The New Age is the Old Age
Bro. Mason John E. Fetzer (1901-1991) claims that one of his spiritual goals was to infuse religion with science. Yet in his biography, JOHN E. FETZER AND THE QUEST FOR THE NEW AGE by Brian C. Wilson there is absolutely no mention of Religious Science, which peaked during Br. Fetzer’s lifetime. Bro. Fetzer actually speaks negatively about his spiritual contemporaries in California in general and it seems as though that is the reason he never mentions any of them specifically. Fetzer’s book is remarkable more in what it excludes than includes in his so-called “quest for the new age.” It is as though Fetzer missed the boat entirely as he spent most of his life in Kalamazoo, Michigan looking down his nose at the real seekers and searchers. Big fish, small pond.
Fetzer & Joel S. Goldsmith Were Brother Masons Living in the Same Era
Astonishingly there is also no mention by Fetzer of his Bro. Mason Joel S. Goldsmith, (1892-1964) who was one of the greatest modern Christian mystics and also a contemporary of Bro. Fetzer. In Goldsmith’s own biography there is brief mention of a businessman who Goldsmith had a falling out with, but the other man’s name is not given. I wonder if Goldsmith and Fetzer ever did meet because they were on similar paths at the same time? I did some cursory research by Googling “did joel s goldsmith and john e fetzer do business or know each other” but nothing comes up.
Bro. Fetzer’s biography covers a lot of ground that he himself admits was a waste of time like paranormal photography of alleged “spirits” in the form of shadowy images of his ancestors on film. How can you take Fetzer serious when Quija boards were such a big part of his personal truth? I learned a lot about quackery by reading this book. I even learned that the word Quija comes from combining the French and German words for yes – this is the type of “new age” hocus pocus you will learn also if you read this book.
With only one brief mention of Christian Science and no mention of Mary Baker Eddy (1821 – 1910) it is no wonder that this supposed quest for spirituality leaves the reader feeling empty. Fetzer had many contemporaries that were seeking and finding the same thing that seems to have eluded Fetzer and that is that the Kingdom of Heaven lays within.
What About Ritual Intensive Catholicism?
Fetzer talks a lot about Freemasonry but fails to mention any other types of ritual. It is almost deceitful that there is absolutely no mention of the Catholic Church or the Holy Spirit in this book about spiritual seeking.
It seems as though Fetzer and I both support the proposition that the lack of worshiper participation in the ritual-poor Protestant religion is what appeals to many Protestants who become Freemasons. Freemasonry even did the Catholic Church one better when it came to ritual because a Mason can continue on to the rituals of the York and Scottish Rites.
American Masons really showed American Catholics who was boss when it came to elaborate rituals symbolizing Biblical themes. As a practicing Catholic steeped in the practice of the Roman Ritual I was already satiated with ritual by the time I became a Master Mason. I did not participate in York or Scottish Rite mainly because I was not looking for just another social club. Personally I wanted God instead of ritual and so Freemasonry was not what I thought it would be.
Fetzer says that Masonic ritual was very important to him and so it is rather neglectful to not at least mention the ritual intensive Catholic religion in his own backyard. What about the influence of Masonic Ritual upon the Mormon Church and Mormon Ritual? Someday soon I am going to write a blog about this.
I And The Father Are One
The highlight of this book for me was when Bro. Fetzer very briefly mentions the ultimate spiritual truth that: “I and the Father are One.” This is what Goldsmith taught and this is what Fetzer only glosses over! Therefore Bro. Fetzer helps me to build my case that the new age is the old age because this is the one really valuable discussion in his book that “I and the Father are One.” Fetzer never found his new age because it was buried in the Seventh Day Adventism and camp revivals he grew up with.
There is No New Age – Christ Consciousness is the Mystical Union that Fetzer Was After
The Spiritual Christ Consciousness is the New Covenant, or the New Age if you will. It is possible for anyone to attain perfected Christ Consciousness at any time and technology or science is not required. Fetzer confused spirituality with the mathematical perfection of materialism. Bro. Fetzer was an operative Mason but not an esoteric Freemason exploring the mystical books of the Bible. John E. Fetzer attempted to combine technology with spirituality and this so-called “quest for the new age” has failed.