HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Topics » Religion & Spirituality » Religion (Group) » Ever visited a Masonic Te...

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 11:19 PM

 

Ever visited a Masonic Temple?

They're pretty 'weird' to a non-Mason, right? All the Egyptian hieroglyphs in the choir, the checkerboard floor mats and banners that disappear after the ritual is over? Or the rituals of Fraternities and Sororities? You know the 'Greek System' is based on Yale's age-old secret society system model, right? You know.. like the Skull & Bones and Scroll & Key? I wonder if there's a Sorting Hat.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collegiate_secret_societies_in_North_America#Yale_University

Imagine walking into that environment as a total outsider.

That's what Church, Temple, and Mosque do for me.

26 replies, 4279 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 26 replies Author Time Post
Reply Ever visited a Masonic Temple? (Original post)
Phillip McCleod Jun 2013 OP
TlalocW Jun 2013 #1
arely staircase Jun 2013 #7
durbin Jun 2013 #11
Phillip McCleod Jun 2013 #24
kestrel91316 Jun 2013 #2
cbayer Jun 2013 #3
goldent Jun 2013 #4
edhopper Jun 2013 #5
Phillip McCleod Jun 2013 #25
jeepnstein Jun 2013 #6
Marrah_G Jun 2013 #8
okasha Jun 2013 #9
Phillip McCleod Jun 2013 #12
ZombieHorde Jun 2013 #10
PassingFair Jun 2013 #13
Phillip McCleod Jun 2013 #14
PassingFair Jun 2013 #15
Phillip McCleod Jun 2013 #16
PassingFair Jun 2013 #17
Phillip McCleod Jun 2013 #18
PassingFair Jun 2013 #19
Phillip McCleod Jun 2013 #22
Phillip McCleod Jun 2013 #20
PassingFair Jun 2013 #21
Phillip McCleod Jun 2013 #23
kwassa Jun 2013 #26

Response to Phillip McCleod (Original post)

Thu Jun 13, 2013, 12:41 AM

1. Um...

I've been to a local Lion's Club all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast... Does that count?

TlalocW

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to TlalocW (Reply #1)

Thu Jun 13, 2013, 05:57 PM

7. lol

nt

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to TlalocW (Reply #1)

Fri Jun 14, 2013, 03:00 PM

11. Probably more filling than that Masonic Temple

 

I don't think they serve pancakes at Masonic Temples, but I think I've seen some food tents at parades in the fall sponsored by the local Kof C, (not KFC).

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to TlalocW (Reply #1)

Sat Jun 15, 2013, 01:27 PM

24. i've gone to those here..

 

..they even partnered up with the local Hindu temple a few times. it's interesting.. the one here has an astroturf courtyard inside the front gate where the Tyler probably stands.. i'm guessing..

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Phillip McCleod (Original post)

Thu Jun 13, 2013, 01:08 AM

2. No, but I have my great-grandfather's Masonic cufflinks.

 

I think they have tiny diamonds in them.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Phillip McCleod (Original post)

Thu Jun 13, 2013, 01:19 AM

3. That's cool. You can either enter them with curiosity and an open mind or

just stay out.

Makes no difference to anyone else, does it?

I just made a road trip where I went into all kinds of places that were foreign and mysterious to me. My pleasure was derived from being fascinated by them.

But if a place simply repels you, just don't go there.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Phillip McCleod (Original post)

Thu Jun 13, 2013, 08:55 AM

4. I love going into places far outside my world of experiences

It's the best way to enlarge that world.

My only knowledge of any "Greek system" was at college years ago. I wasn't part of it, except for some beer drinking.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Phillip McCleod (Original post)

Thu Jun 13, 2013, 09:24 AM

5. I have been to Masonic Temples

the architecture is usually very interesting. I was also in a fraternity in college. We had a secret handshake and greeting words, but that was about the only big secrets we had.
I have been to many churches, mosques and temples all over the world. I find the buildings interesting and often beautiful and the culture is worth learning about.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to edhopper (Reply #5)

Sat Jun 15, 2013, 01:29 PM

25. i think it was the architecture of the Knights Templar..

 

..who arguable funded the Gothic age.. that inspired early Masons to concoct the Templar origin pseudohistory. they saw themselves as similarly funding and orchestrating a great architectural revolution.. but *symbolically* in society, not just in stone.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Phillip McCleod (Original post)

Thu Jun 13, 2013, 09:59 AM

6. The first time I stepped into a Lodge...

I was blind folded. It was quite an experience. Fraternities are fun and can help their members grow personally. But in the end that's all they are, social clubs.

Christian churches should never operate that way. Secrets, hidden rituals, and membership tests have no place in Christianity. I won't pretend to speak for the other faiths.

I will say I've never been to a Jewish temple when I've been made to feel anything but downright at home.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Phillip McCleod (Original post)

Thu Jun 13, 2013, 10:23 PM

8. I've spent quite a bit of time in them

As a pagan the set up was something I could relate to.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Marrah_G (Reply #8)

Fri Jun 14, 2013, 01:19 PM

9. Likewise

and likewise. One thing I found amusing is that the Worshipful Master is the only person allowed to wear a hat inside the--for want of a better word--sanctuary, and I've seen pictures of past WM's with a kind of kippa--again for want of a better word--on their heads. In the Texas lodge I visited, the WM wore a Stetson.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to okasha (Reply #9)

Fri Jun 14, 2013, 07:01 PM

12. 'sanctuary' is an excellent word, imo..

 

..sanctum sanctorum is equally fitting.. shades of dr. strange (no relation to dr. strangeLOVE).

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Phillip McCleod (Original post)

Fri Jun 14, 2013, 02:14 PM

10. Yes. I thought it was nice. nt

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Phillip McCleod (Original post)

Sat Jun 15, 2013, 11:07 AM

13. Bullshit boy's club.

I went on a "behind the scenes" tour of our Masonic Temple.
Built in the run-up to the depression.
Never finished.

I asked the tour guide (a Mason) why women (still) can't join the Masons,
and he condescendingly informed me that the word "fraternity" explicitly
means a group of "men", and that the Mason's were a "fraternal" society.
"Do you understand what FRATERNAL means?"
So it was simply against the definition of the Masons to allow females.
("You should check out the Eastern Star!"....as if I would be interested in a group
that does all the drudge work and gets no credit or reward.)

I asked him how come you could join if you weren't really a mason, since "by definition"
Masons were builders who worked with stone....

My personal belief is that, at least in the United States, the Masons were popular
and grew as an answer to the powerful Catholic groups like the Knights of Columbus.
A place for Protestants of various sects to band together and outnumber the Catholic threat.

Detroit's Masonic Temple, the largest ever built:




Building began in 1926 and halted abruptly in 1929. Never finished developing the interior.

55,000 dues paying Protestants in 1926....no BLACK Protestants, though.

The Temple was about to fall into foreclosure until April of this year, when JACK WHITE
paid off their back taxes:

http://www.freep.com/article/20130604/BUSINESS06/306040092/Masonic-Temple-Jack-White-Detroit?odyssey=obinsite

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to PassingFair (Reply #13)

Sat Jun 15, 2013, 11:26 AM

14. thx for that..

 

i was hoping someone else had more than a passing familiarity with this international order, and so knew why comparison to religion is warranted.

i would go further and argue that we can't fully understand US history and the history of religion in the West without going back to the late 17th / early 18th century and starting over.. this time *including* Freemasonry as an integral component in the larger story of Europeans on the world stage. *especially* America.. and not just North America.

simon bolivar was a freemason. so was prince piotr kropotkin.

so was the black abolitionist Prince Hall.. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prince_Hall
..after whom 'Prince Hall Freemasonry' was named.. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prince_Hall_Freemasonry

and you are spot on about 'Eastern Star'.. it is the 'ladies auxiliary' and was invented centuries after the fact to deflect from opening membership. 'Prince Hall' is a similar 'auxiliary order' for black men.

conspiracy theorists have all but ruined the topic for serious discussion, but that doesn't change what happened in history.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Phillip McCleod (Reply #14)

Sat Jun 15, 2013, 11:29 AM

15. I thought it was cool of Jack White to pay their back taxes, as it IS a kick-ass....

concert venue.

Just learned that Henry Ford quit the Masons after his son was
black-balled from membership....things you learn when you screw off
on a Saturday morning!

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to PassingFair (Reply #15)

Sat Jun 15, 2013, 11:51 AM

16. i've been asked to join thrice now.

 

starting at age 19.. most recently about five years ago i was chatting up the director/steward of a local museum owned and operated by the Masons.. let's call him 'Bill'. well since he's the public face of the museum, there was no way for him to deny being a mason, and he's a really decent, ultra-progressive guy. bald as a cue ball.

anyway, i was at this bar with my pal Mark.. a multiple published author, BA in comparative religion.. and a couple friends who knew nothing about the Masons other than what they'd seen on National Treasure. I could tell that Bill *wanted* to answer our questions, wanted to defend the order.. but could not. they are prohibited from defending themselves or correcting misconceptions. they can't say what it is or is not.

i suggested that it was a quasi-religious order that focused on memorization and reenactment of 'rituals' that look like pointless parliamentary procedure, and involve the manipulation of ancient symbols. they believe that Reason is the Lantern that Lights the Way, and adhere to Enlightenment-era humanistic ethics.. any man from any religion may join, be they christian, jew, muslim, or other.

Bill liked my description and invited me to join on the spot.

i said, 'Don't you have to swear an oath that you believe in a higher power?'
he said, 'yes..'
i said, 'yeah. i'm an atheist. besides, you need people on the outside who know you're not conspiring to take over the world.'

they may be many things.. a good ole boys' club in the south.. a philanthropic organization in the north.. a hermetic order with deep roots in Europe..

but what they aren't is evil. they're a religion.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Phillip McCleod (Reply #16)

Sat Jun 15, 2013, 12:01 PM

17. The European "fraternities" allow atheists.

My grandfather was a member of Lodge St. John No. 795, Bucksburn, Aberdeenshire Scotland...

I'm looking at his membership (fold-out card) now.

"ON THE ROLL OF THE
GRAND LODGE OF SCOTLAND OF FREE AND ACCEPTED MASONS

Hereby certify that Brother Passingfair's Grandfather
has this day been enrolled a
LIFE MEMBER
In testimony whereof we have delivered unto him this our Diploma having for the better security caused him to sign his name on the first Pillar, this 21st day of December AD 1929.

Cool relic.

My grandfather was an atheist, as was my father....

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to PassingFair (Reply #17)

Sat Jun 15, 2013, 12:16 PM

18. yeh 'Bill' said..

 

..i could still join if i could find some way to rationalize 'higher power' to mean the 'universe' or something. i don't doubt there are plenty of atheists among european masons, if even american ones are willing to let that slide.

i was tempted.. just to learn more.. but demurred. i have no desire to join a boys' club.. or really, any club. maybe a nerd club if such a thing existed here, which it does not.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Phillip McCleod (Reply #18)

Sat Jun 15, 2013, 12:22 PM

19. My father never joined, either.

"There are plenty of ways to do good that don't involve wearing funny hats."

-- PassingFair's Father

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to PassingFair (Reply #19)

Sat Jun 15, 2013, 01:14 PM

22. exactly.. to 'do good' is the point of the masonic order..

 

..as an ethical system and now as an institution it was central to the founding of enlightenment era democratic republics like the USA.

that said, there was and in some places there is a very ugly undercurrent. not all lodges are the same. the KKK is another masonic spinoff.. a sobering realization. despite the supposed openmindedness of masons, the center of much of the ritual is a certain book, present in the hall on an altar, and characters and moral lessons from a certain book.. the christian Bible.

meld the masonic obsession with knights and knighthood and monarchy and God as the Great Architect of the Universe with some good ole southern-fried bigotry and the result is a mess of No True Scotsmanship.

in general the masonic obsession with the pseudohistory involving the Knights Templar has somewhat poisoned the order. it wasn't until later masonic historians like Albert Mackey and A.E. Waite paved the way for historian historian Dame Frances Yates, that the origin of Masonry was finally pinned down..

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albert_Mackey
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frances_Yates

Masonry has roots in the much older hermetic order of Rosicrucians.. the Rose & Cross Order.. and is intimately related in it's founding with other Enlightenment institutions.. like the Royal Society of Science. these guys were Christian Utopianists of the first order, and wanted to completely revolutionize society around a sort of Johannine concept of Jesus as Logos - the Light of Reason and the Word of God.

much of the mythology is all made up to fit and synchretistic.. the story of pseudo-biblical character, Hiram Abiff.. the ancient origins myth involving the Knights Templar.. it's all inherited from the Rosicrucian sense of melodrama and mix and matched legends, documents and oral histories. some have even seen shades of Druidism and Mithraism in their rites and tales.. certainly they would like their ancient origin story to be true.

interestingly enough.. it might be. hermeticism is a half millennium older than christianity, and alchemy is older than that.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to PassingFair (Reply #17)

Sat Jun 15, 2013, 12:38 PM

20. the grand lodge of scotland is among the oldest, btw.

 

(1736) http://www.grandlodgescotland.com/

up there with the united grand lodge of england (ugle)..
(1717) http://www.ugle.org.uk/

and the Grand Lodge of Ireland..
(1725) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Masonic_Grand_Lodges

and the Grand Orient de France (GOdF)..
(1738) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grand_Orient_de_France

which led to all kinds of spinoffs.. *worldwide*

like the District Grand Lodge of Madras in India..
(1767) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Masonic_Grand_Lodges

like the Bavarian Illuminati..
(1776) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Illuminati

and the Grand Lodge of Virginia..
(1778) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grand_Lodge_of_Virginia

and the French Rite..
(1786) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Rite

..

the list goes on much longer.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Phillip McCleod (Reply #20)

Sat Jun 15, 2013, 12:50 PM

21. Go along to get along.....

I know that I am (at LEAST) a third generation atheist.
All of my relatives from Scotland are atheists as well,
though I didn't know that until I was an adult.

I think so many Scots were killed, maimed, and deported
because of religious differences that the "survivors" just
kind of decided to give it up.

I've seen statistics that claim that non-believers make up
over 60% of the population of Scotland.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to PassingFair (Reply #21)

Sat Jun 15, 2013, 01:24 PM

23. interesting.. i was reading somewherez on teh webz..

 

..that part of the reason we yanks are *still* so polarized over religion.. all this time later.. is that the wall of separation of church and state has prevented religious wars.

Europe is sick of them.. we haven't known that kind of oppression on that scale. we don't really get why the Wall is so important. we take it for granted.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to PassingFair (Reply #13)

Sat Jun 15, 2013, 10:41 PM

26. I saw the Rolling Stones perform here in 1978, for $10 a ticket. The "Some Girls" tour.

An unannounced concert that was only advertised on local radio the day of the concert. I showed up there about 7 in the morning, the area was deserted except for thousands standing in line. I never thought I would get the tickets, I ended up getting the first row in the balcony, which was actually very close to the stage.

The Stones delivered. A tiny venue for them, only about 4000 seats. No special effects, video screens, inflatable dolls, just the band.They were incredible.

Edit to add: this is when the Stones were transitioning to the big stadium tours, but couldn't quite give up the small venues, so they did these unannounced performances between stadiums during the tours.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread