how to become a mason

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how to become a mason

How do I join?

For more information on Oregon Freemasonry, complete this Inquiry Form and a local Mason will contact you. Thank you for your interest. We look forward to hearing from you!

Why become a Mason?

Masonry offers the opportunity to make each man better through its teachings, his Masonic associations and a philosophy that has served the social needs of men for centuries, by promoting:

  • Tradition: when you become a Mason, you become part of an ancient tradition that spans centuries. From the original stonemasons that produced some of the most majestic architectural wonders of Europe to modern day Masons who participate in numerous charitable foundations, you’ll feel connected to a vital, growing and spiritually uplifting organization of like-minded men;
  • Self Improvement: learning portions of the Ritual and participating in the Degree stimulates the mind and, coupled with committee work and lodge management, presents the opportunity to develop leadership and organizational skills, build self-discipline through commitment, poise and self-confidence, and strengthen presentation and public speaking proficiencies;
  • Sense of Accomplishment: participating in lodge projects, be they charitable or social in nature, provides the opportunity to contribute, work with others and enjoy the success of effort well expended;
  • Fellowship – Belonging to a Like-minded Group: the modern work environment has reduced or eliminated social association with co-workers; joining with lodge members in a fraternal atmosphere can substitute for that former workplace fellowship lost;
  • A Break from the Workaday Routine: Masonry brings together in lodge men of diverse backgrounds, where the daily pressures of a career can be left outside the door and where fellowship is the common theme.

What are the qualifications?

Any man may apply for membership who:

  • Has been an Oregon resident for at least six months.
  • Is at least 18 years of age.
  • Has a belief in a Supreme Being.
  • Lives a good and moral life.

These attributes are summarized in the tenets, or fundamental principles of Ancient Freemasonry: Brotherly Love; Relief; and Truth. If these values address your needs, Masonry welcomes you.

What is the process?

A man interested in joining a Masonic Lodge must:

  • Ask for an application form called a Petition For The Degrees from the Lodge you’d like to join. One of the traditions in Freemasonry is that membership is not directly solicited by current members—if you want to join, you must ask for a petition.
  • Once received, the Lodge will vote to accept your petition, and if approved, will assign a few members to meet with you and your family to discuss your application and get to know you more. This often takes place during a Lodge dinner or event.
  • When approved, you will then be initiated with the three degrees of Masonry—the Entered Apprentice, Fellowcraft, and Master Mason—as have all members who have joined before you.

freemason disqualifications

Weird Rules All Freemasons Must Obey, Or Else They Face The Consequences

The outside world has long been obsessed with uncovering the truth behind Freemason traditions and other Masonic secrets, but the organization remains largely shrouded in mystery. Occasionally, articles come out with titles like “How to Identify a Freemason!” or “Freemason Secrets Revealed!” but they rarely, if ever, reveal anything of actual interest. Truthfully, all of these secret Masonic rituals aren’t nearly as creepy and satanic as the news media would have the public believe, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t super weird and interesting.

What is Freemasonry? It’s a loose organization of various fraternal groups that trace their origins back to stonemasonry guilds from the Middle Ages. Since then, Freemasons have diversified their interests, and are now essentially community organizations that focus on fraternity, charity, and good will towards mankind, like a more secretive version of a Rotary Club. Or at least, that’s what they’d like you to believe. Dedicated conspiracy theorists continue to disagree.

  • Photo: Wikimedia CommonsThe Basic Qualifications Rule Out A Lot Of PeopleThe basic qualifications that one must have in order to join a Freemason Lodge at the entry level seem simple, but are actually quite exclusionary. For one, with the exception of a few unofficial chapters, only men are welcome to become Freemasons. Anyone wishing to join must be sponsored by two established Freemasons, although inheritance is possible.Finally, everyone wanting to join must attest that they believe in one singular Supreme Power – a monotheistic god, but not necessarily the Christian one. In other words, only men who believe in God can join, and even then they need connections.
  • Photo: Wikimedia CommonsFreemasons Can’t Talk About Religion Or Politics At MeetingsDespite the qualifying question for Masonic membership, discussion of personal religion is actually forbidden within Freemason Lodges. The organization is usually described as “religious, but not a religion,” and they don’t endorse any one monotheistic religion over another. Religion isn’t the only forbidden topic in a lodge, as discussion of politics is also banned.Lodges are often accused of being the location of secretive political deal-making, but the most basic rules of Freemasonry outlaw any such conversation. That’s not to say that political discussions aren’t held between various Masons outside of their official meeting places.
  • Photo: Wikimedia CommonsYou Can’t Bring Your Outside Status Inside The LodgeThe fraternity of the Freemasons is based on equality and equity within the organization. A wide variety of people have joined the order, including a great number of presidents and other important and influential individuals. However, all such grandiose titles must be dropped at the door when entering a Masonic Lodge.Real world status means nothing to Freemasons when meetings are held, and the only status that matters is one’s level of achievement within Freemasonry. Everyday laborers stand shoulder-to-shoulder with titans of industry inside a Masonic Lodge.
  • Photo: Wikimedia CommonsSecret Handshakes, Knocks, And Passwords Are Lodge-SpecificIt has long been rumored that all Freemasons learn a secret handshake, but that doesn’t appear to be true. Although each lodge is sure to have its own rituals, and handshakes, passwords, and secret knocks are part of that, these would be specific to each individual order.Although Freemasonry exists worldwide, most individual orders are only loosely affiliated with one another, meaning there’s no such thing as a universal Freemason handshake. However, some members will attest that, “you can still find out a mason by the way he shakes your hand, if you’re aware.”
  • Photo: Wikimedia CommonsGetting In Involves “Death” And Resurrection, But That’s Just The First StepOne of the main reasons why Freemasonry is so associated with satanic ritual and other dark beliefs is the admittedly macabre initiation ritual that one must go through in order to be inducted. Although the exact ritual differs from chapter-to-chapter, the commonality is usually a mock death in which the individual is blindfolded with a rope around their neck, and then has a knife brandished at their bare chest.After this symbolic death, the individual is “resurrected” as a Freemason. Most members describe it as a theatrical performance. However, this is only the beginning. Freemasons must advance the ranks of Freemasonry by earning “degrees,” of which there are an astonishing 33!
  • Photo: Wikimedia CommonsOnce You Advance Enough, You Get To Learn God’s Secret Name!Eventually, a Freemason can receive enough degrees to become a Master Mason, after which they’re invited to join the Supreme Order of the Holy Royal Arch. Reportedly, this is when members become privy to the ultimate secret of the Freemasons—the true name of the Great Architect of the Universe. In other words, God’s real name.Of course, this supposed secret has long since leaked, and God’s real name is Jahbulon. So, if anyone wanted to join the Freemasons just to find out God’s real name, it’s Jahbulon, and you can save yourself the time and effort.
  • Photo: Wikimedia CommonsThe Basic Rules Of Conduct Go Back To The Justinian CodeThere are a lot of rules on the books in the Freemason code, but the rules have a relatively simple basis. They are actually based in Justinian Code, a codification of Roman law that was ordered by Emperor Justinian in the 6th century. The Justinian Code was a lengthy one, but the Masons attempt to follow the gist of it—“live honestly, injure nobody, and render to every one his just due.”It’s a rough combination of the Golden Rule and the Hippocratic Oath, in other words, but the Masons made sure to get more specific.
  • Photo: Wikimedia CommonsVarious Offenses Include Slander, Sharing Masonic Secrets, And Excess Of Any KindAn individual can find themselves in violation of Masonic Law for any number of reasons, from the serious to the incredibly petty. As a non-political body, Freemasonry specifically outlawed any actions against the state, so that ruled out most real crimes. Beyond that, anti-Masonic conduct included things like quarreling at a meeting, or bringing outside disputes into the lodge.Members could be reprimanded for slander or backstabbing one another, and excess of “any kind” was forbidden, so that included sex, drugs, and alcohol. Masonic meetings were to be strictly on-topic. By far the biggest no-no was sharing the secrets of Freemasonry, and that offense carried with it the harshest penalties.
  • Photo: Wikimedia CommonsFreemasons Can Be Accused Of Breaking The Rules By OutsidersAlthough only Freemasons have to abide by Masonic Law, anyone can accuse them of having broken it. Any accusation raised against a member must be investigated in full, so the ability of outside sources to make accusations is fairly significant. This rule is likely in place to more easily facilitate the reporting of secret-leakers.However, as a caveat, Masons will not accept testimony from those they deem unsound of mind, a list that includes children, the mentally ill, and atheists.
  • Photo: Wikimedia CommonsMasonic Trials Involve A Vote Of All Present Members, And The Accused Represents ThemselvesWhen a member is accused of breaking Masonic Law, they must face a trial of literally all of their peers. Every member present in a lodge for a trial must vote a verdict of guilty or not guilty, making for a potential gigantic jury. Usually, accusers represent themselves as the prosecution, while the accused represents themselves as the defense.This may not be the most legally sound method of trial, but there are definitely organizations who induct internal investigations in a less fair manner. Masons are clear about trials focusing on the accusation only, and not the character of accuser or accused.
  • Photo: Wikimedia CommonsThe Ultimate Penalty Is Expulsion…A Freemason would consider the ultimate punishment for breaking Masonic Law to be expulsion from the order. Such expulsion is total, and removes an individual’s right to enter any Masonic Lodge anywhere, all rights and privileges previously earned, and the right to ever apply for membership again.This punishment, as such, is only handed out for extremely serious offenses. However, an outside observer may disagree about what exactly constitutes the “worst punishment,” because there are some pretty bad one’s on the books.
  • Photo: Wikimedia Commons…But There Are Definitely Worse Punishments On The BooksThere are a number of interesting punishments associated with giving up Masonic secrets to the general public, and they escalate depending on a member’s Masonic degree. At the lower levels, secret-spilling Masons are to have their tongue ripped out, while for higher Masons its their hearts. Master Masons who share ultimate secrets are to be disemboweled, while those who leak things like Jahbulon’s name are to have the top of their skull sliced off, which seems like a death sentence.Of course, most Freemasons either deny that these punishment exists, or insist they’re symbolic, but most probably refrain from sharing secrets all the same.

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