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The Future of the Fraternity
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Post The Future of the Fraternity 
I think you may be right that the mantra "Making Good Men Better" might be a bit too broad and uninspiring within today's society. Perhaps we should focus on our demonstrated track record in an area badly needed in the world today: tolerance. Our lodges have, for some 300 years now, provided a place for God-fearing men of every religious and political persuasion to meet together "on the level" as equals and brothers. Can anyone name another organization on the face of the earth where this is not only permitted, but required? Imagine, if you will, a Masonic Middle East where Arab and Israeli, Mulsim, Christian and Jew could meet together and become friends and brothers! This, I believe, is what we should stress since not only did we come up with the idea (of religious freedom and tolerance) -- we've LIVED it for almost 300 years!

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Post Vision for the future 
I wonder whether we have really understood the essence of Masonry.

What is the work of the lodge when all the brethren are well experienced MM?

Surely the work is not just seeking more candidates?

Unless we know the proper work of a lodge open in the 3rd degree with no candidate then I suggest we are unlikely to attract and hold the quality candidates.

As for tolerance, I wonder if Arabs enjoy rituals based on the jewish OT.

Equally, how many brethren feel uncomfortable about the exclusion of women from the Mysteries when there is any amount of evidence that 2000 years ago both sexes participated in the Mysteries.

So I wonder if we have the preconditions for the survival of Masonry in its current form

Best wishes

Russell Holland

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Post RE: Tolerance 
Well, I have seen Arab - Americans go through our degrees and serve as officers in some of our lodges. As to women, I'm not so sure about the validity of "evidence" that they were practicing members of our Craft 2000 (or whatever) years ago. Remember, the emergence of women in secular societal situations is (historically speaking) in its infancy.

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Post Re: RE: Tolerance 
cecole wrote:
Remember, the emergence of women in secular societal situations is (historically speaking) in its infancy.


Cecole

You are braver than I am. Many of the women I know would get quite agitated if that were said seriously in their hearing.

For example, in ancient egypt it was common for a woman to reign equally with a man as co-regent. And I seem to recall ancient greek and roman society had quite extensive public roles for women of nobility.

Perhaps the equality gets greater as we go further back.

But that is really a distraction from my proposition that Masonry lacks the preconditions so far for wide spread survival.

Cheers

Russell

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Post The Future of the Fraternity 
When jou talk about the future of the FM the:
1 the first FM where de´sts. In our time wil it be??
2 the woman is in out time a human like the man and not a under kind like the apes.
3 The times are differend of 1700. The problems are simular. The cutlure shift from agriculture to industrial culture then and industrial to ICT now.
4 We have to talk about our community out culture and our falues. And the FM is the old place to do that. Without the force of a religion or politik. Just our own consius,
The way to do that can be differand, but accept the other in his differances
stop with roconished and so on That is not productif. A Lodge is a authonome unit and the GO or GL is just a Guild where we talking about problems like buildings and so on. But, just like the old guilds, is every Lodge like a shop with several human workers. They make the style of the products a.s.o
Br regards
Bob Bakker
Rolling Eyes


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Post Re: Vision for the future 
[holland]I wonder whether we have really understood the essence of Masonry.

I, too, have wondered about this very thing and, judging from what I have read on various Masonic sites, I tend to think it is *not* really understood that well. (I'd be interested in finding out what others think the 'essence of Masonry' is.)

[holland]What is the work of the lodge when all the brethren are well experienced MM?

What is a 'well experienced MM'? Is it one who has held position in a Lodge? Is it one who can quote any section of the Ritual at the drop of a hat? And without 'error'? Or is it one who is not interested in being WM but rather will show up every meeting to work in the kitchen in order to serve the members refreshment after the meeting?

[holland]Surely the work is not just seeking more candidates?

IMHO, definitely not.

[holland]Unless we know the proper work of a lodge open in the 3rd degree with no candidate then I suggest we are unlikely to attract and hold the quality candidates.

[hollanf]As for tolerance, I wonder if Arabs enjoy rituals based on the jewish OT.

As difficult as it may be, I seem to think some must...or we would not have any. And, of course, there are Arabs of both the Jewish and Christian faiths. (Admittedly, they are in the minority.)

[holland]Equally, how many brethren feel uncomfortable about the exclusion of women from [holland]the Mysteries when there is any amount of evidence that 2000 years ago both sexes [holland]participated in the Mysteries.

One does not need to go back 2000-plus years for such evidence but, rather, only to 1459AD and the Constitutions of the Masons of Strasburg. (A copy of which can be found on PS, btw.)

[holland]So I wonder if we have the preconditions for the survival of Masonry in its current [holland]form.

Methinks not, my Brother, methinks not! But, then, is its 'current form' really Masonry? And would such a loss be really such a dreadful thought? Perhaps some changes *are* needed but who will make them?

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>is its 'current form' really Masonry? And would such a loss be really such a dreadful thought? Perhaps some changes *are* needed but who will make them?

It may well be that Masonry as we practice it is much damaged by passing through the hands of various groups including ancient egyptians, ancient hebrews, mystery temples, merovingians, templars, bloodline lodges, and even perhaps some craft guilds.

Each of those has put their own agendas in the rituals and practices to the point that that original formulae are obscured. And practical metaphysical science has degenerated to speculation and moralising upon Masonic symbols.

My perspective is that we need:

- new forms not based on the religious writings of a small nationalistic groups (the English modifications of Hebrew traditional writings)
- equality of sex and colour
- replacement of Old Testament images of God the Builder with God the Steward (of the Earth) to draw in the new Masons who currently group under the banners of planetary stewardship and environmentalism
- rituals that clarify the relationships of the inner and outer worlds
- direct teaching of practical metaphysics to those worthy


I have had some insight into how this might work

Cheers

Russell Holland

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[deeaton]>is its 'current form' really Masonry? And would such a loss be really such a dreadful thought? Perhaps some changes *are* needed but who will make them?

[holland]It may well be that Masonry as we practice it is much damaged by passing through [holland]the hands of various groups including ancient egyptians, ancient hebrews, mystery [holland]temples, merovingians, templars, bloodline lodges, and even perhaps some craft [holland]guilds.

And while this may be a sad situation, it is to be expected. An easy example of how this can happen is, while on refreshment, to have all form a line by rank with the members between the JD and the Tyler. When ready have the WM whisper something to the SW who will repeat it to the JW and on down the line. When the Tyler receives the oral text and repeats it to the WM who will compare it to the written version chances are it may be similar to the original but will the essence be the same? (In some cases that I've seen, the return message was completely different than the original message...obviously, the essence was also changed.)

Our 'job' is to make sure that there are no unintended changes creeping in. And, unfortunately, word of mouth won't guarantee this.

[holland]Each of those has put their own agendas in the rituals and practices to the point that [holland]that original formulae are obscured. And practical metaphysical science has [holland]degenerated to speculation and moralising upon Masonic symbols.


And sometimes it was delibrately done.

[holland]My perspective is that we need:

[holland]- new forms not based on the religious writings of a small nationalistic groups (the [holland]English modifications of Hebrew traditional writings)

Not to mention the 'new' meanings given to 'old' words or the discontinuance of 'old' words and phrases.

[holland]- equality of sex and colour

How would you suggest this be accomplished? Would recognition be enough?

[holland]- replacement of Old Testament images of God the Builder with God the Steward (of [holland]the Earth) to draw in the new Masons who currently group under the banners of [holland]planetary stewardship and environmentalism

This will take some time to ponder upon as I see G-d as both 'the Builder' *and* 'the Steward'.

[holland]- rituals that clarify the relationships of the inner and outer worlds
[holland]- direct teaching of practical metaphysics to those worthy

Won't the first do away with the 'veils' and, thus, make the second unnecessary?

[holland]I have had some insight into how this might work

I'd be happy to hear of them, if you have the time. And while I've directed my comments to you specifically, I am open for anyone to enter into the discussion. I think that we share the same ideas; it's just a matter of talking them out in order to better the Craft. For example, one of my Grand Lodges has admitted 'men of color' for as long as it has been around. So to us, there was equality 'of colour' all along. (We have also recognised PHA to some degree. But the question had nothing to do with 'colour' but rather 'legitimacy' among other things.)

F&S Regards,
Dave Eaton

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Dave

After 20 years of looking I have been shown some outline of a post-UGLE Masonry. I have put it up in a few forums and it has gone across like a lead balloon. I suspect this is because most readers lack training in inner work so stick to moralising and speculation.

So here is what I saw:


The lodge room is probably circular at least in the arrangement of the brethren.

In the East is the officer representing the human race - convening the lodge. The human is the meeting point of many energies hence a lodge in him or herself.

The anchor point is in the West where the officer represents the angelic kingdom. In order to be an effective representative, that officer has to be initiated into the angelic kingdom through a side degree for that purpose. (This is foreshadowed in the Co-Masonic initiation in which the candidate is introduced to the elemental groups and the Wardens of their "gates") The choice of officer is not trivial either, being generally filled by a brother/sister with close incarnational connections to the angelic (greater devic) kingdom.

The use of sound especially song is critical in the relationship between the Master and the WSW. (I am not sure if the existing titles remain but the old ones are convenient for this exposition)

In the South is the officer representing the Nature Spirits of Earth and Water. The officer in the North (hidden entry to the higher temple) represents the nature spirits of Air and Fire. Again with their own initiations - have to be real initiations conducted with the Nature Spirits themselves - and again the choice of officers is not trivial.

The Senior Deacon is the messenger from the Temple in the Heavens (actually the lodge in the solar system) and has the role of "tuning" the brethren who are to anchor the 7 Spirits before the Throne of God (7 Masons who make a lodge perfect). The SD therefore has a more extensive and chanting role - somewhat parallel to the role of the thurifer in the Co-Masonic opening ritual. The choice of the brethren to anchor each of the 7 Masons is likely not to be directly related to formal positions but related to ability to resonate. This may result in brethren in the columns being chosen early in the ritual for those tasks. This may take the form of particular brethren being censed (with a thurible) with the particular swings and sounds from the SD indicating the particular role for the ceremony. This of course requires that the SD knows who the 7 Masons prefer. (The SD may well consult with senior brethren in advance of the opening and indeed forewarn the relevant brethren)

The Junior Deacon has a similar role with respect to the Lords of Karma (Lords of the Planes) and following the SD will designate those brethren to facilitate the entry of the Lords of the Planes. The designation process is likely to be based upon the plane. For example for the Lord of the Physical Plane I expect that a physical contact will be used, while for the astral plane a sound and for the mental plane a sound associated with a distinct connection between the 3rd eye of the JD and the designated brother. For the purposes of human degrees only 5 Lords/planes will be used.

Again, the JD must have a profound initiation to the lords of karma to perform this role.


Now the position of IPM is interesting as it is a stellar role and directly represents The Widow and her Lodge as custodians of the education processes of humans and related species. The IPM specifically is expected to obtain the patterns for the unfoldment of the group entity of the lodge and for the candidates when the lodge is working in the human degrees. These patterns are transferred to the candidate as the Master magnetises the candidate with the Master's rod. This parallels the use of a sword in initiation in Co-Masonic workings.

The basic work of the lodge working in the human degrees is to raise the brethren (male and female) to a consciousness of and a competence in a series of five-fold relationships (points of fellowship). The first of these is elemental, the second is brotherhood of kingdoms within creation, and the third is the brotherhood within the solar systemic temple.

This of course prepares the human brother to be a steward of the Earth, balancing kingdoms and stimulating their unfoldment.

There are at least 2 five-fold geometries in the arrangement of officers in the earthly temple. The presence of a sevenfold geometry is concealed until the 3rd degree.


The rituals for the installation of specific officers I will leave undescribed at present but they are carried out in the lodge opened in solar systemic form not in human form.


Dave, I would be interested in your comments and particularly any testing you might be able to do of the energetics of the structure proposed.

I see the proposal as being largely an unfolding of existing ritual.

Cheers

Russell Holland

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>Dave
>
>After 20 years of looking I have been shown some outline of a post-UGLE Masonry. I have >put it up in a few forums and it has gone across like a lead balloon. I suspect this is >because most readers lack training in inner work so stick to moralising and speculation.
>
>So here is what I saw:

<Snipped for the sake of bandwidth only>

Does the phrase 'deja vu' ring a bell with you? Only in my case it's been more like 40-plus years ago.

>Dave, I would be interested in your comments and particularly any testing you might be >able to do of the energetics of the structure proposed.

In my younger days I had done a tremendous amount of study in the esoteric/metaphysical aspects of Life. Due to situations that I had no control over (or so I thought at the time), I had to lay aside my research for a period of time. When I joined Freemasonry, I somewhat had regained control. Alas, it was short lived. However, I had enough time to find that Freemasonry (as practiced in the Lodges I had joined and/or visited) spent no time 'explaining' the Rituals. (Plural because the Lodges I've visited or joined where in different Grand Jurisdictions and thus where different albeit understandable.) I'm at that point in Life where I'm striving to regain those 'lost years' but I'm afraid that this will require me to start afresh. (I don't know how relevant a 40 year old degree is in today's world but I do know that I've 'forgotten' much that I learned back then through lack of application/use.) I'm afraid any testing I might be able to offer would have to wait until I've re-tuned myself. And this is why I'm trying to find a more compatible Lodge. One that gives more than just 'talk the tlak' to Freemasonry. One that has real Masonic Education, as it where. (Or, to be more blunt, one that delves into the esoteric side of Masonry.)

>I see the proposal as being largely an unfolding of existing ritual.

To be sure! *But* it is also one in which, I think, we would have to convince a Grand Lodge to grant a dispensation to allow such a Lodge to be started with a small group of like-minded (does that sound familiar <VBG>) individuals *and* to allow said Lodge to grow (and possibly create daughter Lodges). Convincing a Grand Lodge to do such a thing, at this point in time, would be harder to do than the unfolding of existing ritual. (However, I know of several 'like-minded' Masons who are 'moving up' and this may possibly come about in the not to distant future.)

As a side note, of sorts, I generally believe 'the more the better' but in the case of Lodge membership, I hold the opposite view. That is to say, I don't feel a Lodge should have more than 50 members. I believe that when it starts to reach that number then it should 'spin off' a daughter Lodge. This, of course, will give you more Lodges but more importantly it will give you more active members as well as more (by default) individual Masonic Education. (A well known fact; the smaller the class, the better the education.)

If you wish to take this to the back channel, let me know. I have no problem with that as we seem to be the only ones discussing this topic.

F&S Regards,
Dave...

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