After the District Meetings: Reaffirming your Masonic Lessons

06.03.2019

After the District Meetings: Reaffirming your Masonic Lessons

Ritual is more than memorizing words, it’s living your life in accordance with the lessons they teach!

The Symbolic Lodge of Freemasonry

1stDegree: Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth. Living your life as a just and upright Mason in everything you do and say!

2ndDegree: Walk uprightly in our several stations before God and man, squaring our actions by the square of virtue, harmonizing our conduct by the principle of morality and virtue, traveling in love on the level of time. Acting by the Plumb to make our passions and prejudices coincide with the line of our duty. (focus always on your words and actions).

3rdDegree: Friendship, Morality and Brother Love. A society of friends and brothers, among whom no contention should ever exist, but that noble contention, or rather emulation of who can best work and best agree.

All three symbolic degrees: Harmony in all we do and say is the true strength and support of our fraternity.

The Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry

4thDegree: The word of a Mason, once given must be sacred. Be faithful to friends, country and Masonry; thus, you will be faithful to yourself. Duties are not to be performed expecting reward but expecting self-satisfaction.

5thDegree: Life is uncertain, and death might call at any moment. Does a life well lived prepare one for death? Cultivate honesty, sincerity and good faith.Get your house in order! Understand the wisdom and duty of making proper provisions for the protection and welfare of your family and dependents. If any of you do not have a will, you should make one.

6thDegree: Be zealous, faithful, disinterested and benevolent. Control your own passions and act the peacemaker! The duty of a Mason is to endeavor to make man think better of his fellowman. Does any Brother entertain ill will or an unsettled quarrel against his Brother? If so, let him now make it known that the promise may be fulfilled and the injury atoned for.

7thDegree: Let the true Mason never forget the solemn injunction, necessary to be observed at almost every moment of a busy life: “judge not, lest ye yourselves be judged: for whatsoever judgement ye measure unto others, the same shall in turn be measured unto you. [Matt. 7:1-2]. Decide justly, impartially; do justice to all men.

8thDegree: A Masonic Lodge should resemble a bee-hive, in which all the members work together with ardor for the common good. Enjoy the blessings of this day, and the evils of it, bear patiently and calmly. Treating all men, especially the laboring man, with equality and dignity.

9thDegree: Most men have sentiments, but not principles. The former are temporary sensations, the latter permanent and controlling impressions of goodness and virtue. They are rules of action, and shape and control our conduct; and it’s these that Masonry insists upon. Strive to destroy ignorance in ourselves.

10thDegree: If Masonry will be true to her mission, and Masons to their promises and obligations...then we may be sure that great results will be attained and a great work done. Toleration [holds] that every other man has the same right to his opinion and faith that we have to ours. Tolerance is important in overcoming fanaticism and blind ambition.

11thDegree: Be earnest, true and reliable. Be the champion of the people. Life is a school. Masonry is work. You are to be true unto all men.

12thDegree: Seek wisdom through knowledge. Are you in control of your life? Let the Mason never forget that life and the world are what we make them by our social character. Seek truth and right.

13thDegree: Moral character is a habit, not formed in a moment. When friends meet, and hands are warmly pressed, there is a religion between their hearts; and each loves and worships the True and Good that is in the other. Be guided and directed by honor and duty.

14thDegree: Serve the common good and be fruitful of all good works. We are bound by our obligations and should be free from prejudice, intolerance and envy. Do not take the name of God in vain!If a Brother has wronged you, have you been willing to forgive him and seek reconciliation?

15thDegree: To rebuild the Masonic Temple of liberty, equality and fraternity in the souls of men and of nations is the duty of all Masons.

16thDegree: Will you leave a noble heritage to those who follow you in this world?

17thDegree: Light will finally overcome darkness, good will conquer evil, and truth will be victor over error.

18thDegree: Faith, Hope and Charity. Remember that it is better to Love than to Hate. Your duty is not to be better than your Brethren, but better than yourselves. The more you have, the more you owe to those who need your assistance. May our words always be kind and gentle.

19thDegree: If lived properly, this life is a bridge to eternal life. Do you live your life so it is a bridge to immortality?

20thDegree:Is your behavior the same both in and out of the lodge? Example is the best teaching method known.

21stDegree: Be steadfast and courageous in the face of adversity. Be humble and modest, trusting in God.

22ndDegree: From first to last, Masonry is work. Resolution to do some good work in our day and generation is purely Masonic. To do that which lies before us to do, is more honorable than rank and title. Portray, not the ordinary virtues of an extraordinary life, but the more extraordinary virtues of an ordinary life.

23rdDegree: Be devoted to the service of God. Simple faith is wiser than vain philosophy.

24thDegree: Initiation is a process to develop in the candidate those human qualities which are part of the Divine. Labor incessantly for the glory of God, the honor of your country and the happiness of your brethren.

25thDegree: Fulfill your destiny and re-create yourself by reformation, repentance and enlarging your knowledge. Evil and Darkness are temporary, Light and Good will be eternal.

26thDegree: Practice mercy (forgiveness). Be tolerant. Be devoted to the true principles of Masonry. No excuse can justify one’s failure to exercise the moral imperatives of a just life.

27thDegree: Be faithful to the promises you made in Masonry. Masonic labor is to learn, and to teach others.

28thDegree: Be devoted to truth, honor, loyalty, justice and humanity. It is nobler to err (for the right reasons) and make amends than never to err at all.

29thDegree: Freemasonry is the continual effort to exalt the nobler nature over the ignoble, the spiritual over the material and the divine in man over the human.

30thDegree: Masonry desires, by teaching its sublime and noble doctrine, to establish in all parts of the world the reign of Freedom, Peace and Toleration. Set your house in order, for your life passes with every breath you draw.

31stDegree: Judge yourself in the same light as you judge others considering both actions and motives. Always treat your opponents as if their opinion were at some time to become your own. Scrutinize your own words and acts, weigh them carefully, and so becoming conscious of your own faults, endeavor to avoid them for the future.

32ndDegree: A Soldier of Scottish Rite Masonry is zealous and ardent in the performance of his duties to God, his country, his family, his brethren and himself. Through “equilibrium” we understand harmony or balance which all of nature demonstrates to us and which is a guide for right living. We must respect others but must also have self-respect. We must live this life but prepare for another. If when you take a vow, you do not fully intend to keep it, you lie to yourself and perjure yourself before God.

Maundy Thursday Ceremony:Each man must account for his own actions. What there is, to be our fate and fortune, depends upon ourselves.

The York Rite of Freemasonry

Mark Master Degree: This degree very impressively illustrates the inherent values found in honest employment and charitable activity. It stresses the importance of the erection of one’s own moral and spiritual temple. Let your conduct in the lodge and among your brethren be such as may stand the test of the Grand Overseer’s Square.

Past Master Degree: This degree stresses the lesson, that he who would rule others must first learn to rule himself. He who rules best is one who has learned the important lesson of self-control.

Excellent Master Degree: Symbolically it represents the building of life and character and the reward which comes to him who faithfully performs this task. It is one of your great duties to dispense light and truth to the uninformed Mason.

Royal Arch Degree: Except for the Master Mason’s degree, we are told that no Masonic Degree is more important in its historical and symbolic significance. It brings to light that for which the Mason has searched. Here we are bound by the most solemn ties to promote each other’s welfare and correct each other’s failings, by advice, admonition and reproof.

Royal Master Degree: Death terminates the labor of a man. Therefore, we should build industriously while our strength endures, and labor to complete our work ere the week closes and the Sabbath of Eternity sets in.

Select Master Degree: Let uprightness and integrity attend your steps; let justice and mercy mark your conduct; let fervency and zeal stimulate you in the discharge of the various duties incumbent upon you.

Order of the Red Cross: This Illustrious Order teaches the lesson of the triumph of Truth. Truth is a divine attribute, and the foundation of every virtue. To be good and true is the first lesson we are taught in Masonry (same as indicated in our First Degree).

Order of Malta: We are to press onward in the cause of Truth and Justice. It also teaches the triumph of Immortality – that, though death has its sting, its infliction is but for a moment.

Order of the Temple: This Order is wholly Christian where beautiful lessons in the death and ascension of our Savior are inculcated and candidates are knighted in a most solemn and impressive manner. Through faith and humility, you should let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your Father which is in Heaven.

Order of the Eastern Star

Order of the Eastern Star: Fidelity, Constancy, Loyalty, Faith and Love. “We walk by faith, not by sight”. The second great law given to us, “Thou shall love thy neighbor as thyself”. “Let us love one another”.

Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine

Shriners: “World’s Greatest Philanthropy” Its Motto: NO MAN STANDS SO TALL AS WHEN HE STOOPS TO HELP A CHILD". Its inspired charge teaches tolerance and encourages a wholesome respect for the sincere religious beliefs of others.

Albert Pike:

“What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us, what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal

Masonry is Work!

It’s time the Freemasons lead the way in Making a Difference!

References:

  • North Carolina Lodge Manual, Charles F. Bahnson.
  • A Bridge to Light, Rex R. Hutchens – Supreme Council 33°of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, Southern Jurisdiction, United States of America.
  • Scottish Rite Ritual, Monitor & Guide, Arturo de Hoyos.
  • Coil’s Masonic Encyclopedia.
  • Mackey’s Revised Encyclopedia of Freemasonry.
  • General Grand Chapter, Order of the Eastern Star Ritual.
  • Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine Ritual and various literature.
  • A Preview of the York Rite (York Rite Sovereign College of North Carolina), The York Rite of Freemasonry, (A History and Handbook) and various York Rite Rituals.

M... W...Dwight M. “Mack” Sigmon

Grand Master – 2019

P.O. Box 721

Newton, NC 28658

msigmon@glnc.us

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