Sunday, January 7, 2018

A Brother Asks: Where's the Goat?

A Brother Asks: Coach!  I keep on hearing jokes about goats from my Brothers.  I've  looked high and low and can't find any association with goats in ritual.  Where's the goat?

Coach: Parts of goats are displayed right on top of two officers' staffs[1]?

Brother: Goat parts?

Coach: Yes, goat parts?

Brother: Okay, I'm looking at the insignias used upon all the staffs and I don't see any goat parts.

Coach: Of course you do. 

Brother: No.  I don't see them at all.

Coach: You do.  You just don't recognize them.

Brother: Okay.  I give up.  Which staffs?

Coach: The Stewards'.

Brother: All I see are weird looking squiggly cone shaped things.

Coach: There is a name for them.  Care to hear it?

Brother: Sure.

Coach: They are called, "cornucopias" .

Brother: Cornucopias?

Coach: Yes, cornucopias.

Brother: How are cornucopias parts of goats?

Coach: Great Questions!  If you do a little research, you'll find that a cornucopia is defined one way as "a symbol of plenty consisting of a goat's horn overflowing with flowers, fruit, and corn." 

Brother: Okay, that makes sense.

Coach:  What does?

Brother: The cornucopia...  I remember hearing this word as a youth when I asked what those strange looking things in the Thanksgiving pictures were with all the fruit coming out of them.

Coach: Yes.  Cornucopias are one of many symbols used during this observance.

Brother: Okay.  So you are saying the Steward staffs have goat parts on them.

Coach:  No.  I am pointing out that the Stewards' staffs have a cornucopia upon each of their tops, that a cornucopia is "an ornamental container shaped like a goat's horn", that it is a symbol for "an abundant supply of good things of a specified kind" and that a cornucopia is a goat's horn overflowing with specific good.  This is what I am saying.

Brother: I am beginning to see what you are saying.  Our ritual does indeed allude symbolically to goats through the cornucopia.

Coach: I'm glad that you are seeing it now.

Brother: Are there any other connections?

Coach: I'm impressed.

Brother: Impressed?

Coach: Yes.  I am.

Brother: By what?

Coach: By your further interest.

Brother: Further interest?

Coach: Yes.  You didn't stop at the cornucopia information.  You continued to seek further connections beyond that one.  That is impressive.

Brother: Why?

Coach: So many members stop at the information they are provided.  They do not question it.  They remain content not seeking Light beyond that which was provided.  You didn't do this.  You're still seeking.  That's impressive.

Brother: Thanks!

Coach: You're most welcome.

Brother: Well?

Coach: Ah!  Good. 

Brother: Thanks! Please continue...

Coach: I suggest you look at the Freemasonic allusions to the Tropic of Capricorn, when the sun is at its lowest point in the sky during Winter.

Brother: Capricorn?  Isn't that a symbol that is based on, "Enki", the Sumerians' primordial god of wisdom and waters?

Coach: Yes!  It is.

Brother: Doesn't Capricorn have the head and upper body of a goat and the lower body and tail of a fish.

Coach: Yes. The goat part of the symbol depicts ambition, resoluteness, intelligence, curiosity, steadiness and an ability to thrive in inhospitable environments.

Brother:  And this is all alluded to by the time of year that Saint John the Evangelist's day is observed?

Coach: Yes.  Under the tropical zodiac, the sun transits this area of the heavens from December 22 to January 19 each year.  The dates differ for the sidereal zodiac.

Brother: I'm enjoying these goat connections.  What's more?

Coach: Good!  You're remaining on task.  Have you ever looked at the word "Tragedy"?

Brother: A long time ago.  Why?

Coach: You might want to look into it again and make a sincere effort to connect the etymology of the word with that which we do overall and that which we do for candidates as we carry them through the third degree drama.[2]

Brother: Wait?  You're not going to give me the Light?

Coach: I just did.  It is up to you to use it.


[1] a.k.a or called "rods" in many jurisdictions
[2] Chapter XIII; The First Freemason; The Craft Unmasked! The Uncommon Origin of Freemasonry and Its Practice; Bro. John S Nagy; Nov. 2014



Unknown said...

Interesting. I always though they were rods not staffs. Did I miss something?

Coach John S Nagy said...

See the end note: [1] a.k.a or called "rods" in many jurisdictions