Order of the Secret Monitor
Ritual for the Degree of Prince


1988



Form of opening an Assembly of Princes

The Conclave having been previously opened in the First Degree, the Immediate Past Supreme Ruler leaves the Conclave unobtrusively.
The Sentinel gives the knocks of the First Degree on the door of the Conclave.
Guarder, gives Sign of a Select Master:
Brother Guide, there is a report.
Guide:
Find out the occasion thereof.
Guarder, opening the door:
Who seeks admission.
Sentinel:
The Most Mighty and Eminent Prince Jonathan desires a conference.
Guarder:
Wait while I report to the Supreme Ruler.
Guarder, after closing the door, gives Sign of a Select Master:
Supreme Ruler, the Most Mighty and Eminent Prince Jonathan is without and desires a conference.
Supreme Ruler:
Will the Grand Officers and the Past Supreme Rulers accompany me?
Music.

The Supreme Ruler withdraws, accompanied by the Grand Officers and Past Supreme Rulers in order of precedence, seniors leading, preceded by the Director of Ceremonies, the Conclave remaining under the rule of the Chaplain The Chaplain and the Guide must stay in their respective places even though they may be Grand Officers or Past Supreme Rulers. The door is closed behind the procession. When outside, the Supreme Ruler divests himself of his robe and places it upon Jonathan.

The Supreme Ruler keeps the Sash and Collarette on himself.

The Sentinel gives the knocks of the First Degree on the door of the Conclave.

Guarder, gives Sign of a Secret Monitor:
Brother Guide, there is a report.
Guide:
Find out the occasion thereof.
Guarder, opening the door:
Who seeks admission?
Sentinel:
The Supreme Ruler returns with Prince Jonathan and his suite.
Guarder, after closing the door, gives Sign of a Secret Monitor:
Brother Chaplain
the Supreme Ruler returns with Prince Jonathan and his suite.
Chaplain:
Admit them. Brethren, to order as Secret Monitors.
Music.
The escort of Grand Officers and Past Supreme Rulers enter in procession, juniors leading. Director of Ceremonies heads procession. On arriving in the East, escort turns inwards, David and Jonathan enter between the ranks, Jonathan walking on right; David places Jonathan in the seat of Supreme Ruler and himself occupies seat of Immediate Past Supreme Ruler. Escort file from rear to seats.

Director of Ceremonies:
Brethren, be seated.
Jonathan:
Brother David, who are these about us?
David rises, and gives Sign of a Secret Monitor:
Brethren of our Order, Most Mighty Prince.
Jonathan:
We would be alone with David our Brother. Let all men retire.
Guide, rises, gives Sign of a Secret Monitor:
Most Mighty Prince, may we ask that the Princes of the Order be permitted to remain?
David, rises, and gives Sign of a Secret Monitor:
The Princes of the Order beg the favour of your permission to remain.
Jonathan:
Let all below the rank of a Prince of our Order retire.
All below the rank of a Prince of the Order, including the Candidate about to be admitted, withdraw from the Conclave.

Jonathan:
Let each one prove himself a Prince of our Order, or retire on pain of death.
Director of Ceremonies:
Princes, you will assemble in the North and pass before Prince David, to whom you will communicate the pass word.
The Director of Ceremonies leads the Princes in procession; each one as he passes
David (who places himself in a convenient position) gives the Sign of a Secret Monitor and communicates the pass word in a whisper. Assistant Director of Ceremonies places himself about halfway along the line of Princes and halts at West end of South side so that the number of Princes on the North side is about equal to that on the South side.

David:
All present are true and faithful Princes of our Order.
Jonathan:
My Brother David, do thou assume the Kingís seat, for verily thou shalt be King over Israel, and I shall be next unto thee, and that also my father knoweth.
David leaves his seat and moves to the right-hand side of Jonathan. Jonathan then rises, removes robe and places it on David. Jonathan then 'hands' David into chair and moves to seat on Davidís left but remains standing.
Jonathan:
Let our Brother Abishai sit on thy right hand, done and let Adino and Eleazar guard our courts, done while Shammah keepeth watch done.
The officers arm themselves and rake their places as follows Abishai occupies the seat of Guide, Adino and Eleazar take the places of the 2nd and 4th Visiting Deacons respectively, and Shammah takes his place in the West, while the chairs of Chaplain and Guarder. remain vacant. The chairs of the 1st and 3rd Visiting Deacons are removed by Adino and Eleazar; and Shammah removes the kneeling stool to West.
Second degree sashes with swords already inserted should be placed in a convenient position for Officers to pick up. Officers remove first degree sashes.
David:
Let the Captains prove the mighty men.
Adino and Eleazar pass from West to East and receive from each Prince the Sign, Token and Word of the Second Degree. (Proving: on receiving the Token, Adino or Eleazar gives the greeting and the Prince being proved replies "Eleikum Salaam"). On their return to their places Eleazar gives Sign of a Secret Monitor and reports to David.
It is not necessary to prove Grand Council Officers seated in the East.
Eleazar:
All are proved men, my lord, all mighty men of valour and faithful to the cause.
David gives **   **, repeated by Shammah and Sentinel.
Shammah:
The watch is set; no enemy appeareth.
David:
Princes, be seated.
Shammah places kneeling stool for Candidate, in position in West.

Ceremony of Admission of a Prince

The Sentinel knocks once upon the door.
Shammah, gives Sign of a Secret Monitor:
Brother Abishai, there is an alarm.
Abishai:
Ascertain the cause thereof.
Shammah, opening the door:
Wherefore this alarm?
Sentinel:
Brother ..., a worthy Secret Monitor, humbly craves to be admitted to the rank of Prince of the Order.
Shammah:
Let him wait patiently while I report. After closing the door, gives Sign of a Secret Monitor: Most Mighty Prince, Brother ..., a worthy Secret Monitor, stands without and humbly craves to be admitted to the rank of Prince of our Order.
David:
Let him enter.
The Candidate is received by Shammah, who places him before the kneeling stool in the West and instructs him to salute as a Secret Monitor.
David:
Let the Candidate kneel while the Blessing of Heaven is invoked on our proceedings.
We implore Thine aid, Grand Supreme Ruler of the Universe, to this Assembly of Princes, and humbly beseech Thee so to increase Thy beneficent influence upon this candidate now about to be admitted to our ranks that his life and actions may henceforth be regulated according to Thy Holy Will and Word. So Mote It Be.
Let the Candidate rise.
Director of Ceremonies removes kneeling stool. Brethren sit when Candidate rises.

Brother ..., as you seek to be admitted to the Second, or Princesí Degree of our Order, it is my duty to demand of you: Do you seriously declare upon your honour as a man and your fidelity as a Brother of David and Jonathan that you will steadily persevere through the ceremony of Admission, and that you will faithfully conceal whatever may be made known to you prior to your Obligation?
Candidate:
I do.
David:
Then I direct your attention to Brother Chaplain, while he reads passages of Holy Scripture explanatory of the ceremony.
Chaplain, stands and reads I Sam. chap. xxii, vv. 11-23 and chap. xxiii, vv. 13-18.

Then the king sent to call Ahimetech the priest the son of Ahitub, and all his fatherís house, the priests that were in Nob: and they came all of them to the king.
And Saul said, Hear now, thou son of Ahitub. And he answered, Here I am, my Lord.
And Saul said unto him, why have ye conspired against me, thou and the son of Jesse, in that thou hast given him bread, and a sword, and has enquired of God for him, that he should rise against me, to lie in wait, as at this day?
Then Ahimetech answered the king. and said, And who is so faithful among all thy servants as David, which is the kingís son in law, and goeth at thy bidding, and is honourable in thine house?
Did I then begin to enquire of God for him? be it far from me: let not the king impute any thing unto his servant, nor to all the house of my father: for thy servant knew nothing of all this, less or more.
And the king said, Thou shalt surely die, Ahimelech, thou, and all thy father's house.
And the king said unto the footmen that stood about him, Turn, and slay the
priests of the Lord; because their hand also is with David. and because they knew when he fled, and did not shew it to me. But the servants of the king would riot put forth their hand to fall upon the priests of the Lord.
And the king said to Doeg, Turn thou, and fall upon the priests. And Doeg the Edomite turned, and he fell upon the priests, and slew on that day fourscore and five persons that did wear a linen ephod.
And Nob, the city of the priests, smote he with the edge of the sword, both men and women, children and sucklings, and oxen, and asses, and sheep, with the edge of the sword.
And one of the sons of Ahimelech the son of Ahitub, named Abiathar, escaped, and fled after David.
And Abiathar shewed David that Saul had slain the Lordís priests.
And David said unto Abiathar, I knew it that day, when Doeg the Edomite was there, that he would surely tell Saul: I have occasioned the death of all the persons of thy fatherís house.
Abide thou with me, fear not: for he that seeketh my life seeketh thy life: but with me thou shalt be in safeguard.
Then David and his men, which were about six hundred, arose and departed out of Keilah, and went whithersoever they could go. And it was told Saul that David was escaped from Keilah; and he forbare to go forth.
And David abode in the wilderness in strong holds. and remained in a mountain in the wilderness of Ziph. And Saul sought him every day, but God delivered him nor into his hand.
And David saw that Saul was come out to seek his life: and David was in the wilderness of Ziph in a wood.
And Jonathan Saulís son arose, and went to David into the wood, and strengthened his hand in God.
And he said unto him, Fear not: for the hand of Saul my father shall not find thee; and thou shalt be king over Israel and I shall be next unto thee, and that also Saul my father knoweth.
And they two made a covenant before the Lord: and David abode in the wood, and Jonathan went to his house.
Chaplain resumes his seat.

David:
From the portions of Scripture just read you have learned that Saul, in his persecution of David, spared no one whom he believed to be aiding in his concealment, and that in the city of Nob even the priests of the Lord were slain at his merciless command, only one of the family of Ahimelech saving his life by flight. As the ceremony of Admission is based upon these circumstances, it is necessary that you should assume the name and character of Abiathar who thus escaped. Are you willing to do so?
Candidate:
I am.
David:
Then I will entrust you with the Pass Word by which you may regain admission. It is Ziph.
David instructs the Candidate to repeat and spell the Pass Word.

The Candidate is shewn out by Shammah.

After a brief interval the Sentinel knocks once upon the door.

Shammah, gives Sign of a Secret Monitor:
Brother Abishai, there is an alarm.
Abishai:
Ascertain the cause thereof.
Shammah, opening the door:
Wherefore this alarm?
Sentinel:
Abiathar, the son of Ahimelech, who has escaped from the slaughter of his fatherís house at the hands of Doeg the Edomite, desires to be admitted as a Prince of the Order.
Shammah to Candidate:
Give me the Pass Word.
Candidate:
Ziph.
Shammah:
Wait while I report. After closing the door, he gives Sign of a Secret Monitor: Most Mighty Prince, our trusty Brother Abiathar, who has escaped from the slaughter of his fatherís house at the hands of Doeg the Edomite, desires to come among us and to be admitted a Prince of our Order.
David:
Is he in possession of the Pass Word?
Shammah:
He is, Most Mighty Prince.
David:
Let him enter.
Shammah receives the Candidate, and places him in the West facing East.

David:
Cursed be this Doeg: nevertheless, abide, thou with me, fear not, for he that seeketh my life seeketh thy life, but with me thou shalt be in safeguard.
Chaplain, rises and reads Psalm xi, vv. 1, 2 and 4-7.

In the Lord put I my trust: how say ye to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain?
For, lo, the wicked bend their bow, they make ready their arrow upon the string, that they may privily shoot at the upright in heart.
The Lord is in his holy temple, the Lordís throne is in heaven: his eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men.
The Lord trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth.
Upon the wicked he shall rain snares, fire and brimstone, and an horrible tempest: this shall be the portion of their cup.
For the righteous Lord loveth righteousness; his countenance doth behold the upright.
Abishai, rises:
Brother Abiathar, will you this day cast in your lot with us, friend of our friends, foe of our foes, using your best strength on our behalf and aiding us with your counsel, until the Lord shall bring our Captain to his promised seat?
Candidate:
I will.
David:
Then let our Brother stand before us, and we will take of him a binding oath, lest at any time the fear of the King may turn away his heart.
Let the Ezel be removed from its place; Adino and Eleazar remove the Ezel to close to pedestal of Supreme Ruler, leaving Volume of Sacred Law on it, they then place themselves respectively at the South East and North East points of the Magen David; let the Candidate stand within the Magen David. Shammah places Candidate in centre of Magen David and returns to his place in the West.

David knocks once, all rise with the Sign of Fidelity. Director of Ceremonies gives order "Officers draw Swords". Adino and Eleazar present point of Swords towards the breast of Candidate.

During the Obligation Director of Ceremonies, Assistant Director of Ceremonies, Abishai and Shammah keep their Swords at the carry. Director of Ceremonies and Assistant Director of Ceremonies should have placed themselves level with South West and North West points of the Magen David.

Let the Candidate raise his hands to heaven, state his several names at length and repeat after me: 
I, ..., in the presence of the Almighty Ruler of Princes, and before this Assembly of Princes of the Order of Brothers of David and Jonathan, of my own free will and accord, do solemnly vow that from henceforth I will act as a true and faithful Prince of the Order, and will uphold the rightful claims of David my lord; will carry my life in my hand while obeying his behests, and, clinging loyally unto him and the Princes of his retinue, will at all times and in every way succour, comfort and support the Princes of the Order and those faithful to his cause. Their friends shall be my friends, their foes my foes, their cause I will advance by all lawful means, so long as the cause be right and I be free to assist. 
I further solemnly promise to guard, when committed to my care, all the secrets of Princes, and to communicate them to none, except a Brother justly entitled to them, bound under m obligation such as that I am now undertaking, and in the presence of three other Princes of the Order, lawfully assembled for that purpose in a regularly warranted Conclave holding under the Grand Conclave of the Order.
All these points I solemnly promise to observe on the faith of my former obligations and under the further penalty of being hewn in pieces Adino and Eleazar make appropriate movements with Swords as were my father and brethren before my eyes this day. So help me, the Almighty Ruler of Princes, and keep me steadfast in this solemn obligation of a Prince of the Order.
Director of Ceremonies:
Officers take post.
Director of Ceremonies occupies South West point of the Magen David, Assistant Director of Ceremonies occupies North West point, Abishai East point and Shammah occupies West point of the Magen David.
David:
Princes, you have heard the vow of Abiathar, our brother. Will you that he be this day admitted to our ranks and entrusted with our secrets.
All, forming the dome of swords with a clash:
We will it. Officers carry Swords.

David:
Princes, do you promise to cherish him, to acknowledge him, and to
support him as a Prince of our Order from this time forth so long as he prove worthy?
All, repeating the clash:
We do.
Officers carry Swords. Director of Ceremonies gives order "Return Swords."

David:
Then let Abiathar be placed before me. Princes, resume your seats.
Adino and Eleazar conduct the Candidate to the East.

Candidate is placed two paces from the Ezel.

David:
Now that you have been admitted to our ranks and have taken the solemn obligation of a Prince of our Order, I will proceed to entrust you with the sign, token and word of this the second Degree, and will explain to you the source from which these secret modes of recognition are derived.
David, when he was pursued by Saul and in danger of his life, was compelled to seek a hiding place in the mountains, in the caves, and in the rocks of the wild goats. There his father and his brothers joined him in order to escape the cruel vengeance of the irate king, while to them flocked everyone in distress, and everyone that was discontented, and he became a Captain over them.
Unwilling to place implicit confidence in these diverse supporters, David placed sentries on the outskirts of his camp and bound each newcomer under a solemn oath to be faithful to his chief and to his comrades; and, recalling the old oath, passwords and signs instituted by Moses, which had lain forgotten for long years except as they had been handed down by tradition through the wealthier and more powerful families, he recognized the value of safeguards such as these and revived them. Hence are derived the word and token of this degree.
The password chosen by David was, as you have already been informed Ziph, the name of the place where David and Jonathan met for the last time, a place dear to Davidís memory throughout the long years of the remainder of his life, and never forgotten by those who that day witnessed the final and affecting severance of a friendship which for tenderness, fervour and constancy is unsurpassed by anything recorded in the pages of history or romance.
In addition to this password it is customary for Princes to make use of a secret form of greeting. This consists of the words Semper Fidelis, meaning Ever Faithful.
David leaves his seat, and stands in front of Candidate.

The sign is given by each extending the left arm to touch the centre of the other's chest with the tips of the fingers, raising the right arm below the other's left arm similarly to touch the centre of the other's chest, thus forming a living Magen David and it is from this position that the grip or token is exchanged by dropping your left hand and taking hold of three fingers of the other's right hand with three fingers of your right hand; the words are exchanged with the hands raised, and are Salaam Eleikum, meaning "Peace be with you", to which the reply is Eleikum Salaam meaning "With you be peace".
Candidate does not repeat at this point.

David:
Since you will be required to give the sign, token and words later in the ceremony, it might be helpful to you if we go through them again.
Candidate is led through the procedure this time prompted by Adino and gives the

reply Eleikum Salaam at the appropriate place.

David returns to his seat.

David:
Brother Abishai, to enable our newly admitted Prince to pass our sentries you will instruct him in the use of the challenge and countersign.
Abishai:
The challenge revived by David and his band of faithful followers was that instituted by Moses when, after crossing the wilderness of Paran, he wished to distinguish the Hebrew from the stranger.
You will now stand aside no movement takes place until Abishai has finished speaking while Brother Eleazar and I demonstrate this challenge, after which you will be required to take the part of the approaching stranger. I therefore charge you to be particularly careful to observe how the sentryís challenge should be met, for upon the correct communication of the countersign your very life depends.
Adino then places Candidate on South side on left of Chaplainís chair.

The Challenge

Abishai with sword drawn marches to and fro before the pedestal like a sentry. Eleazar passes round the room, and when he has turned the North West corner to walk along North side Abishai presents point of sword towards Eleazarís breast: Gur Amod.
Eleazar:
Gur? shewing the token Ben Abram Oveni.
Abishai:
Ben Abram Oveni? Then, passing sword to his left hand he grasps the token, at the same time raising the hands and saying Salaam Eleikum.
Eleazar:
Aleikum Salaam.
Abishai returns sword to right hand and taking Eleazarís right hand in his own left, leads him back to South side. At this point the following explanation of the challenge will be given to the Candidate by a Past Supreme Ruler who stands in front of the Candidate to give it. Abishai stands in front of his seat while it is given.

Past Supreme Ruler:
Brother ..., before you are conducted through the challenge I will explain to you the meaning of the words used. They are in two languages, the first part Hebrew and the second Arabic. The approaching stranger is challenged by the sentry with the words "Gur Amod" meaning "Stranger halt".
He replies "Gur?" meaning "A stranger?", exhibits the token and adds "Ben Avram Oveni" meaning "I am a son of Abraham our father".
The challenger then repeats "Ben Avram Oveni?" meaning "One of Abrahamís sons?", clasps the token at the same time raising the hands and says "Salaam Eleikum" meaning "Peace be with you" and receives the reply "Eleikum Salaam" meaning" With you be peace".
The Candidate prompted by Eleazar then acts the part of the approaching stranger, and is challenged by Abishai in like manner.
Abishai places Candidate before David and then resumes his seat. Adino and Eleazar stand on either side of Candidate.

Lecture

The circumstances in which the challenge, afterwards revived by David, came to be instituted were these.
After crossing the Red Sea our great and illustrious leader Moses received a visit from Hobab, son of Ruel the Midianite, his father-in-law, who, having dwelt all his life on the borders of the wilderness, was acquainted with every part of it, and consequently well able to advise them how to conduct themselves in case they should be attacked by any of the neighbouring nations.
Moses persuaded Hobab to Journey with the people; and Hobab journeyed with them until they reached the wilderness of Paran.
But, after the twelve spies had returned, and the people, fearing to go in and take possession of the land flowing with milk and honey, were condemned to wander, harassed and embarrassed on all sides, for forty years until the carcases of all that generation, save only Joshua and Caleb, should have fallen in the wilderness, the men of the surrounding nations, moved by the hope of gain and by jealousy of their
power, sought admittance among the Israelites, offered them their daughters in marriage, tempted them to serve false gods, and wrought them much harm.
Finding difficulty in distinguishing the stranger from the Hebrew, Moses took counsel with Joshua, Caleb, and the elders of the people, and instituted a sign, token and word wherewith they might hold all strangers aloof, and so prevent them spying upon the weakness of the Hebrews or mixing with them to their detriment. Moses set guards or sentries upon the outskirts of the camp, and gave them the challenge with which you have already been made familiar.
Hitherto the story has been about Moses; as it now changes to David the name David should be stressed.

You will remember that in addition to this challenge David protected himself from the possible infidelity of his numerous and untried followers by means of an oath and certain other secrets. These proved so powerful that no member of Davidís devoted band was ever found unfaithful to his trust, a traitor to the cause, or wanting in the hour of his lordís trial and need. On the contrary, their loyalty and devotion provoked them to deeds of the utmost heroism and daring; as, for example; when Adino, Eleazar and Shammah broke through the host of the Philistines, and at the risk of their lives drew water for their thirsty chief from the well of Bethlehem, his native city.
Upon his accession to the throne David remembered the oath which he sware, and when Mephibosheth, the son of Jonathan, came to him trembling and expecting to be put to death, as often happened with the seed royal upon the advent of a new dynasty, David said unto him "Fear not: for I will surely shew thee kindness for
Jonathan thy fatherís sake, and will restore thee all the land of Saul thy father; and thou shalt eat bread at my table continually".
Again, when the Gibeonites demanded some of the family of Saul, in order to sacrifice them as victims to stay the years of famine, David spared Mephibosheth, the son of Jonathan, because of the oath that was between them, between David and Jonathan the son of Saul, when they sware, both of them, in the name of the Lord, saying "The Lord be between me and thee, and between my seed and thy seed for ever".
David leaves seat and stands in front of Candidate:
I now decorate you with this jewel, the emblem of a Prince of our Order.
Princes you will form a circle round the Magen David
All present form a circle round the Magen David. David stands at East part of circle, the newly admitted Prince on his right. Director of Ceremonies presents the loving cup to David.

David:
I now invite you as a symbol of our fraternal union to share with us this Cup of goodwill.
David partakes from the loving cup, and passes it round the circle to the left. The Princes receive the loving cup from the right but all remain facing the centre of the circle and do not bow when receiving it or when passing it to their left. During the partaking the Princes chant Psalm cxxxiii.

Behold, how good and joyful a thing it is: brethren, to dwell together in unity!
It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down unto the beard: even unto Aaronís beard, and went down to the skirts of his clothing.
Like as the dew of Hermon which fell upon the hill of Sion.
For there the Lord promised his blessing and life for evermore.
David addressing the newly admitted Prince on the return of the loving cup:
May your union with us prove to be a blessing to yourself and fruitful in good works among your Brethren.
David hands loving cup to Director of Ceremonies and takes his seat.

David:
Princes, resume your seats.
Adino conducts Candidate to a seat in the South East.

Form of closing an Assembly of Princes

David gavels once. All rise.
David:
Princes, assist me to close this Assembly. The Captains will prove the mighty men.
Adino and Eleazar prove the Princes as in the Opening.

Eleazar:
All are proved men, my lord, all mighty men of valour, and faithful to the cause.
Abishai:
Princes, you will assemble in the North and follow me.
Abishai leads the procession and each Prince as he passes before David gives the Sign of a Secret Monitor and whispers over his left shoulder the words Semper Fidelis.

David:
Let the Ezel be restored to its place, done and let the guard be changed done.
Adino and Eleazar replaces the Ezel bearing the Volume of Sacred Law; Shammah replaces kneeling stool by the Ezel; the Officers of the Second Degree disarm and remove Second Degree Sashes; the chairs of the 1st and 3rd Visiting Deacons are restored to their former positions; and the Officers of the First Degree resume their places and First Degree Sashes.

The Supreme Ruler gives the knocks of the First Degree, which are repeated by the Guarder and Sentinel.

Supreme Ruler:
Brother Guarder, admit all Brethren.
The Brethren resume their seats.


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