About Freemasonry

Masonry is the world’s largest and oldest fraternity. Although Freemasonry has adopted lessons from many ancient traditions, the origins of the Institution are shrouded in history. The earliest known Masonic document, the Regius Manuscript, written in approximately 1390 A.D., states that the Order was officially recognized by King Athelstan the Glorious, King of all Britain, in the year 926 A.D., and states that stonemasons practiced Masonry prior to that time. Therefore, it may very well be that, over the course of more than a thousand years, men have discovered the meaning of true brotherhood through the practice of Masonry, which has been defined as “a beautiful system of morality, veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols.”

Our institution continues to thrive in modern times. The U.S. system of Freemasonry traces its roots to the United Kingdom, and the foundation of the Grand Lodges of England (1717), Ireland (1725), and Scotland (1736), which were established to govern the lodges in those countries, many of which had been meeting for many years, even centuries. By the 1700s, most lodges were no longer composed solely of stonemasons who actually worked with stones as a vocation, but also included men who sought to better themselves on a spiritual level by applying the symbolic and allegorical teachings of the stonemasons. We are all familiar with the sayings, “on the level,” or “a square deal.” These are examples of the moral application of Masonic working tools. Modern Freemasonry teaches its lessons to initiates by conferring three successive degrees, called the Entered Apprentice, Fellowcraft, and Master Mason.

James Anderson’s 1723 “The Charges of a Freemason”

CHARGES OF A FREE-MASON, EXTRACTED FROM The Ancient RECORDS of LODGES beyond Sea, and of those in England, Scotland, and Ireland, for the Use of the Lodges in LONDON: TO BE READ At The Making of NEW BRETHREN, or when the MASTER shall order it. The General Heads, viz.: I. Of God and Religion. II. [...]

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Formally recognizing a Masonic lodge

Great care must be taken when joining a Masonic lodge in order to determine whether the lodge you intend to receive membership into is truly a recognized and “regular” Masonic lodge or whether it may, in fact, be “clandestine”. The Secretary of your chosen lodge will be able to provide you with a printed directory [...]

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Guarding the West Gate

The following entry is courtesy of Worshipful Brother Justin Jones and his blog lonestarmason which can be found online here: https://lonestarmason.wordpress.com/. Putting Quantity Before Quality: The Open West Gate The West Gate is a term many Masons may be unfamiliar with. I know here in Texas I had never heard of it until I began actively [...]

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Albert Mackey’s Twenty-five Ancient Landmarks of Freemasonry

Dr. Albert Gallatin Mackey (1807-1881) set forth his Twenty-five Ancient Landmarks in 1858 to establish a universally-recognized method by which Masons across the globe could operate. Mackey’s Landmarks have been studied and debated, yet remain the standard by which Freemasons meet and work. In his Encyclopedia of Freemasonry, Mackey makes the claim that, “Until the [...]

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History of Freemasonry

No one knows with certainty how or when the Masonic Fraternity was formed. A widely accepted theory among Masonic scholars is that it arose from the stonemasons’ guilds during the Middle Ages. The language and symbols used in the fraternity’s rituals come from this era. The oldest document that makes reference to Masons is the Regius [...]

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