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Sunday, June 12, 2011
Brother Shaquille O'Neal
On the heels of the news yesterday about Brother Richard Dreyfuss, Brother James Morgan reports that the Grand Master of the Wost Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Massachusetts F&AM, M:.W:. Frederick B. Summer, has made Shaquille O'Neal a Prince Hall Mason at sight on Saturday.
Brother O'Neal is now a member of Widow's Son Lodge No. 28 in Boston.
His legendary status in basketball is well known. Since 1992, he has played for six NBA teams: the Orlando Magic, the Los Angeles Lakers, the Miami Heat, the Phoenix Suns, Cleveland Cavaliers, and the Boston Celtics.
Brother O'Neal graduated from Louisiana State University, and he holds an MBA from Phoenix University. He's currently pursuing a PhD in Leadership and Education at Barry University. Influenced by his step-father's military background and devotion to service, Shaq has made public service a priority in his life, making untold donations to charities and organizations across the country, and even working as a reserve police officer in Los Angeles, Miami, and Phoenix. He has recently formed a business venture in Orlando to help homeowners avoid foreclosure.
Welcome, Brother O'Neal.
Photo by Bro. "Dizz" Mikael Kwame Cooper. Can anyone identify the brother in the photo on the left?
H/T to James Morgan.
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Interesting. Honestly, more fond of this decision. It'll be interesting to see if he ends up being involved or not.ReplyDelete
he may have the power to do it and no Mason will denie that, but does that mean is it right and fair to all those genuine Brothers who have put their time and effort into the Order and who have allowed their names to be put forward and be voted on by their fellow Brothers.Frankly it smacks of an action better suited to the 1700 s and I thought flunkyisim was some thing better ditched to maintain the dignity of the OrderReplyDelete
My understanding was that he was entered and passed at Widow's Son #28, and was unable to attend the date of his raising, but that knowledge is second-hand at best.ReplyDelete
I do admire Mr. O'Neal, but I can't get past the making a mason by sight.ReplyDelete
I mentioned the previous Dreyfuss story to my WM and she, being French, and in a GO obedience, was completely baffled by the whole thing.
It seems that this is almost always reserved for famous and rich personalities. It cheapens the initiatic experience that everyone else has gone through.
She thought I meant "honorary mason" until I explained otherwise.
Since many Grand Lodges have employed one day classes to fill the ranks, why not simply have a mass "making by sight"?
They can have the candidates fill out the paperwork, pay the annual dues, and assemble at the appropriate location and make them all Masters at once. Then send them to another room to make 32 degree SR the same afternoon.
With all due respect, the making a mason by sight is a travesty, and makes a mockery of Freemasonry.
The making of a Master Mason "By Sight" in Prince Hall Masonry is essentially the same as a ONE DAY SESSION. All of the Craft Degrees are conferred at once at the Call of the Most Worshipful Grand Master to open a "Lodge of Occasion."Delete
No female can be a mason...period.Delete
On the other hand, there are others who would observe that a female WM is also a "travesty, and makes a mockery of Freemasonry."ReplyDelete
Best not to cast stones.
Lacking that, blame the English. They did it first. /:-)
Not in a real lodge of any not let alone PHM noDelete
Yes, for dedicated Brethren who took the degrees in the usual manner and have stuck around to get involved in the Craft, making Masons at sight seems vaguely distasteful in the same way as one day classes.ReplyDelete
However... if a Brother is initiated, passed, and raised in three meetings, dutifully learns the lectures and demonstrates his proficiency, then drops off the face of the earth, does that make him more of a Mason than a Brother who takes a one day class and sticks around, working his way through the chairs, learning all the rituals and duties of each office and eventually becoming Master?
I hope Brothers Dreyfuss and O'Neal get involved in the Craft... but if they don't, it's not really any different than all the Brothers in my own lodge who have been raised in the traditional manner, only to disappear after a couple of meetings.
Very well said, I had to do a double take when I saw the words "my WM and she" I thought it was typo, but I guess not.
I also don't understand the making at sight reasoning, but I have also heard third-hand that he was entered and passed, I cannot speak on what I was not witness to. Hey as long as he puts in the work then how can I judge.
Brother Omar C. Muhammad
Whether we agree, understand or otherwise the concept of making a Mason at sight, we took an oath and obligation to uphold the crafts 25 ancient landmarks of which the 8th Landmark is the prerogative for a Grand Master to make a Mason "at sight". Know the rules Brothers!ReplyDelete
I apologize if my initial post came across as a bit harsh. It is, as you have pointed out, a situation that does occur in some jurisdictions, and as such, really is their business.
No apologies necessary. This topic has stirred up lots of emotion.ReplyDelete
Well gentleman brothers He said "at sight on saturday" at site is the location for everyone who is trying to make a mockery of his initiation. At sight at the lodge in which there was really no need to at the grand or at lodge. Please stop trying to find fault in things that should be beautiful to us.ReplyDelete
Also I see people have been speculating a lot who is to say he took all in one day who is to question his proficiency. Ask yourself how do we meet a brother, how do we act, and how do we part.
Stay on the level brothers and dont let your assumptions get the best of you.
I would like to pass along a suggestion of a new nickname for our newly raised brother....The Big Symbol.ReplyDelete
Me personally, I am a 14* SR mason and I went through all the necessary requirements to become one. All though I am a huge Shaq fan, I feel some type of way that someone is made a mason by "sight". That throws a wrench in the process of actually becoming a member for other individuals. But if he is willing to be loyal to the craft and do honest work for the community as he always has been doing, then more power to him and to the craft in ALL. /G\ReplyDelete
made-on-site is screwed-up! The brother is really short-changing himself. Making a celebrity on-site is soliciting!! You know, they'll probably make him a Grand Master too... I ought to quit!ReplyDelete
I met a few PHA brothers from DC while at lunch in CT on their way to MA for his raising. They said he was going to walk like a regular candidate. I'm more shocked though that big Shaq wouldn't go through the degree in the traditional way. Be hard pressed to find a brother able to handle him as he passed the south gate to the craftsmen! None the less, cheers to him for having the desire to be counted amongst our ranks! Travel well brother!ReplyDelete
My comment for the brothers using the "working in the quarries" analogy is this: is there any difference between a Mason made at sight or in a one day class and a brother that is made a Mason where the degrees are conferred every two weeks? The only difference I see is 33 days.ReplyDelete
I think it is a good thing that the one day class exists. We do this for our Military personnel that are going overseas and such. In my mind a brother is a brother, and I am glad and happy for any newly raised brother, and welcome him to the fraternity!!
Brother Christopher N. Lampe
San Diego Freemason in your comment you said my WM...She was... Is your Worshipful Master a woman. I was under the impression that women could not be masons atleast not in Florida.ReplyDelete
"There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy."ReplyDelete
There are female as well as mixed orders of Freemasonry throughout the world. They are unrecognized by mainstream Freemasonry and considered by the vast majority of the world's Masons as irregular. But they do indeed exist.
See "What about women?" on Ed King's site for a fast primer.
Brethren, as for Shaq. I am not a big BB fan of his. Saying this, I have absolutely no problems with him becoming a Mason on site. Think about this, Shaq is a very busy man. He is well-liked by many and a role model for our youth. Why not make him a Mason at site, where his contributions to society can be seen and the world at large become informed of the fact that he is a Mason. Shaq, even wanting to join, shows me he at least understands what Masonry is about. Welcome Brother. Mwhich have already been noticed can alsoReplyDelete
People are obviously confused about what is entailed in making a Mason "on site". Shaq went through more initiation than you ever get at a one day class where 100 or more guys sit on the sideline and do not encounter physical trials nor receive a physical transmission. What Shaq went through is a whole lot more physical than what most US Mainstream Masons are even aware of. So, he earned his right to rock the emblem. From what I heard, he held his square...and Prince Hall brothers, especially those who come out for a raising, are some very well built, imposing men.ReplyDelete
Masonry is a continous learning - a journey, long way to travel my bretheren...ReplyDelete
Like I said in a masonic forum,ReplyDelete
Shaq has proven himself an invaluable asset to humanity.
I will not doubt or question his asset to our fraternity.
At sight or not. Shaquille O'Neal is my brother.
Brother O'NEAL is a great addition to the PHA F&AM PHAM.. I do hope he has great Travels and always looks to the East.. I personally was raised in Germany in 1997 and it was tough going through back then. Since returning back to the States I have been to many Raising and at times I was shocked how Brothers were just walked through. I Love my Masonic Family and welcome my Brother Shaq with open arms.. Now as far as a FEMALE MASTER MASON? EVEN THE THOUGHT OF IT IS TOTALLY WRONG.. WHOEVER OR WHATEVER "GROUP" THAT IS ALLOWING FEMALES TO THINK THEY ARE REAL MASONS NEED TO BE EDUCATED.. THERE IS TOO MUCH HISTORY BEHIND OUR ORDER TO EVEN CONSIDER ALLOWING IT.. IF ANY WOMAN WAS TO TELL ME THAT SHE WAS A MM I AND MY BROTHERS WOULD JUST LAUGH AND WALK AWAY.. Nasty Noble Rodriguez PHA F&AM.ReplyDelete
If his WM is a female...then he is still not a MM. No female can be a mason, only men. Females can only be an ES.Delete
Dr Jessie D. McDonald, Ph.D.
WELCOME TO THE PHAM BRO O'NEILL.. FEMALE MASONS? COME ON GET REAL... NO FEMALE WILL EVER BE A MASTER MASON....ReplyDelete
You need to get out more.
There are no female Masons in your obedience or mine. But there are certainly female Freemasons. They make up 17% of the Masonic population in France. And the United Grand Lodge of England has a very cordial relationship with the feminine grand lodges in England, without recognizing them.
As for having a rough time in degrees, much of the Masonic world would be appalled by the physical hazing that goes on in some Prince Hall degree work. Telling a man to follow his guide and fear no danger, then punching, shoving, paddling and tossing him doesn't really foster a lot of trust.
But like the female question, there are differences everywhere you go.
Know that a man can be indeed made by sight. There is no love lost from me to him. But a one day conferral? I'll pass...to the poster who said it benefits military, I got my degrees likw everyone else. No one & done...ReplyDelete
female masons?....intercourse with them violates my solemn obligation and so I can't get down with that, equality be damned.
I'am a member of Clark 101 in Springfield Ohio.You now have brothers all over this earth.I hope you take the whole journey, you will never be alone, we will all stand beside you as brothers.
Giovanni V. Staccia PHP spfld ch.48
Much of the Masonic world would be appalled at the degree work of Prince Hall? Oh, now that you don't particularly care for "Nasty Nobles" comment you attack a whole Order that was only formed because Ancient Free just couldn't be Brothers with African Americans? Like there are completely no Antient Free And Accepted Masonic lodges/Military Lodges that may be a little more hands on than others? Maybe it's you that needs to get out a bit more before condemning Regular Masons. With the UNmasonic behavior of our "Bible Belt Masons" through out the years of this nation. Until this very day there are some Ancient Free And Accepted Grand Lodges that have the nerve to still not recognize their states Prince Hall Grand Lodge with full knowledge that we are Regular. If you are going to be critical of a mans Fraternal Order, that he just may hold dear and love, can't you be more tactful? You're an author, for God's sake, that's supposed to have a comand of words. And how do female masons use the Third Degree Pass Word with out blushing? : )ReplyDelete
At Bro. Hodapp, you must get out a WHOLE lot more than "Nasty Noble". I can tell this is true because you wrote that the "Masonic world" would be appalled by the physical hazing that goes on in some Prince Hall degree work. First of all i totally respect the fact that you are a published author and have access to research that may be beyond my immediate resources, but are you suggesting that you speak for the "Masonic world"? This comment also suggest one of two other considerations. Either you have visited every Prince Hall lodge that exist and this has enabled you to issue a blanket statement like that. Or that you have visited every Regular non-Prince Hall lodge in the world...or at least America...and was amazed at the gentleness that they all had in common when participating in "leaving an impression on the candidate". Besides, there wouldn't even be a Prince Hall Masonic Order if our gentle degree giving Ancient Free And Accepted Brothers had read their Rituals a bit more carefully. The part about Freemasonry having no regard for a mans race, etc., etc. Especially when there are Ancient Free Grand Lodges that STILL don't recognize their states PHGL with full knowledge of our Regular standing and creation. Point is, i am sure that there are Regular lodges all over the world, as you wrote, that may be more physical with their candidates. To thrust an idea of that nature on a huge blog, by a published author of some fame, is insensitive. And if you are going to attack a mans Fraternal Order, that he may love and hold in high regard, can't you be more tactful?ReplyDelete
And what's with the "the United Grand Lodge has a very cordial relationship with female grand lodges in England without recognizing them." stuff? Seems to me that the last two words are the only message that applies here...the NOT recognizing them part. Who cares how cordial their relationship is? That sounds like a case of "none of my business". I'll bet the "female masons" blush everytime they use the Third Degree password!
I'm in agreement with Bro. Hodapp, a WOMAN as a WM...WTF, only where you are I guess...I don't know that style of FREEMASONRY but hey, what can I say, it's not for everybody!ReplyDelete
Brother, my command of language is actually pretty good. I am by no means attacking Prince Hall Masonry, and I am an honorary member of African Lodge No. 459. It's not a slur or an insult to say that much of the Masonic world would indeed be appalled by the physicality that goes on in some Prince Hall lodges' degree work. And I'm not just referring to U.S. Masons. I am merely pointing out there are vast differences between practices within lodges and jurisdictions that none of us will ever agree upon. That's a far cry from condemning regular Masons.ReplyDelete
As for the ten states in which mainstream and PHA GLs do not yet recognize each other, I dislike the situation myself, but that's a whole 'nuther can of worms that strays far from this particular discussion.
And as to your last point, I suggest you ask the ladies...
I also point out, just for the sake of sheer cussedness since some of you get heartburn over women Masons, that the OES doesn't exist in many jurisdictions outside of the US. In England, the UGLE forbids its members to have anything to do with OES. Women there who express an interest in anything Masonic are given the suggestion of joining one of the female lodges.ReplyDelete
Regarding female masons..I'm curious as to how the 3rd degree obligation reads.. alluding to not attending certain initiations of certain 'people.' I wonder ... Would they see ME as being worthy ? Irony.ReplyDelete
Bro. R.J. Levy
Eastern Light Lodge #4
1st Masonic District
The whole Females being made masons is rubbish. I am not sexist but we are a Fraternal Order that follows very particular rules and landmarks. Any group that knows the ritual can go about making "Masons" out of anyone or anything, but the name is the only thing we regular Masons have in common with ANY irregular "mason" female or otherwise. If we are based upon very specific rules and someone violates these rules they simply are not masons whther they use the name, the ritual or what have you. I am so tired of people saying women can be masons, they can steal the name,steal the ritual, apply it in a usurious manner all they feel but anywhone who is involved in clandestine or irregular activities is NOT a Mason. We can call ourselves anything we like, and emulate whatever we wish but it does not change the fact of who/what we really are. Female freemasons do not exist despite whatever they would like to call themselves. I can recreate the ceremony of being sworn is as president of the US to the tee, I can even stage elections, wear a suit and do it all in D.C. but if my authority to do so is not derived from the proper place guess what... UGLE says the are irregular, then they dont exist.ReplyDelete
Bro. Hodapp, i agree that there are differences in lodge practices. BUT, i googled the word "appalled". It said to cause cnsternation or dismay. In other words to upset/alarm, and to destroy courage by exciting dread or apprehension. These are not definitions that are flattering. Nor do they put an Ancient Free Brother, that may not associate with many Prince hall Brothers, in a good mental state about Prince Hall Brotherhood. All i'm saying is that is too general of a statement/comment to make when there are thousands of lodges, world wide, that are/may be a bit more physical during degree work. I was Healed from being Irregular (initially made by International, wack!)by Jeptha #90 in Maywood, IL. When it was time for me to partake in degree work for the first time i was ready to SMASH...but only because of the brutality of Internationals degree work. I thought, because i didn't know any better, that that was how it was done! But the Rev.Bro. PM Archie B. Leach, Sr., who was and still is the secretary of Jeptha informed me that i was incorrect and needed to tone down my behavior. I was embarrassed and suprised because i just knew that Prince Hall was more physical than even what i went through! I was wrong and reprimanded by a Brother that i had/have huge respect for. This is the only reason i am fussing so much about this topic. Anyway, much respect to you, Bro. Hodapp, and fraternal love. I hope those Prince Hall Brothers tone it down! :)ReplyDelete
Brothers, Shaq was made a Mason "at sight', not "on sight"...which means that he went thru all the drgees as we all did..He was initiated, and passed...he just wasnt able to make the actual raising on the day set..SO he was made at sight by the GM....so he went thru the degrees and had to study and show SP.....ReplyDelete
As a female finding masonry rather intriguing could one of you fine mannered gentlemen brothers kindly explain to me why one finds it impossible for a woman to not only become a respectable mason but to also achieve the revered status of master.ReplyDelete
As for Brother "Slam Dunk" as I will call him,hopefully he fully appreciate the gift bestowed since he was afforded the luxury to a title that would most certainly like all others be more enjoyed if it was earned.
Certainly. There are several female and co-Masonic groups at work across the U.S., although more of them are in Europe. They are simply not recognized as regular my mainstream or Prince Hall grand lodges. That's no different from the way we regard any other grand lodge that did not originally derive from either the premiere or ancient grand lodges in Britain.ReplyDelete
The male-only requirement is a 300 year tradition that is not going to change anytime soon. You can ask why all the livelong day, but I can't go out for the Bryn Mawr swim team, either. This isn't a Title IX issue.
I have many good friends around the world in what I technically regard as irregular Masonry. It doesn't mean I can't speak with them, be friends with them, and even share discussions on Masonic topics. I simply can't sit in their lodge, and they can't sit in mine, and I can't swap details of Masonic signs, words, grips, steps, etc. That's the rules I took an obligation to.
If you are interested in female or Co-Masonry, I'll be happy to point you in the proper direction and help steer you clear of charlatans like Brad Cofield's online frauds. Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
And to your other point, a woman can certainly become a Master Mason within female and co-Masonic lodges.ReplyDelete
Hi...Your post really got me thinking man..... an intelligent piece ,I must say. Get more information about Texas Masonry .ReplyDelete
I attended a degree at a 'mainstream' lodge in Kentucky several years ago, and was surprised at how physical the degree team was with the candidate!ReplyDelete
The PHA MM Degree I visited in Indpls a few years ago was less rowdy.
Wayne Lodge 112, AF&AMofNC
Bob, I don't disagree with that sentiment. There are Kentucky lodges that need to be up on charges for their behavior.ReplyDelete
Hey Chris, you seem so eager to forget your solemn obl. in regards to irregular Masonry, why be a Mason at all? I've read enough of your works and commentary to realize that you now seem to be so concerned with your image and popularity that you obl. is lost. In which state were you raised and what is their official stance regarding irregular masonry? Most states forbid contact with irregular lodges in any capacity. So again, you purport to be a proper Brother by your works, but your actions say differently. You seem to have difficuly respecting the charges of the UGLE and the rules and bylaws of your jurisdiction. More importantly there are many portions in the various obl. -to which we solemnly swear to- that forbid this type of behavior, and it is high time you look after the west gate. The brothers that govern your jurisdiction ought to stop allowing you to break these rules, maybe they just aren't paying attention, or are looking past it because of your works, either way it is unquestionably wrong. As for forgetmaenot, I have an honest question, I cannot join a sorority, why then is it so important for some women to attempt to force a fraternal order to admit women? And honestly, co-masonry is a joke. Some people do it just to be active in something, but in the larger world of regular(real) Masonry it is not respected. I am not saying this to be mean I just think if you are honestly curious you should know. The best thing you can do is read, and if you actually respect what you find, allow it the dignity to be what it was intended to be. And to Bro. Hodapp, Prince Hall and Co-Masonry are simply not comparable, Prince Hall has full recognition in many states, and partial recognition in others (not allowed to perform degree work together but can do anything else together) and the last few states where it is not recognized (9 or so) will conform eventually, after all the UGLE recognizes Prince Hall. For the last time, hopefully, let me explain that if you do not conform to the bylaws and foundations of a particular group of this nature completely you can call your entity whatever you like, but you are a spin-off, a fraud, an imposter, simply put. If you are not a Regular Mason, you are not a Mason, sorry.ReplyDelete
You're going to have to be plainer in your accusations, because I don't know what you're talking about as regards "breaking" my obligation. I have never broken my obligations, as I understand them and as my grand lodge defines them. I can't sit in clandestine lodges, I can't communicate signs, grips, steps and words to clandestine Masons. That doesn't mean I can't talk to them respectfully and it certainly doesn't give me the right to condemn them. And it doesn't preclude me from knowing about their history and practices. If the very idea of female Masonry or other irregular group gives you that much heartburn, that's your personal demon to slay. I'm comfortable with my dealings and friendships with such folks without fearing that I'll burst into flames.ReplyDelete
And BTW, I never compared Co-Masonry to PHA Masonry. Others brought up the female question that sort of derailed this thread.ReplyDelete
In "regular" jurisdictions that forbid members to be present at "the making a woman a Mason", the obligation could be changed to omit that line. Then, in ten years or so, you would have corps of officers who could perform the work on women without violating their obligation, and the rest of us could sit in Lodge with our Sisters without violating _our_ obligation.ReplyDelete
Why? If I wanted a Co-Masonic experience, I could have sought one out. I wanted, and still do, to have a male-only fraternal association. I can respect, study and discuss the beliefs and practices of female Masons without changing my fraternity or sitting in lodge with them.ReplyDelete
We seem awfully far from Brother Shaq's story...
I came to this blog with a open Heart and Mind. To bad the maajority of you have not done the same. I can respect the many years of hard work and service Freemasons from day one until present have done for humanity- And - your traditions. However, it saddens me how some of you laugh at and make a mockery of women. Was it not a woman who birth you into the world and those of you who have children into the world. And YES I AM a Woman. A Virtous Woman as I AM sure those women around the globe who seek acceptance are as well. BROTHERS - PLEASE instead of picking fun of us HELP US!Please have a heart lead us, guide us but just don't reject us and leave us in the cold to wither away. For every KING there is a QUEEN or QUEENS. A King needs a Queen by his side to rule. But Queen can RULE all by her self. Look at the Queen of England today and all the other GREAT QUEENS that have done so. Just something to ponder. I leave in Peace. Respectfully yours, Sister lakeshaReplyDelete
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First off I'd like to say Congratulations Brother O'neil. I'm not saying that becaue I'm a fan, I don't watch sports. I'll keep this pretty simple instead of going into depth of my various beliefs and reasoning as many of you have so far. Fraternities are for males and sororities are for females. With that being said, females shouldn't even want to be in our "Brotherhood". They wouldn't be considered brothers, they would be sisters(which do not exist in fraternities).
Fact #1: A female Freemason did exist and was recognized in a regular lodge. Hon. Elizabeth St. Leger Aldworth. READ ABOUT IT BROTHERS
Fact #2: Another woman was initiated, passed, and raised in a regular lodge named Helene, Countess Hadik Barkoczy. As a result The Deputy Master was expelled and the officers of the lodge were suspended.
Yes, we have our obligation to stand by but the simple answer when questioned about females in our fraternity is that we are a fraternity. Females join sororities. It's not a sexist objection at all.
For a Man there is a Woman,
For a King there is a Queen, and
For a Prince there is a Princess
1.) "Frater" means brother, "Soror" means sister.
Bro. Isaiah James Williamson
East Freedom Lodge 328
Raeford North Carolina
Hey Chris, what is a "Wost Worshipful" Grand Lodge? Is it one with Elmer Fudd as the GM?ReplyDelete
Hear it is, 2021 and they question was raised if he walked the walk. From anecdotal info it appears as if he has embraced Masonry and puts in the work. He is to be commended for that.ReplyDelete