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Temple of Solomon: From Ancient Israel to Secret Societies [Hardcover]

James Wasserman

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Book Description

16 Nov 2011
The spiritual heart of many esoteric societies, the Temple of Solomon was located on top of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, a site venerated by the three great monotheistic religions as the intersection of Divine and human. Built by King Solomon at the peak of ancient Israel's power, the Temple of Solomon housed the golden Ark of the Covenant in its Holy of Holies, a sacred chamber where one could communicate directly with God. Centuries after the temple's destruction, the Temple Mount was used as the headquarters for the Knights Templar during the Crusades and countless legends have come down through the centuries about the secrets they may have uncovered there, including discovery of the Holy Grail or the Ark of the Covenant.

Richly illustrated with biblical and Masonic illustrations, photographs and ancient and modern paintings - many from rare archives - this book explores the Temple of Solomon in the Hebrew Scriptures, the New Testament and Apocryphal writings as well as its role in the founding of Freemasonry, the legends of the Knights Templar, the doctrines of the Kabbalah and Muhammad's visionary journey from the Temple Mount through the heavens. Seeking to understand the powerful desire of many religions and secret societies to re-create the temple through ritual and prayer, James Wasserman explains why it was built, the magical forces King Solomon may have used in its creation, what its destruction meant for Jews and Christians alike and why the Knights Templar as well as several modern secret societies named their orders after it.

Detailing the sacred architecture of this perfectly proportioned mystical edifice through words and art, the author reveals the Temple of Solomon as the affirmation of God's presence in human affairs, the spiritual root of Western culture and an important monument to the Divine nearly forgotten in today's secular times but sorely needed to bridge the divide between our ancient past and our spiritual future.

Examines the Temple of Solomon in the Hebrew Scriptures, the New Testament, and Apocryphal writings

Explores its role in the founding of Freemasonry, the legends of the Knights Templar, the doctrines of the Kabbalah and the teachings of Islam

Explains the sacred nature of the Temple Mount--the site of the Temple of Solomon--and the secrets that may still be hidden there

Richly illustrated, including many photos and images from rare archives

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Inner Traditions International (16 Nov 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1594774838
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594774836
  • Product Dimensions: 27.9 x 22.1 x 2.5 cm
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,001,236 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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"With colorful paintings, illustrations, and photographs all throughout, "The Temple of Solomon" is a strongly recommended pick for community and library religion and history collections." --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

James Wasserman is the author of several books, including The Templars and the Assassins and The Secrets of Masonic Washington. A longtime student of the occult and a member of the Ordo Templi Orientis since 1976, he lives in New York.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.4 out of 5 stars  8 reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Connecting Past to Present - The Temple of Solomon 20 Mar 2012
By spirited jeff - Published on
When was the last time you picked up the Bible, read it, understood it and enjoyed it? Well now you can. James Wasserman does a yoeman's job of sifting through the entire Bible, Old/New Testament, and choses highlights speaking to the significance of the Temple of Solomon and how it connects the past to present day headlines. I enjoyed reading this book as it felt a bit like an unfolding mystery revealing itself clue by clue. The accompanying photographs and illustrations that fill the book are beautiful and well chosen. Not only does this book help to shed new light on the Biblical narrative but I found miracles in the Bible I never knew existed. Remember the Ark of the Covenant from the Indiana Jones film? Well it actually existed. The Ark of the Covenant housed the Ten Commandments, stone tablets containing rules for living, rules God gave Moses for the Hebrew people to live by. Moses brought The Ten Commandments down from Mt Sinai after he spoke to God, who appeared as a burning bush. Apparently the Ark contained awesome power. Once when it was capured in battle it was returned! When enemy soldiers approached the Ark they broke out in painful sores all over their body! Imagine that? Remember how Moses parted the Red Sea? Did you know his successor, Joshua parted the River Jordan after Moses died? This important event allowed the Hebrews to enter the Promised Land of Canaan after 40 years of wandering in the dessert! Did you know the Temple of Solomon ties in with the founding of the United States through Freemasonary, whose members included George Washington and Benjamen Franklin? This book is a treasure trove of new perspectives for seeing the forgotten thread running though the history of civilization, namely, The Temple of Solomon. King Solomon was considered the wisest king in the Bible in direct communication with the Lord who built his Temple under the Lord's direction. Want to know why the holy city of Jeruseleum is a key element in Arab/Israeli Peace Talks, and why this site is considered holy ground to Jews/Christins/Muslims and contains a living legacy that continues to affect present day events... then read this book. Want to learn more about James Wasserman and The Temple of Solomon? Go to to hear my full interview and learn more about this exciting historical work revealing a living history that will have you looking at the Bible in exciting new ways.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful,, valuable book 10 Jan 2012
By acatlady - Published on
This is beautiful book. But beyond the beauty of its many illustrations James Wasserman's The Temple of Solomon: From Ancient Israel to Secret Societies provides its readers with a comprehensive overview of the ever-evolving place of the Solomon's Temple, its physical successors and its place in the history of Western civilization and spirituality. Using the biblical story of the Temple as his touchstone, and the Old Testament, New Testament and Apocrypha as his guidebooks Wasserman traces the changes in our perception the Temple from the central place of worship for one people and one religion at one historical time to an archetypal symbol of faith, dedication, community, and holiness.

The Temple of Solomon: From Ancient Israel to Secret Societies is scholarly in its approach yet easily accessible to the general reader. While it is of special relevance to readers studying Western esoteric traditions this work will also be fascinating to all who regard the Scriptures as living documents.
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, but . . . 25 Jun 2012
By D. Wafford - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
While I don't disagree with the other reviewers that this is a well-illustrated and interesting book, I find that it presents little detail with respect to the temple of Solomon.

The majority of the text presents an overview of the major characters and events of the entire Bible. This is useful and interesting, and adheres closely to the Bible text, but it provides only very general background in terms of understanding the temple. Even the section dealing with Western esotericism is more of a general historic review than a detailed accounting of specific influences of the temple on Templar and Freemason beliefs and rituals.

I have read a number of studies on the wilderness tabernacle, its types and symbols, and was seeking a deeper understanding of Solomon's temple in comparison and contrast to the tabernacle. There is a light touch on this subject, but nothing of great depth.

I don't want to sound too critical, because I see this as a useful and interesting book - but I do want to be clear that it is not an in-depth study of the temple, particularly with regard to its symbology and types as they apply to the priestly and kingly offices of Christ.

If you are interested in such an in-depth study, I highly recommend "The Temple of Solomon" by Kevin J. Conner. That text does not read as smoothly as this, but it is very enlightening in terms of the spiritual significance of the temple, its similarities to the wilderness tablernacle, and its important differences.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Put down your Bible and buy this book 9 Feb 2012
By Michael Antinori - Published on
The Bible is the story of the longest running covenant and direct connection between the world of spirit and that of human beings. However, understanding the unfoldment of that covenant over thousands of years and its meaning in our lives in the 21st Century can be challenging if one reads only the Bible, given the anachronisms and lack of backwards looking interpretative insight. James Wasserman, the author of The Temple of Solomon, has created a book that puts the reader in touch with the meanings of the Bible, and its central theme, to a depth that would take one decades of studying the Bible to otherwise attain. He remains true enough to the source material, that the story told by the Bible remains intact, with just enough interpretative insight to call forth the meanings that are generally lost in the sprawling text, and archaic literary devices, of the Bible. Reading this book was a religious experience for me.

I must also add that the illustrations are gorgeous and add to bringing the story alive.
2.0 out of 5 stars Old Testament Rehash 26 May 2014
By Robert Beasley - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition
The first three quarters of the book is just a recapitulation of the Hebrew Scriptures. If you've read it you know the story. The rest of the book merely outlines how Solomon's Temple is supposed to play a role in the development of the Knights Templar and the subsequent Masonic movement. If you want to know about the Hebrew Scriptures, open you Bible. If you want to know more about these famous secret societies, much better books exist.
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