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The three dots (or three points) were formerly fashionable in Masonic writing instead of the usual periods after initials. The practice was apparently started in France by the non-recognized Grand Orient of France in 1774 and Masons were sometimes called 'Three Point Brothers'. The usage became popular in the US and is seen today in some Scottish Rite documents. Any significance they had two hundred years ago is now long lost.
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Three points in a triangular form (.·.) are placed after letters in a Masonic document to indicate that such letters are the initials of a Masonic title or of a technical word in Freemasonry, as G.·.M.·. for Grand Master, or G.·. L.·. for Grand Lodge. It is not a symbol, but simply a mark of abbreviation. The attempt, therefore, to trace it to the Hebrew three yods, a Cabalistic sign of the Tetragrammaton, or any other ancient symbol, is futile ... [It] is probable that the idea was suggested by the sacred character of the number three as a Masonic number, and these tree dots might refer to the position of the three officers in a French Lodge. Ragon says (Orthodoxie Maçonnique, page 71) that the mark was first used by the Grand Orient of France in a circular issued August 12, 1774, in which we read "G.·.L.·. de France." A common expression of anti-Masonic writers in France when referring to the Brethren of the Craft is Fréres Trois Points, Three Point Brothers, a term cultivated in their mischief survives in honor because reminding the brotherhood of cherished association and symbols. The abbreviation is now constantly used in Freneh documents, and, although not accepted by the English Freemasons, has been very generally adopted in other countries. In the United States, the use of this abbreviation is gradually extending.
-Mackey's Encyclopedia of Masonry
The three dots (.·.) ... were originally intended to represent "Masonic Honor Points". In Masonry, a freemason who has received the first three craft degrees of initiation may put these three dots after his name. Organizations made up of Craft initiated Masons traditionally place these same three dots after the letters of abbreviation of their organization names, e.g. Golden Dawn: G.·.D.·. instead of G.D. The practice is not strictly observed anymore in mystical organizations, but is still used in the original way by regular Masons. Now days, the three dots are often used indiscriminately to represent "mystical", "once connected to masonry", "the Christian divine trinity" and almost anything else. Some organizations, like O.T.O., do not use the three dot triangle in abbreviations of their names even though they are derived from Masonry. [Also note the usage, "Salutation on all points of the Triangle," apparently going back to John Yarker, is found in various OTO documents -F93]. The practice is often not followed when an abbreviation consists of exactly three letters, since three dots or periods are already in place."
-From the Outbasket, Thelema Lodge Calendar, June 1993
Jim Eshelman wrote:That's a very exalted view of Freemasonry that you have, there, my friend! Considering that (Craft) Freemasonry itself doesn't get outside of Malkuth...
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