It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

I want to join but I have questions for existing freemasons

page: 1
0
<<   2  3 >>

log in

join
share:

posted on Aug, 31 2005 @ 03:52 PM
link   
I would primarily like to hear from current freemasons. Although I would like to hear from those who have advanced to the 4th degree or above in the Scottish Rite, any degree mason may be able to answer.

I would like to join freemasonry. I have a few questions:

#1.
It appears that advancing to the Master degree can be done on one's own ambition. I have heard, however, that a mason must be invited to join the Scottish Rite, and simply cannot just join himself. Also, I have heard that there are a few main degrees where you may not be allowed to advance anymore, namely the 18th and the 30th degrees. The reasons that I heard are that they restrict the membership in those degrees to a limited number. Is this true? I want to be able to advance all the way so that I can learn as much as freemasonry has to teach, but I really don't want to dedicate years of my life to learn that I can only advance as far as the Council allows me to.

#2.
I understand that there are lodge dues to be paid, and an initiation fee. That is understandable - someone has to pay the electricity bills. Do the dues increase with every degree you obtain? I am poor, but I think I can afford a little bit each year. I want to learn as much as I can, but I don't want to pay through the nose to do so.

#3.
Are there fees to advance from one degree to the next? For example, I know there is a fee to join freemasonry and become an Entered Apprentice. Is there a fee I would have to pay to advance from an EA to a Fellow Craft? If there are fees, do they increase with every degree?

#4.
Freemasonry has an extensive literature selection. In the higher degrees of the Scottish Rite, they have you read information about Hermetic stuff. I assume that it's solely to educate a mason about history and the origins of masonic symbolism. Are you expected to actually PRACTICE any of the Hermetic Magic stuff?

Thanks for your time. If you don't know an answer, that's okay - please don't try to make anything up. These questions come from people with slight anti-masonic tendencies. They claim that you can only advance to the highest degree of freemasonry if you are rich and have high social status - that is why they claim that the degrees get more and more costly and that people without high social status are stuck in the middle degrees. Lastly, some people say that freemasons are Baphomet worshippers, but that seems to be a Crowley thing, and not associated with freemasonry. Please clear any information up for me.




posted on Aug, 31 2005 @ 04:05 PM
link   

Originally posted by trinitrotoluene


#1.
It appears that advancing to the Master degree can be done on one's own ambition. I have heard, however, that a mason must be invited to join the Scottish Rite, and simply cannot just join himself. Also, I have heard that there are a few main degrees where you may not be allowed to advance anymore, namely the 18th and the 30th degrees. The reasons that I heard are that they restrict the membership in those degrees to a limited number. Is this true? I want to be able to advance all the way so that I can learn as much as freemasonry has to teach, but I really don't want to dedicate years of my life to learn that I can only advance as far as the Council allows me to.


It all depends on where you live. If you live in the USA, Southern Jurisdiction, you apply for the 4° - 32° whenever you want, after becoming a Master Mason. These degrees are usually conferred back-to-back in marathon sessions called "Reunions" that usually last a couple of weekends. Practically all members of the Scottish Rite in the US hold at least the 32°. After the 32°, there are three honors bestowed by the Supreme Council in recognition for service: Knight Commander of the Court of Honour, the 33°, and the highest honor, Grand Cross of the Court of Honour.

If, however, you are in the UK, it is my understanding that the Rite is invitational only, and also that it only admits Christians. There, most stop at the 18°, with the higher degrees being honorary.


#2.
I understand that there are lodge dues to be paid, and an initiation fee. That is understandable - someone has to pay the electricity bills. Do the dues increase with every degree you obtain? I am poor, but I think I can afford a little bit each year. I want to learn as much as I can, but I don't want to pay through the nose to do so.


My initiation fees for the Scottish Rite, S.J., USA, in my particular Valley were about $250, which covered the 4° - 32°, plus my 14° ring. After receiving the 32°, members of my Temple pay $55 per year in dues.


#3.
Are there fees to advance from one degree to the next? For example, I know there is a fee to join freemasonry and become an Entered Apprentice. Is there a fee I would have to pay to advance from an EA to a Fellow Craft? If there are fees, do they increase with every degree?


My Lodge charges $40 petition fee, then $30 for each of the Blue Lodge degrees, for a total of $130 to get to the degree of Master Mason. Once a Master Mason, Blue Lodge dues in my Lodge are $30 per year, or $15 per year for Past Mast Masters.


#4.
Freemasonry has an extensive literature selection. In the higher degrees of the Scottish Rite, they have you read information about Hermetic stuff. I assume that it's solely to educate a mason about history and the origins of masonic symbolism. Are you expected to actually PRACTICE any of the Hermetic Magic stuff?


The Scottish Rite teaches a wide range of ideas. The individual Mason may choose to study a particular thing further if it interests him, or choose not to. It's up to the individual.


They claim that you can only advance to the highest degree of freemasonry if you are rich and have high social status - that is why they claim that the degrees get more and more costly and that people without high social status are stuck in the middle degrees.


It really has nothing to do with money, and everything to do with service. In the US, all Scottish Rite Masons are at least 32°. If a member is dedicated, he will eventually receive honors from the Supreme Council.



posted on Aug, 31 2005 @ 04:11 PM
link   
It is pretty much as Masonic Light has said. Also in the York Rite all you have to do is ask for a petition.



posted on Aug, 31 2005 @ 04:17 PM
link   
Wow! Great information! Thank you! Very helpful. Thank you both.



posted on Aug, 31 2005 @ 04:45 PM
link   

Originally posted by trinitrotoluene
Freemasonry has an extensive literature selection. In the higher degrees of the Scottish Rite, they have you read information about Hermetic stuff. I assume that it's solely to educate a mason about history and the origins of masonic symbolism. Are you expected to actually PRACTICE any of the Hermetic Magic stuff?


This particular question caught my attention. You must understand that one of the Scottish Rite's main philosophies is that all religions/cultures/belief systems provide SOME bit of truth and light. But no mason is EVER expected to practice/believe/subscribe to any religion, philosophy or belief. That is silly conspiracy theory stuff.

We need not be practicioners of a religion in order to learn what truths it might have to tell.



posted on Aug, 31 2005 @ 05:08 PM
link   

Originally posted by sebatwerk

This particular question caught my attention. You must understand that one of the Scottish Rite's main philosophies is that all religions/cultures/belief systems provide SOME bit of truth and light. But no mason is EVER expected to practice/believe/subscribe to any religion, philosophy or belief. That is silly conspiracy theory stuff.

We need not be practicioners of a religion in order to learn what truths it might have to tell.


That is a very informative way of putting it. Some people try to say that masonry teaches that all paths lead to God. It appears that in reality, masonry tries to find the good things in all religions and teach these good principles to good men. I am LDS and my church leaders encourage us to "seek after anything that is beautiful, of good report, or praiseworthy." In fact they have written articles about the good things that other religions believe in. They don't say that all roads lead to God, but they don't condemn other beliefs either.

I don't mind reading about other stuff. I almost took a World Religion class at my university just to hear about different viewpoints. It appears that is what masonry can also provide - a nice overview of different beliefs. Thanks for the added info.



posted on Aug, 31 2005 @ 06:08 PM
link   
...forgive me if I step in...

>You must understand that one of the Scottish
>Rite's main philosophies is

I had always assumed that Masonry, as an organization, was not so much a teaching, or indoctrinating body as simply a group of like minded individuals who, over time, began to ask spiritually important questions of themselves. And that presumably over time, they started coming up with answers. My impression though, was again...that these "answers" were not taught in Masonry, but rather that Masons simply created a social and intellectual environment for their follow members which was condusive to helping people come up with those answers themselves.

So...the question is...which is a more accurate model:

"Subgroup N of Freemasonry generally subscribes to these beliefs, and teaches and promulgates those beliefs amongst its members."

...or...

"Subgroup N of Freemasonry generally subscribes to these beliefs, and therefore it is the Masons who have come to believe those same things who tend to join subgroup N rather than Subgroup M...which is generally joined by Masons of other beliefs instead."

>But no mason is EVER expected to practice/believe/subscribe
>to any religion, philosophy or belief.

Wait...is this always true? I was under the impression that certain rites only accepted members who professed to certain beliefs. For instance, aren't the Knights Templar required to take a Christian oath?

...other questions...

Regarding the symbols of Masonry...why? Would you say that the symbols are taught with the hope that some small percentage of Masons will come to understand them well enough to be able to discern certain true relationships amongst things? Or is it more to allow Masons to use the symbols to construct reminders of the spiritual truths they may be used to convey? Something else? I have a difficult time believing that the whole of Masonic symbolism would be exclusively to help keep it a private club, however much it may also serve that purpose.

A question for trinitrotoluene. (Sorry...I'm out of glycerine.
)

Why exactly do you want to join Masonry? Really why? I mean...personally, if none of the "conspiracy theories" are true, I think that would make membership far less appealing.
Seriously though...what is it you expect to get out of membership? Camaraderie? Are you looking for a social club? Is it the title you're after? Do you think it would be "neat" to call yourself by a fancy title like "Master Mason?" Are you hoping to learn greater spiritual truths? Why would you choose Masonry to teach those truths?

Sebatwerk, Masonic Light...anyone else who is Mason...what about you? Why did you join? Originally?

I can think of other questions. But, let's stick with these for now.

Thank you for your time.



[edit on 31-8-2005 by LordBucket]



posted on Sep, 1 2005 @ 10:01 AM
link   

Originally posted by LordBucket

I had always assumed that Masonry, as an organization, was not so much a teaching, or indoctrinating body as simply a group of like minded individuals who, over time, began to ask spiritually important questions of themselves. And that presumably over time, they started coming up with answers. My impression though, was again...that these "answers" were not taught in Masonry, but rather that Masons simply created a social and intellectual environment for their follow members which was condusive to helping people come up with those answers themselves.


I think that what you just wrote is an excellent summary. The teaching of the fraternity falls under several different categories. For example, it is expected that allMasons follow the strict moral teachings of the fraternity, but the other teachings are given as a matter of comparative knowledge. To elaborate, in the Scottish Rite, the basics of several different philosophical systems are taught, not for the purpose of indoctrinating candidates into them, but for educational purposes. That is why some of the information in Pike's Morals and Dogma is contradictory. He's not necessarily himself agreeing with the beliefs that he writes about, but presents them for the purpose of understanding, and leaves it to the individual to decide for himself.


Wait...is this always true? I was under the impression that certain rites only accepted members who professed to certain beliefs. For instance, aren't the Knights Templar required to take a Christian oath?


That is true. Freemasonry was originally a Christian institution. Eventually, the Craft (who were all at this time Christians) decided that they did a disservice by discriminating against people due to religious belief. However, strong Christian components remain throughout the entire fraternity, with many degrees being exclusively Christian in nature.


Regarding the symbols of Masonry...why? Would you say that the symbols are taught with the hope that some small percentage of Masons will come to understand them well enough to be able to discern certain true relationships amongst things? Or is it more to allow Masons to use the symbols to construct reminders of the spiritual truths they may be used to convey? Something else? I have a difficult time believing that the whole of Masonic symbolism would be exclusively to help keep it a private club, however much it may also serve that purpose.


The actual symbolism and its interpretations have never been private. The only problem is that many disagree on the "true" interpretations. Some consider the definitions given in the ritual to be correct, while others believe they have deeper philosophical meanings. It is my opinion that both are correct, that the symbols have both superficial and abstract meanings.


Sebatwerk, Masonic Light...anyone else who is Mason...what about you? Why did you join? Originally?


I had studied the Qabalah, and became interested in Pike's contributions to Qabalistic studies. After reading a couple of his books, I decided that Masonry was a good thing to be involved in, at least inasmuch as one is interested in symbolism and philosophy.



posted on Sep, 1 2005 @ 12:13 PM
link   

Originally posted by LordBucket
>But no mason is EVER expected to practice/believe/subscribe
>to any religion, philosophy or belief.

Wait...is this always true? I was under the impression that certain rites only accepted members who professed to certain beliefs. For instance, aren't the Knights Templar required to take a Christian oath?


Like ML stated, there are many Christian overtones left in Freemasonry from a time in which all masons were predominantly Christian. The Templar oath is an oath to PROTECT and DEFEND Christianity, not to practice or even believe in it. But, in some cases in parts of Freemasonry, it seems like it is expected that the mason be a Christian.



Regarding the symbols of Masonry...why? Would you say that the symbols are taught with the hope that some small percentage of Masons will come to understand them well enough to be able to discern certain true relationships amongst things? Or is it more to allow Masons to use the symbols to construct reminders of the spiritual truths they may be used to convey?


The answer is most definitely your second guess. Masonic symbols are used to illustrate the principles of Freemasonry, and serve as a reminder of those lessons we were taught during our initiations. For example, I wear my ring with a Square and Compass as a reminder of my obligations. I carry a keychain with a skull and crossbones between two columns to remind me of my third degree raising. The same is true of most masons.



Sebatwerk, Masonic Light...anyone else who is Mason...what about you? Why did you join? Originally?


I joined because I wanted to be part of something special, mysterious and something far bigger than myself. I wanted to be part of something that great men in the past saw as a big part of their lives, and I wanted to know exactly why such great men saw Freemasonry in that way. I wanted to walk in their footsteps and learn what they learned. Additionally, I wanted to be part of a lifelong fraternity of men who truly care about each other and who have strong bonds that cross all boundaries of culture, religion and race.



posted on Sep, 3 2005 @ 01:36 AM
link   
I have a few answers.

1. Once you become a Master Mason in my area you will receive applications for both the Scottish Rite and York Rites. There is nothing you need do to be invited. This of course depends on the area in which you are becoming a Mason. But like Masonry the Constitory and Shrine, etc. seek out members in order to get dues money etc. They do not restrict the membership in those groups in CO.


2. Lodge dues are basically the same every year. The Grand Lodge can change per-capita and that charge is usually passed on to the member. Therefore our Dues bills have raised each year by $1 since I became a member. They are usually not overly large, but it depends on your lodge as they can charge whatever dues the members vote in. Initiation fees usually cover your first year's dues, and other stuff the Lodge buys for you, there usually isn't a whole lot of profit for the lodge in collecting those fees. However each group outside the Lodge, Shrine, Consistory etc. also charges dues, those are usually heftier than the Lodge Dues and since they are separate organizations they do not include your Lodge Dues within them.

3. Usually the Lodge charges one fee for all three of the Degrees, this fee can be separated out though. This, once again, depends on your area. There are fees to join those outside groups as well.

4. No.


And any man can become one of the highest degrees regardless of social status. Some men have friends that pay their fees for them to join the Shrine and other outside groups.



posted on Sep, 3 2005 @ 08:07 AM
link   
There are many Masonic orders - some of which require membership of a lower order as a prerequisit to joining - and also require that this membership be maintained.
In this manner it is very likely that a Mason could be a member of three or more orders. Given the amount of ritual to learn - the average person would probably find it difficult to allocate sufficient for a serious commitment to more.
There will be some costs associated with regalia - and progression in some orders may take some time as they don't meet very frequently - unlike 'craft' lodges that usually meet once a month.



posted on Sep, 3 2005 @ 08:25 AM
link   
Yawn...how many more of these "impartial" RFQs is this board going to field?
If you want to hear from existing Freemasons then on over to MasonicInfo.com or some other official mouthpiece from the cult.
In case you hadn't noticed this is a Conspiracies and Secret Societies forum, largely habitated by disinformation droids from the ol' one-trouser-leg gang but sparingly sprinked with ex-cult members and even the occasional poorpeople like me who had this "fraternity" try to ruin their life.



(mod edit - please do not Circumvent the cencors)

[edit on 3-9-2005 by asala]



posted on Sep, 3 2005 @ 11:14 AM
link   
[edited post, issued warning for this and previous post, which was deleted, and contained threats -nygdan]

[edit on 7-9-2005 by Nygdan]



posted on Sep, 3 2005 @ 02:55 PM
link   

Originally posted by MrNECROS
and even the occasional poorpeople like me who had this "fraternity" try to ruin their life.


Oh sure dude, you're sooooooooo a victim! Give it up man, between the snide remarks and the knowingly false information you continually post about Freemasonry, there's nothing motivating you other than a very obvious agenda against Freemasonry. This couldn't be because you tried to join a lodge and were rejected, could it?



posted on Sep, 4 2005 @ 12:52 PM
link   
As I lay down in bed no more than a forteanite past, my left hand writ the following as I sleep under sorrows and earthly tribulations. I awoke to find the passage as follows and my right(eous) hand murdered in lustful haste by the other aforementioned awful author-ous appendage........................:

He sayeth that all be'eth inviteth to thee barbeque-O. Taketh as many pamphletheths as you liketh. Shaketh hands and introduceth yourself'th. Eateth more'th. The not-so-black mass is far into'th the future sort. So now enjoy your freezer patties and tube steaks and slaw and aluminum containers and orange-aid from the large yellow container. All democrats know the secrets of all democrats. All republicans know the white house towels and creeky floorboards. The grunting soldier hacks tubors for porridge and evaluates the bigger picture from such a vantage point of wisdom. Time ceases and trust thrusts blindly into brains and burrows.

TAKE MY HAND for my promises are real. I swear'th under swords and keys and skulls and stars and robes and so many other extra-special secret guises. You have led yourself here, to take'th mustard and ketchup for your bun in the line of worthy millions and minions. The sun doth not'th shine'th inside the chamber. Gas'th your whimsical cars and boats and proudly ye shall ride behind the high school band yet always before the beauty queen and before the hands strike three times. So you have now seen the sign have you? For now you surely have a sign to show.

Show'th me the way'th for I know'th not'th upon my own'th. I too'th can be great'th. Study young yogi master bear naked trumped apprentice and you too'th shall own'th the saber of secret and ultimate'th divine righteous double-secretive special and extra-special and most saucy knowledge of knowledges and keeper of keepers and prognosticator of prognosticators. MERE MORTALS KNOW NOT WHAT THEY DON'T KNOW('th). Their fathers played ball with them only far too much so and thus are not wanting to belong to our majestical order of orders and four square of four squares. One and three and eleven and thirteen and 42 and six nine and 38 or 35 or 30 but after 24 or 21 or 18 or 17 or by two to 18 but so even 13 in the deepeth southern provinces of the law.

THE TEMPERATURE BE'ETH IN THE DEGREES. The degrees lead to 33s. YOU TOO can be blinded by the sun and also too a genius you can pretend to be. Behold the ruler, the T-square, the plier and the wrench. This knowledge is solid and coat'th with reason teflon. Reason be gone. Reason taught by unknowing fools in this wonderous world. Reason be gone. Demons OU-T!!! Walk in the light without fear and by the yin and yang fear not the echoing darkness.

Raise'th your left hand and welcometh all that ye be moreso over not for all be like ye Gods be they baphomet, beelzebubba, ra, ku, ka, kibbitz, kibble, salami, speeketh not of Jesus for only nod so into agreement herein enter the chamber of dark gobbedly-gook, buddah, babies' blood, the serpent, mutations of mutations, and 70 cosmotological virgins shall'th comb your hair in a pyramid of geometric divinity while harpsters play'th classical brother joy and dance of happy happy joy and extra happy happy joy joy. Wink wink nudge nudge one of us one of us.

OH behld the sacred WARM FUZZIES you'll find inside. All books being equal, lay down your bibles, your manifestos, your baphomet babblings together and side by side and become happy to pray next to all the prayer-less, the blasphemed, the blasphemors, and righteous BLA and Double Bla Bla. Shuffle them all for they be paper. Read them not for they be paper from indirect hands. Understand this maze not. Ask questions not and trust all good knowing brothers within the circle of specialness.

Embrace'th technicalities in matters of discussion and obstruction and trusteth know-one who know'eth not thee secretive third eye of hee-haw and the great sha-nana-na bop-be-do-dippity. Roll in the corn under the watchful EYE. One eye. ONE EYE FOR T'OTHER HAS BEEN'TH PLUCKED OUT'TH BY THE TWO-HEADED CROW in search of holy corn.

AND now the not-so-black mass. Worship the worshipful master of all gods for he'th created all manly gods. For there is but one eye here upon the head of ONE other who rules the domain of terrestrial knowledge. A banished ruler with promises unspoken and yet true. Yes true.

Before ye go, have'th more barbeque while the little'ish ones play'th and here be'th another pamplet for ye sorrowful unknowing lifeless newbie. Take'th our offer of purpose lest ye die unknowing, unsung, and true.


[edit on 4-9-2005 by 2nd Hand Thoughts]



posted on Sep, 4 2005 @ 01:52 PM
link   
Note: I am NOT a mason.

Read these...

Light from the sanctuary of the Royal Arch - Usually available used at Amazon for $10

Mackey's Revised Encyclopedia of Freemasonry - Go to the library... you won't be able to check it out, but at $300 it may be out of range.

When you are done with those two texts (they should consume 6 months of your life) you should have a better understanding of Masonry. Then... if you still want to know more, knock on a lodge door.

I did so... then came to realize I was better off alone. Masonry was not the supreme path for me. Before you sign on... realize 1) that every group of wisdom has an overt agenda and a sub agenda. 2) You can increase your wisdom and power just as rapidly through self reflection as you could through brotherhoods.

An instrument in His hands,

Sri Oracle



posted on Sep, 4 2005 @ 02:44 PM
link   

Originally posted by Sri Oracle
I did so... then came to realize I was better off alone. Masonry was not the supreme path for me. ... You can increase your wisdom and power just as rapidly through self reflection as you could through brotherhoods.


While what you say is true, what is special about Freemasonry is not WHAT it teaches, but rather HOW it teaches it. Like we've stated many times, everything that Freemaosnry teaches is right there in the Bible, but what Freemasonry has done is developed a way of teaching these principles in a way that TRULY inculcates the lessons in the mind of the initiate.



posted on Sep, 5 2005 @ 12:24 AM
link   

Originally posted by sebatwerk
what Freemasonry has done is developed a way of teaching these principles in a way that TRULY inculcates the lessons in the mind of the initiate.


By the time I had knocked on the door, mystery had become transparent... the lessons were already solidified... I had other studies to master. I AM.

This is not to say however that masonry does not have its place. The spiritual path stretches endlessly in both directions. Masonry could certainly pull one toward the light.

My concern with the organization: Those who are given wisdom but never truly embrace its proper function to serve others. Such initiates could be pulled deeply into darkness through the craft. In my eyes, much better to decide upon altruism... then to gather the power within to execute True will.

Sri Oracle



posted on Sep, 5 2005 @ 02:57 AM
link   

Originally posted by Sri Oracle

Originally posted by sebatwerk
My concern with the organization: Those who are given wisdom but never truly embrace its proper function to serve others. Such initiates could be pulled deeply into darkness through the craft. In my eyes, much better to decide upon altruism... then to gather the power within to execute True will.


Ummmmm... perhaps you are referring to some other organization? Freemasonry does no such thing.



posted on Sep, 5 2005 @ 08:14 PM
link   
All I am saying is that the Craft increases the Will of the initiate as well as his Benevolency.

Should someone come to the Craft spiritually unready he may learn the lessons of tenacious attention but blind himself to the True Light of Love. Then you are left with a powerful man worshiping demigods. Every initiate cannot be a success. However, all learn lessons that make them more influential.

That concerns me.

Sri Oracle



new topics

top topics



 
0
<<   2  3 >>

log in

join