My guest of this episode is William F. Mann, who has been a freemason for 30 years and written several books, part of them non-fiction, part of them fiction but nearly all of them revolving around Masonic history and concepts.
William was born in the 1950s and from an early age on he was interested in solving puzzles and following clues to discover hidden meanings of his surroundings. His father’s family had a rich Masonic tradition as far as it could be traced back and from his mother’s side William had the chance to be introduced to North American indigenous traditions. Today, William is the Supreme Grandmaster of the Sovereign Great Priory of Canada and lives in Ontario.
In this episode of the show we will discuss topics that might be completely off the radar of many of our listeners as we in Europe have sometimes little knowledge about the ideas and concepts in occulture that are very specific to certain parts of North America. Hopefully this episode will be even more fascinating and also lead to some further research and exchange of thoughts.
One focus of our conversation will be William’s notion concerning the role of the Knights Templar in North America having published ‘The Knights Templar in the New World: How Henry Sinclair Brought the Grail to Acadia’, ‘The Templar Meridians: The Secret Mapping of the New World’ and ‘Templar Sanctuaries in North America: Sacred Bloodlines and Secret Treasures’. We’ll talk about his ideas that inspired him to write these books and the conclusions he draws upon.
In this context we will first shed some light upon the general history of the Knights Templar in medieval Europe and then William will introduce us to the concept of the Knights Templar embarking on transatlantic expeditions to North America. We’re also going to explore a highly fascinating idea concerning certain similarities between Templar and indigenous rituals in North America and their respective core concepts and elements as well as potential historical interactions and relationships between both groups sharing their wisdom on a basis of mutual respect and acceptance.
Of course, William’s most recently published book with Inner Traditions, ‘The Last Refuge of the Knights Templar: The Ultimate Secret of the Pike Letters’ based on a series of 33 letters in the late 1800s between Confederate General Albert Pike and British Colonel James Wilson Bury MacLeod Moore will be of special interest.
In the end, we’ll mention one of William’s upcoming projects to investigate early Templar settlements and the evidence of ancient civilisations in North America with a group of Masonic geologists which might ultimately culminate in a new book.
Music played in this episode
The three – very diverse – music tracks in this episode follow the idea of reinventing something ancient in a new style, which is coming from our modern times.
1) PRELIATOR by Globus – sung by Lisbeth Scott
When I first heard this track, I immediately thought of Carl Orff’s “Carmina Burana” (O Fortuna). But then I realized even though it sounds similar, it is different. It is medieval thought reimagined with the sound of today, but goes beyond Carmina, because it also heavily involves sound enhancement technology. Fascinating!
(Track starts at [7:07])
2) ECHOES OF THE TEMPLE by Ghenwa Nemnom
Lebanon, a land where in the 11th century the Templars were an important political factor, is the home to this music. Ghenwa Nemnom, born in Beirut, is a passionate Qanun player. The Qanun is a Mediterranean ethnic music instrument that originated since Mycenaean times around 1600BC and it is famous for its unique melodramatic sound and richness. Here it is used together with electronic and classical acoustic instruments to create a fascinating sound blend. The recording was made at the Roman Temple of Niha Bekaa
(Track starts at [53:05])
3) LY O LAY ALE LOYA – Circle Dance, Native American
This dance song is a classic among Native American songs, well known through different interpretations of all kinds. Here we also get a very contemporary sound to reproduce this dance song. This is not folk music, but reimagination of its value.