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Why Do Secret Societies Feel The Need to Group Together?

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posted on Aug, 11 2004 @ 09:44 PM
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So, why do they/you? What do you do in the secret societies that you cannot do alone?

I mean is it friends, prestige, power...what is it?

Do you discuss something in Secret Societies that us "common folk" wouldn't understand?

Honestly, I see Secret Societies like a frat, theoretically you're there to do good things for the community, but in the end, you just want friends.

Alright, before you respond, lets lay off the insults, I may be wrong, its most likely relative, but I've seen how quick SOME secret societors are to throw insults and play word games...

I just want an honest answer.

*Edit: changed Mason to secret society.

[edit on 11-8-2004 by Jamuhn]




posted on Aug, 11 2004 @ 09:56 PM
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Answer 1 - man is a social animal.
Answer 2 - many hands make light work
Answer 3 - they have common ideals & goals.

I'm sure there are more answers as well. Also, jamuhn - why pick on masons alone? Or do you intend to pose this same question to other societies too. Let's be fair about this. And if you're going to bring up the old chestnut about Freemasonry being an ultra secret society, do an ATS search cos this topiv's been done to death

.I wonder if its World Bash-Freemasonry Week.



posted on Aug, 11 2004 @ 10:01 PM
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Originally posted by Jamuhn
So, why do they/you? What do you do in the masons that you cannot do alone?


What the heck? I mean, seriously. You claim to be all friendly and positive, and then you criticise people for forming groups. For God's sake... do we even need a reason? Do we have to justify the fact that we're a group to you? Do you think the natural state of humans is to be lonely atoms, and that social molecules are inherently evil?

I'm tempted to use a bad word here. Masons are a group because (believe it or not) we like each other's company. SHOCK!

I'm very sorry for you if you think the only reason people ever do something is because it will net them some personal gain. For the love of God, why do Christians gather together in a church? Why do groups of friends get together? Why do married couples live in one home instead of getting together merely for the purpose of conceiving children? Why do parents have children in their house when it costs them so much money? At the risk of sounding icky to you, love is the most basic human feeling, and in my opinion it is what makes human beings human beings and not animals or robots. In is in the nature of a human being to want the company of other human beings.



Do you discuss something in Masonry that us "common folk" wouldn't understand?


Now we come to the nub. The problem is not, after all, that we are a group, but that you aren't a member. Well, son, if you believe in God and are of good morals, just apply to join if there's something you think we know that you want to know.



Honestly, I see masonry like a frat, theoretically you're there to do good things for the community, but in the end, you just want friends.


I assume you mean a college fraternity... have you ever been part of a college fraternity? I can't speak for all of them, but I've had some experience with college fraternities, and although they have a tendency to party a little harder than is my taste (and, after all, I'm 27, a little past the years where you stay up all night drinking), I'd say that, yes, they do mould their young men into something a little better than they were when they joined.



Alright, before you respond, lets lay off the insults,


Yes, please. Lay off the insults.



posted on Aug, 11 2004 @ 10:20 PM
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Alright, I'll edit this to say Secret Societies. Honestly, I started this because of what was said to me in another thread.

I am not critizing groups in general, merely the secret, selective groups.

When groups and individuals form, the individuals choose each other.

Masonry does the same, except its a little different because an individual chooses masonry and masonry as an organized group chooses you.

What sets it apart is its highly organized nature. It's not like a bunch of guys sitting around chatting. You have degrees of masonry, posts, and so forth.

So, why do you feel the need to be in this kind of group. Maybe I should say, why do masons feel the need to have social ladders. You can't say everyone is equal, because some have more priviledges than others.

I just don't understand what a highly organized structure with different levels would afford. And then when individuals do rise up, its based on the principles of masonry, not on individual principles, but on what masonry teaches and tells you.

And you are not privy to all the information of masonry when you first join, so its not like you know entirely what you are getting into. When I allude this to frats, it is in the context of its organization.

What makes the lowest degree so different from the highest except in the eyes of what masonry dictates?

Not trying to insult, just saying how I feel, I'm just being honest.

*Sorry I meant to write secret societies instead of masonry.*

[edit on 11-8-2004 by Jamuhn]

[edit on 11-8-2004 by Jamuhn]



posted on Aug, 11 2004 @ 10:36 PM
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None of the Secret Societies I am engaged in have affiliation with each other; they don't tend to band together much at all.

There are some people round here that appear to feel like they are missing out on something. I courteously extend my sympathetic regards to them and assure them that Freemasonry is not for everyone.




posted on Aug, 11 2004 @ 10:38 PM
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Originally posted by Jamuhn
What sets it apart is its highly organized nature. It's not like a bunch of guys sitting around chatting. You have degrees of masonry, posts, and so forth.


Nope. There are plenty of other groups out there with organised structures. In fact, most social entities where people interact are organised.
Your local school soccer team, the debate team, the local Women's Institute, the Boy Scouts - there are literally thousands of organisations that are just as organised.

As for not knowing what you are getting into when you join masonry? Do people really know everything about anything that they join? Does the boy scout know exactly what he will be doing when he first approaches the Scout hut? Isn't not knowing some things all part of the learning process? Did you know exactly what you were letting yourself in for on your first day at school? There is literally nothing that we know everything about - Freemasonry is no different in that respect and so shouldn't be singled out because of it.
But like I said elsewhere, there is enough information out there so that any prospective masonic candidate can know enough about what he is joining.

"I am not critizing groups in general, merely the secret, selective groups."

That's OK then. Because masonry is neither of those things.



posted on Aug, 11 2004 @ 10:48 PM
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Originally posted by Jamuhn
So, why do you feel the need to be in this kind of group. Maybe I should say, why do masons feel the need to have social ladders. You can't say everyone is equal, because some have more priviledges than others.


You are quite mistaken (would it be inappropriate for me to remark here on the futility of making criticisms about something of which you know nothing. No Mason has more priveleges than any other, except perhaps for the Master of the Lodge and the Grand Master, both of which have executive powers because they are elected positions, much like your president in the United States is supposed to be elected. I don't know where you got the idea that some Masons have priveleges others do not within Masonry, but it is quite incorrect.

To repeat, there is no ladder within Masonry. You are mistaken. I'm sorry, but there's no other way to say that you're mistaken.



I just don't understand what a highly organized structure with different levels would afford.


Masonry does not have different levels. Any Master Mason is equal in rights to any other Master Mason. Period. The Worshipful Master has special powers within Lodge (for one year), because he needs to administer the Lodge. The Grand Master has special powers (for one year) because he needs to administer the Jurisdiction. That's it.



And then when individuals do rise up, its based on the principles of masonry, not on individual principles, but on what masonry teaches and tells you.


No. When people do "rise up," it's on the basis of being elected as a Master or Grand Master. Ever Master Mason has a vote for the Master of his Lodge, and every Lodge officer has a vote for the Grand Master of the Jurisdiction. Generally, good men are elected to these positions.



And you are not privy to all the information of masonry when you first join, so its not like you know entirely what you are getting into.


What "information of Masonry?" I posted, for you, on another thread, a list of the principles of my Grand Lodge. Everything else is ritual and modes of recognition (neither of which I feel should be shared generally, although some of my brethren feel the ritual can be made public).



What makes the lowest degree so different from the highest except in the eyes of what masonry dictates?


The lowest degree within Masonry is "Entered Apprentice." Most people stay at this degree for only one month. Progression is based on memorising a small amount of work. The middle degree is "Fellow Craft," which, again, most people hold for only one month, and they can proceed by again memorising a small amount of work. Finally, after the incredibly onerous time of THREE WHOLE MONTHS, and after memorising two small pieces of work, they are raised to the sublime degree of a Master Mason, the "highest" degree in Freemasonry (I use the quotes because the idea of "high" and "low" degrees is ludicrous). They are expected to memorise one small peice of work before they are given their Masonic ceritificates, but in my country, every person who has received the Entered Apprentice degree is considered a full Mason, able to vote, and having all Masonic rights (except they have an assigned seat in Lodge, rather than choosing where to sit).



Not trying to insult, just saying how I feel, I'm just being honest.


Yes, but your feelings are based on incorrect assumptions.



posted on Aug, 13 2004 @ 02:15 PM
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I suppose one could surmise that people in secret societies don't want to accept responsibility for their actions...which explains why they hide their identities. I believe their actions speak for themselves...they speak cowardice.

Cowards are people who don't have the inner strength to stand alone. They feed off the strength of others, thus their need to belong to a "secret society".



[edit on 13-8-2004 by chekme]



posted on Aug, 13 2004 @ 06:35 PM
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Originally posted by chekme
I suppose one could surmise that people in secret societies don't want to accept responsibility for their actions...which explains why they hide their identities. I believe their actions speak for themselves...they speak cowardice.



Then can you tell me why a lot of the Freemasons on ATS have posted their real names and their Lodge numbers?

Have you posted your real name and address? If not, who is the coward?



posted on Aug, 13 2004 @ 08:36 PM
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Real names?


This is a given in the world and has been through out time. Names have meaning and consequences.

I am truly surprised masons or any other member of a "group" announces themselves in their sig or avatar. This seems to me to be in opposite to the entire reasoning of secret.
Generalized listing

One of the main reasons that secret societies take such a beating is the very nature of the society. Masons and others formed societies (by whatever name) because of common interests. These interests may or may not be wide and varied.

What I mean here is this:
Let's take the Rotary Club (Rotarians in the U.S.). These people generally have a goal of community business growth. I say generally because some clubs could easily have other goals such as supporting a members only golf club.

The Elks, Lions, Moose, etc. generally have a common goal of a decent club atmosphere although they could just as easily also have a localized goal of supporting a half-way house.

Secret societies deserve to be scrutinized, they deserved to be ridiculed. The best of the bunch will survive and prosper the others won't. Secret societies are good for society and yet by and large become tend toward 'elitism.' From the Boy Scouts to the Grange, clubs, gangs, groups and societies are part of civilization.

I noticed in another thread someone posted about becoming a member of one of the secret societies. I am perplexed that supposed members of that same society responded.

I will have more to post about this at another time.



posted on Aug, 13 2004 @ 10:13 PM
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I think its pretty simple. Unless they have a specific goal to achieve like charitable work or protecting a secret it probably comes down to a desire to belong to something.

Humans have never been individually independent, otherwise we probably never would have made it as far as we have.

[edit on 13-8-2004 by Weller]


df1

posted on Aug, 13 2004 @ 11:14 PM
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Originally posted by PublicGadfly
I am truly surprised masons or any other member of a "group" announces themselves in their sig or avatar.

The Masons are a society with secrets, not a secret society. Masonic Lodges are not concealed in any way, they have signs out front. Masons put emblems on their cars identifying themselves as Masons. Grand Lodges and individual Masons have websites which discuss Masonry. Masons openly take pride in being to be Masons.

So why would you be surprised that Masons identify themselves with avatars and signatures on ATS?


I noticed in another thread someone posted about becoming a member of one of the secret societies. I am perplexed that supposed members of that same society responded.

Inorder to become a Mason, you must ask a Mason. It would be pretty silly for Masons not to respond to inquiries about becoming a Mason.

.



posted on Aug, 14 2004 @ 03:14 AM
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Originally posted by df1
Masons put emblems on their cars identifying themselves as Masons.


Indeed. I have one on my car. I wanted to have one for a long time, but I had no car. I was considering sticking one one my bicycle. Fortunately, it never came to that.



posted on Aug, 14 2004 @ 08:37 AM
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If I may add something . . . . I might be oversimplifying it, but here goes:

1.) You believe in something and have a cause.

2.) You find out that other people belive in it, too. You get together to talk about it, perhaps do something about it. There's your "society."

3.) The "secret part"? Would you divulge your friends' secrets? Suppose one of your friends is in trouble or needs help of some personal nature. You would keep it private. Suppose two or more of you have your own "inside jokes" or sort of behaviour that only your group understands - idiosyncracies, personality traits, etc. Would you then turn around and discuss them in a public forum? I know I wouldn't.

There's a antural tendency among friends (especially close friends), to NOT discuss in public what they discuss among themselves. Certainly, some information is harmelss and can be divulged to to others freely. Still, I find myself - and I'm sure others do too - not talking voluntarily about what I discuss with friends, as a matter of course.

Thoughts??



posted on Aug, 16 2004 @ 12:52 PM
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I just got back from a vacation, so anyways, what exactly do you memorize? Is there a Masonic Bible or something that you memorize out of?

Id like an answer before I go further because it depends on what exactly you memorize and what the "documents of Masonry" include...



posted on Aug, 16 2004 @ 01:02 PM
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Alright, it seems there is a Bible, and now I am very curious about what's in it. I'm thinking it includes a lot about God and ethics and the such. So, I'm wondering do people who join Masonry know the fixed beliefs of the Masonic tradition? And, if they don't, do they become converted to these set of beliefs after joining?

Someone said they pay more into the organization than they get out of it.

I'm sorry, but after doing research this is starting to sound like a "counterfeit religion."

So, to answer my question, which I do feel now is more geered towards Masonry, I think its so that you feel more secure in this bizzare and crazy world.

I guess that's not all bad, we all need security and comfort, and its nice to see people trying to extend that security and comfort to others.

But I still do not understand the point of having degrees and the such if it wasn't made out to be a religion.

Or a better way to put it is a supplemental religion. Alright, I get it now. Good luck with all that.



posted on Aug, 16 2004 @ 01:28 PM
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Originally posted by Jamuhn
Alright, it seems there is a Bible, and now I am very curious about what's in it.


No, no, no! Where did you hear that? That's completely incorrect. There is no "Masonic" bible in the sense of a book with different text. A "Masonic" bible is a King James Bible with a Square and Compass on the front, a table of correspondences to Masonic ritual, some info on degrees, and an area for recording Masonic events in your life. It is different from a standard bible in only the way a "family" bible is different -- it has some extra pages in the front.



I'm thinking it includes a lot about God and ethics and the such. So, I'm wondering do people who join Masonry know the fixed beliefs of the Masonic tradition? And, if they don't, do they become converted to these set of beliefs after joining?


NO! You are operating on a false assumption. Freemasonry is not a religion, and it most certainly DOES NOT have its own scriptures.



Someone said they pay more into the organization than they get out of it.


That's not true either. What the person said was that he has contributed money to Freemasonry, but never received any money from Freemasonry. In the next paragraph, he goes on to say how he has obtained less tangible benefits. The money paid was in dues, etc. It's no different (in that limited sense) from joining the YMCA -- you pay a certain amount, and get to do certain things.



I'm sorry, but after doing research this is starting to sound like a "counterfeit religion."


It's netiher a religion nor counterfeit, so it's hard to follow what is meant by this.



But I still do not understand the point of having degrees and the such if it wasn't made out to be a religion.


What an odd thing to say -- do you feel that degrees are characteristic of a religion? We don't have degrees at my church, or any other church of which I am aware.



Or a better way to put it is a supplemental religion. Alright, I get it now. Good luck with all that.


No, Freemasonry might be appropriately described as "the handmaid of religion."



posted on Aug, 16 2004 @ 01:31 PM
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Well, the quote you heard was probably you get more OUT of masonry than you ever put into it... but this was not speaking financially.

Masonry is about being with good men, learning to be a better man, serving your friends and community, increasing your faith in g-d, and having fun through work.

Masonic Bible. I have one on my desk. It is the King James version with about 100 pages of Masonic History. The lessons of masonry are taught in the rituals and found in the bylaws and tradition, both written and unwritten. The secrets of freemasonry are mostly methods of recognition, grips, words, signs, tokens, that kind of thing, and those last are transmitted mouth to ear and are not written down. Ever.

Masonry is not a cult, it is a fraternity. No one asks you to join (unless your name is MrNecros, and then you are hounded... :lol
or keeps you from quitting.. in fact, if you stop paying your dues, after a couple of years you will be dropped.

I have been a mason for three years now, and am a senior officer in my lodge, and I have NEVER met a better group of men. Do your research, ask questions, go to a lodge and meet these men... you will find that Masonry is just a group of good men that want to improve themselves.



posted on Aug, 16 2004 @ 02:11 PM
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What an odd thing to say -- do you feel that degrees are characteristic of a religion? We don't have degrees at my church, or any other church of which I am aware.


Catholicism big time!

I am not familiar with protestantism though.



No, no, no! Where did you hear that? That's completely incorrect. There is no "Masonic" bible in the sense of a book with different text. A "Masonic" bible is a King James Bible with a Square and Compass on the front, a table of correspondences to Masonic ritual, some info on degrees, and an area for recording Masonic events in your life. It is different from a standard bible in only the way a "family" bible is different -- it has some extra pages in the front.


Yea, I kind of figured the Masonic Bible would include the Christian Bible. That's what I was speaking of, the rest of what would be included in the Masonic Bible.



NO! You are operating on a false assumption. Freemasonry is not a religion, and it most certainly DOES NOT have its own scriptures.


Yes, it has the scriptures of Christians.



That's not true either. What the person said was that he has contributed money to Freemasonry, but never received any money from Freemasonry. In the next paragraph, he goes on to say how he has obtained less tangible benefits. The money paid was in dues, etc. It's no different (in that limited sense) from joining the YMCA -- you pay a certain amount, and get to do certain things.


LOL, I don't doubt that anymore.


Well, now I understand why you group together, this statement right here has pretty much explained it:


No, Freemasonry might be appropriately described as "the handmaid of religion."


And in my mind includes all that religion entails.

But I still wonder, do you suscribe to fixed beliefs of ethics. Surely you must believe that ethics are relative in some sense. How much room is there for individual thought in Masonry?



posted on Aug, 16 2004 @ 02:19 PM
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Originally posted by Jamuhn
Alright, it seems there is a Bible, and now I am very curious about what's in it. I'm thinking it includes a lot about God and ethics and the such.


Yes there is a Bible. It's the same one as everyone else reads!!!!
It's called the King James Version.




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