On Freemasonry 05.02.2020
"If you want to hide something, hide it right in plain sight."
(c) Endgame by Frey James
Freemasons haven't been hiding from anyone or hiding anything much for a long time. However, it was not always like this. The esoteric Masonic society appeared in the Middle Ages as a challenge to the progressively thinking part of the aristocratic class and the Roman Catholic Church. By the way, things are still difficult between Vatican and Freemasonry, de jure, and any Catholic for membership in the Order can be facing excommunication, but things have long been different de facto.
All that remains secret in Freemasonry is the rule forbidding the disclosure of the personalities of those who belong to the Order and what goes on in the Lodge. The first rule about members is an anachronism and is observed more because of some showing off in the former USSR and somewhere in Europe. But the vast majority of Masonic lodges have their websites, pages on Instagram and Facebook, where all data (sometimes even the phone number and address) of their members or the leadership's data is posted. So if you see a "Freemason" somewhere who will start confusing matters about the Order, this person is just pretentious even if he is indeed a Freemason. This also applies to "199th degree Freemasons", as well as all kinds of "Templars" and "Rosicrucian" from "ancient and mystic orders". I have nothing against this kind of "occult mystical" people, but they have nothing to do with real Freemasonry.
There are only three degrees in Freemasonry. The first one is an Entered Apprentice. The second one is a Fellowcraft. And the third one is a Master Mason. In North America now, that's usually where things stop. In Europe, there are additional degrees, like in the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry. There are 33 of them. As a rule, those who got the 33rd degree are part of the Areopagus, which administers some global Masonic structure such as the Grand Orient de France. There is another "occult-mystical" rite called the Ancient and Primitive Rite of Memphis-Misraïm, and there are 99 degrees. Albert Pike, one of the most respected Freemason masters in the world, wrote in his time about the complete meaninglessness of such some degrees. However, the rite is still considered Masonic. It adds "ground for research" to all kinds of conspiracy-mongers and other world conspiracy seekers as well as authors of "highly intellectual works", for example, "How Evil Freemasons Destroy Russia".
There is also another critical point. Freemasonry is considered a global organisation, but it is heterogeneous. That is, there is no single centre of control of Freemasonry. As a rule, the lodges are united into one Grand Lodge. This is characteristic of regular Freemasonry and lodges affiliated with the United Grand Lodge of England. Prince Edward, Duke of Kent, is the head of the United Grand Lodge of England, hereditary within the Windsor family. But the lodges in regular Freemasonry and virtually any other lodge operate independently of each other. There is also Liberal Freemasonry, represented by a multitude of organisations. The Grand Orient de France, the Grand Orient de Canaan, and the Le Droit Humain are the largest. These organisations have an elected "power vertical".
There has been a conflict between regular and liberal Freemasonry since the 19th century. Regular Freemasons do not recognise liberal Freemasons. There has been no such conflict in North America for a long time, but it is very difficult to find a liberal Freemason there, either. No one particularly measures regularity in other parts of the world either, except Russia. In Russia, Andrei Bogdanov, who became Master of the Grand Lodge of Russia with the help of the police, regularly sends out various "greetings" to the Grand Orient de France, whose members in Russia are less than a hundred. The reasons for this "deep brotherly love" are not clear to me.
I also wanted to make a special note about the Freemasons and the secret services. I have often read that the Masonic lodges are run by the FSB, Mossad, CIA, MI6, the French Foreign Security Directorate and other "wonderful" structures. True Freemasonry does not involve any political themes, and there is not and cannot be any global interest of the intelligence services there. Also, real Freemasonry is not a sectarian-type organisation, and it is impossible to force anyone to do anything there. The intelligence services may infiltrate into Freemasonry, and I think they do it to gather general information on what an organisation does. Maybe there are even whole lodges controlled by some secret service. As they say, If you can't beat them, join them (There is even a suspicion on somebody named Andrei :D), but it is wrong to say and write that secret services control all Freemasonry.
And let us talk about Freemasonry in Russia. I believe that Freemasonry in Russia is in a dismal state since the 19th century, and now there is no "light at the end of the tunnel" in light of the general state of affairs in the country. Lodges are created, and Masons join them to learn and grow, share their achievements, and have a good time. A Masonic lodge is a collective of creative like-minded people. There is no middle class and a class of "the enlightened nobles" in Russia who usually can be Freemasons. The wealthy people (officials and thieves of different kinds) and also a majority of impoverished citizens of Russia doesn't care about Freemasonry. Also, a certain "conspiracy halo" has been created around Freemasonry, which also affects the attitude to it. Many people think that Freemasons want to "rule the world", "destroy Russia/USSR/basic of creation", etc. That's why they often join the Freemasons for the sake of "joining the "world behind the scenes", which is certainly not in a Masonic lodge in a basement on some Griboyedov Canal.))) There is no correct understanding of Freemasonry in Russia. The existing lodges are rather hobby clubs than the real Masonic organisation. There is little creativity. I have read (quite interesting) books by several Russian Freemasons, published in a print run of fewer than 1000 copies. This is the "crucial achievement" of the creative genius of Russian Freemasonry. No one will build a new Kazan Cathedral as there are neither people who could do it nor resources.
I want to finish this article by discussing the main secret, the Masonic symbolism. There are a lot of different kinds of symbols in Freemasonry. They played a crucial role in Freemasonry in the Middle Ages and still do in many places nowadays. As a rule, a real Masonic lodge is a bunch of creative and quite famous people. That is why there are a lot of Masonic symbols. It does not mean that there is some kind of conspiracy theory. Often, Masonic symbolism also reflects why it was created. There are "Masonic Rome", "Masonic Paris", "Masonic London", "Masonic Washington" and of course "Masonic Petersburg".You can see all the major Masonic secrets with your own eyes or hear with your ears. You need to look closely or be in the right place at the right time. 🙂
Brother D. ⸫
Tags: Brotherhood | Freemasonry | masons