Are you a Born Again Fundamentalist Freemason?

Discussion in 'General Freemasonry Discussion' started by Todd M. Stewart, Oct 23, 2019.

  1. Todd M. Stewart

    Todd M. Stewart Premium Member

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    Having only recently discovered the work of MWB Dwight L. Smith, my first though was 'How is it I have been a MM for 13 years and not discovered this before? My second was 'I appear to be very much a 'Fundamentalist Freemason.' "Whither are we Traveling" and "Why This Confusion at the Temple", two essays over 55 years old and yet still speaking so directly to the struggles Freemasonry faces today. Smith’s universal answer to the problems of Freemasonry as an institution was to “Try Freemasonry.” That is, return the fraternity to its most basic tenets, strip it of its innovations, and get back to the business of concentrating on making men better ones, one Mason at a time. Some stark questions come to mind that I will not enumerate here, but leave for discussion. In addition I found an interesting essay from 2004 entitled, "Laudable Pursuit: A 21st Century Response to Dwight Smith" from the Knights of the North. An effective recapitulation of brother Smith's works in a modern context. From the introduction:

    "We are poised on a ledge, and can either fall into oblivion, or turn around and head a direction different from the one we are going. Not to become just another service club, like Lions or Kiwanis. Not to become more like the “animal” fraternities by turning our Lodges into bars and billiard halls. Not to become crass, noisy, self-aggrandizing back-patters for our charities."

    Brutal honesty? In this brother's humble opinion, yes. What say ye? Are you a Born Again Fundamentalist Freemason? I have attached Bro. Smith's essays as well as Laudable Pursuit
     

    Attached Files:

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  2. Winter

    Winter Premium Member

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    I used to speak at length to my Lodge on those papers and they served as impetus when we formed our EC Lodge. I am glad Brothers are still discovering them and finding inspiration from them. But saddened that they are still relevant so many decades later as we have not learned the lessons within.

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  3. JamestheJust

    JamestheJust Registered User

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    Personally I think that Freemasonry took a wrong turn in 1717. After that did any lodges teach Masonic Science, based as it is upon the spiritual sciences of old?

    Within a generation, the identity of the Blazing Star had been lost.

    So Freemasonry became a semi-public institution promoting morality and brotherly love - the work of the EA.

    Where were the lodges teaching the work of the FC - the hidden mysteries of nature and science? Some of that was taken up by the SRIA and its descendants, but it was not taught by any lodge of which I have heard.

    And where is the work of the MM taught? I have asked many senior brethren including 33rd, what is the work of a lodge of MMs when all are properly trained in the ritual and there are no candidates in sight? Not one brother could tell me. And yet the answer is given in the EA TB where we are told that a Freemason's lodge extends from E to W and N to S and from the center of the Earth to the Heavens.

    The task of management of that huge temple has been largely ignored for some centuries but at last the current generation of school children has taken up the task.

    What then is the future of Freemasonry? I rather think we must await a green fields replacement.
     
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  4. Winter

    Winter Premium Member

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    Of course you are going to get blank looks when you ask Brothers questions that have nothing to do with the centuries old traditions Brothers have been raised in. Its great you study deeper. But you can't apply standards to Brothers that haven't been part of Freemasonry for 300 years. To do so is rather arrogant, as if only you practice the "real" Masonic work. Freemasonry is today exactly what we tell our initiates it is. A system of morality, veiled by allegory, and taught by symbols. It is no longer, if it ever was, a practical system of science. Brothers absolutley should go deeper in the hidden mysteries if they feel the desire to. But it is no longer the litmus for what constitutes a "good" Freemason. That you would question Brothers about the historical aspects of Freemasonry and imply they are lacking because they can't answer your questions is improper to say the least. We are what we are now. Not what well meaning modern psuedo mystics want us to be.

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  5. Brother_Steve

    Brother_Steve Premium Member

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    Some would say mystery (singular) which changes the meaning slightly.
     
  6. coachn

    coachn Coach John S. Nagy Premium Member

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    Which is truly difficult to do since that's about the year when Freemasonry as we know it came into being.
    <sigh> What is this thing you call Masonic Science?
    What do you mean by spiritial science of old?
    <chuckle> Do you actually know the history as to when the "Blazing Star" was originally introduced into Freemasonic Ritual?
    This, assuming that it was not this way from its very beginnings.
    They weren't teaching the FC Work.

    Just because ritual tells members it's valuable to learn doesn't mean the lodges ever implemented an actual institutionalized teaching program. Self-study appears to be the only way to learn what is pointed toward by ritual, unless you actually attend a school that teaches these concepts.
    Is the SRIA an actual Freemasonic Order?
    Please describe this MM Work so we know what you are asking.
    Do you differentiate the work of the Freemasonic lodge from the MM Work? Are they the same? How do they differ?
    Yeah, lofty description of the lodge... but what is the MM Work?
    So, for you the word "lodge" means building/temple and not the men who constitute the members who meet in that building/temple?
    It'll continue to be what it is; perfect for what it does: An Introduction to Masonry... but not Masonry itself.
     
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  7. JamestheJust

    JamestheJust Registered User

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    Here are quotes from "Symbolism of Freemasonry" by Albert Mackey published 1869

    Page 10

    "The definition of Freemasonry that it is " a science of morality, veiled in allegory, and illustrated by symbols," has been so often quoted, that, were it not for its beauty, it would become wearisome. "

    Page 11

    "have beautifully defined Freemasonry to be a science of morality veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols."

    Page 298

    "all the myths and legends of the Stone of Foundation may be rationally explained as parts of that beautiful " science of morality, veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols," which is the ac- knowledged definition of Freemasonry."

    etc.

    It seems a 20th century innovation to have a system of morality rather than a science of morality.

    There are other sciences of morality including Neuro-Linguistic Processing - much used by auto salespeople.
    https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/320368
     
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  8. Elexir

    Elexir Registered User

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    I think one of the reasons is that the word science in the 20th century has gotten more of link to natural science rather then humanities. Natural science in itself dont concern itself with morality.

    Neuro-linguistic programming has it orgins of neuro-science and is not a science but rather an applikation of science.
     
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  9. JamestheJust

    JamestheJust Registered User

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    The core of a science is being able to produce great results from small efforts.

    A science of morality needs to be concealed so that the unworthy do not manipulate the moral values of others - e.g. when entering into an agreement.

    Systems of morality need not be veiled - unless they are illegal.

    Here is a reference to a science of morality:

    Amos 7
    8 ADONAI asked me, "'Amos, what do you see?" I answered, "A plumbline." Then Adonai said, "I am going to put a plumbline in among my people Isra'el; I will never again overlook their offenses.

    Thus we see that the "plumbline" was such a sure measure of morality that the Lord saw no excuse for wrongdoing.
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2020
  10. Winter

    Winter Premium Member

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    You assert that Freemasonry is a "science" which doesn't always work even if we are directed to study the arts and sciences. Our Order is not, itself, a science. Science ≠ Morality.

    https://www.npr.org/sections/13.7/2010/05/04/126504492/you-can-t-derive-ought-from-is
     
  11. Elexir

    Elexir Registered User

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    No the core of any science is to produce results wich can be tested and verified.
    Sciences are never concealed but rather they are pretty straightforward and precise wich is why scientist sometimes seem to be speaking another laungage.
    For exampke I currently study computer science and words that I found a bit esoteric before makes a lot more sense now and they are better and more precise to pin-point excatly what is going on than simpler words. It should also be noted that in computer science small results where took great effort.

    The systems of morality is not conceld due to legality but rather to force you to pick it apart and examine how you can use it in your life.
     
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  12. JamestheJust

    JamestheJust Registered User

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    >Sciences are never concealed

    Except for new weaponry and by scientists waiting to publish and by those working in areas contrary to the standard scientific beliefs e.g. scalar fields, and by alchemists and by those working on human cloning, and time travel etc
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2020
  13. Elexir

    Elexir Registered User

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    That has nothing to do with science though but rather with legal and security concerns. Let seperate the two. Scientist that are enployed are bound by contracts.
    Scientists keeping information secret until they get published is not about conceling but rather that scientists tend to aviod publishing unfinished material as it serves no purpose. Most scientific texts that are published serve to either prove or disprove a hypotesis and in order for that to work the text must be complete before publishing.
     
  14. Bloke

    Bloke Premium Member

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    Hi Bro Todd

    I suggest you have a look at the longer version of Wither are we Traveling

    https://www.freemasonry.bcy.ca/aqc/whither_are_we_travelling_aqc.pdf
     
  15. Todd M. Stewart

    Todd M. Stewart Premium Member

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