Who are the masons?
Let us try, without any mysticism and all sorts of ideological inclusions, to talk about who the masons are, or, if translated from French, “freemasons” (from French macon is a mason).
The history of the Masonic movement
Let's say right away that no one knows exactly where the masons came from. If the question of who the masons are and what they want to achieve is, in general, understandable, then here’s the history of the Masonic movement is very vague, so we’ll give several versions.
The most popular of them belongs directly to the French masons of the Middle Ages. And indeed - most scientists, and even the modern masons themselves, believe that the appearance of the order of free masons should be attributed to the end of the XVI - beginning of the XVII century in France.
It is also claimed that it originated in the operational workshops of French masons, after which by the XVIII century it had become a closed organization and gradually spread throughout the world. However, there are other theories that attribute the origins of Freemasonry to the Templars and the first Christians, and even to the Pythagoreans and the Essenes, and some writers even before the building of the temple of Solomon and earlier.But most likely, Freemasonry originated in the medieval construction artels.
Ideology of Freemasonry
If the answer to the question of who the masons are in terms of origin is not entirely clear, then there can be no two opinions regarding the ideology of the brotherhood of free masons. The Masonic movement professes the same principles as it was at the time of its birth. First of all, it is the unity of thoughts and way of life. If you declare something, then you need to follow it - this is one of the fundamental principles of Freemasonry. Also to the Masonic virtues is work for the benefit of society. It is known that Masonic organizations act only in those countries in which the government is loyal to the fraternity. Therefore, in these countries, masons are actively involved in charity and other useful things for members of society.
As for faith, the religion that the Freemason professes must be strictly monotheistic, that is, there must be an worship of the one God the Creator. Every mason, regardless of religion, is obliged to honor God. Otherwise, in terms of religion, freedom is granted.That is, a Christian, a Jew, a Muslim and a representative of any other monotheistic religion can become a freemason.
It should be noted that any discussions on various religious as well as political issues at masonic meetings are not welcome and even prohibited. This is done in order not to offend those or other members of the fraternity who profess either a particular religion or adhere to certain political views. Also, the leadership of the Masonic lodges always welcomes, if new members show an interest in religious issues, but in no case causes them to change their religion. We repeat that the only wish for new members of the fraternity is the acceptance of the principles of monotheism, that is, monotheism, and belonging to a particular religion does not matter.
Ethics of Freemasons
The moral and ethical philosophy of the masons, relying on the belief in God of all members of the fraternity, nevertheless focuses on the practical activity of masons in the world and affects only questions of ethics, morality and morality. Religious issues remain the private affair of everyone. Contrary to common misconceptions, masons do not seek world domination.The Masonic brotherhood only seeks to qualitatively improve the world, whenever possible making its own contribution to this business, as it should be for those who do not disagree with the words. Members of the fraternity are actively involved in charity activities, are engaged in patronage of arts (the difference between a patron and a sponsor is that the former does not advertise itself, while the latter’s goal is to loudly declare itself).
Well, we figured out the ideology of Freemasonry, and also found out who the masons really are. Now it's time to talk a bit about Masonic symbols, especially since many of them are quite interesting and very ambiguous.
The main symbolism of Freemasonry directly originated from the environment from which the fraternity of freemasons came out. These are the tools of labor of bricklayers who built Catholic cathedrals in medieval Europe. They were the first brothers - members of the Masonic movement. The interpretation of the symbolism of the brotherhood will help us better understand who the masons are. Refer to the characters.
- The columns represent the columns of the Jerusalem Temple, which symbolize the exit to the light for the initiate of Freemasonry, the so-called gate.The columns also indicate the dying of the individuality of a person, show that we are all really similar, each has something good and something bad, so you should be tolerated as far as possible.
- The steps, usually depicted between the columns, symbolize various trials on the path of purification and the blessing of the elements during the masonic dedication.
- A mosaic black and white floor in the form of a chessboard denotes balance in the field of our senses. Joy coexists with suffering, and pleasure with pain. Therefore, the symbol indicates that you should not forget this.
- The compass and the square denote Heavenly vault and the Earth, respectively. Heaven is the place where the Builder of the Universe draws his plan, and on Earth man performs His work.
- The Book of Sacred Law is the book that has the highest value for certain Masons. So, among Christian freemasons, this is the Bible, among Freemasons — the Old Testament, and among Muslim freemasons, the Koran. In those cases where there are freemasons of various religions in the meetings, they are usually offered several books, for the main thing is that the book be sacred to the mason himself.
- Plummet means Truth, but Truth is concrete. It symbolizes the correctness of words and deeds both before God and before society. Plumbing teaches honesty and justice not only in deeds, but even in thoughts.
- Level means equality between all people before God. The law is one for all, regardless of the social and national identity of a person and his wealth, as well as religious beliefs.
- Radiant Delta (eye in the triangle) means the principle of consciousness and is also a symbol of enlightenment. There is one misunderstanding associated with this Masonic symbol. The fact is that the exact same sign is on the US dollar bill. However, this sign was proposed by the artist P. du Simitier, by no means a freemason, and he designated, in his design, the medieval symbol of the Divine Providence. Such a coincidence, which gave rise to many absurd rumors about the Masonic conspiracy, which still exist today.
- The hammer symbolizes earthly power. It is a tool of masons of the highest degrees of initiation.
How to become a Freemason
This question is asked not only by those who would like to devote themselves to serving the community, but also by those who are attracted by mystery and mystery.Just because they have not quite the right idea of who the masons really are. However, there is nothing tricky here and the masons themselves do not make a secret from this procedure. Let's talk first about the requirements for candidates for dedication.
These requirements are high and not at all material. Here it is just the opposite: everyone allocates for the needs of the fraternity the amount that he can do. But as far as the moral aspect is concerned, an extremely decent person can be dedicated to masons who can provide real help to his brothers and society. Real aid, again, means not only and not so much material goods, although such help is certainly welcome.
Masons themselves do not advertise themselves and, contrary to assumptions, do not invite anyone into their fraternity. They only hint to people who deserve it about their connections with Freemasonry, after which the person acts on his own. You have to understand that if you want to be a freemason, you will not gain any material benefit from it.
There are also no secrets about initiation into the Great Lodge of Russia.If you want to be a freemason, you just need to write an email with your data. If a person is deemed worthy, at least 3 brothers of the Lodge are interviewed with him, after which the applicant can be allowed to be interviewed "under the bandage" when he is blindfolded and introduced into the meeting, where they are asked proper questions. After that, if no one objects or three or less members of the lodge object, the candidate is informed of the date and time of initiation. Masons themselves do not conceal that with insufficient recommendations they can make inquiries about a person. We hope that now it has become clearer to you who the masons are, and what kind of work the fraternity of free masons does.
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