Originally posted by BluePillOrRedPill
Our "tour guide" mason then said "if you join this week and pay your dues, you could get your first three degrees all at the same time, at the
same ceremony, before summertime. Because the higher ups don't give out degrees in the summertime." But, why not in the summertime? Is my 350
dollar dues and degree fee going to be used for the higher ups to go on summer vacation? It was like $150-200 to join, and $50 dollars each degree.
It struck me as a little weird but i have enough money.
Why not in the summertime? A lot of the older lodge buildings don’t have air
conditioning, for one… And as my brother also mentioned, a lot of people travel with their families in the summer, and family comes before Masonry
in our duties, so yeah, a lot of times it could be hard to pull together a degree team. It has become tradition in many areas to have the lodge
“dark” in July & August…no meetings again until September.
The only lodge members who might receive a salary are usually the Secretary and sometimes the Tiler, I believe. The Secretary’s duties are almost
like a part-time job, and take a fair amount of work keeping up with paperwork to be sent to the Grand Lodge and such. I think the Secretary of my
lodge gets $200 a month. The notion of paying the Tiler goes back, I believe, to the occasions when the Tiler of a lodge might not be a member of that
lodge, but could be from another lodge, or even not a Mason at all. If I understand correctly, in the old days when some lodges met above taverns, the
tavernkeeper was paid a small amount to make sure the meeting was not interrupted. That tradition still goes on in some areas to this day.
Here is were i felt something telling me not to join the masons, even though i was really interested. I already knew about the induction
ceremony. I knew that you went through something really weird in order to become a mason, i just didn't know what it meant in performing the
initiation. I didn't understand what it meant for you to say those things, and what it meant for them to say those things and perform those acts.
That always stuck in my head. So the "tour guide" says, "after you pay the dues and the money for the first 3 degrees, you'll have your
cermony."(or whatever). "It might seem a little weird at first. Everyone is dressed kind of weird, and you'll have to go through this old
tradition kind of ceremony."
Here is where i believe a higher power helped me make the right decision. Flame me if you like, i believe it to be true.
So i say, "yeah, i've heard you have to say and do some weird stuff, what does it all mean? (notice the direct question..)
He says, "Don't worry about it, we will help you through what your suppose to say and do, so it's not hard or confusing." (Ohh, notice the
I wouldn't necessarily consider that evasion. A lot of candidates worry about “doing it right” before going through
the degrees. He might have misunderstood your question, because as he says, there’s a guide at every step of the way to tell you what to do next.
The whole point of the initiation is that you go in blind and clueless. It is by going through the experience that you are supposed to then be able to
reflect on the teachings.
Even if he weren’t bound by oath not to discuss specific ritualistic aspects of the ceremony, there is nothing stopping him (or any of us) from
discussing our interpretations
of what they mean to us. The fact is, the question you asked can’t be answered in a few short sentences at an
open house. There are literally thousands of books that have been written by Masons about their interpretations of the ritual, the words, the symbols.
It’s like discussing philosophy—there’s no one right interpretation.
I wonder how many people they have tricked into not thinking about the ceremony until afterward?
Ideally, all of them. But it's not a
trick. It’s a method of teaching. If you’re in a book club you actually have to read the book before you can have a meaningful discussion about
it. It would be empty to try to explain everything before you even went through it, because it wouldn’t mean anything to you. But realistically, all
of the ritual has been published for hundreds of years. If you’re really curious, go down to the local book shop and buy a copy of Duncan’s
Ritual, or google it—it’s freely available online at a number of sources.
]What if the majority of people were masons? The mason's don't go against each other, so if they got really big, who would stop them? If
they keep gaining members, its going to be a whole world society?
Wouldn’t that be amazing? A whole world that has sworn not to kill each
other; sworn not to cheat or wrong each other; sworn to treat each other as equals, regardless of their race or religion or social standing.