Thursday, March 29, 2012

We Are All So Busy...

Busy lifestyles complicate time commitments. No question about it. Where one spouse used to be the major source of the family’s income, now both spouses work. When they come home in the evening, they want time together rather than separate functions to attend, if indeed there is a desire to participate at all. This clearly means that any organization wishing to attract members must offer something of great interest to even be considered worthwhile.

 - It's About Time: Moving Masonry into the 21st Century

Excerpt from the study of the Masonic Service Association of North America. The entire study is excellent and quite readable.  Masons should make sure they have read this.  It is available at:

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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Excerpt From A Discourse on Brotherly Love (1783)

Samuel Seabury (1729-1796)
WHOEVER has studied this Religion, with that attention which its importance demands, will find that it furnishes mankind with the best philosophy, and most perfect institutions of life; containing not only the best system of moral duties that is extant, but, in truth, the only system that is really adapted to the nature and condition of man in this world; being exactly squared to his circumstances, and leveled to his capacity; laying the surest foundation for his happiness; tending to raise his powers and faculties to their highest perfection, to cement together the whole brotherhood of men, and build them an office of love, supported by the two grand pillars of virtue and holiness, the light and strength of the world.

In NEW-YORK, At ST. PAUL'S CHAPEL, On the Anniversary of ST. JOHN the Evangelist, 1782.


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Saturday, March 24, 2012

"One thing that tells me a company is in trouble is when they tell me how good they were in the past. Same with countries. You don’t want to forget your identity. I am glad you were great in the 14th century, but that was then and this is now. When memories exceed dreams, the end is near."

Thomas Friedman quoting business organization consultant Michael Hammer in Friedman's book The World is Flat

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Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Rejected Stone

"Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, the stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord's doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes?"

Matthew 21:42

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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Excerpt From A Discourse on Brotherly Love (1777)

ON this occasion it would be superfluous to insist particularly on the motives to the practice of the duty of unity and brotherly love. The honorable fraternity to which I have the pleasure of addressing myself, make it their professed principle to cultivate the humane and sociable propensities of the heart, and to diffuse the blessings of unity, concord and peace, thro' the world. And may God, the God of unity and concord, bless and prosper their endeavours! 

Permit me however to observe, That the dictates of reason, of humanity, and of our holy religion, all concur to give a sanction to your efforts, and to excite you to persist in the well-meant undertaking, of spreading the blessings of benevolence and mutual love over the whole earth. Your society is not confined to parties and sects; it admits not of the local distinctions of nations and countries: Mankind is the object of its attention, their happiness the end of its pursuit; and this end it aims to accomplish, by the most reasonable means, the culture of the benign and friendly propensities of our nature; by promoting peace and unity, benevolence and affection among all the individuals of the human species.

This also is one grand design of the religion of the holy Jesus. His gospel proclaims peace and good will to mankind; and endeavours to promote their happiness by promoting unity, concord and benevolence among them. It confines not its attention to particular sects, and parties of men, to particular nations, countries, states or kingdoms. It aims to connect the whole human race together by love and benevolence, and to make them all happy in this world by the mutual intercourse of good will and affection; and by cultivating the tender, benign and amiable propensities of the human heart, to fit and prepare them for perfect, never-ceasing happiness in the kingdom of God our creator.

From - 

Preached before the Honorable Fraternity
of Free and Accepted Masons, OF ZION LODGE, At ST. PAUL'S CHAPEL, In NEW-YORK, On the Festival of St. John the Baptist,
One Thousand Seven Hundred and Seventy-seven.


Online Source:

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Saturday, March 17, 2012

The Meaning of Warden

Interesting information on the origins and meanings associated with the term "Warden".  What "is" a "warden"?  Where does it come from?

Warden: A Guardian or Keeper.  There is a connection between Ward and Guard, or Warden and Guardian.

A Ward is a guard or a "watch" or watcher.  A ward is a watcher or one who is being watched or under a guardian.  Hence a "Ward" of the State, or a prison Warden.

I find it interesting that the term Ward has as it's root "War" which is the Teutonic base meaning "to defend".  Thus words Ward, Wary, Warden, Guard, Guardian, are all associated or share the same roots, and refer to Guarding, Defending, Watching, and Keeping.  This shows the link between a "Ward-en" and a "Ste-Ward".  Each is a keeper, watcher, or Guard of some sort.

Below is source material from the excellent etymology website  The url is found here:

WARDEN,  (1) a guardian, keeper, (2) a kind of pear.   (F.,—M.H.G.)   Though the verb to ward is English, and so is its derivative warder, the sb. warden is F., as shewn by the suffix.   1. M.E. wardein, Ancren Riwle, p. 272, l. 4.O.F. wardein*, not given in Burguy, but necessarily the old spelling of O.F. gardein, gardain, a warden, guardian; since warder is given as the old spelling of garder.   Cf. Low Lat. gardianus, a guardian; shewing that O.F. wardein was formed from ward-er by help of the Lat. suffix -i-anus.   See Ward.   2. A warden was 'a large coarse pear used for baking,' Wright's Voc. i. 229, note 1, where we also find it spelt wardun, in a Nominale of the 15th century; it is spelt warden in Shak. Wint. Tale, iv. 3. 48.   It meant a keeping pear; Cotgrave has 'poire de garde, a warden, or winter pear, a pear which may be kept very long;' also the adj. gardien, 'keeping, warding, guarding,' answering to Low Lat. gardianus (for wardianus), used as an adjective. [†]

WARD,  a guard, a watch, means of guarding, one who is under a guardian, &c.  (E.)   1. M.E. ward, dat. warde, P. Plowman, B. xviii. 320; pl. wardes, guards, King Alisaunder, 1977.—A.S. weard, a guard, watchman, Grein, ii. 673.   This is a masc. sb. (gen. weardes); we also find A.S. weard, fem. (gen. wearde), a guarding, watching, protection; id.   Both senses are still retained.   Both sbs. are formed from the Teut. base WAR, to defend; see Wary.   Thus the orig. sense of the masc. sb. is 'a defender,' and of the fem. sb. is 'a defence.' + Icel. vörðr, gen. varðar, (1) a warder or watchman, (2) a watch. + G. wart, a warder. + Goth. wards, masc. sb., a keeper, only in the comp. daurawards, a door-keeper.   All these are extensions from the same root.   2. From this sb. was formed the verb to ward, A.S. weardian, to keep, to watch, Grein, ii. 674; cognate with which are Icel. varða, to warrant, and G. warten, M.H.G. warden, to watch, from the latter of which is derived (through the French) E. guard.   Der. ward-er, Spenser, F. Q. v. 2. 21; ward-room, ward-ship.   Also ward-en, q.v., ward-robe, q.v.   Also bear-ward, door-ward, hay-ward (= hedge-ward, from F. haie, a hedge); ste-ward, q.v.; wraith, q.v.   Doublet, guard, sb. and verb.

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Thursday, March 15, 2012

Biblical Clues

"But he answered and said, It is not meet to take the children's bread, and to cast it to dogs.  And she said, Truth, Lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their master's table."

Matthew 15: 26-27

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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

On Proficiency

Below is a "rant" delivered to me by a Past Master whose knowledge I greatly respect.  While he did not intend it to be so, it includes a great identification of several valuable qualities a Mason should aspire to if he wishes to serve within the Lodge.


My Brother,

I could really care less about a WM knowing all the work by heart as most don't understand the meaning of ritual in the first place let alone the deep symbolism behind it! My point about proficiency stems from as you said "the pure as the driven snow" attitude. And whether one chooses to recognize, honor spit on etc, isn't my issue. My issue is the carrot on the stick sort of thing. My issue is the we are perfect and if you were as perfect as we are then you would deserve this. So I feel the issue comes down to whom is be suited to serve. Because if just being raised PHA is the bar I truly motion that we raise that higher and add some understanding of what it means to lead!! That we add the understanding of servant leader!! That we truly realize the importance of sacrifice!! That we study to show ourselves worthy!! That we understand that we are a counselor, teacher, leader, helper, servant, brother, friend, shoulder to cry on, champion of justice and not a biased judge of character, willing to listen and to understand the lodges temperature!! A motivator of men who will lead them but understand he is NOT to be a tyrant!! A man who exemplifies the behavior he wishes others to emulate!! Now if you think for half a second I picked all this up when I became "regular" then you are highly mistaken. But we are taking "regularity" and I get that. Even if 9 GL in the south don't! I get it, doesn't make one smarter or better fit to govern but I get it! But if I am a baseball manager I am putting my best team on the field to win. I personally wouldn't give a damn where he came from!! Can he hit? Can he get me runs? The he starts and holds the position or title. What good does it do to start someone over him and give them the title and he can't do any of that??!! Regardless of his origin?!!

Bro. Only, PM
Immaunel Lodge #153

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Thursday, March 8, 2012

Why Speak in Parable?

"He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the Kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given.  For whomsoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance, but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath.  Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand."

Matthew 13: 11-13

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Tuesday, March 6, 2012

The Perfect Man

A Poem by Beloved Allah

Here’s my plan I’m going to do all within my power to be more like my Father & set out to build The Perfect Man, with just these two hands.

One who doesn’t lie, drink, smoke or cheat; I shall start by using the Bible as a blue print & the working tools of my profession. For this holy book & tools have brought me from out of the dark into the light, it is this divine book & these tools that has opened my eyes to how I shall  no-longer live my life but strive to do all that is right.

I will first need the help of my twenty four inch gauge, for with it I shall measure out the hours in a day, eight hour for work, another eight for building The Perfect Man & to honor God, with the last eight hours that shall be for resting & being with my family; who I need in my life like air to breathe.

Here I shall use the aid of my powerful common gavel, which will help breakdown or do away with all that I don’t need, like being with the wrong people or running the streets.

You see I am working on subduing my passion & being more careful in my actions. This is when I call upon the plumb to get this job done, as it will construct a more upright man, now do you see my goal or understand my plan?

For I strive to build The Perfect Man with these two hands.The level shall bring spiritual balance if I am to ever slip or fall, & the square shall help square off all devilishment.

This will take true skill & much restraint so the compass is what I will use to measure the life of this man, who strives to unlock that perfect man; never allowing others to stop me or block me from receiving further light.

So with my best foot forward I shall be on the level at all times, as I travel up that winding staircase  with attentive ear, instructive tongue & a faithful breast, using my trowel as a sword spreading brotherly love.

Within every breathe I take every step I make as I strive to build The Perfect Man that exists within all good men, who at onetime or another may have lost their way from being…… The Perfect Man!

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Sunday, March 4, 2012

Biblical Clues

"Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it."

Gospel of St. Matthew 7: 14

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Thursday, March 1, 2012

Prince Hall 2012

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