Ancient & Accepted Scottish Rite
30th Degree Information
19° Through 32°
The Consistory Degrees are very different from all the preceding degrees. They attempt to illustrate the creation of the ideal balance between the spiritual and the temporal.
There are fourteen degrees associated with the Consistory, 19° through 32°:
19° Grand Pontiff
This degree proclaims the spiritual unity of all who believe in God and cherish the hope of immortality, no matter what religious leader they follow or what creed they profess. It is concerned primarily with the perennial conflict between light and darkness, good and evil, God and Satan.
The lessons of this degree are learned from the past and how it affects the present and the way we live in the future. We always strive to endure, produce and improve the world as it surrounds us. There is no apron, but the jewel is a gold “parallelogram” (rectangle) with a Greek Alpha on one side and an Omega on the other.
20° Venerable Grand Master
This degree is a drama of the spirit confronting the challenge of disloyalty and treason. Masonic principles and leadership are subjected to a crucial test. The degree demonstrates the Masonic condemnation of all who conspire against the security of the nation and the happiness of our people.
This degree shows us Liberty, Fraternity and Equality. These teach moral, religious and philosophical understanding. This degree helps one to comprehend Deity, forces of nature, good and evil. The apron is yellow, bordered in blue, with three concentric point-down triangles, with the Tetragrammaton (horizontal) and “Fiat Lux” (vertical) at the centre, forming a cross. Its triangular shape relates to the “fourth great light, which reminds us of the Deity and his attributes.” The jewel is gold, with the same three concentric triangles.
21° Patriarch Noachite
This degree teaches that Freemasonry is not a shield for evil doing and that justice is one of the chief supports of our fraternity.
The lesson from this degree is to learn that arrogance; defamation and cowardice are unworthy attributes of a mason, and that humility, modesty and courtesy are the true virtues of men and Masons. The apron is yellow, and contains an arm holding a sword, and a winged figure holding a key in the left hand, and the right forefinger on the lips (the “Egyptian figure of Silence”). The jewel is an point-up triangle, with an arrow, point downward, an arm holding a sword, and the motto “Fiat Justitia, Ruat Coelum”.
22° Prince of Libanus
In this degree, the dignity of labor is demonstrated. It is no curse, but a privilege, for man to be allowed to earn his sustenance by work. Idleness, not labor, is disgraceful.
This degree teaches, “if a job is worth doing its worth doing well”. By doing good work we improve character and become better citizens. The apron is white, bordered in purple, and contains a three-headed serpent and a table with instruments and plans on it. The jewel is an axe and handle of gold. On the top of the handle are the initials of Noah and Solomon. In the middle of the handle are the initials of Libanus and Tsidun. On the blade are the initials of Adoniram, Cyrus, Darius, Zerubbabel, Nehemiah, Ezra (on one side), and Shem, Kham, Yapheth, Moses, Ahaliab, Betselal (on the other).
23° Chief of the Tabernacle
This degree teaches that those with faith in God and love for their fellow man will make great sacrifices to help others.
This degree teaches that the man who forgets his duty to God, family, country, and himself will be in danger of morally and spiritually destruction by thoughts unworthy ambition. The apron is white, bordered with red, blue, and purple ribbons. These colours, from the curtains of the Tabernacle, represent earth, fire, air, and sea, respectively, as well as the Lord’s beneficence, glory, wisdom, and power. On the apron is the golden seven-branched candlestick, representing the seven planets and virtues: Sun, faith (“aspiration toward the infinite”); Moon, hope; Venus, charity; Mars, fortitude (“victory over rage and anger”); Mercury, prudence; Saturn, temperance; Jupiter (conqueror of the Titans), justice. The jewel is a small silver censer, or ornamented cup, held by a handle in the shape of an open hand.
24° Prince of the Tabernacle
This degree teaches that a mutual belief in a Supreme Power should bind all men together in a world-wide brotherhood.
In this degree a Mason must show evidence of compassion, piety and justice. After initiation he may “manifest faithfully the social virtues in order to receive the rewards”, to serve humanity through our brotherhood. The apron is of white lambskin, with scarlet, green, and blue. On it is a violet myrtle tree, and a gold representation of an Arabian tent. The jewel is the Hebrew letter ALEPH, suspended from a violet ribbon.
25° Knight of the Brazen Serpent
This degree teaches that there are desert stretches in every individual life in the history of every nation, with a resultant breakdown of discipline and loss of faith. This degree is a clarion call to faith-in ourselves, each other, and in God.
This degree tackles the concept of pure, celestial, eternal soul of man. He looks within his faith, life, and God and to get a clear look at his inner self. The apron is white, lined in black, and with gold stars on the white side (Pleiades, Hyades, Orion, Capella) and with silver stars on the black side (Perseus, Scorpio, Bootes). Also on it is a serpent, ouroboros, surrounding a scarab, a triangle in a glory with the Tetragrammaton in its centre, and the four initials of the stars Regulus, Aldebaran, Antares, and Fomalhaut. The jewel is a gold tau cross (crux ansata) with a serpent entwined around it, and the Hebrew words HLThI (“he has suffered or been wounded”) and NChShThN (“the Brazen Serpent”) on it.
26° Prince of Mercy
This degree teaches the quality of mercy; that it is a spirit of compassion and tenderness of heart which dispose us to overlook injuries and to treat an offender better than he deserves.
In this degree we search for “the rewards of the trinity of Gods attributes – wisdom or intelligence, force or strength, harmony or beauty.” The apron is scarlet, bordered in white, with a green triangle (point-down) in the centre. In the triangle are the initials of Force, Wisdom, and Harmony, and a flaming heart of gold with the initials I.H.S. (A common Christogram based on the first three letters of “Jesus” in Greek (Ίησους, Latinized IHSOVS); also referring to the In hoc signo vinces legend- Later, Jesus Hominum Salvator; or Imperium, Harmonia, Sapientia). The jewel is gold, and is the same triangle, suspended by a purple ribbon.
27° Commander of the Temple
This degree teaches that Scottish Rite Freemasonry believes in the concept of a free church in a free state, each supreme in its own sphere, neither seeking to dominate the other, but cooperating for the common good.
This lesson of this degree teaches us to scorn selfishness, and to uphold the knightly virtues of charity, truth and honour. We should always strive to assist the poor, helpless and infirm. The apron is of scarlet lambskin, lined in black, with a Teutonic Cross (cross potent sable, charged with a smaller cross double potent or, surcharged with the escutcheon of the Empire – the two-headed black eagle) and a black key surrounded by a laurel wreath. The jewel is a gold triangle, on which the word I.N.R.I. is enamelled.
28° Knight of the Sun
This degree using the symbolism of the tools and implements of architecture teaches that by building high moral character among its adherents, Freemasonry may advance man’s determined quest for the achievement of unity and good will throughout the world.
This degree teaches that our love for God manifests itself in our love for Truth, Justice and Nobility of Soul. The apron is white lambskin, with a vermilion pentagram. The jewel is a golden sun on the obverse, and a hemisphere, showing the northern half of the ecliptic (Taurus to Libra) and zodiac.
29° Knight of
This degree emphasizes the Masonic teachings of equality and toleration. We are reminded that no one man, no one church, no one religion, has a monopoly of truth; that while we must be true and faithful to our own convictions, we must respect the opinions of others.
The virtues of this degree are “Love of God, loyalty to superiors, faithful adherence to promise and active resistance to unfair judgment.” There is no apron. The jewel has two parts: on top is a gold hexagram, made of concave-outward triangles, with a compass open to 25 degrees inside it. On the bottom is suspended a gold St. Andrew’s cross (“X”), with a knight’s helmet, winged serpent ouroboros, key, and a point-down triangle. In the centre of the cross is a Hebrew YOD, and on its points, clockwise from bottom, the Hebrew letters N M I N.
30° Grand Elected Knight Kadosh,
or Knight of the White and Black Eagle
This degree sets forth the tests and ceremonies that symbolize the experiences we must undergo in the building of excellent character.
The lesson of this degree is to be true to ourselves, to stand for what is right and just in our lives today. To believe in God, country and ourselves. There is no apron, but the jewel is a gold Teutonic cross, enamelled in red, with the letters J.’.B.’.M.’. on the obverse, and a skull transpierced by a poniard on the reverse.
31° Grand Inspector
This degree teaches that we should give every man the benefit of innocence and purity of intentions. He who would judge others must first judge himself.
This degree teaches prayerful self-examination. The mistakes today should not be committed tomorrow. Simply, the daily look at ones self to learn to live with the future. No apron is worn in the Supreme Tribunal, but in inferior bodies, a white sheep-skin apron with a silver Teutonic cross may be worn. The jewel is a silver Teutonic cross. The jewel may be suspended from a white collar, with a gold triangle with a “31” inside it. But in inferior bodies it may be suspended from a golden chain, the links of which form the eight fundamental degrees of Masonry: The 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 14th, 16th, 18th, and 30th.
32° Sublime Prince
of Royal Secret
This degree describes the victory of the spiritual over the human in man and the conquest of appetites and passions by moral sense and reason. The exemplar represents every Freemason eager to serve humanity but caught between self-interest and the call of duty. Duty often requires sacrifice, sometimes the supreme sacrifice.
The lessons of the 32° are: a Soldier of the Light seeks truth and knowledge; a Soldier of Freedom demands for the people free vote and voice and attains freedom of voice, vote and opinion for himself; a Soldier of the True Religion combats spiritual tyranny with reason and truth; a Soldier of the People encourages men to be self-reliant and independent; a Soldier of Scottish Rite Masonry is zealous and ardent in the performance of his duties to God, his country, his family, his brethren and himself.
The lessons of this degree are that “genuine brotherhood requires mutual regard, opinion, esteem and charity”. We always look for the good in all, make allowances for other’s short comings. We trust the Supreme Architect to lead us to friendship, morality and brotherly love. The apron is white, lined in black, with a double-headed eagle and a plan of the Camp of the Princes. The jewel is a golden Teutonic cross, with a double-headed white and black eagle in the centre.
33° Sovereign Grand
The highest Degree in Freemasonry in each District throughout Australia one member is elected to this position every 5 yrs by the Supreme Council.
Under the rules that govern all Supreme Councils throughout the world, nine members of the 33° in each Sovereign State are elected as members of the ruling Supreme Council for the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry in that Country.