, along the three degrees of Blue Freemasonry, is an acted symbol: we are experiencing it today because our ritual is made up of gestures, sounds, rhythm even more than words. We all, who today are together in this symbolic place in itself, we are already going beyond Babel because the ritual we practice is an acted symbol and transcends the languages in which it is expressed.

So what is the path the F.˙. M.. must walk in his initiatory experience to go beyond Babel? What is the path that will lead men to recognize themselves as Brothers, all belonging to the same Family, to the same Humanity, to the same Us who can finally overcome individualization and go beyond the Ego?

We have already seen that universal languages of the Profane Society can not achieve this goal: they have been designed according to rational logic, but rational knowledge is divisive, because it works by analysis, and therefore every attempt to look for the unity with the sole force of reason is destined to fail.

On the contrary, intuitive knowledge is unifying, because it reasons by synthesis: therefore the esoteric path that overcomes the Ego, the separation, the Babel of men must necessarily pass through the Us, the awareness of belonging to the same Humanity, to the same family of Brothers, to finally find ourselves in the undivided One.

To depose, to oil ourselves, to take away: as the initiate learns to remove from the rough stone to turn it into polished stone and then into cubic stone, as the sculptor takes away from the stone to let the statue hidden inside to come out, then all us F.˙. M.˙. must be sculptors of ourselves. By learning to remove all that is superstructure to access what is essence, we will be able to go down a step, from what is language to what is meta-language: the symbol.

All us F.˙. M.˙., initiated and instructed to the Royal Art, have as primary mission the search for the “Lost Word”, and to re-create again the Adamic state, resurrecting after an initiatory death as our Master-Symbol Hiram Abiff: thus, by emulating Hiram, builder of the Temple of Jerusalem, we can rebuild the seat of the Light and our inner Temple inside our bodies.

The lost word is the power to create: the very moment in which humanity has been separated from God, the true meaning of the Word has been lost. What if the Lost Word was nothing else than the creator Logos?

So here we find again the message of the Gospel of John from which we started: the Logos became man, the divine creator power and his creature find themselves and recognize each other as a whole. The discovery of the “Lost Word” means to rediscover oneself and the true Divine nature in man, that is, to become aware that God and the man share the same essence.

We come full circle: in our esoteric journey of reuniting our human essence with our divine essence, the symbol reunites, allowing us to be divinely human.

We are scraps. Once we were part of the Whole and then we were separated from it. But every F.˙. M.˙. knows he is also a symbol himself, since his destiny is to be reunited with the Whole from which he comes and who we call G.˙.A.˙.O.˙.T.˙.U.˙.

In this return to the Whole, that is the search for the Lost Word, the destiny of the F.˙.M.˙. is fulfilled: we can go beyond Babel, overcome the differences in language, culture, ethnicity, go beyond the original separation and rediscover the power to understand ourselves beyond languages when we will “gather together”, we will reunite what is scattered, we will fully recognize our divine essence and finally we will find the Lost Word.

So said I…

B∴ E∴ C∴