New Freemason, having some doubts

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posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 10:32 AM
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Originally posted by The Oak
Sorry that I spelled freemasonry with a hyphen. I am only an EA and noone has told me anything about how to properly spell it. I am not even sure what I am or am not suppose to talk about, I was only told not to show anyone the 1st degree handshake and sign. Other than that I wasn't told anything.


Don't worry about it. A lot of the guys on this board get fired up too easily. Seriously, guys, he asked an inoccent question; we all know that our group is a reflection of society, so there has to be racism, as we are all human.

I see no reason to have jumped all down his throat and insinuated from the first few replies that he was interloping. Even if he had been, tell me what kind of picture the first page of this thread paints?

I think the Anti-Masons are doing a good job, because we seem to be taking things way too personally and not reflecting long enough before responding, apparently. It seems they have caused us to become flustered and willing to snap out and think the worst of people without giving them a fair shake here, and that strikes me as a tad unMasonic.

Let's not let them get our goats...
(I'm sorry, I couldn't resist)


Maybe I am in the wrong lodge, because I get hammered on here for not knowing stuff I obviously should know. Apparently I have not received the proper education from the lodge.


It's not your fault, and sadly, it's probably common. In fact, according to my mentor, I knew more about Masonry as a candidate for the degrees than most of the active members of my lodge. My thanks to Masonic Light, et al for that.

Don't worry about it. Read. Learn. Find a good mentor and enjoy your Masonry.


On another point, I don't see why it is so wrong to learn about freemasonry from ATS. I have explored other websites, but I find the conversation on here more interesting. Like I stated previously, I felt I have learned quite a bit about freemasonry's ideals from reading masonic light and axeman's responses to the conspiracy theorists. To me they appear like subject experts regarding masonry, and their clear and reasonable rebuttals to the "conspiracy theorists" are what made interested in joining. Is that so wrong??


This is where I first started to learn about Masonry, and I know there are other Masons here that can say the same thing, so it's not all that outlandish a prospect as it seems to be to some.

And thanks for the kind words, but ML is the expert... I'm a student.


In response to your initial problem -- my advice is to find a brother who does not participate or condone this racist behavior in your lodge, and talk to him about it, on the level. As an EA, you ARE a Mason, and your concerns, issues, problems and opinions are just as important as anyone's. Find a mentor-type Brother, talk to him, and use your best judgement to handle the situation. I agree with the others who said that you won't make any friends if you go into lodge like a whirlwind and start berating their behavior.



A moral offence is sickness, pain, loss, dishonor, in the immortal part of man. It is guilt, and misery added to guilt. It is itself calamity; and brings upon itself, in addition, the calamity of God's disapproval, the abhorrence of all virtuous men, and the soul's own abhorrence. Deal faithfully, but patiently and tenderly, with this evil! It is no matter for petty provocation, nor for personal strife, nor for selfish irritation.

Speak kindly to your erring brother! God pities him: Christ has died for him: Providence waits for him: Heaven's mercy yearns toward him; and Heaven's spirits are ready to welcome him back with joy. Let your voice be in unison with all those powers that God is using for his recovery!

--Albert Pike, Morals and Dogma

Travel safely, and feel free to holler anytime.




posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 10:34 AM
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reply to post by Skyfloating
 


I wish I could give this post more stars.

I know I'm guilty of it too, but I think we all should take a step back and think about the weight of our words and choose them a little more carefully.

$0.02.



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 10:46 AM
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I see no problem with being skeptical of all this. It is quite obvious that this is not the best source to get real legitimate information about masonry. It is true that we have some brilliant masons here, and that a vast majority of the anti-masons are so absurd its comical. But it should be obvious that a forum dedicated to talking about secret societies with topics accusing masons of everything from devil worship to rape is probably not the best source of legitimate information, even with the good contributers. That people come here to post questions about the fraternity like this should seem odd. Does that mean its not real? No, but it does mean I'm going to examine the situation before assuming it is.

There isn't a need to decry it all as a conspiracy every time a thread like this happens, but I will continue to call out for careful examination of these type of threads. If that is offensive to the brethren, I apologize - but I cant let myself just take these sorts of things for granted.



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 11:00 AM
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Originally posted by The Axeman

Originally posted by The Oak

In response to your initial problem -- my advice is to find a brother who does not participate or condone this racist behavior in your lodge, and talk to him about it, on the level. As an EA, you ARE a Mason, and your concerns, issues, problems and opinions are just as important as anyone's. Find a mentor-type Brother, talk to him, and use your best judgement to handle the situation. I agree with the others who said that you won't make any friends if you go into lodge like a whirlwind and start berating their behavior.




Thank you for your advice Axeman. I think the course you suggested is the best for me to take. I will try and seek out a brother who is as dedicated to the craft as I hope to be.

To those who think I am secretly an anti-mason who started this thread to undermine masonry on ATS, I apologize. Maybe I went about this thread in the wrong way, but I can only say that I am as new to ATS as I am to freemasonry. Any injustices in my thread are the result of ignorance, on my part, of the subject matter and not of malevolence. I welcome any suggestions you can give me of excellent places to learn more about freemasonry.



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 11:21 AM
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Originally posted by LightinDarkness
I see no problem with being skeptical of all this.


Agreed. Nothing wrong with a healthy dose of skepticism.


It is quite obvious that this is not the best source to get real legitimate information about masonry.


I partially disagree. This is obviously not the best source, but it is a decent one, thanks to the Brethren here assembled. When I am going to research something controversial, the first place I go is to the nay-sayers. I look at what they perceive to be the problems and issues, and why they think it is a bad thing. Then, I go to the source material, to see what the group/product has to say for it/themselves. It makes sense to me but that's just the way I investigate. I'm sure it's different for everyone.


It is true that we have some brilliant masons here, and that a vast majority of the anti-masons are so absurd its comical. But it should be obvious that a forum dedicated to talking about secret societies with topics accusing masons of everything from devil worship to rape is probably not the best source of legitimate information, even with the good contributers.


Perhaps it is obvious to you, brother, but to some they may never have heard of Masonry before coming here. I ended up here from a google search a long time ago, researching a group that my Grandfathers belonged to. This was after reading Freemasonrywatch.org and all those other hateful sites. I came here and found a few knowledgeable brothers who were up-front, candid, and wicked sharp. That's why I stuck around and I can tell you there is a WEALTH of legitimate information about Masonry in these threads.


That people come here to post questions about the fraternity like this should seem odd. Does that mean its not real? No, but it does mean I'm going to examine the situation before assuming it is.


Out of the blue? Maybe. But the OP said himself that it was because of posters on THIS board that he chose to ask the question here. Couple that with the lack of direction/information from his lodge and it doesn't seem odd at all.

Specifically Masonic forums are obscure, and probably owe more to word of mouth than other forum sites. It doesn't surprise me a bit that he didn't know where to go with his question, being so new to the fraternity.


There isn't a need to decry it all as a conspiracy every time a thread like this happens, but I will continue to call out for careful examination of these type of threads. If that is offensive to the brethren, I apologize - but I cant let myself just take these sorts of things for granted.


I agree, there isn't. I also agree that careful examination is in order. What I don't like seeing is Masons jumping on the offensive so quickly -- I know, I do it too, I'm just saying. I've got my Common Gavel working, as I think we all should.


The Oak -- My pleasure. If no one in your lodge wants to take leadership position, that tells me your lodge needs leaders. Perhaps you are one of those? Don't be afraid to be an agent of change, just tread lightly and go about things the right way.

Check out this thread: www.abovetopsecret.com...

There are a lot of links to some good sites in the second post. There is also this discussion board, where questions of this sort may be better met.

Again, if you have any other questions, etc. feel free to holler. I'll u2u you my email address.



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 11:56 AM
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OP: Check out Freemason s For Dummies. Some people don't think it's a good book, but from my experience it gives a very good overall history and basic knowledge you should acquaitence youself with if you are going to discuss Lodge with brethern on the net. Hodapp (the author) does a very good job of giving you the "basics" and then stating how many jurisdictions do it differently.

It is of my understanding that voting of any kind is always done in a MM Lodge in the US (which I'm finding there are states that have different requirements).

As I haven't seen you locale I'm unable to find more information. However, if you are interested in seeing the brotherhood for more than the local good ole boys supper club then you're going to have to visit other Lodge's once you've completed your MM.

Or send any of the identified brethern on this site and enquire as to how you can efficiently alert your Grand Lodge to these actions without putting yourself in the political foray that will ensue.

Elections will be Thursday at my Lodge and I'm hoping to be made Worshipful Master for 2008. So feel free to send me a message and I'll be more than happy to help you. For those wondering I'm in Indiana, so all advice is based on Indiana rules and regulations with a large dose of help from the Internet Brethern.



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 11:58 AM
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Originally posted by The Axeman

I agree, there isn't. I also agree that careful examination is in order. What I don't like seeing is Masons jumping on the offensive so quickly -- I know, I do it too, I'm just saying. I've got my Common Gavel working, as I think we all should.


Sound advice Axeman, I will make an effort to temper any overt skeptisism on my part in the name of Fraternity. If there is truly a Brother in distress we should make a concerted effort to assist him.

Oak, when you have u2u capabilities please feel free to forward me any information you may have in regards this matter if you so choose. I happen to be on fairly good terms with the current Grand Master of our state as he is in the other lodge I am affiliated with. Perhaps he can contact your Grand Lodge without revealing names and make an inquiry or
simply make the Grand Staff aware of what is transpiring. This type of behavior is not to be condoned.

[edit on 11-12-2007 by AugustusMasonicus]



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 12:36 PM
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Oak

Please do not get discouraged, either by the state of your present knowledge (we have all been there) or by the one meeting. While much occurred that should not have I hope that it is not representative of all of the brothers in that lodge. Hopefully the brother who gave you the petition and/or your coach are more mainstream in their masonry. They would be my first step at this point in trying to regain your initial idealism.

When you have passed the threshold for U2Us please feel free to contact me and I will be happy to help in any way that I can.
Good luck, it will get better. The more you dig the more gold you will find.



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 04:27 PM
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Originally posted by dynamiclysane
OP: Check out Freemason s For Dummies. Some people don't think it's a good book, but from my experience it gives a very good overall history and basic knowledge you should acquaitence youself with if you are going to discuss Lodge with brethern on the net. Hodapp (the author) does a very good job of giving you the "basics" and then stating how many jurisdictions do it differently.


i think it's a pretty solid book, but unfortunately, the author has lost all credit with me. He's been featured on countless "specials" on the history channel and etc. He's got a pretty wide array of knowledge, but he seems to openly lie about some things, and deny many others. Understandable, but I'd rather someone say "no comment" then to lie.



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 07:04 PM
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I'm sorry for jumping in. But as Freemasons why do you guys come to ATS? Ironic no? I know you guys don't believe in the conspiracies, but at the same time most of those conspiracies involve higher degree Freemasons not 1st degrees.... I know some of you might already be in too deep. And that's fine. What type of experiences have you guys had that differ from popular belief of Freemasonry clubs?



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 07:24 PM
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Originally posted by BrokenEmpires
I'm sorry for jumping in. But as Freemasons why do you guys come to ATS?


I think the science forums are unsurpassed and enjoy reading them often.


Ironic no?


That would depend on your perspective.


I know you guys don't believe in the conspiracies,


I am sure many of the Masons here believe in certain conspiracies, just not the ones about the Fraternity.


but at the same time most of those conspiracies involve higher degree Freemasons not 1st degrees....


They do? Where did you happen to unearth this information? Care to provide some examples?


I know some of you might already be in too deep.


You do? If you do not mind me asking, what might we be deep into?


What type of experiences have you guys had that differ from popular belief of Freemasonry clubs?


I am having a hard time answering that as I do not know what you mean by Freemasonry clubs. Can you please elucidate further? Thank you.



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 07:33 PM
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Originally posted by BrokenEmpires
I'm sorry for jumping in. But as Freemasons why do you guys come to ATS?


For reasons as varied as anyone else comes to ATS. I honestly forget what it was that brought me here but (speaking for myself alone) I've stayed on the SS Forum to try to help correct misinformation or answer questions if the likes of Masonic Light or Trinityman or one of the other better-informed Masons haven't already been through. That and I'll pick up some understanding for myself along the way.


Originally posted by BrokenEmpires
Ironic no? I know you guys don't believe in the conspiracies, but at the same time most of those conspiracies involve higher degree Freemasons not 1st degrees....


As has been stated on ATS too many times to count, the "secrets" of Masonry (such as they are) have been in the public sphere for pushing 3 centuries; the Internet just facilitates the exchange of information a little more readily. And there's no higher degree in Masonry proper than Master Mason or 3rd Degree. The York and Scottish Rites are side rites with their own levels but that doesn't elevate them per se.



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 08:46 PM
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I have another question. Why does it seem like a lot of Freemasons are always in high positions of power. Not all but there are quite a few. Hense those crazy conspiracies....



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 09:37 PM
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reply to post by BrokenEmpires
 


That would be a hasty generalization as I have covered in my logical fallacies thread. There is no evidence to suggest that the proportion of masons "in power" is somehow greater than non-masons "in power" - of course, figuring out what in power means is an entirely different issue.



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 09:53 PM
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Originally posted by The Oak
I was lost about what was so funny until the junior warden explained to me that it "was Martin Luther COON day, and they would be celebrating his murder.


It really surprises me that there are people celebrating MLK's death. Unlike the JFK assassination, the MLK assassination has been proven in a court of law to be orchastrated by the US government as part of its COINTELPRO program.

You would think even rednecks would not be celebrating such a gloom event in US history.



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 10:06 PM
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Racism in the Masons you say? Who would have thought that.

Except perhaps the Prince Hall Masons, that is. Any of you Masons want to explain THAT?



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 10:08 PM
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Hello The Oak,

Ill tell you that Masonry is what you put into it, and just how sincerly you take the obligations towards your brothers.

As for the racial slur, it really depends where you are. If these brothers are close, and it is a small lodge, they get comfortable in what they say.

Ill grant you that type of behavior is unbecoming a mason.

The point made that you can not be in a lodge conducting business I dont remember as true. I know you as a EA are not allowed in the Fellowcraft or Masters lodge while called to order until you are initiated into that degree. You most certainly are allowed in the EA and are welcome to hear all that is discussed in that forum.

Masonry to me is a source of pride. I do not wear my ring most of the time because rings and construction work when mixed may improve my chances of losing a finger. I do greet men with the grip and am always looking to receive it in return. I know that I can go to any lodge in any town and find freindship and that I can trust those there at that lodge. It does not mean they are saintly or any better than the average person, but it does mean we share an obligation that most all masons will adhere to in regards to coming to the aid of a brother in distress.

Masons should strive to be better citizens and better people simply because it is what we are taught. Never arogant or above others, simply to act in a way we would want other people to act towards us.

I wish you well on your travels down lifes road and in your Masonic path.

Dont let others influence what you think masonry is about or what type of people we are. Look to your father and grandfather and see if their actions and charecter are what you admire overall in men. If so, you have found part of your answer to what masonry is. We are just men, nothing more nothing less that share something in common that is not open for everyone. You may not now, but as you go through your work stop and reflect on what you are learning, it is in the obligation and the work that you will in your heart become a mason.

Give my best to Hiram.



posted on Dec, 11 2007 @ 10:12 PM
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reply to post by sir_chancealot
 


Oh you mean the Prince Hall lodges which are recognized by every United States Grand Lodge save a very small few (who are quickly changing), and the same Prince Hall that anyone can join regardless of race? And the same other lodges which anyone can join regardless of race?

You might have had a point, but your about 100 years too late.

[edit on 11-12-2007 by LightinDarkness]



posted on Dec, 12 2007 @ 09:07 AM
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Originally posted by BrokenEmpires
I'm sorry for jumping in. But as Freemasons why do you guys come to ATS? Ironic no? I know you guys don't believe in the conspiracies, but at the same time most of those conspiracies involve higher degree Freemasons not 1st degrees.... I know some of you might already be in too deep. And that's fine. What type of experiences have you guys had that differ from popular belief of Freemasonry clubs?


It's not that I don't believe in "conspiracies"; obviously, conspiracies happen all the time. But I don't hold a "conspiratorial world view", and as a "high degree Mason" with years of service and leadership behind me, I'm familar with the workings of the Craft, and know that the organization is a fine one.



posted on Dec, 12 2007 @ 10:08 AM
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My 2 cents... Secret societies, clubs and such are for little men and women who do not have the courage or self-conviction to stand on their own. They need chronic validation that only comes from others with small character and shared self-doubt. They revel in the childish fact that only "they" understand their silly games and traditions and that they said nonsense is a mystery to those on the "outside."


PUH-leeeeeeeeeeeeeeez! If the stated purpose of these organizations were truthful then stronger willed humans would have the fortitude to engage in these activities in public forum, for the greater good of society instead of hiding behind their "lodge" or whatever other nonsense they want to call it. Sororities, Fraternaties etc... all the belweather of littel people who feel a need of acceptance that cannot otherwise come from forced fraternity of other members.

I feel very sad for you people - needing to lead such a sheltered existence in order to feel a part of something. It is very saddening that people like you cannot exult in the sense of brotherhood that society as whole is able to offer without all of the silly childishness of handshakes, alters, titles, ceremonies, and such.

As far as "watching me", I can only hope that you are. Perhaps you will learn something about being a complete person with the will and conviction to stand for who YOU are as a unique individual on the public stage for all to see. It is those of us able to make public our beliefs and celebrations that contribute to the growth and development of the human race and society as a whole. As human beings, we are one and one is a part of all. It is truly sad that you feel a need to separate yourselves from all of your brothers and sisters.

Oh, and by the way, my brother-in-law and his father are Masons as is one of my closest friends. I have been invited to join many, many times. What!/ And miss out on the greater human experience!? I wouldn't even think about it!





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