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Article # 14
Initiate responds to his Toast

Author: R.W.Bro.Jaya Chamaraja Wadeyar    Posted on: Sunday, June 16, 2002
General Article | 1 comments  | Post your comment

[ We have received numerous requests for posting speeches and orations by eminent freemasons, so that we can draw inspiration from those speeches. We are collecting the materials from different sources. Late R.W.Bro. Dr. Jaya Chamaraja Wadeyar Bahadur Past Deputy Grand Master, the Late Maharaja of Mysore, Former Governor of State of Madras was a great scholar in Philosophy, Sanskrit and several other subjects. His speeches exhibited great erudition and depth of knowledge. He was initiated on 9 th June 1956 in Lodge Mysore (No.34), one of the oldest Lodges in India having obtained the Warrant dated 23-8-1879. His speech responding to the toast of the initiate is a masterpiece. We are commencing the series of Famous Speeches and Orations with the Late Maharaja’s speech, reproduced below- Moderator]

“ In responding to the toast proposed by W.Bro.Mallradhya, I am called upon this evening to make a speech, quite unlike and absolutely different from the post prandial speaking to which I have been accustomed to, during the last twenty years. It is just over two or three hours, since I passed through the ceremony of initiation. I have had a most exciting, curious and unexpected experience. Every movement within the Lodge and every word spoken during the ceremony must have doubtless a meaning and significance. Naturally, one would require adequate time to comprehend its true import. I am grateful to the W.M and Brethren of Mysore Lodge to have made it possible for me to be admitted to the mysteries and privileges of the Craft. Need, I say, that I have been greatly impressed by the Ceremony, which perhaps marks the first stage of my Masonic career. I look forward to greater enlightenment and inspiration in the higher degrees of the Craft.

I have been attracted to Freemasonry of my own freewill and accord, because it is an International Brotherhood with worldwide interests and its spirit appears as comprehensive and embracing as the globe itself. This brotherhood represents an idealism in which national and racial boundaries find no place. Freemasonry places the fact of God, the Great Architect of the Universe, the Creator of all things in the forefront of its teaching. It recognizes no specific religion, but emphasizes the Universality of all religious faiths. From the limited experience, I have had of my formal admission to the Fraternity this evening, I see that there is a religious spirit underlying the whole symbolic teaching of Masonry. It seems to me that apart from the rituals and symbols peculiar to it, the object of Masonry is generally to make the world a better, brighter and happier place to live in. These are some of the more important and characteristic features of the institution, which have had the greatest appeal to me and that is how I find myself to be one with you from now onwards.

This is a happy occasion on which many members of the Masonic Fraternity are assembled. The quintessence of all religions Viz, the Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of Man form the creed of every Mason and I see that the true spirit of Masonry pervades the entire atmosphere in this delightful festive board.

Light—Light—and more Light is what all of us need in abundant measure. Most of us would remember the story of that Greek Philosopher Diogenes, who used to walk about the streets of Athens with a lighted lantern in his hand even during the day time. Children used to follow him about and make fun of him for doing that. But, when intelligent and grown up folk asked him why he carried a lighted lantern, Diogenes used to say “ what we need in the World is intellectual illumination”.

Many of our students including girl pupils, either being too careless or too lazy, get caught by the Police for riding their bicycles without a light. As a matter of fact, 80% of the people in cities ride without a light, even though they are fully conscious that they will get caught. Light is essential for one’s own self protection, for, the law merely emphasizes that we need light for our own safety. We refuse to carry a light or shall I say, we prefer to remain un-enlightened intellectually and metaphorically. This is the tragedy of human existence.

We were all at one time in darkness and we sought the eternal light and the enlightened ones among us got that light. The light that we got is not merely the light of intellectual illumination that Diogenes referred to, but also the light of ethical perfection, a better set of morals, a higher code of ethics and better living standards based on charity, helpfulness and sympathy.

As members of this great and Universal Fraternity, we should indulge on occasions like this in a little introspection and ask ourselves , “ Do we have light in the Masonic Brotherhood?” Echo answers “Yes”, if we are true Masons. If we have light, we have fellowship. I can not forget this glorious night when I first saw the light of a new ideal, the thrill of a new inspiration and I shall pledge myself to see that the vision splendid does not fade into the light of common day. It is my first conviction that our frequent contacts in assemblies like this would help to keep that light just as bright as when I saw it, if not brighter.

If we think for a moment of the historic past of Freemasonry, one would realize that it is a most wonderful institution. It is not merely because of its glorious past that Freemasonry claims our loyalty, but also because , it has a great mission to fulfill in the present age and a contribution to make to the future of humanity, as stated by W.Bro. Mallaradya. Here within the fold of our Fraternity, men differing in language in modes of thought, in dress and in habits of life, are able to meet around a common altar, share a common hope and seek a common ideal.

We, Masons have a great task to perform. We are builders of a great city yet to be. Since the dawn of civilization, many cities have been built-some have been selfish and sordid, none has been perfect. Jerusalem has been termed the city of faith, Rome, the city of law, Athens, the city of Philosophy, London, the city of Liberty and Mysore, the city of Beauty. There is still one city yet to be built. The building of that city is our special task, our sacred responsibility and our rare privilege and that city is the City of Fraternity.

Masonically we are heirs of past. Our Masonic ancestors gave the craft devotion, loyalty and faith and made it an illustrious institution in the world. It should be our religious duty to appreciate and conserve the rich inheritance. In view of the increasing complexity of life and the maintenance of the best and highest traditions of the Craft, great care and concern should be displayed, if Freemasonry has to function in the best interests of humanity. It has been truly said, that an inspired and inspiring dedication to service should be the part of every Mason’s life. Let us not give in to skepticism. There is all the difference between a pessimist and an optimist, in any field of human endeavour. One looks at his glass and cries “My glass is half empty”. The optimist looks and exclaims “My glass is half full”.

Brethren, let me close with a note of buoyant optimism and also a word of caution that masonry is not always on trial, but we, as Masons, are perpetually on trial. Let us remind ourselves that Masonry represents Manhood at its best and let me venture to express the hope that in building the City of Fraternity or what W.M Mallaradya more appropriately calls it, the Ideal Temple of Humanity and in fostering its growth, we shall be able to qualify ourselves to be men of true enlightenment, character, integrity, gentility and sympathetic understanding and Masons with a burning desire to dedicate ourselves to the service of humanity in our own limited sphere of activity.

I thank the W.M. Mallaradya for the generous references made to me personally and to you all for the very kindly honouring that toast with great warmth and affection”.

The author was a great philosopher and a great scholar in several subjects including Sanskrit and had obtained a Doctorate in Philosophy. His speeches were inspring. This is the first speech he made as a freemason.


Click Here To Post Your Comment

Gerard wrote on Tuesday, June 11, 2002:

Subject: Thank You

Fraternal Greetings and Salutations! Thank you for posting this speech and notifying everyone via the mailer that it is available. I am touched by it, especially the comment that Freemasonry will not always be on trial but that we as Freemasons will be... Gerard Cannoo South Africa



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