Words from the East
I believe that Masonry, at its most fundamental level, exists to ask us two questions: Would you like to make a better world and if so, how so?
Deep within us is a desire to be better. Not just for ourselves but for our entire society. It is a desire built upon evolution, whereby the human species survived because it prized solidarity. We cared for others so that they cared for us. It is through this natural cooperation that mankind slowly created a civilization. Without respect for human solidarity we could not have come this far.
But to truly understand the concept of solidarity we must recognize what it is – a product of the mind. It was our ability to think that allowed our species to escape its primitive origins, and with that power comes those who wish to control it. Tyrants understand that to bend people into submission it is not the body that must be broken but the mind. Our very ability to think is their greatest threat. Thus the wealth of human experience, the collective knowledge of our civilization, has been earned by resisting those who seek to suppress it. And this resistance begins with an idea championed by Freemasonry with fervent zeal: Freethought.
Our fraternity is not built upon stone guilds of yore but upon principles of the Enlightenment. This historical era was led by champions of freethought, a radical philosophy with immense power. The advanced concepts surrounding human solidarity are not easy to comprehend and without the proper mentorship one can become disillusioned, even afraid. This is why Masons go to such lengths to keep our tools secret. We envelop this power through a progression of symbols, each imbued with countless lessons of applicable wisdom. And when properly applied, we can construct worthy foundations not for buildings but for minds.
The Light of Masonry shines for free, uninhibited thought. The ability to think, create, and imagine without any prejudice or coercion. Our tools represent the Enlightenment’s most sacred principles, those designed to break the mind-forged manacles of oppression. Empowered by these ideas, Masonry can “build” a society founded upon free inquiry, critical thought, and the beauty of reason. A society free of barriers and superstitions, free of tyranny and discrimination, one in which all people have equal and inalienable rights. It was the genius of our founders to envelop Freemasonry in the symbols of stone masons, for our true purpose is to lay the building blocks for the brotherhood of man.
At Potomac No. 5 we do not shy away from pursuing that purpose, we celebrate it. So come to Lodge and let’s see how far our minds can go.
Master of Potomac No. 5, 2014