FREEMASONRY Etc. (MIRAMON NUEVO's blog)

A Masonic website of the Freemasons, by a Freemason, for the Freemasons whithersoever dispersed. "Sit Lux et Lux Fuit."

Archive for April 3, 2008

THE TEST


SEVERAL YEARS AGO, the story is told of a Mason who always wore his Masonic ring and lapel pin when in public. On some occasions, he rode the bus from his home to the downtown area. On one such trip and when he sat down, he discovered the driver had accidentally given him a quarter too much change.

As he considered what to do, he thought to himself, "You'd better give the quarter back. It would be wrong to keep it." Then he thought, "Oh, forget it, it's only a quarter; who would worry about this little amount."
 

Anyway, the transit company gets too much fare; they will never miss it. Accept it as a ‘gift from God' and keep quiet.

When his stop came, he paused momentarily at the door, and then he handed the quarter to the driver and said, "Here, you gave me too much change."

The driver with a smile replied, "I noticed your Masonic ring and lapel pin. I have been thinking lately about asking a Mason how to join. I just wanted to see what you would do if I gave you too much change. You passed the test. Can you tell me how to become a Mason?"

When the Mason stepped off the bus, he said a silent prayer, "Oh God, Grand Architect of the Universe, I almost sold you and my beloved Masons out for a mere quarter."

Our actions are the only Masonic creed some will ever see.  This is a really almost scary example of how people watch us as Masons and may put us to the test even without us realizing it! Always be diligent, whether it is at the theater, restaurant, grocery, service station or just driving in traffic.

Remember, whether it is a lapel pin, a ring, or an emblem on the car, you carry the name of our great fraternity on your shoulders whenever you call yourself a Mason. You never can tell who might be watching!

 

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Masonic Youth Organizations


  • THE ORDER OF DeMOLAY 

Founded in 1919 by Frank S. Land in Kansas City, Missouri, The Order of DeMolay is a fraternity for young men between the ages of 13 and 21. The name DeMolay is taken from Jacques DeMolay, last Grand Master of the Medieval Knights Templar. The Order of DeMolay teaches leadership and values which make these young men better citizens and better prepared for tomorrow’s challenges. Some DeMolay alumni include: Walt Disney, John Wayne, U.S. president Bill Clinton; newsmen Dan Rather, Walter Cronkite, John Cameron Swayze, Willard Scott and Chet Huntley; entertainers Dick and Tommy Smothers, Buddy Ebsen, Burl Ives; and authors John Steinbeck and William Shirer.

  • THE INTERNATIONAL ORDER OF JOB’S DAUGHTERS

The International Order of Job’s Daughters is one of today’s outstanding character building organizations for young girls, 11 to 20 years of age. Character building, developing self-confidence, and learning leadership qualities as well as social skills are but a few of the qualities that I.O.J.D. teaches.

  • THE INTERNATIONAL ORDER OF THE RAINBOW FOR GIRLS

 

Top 20 Must-Read Books About Masonry (Contemporary)


  1. THE HIRAM KEY  by Christopher Knight & Robert Lomas
  2. THE BOOK OF HIRAM  by Christopher Knight & Robert Lomas
  3. BORN IN BLOOD (THE LOST SECRETS OF FREEMASONRY) by John Robinson
  4. FREEMASONRY & THE BIRTH OF MODERN SCIENCE by Robert Lomas
  5. THE SECOND MESSIAH by Christopher Knight & Robert Lomas
  6. ADVANCED MEDITATIONS ON MASONIC SYMBOLISM by John R. Heisner
  7. THE SECRETS OF SOLOMON’S TEMPLE by Kevin L. Gest
  8. FREEMASONRY: SYMBOLS, SECRETS, SIGNIFICANCE by Adam G. Kendall
  9. THE MAGUS OF FREEMASONRY by Tobias Churton
  10. GOD LOVES MASONS, TOO: THE 1ST DEFENDERS OF HUMAN RIGHTS by David A. Roach
  11. WORDS FROM A MASONIC MYSTIC by Michael R. Poll
  12. MASONIC ENLIGHTENMENT by Michael R. Poll
  13. BUILDERS OF EMPIRE by Jessica L. Harland-Jacobs
  14. HOUSE UNDIVIDED by Allen E. Roberts
  15. FREEMASONS AT GETTYSBURG by Adam Kendall
  16. SOLOMON’S BUILDERS by Christopher Hodapp
  17. SOLOMON’S TEMPLE: MYTH AND HISTORY by William Hamblin & David Seely
  18. THE UNEXPECTED GEORGE WASHINGTON by Harlow Giles Unger
  19. THE QUEST FOR LIGHT by Wallace McLeod
  20. THE FREEMASONS: THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD’S MOST POWERFUL SECRET SOCIETY by Jasper Ridley

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Freemasonry, An Introduction


A FREEMASON is a man who has taken an obligation to make of himself the best that he can, for himself, his family, and his community—a man who feels and adores the higher destiny of man; to whom faith, hope and charity are not mere words without any meaning. 

 

What is Freemasonry? A fraternity designed to teach morality and ethics, and train good men to make themselves of service to themselves, their families and their communities.

Freemasonry is not a religion, but it teaches its members to be active in their chosen faith.

Freemasonry has no politics, but it teaches its members to be active in civic concerns.

 

What attracts a man to Freemasonry?

Every man comes, of his own free will and accord, with his own individual needs and interests. One man may join so that he can associate with other men who believe that only by improving themselves can they hope to improve their world. Another man may join because he is looking for a focus for his charitable inclinations. And yet another may be attracted by a strong sense of history and tradition. Many join simply because they knew a friend or relative who was a Freemason and they admired that man’s way of living his life. All who join and become active discover a bond of brotherly affection and a community of mutual support; a practical extension of their own religious and philosophical beliefs.

 

Freemasonry is not a charity; although it promotes charity in its members — in America, Freemasons contribute some two and a half million dollars a day to operate children’s hospitals, cancer clinics, burn wards, senior’s homes and other such facilities.

There are some 200 recognized Masonic jurisdictions around the world and no central authority. They operate under a system of mutual recognition, working within a set of Landmarks of what qualifies as recognized Freemasonry.

Records strongly suggest a lineage to operative stonemasons’ lodges or guilds of fourteenth century Scotland and an inner fraternity of the London Company of Masons. Whether operative and non-operative lodges existed concurrently or if operative lodges slowly accepted non-operative members into their ranks are still debatable. By the end of the seventeenth century most lodges were speculative, not operative, and the ritual which involved the tools of stonemasonry as symbols was all that remained.

 

Freemasonry has been labeled atheistic and pagan since it removed Christian references in its ritual in 1813, and dangerously radical because it would not support oppressive regimes. History shows that Freemasonry has always been outlawed under totalitarian regimes. Before an initiate receives a degree, and takes an obligation of secrecy, he is assured that the mysteries are founded on the purest principles of piety and virtue and that any vows are not inconsistent with his civil, moral or religious duties.

 

Why are the rituals and ceremonies secret?

Tradition, more than anything — there have been times and places where promoting equality, freedom of thought or liberty of conscience was dangerous. Also, a lesson that must be earned may have a greater impact. The lessons are not secret but the presentation is kept private to promote a clearer understanding in good time.

But the true secrets of a Freemason are not contained in the ritual. A Freemason who is true to his obligation will not reveal the modes of recognition but they are not truly secret; this is demonstrated by the number of exposures that have been published over the centuries. The secrets of a Freemason are those personal, private, and lawful, aspects of a man’s life that he may choose to share with a brother, a brother who will keep those secrets. This is not secretiveness, this is discretion. There is also that secret which is not kept secret but is only revealed to those who realize the happiness that comes from living a good life.

 

 

 

 

Masonic Appendant Bodies


  • The York RiteThe York Rite is a concordant body of Freemasonry in which a Master Mason may proceed to supplement or amplify the Craft degrees, affording historical background on the work and meaning of Freemasonry. The York Rite takes its name from the old English city of York. It is said that Athelstan, a British king, was converted to Christianity in York and that he granted the original charter to the Masonic guilds in that city nearly a thousand years ago. Although the York Rite is not a religion in itself, it does develop themes based on the Christian Crusades. In the York Rite, a Master Mason may become a member of three  bodies—a Chapter of Royal Arch Masons, a Council of Royal and Select Masters, and a Commandery of Knights Templar.
  • The Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite – The Scottish Rite is one of two concordant bodies of Freemasonry in which a Master Mason may proceed after he has completed the three degrees of Craft Freemasonry. The Scottish Rite work expands and elaborates on the lessons of the three Craft degrees. As with Freemasonry, the Scottish Rite is not a religion, and it is nondenominational, although it does require a belief in a Supreme Being. The Scottish Rite, sometimes called the “College of Freemasonry”, uses extensive dramatic plays and allegory to emphasize the messages of its degrees. A Freemason, after viewing these dramas, will eventually attain the 32nd Degree in Scottish Rite masonry. To a non-mason this may sound like the member is a high ranking mason, however, this would be a misconception. The highest degree in Freemasonry is the 3rd or Master Mason degree. Degrees as they relate to the Scottish Rite indicate the level of knowledge that a Master Mason has attained. In the Scottish Rite, the 33rd Degree, an honourary degree, is bestowed on members of the Scottish Rite who have given outstanding service to Freemasonry or to their communities. In the Scottish Rite a Master Mason may become a member of three bodies-the Lodge of Perfection, the Rose Croix, and the Consistory.
  • The Royal Order Of ScotlandThe Royal Order of Scotland is an appendant body of the Scottish Rite. Membership in this body is by invitation only. The Order was established in London around 1741.
  • The Ancient Accepted Nobles of the Mystic ShrineMembership in the Shrine is limited to Master Masons. This uniquely North American organization is not, strictly speaking, a masonic body but is closely allied with Freemasonry. Shriners are distinguished by an enjoyment of life in the interest of philanthropy. The approximately 600,000 member organization has a buoyant philosophy which has been expressed as “Pleasure without intemperance, hospitality without rudeness and jollity without coarseness.” The most noticeable symbol of the Shrine is the distinctive red fez that all Shriners wear at official functions. Shriners are men who enjoy life. They enjoy parades, trips, circuses, dances, dinners, sporting events and other social occasions together. Every effort is made to be sure a Shriner has a variety of activities from which he may choose. Furthermore, Shriners support what has become known as the “ World’s Greatest Philanthropy”, Shriners Hospitals for Children. Men from all walks of life and all levels of income find fun, fellowship and relaxation in their individual Shrine Clubs and Units. There are 191 Shrine Temples located in Canada, the United States, Mexico and the Republic of Panama. 
  • The Mystic Order of the Veiled Prophets of the Enchanted Realm (Also known as the Grotto) – The Grotto, a Masonically affiliated fraternal organization, is a social group for Master Masons which was founded in 1889 at Hamilton, New York. It sprang from a series of informal meetings, where Master Masons gathered for relaxation and laughs. There are Grottoes throughout the United States and Canada whose principle charity is the aiding of the cerebral palsy child.
  • The Order of the Eastern Star — The Order of the Eastern Star is the largest fraternal organization, for men and women, in the world. Started in the mid-1800s, today there are over two million members worldwide. Membership in the Eastern Star is open to women who are related to Master Masons. The members of the Eastern Star are dedicated men and women who sincerely reflect the spirit of fraternal love and the desire to work together for good. The moral and social purposes of the order are designed to build character, to promote friendship and harmony among members, and to practice charity.
  • The Order of the Amaranth — The Order of the Amaranth was officially organized June 14th, 1873, in New York City. The Amaranth takes its theme from Queen Christina of Sweden, who in 1653 combined a group of “Sir Knights” and “Ladies” together to have “gala” parties. She called this group the Order of the Amaranth. Today it is one of the few social or fraternal orders that the royal family takes part in. This order meets every other year and holds a ball. It is completely separate from the North American institution of the same name, having no ties to Freemasonry. Under the jurisdiction of the Supreme Council, the Amaranth have 43 Grand Courts, located in Canada, the United States, Australia, England, the Philippines and Scotland; there are also subordinate Courts in Hawaii, New Zealand and Ireland.
  • The Order of the Red Cross of ConstantineThe Order of the Red Cross of Constantine is a concordant body of York Rite masonry. Membership in this body is by invitation only. The order was established in England in 1865.
  • The White Shrine of JerusalemAn invitational order, the Order of the White  Shrine of Jerusalem was incorporated in 1894.
  • The Social Order of the Beauceant
  • The Ancient Egyptian Order of SCIOTS
  • The Tall Cedars of Lebanon
  • National Sojourners
  • High Twelve