So – what goes on in that historic white building on the north of Oak Street? What are we hiding? Are we controlling the world? Is the Ark of the Covenant hidden in there?
Freemasonry has been described as a beautiful system of morality, veiled in allegory and described by symbols. It is not a religion, nor is it designed to be taken as a substitute for one. There are Masons of all faiths and creeds who are members of our fraternity. But to its members, Masonry is so much more.
Many people come to Masonry because of family connections, friends from work or military service. Others come to Masonry because they are interested in its ancient esoteric teachings. Others come for friendship and fellowship. Others come to have an avenue for doing good deeds in the community. Still others come just for green beans. Every man has his private reasons for joining our noble fraternity. However, any true Mason will tell you that the pop culture notions of Freemasonry are extremely exaggerated.
Masons don’t – nor do we aspire to – control the world or any government other than that of our own lodge (although many prominent early Americans, such as George Washington, were Freemasons). In fact, politics and religion are just not discussed in lodge – such topics are actively discouraged. We want peace and harmony in our lodge, not arguments over whatever is happening in the news. A lodge is a sanctuary, not a boxing ring.
Whatever things Masons consider secret, such as modes of recognition and passwords, are just handshakes and words, and of no meaning to non-Masons. The true secrets of Freemasonry must be experienced – the secrets, mysteries, and light bestowed by Masonic Lodges are not tangible, and some Masons may in fact never discover them. After all, the true secrets are already within you; we just help our members discover them through work, study, allegory, ritual, and the more outwardly satisfying work of making an impact in the community.
Masons are friendly. If you should see a square and compasses emblem, you should know that the man displaying it will proudly help you to the best of his abilities if you need it. Masons are motivated to make themselves better and improve their communities. We don’t control things from the shadows, or offer power, fame, or glory to anyone (if these are your motivations, you should really look elsewhere). Instead, we organize blood drives for the Scottish Rite Children’s Hospital, assemble dental kits for first graders, do highway cleanups, deliver meals and gifts to the needy during the holiday season, and offer scholarships to the school district. We are always looking for more ways to make an impact.
In a Masonic lodge, everyone is equal regardless of their station in life, making it a great venue to step up and learn new skills in a practical way while experiencing a rich, spiritual tradition that is deeply interconnected with United States and Texas history. If this sounds interesting to you, please come by and get to know us!