There is no singular definition of Freemasonry. Freemasonry is many different things to each man who joins the fraternity. For some it is a place to make friends and acquaintances. For others it is a place to engage in introspection or discuss philosophy. And, for others it is a place to practice charity and goodwill. Through each of these endeavors—and countless more—Freemasonry seeks to unite good men of all backgrounds and make them better husbands, fathers, and citizens by encouraging and cultivating friendship, morality, and brotherly love.
Freemasonry is the world's oldest and largest non-religious, non-political, fraternal and charitable organization. It teaches self-knowledge through participation in a progression of initiatic rites. Members are expected to be of high moral standing and are encouraged to speak openly about Freemasonry.
Freemasonry is a society of men concerned with moral and spiritual values. Its members are taught its principles (moral lessons and self-knowledge) by a series of ritual dramas—a progression of allegorical "degrees" which are learned by heart and performed within each Lodge— which follow ancient forms, and use stonemasons' customs and tools as allegorical guides.
Freemasonry instills in its members a moral and ethical approach to life: its values are based on integrity, kindness, honesty and fairness. Members are urged to regard the interests of the family as paramount but, importantly, Freemasonry also teaches concern for people, care for the less fortunate, and help for those in need.