At this time I'm trudging through a 1950's reprinted edition of "Morals and Dogma of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry" that was originally published in 1871 by the pen of Albert Pike. This 861-page tome (which also has a 218-page Digest-Index stuffed in at the end) covers all 32 degrees of this order. Oddly enough Albert Pike and the Supreme Council profess to be 33 degree members. Can't do much better than that!
Anyway, in the 32nd degree script, there is a wonderful description of water - even describing groundwater quite eloquently. From the book: "Two invisible gases, combined by the action of a force of God, and compressed, become and remain the water that fills the great basins of the seas, flows in the rivers and rivulets, leaps forth from the rocks or springs, drops upon the earth in rains, or whitens it with snows, and bridges the Danubes with ice, or gathers in vast reservoirs in the earth's bosom."
Just a page later the text turns its attention to the weather cycle: Incessantly the great currents and rivers of air flow and rush and roll from the equator to the frozen polar regions, and back from these to the torrid equatorial realms. Necessarily incident to these great, immense, equilibriated and beneficient movements, caused by the antagonism of equatorial heat and polar cold, are the typhoons, tornadoes, and cyclones that result from the conflicts between rushing currents."
It's too bad they didn't reverse these two descriptions to better describe the integrated water cycle, but hey, this is 32 degree stuff, which, incidentally sports the title of: "Master of the Royal Secret".
Much of the book is brimstone and fire type of preaching as far as I'm concerned, but what I'm most worried about is the large printed NOTICE prominently placed on the inside Title Page:
"ESOTERIC BOOK, FOR SCOTTISH
RITE USE ONLY; TO BE RETURNED
UPON WITHDRAWAL OR DEATH
I had really planned on leaving these books for the next owner of this fine old library collection, but now I'm severely torn! Any advice from the Freemasonry members out there?