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SRA 76 Monthly Magazine

Cover Story, The Value of Symbols Do you just belong? – A Poem Did You Know? Blue Lodge – Whence came the name? Hawick Lodge No. 111 Famous Freemasons – Will Fyffe Rays of Masonry The Old Past Master The First Workers in Metal Wisdom Did You Know? The Back Page – Quality V’s Quantity

Main Website – The Badge and Mystic Sign

Volume 16 Issue 3 No. 125 March 2020


In this issue: Cover Story ‘The Value of Symbols’

“A science of morality veiled in allegory, and illustrated by symbols.” This article looks at symbols and their value within Freemasonry. Page 6, ‘Do you just belong?’ A Poem Page 7, ‘Did You Know?’ Questions about the Craft. Page 9, ‘Blue Lodge – Whence came the name?’ One view of why we are called ‘blue’ lodges. Page 11, ‘Hawick Lodge No. 111. A History of one of our Old Scottish Lodges. Page 17, ‘Will Fyffe’ Famous Freemasons. Page 20, ‘Rays of Masonry.’ “You are Masonry” Page 20, ‘The Old Past Master.’ “The Masonry you make”, twelfth in the series. Page 22, ‘Reflections.’ The First Workers in Metal? Page 25, ‘Wisdom.’ What is Wisdom in Masonry? Page 26, ‘Did You Know?’ Page 31, ‘The Back Page.’ Quality versus Quantity.

In the Lectures website The article for this month is ‘The Badge and Mystic Sign.’ [link] 1

Front cover –A Study of Symbols from Pintrest..


The Value of Symbols. At one time, when very few were literate, the use of symbolism was widespread. It was a form of “visual shorthand” which suggested abstract concepts. Symbols were easily recognized, and understood. It did not matter where one lived, one would recognise most, if not all, of the symbols, although there may have been some local variations. When a series of symbols were strung together, (as with hieroglyphics) they could be used to tell stories and record history. Today in life we are surrounded by symbols, some exhorting us to drink Coca Cola, or buy a Mercedes, others define us as Christians, Muslims or Jews. There are symbols used to impose legal constraints upon us – we “Stop” when we see the red traffic light, we keep left or right on the road according to the sign or symbols. We use either the Ladies or Gents wash room... Academically, symbols are given to students as a measure of achievement in an examination, and so we can go on. Then there are symbols that depict the abstract, for example, “love” is often symbolised by a heart – because you can’t draw love. A skull represents “Danger” (another abstract) is defined by symbols such as a skull but also other symbols So what can we deduce from all of this? - A Symbol (usually a graphic depiction and not the written word have a meaning that can be clearly understood) Marketers are quick to take full advantage of symbols to influence consumers.

Companies spend fortunes promoting their logo or symbol. The connection is drummed up into the public through constant exposure and association because they realise that a symbol is a powerful substitute for many words. The Dictionary describes Symbolism as; A representation (visual or conceptual) of that which is unseen or invisible. The value of a symbol is its ability to elucidate; to compress into a simple, meaningful whole, readily grasped and retained; to provide a center for the shaping of conduct and belief. Let us now look at the use of symbols by using the VSL as the basis. There are many examples where symbols were used to illustrate morality, an exercise we engage in at all our meetings. The plumb line, a string with an attached weight for testing the perpendicular of a wall, is used half-a-dozen times in Scripture to illustrate the lack of uprightness displayed by the people and their deviation from that which is straight. These metaphors borrowed from the builder's art were used by the Prophets Isaiah and Amos, and mentioned in the Book of Kings and Lamentations. A study of the VSL will clearly show that the moral teachings contained therein run parallel with freemasonry therefore from these examples you can conclude that our symbols have a very real and similar meaning to that being used in the VSL. Although not a religion, Freemasonry uses allegorical symbols to teach philosophy concerning the nature of the creator, and humanities universal destiny. We (as Masons) are instructed that our symbols teach a system of morality (just as they did in biblical times.) 2


(If I hold up a can of coke you will readily recognise it as a symbol of refreshment and distinguish it from a Pepsi although both are colas) The meaning is quite recognizable. In fact, some of the world’s most successful symbols, Coca Cola or the Mickey Mouse head are so universally known that they could be distorted, sawn in half and recoloured and still be recognizable. For us in freemasonry, our symbols must be seen as a graphic representation of an abstract idea - one that has no direct visual equivalent. Our symbols can take on many meanings depending on the context. (If I hold up a square you will recognise it to be an emblem of morality the profane would recognise it as carpenter’s tools) There are other examples outside of freemasonry where a symbol can take on a multi meaning - take for example a cross. A cross on a school exercise book means something entirely different from a cross on a ballot paper and a cross on a road sign has no relationship with a cross on a church. Masonic symbols, take on meanings that are not always obvious. Our symbols are not regulated or defined in the way a traffic sign is. It is for this reason that we are encouraged to contemplate and study our ritual in order to take that personal message from each symbol and apply this towards our own perfection. Our Masonic tools or symbols define such fundamental values as the individual’s relationship with God, his neighbour and himself. They cross cultural and language barriers, and are timeless, yet the message is simple and readily understood. They teach 3

us to build upon a foundation of God, using the square of justice, the plumb line of rectitude, the compasses to restrain the passions, and the rule to divide our time into labour, rest and service Freemasonry gives us the choice as to how we should use these symbols in our daily life so as to achieve our own perfection. The definition of Freemasonry tells us that it is “a science of morality veiled in allegory, and illustrated by symbols” Our symbols illustrate for us the Mysteries of Freemasonry. The puzzle for some is why do we create the mystery? Coca Cola and other brands go out of their way to display their symbols and spend millions advertising the underlying benefits to the consumer. The company would certainly dismiss any advertising agent who sought to veil their symbols or give them a random or double meaning. There are however many answers to the question as to why we create mystery, but let us again be guided by the VSL. It is written “Do not cast your pearls before the swine lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces.”(Mathew 7:16) We are being warned that there is a genuine danger of sharing powerful information with those who are not ready for it or would abuse it. It is for the same reason that we hold certain matters confidential and in our heart, only to be shared with those who have been duly prepared. Now if we were to disclose that Freemasonry is solely a system of morality and say exactly what we stand for we would be creating a fixed definition restricted by


the use of words. This would impose a limit on our thoughts and we would not be able to discover the hidden wisdom of the lodge. The VSL tells us that we “must strive to enter through the straight and narrow gate” The Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu likewise said “to see the Tao, one must walk through the gate of mysteries, mysteries upon mysteries” As freemasons we also enter the degrees of knowledge through the gate. The steps we can take to uncover the mysteries is clear “Ask and ye shall receive, seek and ye shall find, knock and it will be opened to you” This should sound very familiar to all freemasons. Freemasonry is a science – a philosophy – a system of doctrines which is taught, in a manner peculiar to itself, using allegories and symbols Freemasonry requires that we do a lot of seeking and much knocking through meditation in order to unravel the mysteries of our Order. LET US CONSIDER A, B, C. are alphabetical letters but they can also be used as symbols which when assigned values can give them different meanings AN EXAMPLE “A” could represent one exhibit in a legal case and “B” another etc. OR when set out as a formula “A”= length, “B”= Breadth, and we were to say “A” multiplied by “B” then “C” would be area and this could be in Sq. Inches, Sq Miles etc ON THE OTHER HAND assign numbers to “A”, “B” & “C” and they could take on varying meanings

again. If “A” “B” & “C” were the points of a right angle triangle then a2 + b2 = c2 or the square of the hypotenuse equals the sum of the square on the other two sides (Pythagoras Theorem) ANOTHER EXAMPLE You are given a blank signed cheque, - to some this could be a symbol of a free meal, to others it could mean a new car or boat. The symbol being the cheque. Now if I were to endorse that cheque “Not to exceeding £100” that would be to create a definition and place a limit thereon and restrict your imagination In each of the examples I have given you the symbol has been defined. Masonic symbols would be the same if we were to impose clear and undisputable conditions upon them. Anything that is defined is restricted to definite bounds. Masonic symbols are not restricted they give the individual the opportunity to place whatever meaning or value they so comprehend, the ultimate being that they symbolise true goodness as understood by that individual. CONSIDER THIS CAREFULLY:“Do you believe in God?” “Define what you mean by God”, and when you have done so I will say “No I do not believe in God, because a God defined is a God limited – and a limited God is no God at all” So it is with all Masonic symbols, just as the Freemasons God, being the creator of all that has gone before and all that is to come 4


cannot be limited by definition, He is the creator of the universe and the same God of all who acknowledge Him as the Supreme Being. We refer to the Deity symbolically as The Great Architect. We as masons are moral, we were accepted as men of good repute when we entered but it is the acceptance of the meaning of our symbols that enables us to make ourselves better. Today in the 21st Century, accepted morality can often be in conflict with Masonic morality. We are greeted with new moral and social issues each day in the newspaper and these bid us farewell on the evening news. I refer to promiscuity, drugs, adultery, same sex marriage, abortion and the list goes on so called RIGHTS Freemasonry permits each individual to interpret and apply the lessons of the Craft as he sees best. It is this unique spirit of tolerance and freedom that frequently confuses opponents of the Fraternity. One mason places his interpretation upon a certain symbol or attribute of Freemasonry; another may take an entirely different view, and will cite evidence with which a third may be at entire variance; yet these three men can gather about our alters and in our

Lodge together in perfect amity. It is said that man has a triple nature; he has a body, and senses which bring him into contact with, and translate the meanings of, the physical world of earth, air, fire and water that is about him. He has the brain and a mind with which he reasons and understands about the matters that surround him. He has a “SOMETHING” beyond; call it a Soul or Heart or Spirit or imagination, call it, as you will. Masonic symbolism is the tool of abstract thought, which develops the soul or imagination just as food develops the body. The human mind is endowed with power which no one may set limit we have the right to choose how we live our life. As Masons we know that we could seek no wiser foundation to build on, year by year, than a foundation in God using the Square of Justice, the Plumb Line of rectitude, the Compasses to restrain the passion and the Rule by which to divide our time into labour, rest and service to our fellows. Out of this flow those qualities of Prudence, Temperance and Fortitude. Faith hope and Charity Thus using symbols, Freemasonry becomes a great system of morality with which the individual Mason is encouraged to understand and interpret the true meaning and purpose of life. To quote Albert Einstein – “Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge itself is limited, imagination encircles the world.” Think of anything you may desire - knowledge may tell you that you can’t afford it but with imagination you can own it.

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Freemasonry uses symbols because only by them can the Craft speak the language of the spirit, each to each, and because they form an elastic language, which each man can read for himself according to his ability to comprehend. Symbols form the only language, which is elastic, a vehicle of revelation, given during inspiration and used to interpret the experience. It is given to us at our initiation, when it appears as something new and take on a lasting significance through our journey as a fellow craft and master mason. They relate a man to that which should be of obvious concern. Take from Freemasonry its symbols and but the husk remains; the kernel is gone. Freemasonry without its symbols would not be Freemasonry at all it would be nothing more than a dogmatic association that would certainly not have stood the test of time. If you only hear the word of Freemasonry you will miss the meaning you must constantly live and learn from Freemasonry. Our symbols require interpretation, contemplation and study. As a Mason involved in labour you are encouraged not only to competently recite the workings of the Ritual, but also most importantly, reflect and apply their significance and meaning. “Brotherly love”, “Relief from suffering”, and “Truth”. No man is perfect; our symbols help us on the path to perfection. But these alone are not sufficient. Initiation alone never did, nor ever can, make a man a true mason. These ceremonies only lay the foundations and without exploring the true meaning of the symbols and using these as a blueprint for our lives can the superstructure be raised. Brethren look to our symbols – are they for you a source of light or darkness? The answer lays with you in the way you

interpret them. We all create our own reality. What we expect from life is what we receive. The VSL tells us “as you sow so shall you reap” If we seek trouble, disagreement, doubt, negativity in situations that is what we will experience. Life does not always go smoothly and so if we do not seek to really understand and put into practice what is taught by our symbols we cannot expect our path as freemasons to be smooth. We have been given the meaning and the tools – it is our response to these that will truly define us. Initiation alone never did nor ever can make a man a Mason it only lays the foundation. The true mason is made when he studies, interprets and implements the meaning of the symbols in his daily life. This Article by author By Bro Clive Herron of the Marine Lodge 627 I.C. Durban, South Africa.

DO YOU JUST BELONG? Are you an active member The kind that would be missed Or are you just contented That your name is on the list? Do you attend the meetings And mingle with the flock Or do you stay at home And criticize and knock? Do you take an active part To help the work along Are you satisfied to be The kind that "JUST BELONG"? Do you ever go and visit A member that is sick Or leave the work to a few And talk about the clique? Think this over, member, You know right from wrong Are you an active member Or do you "JUST BELONG"? 6


DID YOU KNOW? Question: In one of our normal closings the J.W. states that he comes from the West whither he has been in search of the g.s. of a m.m. Could you please explain why he went to the West to find what had been lost? Surely the secrets of knowledge were originally in the East so why do we allow this form of words? Answer: The late Harry Carr once remarked (Freemason at Work, p. 370) that he wished he could help with this problem but that it was 'always difficult to give a practical answer to a speculative problem'. Whilst recognising the judgement of so eminent a masonic scholar I should like to suggest two ways of unravelling the apparent conundrum that may commend themselves to brethren of differing standpoints. The first is to interpret the words in terms of the 'world' as understood when our rituals were being first formed and when English Freemasonry was still avowedly Christian in inference. Set in that context the words of the 1730 exposure by Prichard: Where are you going? To the West. What are you going to do there? To seek for that which was lost and is now found... Can surely be interpreted in terms of wise men from the East knowing that the culmination of all their knowledge has yet to be discovered. That would have been but a logical application in those days. The second way, however, and one perhaps more appropriate for our own time, is to think in terms of the Temple of Solomon. If one sought the fulfilment of all truth and 7

knowledge then one had quite literally to move from East to West in the temple precincts. The second degree tells us what was found in the approach westwards to the middle chamber and it was in the West that there lay the Holy of Holies. Is it not there that the true secrets of Hiram's building lay and are still to be sought?

Question: In the Third Degree Closing, we respond, ‘With gratitude to our Master we bend'. To whom does this refer? Does the W.M. also bend? Answer: A difficult problem upon which I can find no ruling, so that the following notes are simply a statement of my own opinions. I cannot accept the view that, when we say those words, we are thanking the W.M. for 'ratifying and confirming' the sub. s... 'with his sanction and approval........ Our ritual is singularly free from any such mass expressions of gratitude and I believe that, if any expressions of thanks were really intended, they would probably have been introduced at the moment when the Candidate is r ... d with the assistance of the Wardens. They might also have been introduced, quite logically, in the openings in all three Degrees, after the W.M. acknowledges 'the correctness of the s. ..' ' But the ritual never requires us to 'bend' to the W.M.; we simply give him the prescribed salutations. It seems to me that when we bend before 'our Master' in the Third Degree Closing we acknowledge our indebtedness to the Most High. My reasons are briefly as follows. Each of the Openings and Closings in all three Degrees concludes with a short prayer, invocation, or religious exhortation. In the openings of the Third Degree the W.M. promises to assist in repairing 'that loss, and


may Heaven aid our united endeavours'. In the Third Degree Closing, after the W.M. has '...confirmed ... etc, we bend in gratitude to the 'Most High-our Master' for his help. Thus the phrases 'in gratitude ... All glory to the Most High" are not a reply to the W.M.'S ratification etc., but the completion of the brief prayer in the Opening, when we ask for Heavenly aid. So, my own answer to the second question above, is that the W. M. also 'bends' with all the other Brethren. But in those Lodges where it is held that the words are an expression of gratitude to the W.M., he would not 'bend'. I posed the question to Bro. Roy Wells, and he made a suggestion that had not occurred to me, i.e., that we bend in gratitude to our Master, King Solomon, who ordained (in the terms of our legend) that the sub. s....... should designate all Master Masons throughout the universe ... It is true that Solomon's Temple forms the scenic, spiritual and symbolical background to all our Craft ceremonies, and that suggests that we might well express our gratitude to him in all three degrees, not only at one point in the third. I am inclined to doubt whether we do, in fact, bend in gratitude to King Solomon; but the conflicting views will make a useful subject for debate. Question: What are the 'Hebrew Characters' mentioned in the SW Lecture (or Lecture on the second Tracing Board) which are said to be "here depicted by the letter G". Answer: The letter G, in this instance stands for The G.G.O.T.U. The lecture to which you refer is usually accompanied, in our English ritual books, by an illustration of the second Tracing Board. Among other

details which not concern us here, it shows a winding staircase leading up to a long arched corridor that ends with a curtained doorway at the far end, which is presumably the entrance to the Sanctum Sanctorum. Above that doorway is an arched panel, and in that panel or near it, you will find the four Hebrew letters corresponding to our J.H.V.H., together forming the Tetragrammation, i.e. the 'Ineffable Name.' That is what is represented by the Letter G. There are many variations of this design but most of those in use today will correspond broadly to the one I have described here. Unfortunately, these drawings cannot agree with the Biblical description of the interior of the Temple, because they attempt to show, in a single picture, all the various details, many of which are imaginary or hypothetical, that are embodied in the Lecture. I must add, moreover, that in the majority of these designs, the 'Sacred Name' (sketched by artists who did not know anything about Hebrew lettering) is drawn so badly as to make the 'Word' unrecognizable except to the practiced eye. Finally, there is no shred of evidence, in the Biblical accounts of Solomon's Temple, of the Sacred Name, or the letter G (in Hebrew or in any other alphabet) being displayed in the Middle Chamber where, according to the Lecture, the Fellow-crafts are supposed to have seen it.

The Questions and answers from ‘Did you Know’ were collected from various constitutions across the world, and in no way reflect the views or thoughts of the editor and or his Lodge or Mother Constitution.

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‘BLUE LODGE’ WHENCE CAME THE NAME?

Why is our Lodge called a 'Blue' Lodge? In years past, it was known as the 'Master Lodge', but now this title is seldom used. Blue is emphatically the colour of Masonry and universal truth, and it is also the colour of the 'Vault of Heaven' that covers the astrologic universe. With the exception of flags, blue, along with white, are the only colours that should be used to decorate a 'Master's' Lodge. No records show when and where the name 'Blue' Lodge originated. It was a challenge for me to try to trace this mystery. I started with the Bible and found that the Jews held blue as a very important colour. The robes of the High Priests were blue. Blue was the colour of one of the curtains of the Tabernacle, where this veil represented the air we breathe. The Hebrew word for blue is 'TEK-E-LET' and is derived from the root dye that signified perfection. Blue is also prominent among the Gentile nations. Among the Druids, blue stood for truth. The Egyptians esteemed blue as the sacred colour, for in death the body of Amun, their principal god, was painted blue to show his exalted and heavenly nature. The ancient Babylonians clothed their idols in blue. The Chinese in their mystical philosophy represented blue as the symbol of deity, because it is compounded of black and red. They believe this colour to be a fit representation of obscure and brilliant, male and female, and of active and passive 9

principles. The Hindus assert that their god of wisdom, Vishnu, be represented by celestial blue. Among Medieval Christians, blue was considered as the emblem of immortality and fidelity. Beside the Degree 'for the 'Blue Lodge', the colour blue is prominent in many of the Scottish Rite degrees. But none of this historical information ties blue with the name 'Blue Lodge'. More research was needed so I turned to my friend Albert G. Mackey and his Masonic encyclopaedia. With their help I believe I have a direct link between the colour blue and our Master's Lodge. In Scotland, in the city of Edinburgh, is the Lodge of Journeymen. They have in their possession a blue blanket which has a long and noble history. In the year 1095 a number of Scottish masons followed Allen, Lord Steward of Scotland, to the Holy Wars in Palestine. They took with them a blue blanket which they used as a banner of identification. Upon this blanket were written the words of David from the 51st Psalm: 'Do good unto the pleasure to Zion and build thou the walls of Jerusalem'. Fighting under this banner, these valiant Scots were present at the capture of Jerusalem in 1099. When they returned to their homeland, they laid the banner at the Altar of St. Eloi, who was the Patron Saint of the Edinburgh Tradesmen. This altar was in the Church of St. Giles. Whenever there is a pageant, this blue banner is worn as a mantle that identifies the Masonic tradesmen. Please remember that Edinburgh is the capital of Scotland: and. as mentioned before, blue is a very important colour in the Scottish Rite. Our First Degree asks the question, 'Whence come you?' The reply,


'From a Lodge of the Holy Saints John at Jerusalem'. This statement is a firm tie of our lodge and Jerusalem. The Lodge of the Holy Saints John, Jerusalem, is named for our patron saint, St. John the Baptist. His stern integrity induced him to forego every minor consideration in discharging his obligation to God; with unshakable firmness, he met death rather than betray his duty to his Master. His festival is celebrated on June 24th by all Masons. St. John the Evangelist was introduced subsequent to the 16th century as our copatron saint. His constant effort to forward brotherly love and truth, plus his apocalyptic visions, though mysterious they may be, have placed him in the heart of every Mason. His festival is celebrated December 27. Let us return again to the Scottish Rite. When King Solomon's temple was completed, our Masonic Brothers split into two groups. One faction remained in the area of the temple and were later called the Knights of the East. The other faction travelled all over Europe where they received their Masters' wages and were called 'Knights of the East and West'. They brought with them new ideas and technologies in construction to Europe, and their stone structures are the only bright stars to emerge from the dark ages. The Knights of the East and West evolved into the Knights Templar. Their history is as follows. The Knights Templar were formed by nine French Knights to protect the pilgrims who travelled to Jerusalem to give offerings to the sepulchre of our Lord. They needed protection from the Arabs who continued to occupy the sea coast of Palestine and roads to Jerusalem and would plunder and do

great bodily outrage to the pilgrims. The Knights Templar's first Grand Master in the year 1118 was Hugh de Payens. Their last Grand Master James (or Jacques) de Molay in 1207. Their demise is the source of another lecture. The Scottish Rite lists the Knights of the East as their 15th degree, the Knights of the East and West the 17th and The Knights Commander of the Temple their 27th. This is yet another link between the Scottish Rite and our lodge and the events at Jerusalem. With this information in mind, we find that the Constitution of the Grand Lodge of Scotland is titled 'Saint Johns Masonry', and it declares that during this era this body recognized the practices of no degrees of Masonry but those of Entered Apprentice, Fellow craft and Master Mason. Now let us return to Edinburgh, and to the Masonic Lodge of Journeymen and their famous blue blanket. In the year 1482, these craftsmen again claimed fame by rescuing a Prince James III from a prison in the Castle. They then paid a 6,000 mark debt which Prince James III had made while preparing his son's wedding to Cecil, the daughter of Edward IV of England. The Queen of Prince James Ill, Margaret of Denmark, to show her gratitude and respect for the Craft, painted with her own hands on the blue banner a St. Andrew's Cross, a thistle and hammer. Beneath these she painted the following inscription: ‘Fear God and honour the king. Grant him long life and we shall ever pray to be faithful of his royal majesty until death.’ The king, hearing of this famous blue banner and its inscriptions, decreed that this blue banner should in all time coming be the 10


standard of the Craft. This blue banner should be unfurled in defence of their rights and protection of their sovereignty.

Hawick Lodge No. 111

Now we have a royal decree that this blue banner is to identify a lodge whose charter recognizes only the Apprentice, Fellow craft and Master Mason Degrees. I believe this Lodge of Journeymen and their blue blanket is the source of the name 'Blue Lodge'. No Brother could help but idolize with pride this famous band of Masons whose history is strong and rich with the love of God and patriotism. As stated before, nowhere is the name 'Blue Lodge' written in stone; but, using this history, I am satisfied this Lodge of Journeymen in Edinburgh, Scotland, with their famous blue blanket, is indeed the source of the title 'Blue Lodge'. Sourced from the Fall 1989 Magazine of the Grand Lodge of Missouri.(Please take note, that views held in this article are not necessarily those held by the editor of SRA76 and or the Grand Lodge of Scotland, but are in fact those of the author of the piece. Ed.

Freemasonry is not about how good a man you are….. ….. It’s about how good a man you want to be. Robert Herd

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Sometime prior to 15th March 1768, a group of Masons gathered together in the Town of Hawick, the object of this meeting was to discuss making representations to the Grand Lodge of Scotland in Edinburgh, to form and raise a Lodge of Freemasons within the town. As a result of this assembly of Masonic Brethren, an application for a Charter of Erection was made to the Grand Lodge. The application was successful and on the 15th March 1768, a regular ‘speculative’ lodge of Freemasons was granted a Charter by the Grand Lodge. Although there are no records prior to this date, there is little doubt that an ‘operative’ Masonic Lodge existed in Hawick for many years before, as can be seen by the names of the Brethren who had been members of an ‘independent’ Lodge with the town. Some forty seven brethren attended the first meetings of the ‘new’ Lodge when it was formed, and as there are no records of them having gone through the ceremony of becoming a Freemason at this time, the must have joined years before. This was a common occurrence throughout Scotland


during the mid-eighteenth century when old ‘operative’ lodges became speculative. The ‘new’ Lodge coming under the rule of the Grand Lodge in Edinburgh, was originally given number 141, (years later, Lodges were re-numbered and in 1816, Grand Lodge adjusted the Roll of Lodges throughout Scotland and Hawick was issued with number 108 and later it became number 111 in 1828), and met on a regular basis, usually in the back room of a tavern, some of the early meetings were held in the Commercial Inn, later they would hold their meetings in the Cross Keys Inn in the town. The Name of the Lodge also went through a change, as can be seen on the Charter, it was named ‘Hawick Lodge’ (there is no ‘THE’ before Hawick!) but by 1802 it became known as Hawick St. John’s Lodge, and remained like that until the beginning of the 1920’s, when the Brethren of the Lodge decided to revert back to the original name, and continues to this day. Why call themselves a St. John’s Lodge? Well at this time in Scottish Lodges held their meetings on Saint’s days, the two most important being winter St. John’s, 27th December, and summer St. John’s 24th June. Both the Saint John’s are synonymous with Scottish Freemasonry and is the most common name for a Lodge to be called. The Lodge has a number of pieces of old furniture and artefacts which have the old St. John carved in to them, still in use today. As was expected during those early days, Masonic Lodge played a big roll in the laying of Foundation stones on many public and private buildings. It was common for large processions to be held, followed by an extravagant ceremony in laying the foundation stone, which happened numerous times and attended by Lodges

from all over the Borders, at which Hawick Lodge took the lead role. Sir Walter Scott had been requested by the Lodge to lay the stone, but could not attend, so the Master of the Lodge, Brother Francis Ballantyne laid the stone with full Masonic Honours. The Lodge is fortunate that they have all the minute books from 1768, although there are gaps in some years, the records are well kept at periods, until meeting became less and less, and candidates for admission into the Lodge became fewer. The situation became worse until in 1833, a letter was sent by the Lodge to the Grand Lodge informing them, “It is with painful feelings that I have to acquaint you that out Lodge is in a very depressed state.” With the result that the Lodge was removed from the Grand Lodge roll, the Charter was recalled and the Lodge went into a state off dormancy for almost 23 years. In the late 1857, a small band of four Brethren, Francis Pasley, William Waldie, John Kedie and William Davidson met in Mrs Grieve’s Crown Inn to examine a chest which contained the jewels belonging to the Hawick St John’s Lodge. Eight old jewels were found, however the chest was found to have forced open by someone, anything else which had been kept in the chest, was no longer there. This meeting is minuted in the Minute book, and following that tentative step, the Lodge sprang back into life in 1860. The first meeting to be held for years was on 24th April 1860, when older Brethren decided to try and resuscitate the Lodge making contact the Grand Lodge of Scotland. A letter was received informing the Brethren that the petition from the Hawick Lodge, praying for the old Charter to be returned would be discussed in August 12


by the Grand Committee, meanwhile, the Lodge was given temporary permission and dispensation to work degrees, the Lodge would be numbered, 407. The Lodge petition was granted and the Lodge decided the time was right to find suitable accommodation to hold the Lodge meetings, and in February 1861, the meetings were held in the Industrial School (Ragged School). The Lodge continued to meet there until the Brethren moved to the Masonic Hall in 1874. It was customary for the meeting night to be on a Tuesday, after moving to the school, the meeting night was changed to a Friday. The Brethren were determined that the Lodge would not fall back into a state of disrepair, so a set of formal rules and regulations were approved, which laid down the minimum number of brethren to be present and the fees that each Candidate was required to pay, to join the Lodge. Also, a subscription of 3 (old) pence to be paid quarterly, and a list of fines for non-attendance, especially the important winter St. John’s Meeting, the fine being 1 Shilling. (a fair sum in 1860) That same year, a ballot box was used for all applicants into the Lodge, and a fund for Widows and Orphans was mooted. There is no doubt the lodge was once again on sure footing, for after Grand Lodge was petitioned in 1862, the number 111 was returned to the Lodge. The following year, another Lodge within the town of Hawick was established, Lodge St. James, BURA No.424. Quickly the Lodges worked together and met in harmony that is peculiar amongst Freemasons, and both Lodges cooperated in the laying of the foundation stone at the Corn Exchange with full Masonic honours, when 20 lodges were present and 310 Masons in attendance. It was during this period when one of Hawick’s most famous 13

sons joined Lodge 111, Bro., Henry Scott Riddell, the author of ‘Scotland Yet’ who would become the Bard of the Lodge. On 15th March 1868, the Lodge celebrated the 100th anniversary of being Chartered by the Grand Lodge of Scotland, by marching through the town in procession to St. Mary’s church, then to the Corn Exchange Hall where 132 Brethren sat down to dinner, followed by a Grand Ball in the evening. Still the Lodge continued to prosper, with large numbers of candidates joining the Lodge, then in August 1879, the brethren of the Lodge gathered at Teviothead Cemetery to inter their late Bard, Bro., Henry Scott Riddell. The meeting place of the Lodge was causing some concern for the Brethren, for in 1874 they had been told they would have to vacate the premises where they met. So it was decided it was time to look for their own meeting hall, and it was agreed to buy for the West U.P. Hall at Myreslawgreen for £350. The Masonic Hall was consecrated by the Substitute Provincial Grand Master and 120 Brethren paraded through the streets of the town, followed by a dinner and a Grand Ball in the evening. The new Masonic Hall quickly became a burden to the Brethren, as it required extensive alterations and repairs to make it suitable for use as a Masonic Hall, and all too soon serious debts mounted up. The brethren of the Lodge, mindful of the past, resolved to the clear the debts and put the Lodge on a sound financial basis, and so organised a series of fund raising events in aid of much needed funds. Accordingly in 1886 a bazaar held over three days in the Town Hall, and in October the income from the bazaar had raised £400 for Lodge funds,


more than enough to cover all the debts and then some. In 1882 the new water works at Acreknowe was opened with Lodge 111 and several other Lodges in attendance. The Lodges marched in procession behind the saxhorn band through Buccleuch Street, Wilton, High Street, Howgate, Loan and later adjourned to the Station Hotel for dinner. That same year, a stalwart of the Lodge Bro., William Waldie one of the original four brethren who resuscitated the Lodge in 1857 died. Bro., Waldie had held office for 56 years in the Lodge, he attended Hawick Moor and it is reported that he never missed a Common Riding for 71 years. A curious minute appears in late 1891 when it was noted that a Bro., Frank Scott had returned from holiday in America and had brought back with him a ‘Gramophone’ the latest invention of Mr. Edison and entertained the Brethren of the Lodge with it. This just may have been the first demonstration of a record player in Hawick. Processions were a common feature for Masonic Lodge throughout Scotland, and Hawick was no exception, the minutes record numerous torchlight parades where the members would march through the town, always accompanied by either one or two bands. In 1894, it was announced that a desirable property, the E.U. Chapel was for sale, and that the Lodge should consider buying. One member declared that this was a ‘foolish idea’ to sell the present hall, as the new railway was most likely to come through this way and make the property more valuable, the railway bypassed the property. That same year, Lodge 111 was prospering; attendances were high with 301 members on the books, and 170 of that number paying an

annual subscription, so much so, they were able to grant a number widows and orphans sums of money from their Benevolent fund. At the turn of the Century, the Lodge was busy with various events and meetings, the centenary of Henry Scott Riddell, attending the foundation stone laying at the Tweed Bridge, Peebles, another process, this time held to celebrate the surrender of Pretoria. Electricity came to Hawick and the cost of installing in the Lodge was £35, the foundation stone of the new library and a memorial tablet was erected at Teviothead Cottage in memory of Henry Scott Riddell. Then in July 25th 1908 a momentous occasion occurred when the Brethren of Hawick Lodge and members of St. David’s Lodge No. 36, Edinburgh, when they made the first joint pilgrimage to the Memorial Cairn to Henry Scott Riddell at Teviothead. This event began in 1908 has been made faithfully every year by the two Lodges and continues to this year, where at the foot of the Cairn, a eulogy is given to his name, Scotland Yet is sung along with a toast being drunk, and then halfway down the hill, a soloist sings the Glen sae Green. In March 1910, an old cupboard was found containing the old bible dated 1766 and which had been used at the erection of the Lodge in 1768, along with other relics. It was agreed that a book-case be purchased to display the items, the book-case and the original Bible are still in the Lodge’s possession, and was used in the 250th Anniversary re-dedication ceremony along with the Service of thanksgiving on the 17th of March 2018. In 1914 with the outbreak of the Fust World War, the annual meeting held on Winter St. John’s day was cancelled, a souvenir ticket 14


was produced and sold for 2/6d with the proceeds going to charity. The Lodge was advised that their hall was commandeered by the military, but gave it up the following year, probably due it being unsuitable. This year was the start that saw vast numbers of soldiers joining the Lodge, and large numbers of visitors attending; this was due to the great number of soldiers billeted at Stobs Camp. The Minute book records men being initiated into the Lodge and leaving for France the same night, it has been estimated that over half the membership of the Lodge joined the war, with a number of the Members being wounded, close relatives being lost and a number of Members of the Lodge paying the supreme sacrifice. At the end of the war, the Lodge held a Lodge of Sorrow to the memory of those Brethren of the Lodge who had died during the Great War. This was held in St. John’s Parish Church to remember the eleven fallen brethren; Major William Beattie, Captain Robert Maxwell, Lieutenant W. Barrie, Sergeant G. Scott, Privates James Rae, George Henderson, Adam Howieson and Sapper Ron Cameron. At the end of the War, the Lodge saw at great upsurge in the number of Brethren joining, in 1919 there were 79 new members in one month, and on 30th May, 123 Brethren attended a Lodge meeting. The membership at this period in time had vastly increased and it was decided to look for larger premises in the town, it’s no wonder, the roll book records that there were 522 active members of the Lodge, and between May 1919 and May 1920, there were 142 new members of the Hawick Lodge entered into the books. In December 1919, the Lodge Committee proposed that the existing premises be altered at a cost of £2075, the Lodge funds 15

amounted to £500 with yearly subscription of £500. However in February 1920 the treasurer reported that the amount required for the alterations had been reached and tenders put out for reconstruction of the building. By the end of the year, the rebuilding program was rescinded and a proposal to purchase the property in Commercial Road previously owned by Innes Chambers & Co, Tweed Merchants, which had been destroyed by fire the previous year, and to convert the building into a Masonic Lodge Room. The premises were bought for £400 and the foundation stone was laid with Masonic honours in March 1922, preceded by a procession through the town and headed by the Saxhorn Band, a dinner was held in the Town Hall following the ceremony. The building was consecrated on 16th December 1922 with 235 Brethren being present, a report recalls, “the number present strained the capacity of the Lodge room to its utmost.” The old Lodge room which had been used as a lodge for over 48 years was closed on November 24th 1922 and sold later for £600. Between the War years, the Lodge continued to grow, the numbers on the Roll show 582 members, and in 1923 it was decided to change the meeting nights to a Wednesday. Bro., Tom G. Winning the Master of the Lodge was installed as the Grand Secretary of the Grand Lodge of Scotland that year, and in 1926 it was decided to petition Grand Lodge to change the name of the Lodge back to the Original name, Hawick Lodge No. 111, this was granted in August 1926, which remains to this day. One historical note is that the sword and medals belonging to the late Bro., Major


William Beattie MC were gifted to the Lodge. These are still in possession of the Lodge, and the sword is used to this day by the Lodge Tyler, who co-incidentally is named Bro. William Beattie. When war was declared in 1939, the annual pilgrimage to the Cairn at Teviothead was suspened for the duration; however it is pleasing to note that a small band of Brethren continued to visit the bard’s grave and place a wreath in memory of Bro. Henry Scott Riddell. As with the First World War, a large number of gentlemen form Stobs joined the Lodge, and the Lodge premises were requisitioned by the military, and meetings were held elsewhere, Lodge regained the Lodge Room in October 1946. It was reported in the Minutes of the Lodge that 80 members of the Lodge had gone to war and 72 returned, although a large number had been wounded. A church service for those who died was held on 19th January 1947. After the war it was decided to spend money on the Lodge hall, and affect some major repairs. A new roof was laid, and in 1951, the Lodge received a visit from the Grand Master Mason who remarked on the simplicity of the Hawick Lodge 111 Temple, something that is still a feature of the Lodge to this day. In April 1965, the Lodge decided once again to change the meeting nights from Wednesday to a Thursday, which continues to be the meeting night to this day, and in 1967 the roll book notes there were 259 members of the Lodge. The following year in March 1968 saw the 200th Anniversary of the granting of the Lodge Charter, the Master of the Lodge this year was Alex Burgon, who was also present at the 225th

Anniversary and the 250th Anniversary of the Lodge. In 1974 alteration to create a new lounge were made, with a new bar, new seating and completely re-decorated. The cost a large amount of money and the Ladies Committee of the Lodge worked tirelessly to raise the required amount. The Lodge continued to hold its meetings on a regular basis, continuing to attract new members and in 1993 held its 225th Anniversary of the granting of the Lodge charter when Bro. Michael Laidlaw was the Master of the Lodge. Since that day in 1993 the Lodge has continued to meet and hold its meetings in Commercial Road, various changes have occurred over the years, many well known faces have passed on, but the spirit of the Lodge still remains. Hawick Lodge No. 111 is very fortunate to a have a number of hard working dedicated members, and as we stand on the brink of celebrating the 250th Anniversary of the Lodge receiving its Charter, without this band of Brethren, the Lodge would not have survived the previous 250 years. The Lodge has had a lustrous past, and can look forward to an even more brilliant future, and now as we have move beyond our 250th Centenary, each of the Brethren of Hawick Lodge No. 111 can look at our past History and the wonderful traditions which have been entrusted to our care, and try to emulate those who came before us, and, by supporting Lodge become part of the Lodge’s history. Hawick Lodge No. 111 has a proud history in the Auld Grey Toun, long may it continue. © J. Stewart Donaldson, Hawick 2018 This updated and condensed version of the History of Hawick Lodge No.111 written by the editor of SRA76. (Please visit the 111 website at this link; here.

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Famous Freemasons Will Fyffe ‘I Belong to Glasgow’

to blame and the fall was completely accidental. It is reported that Will fainted and overbalanced, fracturing both arms and sustaining serious head injuries. Will Fyffe was born on 16th February 1885 in Dundee, and would go on to become one of Scotland’s top music hall artistes, and during the 1930’s and 40’s a star of stage, screen and recording music. He would go on to write and perform one of the most famous songs of its generation, and unwittingly gave the City of Glasgow its anthem, ‘I Belong to Glasgow.’ Born into a theatrical family, Will made his debut aged 6 years old in his father’s touring company, and gained invaluable experience as a character actor as they travelled from town to town. In his twenties, Fyffe joined Will Haggar Jnr’s Castle Theatre company, touring the South Wales Valleys from its base in Abergavenny. Fyffe and his wife feature in an advert dated 1911. Then in 1914 Fyffe made his screen debut when a pioneer silent film producer (Will Haggar Snr), cast him in the film, The Maid of Cefn Ydfa.

Will Fyffe died on December 14 1947, after falling from a hotel bedroom window in St Andrews, Fife. He was 62. Fyffe had been recuperating after an operation on his right ear at the St. Andrew’s hotel he owned. It was later suggested that Fyffe had fallen from his suite window in a state of drunkenness, or perhaps he might have jumped. However, it was dizziness in the wake of a surgical operation that was held 17

Soon World War 1 began and Fyffe was conscripted in 1917 aged 32. Fyffe applied for exception on the grounds of serious hardship and that his occupation was of national interest. This application was dismissed and he appealed against the ruling. In 1918 he appealed again and his doctor stated that, ‘Mr. Fyfe is suffering from a septic catarrh of the nose and pharynx which has extended up through the Eustachian tubes to both ears causing middle ear mischief.’ Will Fyffe lost that appeal as well! After the war, Will Fyffe became in great demand as a character actor and starred in


dozens of productions with many of the most famous film stars of the time. And although he well known for his on screen roles, Fyffe was also a successful music hall artist (singer-songwriter and comedian), creating a succession of comic characters, whose story he narrated with his unique form of delivery. Will would start his song, then pause in the middle to give a monologue with further detail of the song's storyline, before resuming the song where he left off. Will Fyffe had the ability to create a character and then seem to actually be that character. Although Will Fyffe wasn't as good a singer as his slightly older contemporary, Harry Lauder, his apprenticeship made him a far more subtle and wittier impersonator; Lauder could only impersonate a historical kind of "Scotsman", which was a weirdly clothed and exaggerated version of himself, whereas Fyffe was alive to the present in all its variety., which caused him to write his most famous song. The story goes that in the 1920’s (the date is unclear) Will Fyffe met a drunk at Glasgow’s Central train station. According to Albert Mackie's The Scotch Comedians (1973), the drunk was "genial and demonstrative" and "laying off about Karl Marx and John Barleycorn with equal enthusiasm". Fyffe asked him: "Do you belong to Glasgow?" and he replied: "At the moment, at the moment, Glasgow belongs to me." The rest as they say, is History! It is supposed that Fyffe went back to his lodgings after this meeting and wrote the song, with its most famous chorus; "I belong to Glasgow, Dear old Glasgow town But something's the matter with Glasgow

For it's going round and round. I'm only a common old working chap As anyone here can see, But when I get a couple of drinks on a Saturday Glasgow belongs to me." Will Fyffe had written the song with Harry Lauder in mind and asked him if he would use it. Lauder read the song and said, 'No, I never sing songs in praise of drink.' Will Fyffe looked slightly baffled, and asked the great Lauder about "A Wee Deoch an' Doris" to which the reply was, 'You see, I put all the stress on the word "wee" so, instead of being a song that's praising drink, it's really warning people against taking too much.' So by refusing the song Harry Lauder unwittingly helped Will Fyffe and it became his theme song. 'I belong to Glasgow' would become one of the most popular songs of it's time. In fact, ‘I Belong to Glasgow’ is fondly satirical song about drink and the brotherly sentiments that sprang awake from its effects regularly on a Saturday night. In 1937, Fyffe appeared in the Royal Command Performance at the London Palladium, one of numerous appearances, and became regarded as Queen Elizabeth`s favourite entertainer. As one local commentator put it: ".. we are sure the lasting thrill for us all was the finale, Will Fyffe, a wonderful Scottish comedian, was top of the bill. To finish, he sang a song. On the second chorus, the scenery changed completely, and down the aisles came Scottish Pipers. The artists all appeared around a rostrum in front of the orchestra, and we filled the stage, in Scout uniform complete with red scarf. It was the greatest thrill of our young 18


lives. As the National Anthem was played, we faced the Royal Box and sang as we had never sang before." In 1939 Fyffe was the ninth most popular British star at the box office. He was appointed a CBE in 1942. He was so popular that the Empire Theatre in Glasgow ran a 'Will Fyffe' competition, with dozens of entrants singing I belong to Glasgow. Heavily disguised as himself, Fyffe entered the competition for a bet, but he could only win second prize! A week after his tragic death, Will Fyffe was laid to rest in Glasgow Western Necropolis on 17th December 1947, bus gravestone simply says, Will Fyffe, 18851947. ‘I belong to Glasgow.’ Brother Will Fyffe was initiated in St. John's Lodge Shotts, No. 471 in 1907, he later became a member of the Thalia Lodge in London, this Lodge was mainly for 'Theatricals' the name comes from the Muse of comedy and pastoral poetry. He is known to have visited Lodges in Canada and the USA on his tours there’ Will Fyffe was always happy to give his services to any benevolent cause, and though his professional work in the theatre mitigated his attendance as often as he would have wished, he was ever ready to join the Festive board and entertain. (A good mason and one of nature’s gentlemen.) From Memories of a Masonic minstrel by F. Elliot Dobie GLOS74

Finally from the website of Lodge St. Andrew No. 48, we read this wonderful Masonic reminiscence; Many present will recall that memorable night (50 years ago) when, amongst our 19

artistes, we had the great Scottish character comedian Will Fyffe! I sat near Will during a working of the Third Degree – most excellently worked by your Right Worshipful Master at that time, my very great friend, Bro. John Stuart. Never once during the whole of that ceremony was Will's attention diverted from the proceedings. Later, after making a most generous contribution to the harmony - and he was taking his departure - he said to me: "Man, I wish I could have stayed to the very end, but I'm leaving in seven hours for an unknown destination to entertain the men of the Merchant Navy, and, of course, that must come first." And then he said, "But man, this has been a graun' break!" Many years ago (2002), I was in touch with Will Fyffe Junior regarding his father’s Masonic career and he informed me he still had his father’s regalia. Also notice the signature on the photograph. SRA76 Editor Will Fyffe was no sentimentalist. He sang comic songs. He sang them brilliantly, and he never considered that fame imposed upon him the obligation of extending his repertoire to include the maudlin, the moral, or the heavily philosophical. That is perhaps one of his highest distinctions. (Taken from Will Fyffe’s obituary) This article by the editor of the SRA76 magazine has been compiled from a Variety of sources freely available on the internet, some of which are; The Website of Lodge 76 The Website of Lodge St. Andrew No. 48. Correspondence fro Will Fyffe Jnr. 1974 Grand Lodge of Scotland Yearbook. Website; Memento Mori Will Fyffe, Obituary The Encyclopaedia of Vaudeville And many others, thanks to all.


Rays of Masonry “You Are Masonry� What is Masonry? Let us for the moment lay aside the general definitions. Let us even ignore for the moment our own conception of our time-honoured Institution. There is a great Temple under construction. Men are busy and have been busy for centuries in the erection of this magnificent edifice. Let us call it the Temple of Life. There is a beauty beyond the power of words to express. There is a sacred atmosphere that inspires every worker to do more than his share of the work. There is work, but it is not the burdensome toil of the slave. Every worker is a king in his own right. There is a communism of character. All men working together, each for the good of all. What will mar the tranquility of this scene? Just the fact that men are always looking forward to a greater beauty than they know at the present. They seek a Finished Beauty. The quest is in vain. Today is the only victory on the morrow that he has not achieved today. Then the awful tragedy. The day when there are no designs upon the trestleboard. Man's inhumanity to God has caused the work to cease. The spirit is killed. The beauty that was there is now cold and without form. Who is responsible for the darkness that now covers the Temple of Life? I am to blame. You are to blame. We failed to see that the Spirit was in the building of the Temple, not in the completed edifice. The Spirit of Masonry is in the Mason. Dewey Wollstein 1953. This is the last in the series of Rays of Masonry articles which started it in Feb 2012, Issue 60.

The Masonry you Make "Well, I know you'll be glad to hear I am through learning the Work!" announced a young brother to the Old Past Master, "One more lesson and I'll know all about Masonry!" "That's fine, son. I congratulate you!" answered the Old Past Master. "Some conceit!" murmured another brother, as the satisfied young brother moved away. "I've been studying Masonry many years and I don't think I know all about it, by a long chalk!" "Of course you don't, and neither does he. But we all have to learn of the Masonry we make for ourselves." "Oh, do you think so? I thought we learned of the Masonry our ancient brethren had made for us!" "That, too, of course. But the Masonry they made for us is the Masonry which can be 20


written down, or put in symbols, or taught by word of mouth. It is a concrete thing; a thing of words and phrases, of symbols and figures, of stone and wood and temple and rough ashler and square and compasses. But the inner Masonry... that we make for ourselves. "Do you ever read Ingersoll? Somewhere he says 'an honest God is the noblest work of man' and thousands of people have shuddered away from the sentence and calls it blasphemy. But they fail to understand what the great agnostic meant. Our modern conception of the Great Architect of course falls infinitely short of reality, but at least we do not do him the injustice of confining Him within the limits of our human frailties. But up through the ages man has limited his gods and his God, according to himself. The gods of Greece and Rome (to go no further back) were gods and goddesses who felt jealousy, anger, revenge. They interfered in the affairs of men for their own pleasures. They were made in the image of men who made them! Later, God was a cruel tyrant, who sanctioned the torments of the Inquisition and loved those who were wicked in his name... at least, such was the middle ages' conception of Deity. Only within a few hundred years has the world as a whole come to consider God as the allwise, all-loving, all-merciful, all-tender Father of us all. This was what Ingersoll meant when he spoke of the honest God as the noblest work of men; and honest conception of a God infinitely wonderful and beautiful, is a noble conception. "Masonry is a conception. After one gets through learning the ritual, the mere words and phrases, he begins to absorb the philosophy and moral system of Masonry. Still later he begins to carry Masonry in his daily life and live by it. Later on... but wait 21

a minute. We have word Masons to whom the ritual is the whole. We have Masons to whom the symbolism is the whole thing, and who see nothing beyond the inner meanings to squares and compasses and stones and angles. We have others who add to this, philosophy of Masonry, but to whom Masonry is yet a perfect system which can be learned in its entirety by those who apply themselves. "But there are others... more every year, thank God!... who make their own Masonry, beyond that of the books and the lodge, the word and the symbol. To these, Ingersoll might have said that 'an honest Masonry is the noblest work of the Craft' with no more irreverence than he intended in his famous epigram. "Masonry, to such thinking men, is illimitable. It has no end. It is as infinite as space, as unending as time, as distant in boundary as the faintest nebula. It is not a thing of earth only; it encompasses the universe, and joins man's hands with God. This is the Masonry we make for ourselves, and, could what we make be measured, its proportions would be exactly the proportions which are our own. For the hidden Masonry we make is large or small, wide or cramped, beautiful or ugly, grave or gay, useful or ornamental, fine or doss, exactly as are we. "In each of us is an idea conception of all we would attain. We have our ideal man, our ideal woman, our ideal job, our ideal position, our ideal happiness. Some of us are so inarticulate we cannot express them; some of us are so inchoate in our thinking we cannot clearly visualize them, but they are there, these ideals, each and every one a measure of what we are. "And we have, also our ideal of Masonry, the hidden Masonry we make, each man for


himself. Your inner temple is not like mine and mine is not like yours, though each may be beautiful and perfect; two faces may be equally lovely, you know, yet totally unlike. "To my way of thinking, we are better Masons as we grow our inner Masonry for ourselves, as we perfect it and polish it, and raise it higher and higher. It is sadly true that no man may teach another how to build this hidden temple, but it is beautifully true that all of us may build the better by getting for ourselves better working tools. And the working tools with which we as Craftsmen build our own inner, hidden temple of Masonry, into which none may ever step but ourselves and God; the rough and perfect ashlar, square and plumb, trowel and compasses, by which we build this edifice, are available for us all. Our young friend has one, when he secures a perfect working knowledge of the ritual. The student has another, when he has mastered most of the symbolism. The doctor has a third, when he understands and can formulate the philosophy of Masonry, and all of us get a new edge to our tools as we live according to Masonic light and gain in Masonic experience." "The Old Past Master stopped and looked off, as if he saw a vision. The brother to whom he spoke sighed. "I wish," he said, "I might have the inspiration of looking at your temple of Masonry that I might make mine better." This is the twelfth article in this our regular feature, ‘The Old Past Master,’ each month we will publish in the newsletter one of these interesting and informative pieces by Carl Claudy.

The First Workers in Metal. The first of anything is always a subject of great interest, Masonic or otherwise. Here, in the person of Tubal Cain, we have the very first person in the world's history to whom the Craft owes anything. There are of course, those who might, with a certain amount of justice, say that if it had not been for Adam and Eve there would have been no Freemasons at all; but we may dismiss their claim with the suggestion that neither of them was aware what benefit was being conferred on the world, and it was therefore quite unconsciously that they acquired any right to the regard of the Craft. But, in Tubal Cain there is one who of set purpose rendered legitimate service, and who consequently is respected wherever Freemasons meet. Let us first look into his family connections. He was one of the sons of Lamech and Zillan his wife. There was another wife named Adah, and these two ladies have between them the distinction of being the first females to be referred to by name in the history of the world, after Eve. The family comprised three sons and a daughter, all of them of note in the history of the world of invention. TUBAL CAIN was the first worker in metals. The two metals specifically mentioned being brass {bronze) and iron. His sister named Naamah, is credited with having discovered the art of weaving grasses. On the other side of the house were the two sons of Adah, called respectively Jabal and Jubal. The 22


former of these 'was father of all such as dwell in tents and have cattle', and the other, Jubal, was the 'father of all such as handle the harp and the organ {pipe).' According to the account given of this gifted family by Josephus, the Hebrew historian, it would appear that Tubal Cain 'was addicted to martial exercises', which probably means that from time to time he found himself involved in various quarrels, and was driven to find for himself some weapon more effective than the bow and the arrow. Tubal Cain is referred to by one writer as CHRYSOR, possibly a corruption of the Hebrew 'choresur' meaning a smith or worker in fire. 1 Eusebius, the Christian historian, has preserved writings by some unknown person, who probably flourished in the time of Gideon, from which it would appear that Tubal Cain was at one time identified with Hephaestus, who in the Greek mythology corresponds with Vulcan in the Roman. Hephaestus invented fishing hooks and was the first navigator. Bishop derives the name 'Vulcan' from Tubal by an etymological process that does definite credit to his ingenuity, but which is not entirely convincing. Thus the worship of Vulcan may be traced to the estimation in which his prototype was held, and he goes on to institute a similar parallel between Jubal and Apollo. Exactly how this distinguished craftsman, Tubal Cain, came to be saddled with Masonic responsibility is not known. His first introduction to Freemasonry is to be found in the 'legend of the Craft'. This is the name given to certain old records written in 1 Encyclopaedia of Freemasonry And Its Kindred Sciences, Volume 4: S-Z - By Albert G. Mackey

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the fourteenth, fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. Many of these old manuscripts have been lost. From one of them, happily preserved, and known as the Dowland Manuscript, we extract the following; 'Before Noahs Flood there was a man called Lamech, as it is written in the Bible in the Book of Genesis, and this Lamech had two wives, the one Adah and the other Zillah. By his first wife he had two sons, Jabel and Jubal. Jubal. By the second wife he had a son and a daughter. All these four children founded the beginning of all the sciences in the world. The elder son Jabel founded the science of Geometry and he departed flocks of sheep and lambs in the field, and first wrought houses of stone and wood. His brother Jubal founded the science of Music, songs on harp and organ. The THIRD brother, Tubal Cain founded smithcraft of gold, silver, copper and iron, and the daughter founded the craft of weaving. All these children knew full well that God would take vengeance for sin, either by fire or by water; wherefore they writ their science that they had found in two pillars of stone that they might be found after Noahs flood. ‘That one stone was marble for that would not bum by fire. The other stone was clepped laterns, and that would not drown in water.’ Lamech and his family came from tainted stock. He was the fifth in decent from Cain, the fratricide, and it may well be that all the descendents of the first murderer seemed to feel that they too bore the brand. It is a law as old as the world that the sins of the fathers are visited on the children to the third and fourth generation. Cain's posterity is not referred to after Lamech, and the


probability is that he and his family perished in the Flood. Both Jubal and Tubal Cain are credited in the Masonic Legend with some prescience of what was to occur, and should not be lost to the human race. It is a great feat in etymology to have discovered that the name of our hero means worldly possessions. There are two Hebrew words Tebel and Kainan - whose separate and conjoined signification might not be very far from that with which Freemasons are familiar; but it is quite gratuitous to connect either of these words with Tubal Cain. Whilst in all probability his researches into metallurgy were induced by the necessity of providing himself with efficient weapons of offense and defence, we must not loose sight of the alternate suggestion that metal tools were absolutely essential to the operations of the stone worker, and Freemasons would be ungrateful if they lost sight of the fact that to Tubal Cain they owed most of their working tools. Lamech has to be complimented on his gifted family. They were apparently the first persons in history to turn their hands to anything useful at all. We must not suppose that Tubal Cain confined himself to the manufacture of Tools and Weapons. His accomplishments would extend to the manufacture of beautiful forms and the arts of chasing and engraving. The science of metallurgy has advanced with such strides since the inventions of Siemans and Bessemer that one is apt to forget that the cradle of the world's steel industry was at Damascus.

richness with which the sword hilts were engraved was due to a process even yet called 'Damascening'. The trade was taken away from Damascus by Tamerlane who deported the workmen en bloc and established them at Samarcand. Some have attempted to connect the invention of Tubal Cain with the fact that such altars as were erected to Jehovah were always built, by command, of unhewn stone, the suggestion being that he came of such an impious race that nothing even remotely derived from any of its representatives could be used for sacred purposes. Whilst not going so far as this, still it is significant that no tool of Metal found its way into the Temple precincts, and that the Hebrews themselves were so ignorant of the use and manufacture of tools that the employment of heathen workmen was necessitated. And coming as he does from the land of darkness, the candidate for Freemasonry is not allowed to bring his own metal implements with him, nor, in fact, metal of any kind, fearing, possibly, the ancestral taint. Indeed the candidate makes his first acquaintance with such things by the good pleasure and through the medium of the Worshipful Master. This is our Regular feature of articles under the title, “Reflections.� Articles from all around the world from a variety of Constitutions and authors and adapted to use in SRA76. This article was written in January 1942 by H.T. Richardson.

In this most ancient of cities, tradition has it that Tubal Cain established a guild of armourers whose products soon became famous in every direction. A 'Damascus' blade was a proverbial expression, and the 24


Wisdom The three pillars that support a Masonic lodge are wisdom, strength and beauty. This is, of course, metaphorical, but it is quite a coincidence that the English name for the Deity is comprised of the initials of the Hebrew words for wisdom, strength and beauty: Gomer; Oz and Dabar. For the present we will concentrate on "wisdom". There are many references to it, but no adequate explanation seems forthcoming. The 12th chapter of the book ox Job, verses 12 and 13 tell us that "with the ancient is wisdom; and in length of days understanding. With him is wisdom and strength, he hath counsel and understanding". Verses 30-32 in the First book of Kings, state that "Solomon's wisdom excelled the wisdom of all the children of the east country and all the wisdom of Egypt. For he was wiser than all men ---- and his fame was in all the nations round about". Part of verse 10 in Psalm 111 is "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: ----". In St. Augustine's writings there is "patience is the companion of wisdom". Montaigne, in his essays, says "You can be erudite with the knowledge of others; you can be wise only with your own wisdom". In Pericles' funeral oration given in Athens about 430 B.C. there is the passage "Ours is a simple love of beauty and a manly love of wisdom". The word "wisdom" is used quite freely in these, and many more examples. But what is wisdom? And where does one find it? We would suggest that it can be found in 25

masonry, because masonry is a sanctuary, a place to breathe, a place to think quietly, and a place to grow wise. It is clear that "wisdom" is not a thing of itself, but rather a use of other means and materials gathered over a lifetime. Wisdom is using the resources of knowledge, of experience and of good judgment; it is, therefore, the action, the proper use of the tools of the mind, brain and soul. The desire to learn is the beginning of wisdom and so it is very significant that we speak of becoming wise,, for wisdom is a creative energy, and its fruits are temperance, fortitude, prudence and justice. The human heart is like a bottomless well; it is always thirsty and searching for the quietude that comes only after the heat and turmoil of living have been overcome. It is certain that the key to civilisation is not technology, but the wisdom that comes from ample leisure. The technocrat proclaims that he can run our lives much more efficiently than we can. It is time to assert our right to be inefficient in the face of this dreadful doctrine. If we are to be intolerant, for instance, we must know and understand what it is we are intolerant of. As it is humanly impossible to know all the facts, to count the sand of the sea, or the drops of rain, it becomes the task of wisdom, therefore, to recognise our limitations and faults. Part of wisdom is knowing when one cannot be wise. One cannot think, much less develop new ideas, unless one has units of comparison, and wisdom provides the experience and right judgement for this. Intelligence all by itself is useless, but added to energy and willingness it becomes formidable; combined with knowledge it has no limits. In a nutshell it is that know-


how can be learned by hard work on the job: know why is headwork. It is apparent that wisdom is a lonely personal affair and is similar to the loneliness of the leader, for one has stepped beyond the limits of other men and stands apart. Masonry can provide a path to wisdom, along which one meets the happy companionship, the. friendliness, the morality and the spiritual values that finally blossom into wisdom. A learned man cannot take you into the sphere of his own wisdom, but can only propel you along the path and leave you at the door to your own wisdom. Many of us remain outside that door, but those who enter are blessed with abundance. In wisdom there is an intelligent, lucid and holy spirit; wisdom is know-ledge, but not knowledge for its own sake, but knowledge which helps to widen the horizon and deepen the communication between man and man. Masonry may be termed a progressive science but it is also a reflective science, a place to think, to become human, to consider your fellow many nor as an integer, but as flesh and blood, and, above all, as a stepping-stone to wisdom. Perhaps it is asking too much of masons to urge perfection, but remember that he who aims at perfection and fails, has come closer to it than you or I.

Article by Ed Halpaus, Grand Lodge Education Officer, Grand Lodge of A. F. & A. M. of Minnesota

DID YOU KNOW? Question: If the third degree is supposed to be the highest in Masonry, why was it left incomplete when originating the ritual, thereby giving rise to other branches, such as the Scottish Rite and Royal Arch, which purport to find the genuine secrets? Answer: This question raises a number of difficult problems on the evolution of Craft and Royal Arch ritual. I will try to explain as simply as possible but I must begin with an essential sketch of the background. Our Craft ritual was not 'originated' as a job of work done at one time by a Committee of Ritualists, as the question seems to imply. It developed, very slowly, during a period of 600 years or more. In the 1400s, there was, almost certainly only one degree, or ceremony of admission into the Craft. In the early or mid-1500s, there were two degrees; the first for the Entered Apprentice, the second for the 'Master or Fellow-craft'. From 1696 until c.1725, we can prove that the second degree (for 'Master or F.C.') contained the F.P.O.F. and a word. The Hiramic Legend was certainly not in the ritual at that time. In 1726 we have hints of several fragments of legends, each of which might have been part of a kind of Hiramic Legend, but these three fragments are all concerned with other Biblical characters, and the name of H.A. does not appear in any of them. From 1725-1726 onwards we have proof of a three degree system in practice, but we do have precise details of the contents of each of them. The system of three degrees had been achieved by a division of the original 26


E.A. degree into two parts, thereby promoting the earlier F.P.O.F. degree from second into third place. When the first Grand Lodge was founded in 1717 it did not attempt any ritual control and, in 1723, when its first Book of Constitutions was published, reg. XIII shows that it recognized only the twodegree system, E.A., and 'Master or FellowCraft'. It must be emphasized that there was no 'standard' ritual and no governing body controlling the ritual. The Lodges simply worked what they had inherited from operative times, modified from time to time mainly by 'contagion', i.e. by adopting words and procedures that they had observed in a neighbouring Lodge, or introduced by one of their own men. In 1730, Samuel Pritchard published his Masonry Dissected, the first exposure claiming to depict a system of three degrees. It contained useful information on the E.A., and F.C., plus 'The Master's Degree' containing the first ever version of the Hiramic Legend, all in the form of Question and Answer. Two important items are missing from Prichard's version. Hiram, King of Tyre, is not mentioned at all: and when H.A. is threatened by the ruffians, there is no hint that he cannot divulge the secret 'without the consent and co-operation of the other two'. Those words came into use at a later date, as a direct link with Royal Arch ceremony that did not exist in Prichard's day. After the murder, Prichard tells how the searchers agreed that 'if they did not find the Word in him or about him, the first Word would be the Masters Word‌' and the text shows that a substitute word was adopted. There is never the slightest hint that the ceremony is incomplete. Indeed the 27

catechism seems completeness.

to

emphasize

its

R(eply): To seek for that which was lost is now found. E(xam.): What was that which was lost and is now found? R(eply): The Master-Mason's word. Prichard's work achieved enormous success. Three separate editions and one printed version appeared in pamphlet form and there were also two newspaper versions, all within fourteen days! He was roundly commended as an impostor in Grand Lodge, in December 1730, but it is fair to say that, in the absence of any official publications of ritual, Masonry Dissected became a major influence in the stabilization of English ritual. For thirty years it held field against all rival publications. During the 32 year gap 1730 - 1760, when there is no new English evidence of the development of the third degree, our best information comes from France, where the ritual and procedures largely based on Prichard's material, show quite substantial expansion. As in England there were no official French publications of the ritual, and we have to rely on exposures, which started to appear there in 1737. They show the first appearance in print, of Passwords, new signs and the first fully detailed Hiramic Legend, and of beautifully engraved Tracing Boards. Their third degree Boards show a curious coffin design, on which there is a sprig of acacia and the word JEHOVA, always described as the former word of a Master (ancien mot du maitre). In the French legend Solomon sent nine Masters to search for Adoniram (or Hiram) and they did not


attempt to find the Master's word (as in the English legend) because they knew it. They only resolved to adopt a substitute word, out of fear that Adoniram had been forced to divulge it. I have mentioned these items in order to show that the French Legend is much more logical than its English original, and in much better detail. But in spite of this superiority the ceremony is complete in itself; there is no hint of any need for a completion ceremony, whether Royal Arch, or Scottish Rite. (See The Early French exposures, pp.85, 227, 315,417. Publ. By The Q.C. Lodge, London).

So, the answer to your question is that from its first appearance in 1730, the English third degree with its Hiramic legend was complete in itself. The Royal arch did not exist and there was no question about any other degree to fill supposed gaps in the original third. The same applies to the best of the French trigradal exposures, in 1744, 1745, 1747 and 1751. They were also complete in themselves, without the least hint of another degree that might complete the story. Nor is there any shred of evidence in the early English or French documents to indicate that the Royal Arch was ever a part of the original third Degree: it was not.

rather slow and both lodges and brethren were content to stop at the F. C. degree. From c. 1733 onwards we find records of the appearance of Master's Lodges, more or less loosely attached to existing lodges, but usually meeting on Sunday's to confer the third degree (or Master's Part), either on members of their own Lodge or on brethren from other lodges. If we were sure that these degrees were only conferring the third degree they would not be of any special interest. But in 1733 we find the first mention, in a list of lodges, of a 'Scotch Masons Lodge' meeting at the Devil Tavern, Temple Bar, in London. We do not know what degrees they were working; but in the minutes of the Bear Lodge at Bath, for 1735, is a record when."‌our following worthy Brothers were made and admitted Scots Master Masons". In June 1740 at the Lodge of Antiquity, London, 'the following (nine) members of this lodge ‌were this evening made Scotch Master Masons'. Several if not all of them, in both lodges, were already Master Masons. It is clear that the Scots or Scotch Masters were taking a degree beyond the M.M. but we cannot be sure what it was.

How did the Royal Arch arise? Who did the necessary piece of 'ritual tailoring' that linked the new Royal Arch with the original third degree?

Some of these Masters' Lodges were conferring a degree called 'Pass'd Master'. This may have been an early version of what later became a brief Chair degree, specially designed as a preliminary qualification for admission into the Royal Arch. But in England we have no early details of the contents of the Scots Master degree. Those details make their first appearance in France, very gradually, during a period of seven years or more.

We return first to England in the 1730s where the adoption of the third degree was

In 1737 the Chevalier Andrew Michael Ramsay delivered an oration on the

My answer should have ended at this point, but another question arises from the foregoing, a question so important that I hesitate to abandon the story in mid air. The question is:

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religious moral and historical background of the Craft and its supposed development by the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem and the Crusaders. The oration was later modified for delivery to the French Grand Lodge, but the section which is summarized here appeared in both versions. (Both versions are reproduced in English translation in A.Q.C. 81, pp. 298-304).

Ramsay described how King Solomon compiled 'the statutes, maxims and mysteries of the order' in a book written in hieroglyphics. Cyrus, 'who had been initiated into all our mysteries, appointed Zerubbabel as Grand Master of the Lodge at Jerusalem‌to lay the foundations of the Second Temple, where the mysterious book‌was deposited', etc. Ramsey did not mention the Scots Masters' degree, but in the course of his oration he managed to make 'Noah, Abraham, the Patriarchs, Moses, Solomon and Cyrus‌the early Grand Masters' according to 'our ancient traditions', adding 'here now is our true history'. That section is mercifully short and historically worthless. Indeed Ramsay's oration only has a place in these notes because he was apparently the first writer to hint at the story of Cyrus, Zerubbabel and the building of the Second Temple within a Masonic context. From 1744 onwards, the French exposures begin to speak of another degree beyond the three Craft degrees: it is called Maitres Ecossais (i.e.Scots Masters) and it is said to deal with the rebuilding of the Temple, under Zerubbalel, when 'the masons worked with trowel in hand, and sword and buckler at their side'. It seems probable that the Maitres Ecossais were practicing an early version of the Royal Arch, but none of the texts describe the actual ceremony and the 29

few which claim to give some of the secret words and signs are sheer nonsense. But most important of all from the questioners point of view, is that none of these texts indicated any kind of connection with the third degree. The Ecossais was a separate degree on an entirely different theme. The artificial link with the third degree was still to come. The actual beginning of the Royal Arch as a degree, or ceremony, are not certain. It may have been among the 'Scots Masters' in England or in France. It was certainly known in Ireland in c. 1744, and was being conferred in England from 1752 onwards, in Lodges under the Antients Grand Lodge. The earliest documents on Royal Arch ritual date back to the 1760s and it is evident that there were substantial local variations. Today, the ceremony in its English form, standardized in 1834-35, consists of three main themes: 1. The Israelites' return from Babylon and the rebuilding of the Temple; all this is pure Biblical history. 2. The legend of the vault and the discovery if the sacred scroll, alter and word. This legend goes back to the early fathers of the Christian Church. In A.D. 400, Philostorgius gave a recognizable account of the vault legend and a greatly enlarged version was compiled by Nicephorus Callistus in the 14th century. 3. The esoteric section and the mode of communication. It is perhaps necessary to emphasize that, in its early years, the Royal Arch was deemed to be a ceremony complete in itself, a fourth degree, with completely different personnel and dealing with different incidents. It did not claim to reveal anything that was missing or incomplete in the third degree


and it had no actual or implicit link in the third dregree. The first trace of that link (described above as a piece of 'ritual tailoring') appeared in Three Distinct Knocks, 1760, an exposure which claimed to describe the Craft Ritual of the 'Antients'. This was the first exposure to appear in England at the end of the thirty year gap and its third degree contained much new and interesting material. It gave names of the three assassins and its story of their attack contained details that had never appeared before (shown here in italics): So Hiram came to the East Door, and Jubela demanded the Master's Word: He told him he did not receive it in such a manner; but he must wait, and Time and a little Patience would bring him to it, for it was not in his Power to deliver it alone, except Three together, viz. Solomon, King of Israel; Hiram, King of Tyre, and Hiram Abif. Later, when Solomon sent '12 Crafts to raise their Master Hiram', he told them 'there were but Three in the World that knew it, and it can never be delivered without we Three are together; but now One is dead, therefore it is lost! It was the addition of these words to the then 'standard' version of the Hiramic legend that created the link between the third degree and the Royal Arch. The esoteric discoveries that were made in the vault acquired a special importance because they included the so-called 'lost word' of the legend of H.A. It is doubtful if that one item was the central theme of the Royal Arch in its earliest form. If that were so, there would have been no need for the vast amount of esoteric material that was added, before the English ceremony was standardized in 1834-35. As I see it, the Royal Arch was a separate degree, originally designed for

brethren who had passed the Chair in the Craft Lodge. It was cleverly linked with the third degree by the manner in which it dealt with the so-called 'lost word'. (For a fuller study, see "The Relationship between the Craft & the Royal Arch" by H. Carr, ACQ vol.86, pp35-86). The Questions and answers from ‘Did you Know’ were collected from various constitutions across the world, and in no way reflect the views or thoughts of the editor and or his Lodge or Mother Constitution.

Question: What is an Emblem? And is there a difference between an Emblem and a Symbol? Answer. An Emblem is a representation of something unknown or concealed by a sign or a thing that is known. For instance the Square in Freemasonry is an Emblem of morality, the Plumb Rule an Emblem for uprightness of conduct, and the Level an Emblem for Equality. Although the words Emblem and Symbol are many times used synonymously, the words don’t express exactly the same meaning. A Symbol is more extensive in it’s application, it includes every representation of an idea by an image. So what makes something a Symbol? They are Symbols because they stand for something else or remind us of something. For instance the Octagon shape of a stop sign is a Symbol we all recognize. The American Flag is a Symbol of the United States of America. So Symbols are kind of like a quick way to remind us of something. We could say that while all Emblems are Symbols, all Symbols are not Emblems. This Question and answer is from Bro. Ed Haulpus – Masonic Matters.

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THE BACK PAGE Quality V’s Quantity According to a Craft Directory, we have a lot of members, but, judging by lodge attendance records, we have too few Masons. A lodge with a membership of 450 is lucky to have 60 to 70 members in attendance on a regular basis, whereas a lodge having 75 members will have 25 to 30 members in regular attendance. This is not necessarily true in all cases, but attendance in smaller country lodges, per capita, is better than larger city lodges. To what do we attribute this fact? We have members in good standing who have never been in lodge in over ten years. W. Bro. Harry Carr, of the Quatuor Coronati Lodge No.2076, E.R., repeatedly stated, "We should be stressing "Quality" rather than "Quantity" in our selection of potential Masons." Today, because of economic pressure, inflation devaluation, depression, and numerous distractions, it would appear that our "standards" have been somewhat too flexible. Even so, it is obvious that many men are still interested in petitioning and we jump at the chance to have them; thinking of the essential revenue. Every fraternal body has an annual benevolence "fund raising" objective. In addition, rents, per capita tax, postage, stationery, food costs continue to rise, therefore, if there are not commensurate increases in dues, where are the essential funds to come from? The easiest and surest way of obtaining extra funds is through an increase in membership and this is one reason for having many members with only a relatively few truthfully having the quality required for Masonry. I submit that a lodge is no place for bartering and yet one can hardly attend any lodge today without being pestered to death by members trying to sell tickets as "fund raisers" for many other fraternal bodies and outside interests. While it is true that potential well-qualified men may readily be willing to become a member of a, Masonic Lodge, they may not be readily willing to be subjected to the Masonic way of life, ritual and obligations. In this day of solid-state, semi-conductors, electrochips and automation our way of life is changing too fast. Man is having a hard time to keep up with it. Just as we witness in everyday-life cases of "Greed" vs "Need." we see in lodge membership. "Quantity" vs "Quality." Masonry is basically the same today as it was centuries ago. The difference is that man is not quite the same and this is largely due to the vast array of other interests available. The sheer number of choices of what to join is innumerable. This appears to relate to a pessimism and fatalism that is tragically wide-spread among many men. A candidate who has been raised to the sublime degree of a Master Mason has committed himself to certain pledges. What does Masonry pledge to you? Nothing, absolutely nothing, but the "Light of Masonry" is always available, ready and willing to support you with the practice of its principles and tenets which when observed will reward you in your everyday lives.

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Until next month, Keep the faith! The Editor

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SRA76 MARCH 2020 MASONIC MAGAZINE  

The Monthly Masonic Magazine of Lodge Stirling Royal Arch No. 76.

SRA76 MARCH 2020 MASONIC MAGAZINE  

The Monthly Masonic Magazine of Lodge Stirling Royal Arch No. 76.

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