Freemasonry is neither a religion nor a surrogate for religion, being rather an initiatic philosophy capable of providing cognitive and methodological tools to aid individuals to embark on a journey towards personal improvement and spiritual perfection.
Fabio Venzi in Studies On Traditional Freemasonry p. 175
If no corrective measures are implemented, the consequence could be that the remaining initiatic and ritual vestiges based on metaphysical and esoteric doctrines dating back thousands of years will be transformed even further into a squalid syncretism of a pseudo-initiatic nature.
Fabio Venzi in Studies On Traditional Freemasonry p. 179
It may thus be concluded that the desacralisation and demythicisation of the modern world have markedly affected Freemasonry, which, although continuing to undertake its ancient rituals, has evidently not been capable of removing itself from the chaos of time and maintaining intact its heritage of initiatic and esoteric knowledge.
Fabio Venzi in Studies On Tradition Freemasonry p. 178
The requirement of delimiting the “sacred” space wherein the ritual will be performed consequently implies an additional characteristic of Freemasonry and all initiatic societies: secrecy. The latter term however does not indicate actions conduct in the shadows, but rather a need to remain “segregated” from the rest of the world, to confine oneself to a “sacred” space in which to seek contact with a higher dimension, removed from the rest of the world lingering in a state of chaos and instability. It is solely by means of detachment from the cacophony of everyday life that the vertical pathway can be approached.
Fabio Venzi in Studies On Traditional Freemasonry p. 177
Undeniably, during the eighteenth century “several” Masonic bodies in Europe introduced the principles of enlightenment into their rituals, this distorting their esoteric and initiatic origins. In these Obediences the ritual has gradually been deprived of its true symbolic significance and replaced by commentaries and exegeses characterised by a desolating banality and a dull moralism reminiscent of the “century of Enlightenment“. This “progressivist” degeneration of the principles of Freemasonry has consequently led to a misconceived interpretation of the concept of Fellowship, increasingly construed as an independent “individual subject” invested with a real power within the context of sociopolitical confiness, or levelling out into a form of essentially moral and material soliddarism.
Fabio Venzi in Studies In Traditional Freemasonry p. 170
Of all the theories that have harmed and proved particularly damaging to a correct understanding of Freemasonry, one of the most commonly acknowledged maintains that the origins of Freemasonry derive from the Enlightenment movement.
Fabio Venzi in Studies On Traditional Freemasonry p. 170
Is there any degree of continuity between the Medieval “Operative” Masons and the modern “Speculative” Freemasons? Personally I am do not hold with the idea of a temporal continuity, although it is however undeniable that the “operative” Freemasonry to some extent inspired the choice of Masonic symbols. Indeed, Tradition of which Freemasonry is a “form”, was established following the inspiration of numerous other lesser traditions, as the intuition of a being needs to be provoked or assisted through human actions in so far that the crafts may be consecrated: thus, each utensil, each gesture of the craftsmen may be seen as the symbol of a step towards the intuition of a perfect being.
Fabio Venzi in Studies On Traditional Freemasonry p. 153/4
I have mentioned previously how Freemasonry subsequently transformed from an “Initiatic Society”, degeneration into a fraternal association of mutual assistance that would have found the height of expression in the Obediences strongly bound to the ideals of Liberty, Equality and Fraternity.
Fabio Venzi in Studies In Traditional Freemasonry p. 95
There is no doubt that in Masonic rituals the esoteric component first became dominant, using symbols and allegories (the tools of the craft first and foremost) only at the start of the eighteenth century. It may thus be concluded that although Freemasonry was mainly developed initially as a system of morals it undeniably evolved into a true “initiatic Order”, and the retrospective introduction of the Legend of Hiram is proof of this.
Fabio Venzi in Studies on Traditional Freemasonry p. 92
I will therefor attempt to explain why the theory purporting that the principles of Freemasonry express the philosophy of the Enlightenment movement is devoid of any truth
Faby Venzi in Studies On Traditional Freemasonry p. 29