Another replay to an Anti-Freemason. As if this has not been done enough already.
To the Truth Seeker24's Anti-N.W.O. corner.
Thanks for the reply back. I very much enjoy the spirited debate and analysis, with someone as convicted as yourself. You are absolutely right, it is a free country, and as such, all opinions are valid, as are all faiths.
First to presume your righteousness over someone else’s is wrong. Because you are of the opinion that God is on your side, and your interpretation of the bible is factual and correct is a huge presumption. What makes you right, but you think God told you so? How did he tell you, through messages in the scriptures that only you and a few others could decipher? Why didn't he tell it to everyone? Why just you?
Swearing death oaths is not taking the lords name in vain. There is no vanity in it, no spiritual gain to it. It is an act of solemnity that is a personal choice. Again, who are you to say that it is wrong, because the way you believe, you feel, is the way everyone should believe? Sounds fascist.
The all seeing eye is a relatively recent addition to Freemasonry, added sometime in the last 150 years or so. It is more representative of the concept of an all seeing God rather than a pagan symbol. Same as the pentagram. Though these symbols have been devices of Freemasonry for many years, they are recent additions. Much of the symbology of Freemasonry spawned from the Victorian age as members tried to give symbolic meaning to the ideas of the fraternity. You mention that Washington DC has man of "those symbols", but if you look closely, those symbols evolved over time through all of Europe to be deposited eventually into the ideas of a "New Republic" that was started as America. The only occult meanings put into them are from the simple minded who need to see it.
The intolerance is in passing judgment, which in this case is your calling something evil and sinful. Because YOU think it is. I would question you further; do you think Jews are evil because they don't believe Christ is the Messiah? Do you think Muslims are evil for praying to Allah, and not believing what you do? That's where the intolerance comes from. It is intolerant to call someone evil for his or her faith, what ever it may be. To say they are wrong and going to hell for it is NARROW MINDED. You can dissent with other faiths, but to call them wrong, only shows your intolerance. You do have a First amendment Right to spew what your faith is, but to insist that others adhere to it, or your version of God will send them to Hell is intolerant. It's casting judgment, of which I'm sure you have half dozen scriptures on, but it's still imposing a matter of faith onto someone else. How this ties back to Freemasonry is that it accepts men of all faiths, all acknowledging God through their own faiths.
Obviously, this aspect is beyond you. You look only to the bible as a true and unaltered text of God's word, scribed by men of divine sanction. Bu how do you know that? What makes that true? Do you just believe that? Is it faith alone? What about before there was a finished bible, what did Christians have to go on then?
As some have written about Freemasonry as a religion, in many aspects they are correct. Freemasonry is an institution governed by faith of its members, but that faith is not the basis for their meeting. Neither is the focus prayer to a deity. The prayers in lodge are ceremonial but still solemn and true. They stand to recognize God through a universal prayer or recognition. If you want to use the idea that because prolific writers of Freemasonry set the tone, could I not use that premise to say that Christianities prolific speakers and preachers stand to represent the Christian ethos? So then, Pat Roberts is professing the true nature of Christ in wanting to Assassinate foreign dignitaries, and Catholic priests stand to represent all Christians as pedophiles? Because some people write or do something does not make them the ultimate spokesman for a group. How many religious leaders stood to defend segregation and racism? Were they right in their Christian values? Did they truly speak for God?
The last point I want to make is on symbolism. You mentioned the obelisks, and pentagrams, and I spoke of them earlier, but reversing the table do you celebrate Christmas with a Christmas tree and presents? Why, there is nothing in the bible that says Christ was born under an evergreen. Do you or children you know hunt for Easter eggs? More paganism in society I suppose you would say. Lastly, did Christ say to worship me though the form of an unequal cross? More symbolism, but from my recollection, Christ never said anything about worshiping him through the symbol. Symbols abound and when TAKEN OUT OF CONTEXT can easily be misconstrued and interpreted.
I’m curious to hear your thoughts.
Thursday, March 30, 2006
Another replay to an Anti-Freemason. As if this has not been done enough already.
Tuesday, March 28, 2006
I ran across this story here about a Nevada State's Guardsman who was killed, in action, for our present war in Afghanistan.
Nevada National Guard Sgt. Patrick Stewart gave his life for his country when the Chinook helicopter he was in was shot down in Afghanistan in September. This is the original story.
Now, he was not a Freemason, and that is not the connection to this being posted here. As a matter of fact, the only connection to Freemasonry, is a mention in the first citation above, of a Co-Mason, a gentleman named Gerald Gardner, who in 1954 founded the religion known today as Wicca.
But the interesting aspect of this is that the US Veterans Administration does not recognize the pentagram, the symbolic icon of Wicca, as a true symbol of faith. Consequently, it has held back from including Sgt. Stewart from a memorial wall, marking his passing with other Nevada state Guardsman while another in his company, who died in the same mission, is already placed.
It seems the pagan symbol, as seen above, is in committee still to be recognized, and not yet added to the list of "approved symbols", seen here from Arlington National Cemetery.
How is this relevant to Freemasonry you may be wondering? My own opinion is that the role of Freemasonry in recognizing the divinity in all faiths is at the core of what Freemasonry represents, and that should transcend to our patriotism in recognizing faith. The inclusion of this symbol has been in committee for 10 years, or so Military Pagan Network, Inc. suggests.
With a true and Masonic spirit, I do suggest that this is an item of interest to Freemasonry, and that as a Freemason, I support the inclusion of the Wiccan symbol to the list of symbols our armed forces use to identify with their deity. It's a shame that we allow our service people to die in the name of Democracy, with religious freedom it's cornerstone, yet still be unable to be identified as a member of that faith.
Freemason | Wicca | Nevada | symbol
Things have been hectic lately around my temporal lodge recently, and I've been trying to keep a lot going so I apologize if I've been slow in posting. I did want to mention however the latest publication from Br. Tim Bryce on the symbolism of 3-7-77 in Montana Law Enforcement. The digits specific significance and history are shrouded in the mists of time, but a wider symbolic meaning can be drawn from Freemasonry. It really is a great representation of the power of Freemasonry, not as a force itself, but the principal behind the use or idea of that force. It's a long read but very well worth it.
A simple set of numbers which many people, including the Montana troopers themselves, have trouble explaining. In its simplest terms, it refers to how "Law and Order" was introduced to Montana and represents the basis for the founding of the state
Freemasonry | Freemason | Montana | law enforcement | cypher
Sunday, March 19, 2006
Only briefly here, things have been very busy of late for me, and not all of a fun and idyllic nature. I came across this in one of my daily searches for all things Masonic. It is a great reminder as to what that "old thing of grandpa's was in the closet".Many masons forget or never tell their family what the importance is of that Lamb-Skin Apron in the tube in the closet.
As we are taught,
It is an emblem of innocence, and the badge of a Mason; more ancient than the Golden Fleece or the Roman Eagle; more honorable than the Star and Garter; or any distinction that can be conferred upon you, at this or any future period, by King, Prince, Potentate, or any other person, and which it is hoped that you will wear with pleasure to yourself and honor to the Fraternity.The link above is a nice reflection on it from a Grandsonwho was left with one.
Freemasonry | apron | Masonic |
Sunday, March 12, 2006
I stumbled on to this by accident, just perusing Technorati's postings on Freemasonry today.
The concept here is to sell pixels, in this instance for Troy, Missouri, DeMolay so they can raise funds to make the trip to State Conclave.
The presentation is a page with spaces that people can buy to sponsor them with their purchase. The sponsor then gets to display an icon of their choosing. It's great idea and a lot of fun. The end results are these wonderful quilts of icons patchworked and arranged helter skelter filled with hot links.
I commend the Troy DeMolay for their work on this and look forward to my own sponsorship.
Great work to everyone involved.
And, if you are a member of the Masonic community, I suggest purchasing a space of your own for your website or Masonic Lodge!
Freemasonry | Demolay | pixels | sponsorship
Thursday, March 09, 2006
AskMen.com, a free online destination for men, is a web site designed to provide men with daily features on subject matter that interests the general male population. Their site functions to "offer men candid advice, that is useful, practical and entertaining." So in that spirit, they have compiled a list of the
TOP 10 SECRET SOCIETIES
Just for the sake of time, I'll go through the list briefly and comment where necessary.
10. Skull and Bones
The secretive college fraternity, founded at Yale in 1832.
9. Order of the Bull's Blood
Rutgers University answer to Skull and Bones, established in 1834
8. Krypteia / Crypteia
A Greek/Spartan rite of passage for youths before service in the Spartan Army.
7. The Fenian Brotherhood
An Irish nationalist organization dedicated to eradicating British rule in Ireland, founded in 1858
6. Club of Rome
A global think tank composed of prominent intellectuals and decision-makers who have met regularly since 1968 to discuss "world problems".
5.The Bilderberg Group
A collection of approximately 130 influential businessmen, financiers and politicians who meet once a year at an invitation-only conference. Rumored to be members are Donald Rumsfield and Paul Wolfowitz. Meetings began in 1954.
4. Beati Paoli
Translated to "the Blessed People" refers to a secretive sect believed to have flourished during the 1600s, composed of nobles and intellectuals who belonged to the congregation of San Francisco di Paola in Sicily, and was formed to oppose the abuse of authority. Its believed that they evolved into the Sicilian Mafia.
3. The Knights of Columbus
A Catholic men's fraternal benefit society based in New Haven, Connecticut.
2. The Illuminati
An 18th-century group of enlightened thinkers that formed in the state of Bavaria.
Quoting from the source:
"Freemasonry is a global fraternal organization that was founded in England around 1390. Over 600 years later, it now has over six million dedicated members scattered around the globe. Among its famous alumni are Mel Blanc, Mark Twain, Buffalo Bill Cody, Henry Ford, Arnold Palmer, Charles Lindbergh, and many more. Those wishing to join these days must be freely elected in a secret ballot. In order to qualify, a potential Mason must first be a man over the age of 18 who is of sound mind and body, believes in a "Supreme Being" and has at least one reference from a current Mason.Interesting list, to bad they missed the mark on the Freemasons. But then it's better to make them spooky and secretive than it is to really talk about the good works it promotes and teaches.
Once elected, a Mason is forbidden to disclose many of the details of his membership to the public. Freemasonry claims this veil of secrecy allows its members to comfortably explore ethical and philosophical issues without outside interference, but conspiracy theorists think otherwise.
According to some, Masons are involved in everything from brainwashing to brokering interplanetary alliances. Perhaps not surprisingly, one of the organization's earliest and most vocal detractors was the Roman Catholic Church, which viewed Freemasonry and its message of religious tolerance as a threat to clerical authority.
Interesting Fact: Freemasonry was banned in Germany shortly after Adolph Hitler's rise to power."
I suppose it should be enough to just be #1.
Freemasonry | Ask Men Magazine | Secret Societies | top 10
Wednesday, March 08, 2006
Post-atomic: Freemason Information - Fighting City Hall
Found this in a search on Freemasonry in the blogosphere. It's a mention of an article I published on my site Freemason Information from Br. Tim Bryce. The comments below it were from a brother on his outlook of Freemasonry for why there has been so much evolution within the rank and file.
Just from a superficial examination, it seems as if the old ways are not the way to go for the membership today. I do think that many of the traditions that we once enjoyed should remain, but there needs to be more. Does that mean to form political action groups as a lodge, or to promote worship services? Not necessarily. But I do think we, as a body, need to be open to communicating within ourselves and be open to talk about these things.
Freemasonry has no room for bullies, and should not suffer them within their ranks.
Freemasonry | membership | Bryce
Monday, March 06, 2006
A news item on Freemasonry from India
As many may be unaware, Freemasonry is many and varied across the globe. It seems that recently I have been hearing more and more on lodges in India that are growing daily.
This is a short article on gathering Freemasons in Hyderabad, celebrating The Goshamahal Baradari, a 3000 year old structure, now symbolizing Freemasonry in the City.
The article makes for an interesting read on Freemasonry in India.
Freemasonry | India | Hyderabad | Goshamahal
Sunday, March 05, 2006
Connections, so much of life is based on the mental connections we like to draw between things. Did the first soda can evolve out of soup tins, did the idea for the plane really come from Di Vinci's bird-man sketches?
Well, in this link, Freemasonry is joined at the hip with several "connections" between the United Nations, Ghana Slavery, Skull and Bones, and Kofi Annan.
I've seen the dance before, weaving elaborate ideas out of a few loose ends. They used to do it on the "X-files" all the time, when Spooky Mulder and his robin-esque side kick Scully would pulls it's disparate threads into an "A-Ha" moment of clarity.
But how often does that really happen? Just because you want something to be there, does that really mean it's there? Take for instance the infamous toasted Virgin Mary. Just because you THINK something is there, does that mean it is?
One thing this article doesn't do is provide anything tangible, just a bunch of gossamer threads loosely knitted together, with "Black Star" references and all.
Maybe it's just all in the VooDoo of the incrementing. Maybe we're just missing the connections...
Saturday, March 04, 2006
Freemasons haven't taken over the world, but maybe it can bring some good.
This is from an article I stumbled on from the Grand Cayman Islands, about Public Servant membership in Freemasonry (or any group for that matter) should be made public knowledge.
Quoting from the article:
There is public interest in the possible influence of freemasons in Government but due to the lack of trust in being able to speak up without persecution or being bullied out of their job and finding their recourse to justice obstructed at every turn people keep quiet.
The public interest is real but silent just like the oaths of secrecy sworn by some when holding a dagger close to their heart.
Government should introduce a policy of disclosure for all Public Servants including the judiciary to be open and honest about their membership of groups such as the Freemasons because transparency is the key to honesty and to improving public confidence in Government.
This takes me back tot he mention somewhere of the Nazi round-up of Jews, Gypsies and Freemsons. The only difference here is that Nazi's didn't have lists of who to get. I can understand the concern of collusion or manipulation, but why does the conspiracy always have to be on the Freemasons?
Freemasons will always speak about how moralistic their organization...
The article says, but then Governments always want to be thought of as incorruptible too.
The greatest cause of such suspicions will always be due to a lack of transparency within the groups, in the public eye and the secrecy surrounding groups such as the freemasons who are, after all sworn to secrecy and indeed carry a lot of influence whether the intent is there or not.Important point here, it is an organization with secrets, not a secret society. Besides, if they did take over the Cayman Islands, what would they have to improve? According to the Official Cayman Island site:
"Cayman has sophistication, surprising variety and a hassle-free atmosphere: here street and beach vendors are forbidden by law. Whatever you choose, you'll find your way to relax - Cayman Islands Style."Freemasonry | Cayman Islands | conspiracy | government
"If anything in life is constant, it is change."
- Bryce's Law
"You can't fight city hall" has been a part of our vernacular for many years. Basically, it is an admission that it is futile to fight the powers in charge, consequently people resign themselves to either live within the system or move on. Unfortunately, a lot of people are moving on in Freemasonry. As a small example, I recently received an e-mail from a young Mason who is resigning from the fraternity. I asked him why he was leaving and he enumerated four reasons:
- I just grew tired of the same routine.
- Some treated me like I didn't have anything to contribute; like
- I couldn't support the next 2-3 people coming into the Master's
- There is no meat to the Masonic organization any longer.
This typifies the frustration younger Masons are feeling about the current state of the fraternity. As a result, we are witnessing polarization in the Lodge room and elsewhere; Old-Guard versus New-Guard, Lodge versus Lodge, District versus District, Grand Jurisdiction versus Grand Jurisdiction. I saw this same phenomenon occurring in the computer field during the 1980's with the proliferation of PC's. During this time, the old-guard maintained the mainframe computers while the young-guard was infatuated with the new technology. The sad thing was that both parties served a vital purpose, but neither party had any use for the other. Inevitably, the new-guard ultimately won out as the old-guard eventually retired. This left a void in technical expertise for the mainframes and companies floundered.
This same phenomenon is occurring in the fraternity as younger members feel powerless against the current regimes in Blue Lodges and Grand Lodges. Whereas the old-guard is content with the status quo, younger members are looking for more substance and fellowship in the fraternity. And the two parties are not working together. The major difference here though is that Freemasonry is a volunteer organization and one becomes a member for life. Consequently, the old-guard maintains a stranglehold on the fraternity. This does not sit well with the younger members who are now looking for further light through other venues.
In my article, "Are We Reading the Signs?" I described how some younger members are starting new Lodges that are unencumbered with an old-guard mentality. The ritual work of these new Lodges is excellent, they just spend less time "reading the bills" and more time on fellowship. As a result, younger members are flocking to the new Lodges, leaving the older Lodges to die on the vine.
As another example, consider The Rite of the Rose Cross of Gold which was started three years ago as another venue for Masons to practice their craft and enjoy some fellowship. According to Rose Cross organizers, the group was organized with the permission of the Grand Lodge of Georgia.
As part of their membership requirements, a person had to be a Master Mason and a member of both the Scottish and York Rites (this was done toappease all of the various parties involved). Unfortunately, something went awry over time; the Grand Lodge requested a list of their members and, from it, unceremoniously expelled all of its members from the fraternity without the benefit of a Masonic trial. To this day, organizers are at a loss as to why their membership was expelled, butthis did not deter the members who subsequently went on to establish
The United Grand Lodge of America of Accepted Free-Masons (UGLofA) on December 27th, 2005.
If you read the web pages of the Rose Cross and UGLofA you have to wonder what all the hubbub was about. On the surface it appears theirintent is noble and their activities harmless. Further, there is no mention of their activities on the Grand Lodge of Georgia web site. Nonetheless, the Rose Cross continued their activities without the support of the Grand Lodge of Georgia. So much so, they started additional chapters in Georgia and Alabama. Organizers claim the Grand Lodge is continuing their policy of expelling members joining these new chapters (also without Masonic trial). Now, the Grand Master of Alabama is becoming concerned with their activities and is questioning why there is a problem in Georgia.
According to a Rose Cross organizer, "We are offering a high quality organization that provides excellent Masonic education and fun social activities. All we are doing is giving the people what they want."
I'm not taking sides on the issue in this article, but am merely noting the phenomenon. Frankly, we shouldn't be surprised by this activity as it represents a classic example of the growing rift emerging between the old-guard and the young-guard. One can only wonder if we will see more of this in the near future.
As Masons, we are taught that if we do not like the current system, we should work from within to improve it. Unfortunately, legislation is often torpedoed before it even gets to a vote. If it doesn't conform to the current policies, it is often stonewalled or sabotaged before it gets to the floor. There are even stories of character assassination of authors of proposed legislation. This is unsettling to younger Masons who, instead, are opting to change the fraternity not from within, but from without. The Rose Cross episode is but one example of this.
These are strange and awkward times for Freemasonry. We now live in an era of highly charged politics where distrust, contempt, back stabbing, and a lack of cooperation is the norm as opposed to the exception. This leads to such things as censorship and political machines with agendas. For an institution that is theoretically devoid of politics, it is political wrangling that is disrupting the harmony and moral fabric of the fraternity.
When I joined the fraternity, I was taught that every Brother was allowed to have their say, right or wrong, and allow the Craft to decide. Unfortunately, this does not appear to be the case. And frankly, we shouldn't be surprised by all of this as man is a political animal by nature. What is disturbing is the rift that is ensuing. Regardless of our age, I always naively believed we were all on the same team.
Today, Grand Lodges are demanding blind faith in the judgment of its officers. They recognize that most people are unthinking and prefer to be told what to do and how to vote. Such abdication of the thinking process naturally results in a Theory X dictatorial form of management which several Grand jurisdictions are currently experiencing. Blind faith is fine if you do not care, but unacceptable if you do. True, we should respect our leaders, but I do not believe Freemasonry should prohibit free-thought or free-expression.
Further, people do not want to sit in Lodge if there is going to be constant bickering and back-biting. Life is hectic enough without adding another level of contention. People want to leave such problems behind. If they cannot find harmony in their fortress of solitude, the Lodge, they simply will not attend anymore (and many are doing just that).
It is very disheartening to describe a scenario where young and old Masons are at odds with each other. The old-guard should mentor the new, but be smart enough not to resist change simply because "that's the way we have done it for years." Change is a natural part of
life; change is constant. But change for the sake of change is rediculous. There has to be an intelligent reason for implementing change. And this can only happen if we are allowed to discuss matters openly, rationally, and respectfully. It would seem on the surface that
censoring our younger Masons is a smart stalling tactic. In reality, it accelerates the change process by bringing the subject to a boiling point. Let us all hope that cooler heads prevail on both sides and Freemasonry survives well into the future.
Down in Florida, the Department of Motor Vehicles offers license plates to "Save the Manatees, Whales, Wild Dolphins, Sea Turtles, Florida Panther, etc." Let us hope we will never need a "Save the Masons" plate.
Keep the Faith.
NOTE: As with all of my articles herein, please feel free to reuse them in Masonic publications or re-post them on Masonic web sites (except Florida). When doing so, please add the following:
Article reprinted with permission of the author and "FreemasonInformation"
Freemasonry | Tim Bryce | The Rite of the Rose Cross of Gold
Thursday, March 02, 2006
Just a short nod to a new Museum of Freemasonry, but if your in the States start saving up, the museum is opening its collection of Freemason materials in Berkshire England.
Quoting from the original article:
The museum was established in the 1890s, but it has taken over 100 years for the collection to be properly cared for and displayed. As curator Robin White explains, “there was a long period, fifty years or more, when the collection was just completely dormant. The whole of what existed in the library and museum was bundled into an attic and nobody looked after it. It was regarded as just a lot of clutter.”The museum also boasts a collection of books exceeding 18,000 texts, which is digitally archived for scholarly analysis. Freemasonry is now becoming an item of interest to many institutions, specifically in England at the University of Sheffield, Center for the Research into Freemasonry
Fortunately, in the early 1970s a Freemasonry study group was established at the center and interest in the collection was revived. The museum now boasts an extensive and highly selective collection of commemorative pottery and glassware, jewels and ceremonial regalia, all the more impressive when considering the museum receives no funding and is staffed entirely by volunteers.
Above, a rare hand-painted leather and silk Masonic apron is believed to date from 1810.
freemasonry | Masonic | museum | England