The Nauvoo Temple Vision
Even though there is no first-hand account of the actual vision that was given of the Nauvoo Temple, Joseph Smith recorded that he did indeed see one. While discussing some of the details of the building with William Weeks, the temple architect, he stated, "I wish you to carry out my designs, I have seen in vision the splendid appearance of that building illuminated, and will have it built according to the pattern shown me." (History of the Church 6: pp.196-197; Symbols in Stone, pp. 89,90.) The tradition that heavenly messengers were involved in revealing the pattern for the Nauvoo Temple, and that Joseph Smith then dictated those details to the architect, was repeated at least until the 1850s. (Symbols in Stone pp. 89, 90.)
Click here for a larger version of the Navoo Tempel
Now then, knowing that Joseph Smith had been, "raised to the sublime degree," in Freemasonry on March 16, 1842, it is no wonder that he was influenced by that organization. With that in mind, look at the meanings behind the symbols as defined by, and accepted by Masonry.
"In Freemasonry, all the instructions in its mysteries are communicated in the form of symbols. Symbolism is therefore, the prevailing characteristic of these primitive Degrees."
"Egypt has always been considered as the birthplace of the mysteries. It was there that the ceremonies of initiation were first established. It was there that truth was first veiled in allegory, and the dogmas of religion were first imparted under symbolic forms."
"To Egypt, therefore, the Freemasons have always looked with peculiar interest as the cradle of that mysterious science of symbolism whose peculiar modes of teaching alone, of all modern institutions, have preserved to the present day."
"Each of the Pagan gods, had, besides the public and open, a secret worship paid to him, to which none were admitted but those who had been selected by preparatory ceremonies called Initiation. This secret worship was termed the Mysteries."
"...both the Greeks and the Barbarians, perform[ed] their religious ceremonies with the observance of a festival, and that they are sometimes celebrated publicly, and sometimes in mysterious privacy. Secret ceremonies which were practiced in honor of certain gods, and whose secret was known to the initiates alone, who were admitted only after long and painful trails, which it was more than their life was worth to reveal."
"As to their origin...the first of which we have any account are those of Isis and Osiris in Egypt. "
"These Mysteries undoubtedly owed their origin to the desire to establish esoteric philosophy, in which should be withheld from popular approach those sublime truths which it was supposed could only be entrusted to those who had been previously prepared for their reception. Doctor Mackey was disposed to accept Creuzer’s hypothesis on an ancient and highly instructed body of priests, having their origin either in Egypt or in the East, from whom was derived religious, physical, and historical knowledge, under the veil of symbols."
(Encyclopedia of Freemasonry, pp. 1002, 1003; 316-317; 689. In later quotes referred to as E of F.)
"Every Masonic Lodge is a temple of religion: and its teachings are instruction in religion...This is the true religion revealed to the ancient patriarchs; which Masonry has taught for many centuries, and which it will continue to teach as long as time endures." (Morals and Dogma, by Albert Pike, pp.213-214. Emphasis added.)
"Masonry, like all the religions, all the Mysteries, Hermeticism and Alchemy, conceals its secrets from all except the Adepts and Sages, or the elect, and uses false explanations and misinterpretations of its symbols to mislead those who deserve only to be misled; to conceal the Truth, which it calls Light, from them and to draw them away from it. Truth is not for those who are unworthy or unable to receive it, or would pervert it. So masonry jealously conceals its secrets, and intentionally leads conceited interpreters astray." (Morals and Dogma, by Albert Pike, pp.104-105. Emphasis added.)
"Astrology is... a science demanding the respect of the scholar, notwithstanding its designation as a black art, and, in a reflective sense, and an occult science;... This science was known to the ancients as the divine art." (E of F, p. 110.)
"From that science many of our most significant emblems are borrowed. The Lodge itself is a representation of the world; it is adorned with the images of the sun, and moon and [stars]." (E of F, p. 110.)
"Those Brethren who delight to trace our emblems to an astronomical origin, find in the compass a symbol of the sun, and circular pivot representing the body of the luminary, and the diverging legs his rays." (E of F p. 236.)
"Hardly any of the symbols of Freemasonry are more important in their signification or more extensive in their application than the sun." "...the sun, too, as the regenerator or reviver of all things, is the Phallic Worship, which made a prominent part of the Mysteries." (E of F, pp. 987, 989.)
"Obelisks were originally erected in honor of the sun god." That connection comes from Egyptian worship of the Phallus. "The phallus was a sculptured representation of the male organ of generation. The worship of it is said to have originated in Egypt." Osiris, the sun god [male] was killed by Typhon and cut up into 14 pieces. When Isis, the moon goddess [wife to Osiris] heard this, "searched and found all the parts of his body except his phallus. She buried all the parts and built a column [obelisk] as a symbol of his erected phallus, the missing part, and worshipped it." (E of F, p. 727; 769; 778, 779.)
"Whenever the Israelites made one of their almost periodical deflections to idolatry, Baal seems to have been the favorite idol to whose worship they addicted themselves."
"In Tyre, Baal was the sun, and Ashtaroth, the moon. Baal-peor, the lord of priapism, was the sun represented as the generative principle of nature, and identical with the phallus of other religions. Baal-gad was the lord of the multitude (of stars) that is, the sun as the chief of the heavenly host. In brief, Baal seems to have been wherever his cultus was active, a development of the old sun worship." (E of F, p. 114.)
On May 15, 1844, while Josiah Quincy visited the temple site in company with the Prophet, he heard the following conversation take place: "Near the entrance to the [Nauvoo] Temple we passed a workman who was laboring on a huge sun, which had been chiseled from the solid rock....’General Smith,’ said the man, looking up from his task, ‘is this like the face you saw in vision?’ ‘Very near it,’ answered the prophet." (Symbols in Stone, p. 90. Emphasis added.)
See God’s warning for Israel in connection to Baal worship in I Kings 22:53; II Kings 23:4,5,11; II Chron. 34:4 and Jer.11:13,17.
"By the side of the male head is the Sun, and by that of the female head, the Moon. And the hand on the male side holds the Compass, and that on the female side, a Square." (Moral and Dogma, pp. 850-851.)
"The moon in phases are symbols of the witch goddess Diana (Artemis), and used in black magic. Different phases of the moon have various meanings in witchcraft. All of which are displayed around the temple." (Why is the Salt Lake Temple Decorated with Satanic Symbols? p.1; A History of Witchcraft, pp. 46-48, 158; What Witches Do, p. 93; A Dictionary of Symbols pp. 214-216.)
"As ...Osiris represented the sun... in Egyptian lore, Isis...represented... the Moon. But the truth is, that Osiris represented the male, active or generative, powers of nature; while Isis represented its female, passive or prolific, powers." (E of F, pp. 678, 746.)
"The Druids of Britain and Gaul had a deep knowledge concerning the mysteries of Isis and worshiped her under the symbol of the moon. The moon was chosen for Isis because of its domination over water. The Druids consider the sun to be the father and the moon the mother of all things." (Secret Teachings of All Ages, p. LXVIII.)
Cteis. Symbolized as the moon. "The female personification of the productive principle. It generally accompanied the Phallus...and as a symbol of the prolific powers of nature, and was extensively venerated by the nations of antiquity." (E of F, p.257.)
"The Cteis was a circular and concave pedestal, or receptacle, on which the Phallus, or column [obelisk] rested. The union of these two, as the generative and producing principles of nature, in one compound figure, was the most usual mode of representation. Here we find the origin of the point within a circle, a symbol which was first adopted by the old sun worshipers." (E of F, p. 769.)
"In the architectural plans [of the Salt Lake Temple] it is clear that the upside-down stars that we now see were originally meant to look exactly like those on the Nauvoo Temple, with an elongated point on the bottom." (Symbols in Stone, p. 155.)
"The Freemasons of the United States have, by tacit consent, referred to it (the pentagram) as a symbol of the Five Points of Fellowship. The outlines of the five pointed star are the same as those of the pentalpha or Pythagoras." (E of F, p. 358.)
"The pentagrams and sunstones which adorned the Nauvoo Temple were a clear indication of what transpired in side. The occultic face of ancient Baal or Amon-Ra shone forth, interspersed with inverted five pointed stars or ‘Goatshead star’ (below) associated for eons of time with all pagan and Satanic worship." (What’s Going On In There? p. 61.)
"In the science of magic the pentalpha is called the holy and Mysterious pentagram. ...the pentagram in the star of Magians; ...by virtue of the number five, it has great command over evil spirits because of its five double triangles and its five acute angles within and its five obtuse angles without, so that this interior pentangle contains in it many great mysteries." (E of F, pp.762-763.)
"Egypt, a great center of learning and the birthplace of many arts and sciences, furnished an ideal environment for transcendental experimentation. False interpretations were given to the emblems and figures of the Mysteries, and elaborate theologies were created to confuse the minds of their devotees. The masses, deprived of their birthright of understanding and groveling in ignorance, eventually became the abject slaves of the spiritual impostors. Superstition universally prevailed and the black magicians completely dominated national affairs, with the result that humanity still suffers from the sophistries of the priestcrafts of Egypt." (Secret Teachings of All Ages, p. CI. Emphasis added.)
"In symbolism, an inverted figure always signifies a perverted power. The average person does not even suspect the occult properties of emblematic pentacles. On this subject the great Paracelsus has written: ‘No doubt many will scoff at the seals, their characters and their uses, which are described in these books. because is seems incredible to them that metals and characters which are dead should have any power and effect.’
A good instance of this practice is found in the pentagram, or five-pointed star, made of five connected lines. This figure is the time-honored symbol of the magical arts.... The pentagram is used extensively in black magic....The star may be broken at one point by not permitting the converging lines to touch; it may be inverted by having one point down and two up; or it may be distorted by having the points of varying lengths. When used in black magic, the pentagram is called the "sign of the cloven hoof," or the footprint of the Devil. The star with two points upward is also called the "Goat of Mendes*," because the inverted star is the same shape as a goat’s head. When the upright star turns and upper point falls to the bottom, it signifies the fall of the Morning Star." (Secret Teachings of All Ages, p. CIV. Emphasis added.)
*Baphomet, The Goat of Mendes.
"Baphomet was indeed a common medieval form of the word Mahomet and that not only meant a false prophet but a demon." (E of F, p. 124.)
In addition to this one on the West end of the Temple there is another one on the East end and in the Garden Room of the Temple. In early Mormon writings the "all seeing eye," and "the all searching eye," are referred to. (Journal of Discourses, vol. 2, pp. 32; 84.)
The All-Seeing Eye is, "An important symbol of the Supreme Being, borrowed by the Freemasons from the nations of antiquity. On the same principle, the Egyptians represented Osiris, their chief deity, by the symbol of an open eye, and placed the hieroglyphic of him in all their temples." (E of F, pp. 52, 53.)
Point Within a Circle
The "points" were never finished on the Salt Lake Temple, but are shown on the original drawings. They are prominently displayed on the Portland Oregon Temple around the foundation stones.
"This is a symbol of great interest and importance, and brings us into close connection with the early symbolism of the solar orb and the universe, which was predominant in the ancient sun-worship. But...this was not always its symbolic signification, we may collect from the true history of its connection with the phallus of the Ancient Mysteries. The phallus was among the Egyptians the symbol of fecundity, expressed by the male generative principle. It was communicated from the Rites of Osiris to the religious festivals of Greece. Among the Asiatics the same emblem, under the name of lingam, was, in connection with the female principle, worshiped as the symbols of the Great Father and Mother, or producing causes of the human race, after their destruction by the deluge."
"‘On this subject...it was believed in India, that, at the general deluge, everything was involved in the common destruction except the male and female principles, or organs of generation, which were destined to produce a new race, and to re-people the earth when the waters had subsided from its surface. The female principle, symbolized by the moon, assumed the form of a lunette or crescent; while the male principle symbolized by the sun, assuming the form of the lingam, placed himself erect in the center of the lunette, like the mast of a ship. The two principles, in this united form, floated on the surface of the waters during the period of their prevalence on the earth; and thus became the progenitors of a new race of men.’ Here, then, was the first outline of the point within a circle, representing the principle of fecundity, and doubtless the symbol, connected with a different history, that, namely, of Osiris, was transmitted by the Indian philosophers to Egypt, and to the other nations, who derived, as is elsewhere shown, all their rites from the East."
Now let us apply this knowledge to the Masonic symbol. We have seen that the phallus and the point within a circle come from the same source, and must have been identical in signification. But the phallus was the symbol of fecundity, or the male generative principle, which by the ancients was supposed to be the sun, they looking to the creature and not to the Creator. The point within a circle was then originally the symbol of the sun; and ... the lingam of India stood in the center of the lunette." (E of F, pp. 787-788. Emphasis added.)