True Secrets of Freemasonry

Those who become Freemasons only for the sake of finding out the secret of the order, run a very great risk of growing old under the trowel without ever realizing their purpose. Yet there is a secret, but it is so inviolable that it has never been confided or whispered to anyone. Those who stop at the outward crust of things imagine that the secret consists in words, in signs, or that the main point of it is to be found only in reaching the highest degree. This is a mistaken view: the man who guesses the secret of Freemasonry, and to know it you must guess it, reaches that point only through long attendance in the lodges, through deep thinking, comparison, and deduction.

He would not trust that secret to his best friend in Freemasonry, because he is aware that if his friend has not found it out, he could not make any use of it after it had been whispered in his ear. No, he keeps his peace, and the secret remains a secret.

Giovanni Giacomo Casanova, Memoirs, Volume 2a, Paris, p. 33

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Prodigal Son

In ritual, we are taught that there should be no contention among the brethren, except that noble contention, or rather emulation, of who can best work and best agree.

Fortunate is the brother who sees that emulation in his daily lodge. I count myself among the fortunate majority of Masons who have been enveloped in the warmth of brotherly love. As I stated earlier in Out of the Sandbox, I spent a year and a half in Saudi Arabia. While I was there, I met awesome brothers, men who KNEW the true meaning of brotherhood.

While in London, I visited a lodge to participate in a Lodge of Instruction, and was welcomed with open arms as if I were a long lost brother recently returned. I also visited Madison Lodge, in Madison, New Jersey on my travels, and again, was welcomed there in the same manner (and immediately put to work in both these lodges, a clear demonstration of acceptance).

I have visited lodges all over the United States, and in EVERY SINGLE CASE, I have been feted and treated as a prodigal son, returning from a long sojourn to my family.

Luke 15:22-24: 22But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: 23And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry: 24For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.

And in these lodges I found a surfeit of that noble contention, with the brothers all working toward a single, common goal, the betterment of themselves, and the betterment of the fraternity. I am a member of several different lodges, and with no exception (!), I have found good and true men, honorable men, seeking the best freemasonry has to offer them and each other.

Do we have differences of OPINION? To be sure, that is the nature of man, to strive, to seek, to understand. When we keep the compasses clearly in view and strive to live the principles of freemasonry in our lives, differences of opinion do not matter, they are things of joy that bring light into our lives rather than things of darkness which cause strife.

As long as we keep our passions within due bounds, as rational men, we cannot possibly err. We should all strive to that which is best for each other, rather than that which is solely best for us. This is part of the nature of charity, to look beyond our own needs, wants, and desires, to consider the whole, to consider our brethren, to seek to aid, protect and support them.

If we, each one of us, will keep clearly in mind that our egos, our desires, our wants should be circumscribed by a consideration of our brothers, our families, our communities, our country, and our g-d, we will be better men, better masons. Its not our differences with separate us, its our differences which unite us!
May the blessing of heaven rest upon us and all regular masons. May brotherly love prevail, and every moral and social virtue, cement us.


Seeker of Light said...

Brother, during these tumultuous times, I am reminded of a saying my father whispered in my not so attentive ear during my misspent youth: Son, if you have a problem with everyone, maybe its YOU with the problem.

Theron Dunn said...

Good thought. I am not sure how it relates to my happiness with my experiences in masonry, but given the few who complain about everything, I can see how your comments might apply.

Thank you

Seeker of Light said...

Sorry those words were meant for the former masons not you. I see the rebel rouser's all over the internet claiming the gloom and doom of Masonry yet all I see out in the real world of Masonry in my relatively small corner of it is growth, excitement and good works. It seems my experiences mimic those you have spoken of.

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