But most Masonic symbols aren’t unique to Freemasonry. I view the Masonic use of symbols as a grab bag taken from here, there, and everywhere,” he said. “Masonry employs them in its own fashion.” The pentagram, for example, is much older than Freemasonry and acquired its occult overtones only in the 19th and 20th centuries; hundreds of years after the Masons had adopted the symbol. Likewise, the all-seeing eye saw its way to the Great Seal—and the U.S. dollar bill—by way of artist Pierre Du Simitiere, a non-Mason. (Freemasonry)
The eye represents divine guidance of the U.S. ship of state, or as Secretary of the U.S. Congress Charles Thompson put it in 1782, it alludes “to the many signal interpositions of providence in favour of the American cause.” There was one known Mason on the committee to design the seal, Benjamin Franklin. His proposed design was eyeless, and rejected. Much has been made of the Freemasons purported lineage to the Knights Templar. The powerful military and religious order was established to protect medieval pilgrims to the Holy Land and dissolved by Pope Clement V, under pressure of King Phillip IV of France, in 1312. (John)
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