Are there any subjects not discussed in a Lodge?

The two cardinal rules not to talk about in lodge are religion and politics, as Freemasonry is concerned specifically with neither.

This is an odd paradox in that fundamentally it promotes the individual connection to the Divine, but it admonishes us to not promote one belief system over another. Other topics such as work, family, business or other interests are openly talked about and should be amongst brothers as it builds our fraternal bonds.

What does "making good men better" mean?

Making good men better is a distillation of the purpose of the Masonic experience. The ritual and ceremony serve to convey and teach certain moral lessons and elevate the individual response to a position higher than themselves.

The lessons are things you have likely already heard or have learned in moral society. What makes them unique to Freemasonry is that they are presented in a specific format and context.

How many degrees are there in Freemasonry?

Basic Freemasonry consists of the three "Craft" degrees (Entered Apprentice, Fellow Craft and Master Mason) completed by the Royal Arch degree (Chapter).

Are meetings mandatory?

No. None of the meetings are "mandatory". Once a candidate has been raised to the 3rd degree, participation is completely voluntary and at the individuals will and pleasure. Further, a Mason is not obligated to go only to his lodge once all 3 degrees have been obtained and a certain degree of proficiency has been achieved. Once full membership is achieved, the Mason can go to any lodge or Masonic function.

There are certain protocols when visiting distant lodges.

What happens at a Lodge meeting?

As in any association there is a certain amount of administrative procedure - minutes of last meeting, proposing and balloting for new members, discussing and voting on financial matters, election of officers, news and correspondence. Then there are the ceremonies for admitting new Masons, the annual installation of the Master and appointment of officers, etc.

The ceremonies for admitting a new Mason are in two parts - a slight dramatic instruction in the principles and lessons taught in the Craft followed by a lecture in which the candidate's various duties are spelled out.

How much does it cost to be a Freemason?

It varies from lodge to lodge but anyone wishing to join can find a lodge to suit his pocket. On entry, there is an initiation fee and an apron to buy. A member pays a monthly (or an annual) subscription to his lodge which covers his membership and the administrative cost of running the Lodge. It is usual to have a meal after the meeting; the cost of this can be included either in the subscription or paid for at the time.

It is entirely up to the individual member what he gives to Charity, but it should always be without detriment to his other responsibilities.

Why does Freemasonry have such odd symbolism like the skull?

The skull and bones, or specifically the skull (or deaths head) is actually a symbol to remind us of death, as it is the ultimate equalizer of man as none can avoid its eventuality. This is more a means to remind us that no matter our station in life, rich or poor, we are all subject to the same fate, and that our goal should be to make this world better for everyone.

The course of that meaning is that all Masons should always strive for our noble endeavors, namely brotherly love, relief, and truth.

Isn't it true that Freemasons only look after each other?

No. From its earliest days, Freemasonry has been involved in charitable activities. Since its inception, Freemasonry has provided support not only for widows and orphans of Freemasons but also for many others within the community.

Whilst some Masonic charities cater specifically but not exclusively for Masons or their dependents, others make significant grants to non- Masonic organizations. On a local level, lodges give substantial support to local causes.

Why is "Brotherly Love, Relief, and Truth" so important in Freemasonry?

These three virtues, "Brotherly Love, Relief, and Truth", are the foundations upon which Freemasonry is built.

Brotherly love, as directed towards all mankind, especially to other Masons. Relief, in that every Mason is obligated to relieve the suffering of any Master Mason they encounter who is in dire need and if in their power to do so, to the best of their ability, also to act charitably towards society, giving of ourselves economically, physically, and mentally. And truth, which is represented by the Divine, in its multiplicity and diversity as understood by all men.

Are Freemasons expected to prefer fellow Masons at the expense of others?

Absolutely not. That would be a misuse of membership and subject to Masonic discipline. On his entry into Freemasonry each candidate states unequivocally that he expects no material gain from his membership. At various stages during the ceremonies of his admission and when he is presented with a certificate from Grand Lodge that the admission ceremonies have been completed, he is forcefully reminded that attempts to gain preferment or material gain for himself or others is a misuse of membership which will not be tolerated.

Syndicate content