"The secret of Masonry, like the secret of life, can be known only by those who seek it, serve it, live it. It cannot be uttered; it can only be felt and acted. It is, in fact, an open secret, and each man knows it according to his quest and capacity. Like all things worth knowing, no one can know it for another and no man can know it alone."
Dr. Joseph Fort Newton
"The real secrets of Masonry are never told, not even from mouth to ear. For the real secret of Masonry is spoken to your heart and from it to the heart of your brother. Never the language made for tongue may speak it, it is uttered only in the eye in those manifestations of that love which a man has for his friend, which passeth all other loves."
South Dakota Masonic
Messenger, Feb. 1975
"Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but really great people make you feel that you too can become great."
"When the country is in need, it has always been the soldier...
General Douglas MacArthur
"Freemasonry has endured not because of its antiquity, its influence, or its social standing, but because there have been so many who have lived it. The effectiveness of Masonic teachings will always be the measure by which the outside world judges Freemasonry; the proof of Freemasonry is in our deeds and it is in our deeds that Freemasonry is made known to non-Masons. The only way that the Craft can be judged is by its product. The prestige of Freemasonry lies squarely on the shoulders of each of us."
G. Wilbur Best
"The great lesson in life is to know that even fools are right sometimes."
If I might add: "Even a broken clock is correct twice each day"
Masonry is not a secret society. Everybody knows that the Masonic fraternity exists and no effort is made to hide the fact. It is only the wisdom of Masonry which is hidden, not because it is subtle, but because it is simple. Its secret is profound; not obscure.
From The Southern California Research Lodge
"There is not a subject so little understood by even its own members as that of Freemasonry. It is not in the strict sense an order. Its purpose is more clearly defined when it is called a fraternity, a brotherhood, or an institution. It is certainly not a club. Ritualism is not Masonry. The ritual is the vehicle which conveys the sublime truths to the heart and mind. If the forms and ceremonies through which the candidate passes fail to lift him to higher conceptions of life, duty and charity, then they are mere sounding brass and tinkling cymbal."
West Australian Craftsman
"When I am getting ready to reason with a man, I spend one-third of my time thinking about myself and what I am going to say and two-thirds about him and what he is going to say."
"The steps taken by the candidate -- initiation, passing and raising -- are, of course, important to the candidate, but of the elements of the degree, the explanatory lecture, is where we who are in charge of making Masons let the candidate down. The lecture is the educational part of the degree. We give it to the candidate immediately following a very emotionally draining experience when a good nap is uppermost in his mind. (This after loading him up with a Salisbury steak dinner). Shouldn't this educational process be developed into a different delivery system?
Norman Leeper, Editor
"Do you know why you are requested to raise your right hand when taking an oath? In ancient times people born in slavery were branded on the palm of the right hand and were not entitled to the privilege of taking an oath. The right hand was raised to show the administering official whether or not the palm was branded. If not marked, the person was freeborn and eligible to take an oath."
South Dakota Masonic
Messenger, Feb. 1975
"I have wondered at times about what the Ten Commandment's would have looked like if Moses had run them through the U.S. Congress."
ORIGINS OF THE CRAFT
Respecting the origin and early history of Masonry, men differ and probably will continue to differ. While some date its birth with the creation of the world, others trace it back to an age enveloped by the mist of time.
Allyn Weston, The Ashlar, Oct. 1857
"History does not entrust the care of freedom to the weak or timid."
"If a good person does you wrong, act as though you had not noticed it. They will make note of this and not remain long in your debt."
"A society without standards will be a society without stability and it will one day go down. Not only nations but whole civilizations have perished in the past for lack of righteousness. Hence the importance attached to the square of virtue and the reason why Masons call it the symbol of their Craft. It is the symbol of that moral law upon which life must be based if it is to continue."
(Brother Joseph Fort Newton)
"In 1861 a Pennsylvania minister wrote to Salmon P. Chase, Abraham Lincoln's Treasury Secretary, suggesting a recognition of God on our coins. 'In God We Trust' first appeared on the 1864 copper 2-cent piece when Congress authorized a new denomination with whatever legend Chase deemed appropriate. It was added to the quarter and most larger denominations in 1866 but not on the cent until 1909. In the mid-1950's Congress ordered the motto added to paper money."
The Southern California Research Lodge 'Fraternal Review', May 2004
"Freemasonry is an
attempt to organize harmony, and therefore it is essential that all its
arrangements for the promotion of concord should be of the most perfect
character and most delicately adjusted. Whatever tends in the least
degree to produce disagreement and discord, to cause a jarring and
clashing among the elements composing the society, or any of its
branches, must have a tendency to defeat the purposes of the
Institution, must in itself be destructive of the spirit of Masonry, and
must be something foreign to that spirit, something not to be
cultivated, but to be avoided by Masons.
The Masonic Monthly, February 1867
"A May 13, 2003 notice on the New York Mason's Web site was headlined 'Gov. George Pataki to become a Mason.' The New York Post for May 19, 2003, wrote that as it would be 'a grave sin' in the eyes of the Catholic Church, Gov. Pataki cancelled his plan to join the Masons. A statement from Most Worshipful Carl J. Fitje, Grand Master of Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of the State of New York included; 'While we were disappointed to learn that Governor Pataki has reconsidered his desire to become a Mason at this time, he will always be welcome to apply for membership at a later date."
The Southern California Research Lodge 'Fraternal Review', August 2003
"Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom. Mastering others is strength; mastering yourself is true power. If you realize that you have enough, you are truly rich."
Tao Te Ching
"The most terrifying words in the English language are: I'm from the government and I'm here to help."
"Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference in the world.
"If we ever forget that we're One Nation Under God, then we will be a nation
"The outer limit of your potential is determined solely by your own beliefs and our own confidence in what you think is possible."
"If you and I exchange a dollar, each of us would still have a dollar - BUT - if you and I exchange an idea, each of us would have two ideas."
"Leaders are made rather than born. Failing organizations are usually over-managed and under-led."
Warren G. Bennis
"There is a certain grave beauty in the practice of Masonic etiquette. The Masonic life as it is lived out in our assemblies is a conscious work of art, with each and every part coordinated to every other, and instinct with the feeling of the whole; if a man enters into that system without preparation or forethought, and trusting only his instincts, his manner will strike an awkward note, like a discord jangling across a strain of music; but if he has trained himself in his part and caught the spirit of the whole, the genius of Freemasonry will shine through his actions, will express itself through ritual, symbol, law, philosophy, fellowship and daily deed. To have one's self thus become a part of a great and living whole is a kind of satisfying pleasure nothing else can give, a participation in the very life of beauty, appreciated as much by the beholders as by the actor. This ability to confer pleasure upon one's fellows when gathered in communication or in ceremony is not the least of etiquette's rewards."
W. Henry G. Meacham, Grand
Lecturer, Grand Lodge of New York
"There are five different approaches to Masonry and only five. The Historical approach; the Philosophical approach; the Psychological approach; the Ethical approach; and the Ritualistic approach. There are no other approaches to Freemasonry. Now, we have stressed the historical approach; we have spent thousands and thousands of dollars; that is very important. We ... have spent thousands and thousands stressing ritualistic approach. But, my brethren, the most important approach - and I venture the assertion here we haven't spent one cent on it - is the ethical approach to Freemasonry. Why? Because Freemasonry is a way of life. I hope to live long enough, my brethren, to see as much emphasis placed on it as there is upon the historical approach and the ritualistic approach, important as they are."
Harold Reader, Grand
Secretary of Missouri, 1949
Let us separate the Square from the Compasses and study it alone, the better to understand its meaning and use. There is no need to say that the Square we have in mind is not a Cube, which has six equal faces and 12 perfect angles, deemed by the Greeks "a figure of perfection". Nor is it the square of the carpenter, one leg of which is longer than the other, with indices marked thereon for measuring. It is a small, plain Square, unmarked and with legs of equal length, a simple tri-square used for testing the accuracy of angles, and the precision with which stones are cut.
["A belief in immortality did not begin with Freemasonry... Below are examples of how other men have felt about immortality.
Parmenides of Elea,
515-440 B.C.: 'Being is without beginning and indestructible. It is
universal and without end. It is altogether, one, and continuous. '
Wayne Burk, 32° KCCH in
the February 2003 Fresno (CA) Scottish Rite Bulletin"]
"Masons do not worship in Lodge meetings. Each Mason freely prays as his faith dictates, regardless of who is leading the group prayer, because prayer is ultimately a personal conversation between a man and his Creator."
Gary Leazer, from the
Center for Interfaith Studies bulletin.
"The genius of Freemasonry is not our Masonic buildings and temples or the trappings of our organizations. It is not our great charities or community activities. It is not our beautiful rituals or their teachings! It is the 'practice of Freemasonry' by the Freemasons. Yet we cannot practice that which we do not know or understand. Thus Masonic education is the foundation for our Fraternity.
from the Occasional Bulletin of the Texas Lodge of Research
"Toleration, holding that every other man has the same right to his opinion and faith that we have to ours; and liberality, holding that as no human being can with certainty say, in the clash and conflict of hostile faiths and creeds, what is truth, or that he is surely in possession of it, so every one should feel that it is quite possible that another equally honest and sincere with himself, and yet holding the contrary opinion, may himself be in possession of the truth."
Brother Albert Pike, Morals and Dogma
To learn - To subdue my passions -To improve myself in Masonry.
March 08, 2015