Author unknown: Published in THE TRACING BOARD: GRS; July, 1969.
Masonry has a great tradition, but it is not enough to sit complacently in contemplation of that fact. Whatever has had merit in the past and can be made applicable to present day condition is, of course, desirable to be preserved and utilized.
However, if Masonry, of the present, is to keep abreast of the best in its past, then its membership must be selected with due regard to having the type of members who will be a credit to the fraternity. This means that quality of membership must be regarded as of far more importance than mere quantity of members.
Masonry’s doors are open to the good and the true, but no one is ever asked to join. Each one who desires to become a member must seek membership of his own volition. But once admitted to membership, it rests upon each of the older members to make the new members feel what Masonry stands for, and to make him feel that he is among friends and not merely one more stone in a vast building.
Masonry is vibrant with all that is fine and uplifting in life, and each new member must be made to feel that the atmosphere of Masonry and the lodge to which he has recently been admitted contains the ozone of health and moral uplift.
A mistaken but prevalent idea in some circles today is that membership in a Masonic lodge completes the necessary qualifications of a Mason – a conception of Freemasonry totally out of harmony with the fact.
Membership in a Freemason’s lodge no more makes a man a Mason than membership in a musical club makes him a musician. The character of a man and a Mason is determined not by any society of which he is a member, and of which he may be a member in name only; but rather by the ideals controlling his life, the affection ruling his heart, and the voluntary thoughts which guide his conduct.
We meet with several types of men in this great fraternity, such as those who are Masons in name only; those who are Masons by nature, and those who are Masons both in name and in nature. The last named class is large and influential and, happily, they are the predominating class.
Every sincere Mason will ever have before him that striking symbol – a point within a circle – one of the most arresting symbols reiterated and emphasized every time Master Masons enter on the sublime degree of a Master Mason. That point symbolizes every individual brother; and the circle, the boundary line of his duty toward God and man, beyond which he should never suffer his passions, interests or prejudices to betray him. The circumference of this circle – the boundary line of his duty – is clearly Freemasonry.
Masonry is not a religion, nor is it a substitute for religion. Its teachings contain profound religious truths, and the fraternity is composed of millions of religious men. But Masonry has no doctrinal creed; it has no system of theology; it does not seek converts. We must be convinced, however, that a Mason who understands and practices his obligations will find his loyalty to his church strengthened and his fidelity to his creed deepened.
The genius of Masonry is that it has lived as an influence for good for many many years, because it represents a method of living that is based on those principles of truth and right that will abide forever.
Although we may be discouraged by happenings of our times, we should never abandon our faith in the eternal truth that the promises of the Great Architect of the Universe.
This short article was written almost 60 Years ago, however, the sentiments and opinions expressed. apply equally today as they did in 1969.
Freemasonry continues to be the largest Fraternal body in the World and attracts men who truly believe that Brotherly Love; Relief and Truth are standards to live by.
Invitations are NEVER extended.
Membership must be sought and be of the seekers own choice and opinion!!!!
Have a Wonderful Day & God Bless