"To preserve the reputation of the Fraternity unsullied must be your constant care."

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Congrats to Mt. Zion No. 266 in Topeka

The blog Aude, Vide, Tace is announcing the formation of a new Traditional Observance lodge in Kansas (the state's second one, I believe). Congratulations to the brethren of Mount Zion Lodge No. 266 in Topeka.

The Traditional Observance and European Concept movements are growing across the US. I am proud to have served twice as the WM of Indiana's first EC lodge, Lodge Vitruvian No. 767. I don't have the delusion of believing that either type is a magical formula that will "save" US Freemasonry (whatever that means). Admittedly, not every Mason wants to have expensive, formal lodges that have dress codes, high dues, a concentration on Masonic scholarship and long, lavish festive boards. But what is an interesting phenomenon is the influence they have on other lodges. Most TO and EC lodges aren't choked with throngs of members (they are small in size, by design). But they are attracting lots of visitors who see many things they like and carry the practices home to their own lodges.

That's where the biggest success of TO and EC lodges will be.


  1. just a thought. i would prefer to think that Freemasonry isn't for dummies. trying to make it so is something a cowan might do. that "book" and proponents of the "one day class" should be publicly humiliated before being shoved into exstinction.

  2. FYI: It's spelled "extinction", which is helpful to know before one wishes it upon someone or something.

    And yes, what you said before is correct but it is never at the expense of someone else. A T.O. or E.C. lodge inherently works without seeking anyone's kudos or worrying about being smarter than anyone else.

    No, Freemasonry isn't for dummies, but it also isn't for know-it-alls, either.

    Just a thought.

    Hermano Rubelo

  3. Why Number Nine. You've cut me to the quick.

    Now that you've publicly humiliated me, I'll just head for the tar pit of "exstinction." In the meantime, I might recommend this for you.

  4. Chris,

    It's instructive to read comments from bravely anonymous posters. I've never read a blog complaint about "Dummies" or "Idiots" that comments on our contents. The objections are to our choice of well-known and widely-distributed book series.

    I'll take a Dummy who's willing to stand by his words over a whinging coward any day.

    S. Brent Morris
    Chief Idiot

  5. Don't worry, Dr. Morris - most of the real Masons simply enjoy your book and the one written by, um, that other guy.

    Besides, as I wrote back in September, somebody gave me "Golf for Dummies" and "An Idiots Guide to Golf", and I didn't learn any of the secrets with those books, either.

  6. Bro. Tom,

    I admire your familiarity with literary classics! You've got a personal tour followed by lunch awaiting you at the House of the Temple, whenever you next make it to Washington.



  7. Wow, Tom. I'm envious.
    He handed me off to an intern.

    (Ah, but it was the fair Maria, with a beguiling Russian accent, who laughed at all of my lame gags...)

  8. So very sorry for the misspelling of a word in my post. Due to cutbacks at the home office I had to let go of my spell-check girl. Good thing you ladies have such keen eyesight. but hey, at least it gave you a way to detract from the idea being conveyed.
    Bro. Hodapp, I admit that was cute giving a link to yet another book for dummies. Is this the only publishing group from which you garner information? I have to tell you, there are other fantastic books out there which don't use such ridiculous marketing ploys. Does this fraternity need any more dumbing/watering down? What is your motivation for working so hard to make Masonry palatable(sp?anyone?) for everybody.
    This brings me to an honest question.The cover of your book for dummies says you pretty much lay it all out there. What about our obligation not to make the secrets of any degree available to anyone not likewise obligated? If your book does indeed contain such information, how is your oath not being violated?
    Hoping for honest illumination in this regard. Though we may not agree, we are brothers. I will keep my passions within due bounds on any other posting.

  9. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  10. NumberNine wrote:
    I will keep my passions within due bounds on any other posting.

    Well Brandon, I see you failed to do that on your very next post, which I have deleted. What is it about you Halcyon guys that you just can't keep your "holier than thou" switch turned off? Or your manners switched on?

    I don't regard what I have done as "watering down" Freemasonry. I have broken no obligation in what I have written, which you would know if you had done more than just judge the book by the cover and actually read it. Nor do I need to apologize for having written a book that gives honest, simple and easy to find answers about Freemasonry, published by one of the two most popular reference work series in the world. Wbro. Morris and I were lucky enough to have the opportunity to tell the story of the Craft from our side, unlike other publishing companies that have hired non-Masons. Which would you rather the general public read?

    Whether you like it or not, Freemasonry has the spotlight on it from Dan Brown, Brad Meltzer, the National Treasure pictures, From Hell, the History/Discovery/Learning/National Geographic channels, along with a growing number of anti-Masonic books and websites. Books written for smaller, more obscure publishers that are rarely distributed outside of Masonic supply catalogs may very well be far better than what I have written – I leave that to others to decide. But when the public goes hunting for a reference work on Freemasonry, they aren't going to find Pike or Mackey or Wilmshurst or even Allen Roberts on their local bookstore's shelves, and in most cases, wouldn't buy them if they were there.

    None of this has anything to do with the topic of this entry, which is to congratulate the brethren of Mt. Zion No. 266. The men there are actually building something instead of tearing down what others have built. I see you are the Senior Warden of Halcyon Lodge. If the snide arrogance in your deleted post is the kind of Masonry being practiced in your new lodge of the future, it's all yours.

  11. Hello worthy Fellows and Brothers
    I am only an E.A. soon to be fellow craft. but I know that none of hate posted here is Masonic in any way. please do not dissolusion somone so new to the craft such as my self. We came together to unite not to devide, walk in the lite of truth , not beside it. In this world all people both mason and non are created Equile, what sets masons appart is their ever want to better them selfs an want to walk in the lite of truth and justice. these virtues should bring us close not push us apart. the Masons for dummies was only for non masons to better understand what we are it gave no real secrets. good read I think. any way remember why we became Masons in the first place. Jeremy of Maine


Kindly sign your comment posts. Anonymous postings on Masonic topics have the same status as cowans and eavesdroppers, as far as I am concerned, and may be deleted if I don't recognize you or if I'm in a grumpy mood.