A peculiar system of doctrines concerning the Divine Nature which is said to have originated in Persia, its founder being Zoroaster, whence it passed through Syria, Asia Minor, and Egypt, and was finally introduced among the Greeks, whose philosophical systems it at times modified. Pliny calls it a magical philosophy, and says that Democritus, having traveled into the East for the purpose of learning it, and returning home, taught it in his Mysteries. It gave birth to the sect of Gnostics, and most of it being adopted by the School of Alexandria, it was taught by Philo, Jamblichus, and other disciples of that school. Its essential feature was the theory of emanations, which see. Oriental Philosophy permeates, sometimes to a very palpable extent, Ineffable, Philosophic, and Hermetic Freemasonry, being mixed up and intertwined with the Jewish and Cabalistic Philosophy.
A knowledge of the Oriental Philosophy is there fore essential to the proper understanding of these advanced Degrees.
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