Friday, February 15, 2013

Three

Hence it comes about that the three aspects of each of the three sides of our equilateral triangle are ceremonially personified by the nine officers of the Chapter-three in the East representing the spiritual side, three in the West figuring the soul or psychical side, and three subordinate links connecting these other two.

Walter Leslie Wilmshurst - The Meaning of Masonry, Chapter 4.

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Wednesday, February 13, 2013

“the letter killeth, the spirit vivifieth"

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Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Three More Ruffians

"In the Christian and chief of all systems, since it comprehends and re-expresses all the others, the greatest of the Exemplars died at the hands of the mob, headed also by three chief ruffians, Judas, Caiaphas and Pilate."

- Walter Leslie Wilmshurst


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Saturday, February 9, 2013

The Seven Stars

Seek him that maketh the seven stars and Orion, and turneth the shadow of death into the morning, and maketh the day dark with night: that calleth for the waters of the sea, and poureth them out upon the face of the earth: The Lord is his name:

Amos 5:8

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Sunday, February 3, 2013

Saturday, February 2, 2013

How Will You Be Tried

By Gary L

All too often, we as Master Masons become so wrapped up in the esoteric side of Masonry that we have a tendency to forget about something as simple as “etiquette”. We haplessly approach the Brother in the club or the exchange wearing a Masonic hat, ring, or t-shirt and attempt to test his legitimacy as a Master Mason by one or all of the following means:

1. Throwing him a sign and waiting for a response,

2. Shaking his handle in search of a “Token”,

3. Attempting to have him perform the Entered Apprentice lecture,

4. Asking for his dues card, or

5. Reciting the first line of some Masonic catchecism he may or may not be familiar with.

Each of these are legitimate ways of finding out if he’s the man he claims to be, and are probably taught to every up and coming Master Mason as the correct way to “Try” a Brother. However, in some cases either of these exchanges could result in a not so pleasant meeting or first impression due to the over aggressiveness of the Brother doing the examining or the unwillingness of the Brother to be tried in public.

Furthermore, in accordance with his Fellowcraft obligation the Brother may feel that answering the sign would not be “in the square and angle of his work”.

There are countless members of our society whose natural handshake either closely resemble or are exact replicas of our sacred grip; never mind the fact that the Center for Cult Research and Investigation has published all of the signs, grips, and words of Ancient Craft Masonry on the internet, complete with illustrations and explanations straight out of a Duncan's Ritual, which can be purchased at your local bookstore.

The average age of most non-military Masonic Lodges is approximately 67.5 years old. I can guarantee you that a majority of these learned Brothers could teach you an awful lot about Masonry but the EA, FC, or MM lectures have probably been long forgotten. As a matter of fact, many young and newly Raised Master Masons will have forgotten the details of the mini lectures.

“Mine for yours?” is normally the proper way to ask a Brother for his dues card to see if he is current in his Blue Lodge. Sounds reasonable, but how difficult could it be for someone to obtain a Masonic dues card? With the amount of Masonic paraphernalia found in pawn shops who knows what these same Brothers do with their membership cards. More importantly, just as we sometimes lose or forget our drivers license, military identification, ATM, or club card we might also be without our dues card at the time we are accosted by another Brother.



“Who’s your Mother” is usually the most common way of asking a Brother from what lodge he hails. Not all Master Masons are familiar with the 1001 Masonic catch phrases and some frankly are offended by their use and or abuse.

Does either of these situations fairly determine if a Brother is worthy of the Light he is wearing?

While lawfully speaking each of these attempts are perfectly okay and in no way considered out of line; there exists a better way of approaching and greeting a fellow “Traveling Man”. Try this:

“ Excuse me my Brother, I see you have Traveled some; welcome to Okinawa, I’m Brother Wright from Torii Lodge #46, Home of the Thoroughbreds out of Okinawa Japan of the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Washington and Jurisdiction…from where do you hail?”

This warm welcome is likely to create a non-aggressive environment and will result in friendly exchange of information, as the Brother is likely to answer with his Mother Lodge and Jurisdiction. After which he may offer his right hand in token of friendship and Brotherly love along with a token of a Master Mason, start a conversation about the principles of Masonry and even inquire about your meeting times. This type of practical and courteous exchange will be much better received and will allow you obtain the exact same information as the methods discussed above.

Ensure you exchange personal contact information with this Brother and set up a time to meet and talk with him again before inviting him to your lodge as a visitor. This is really the time when you may determine his genuiness by holding further conversations about Masonic principles and doctrine, his personal involvement with his Lodge, and his thoughts and feelings about the state of Masonry in today’s society.

Be sure to inform him that as a visitor you will not be able to vouch for him as you have never sat together in open lodge, but he will be required to provide a current dues card and undergo an examination to include the signs, grips, and words of the 3 degrees. If he is nonaffiliated explain to him the proper procedures for being reinstated in his Mother lodge and if he so chooses the procedures for demission (See last weeks lecture: Finding Your Way Home). This approach will be successful in building a positive fraternal relationship and allow the Brother to truly Travel in foreign countries while in search of more light in Masonry.

Ultimately, a Master Masons worthiness is determined by his stature in his community and his character as an upright man. With this in mind we should ever strive to meet on the level, act by the plumb, part on the square and live our lives in accordance with the Divine Guidance of the G.A.O.T.U who will ultimately determine “How you will be Tried!”

“Remember that our cause is one and we must work together if we would succeed.”

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Canterbury Cathedral


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