Interesting perspectives

Discussion in 'History and Research' started by BullDozer Harrell, Jun 30, 2017.

  1. BullDozer Harrell

    BullDozer Harrell Registered User

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  2. Bloke

    Bloke Premium Member

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    The Socioeconomic commentary is interesting. I guess "traditions" also covers that, but just beyond masonic practices and workings, the socioeconomic inclusion and exclusion the author talks of also speaks to the composition and attitude of lodges.

    I keep meaning to re-read Laurence Dermott's "Ahiman Rezon". When I first read it, i did not have the knowledge I now do, and "Ahiman Rezon" is term which seems applied to Ritual Books, and I once thought, applied widely in America, but apparently not. A friend here (in the West of USA) said he'd never heard of it.. Dermott's "Ahiman Rezon" is of Course the Ancients equivalent of Anderson's Constitutions, but "Ahiman Rezon" seems to be a term used for other purposes beyond a Constitution. I would like to develop a better understanding of how the term ""Ahiman Rezon" is applied, and why (there are threads here on it, but I've never bumped one).. Should we?

    Is that statement correct ?
     
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  3. BullDozer Harrell

    BullDozer Harrell Registered User

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    "It also discontinued the Ceremony of Installation of the Master, thereby reducing him to the status of a mere presiding officer with no inherent powers. These alterations in things that ought not to be altered aroused resentment among a large number of Lodges."

    Indeed a strange couple of sentences that i found myself being puzzled by too. After some thought, i had to remember that this article or paper or whatever we wish to call it is just somebody's commentary on those past events. He interprets that with the removal of the Ceremony, there was a significant reduction of the Lodge Master's power. An opinion which i don't agree with because it doesn't make sense as written. It presents a bit of a paradox to say that Worshipful Master of a Lodge because of a discontinued Ceremony became a powerless presiding officer over his Lodge. Something that's laughable to more than a few Brothers.

    Secondly, i had to ponder about 'the alterations in things that ought not to be altered' expressed by the author. What Customs or Traditions were immutable back in those early days? We will probably never discover. I imagine since the whole Speculative system was still being hashed out, it was open territory for anything innovative & new. So was this really a type of 'innovation' that would have caused feelings of resentment among some Lodges? Were all the Lodges even uniform yet and operating on one accord? Was the Grand Lodge system that refined and fixed yet?

    Personally i have my doubts.
     
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  4. BullDozer Harrell

    BullDozer Harrell Registered User

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    "the Irish Masons held meetings among themselves, consulted the Grand Lodge of Ireland, set up a Grand Committee in the 1740's, and in 1751 turned this Committee into a regular Grand Lodge. This action was strictly in accordance with the Ancient Landmarks."

    Another strange part within the writing. I think it was expressed in the prior paragraph than the one I was just discussing above.

    What do you make of it?
     
  5. coachn

    coachn Coach John S. Nagy Premium Member

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    re: For at least five centuries Freemasonry consisted wholly of working men.

    The author made the usual ignorant assumption: "Freemasonry" existed long before 1717.

    Unbiased researchers know that this is not the case. Although the business networking groups at the time (see "The Tavern Lodges", within "The Mason's Words" by Brother Davis), that Freemasonry eventually replaced, had been around for quite a long time, the new "Freemasonry" itself was wholly different from them, what they did and how they met. Albeit, it did borrow heavily from what these tavern lodges did, as it did from so many other sources.

    The irony of all this is this: The moderns started something totally new and the ancients follow suit on this, claimed the moderns were not honoring some of the fundamentals of what these networking groups allowed at the time and summarily attacked them after the ancients formed their own version of what the moderns started.

    IMO: Moderns and Ancients exist to this day, side by side in cliquish circles of righteous ignorance. The snobbishness on both sides has yet to abate.
     
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  6. Bloke

    Bloke Premium Member

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    @bulldozer We Install our Masters here in a closed section of ceremony only open to PMs. Its special and during the ceremony power is formally, specifically and clearly vested in many, but most specially the WM.... so the comment about not doing a ceremony and hence power being eroded makes sense, but im aplying a modern view not what might or might not be happening in the 1700's

    @bulldozer Of the Irish Grand Commitee, it says a group met, and then formed a GL. The landmarks ? Who knows but i would imaging that GL required a belief in a Supreme Being and did not admit women. Id say it all sounds standard on forming any organization

    @coach Why did these networking groups use a ritual ?
     
  7. coachn

    coachn Coach John S. Nagy Premium Member

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    Did I say they did?
     
  8. Bloke

    Bloke Premium Member

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    No you did not... but we're familiar with early rituals and rules which incorporate moral and philosophical rules and teachings. So these "Tavern Lodges" did not have such rules ? If not, were they really Masonic Lodges ?
     
  9. coachn

    coachn Coach John S. Nagy Premium Member

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    Good!
    It's clear that you're asking a rhetorical question linking these tavern lodges with what we are familiar. Networking groups usually have some rule base. Do they have teachings? Good question.

    But let's get into some foundational assumptions. If we were to believe the lore of our collective organizations, they would have had to since it is assumed we are both a continuation of what they did AND what we have now has been going on since time immemorial. We know Freemasonry is not a continuation of stonecraft and that Freemasonry started around 1717ish.

    But I shall point out that you've gone from "ritual" in your first question to "rules" in your second.
    1. They were likely lodges in the "gathering of men" sense for the purposes of networking and included many complimentary business types.
    2. They could not have been Freemasonic. They might have included some stonecraft members.
    3. As far as being "Masonic" in the sense of "stonecraft", likely they were not in the sense that we are left to believe by our collective organizational law.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2017
  10. SimonM

    SimonM Registered User

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    @coachn Is there any evidence that the use of rituals that was used from 1717 and onward where new at that point? Or is there just an absence of evidence that these kinds of rituals was used before that?


    Sent from my iPhone using My Freemasonry
     
  11. Bloke

    Bloke Premium Member

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    So, according to "The Tavern Lodges", did they have ritual ?
     
  12. coachn

    coachn Coach John S. Nagy Premium Member

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    Okay... I just reread the chapter...

    Did they (these collective tavern lodges) have ritual? Well, not collectively due to the wide variety of differing reasons people had for frequenting as members of tavern lodges. The author asserts that those meeting in taverns as lodges had informal ceremonies and jocularities. Later on he says that some of the trade union lodges would likely have some sort of trade associated rituals. (It appears that, at the time, the word "lodge" was used to refer to both the ale/tavern meeting place itself AND the group of men associated with meeting within that establishment.) He shares that there were very few "lodges" that were founded up and into the 1700s and into the middle of the 18th century that did not meet in taverns; early members of our society would have it no other way (due to the importance of the "tavern" culture at the time).

    Not from the author:
    1. Were these trade union rituals anything like what we have today? No. They were far simpler, less theatrical, and concisely short.
    2. Were the trade union rituals borrowed and used as a foundation for our theatrical society? Absolutely! There's no doubt that Bro. Anderson borrowed huge swaths of one specific trade's lexicon, symbols, lore and rules from available manuscripts.
     
  13. BullDozer Harrell

    BullDozer Harrell Registered User

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    How can we deduce that Anderson borrowed heavily from the trade union rituals?

    I can see the influence of the Regius Poem (Halliwell MS) in the 1723 premier edition. Even can see the Influence of the Graham MS in his 1738 edition.

    However i haven't ever came across these trade union rituals in print. Do you have them or can you point a Brother to accessing them?
     
  14. Bloke

    Bloke Premium Member

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    As far as I know, "trade union" rituals are latter...

    "The United Brotherhood of Railway Employees (UBRE) was an industrial labor union established in Canada in 1898,"
    "
    The Brotherhood Railway Carmen of America, commonly known as the Brotherhood of Railway Carmen (BRC), was a fraternal benefit society and trade union established in the United States of America. The BRC united railroad employees involved in the repair and inspection of railroad cars to advance their common interests in the realm of hours of work, wages, and working conditions.

    The organization traces its genesis to a seven-member group called the Brotherhood of Railway Car Repairers of North America founded late in October 1888 in a railway car in Iowa."

    (both the above from wikipedia)

    But Coach might be talking more about pronto-uniionists... (?)
     
  15. coachn

    coachn Coach John S. Nagy Premium Member

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    The paper he put together circa 1721-1722, within a short time after the first PGL dinner gatherings and referred to as "Andersons Constitutions", points toward his having access to stonecraft manuscripts available in his area at that time.

    Interesting point to note: eleven pages of that 90+ page creation were songs.
    Good!
    An actual "printed" ritual? Do you really think it is likely that anyone will find many written out rituals prior to Freemasonry's PGL coming into existence in about 1717?
    The "rituals" to which I refer are not the scripted plays that were laid out as the foundation for what most Freemasonic lodges use today. I am talking about the available resources of the day from which Anderson created his work(s).: The manuscripts that these trade unions used (and there are quite a few) along side the usual banter that one would usually find going on within these groups.

    BTW - Trade Unions = Trade Guilds, Trade Association, etc. and not unions as we think of them in modern terms.
     
  16. Bloke

    Bloke Premium Member

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    I think a " trade union" in any sense is a post industrial revolution construct Coach.

    What is interesting about post industrial trade unions is some did have oaths of secrecy and/ or loyalty and have Masonic Characteristics.... but that does not make them Masonic lodges (despite in some instances the guard at these meetings was sometimes called a "tyler"). For me, the link between fraternalisn and unionism is murky.....
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knights_of_Labor

    A famous Australian like Henry Lawson (1867-1922), Australian poet and author, has erroneously been listed as a Freemason because people read of his (probable) membership of the Knights and thing it's a Masonic organization.....

    I often wonder if modern unions would have developed as they did without fraternalism as a model...
     
  17. Ripcord22A

    Ripcord22A Site Benefactor

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    I feel that when we look for the "where did we come from" answer and try to link it to things like KT and Illuminati and other things its degrades what we are/should be and also fuels the fire of the Alex Jones' of the world. When guys like him can say, "look even self professed members say theres a link to these things and oh look at this other guy who says hes a Mason, always talking about 'mysticism' or in laymans terms black magic"
    and then before long we're goat riding, sheep sacraficing, magic practicing devil worshipers who wear cloakes and funny hats so we pretend to be the KKK. Cant we just appreciate Freemasonry for what it is? A great group of guys that we can get together with, eats some food, bs with and discuss things that interest us and then ever so often make the new guy do some moderately weird stuff in order to be able to call himself a member!

    Sent from my LG-H918 using My Freemasonry mobile app
     
  18. Bloke

    Bloke Premium Member

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    LOL

    I hear you, but the origins are interesting because they are so murky.. I don't think anyone here is thinking KT or Illuminati, we're taking pubs and trade guilds.. we're trying to explore facts we know, not fancy.. but it does all end up in speculation, but KT/Illuminati speculation does not survive scholarly examination, the Tavern origins Coach is talking about has a lot more evidence (which is why it is of interest), but its all circumstantial. Even the simple statement "the first modern Grand Lodge was formed in 1717 in a pub" is being questioned, even by those who subscribe to it (me), with the date being recently put in doubt..
     
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  19. coachn

    coachn Coach John S. Nagy Premium Member

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    I think any sense of the term I used within context would be stripped away upon insertion into another context.
    Yup. such things are human in construct hence there would be some Venn overlap to be expected since humans are what each have in common.
    A human tendency, no doubt ;-)
    I don't wonder about it often. However, when I do, I go back to that Human Venn thingy. ;-)
     
  20. coachn

    coachn Coach John S. Nagy Premium Member

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    Agreed!
    You mean, like we have now? From an ignorant outside view, some actually see us that way. From an informed inside view, we have done it to ourselves by not be honest and admitting our theatrical role playing roots.
    A Total-Immersion Virtual-reality Role-playing Theatrical Society where members never break character?
    Oh, yeah, well, there's is always that ;-)
    Not when you strip away the fantasy and connect the dots of reality.
    Agreed!
    Occam's Razor is a good tool to cut off the fat of fanciful. From its creation around 1717, it was always a fanciful fabrication intended to bring people together. It has morphed so much since then due to continual fabrications that it's near impossible to discern what is real and what is made up. That's the problem with theatrical constructs, when they are done well, you want to suspend disbelief and let the fantasy sweep you away. Not being honest about this is the major problem that we face as an organization.
    Agreed!
     

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