In Virginia, I was taught to use this instrument to “square my works”, but I didn’t fully understand what that meant until I had completed all three degrees. This is what is meant when we say the First Degree is the weaker part of Masonry, that we do not yet have all the light in masonry to determine the full symbolism of those three degrees, however, this is another blog for another time.
As I said, I didn’t fully understand it, but I remembered that it is my Obligation which makes me a Mason, and that I had been requested to study the charges, both ancient and modern, all of which provided me with this information.
Firstly, I was entered on four perfect points, which are the four Cardinal Virtues of Plato. Being a society of Geometry, I had to ask, what geometric form had “four perfect points”? The answer I came up with was, one in which those points must each represent the tips of perfect angles, vis. a square! Let us, then, use this square to represent the four Cardinal Virtues.
I had to ask, is there any evidense to support this concept? Yes, that the square, at least in Virginia, is considered “The square of Virtue”. But What virtue? Couldn’t this be any virtue? I highly doubt it, but it can only represent those virtues atributed to its physical qualities, which is explaned thus.
What is a square? Any adept FC, at least in a Virginia lodge, can tell you that it is related to another geometric form, which is considered a form of perfection, unity, and infinite. When answered properly, we find the form of our working tool, also called a square, which, when combined four at a time, forms a geometric square one way, or a circle the other, but never losing four perfect points.
So then, brothers, when you head in to the world, when you part from your brothers, do so on the square, which is to say, on the four perfect points of your entrance. When you perform a work, ask yourself, “Did I do so in good temprance, can I be confident in my work, was this the most prudent action to take, does it do justice to those whom it affects?”, thus squaring your work.