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What Masonry means to people

Their thoughts on the Meaning of Masonry

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Turning The Hiram Key

Find out what Masonry means to Robert by reading his latest book, Turning The Hiram Key.

- Robert's own thoughts about his new book
- The official launch website
- Get hold of a signed copy
By ZenMonk
Hello Robert!

* Should Freemasonry be secret, or should we be more open about it?
Freemasonry is a secret by it's own nature. Because everything you find out by going to the temple it is reveled ONLY to your mind and you usually do not share. You can share a symbol or a meaning to a symbol but this is meaningless without your own interpretation.

* Is a member of your family a Freemason, and how do you feel about that?
I am due to my grandfather who went to the Grand Architect 8 years ago, but he marked my way in life.

* If you are a Mason, what does Masonic ritual mean to you?
First of all it is an escape from the profane life. An escape from the rush for the money... Secondly it's a path of my whole life.

* How did you feel when you were made a Mason?
I actually was reading a lot about freemasonry since I was a little child (I have read my first book about symbols of freemasonry when I was 13 years old) but my initiation and my master mason ritual pass where a a lot different than all the books I've read about... Because I was made mason and I took the place of Hiram. I was in the middle of the ceremony and not some others in some books. It was a death experience and then a reborn. The light even if it was a "material light" was so encouraging.

* And what role has Masonic ritual played in your life since?
It is governing my entire life. One thing that is in my head since I was made a Master Mason is that I am not a Master Mason. I am still a companion of the path of life. I am still an companion in the search of the truth and the search of the word and the search of the meanings. I guess we all are only companions till the moment death will come for our mortal body.

* Do you feel it is something which can not, or perhaps should not, be put into words?
Yes, I can. A lot of the experiences cannot be explained into words.

I also have a few ideas regarding the Kirkwall Scroll, but I wait for the end of your book. I am still reading it having a few pages left. Unfortunately I leave in Romania and books are coming a little bit late and also they are in my opinion a bit badly translated and as a Mason, you have to read between the lines. I have read most of your books and they seem at least interesting and would be a pleasure to meet you one day (hope dies last) and to have at least a few hours to discuss about as from time to time I have different opinions about some ideas and they might seem interesting for your future books.

I greet you by all the numbers that are known to you!

By a profane
My great grandfather was a Freemason, wha attained a considerable 'rank' within his lodge. I never knew him nor his son but it is clear to me that the 'mark' of the freemasons was transmitted to me via the 'insights' which my father gave to me.
My father 'educated' me or rather 'initiated' me into the way of thinking & 'seeing' the world which i find rarely amongst my friends, with notable exeptions which lead me to believe that their families also have a connection to freemasonry.

I feel : that i was 'priveliged' to have been entrusted with such knowledge.
Freemasonry should remain 'subtle' about itself - not neccessarily secret, but not an 'open house' either as not all minds are receptive to the 'truths' contained within the fremasonory.
Though still uninitiated thus unfamiliar with the rituals, from what i have discovered, the rituals are important in maintaining the 'identity' of the masonic movement, and the majoe 'events' that helped to shape the guild.

In this day where solidarity is sorely lacking, where the individual is king and where the magic & mysteries of life have been neglected for the scientific 'truth' apparently inherant in all things, we need esoterique teachings, a 'fraternity' and spiritualism.
By Shelton
My father was a Mason, so was my Grandfather on my mother's side, her mother being in Eastern Star (my mother was passively involved), and then my mother passed away almost two years ago in a Masonic Home in Maryland. However, a few years ago my son then in his late twenties went to a Masonic Lodge in Asheville, NC to inquire about being a Mason. He gave up because basically they told him he was too young. He felt out of place. As a mom, I was very proud of his inquiry though.

Strangely in Madison, Wisconsin in 2004, I was at a bookstore, and of the hundreds of books there, this book called out to me, Uriel's Machine, not even knowing (or interested at the time) that it had to do with Freemasonry. But I read it with rapt interest, devouring the words, and even had to bring it overseas with me while working at a school here in Kuwait. I am reading it a second time while living in the Middle East. I simply cannot get enough ... because it rings truth. A leap in many directions through logical deduction and quite simply, some of us have the calling to read and understand.

To the authors, thank you for this profound book. I hope to read more of the other books you have written, and to encourage my son to not give up.
By skitours
i had joined masonry in order to become a better person under masonic teaching. i have been instructed on the working tools, however i'm still non the wiser how i apply these to become a better person.
the more i have read on masonry the more contraditions i find.
before entry into masonry we must confer we believe in a supream being, but in the 2nd degree we are told to study science and nature, and all modern evidence points to there being no god.
By James Staunton
Freemasonry is a force for good in the world - the second largest donor to non-masonic charities in Britain (after the National Lottery).

It is a fraternity that protects its own. My grandfather's Lodge still takes my Grandmother out for lunch once a year and sends her flowers on her birthday. She values the support his Lodge still provides, more than thirty years after his death.

Along with Radio4, public schools, Rememberance Day and Top Gear masonry stands as the last vestige of old England. It protects decency and tradition in a country where upright God-fearing Englishmen men are out-numbered by the massed ranks of Peter Mandleson, recruitment consultants, and the loathsome rabble that agree with the views of Yasmin Alibhai-Brown.

It is proud of the Empire and our past, unlike your average left-wing state-school teacher tutoring her wretched, drug-addled pupils in media studies, socially responsible graffiti-art and twitter-speak.

It is the fraternity of Kitchener, Churchill, Wellington and Gibbon - great men who weren't ashamed to make Britain great.
By Wor Bro Ed Backhouse (Lodge Killarney, Cape Town)
Whilst I agree that the ritual or ceremony of freemasonry reinforces the morals I was taught as a young boy by my parents, the aspect of introspection or self examinatioin and thereby self knowledge creates the platform by which I am able to contribute towards the well being of my masonic brothers and the profane world I come into contact with.

Charitable works are important, but we need to find a mission in a similar manner to the 'Royal Society' which made information available to the common man.
By Jim Gregory
I have been proud to be a Mason for the last 23 years. I have been Master of Village Lodge #315 three times. I am proud to belong to the Masters and Wardens Association (I am the Secretary), Scottish Rite where I will serve as Master of Rose Croix next year, I am secretary/Recorder of two York Rite Bodies, I have been elected to the York Rite College, the highest order of The York Rite. I am slated to become The High Priest next year in the third body I am the Lodge Instructor and Treasurer in my Lodge I hold a minor Grand Lodge appointment in the State of Florida. I am also a member of the Shrine. I believe that of all of the important things in my life, becoming a Mason ranks only below Becoming a Christian, Marrying my wife, and the birth of my children. I, like many other Masons, follow a family tradition. My father was a Mason.
The motto of the Masons is "We take good men and make them better" I am proud to be a part of that. The myths about us are, for the most part lies, put forth by people (like the woman from the New York Times who wrote such a biased article about Dan Browns new book) it sounded like sour grapes to me. There are organizations for women, people of all religions, races, etc. which are exclusive to one group or another. Remember that Queen Elizabeth I was not allowed to become a Mason or set in a meeting. We bar no Brother due to Race, Religion or Social Standing. You must only be a man, of lawful age, well recommended and believe in a Supreme Being to qualify. If we are as powerful as we are made out to be, when is the order going to offer to pay off my mortgage? One has only to look back at the Founding Fathers of this country to see the influence of the moral teachings of the Freemasons. The roll of Just and Upright men who have been a part of the Fraternity reads like an honor roll of Great thinkers through out history. Sixteen Presidents of The United States starting with George Washington through Harry Truman and Jerry Ford and many other world leaders including Sir Winston Churchill have been proud to be Brothers. I am humbled to be allowed to count myself among such an august assemblage.
By Tiptoes
I am a Freemason and when I was going through my degrees I was intrigued by the meanings in the ceremony, Knight and Lomas have touched upon bits of it in their books but nothing as for the UGLE to be worried about.

For me freemasonry is about historical and personable enlightenment.

To answer the questions.

1. I think it's hard to be more open about freemasonry without putting people off being interested in it.UGLE are in a dilemna at the moment how do they attract the new members keeping the organisation going without open up a little more. The way society is today means that more lodges are closing and the UGLE might end up being a victim of their own misjudgements.

2. For me the whole point of learning is to understand the meanings which like a puzzle lead onto other things and areas, that excitement for me in finding and learning new things about the craft is the cornerstone of why I like to be a mason.Unfortunately work commitments prevent me from learning.

3.It was a very similar feeling I got when my first ever baby was born.

Excitement, intrepidation, anticipation, the unknown, then finally relief and an amazing sense of trust.

4. It has given me a deep interest and insight into the historical manifestations of the human evolution and deeper sense of understanding of those masons around me.

5. I've tried to describe masonic principle and how it "Feels" to me, to describe the ceremonies and the symbolic rituals would be going too far in that it would spoil it for others, I don't believe that telling someone (which is obviously discouraged in masonic principle) of what your experiences were could ever give someone an iota of understanding about masonic life.

You have to go.... mentally,physically and spiritually "feel" the experience for yourself to better understand what it is about. That is how I would describe it. It is an amazing experience that is hard to compare with events in real life, the only thing left to compare is the emotions.
By Trevor H
Let me say from the outset that I am not a Freemason, although I do find it interesting.

For some years now I have been pursuing a path of private research which has included Masonic ritual (amongst others). I have some friends, both male and female’ who are masons and ha been invaluable in my endeavours.

Two significant areas of my research are geometry and ritual. More precisely I am looking at the underlying pattern to the geometry of alchemical and Masonic emblems and the effect that changes in ritual has on our understanding of them.

In ‘The Secrets of Freemasonry’ p.256 you mention that ‘…the Royal Arch has been tinkered out of all true knowledge by excessive editing’. I could not agree more and this is just one example of many where tinkering has severed the link between ritual and symbol, therefore denying knowledge to future generations.

The triple tau is the key to the (original) ritual and is the link between the Godhead and the geometry that is used to describe the godhead attributes.

In the opening lines of Lecture II, we are told that, “nothing but the key is wanting”. The triple tau is not the key, but once the key is found it unlocks the true power of the triple tau. And further confirms the statement; “If thou comprehendest these things then thou knowest enough’. It must be noted here that “knowest enough” is not knowest all, this comes later in the (original) Royal Secret (32°) ritual.

The Royal Arch brings together the perfection of the spiritual with the perfection of number/geomtry (speculative Masonry) to describe the Godhead by the perfection of the symbol as the name is ineffable.

The (older) Royal Arch ritual is truly a beautiful ritual in its earlier forms but its richness has been diluted by successive tinkering over the years. Fortunately the symbols appear to have remained true.

All this leads to my mantra, “Do we really know what we change when we change ritual?”

Trevor H
By Elenilson Nunes
Boa noite meus irmaos ?!
Por motivos óbvios não usarei qualquer sinal ou símbolo maçonico.
Sou de São Paulo / Brasil, pertenço a Loja Simbolica Meditação e Fé - 628 - GLESP, ocupo o cargo de primeiro vigilante.
Estou iniciando a leitura da obra " O LIVRO DE HIRAM ", percebo porém, que algumas passagens do ritual sao descritas ali de uma forma muito transparente.
Não me entendam mal, por favor, não estou e nem tenho a pretensão de criticá-los, absolutamente ( aliás, quem sou eu ? ).
É apenas uma dúvida, nao encontram nenhum problema com isso, ou seja, sentem-se á vontade para comentar ?
Não são segredos que deveríam ser revelados somente aos iniciados ?
Obrigado, estou achando profundamente importante a leitura do livro, muitos dados que em nossos rituais não são mencionados.
O livro devería ser parte integrante da bibliotéca de todo maçom que trabalha em busca da verdade.
Abraços meus irmãos.
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