Freemasonry: Its Hidden Meaning, by George H. Steinmetz. Richmond, VA, Macoy Publishing and Supply Co., Inc., 1948, 1976. ISBN-13: 978-0880530491.
In Freemasonry: Its Hidden Meaning author George H. Steinmetz introduces the reader to the more esoteric and philosophical meanings of the three degrees and Freemasonry in general. This book was written to be a Primer for the Master Mason who desires a fuller understanding of the Craft without delving too deeply into the deeper meanings of the Ritual. Mr. Steinmetz wanted to discuss the hidden meanings of the Freemasonry in a way that would encourage brethren to move on to study more than we get in the various lectures and catechisms of the three degrees. He feels that if you dive straight into Pike, Mackey or Waite you may become confused and discouraged. This book is a step towards more light.
Mr. Steinmetz’s writing is straightforward and easy to understand, he explains complicated subjects using the very words of our Masonic Monitors and other published sources. He breaks down the word definitions for many aspects of the degrees to explain their base meaning and how they can often be misinterpreted, or have a deeper meaning than we initially understand. He is careful to not reveal any of our “secret” ritual or work, but is able to still give incredible insight to the ritual. While this book is fairly basic, as Masonic Dissertations go, it is obvious that Steinmetz is a student of the Art and understands the full implications of the Ancient Mysteries which he claims Freemasonry to be a direct descendant.
I made two pages of notes to investigate further based on my reading of this book. I feel that Mr. Steinmetz did his job of providing me with many answers to my questions, but he also in triggered even more questions in my quest for more light and understanding of Freemasonry. I recommend this book to any Master Mason that wants to begin his journey into understanding the true philosophy of the Craft. Whatever your age as a Mason, this book can be enlightening and open your mind to further revelations in the writings of Hall, Waite, Pike and Mackay.