Ghoulish Black Secrets Finally Exposed
What follows is a small exerpt from the explosive new book Inside the Royal Black Institution that blows the lid on the highly secretive Black Knights:
When most people see the symbol of the skull and cross-bones they immediately associate it with secret societies, toxic substances or black-flagged pirate ships. With all three they are generally identified with death or the threat of death. The black flag of the pirates with the skull and cross-bones (which flew from their ships) was known as the “Jolly Roger.” It carried sinister connotations to the sea-farer, representing the possibility of death if the demands of these ocean-mutineers were not adhered to. The fearsome reputation of the flag was so real that it was common that the mere flying of the Jolly Roger flag on a pirate ship was enough to intimidate the crew of the targeted vessel into surrender without even firing a shot. The symbol has also come to be associated with hazardous liquids. It is universally used to warn people that they are dealing with a dangerous or deadly substance. Nevertheless, our main interest is its use and meaning within secret societies, and especially the Royal Black Institution.
A few years ago Tony Gray wrote a critical examination of the Loyal Orders appropriately named The Orange Order. In it he records an enlightening discussion with the then Imperial Grand Registrar of the Royal Black Institution, Alex Cushnie, in which the Registrar explains the use of the skull and cross-bones by the Institution. In the discourse he doubtless revealed more truth than he intended:
Gray asked “Why the skull and cross-bones?”
“We’re a black institution,” said the Grand Registrar. “We’re in mourning.”
“For whom?” asked Gray.
“Joseph” said the Grand Registrar.
Gray writes: “fighting back the urge to ask ‘Joseph who?’ I waited and was rewarded.”
“When Joseph was sold into slavery in Egypt,” he said, “he was given up for dead, and it’s because of that we’re in mourning.”
An understandably perplexed Gray concludes, “I did not seek further elucidation.”
In this interview the Black Grand Registrar reveals much about the actual nature of the Royal Black and its very reason for existence. In essence, he admits that it is a secret Order that is immersed in the accoutrements of death. He admits that it is a society that is in a continual state of mourning. Take away the mourning and the Black loses its identity. It is an Order that proudly parades the symbols of death as an outward representation of its inward beliefs and spiritual psyche.
The skull and cross-bones is indeed one of the most prominent, yet distasteful, symbols within the Royal Black Institution. Whilst this symbol is universally accepted as a symbol of death, its significance within the Black is hidden beneath a shroud of secrecy and mystery. The skull and cross-bones is not merely a Black emblem but is an important exhibit used in its ritual initiations and in certain secret formal gatherings to lay stress upon, or represent secret esoteric teaching. In probably one of the most shocking practices existing within the Loyal Orders, the candidate entering the first degree of the Black – the Royal Black degree – is met with a display of human remains. There, before him, sits an actual human skull and bones amidst a gathering of sober Black brethren. As the entrant views the human skull he is solemnly instructed on the teaching of the Black on death, the resurrection and eternity.
The address declares, “Shortly before Joseph died he made his brethren take a vow that they would carry up his bones to the Promised Land. These are not the bones of Joseph, but they are the nearest representation we can get. You can see they are human bones. To the outside world they are known as the skull and cross-bones but to us they are known as the Black Knights crest. They are symbolic and emblematic of mortality. Death may come and seize the mortal tenement of the soul, shrouding it in the coffin, mouldering it in the dust – the soul still lives on. Thus when a Sir Knight receives the summons to appear before the Grand Lodge above he gets the going pass for the Tyler of eternity.”
And continues, “What is this world but the tyling room of heaven, what is death but the door to that eternal lodge room where our Great Grand Master and departed brethren are waiting to receive us with songs of joy and victory. These emblems of mortality, how forcibly do they serve to remind us of the state to which we are all fast hastening. Once animated, like any of us, they have ceased to act or think, their vital energies have fled. Their powers of life have discontinued their operations, all is now dark. Thus when the sands of life have run and our frail and mortal bodies like these mementos become sepulchral dust and ashes, our disembodied spirits may soar aloft to those regions above wherein dwelleth life, light and immortality for ever and ever more.”