Freemasonry, borrowing its symbols from every source, has not neglected to make a selection of certain parts of the human body. From the back an important lesson is derived, which is fittingly developed in the Third Degree. Hence, in reference to this symbolism, 01iver says: "It is a duty incumbent on every Mason to support a brother's character in his absence equally as though he were present; not to revile him behind his back, nor suffer it to be done by others, without using every necessary attempt to prevent it."
Hutchinson, Spirit of Masonry (page 205), referring to the same symbolic ceremony, says: "The most material part of that brotherly love which should subsist among us Masons is that of speaking well of each other to the world; more especially it is expected of every member of this Fraternity that he should not traduce his brother. Calumny and slander are detestable crimes against society. Nothing can be viler than to traduce a man behind his back; it is like the villainy of an assassin who has not virtue enough to give his adversary the means of self- defense, but, lurking in darkness, stabs him whilst he is unarmed and unsuspicious of an enemy'' (see also Points of Fellowship).
Kenning's Cyclopaedia states that Backhouse reported to be an alchemist and astrologer and that Ashmole called him father. He published a Rosicrucian work, The Wise Man's Croton, or Rosicrucian Physic, by Eugenius Theodidactus, in 1651at London. John Heydon published a book entitled William Backhouse's Way to Bliss, but Ashmole claims it in his diary to be his own.
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