Ancient and primitive Rite of Memphis and Misraïm

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The Oriental Masonic order of the Ancient and Primitive Rite of Memphis and Misraïm or more simply, Ancient and Primitive Rite of Memphis and Misraïm, is a dual Masonic - Illuminist system that contains in itself various forms of the western initiate tradition. It starts from the basis, which is Craft Freemasonry, all the way to reach the Rosicrucian heights of Gnosis, including the hermetic-philosophical-esoteric systems of the ancient Egyptian Hyerophants and the Priests of Mithras.

Our Worshipful Rite, because of its reference to Misraïm (deriving from the word 'mizr' that signifies 'Egypt' in classical Hebrew) is also known as Egyptian Rite. This has caused some confusion with Cagliostro's Egyptian Masonry that although related to the A.P.R.M.M. by its study of mystical and theurgical practices, is deeply different. The two united Rites of Memphis and Misraïm, form in their union an authentic order and not a simple Rite. The order was conceived with the purpose of collating in a single organization, all the wisdom, knowledge and the evolutionary desire of initiates scattered in the numerous Ritual Bodies of higher Masonry and in the Illuministic and Chivalric Orders that were active in the early 18th century.

Since these notes have as only purpose the presentation, to Bro. Master Masons, of the operative ends of our worshipful Rite we cannot deepen the historical aspect. However it is useful to say that the A.P.R.M.M. it is the result of the complex intertwining of the Rite of Misraïm (or Egyptian), risen in Venice in 1801 from the work of Filatele Abraham, and immediately spread into Italy and France, and of the Rite of Memphis(or Oriental), founded by Etienne Marconis in 1839 in Paris, on the basis of reelaborating the degrees of the Misraïm, including the oriental initiation and ritual style. Both our Worshipful Rite, and other Rites, are considered similar, because of a defined number of high degrees (and originating from the same period), came to the light after the French revolution. It is possible to state that all the masonic Rites, especially those practiced within the Grand Orient of Italy, came to the light, as Masonic Ritual Bodies, with the purpose of reorganizing and centralizing the numerous Rites practiced in the French and German Lodges prior to the revolution.

The A.P.R.M.M., differentiated itself, right from its conception, from the other Masonic Ritual Bodies, as for instance the Ancient and Accepted Rite and other similar ones, since it was structured to represent, in a single Ritual Body, the twofold masonic-illuministic system. Thus containing in itself the great western and oriental Iniziatic systems. It is essential to clarify that the path offered by the A.P.R.M.M., to the Master Masons Brethren, through its Ritual Chambers has as its primary purpose to furnish traditional tools for a secure individual spiritual growth. Furthermore the Masonic work, founded on the universal principle of aware, elective and spiritual cooperation, carried out by the Master Masons in the ritual Chambers, creates conditions for the generation of positive effects of a spiritual nature, not only within the Masonic structure, but also to the outside, that is on the whole Universe.

The return of these spiritual values on all the living beings certifies and justifies the goal of our worshipful Rite. The diffusion of goodness and justice to all the levels of human and social life, the diffusion of true prosperity and happiness for all the beings, no longer needs to be a utopia. Other Ritual forms, instead, more or less similar to Our Worshipful Rite, immediately after their conception, suffered re-elaborations and drastic simplifications of the own philosophical ladder (of 33, or less practiced degrees), so much to twist the true purpose for which these ritual Bodies had been created. In fact these Rites having excluded from their ritual articulation the cabalistic, gnostic and hermetic degrees, mutilated the Masonic organization in its totality, including the first section, craft Masonry, transforming it, against its grain, in a philanthropic and political association.

As far as it concerns us, in fact, philanthropy and deep social sensibility, accompanied always by the maximum respect of individual and collective liberties, are values that the initiate should have conquered already before receiving the Masonic light and certainly not afterwards. Such values must constitute the input (of the initiatic process) and not the output. They need to be the motivation and the tool and not the final objective. The end of the traditional work and ritual practiced in the various degrees of Our Worshipful Rite, is exclusively individual spiritual growth. It has never been and will never be the development of political or philanthropic activity, directly or indirectly in relation to the profane world, and any action of this kind, from the Brothers of the A.P.R.M.M., even if appreciable, must be considered exclusively as a personal/private activity.