Tiling with non-Masons present.

Discussion in 'The Scottish Rite' started by Ecossais, Sep 5, 2013.

  1. Ecossais

    Ecossais Registered User

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    On Monday, August 26th, the Scottish Rite Supreme Council 33°, Mother Council of the World, "convened in Council" and opened the Supreme Council on the Thirty-third Degree with non-Masons present. During the ritual opening, the Sovereign Grand Commander asked the Grand Tyler to attend to his "first duty," who then reported that the Supreme Council was "duly tyled."

    The Sov. Gr. Commander then said that we should always remember the words of our ancient patron, the King of Israel, who said "Speak not in the ears of the profane...."

    This is not the first time the Supreme Council has been opened on the 33rd Degree with non-Masons present. The first time was in 2001, and it has continued to do so at every biennial session.

    How do you feel about this? And, if you are in favor of it, then do you feel the Supreme Council should dispense with the act of tyling the Supreme Council? And, if you are in favor of admitting non-Masons into these proceedings, which were tyled from the formation of the Supreme Council in 1801 up until 2001, then do you feel that we should open the annual communication of the Grand Lodge of Texas? How about opening our lodges' monthly stated meetings to non-Masons, family, friends and neighbors? And if not, then why not? What would be the difference, in your mind?
     
  2. tomasball

    tomasball Premium Member

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    As I recall there was nothing but fluff at the open session anyway. It's very similar to the first session of the GLoT, an open meeting just to get the tiresome greetings out of the way. The reverse side of the coin is, would they be willing to actually conduct business in the presence of a room full of Inspectors General Honorary?
    The business of "tyling" the meeting suggests to me that they haven't thought things through. Somebody posted that the Supreme Council "recognized" the PH Supreme Council at this biennial session. I recall they were afforded seats of honor in the east two years ago at the last biennial session.
     
  3. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

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    This topic keeps coming up in various situations. Last year it happened at some grand lodge session somewhere and triggered discussion on one of the mailing lists I'm on.

    My take - I learned how to call the lodge from labor to refreshment and then call back from refreshment to labor again. I learned why to do so - To admit non-members like for an installation or presentations. To empty the lodge hall for a "Stated meeting dinner' downstairs with our families.

    If the members of the Council have not learned how and why to call from labor to refreshment they need to go back to class and take over again "What Ritual Means, remedial version zero point nine for folks who flunked the one point zero class and need to try it again".

    A tiled lodge is for members only. Period. No exceptions, not even because someone in authority decided to do it because they flunked What Ritual Means one point oh. If non-members are to be admitted that's what calling from labor to refreshment is for.

    My opinion on admitting non-members to Annual Communications - Parts of it are fine. Parts are not. That's why we have at labor (tiled) and at refreshment states. The debate and voting parts in particular are tiled for members only.
     
  4. Ecossais

    Ecossais Registered User

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    Brother tomasball: You called it an "open session." But, there was nothing to indicate that it was an "open session." And, what is an "open session," anyway? I think you may have just created that term out of nothing.

    To many, it doesn't matter that the non-Masons saw or heard the "fluff" and the introductions, and the presentation of plaques and awards, etc. etc. etc. What matters is that non-Masons were permitted to BE in a room where the Council was opened on the 33rd Degree. If my math is correct, that is about 11 times as egregious a violation of Masonic tradition as permitting non-Masons to be in a lodge room that is opened on the 3rd Degree.

    If the purpose of tyling was simply to prohibit non-Masons from seeing or hearing the "secret stuff," then we could admit non-Masons into our lodge rooms immediately after the opening ceremony. The wives, families and neighbors could come in and listen to the reading of minutes, the Treasurer's report, the Investigating Committee reports, they could sit through the balloting (they couldn't vote, of course), and they could sit through the District Deputy's message. (No secret signs given, of course.) Then, they'd have to leave just before the closing ceremony.

    But, it isn't about whether or not the non-Masons see or hear the opening and closing ceremonies, or the signs and modes of recognition. It's about the fact that you cannot have a lodge meeting, or a chapter meeting, or a council meeting, or a consistory meeting, or a Supreme Council meeting, if there is one non-Mason present. In fact, you can't do it with non-Thirty-third Degree Masons either.

    You can't admit non-Royal Arch Masons into a tyled Chapter. You can't admit non-Sir Knights into a tyled Commandery of Knights Templar. And so on.... So, why is the Thirty-third Degree disregarded, disrespected, and treated as less important than these other degrees and orders?

    By the way, they opened on "The Sacred Numbers." In the words of PGM Reece Harrison, "the Sacred Numbers aren't secret anymore!"
     
  5. tomasball

    tomasball Premium Member

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    Well, if the non-masons couldn't attend, then the attendance by Scottish Rite Masons would drop precipitously, and they wouldn't be able to afford the fancy receptions and banquets that goes with that party.
     
  6. tomasball

    tomasball Premium Member

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    What's the practice in the NMJ?
     
  7. corpuswinn

    corpuswinn Registered User

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    A similar thing has happened at the last two statewide SR convocations in Waco. They opened a consistory with the word and battery of the 32nd degree. Wives, DeMolays and Rainbow Girls were present. I do not like this trend.
     
  8. Ecossais

    Ecossais Registered User

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    The point is that this is an entirely irregular practice. I'd like to hear what our brethren outside the U.S. think of it. What do you think our Scottish Rite brethren in Europe, who are members of our daughter Supreme Councils, think of this?

    tomasball, arguing in favor of this continuing slide into mediocrity, wrote: "... if the non-masons couldn't attend, then the attendance by Scottish Rite Masons would drop precipitously, and they wouldn't be able to afford the fancy receptions and banquets that goes with that party."

    But, that isn't true. (And even if it was true, it wouldn't excuse the adoption of this irregular practice.) In fact, before 2001, the Supreme Council sessions were held at the House of the Temple. Remember the House of the Temple? You know, that beautiful big Scottish Rite Temple that was built on Sixteenth Street for the purpose of housing and hosting the biennial S.C. sessions? They used to pack the Temple room for the tiled sessions. There was a beautiful dinner reception on Sunday evening for all the guests. They never had a lack of attendees.

    tomasball suggests that the Biennial Sessions were moved away from the H.O.T. so the S.C. could charge registration fees of non-Masons, which would then fund lavish parties.

    Now, they charge $300 a head for registration. I don't remember if the Sunday reception was covered in that $300 fee, or if you had to buy a separate ticket. But, if you wanted to go to a luncheon on Monday or Tuesday, or to the gala banquet on Tuesday night, you had to buy separate tickets for each of those. So, you can't say that they depend on the registration fees from non-Masons to make ends meet.

    I attended several of these Supreme Council sessions back in 2003, 2005, and 2007. Time and again, I would take my SR cap and attempt to get into the room where the session was being held. There was always a crowd of SR Masons standing in the double doors at the entrance. I'd stand on my toes behind them, peering over their shoulders. Usually, one of them would speak to me over his shoulder and say, "It's packed. There are no seats." And that was because the room was full of non-Masons.

    I attended those Sessions, but never got into the room. We'd sit in the lobby bar all day, mornings and afternoons, periodically trying to get into the crowded sessions.

    One S.G.I.G. complained that "We moved the Biennial Session from the House of Temple to the Hilton so there would be more seating. Then, we opened the Session to non-Masons, who took up all the additional seating, and as a result, there still isn't enough room for the members."

    Little by little, the majority of men you see in attendance are either S.G.I.G.s, employees from the House of the Temple, Personal Reps and General Secretaries, and 32nd Degree members, including K.C.C.H.s. The majority of 33rds who have been before, and especially those who remember the pre-2001 sessions, don't attend any more. Sadly, the 33rds who used to attend in large numbers are now staying home, and are being replaced by first-timers and women.

    Of course, the employees from the H.O.T. have to be there, and they aren't going to be critical of what is going on. They have jobs to think about. But, what do you think that Brother DeHoyos really thinks of all this? He won't tell you – not openly. But, you can be sure he is disgusted by it. I saw two General Secretaries from Texas sitting in the lobby on Monday, during the Session, checking their email on laptops. I asked them why they weren't sitting in on the Session. One responded by saying, "Because I haven't lost my mind." The other one chuckled.

    tomasball asked: "What's the practice in the NMJ?"

    Just for clarification: The NMJ? You mean the northern Supreme Council that has gotten rid of the Kadosh Degree? You mean the Supreme Council that has thrown out a number of traditional Scottish Rite degrees, and replaced them with newly invented degrees, including the Abraham Lincoln (who wasn't even a Mason) degree? You mean THAT NMJ?

    You are wondering what THAT jurisdiction does? Because if THEY do it then it must be okay?

    Who gives a ®@†$ ∏@††oo†i€ what the NMJ does. That isn't regular SR Masonry, anyway.
     
  9. tomasball

    tomasball Premium Member

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    Harsh, man...harsh.
     
    asdf4727 likes this.
  10. tomasball

    tomasball Premium Member

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    Actually, I think I'm in perfect sync with you.
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2013
  11. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

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    Chortle. During my decade in Chicago I visited Valley of Chicago AASR-NJ a number of times mostly because brothers of my lodge were taking their degrees. The early degrees are very different but by the time you're half way through they become closer and closer to the same. Degrees evolve including at blue lodge level. They are supposed to evolve slowly, though.
     
  12. Prince Saif Shallah

    Prince Saif Shallah Registered User

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    I will be joining Scottish Rite this coming sat. However I feel very proud of how much studying I did for blue lodge to earn my keys/ tokens/ passwords obligations and lectures. Don't feel as it would be sacred if spoken to in public.


    Prince Saif Shallah
     
  13. Warrior1256

    Warrior1256 Site Benefactor

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    This is what I was taught.
     

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