A.F.& A.M. vs F.& A.M

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posted on Dec, 10 2004 @ 02:34 PM
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What is the difference between Ancient Free and Accepted Masons and Free and Accepted Masons? I know there is a difference, and I know it has been explained here before (no doubt by Masonic Light
), but it was on a tangent in an unrelated thread and I couldn't find it.

I was not able to get initiated here in Arkansas because I will be moving away before the time would come. The lodge here is F.& A.M, and the lodge I will probably be joining in Texas is A.F.& A.M.

I am told there will be about twice as much memory work in Texas as opposed to Arkansas. Is that because of the Ancient thing?

Thanks




posted on Dec, 10 2004 @ 04:10 PM
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Originally posted by The Axeman
What is the difference between Ancient Free and Accepted Masons and Free and Accepted Masons? I know there is a difference, and I know it has been explained here before (no doubt by Masonic Light
), but it was on a tangent in an unrelated thread and I couldn't find it.


In the early 18th century, the premiere Grand Lodge of England (Free and Accepted Masons) met a rival: the Grand Lodge of Antient York Masons, composed mostly of Irishmen. The F. & A.M. Grand Lodge was the "original" one, formed in 1717; however, some modern researchers are coming to the conclusion that the A.Y.M. Grand Lodge may have been even older, just less popular.

Both of these English Grand Lodges chartered Lodges and Grand Lodges in the USA; and the F&AM's and AYM's refused to recognize each other. Therefore, many US states had two rival Grand Lodges.

The major difference was the Royal Arch Degree and the traditional passwords of the first three degrees. The F&AM'ers changed their passwords so that the AYM'ers couldn't get into their Lodges. This led the AYM'ers to accuse the F&AM'ers of making modern innovations in Masonry, by disregarding ancient customs. This is why the F&AM'ers began to be called "Moderns" and the AYM'ers "Antients" (because they stuck to the ancient customs).

Secondly, the Ancients conferred the Royal Arch Degree on all Past Masters, while the Moderns refused to recognize the degree. In reality, the Royal Arch Degree is simply an expansion on an early version of the Third Degree which the Moderns had revised and excluded.

Finally, the schism in England was healed. The two Grand Lodges merged, giving birth to today's United Grand Lodge of England, and decided to use the traditional words and grips. The United Grand Lodge of England's policy toward the Royal Arch is as follows: "Pure antient Masonry consists of only three degrees, viz., Entered Apprentice, Fellow Craft, and Master Mason, which includes the Supreme Order of the Holy Royal Arch."

In the US, those Grand Lodges that have an "Ancient" in their title are the result of a merger between F&AM and AYM. AYM didn't extend to all the states, so several states are still simply F&AM.

Today, there are no real differences between AFAM and FAM, as all of them have adopted the consolidation resolutions first used by the United Grand Lodge of England. Each state has a slightly different ritual, but the differences are minimal.

[edit on 10-12-2004 by Masonic Light]



posted on Dec, 10 2004 @ 04:28 PM
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Thanks ML, I knew I could ount on you for a good explanation.

So tell me if I've got this; they are essentially the same, the difference in name is just a residual effect of the schism between the F&AM and the AYM, and there's no real difference other than the small stuff that's different say, from state to state in the US? I know that Masonry is generally the same everywhere, but different lodges have different ways of doing things.

Basically What I'm asking is if it will make a difference in the experience to go one way or the other, or if they are generally the same. One of the gentlemen at the stated meeting I went to last night was telling me he had moved from Kansas, from an AF&AM lodge to the one here which is F&AM, and that there were alot of differences, like the F&AM were alot more liberal about their ritual in comparison with AF&AM, like they could "get by" with more, or that the F&AM was more lenient with regard to ritual and the way things are done.

This is a big deal to me, and I want the experience to be the best possible. I just wanted to get clarification before going one way or the other.

Also, about the memory work, I understand some lodges have "ciphers" and others do not, it is all from memory and passed down verbally. Is this true? If so, is that regulated by the Grand Lodge, or by individual local lodges?



posted on Dec, 10 2004 @ 06:02 PM
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If the Grand Lodge of Kansas is AF&AM then all lodges in Kansas will be.
If the Grand Lodge of Arkansas is F&AM then all lodges in Arkansa will be.
Even if the F&AM in Arkansas are more liberal, I believe the experience will still be one to treasure.
I personally am from Oregon which Grand Lodge is an AF&AM, and am a memeber of a lodge here, which I feel is fairly "liberal". I honestly believe however that it depends on the individual lodge. As far as ciphers are concerned, the Grand Lodge decides that. Oregon does use cipher books. I don't know about Texas but different states use different types of ciphers if they use them at all. They're not that difficult to figure out as you have a coach to help.



posted on Dec, 10 2004 @ 06:25 PM
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I just found out that in Texas it apparently is "mouth to ear" with no cipher books. They can be purchased through various sources as can anything these days, but they are not authoized. I would not recommend using them in Texas.

That's probably why there's "twice as much memeory work".

[edit on 12/10/2004 by cotwom]

[edit on 12/10/2004 by cotwom]



posted on Dec, 10 2004 @ 07:08 PM
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Thanks for the input, I appreciate it. From what I understand, Arkansas is mouth to ear as well. They do use monitors I think, but no ciphers...

I am sure it would be a worthwhile and treasured experience either way, but I am inclined to want to study more, and get more in depth with the esoteric aspects of Masonry once I'm initiated. That is one of the reasons for my query. I do plan on joining at least two if not more appendant bodies once eligible as well (Scottish Rite and the Shrine), as I know that there is much more to learn and knowledge is one of the reasons I want to become a Mason, to gain the knowledge that is presented, and use that knowledge to try to enhance my life and the lives of those around me. I just wanted to know, bearing that in mind, if it mattered one way or the other. Turns out it doesn't matter, because as you said, all lodges in Texas will be AF&AM, so there you have it. AF&AM it is!

Thanks for your help, though...


Do you happen to know how long the waiting period is in Texas to put in your petition after you establish residency?



posted on Dec, 10 2004 @ 09:55 PM
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Here's a link for the Grand Lodge of Texas
Petition Info.

www.grandlodgeoftexas.org...

I know in some states there's a minimum residency of 1 year, but I don't see that mentioned as a requirement for Texas.

Anyhow, I look forward to calling you Brother!

by the way... when you get to Texas, if you fill the petition online, I'd call the Grand Lodge to make sure they got it. If not, ask for the phone number for the secretary of the lodge closest to you. That's what I did.
They'll review the petition at their next stated meeting. Then they'll have an investigative commitee making sure not a wanted fellon, or serial {fill in the blank}. That could take about 1-2 months depending on when you turn in the petition in realtion to the stated meeting. Then there's a VERY informal interview. They just make sure you believe in a supreme being, why your intersted...be honest and not textbook. BE YOURSELF. From therem maybe 2 weeks later, you might have your initiation.
[edit on 12/10/2004 by cotwom]

[edit on 12/10/2004 by cotwom]



posted on Dec, 11 2004 @ 12:09 PM
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Yeah, I just went through all that here in Arkansas. The investigation guys came and talked with me and everything, I'm just moving before it would be logistically possible to do the ceremony. It's OK though, because I'm all set to meet up with a brother when I get down there, he's told me that he'll tell the WM and we'll go from there. There's 2 lodges n the town, so I'll probably check out both (just to see about demographics) while the waiting period passes. I'll get to know them, let them get to know me, and then hand in the petition personally. The aforementioned brother is checking to see about the waiting period for me.

Thanks for the info though, and I look forward to calling you brother as well.



posted on Dec, 12 2004 @ 07:52 AM
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Originally posted by The Axeman
Yeah, I just went through all that here in Arkansas. The investigation guys came and talked with me and everything, I'm just moving before it would be logistically possible to do the ceremony. It's OK though, because I'm all set to meet up with a brother when I get down there, he's told me that he'll tell the WM and we'll go from there. There's 2 lodges n the town, so I'll probably check out both (just to see about demographics) while the waiting period passes. I'll get to know them, let them get to know me, and then hand in the petition personally. The aforementioned brother is checking to see about the waiting period for me.

Thanks for the info though, and I look forward to calling you brother as well.


I wasn't aware that you can visit the Lodge before coming a member. What do you do just catch them before the meeting begins in the parking lot?

You aren't moving to Texas just to go to an AF&AM lodge are you? I have wondered what the difference between AF&AM and AF&M is myself.



posted on Dec, 12 2004 @ 10:49 AM
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Originally posted by TgSoe
I wasn't aware that you can visit the Lodge before coming a member. What do you do just catch them before the meeting begins in the parking lot?

You aren't moving to Texas just to go to an AF&AM lodge are you? I have wondered what the difference between AF&AM and AF&M is myself.



No, no, no my friend. I'm transferring to my company's office there. I was all set to join here, would have been initiated (more than likely; I had not been voted on yet but I had no reason to believe that I wouldn't have been accepted). I was just asking because one of the gentlemen I talked to at the lodge said that it was *different* in the respect that there's more memory work, the AF&AM lodges tend to lean more toward Strict Observance, and the F&AM is a little more liberal. I knew just who to ask about it, that's why I posted it here.


As far as going to the lodge? Yes, you can just go down there. I would just go down there an hour or so before their stated meeting and talk with them before they went into Lodge. They will welcome you, I guarantee it. Talk to them, just tell them that you are interested, they'll probably ask you "How did you hear about Masonry" (the first time I showed up before a stated meeting I was asked that very question probably 8-10 times
), But if you are interested, they'll talk to you about it. I was told that alot of times the secretaries have a hard time returning calls, maybe this is the case where you are, I don't know. But just go talk to them. Why not?






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