Well, it’s about time that some of the Freemasons came to their senses, and we should all be thankful that Florida has the temerity to lead the way. I’m talking, of course, about the recent edict by the Most Worshipful Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Florida who is evicting anyone from the Craft who are not right-thinking, God-fearing Freemasons.
The Masonic online discussion world has been all a-Twitter over this, so there’s no need for me to go over the details, but the essentials (from the Grand Master’s Edict page) are these:
The question has arisen if certain religious practices are compatible with Freemasonry, primarily Paganism, Wiccan and Odinism, and secondarily Agnosticism and Gnosticism.
He then natters on about some legal stuff, and writes:
I. CONCERNING GOD AND RELIGION
“A Mason is obliged, by his tenure, to obey the moral law; and if he rightly understands the art, he will never be a stupid Atheist, nor an irreligious libertine.”……….
And then finishes up with the important part:
Therefore, as Grand Master, it is my Ruling and Decision that none of the above mentioned beliefs and/or practices are compatible with Freemasonry since they do not believe or practice one or more of the prerequisites to be a candidate for Masonry listed above.
Further, any member of the Craft that professes to be a member of one of the groups mentioned above shall tender his resignation or suffer himself to a Trial Commission whose final outcome will be expulsion since there is no provision to allow anything contrary to the Ancient Landmarks.
Furthermore, Freemasonry prohibits the change of any of the Ancient Landmarks, and its members admit that it is not in power of any man, or body of men, to make innovations in the body of Masonry.
It’s about time that somebody took a stand to kick out those trouble-making types who can’t commit to a real religion, and who pick some made-up theology in order to join the fraternity. My only beef is that MWGM Jorge Aladro hasn’t gone far enough.
For anyone who hasn’t been paying attention to Tom Hanks, Nicholas Cage, or any of those TV specials that have come up in the last five years, the Freemasons have very few actual requirements for joining. You must be a man, of lawful age, of good character, with a belief in a Supreme Creator. Some jurisdictions change the qualifications slightly, but those are the basics. Florida, apparently, has gotten tired of non-religious posers who are trying to sneak into the fraternity by claiming to be believers in completely fictitious, made-up religions like Paganism. Personally, I can’t imagine anything good coming from allowing such trouble makers into the Craft. If a real religion isn’t good enough for those people — or as is more likely the case, those people aren’t good enough for a real religion — then they are obviously rebels who will end up causing nothing but trouble for those around them.
My only concern is that Florida is about 240 years too late. Reading through my Masonic history books, I see that quite a large number of Freemasons from that time were also posers who claimed to belong to some movement called Deism. You can tell that Deism isn’t a real religion because they don’t have any churches. But even at that, listen to what those guys believed:
Deism holds that God does not intervene with the functioning of the natural world in any way, allowing it to run according to the laws of nature that he configured when he created all things. God is thus conceived to be wholly transcendent and never immanent. For Deists, human beings can only know God via reason and the observation of nature, but not by revelation or supernatural manifestations (such as miracles) – phenomena which Deists regard with caution if not skepticism. See the section Features of deism, following. Deism does not ascribe any specific qualities to a deity beyond non-intervention. Deism is related to naturalism because it credits the formation of life and the universe to a higher power, using only natural processes. Deism may also include a spiritual element, involving experiences of God and nature.
So, let’s see: No churches, no bible or holy book, and a God that makes stuff and then wanders off to
God who know where. Those guys from back in the late 1700s obviously were not members of a real religion, either. Too bad MWGM Alandro wasn’t around to kick them out of the fraternity, before they got themselves up to no good.
If you’re interested in reading more about this:
I became interesting in Freemasonry over ten years ago as a result of my fascination with conspiracy theories – and the theorists. I had spent several years web surfing from website to website, trying to untangle the threads in order to find some elements of truth, and failing that, settling for elements of verisimilitude. Over the course of several years I found that thread after thread ended up entangled with or somehow involving the Freemasons. Eventually I began to frequent web boards where I could read the messages that Freemasons sent to each other. Learning that there was nothing mysterious about them, I began to respect the Masons that I met online, and we soon inspired to join the local lodge, where I discovered that Freemasons (or just Masons, as we call ourselves) are mostly just normal guys interested in hanging out with like-minded people.
Mostly, that is.
Over the last ten years I’ve moved from novice initiate to the Master of the lodge – for which I had to undergo another secret ceremony during which I was imbued with the secrets of the Oriental Chair. Along the way I was appointed to several committees on our Grand Lodge – the governing body at the state level in the US – and was even appointed to a term as a minor Grand Lodge officer. During this time, I made a point to dismiss the twisted ideas of the conspiracists, who we often denigrated as the “Antis.” I’m now embarrassed to admit that I actually taunted them for their beliefs at times. However, I’m also willing to admit that the scales (or should I say, the hoodwink) has fallen from my eyes. In a perverse twist on the state toward which Masons avowedly strive, I can now say that I have been enlightened. I have discovered proof that there actually is a Masonic/Illuminati conspiracy, whose purpose is to pass messages from faction to faction via the mass media. However, unlike the hundreds, nay, thousands of conspiracy theorists who continue to post ridiculous theories on their websites and forums, I actually am a Freemason, and therefore, I actually have information to which they do not — nor ever will — understand.
For years I have read claims that there are branches of the Freemasons that are in league with the Zionists and the reformed (or more likely, never disbanded) Illuminati. I, myself, used to find such claims too outlandish, too ridiculous to believe, but I now see that this is how the Freemasons managed to keep their efforts concealed: they were hiding in plain sight the entire time. The methods that they use to pass messages is encoded in the icons of pop culture, and the messages themselves are passed along symbolically. This keeps the uninitiated from suspecting, let alone interpreting the signals being passed from group to group.
Are all Masons in on this? Of course not, and this is what makes most of the Antis seem so ridiculous. Not even the CIA can keep secrets; certainly the bunch of semi-retired engineers, office clerks, and web designers who make up most Freemason lodges could not do any better. No, only a small handful of illuminated ones are in on the secrets being passed on, and it is now my understanding that they are in government, finance, and more importantly, the mass media. Why the media? Because it is through pop music that these illuminated Freemasons are using symbols and allegory to pass secret messages along to the far-flung reaches of their empire.
I’m sure it goes without saying that it was in the early days of rock and roll that these Illuminated Freemasons realized the power of the media. Early experiments with the British “invasion” bands, such as the Beatles, were rife with hidden messages, and even the occasional researcher can easily turn up dozens of such references. Unfortunately, many of the messages became muddied during the late 1970s with the advent of disco. That was when the Freemasons decided to broadcast those messages through a very small number of channels, and in the late 1980s, it became obvious that they had hand-picked an unknown pop singer named Madonna Louise Ciccone.
Urged to keep her first name as an ironic jibe to their enemies in the Church, Madonna’s career skyrocketed as other media moguls were given their marching orders. Indeed, the most blatant message broadcast was her 1989 video “Express Yourself.” Revisiting that video, it’s now difficult to believe that we completely missed the message, deflected, as it were, by the outrageous costumes and stage antics of the ironically nick-named Material Girl. But hindsight is always 20/20, and it’s important to note that the real message was that Madonna, herself, was to be the messenger, and that those people “in the know” should take note. Indeed, her stage antics were interspersed with a riff on German filmaker Fritz Lang’s silent film “Metropolis,” which is a very obvious sign that the Illuminated Freemasons were in the planning stages of their New World Order.
Pop icons, however, exist at the whim of the public, and eventually Madonna would have to be retired. This was effected in 2003 when she symbolically passed the torch to upcoming singer Britney Spears. Now, I know that some conspiracy researchers take issue with this, but it’s quite obvious when one examines the facts. As you can see by the picture of them on stage at the MTV Music Video Awards, Madonna was dressed in black, symbolizing her death (i.e., retirement), while Britney is dressed in (“Like a Virgin”) virginal white. Even her name gives away the plan: Britney refers, of course, to Britain, the home of modern Freemasonry. Spears are, of course, are shafts tipped with metal or stone barbs. It’s interesting to note that in Masonic lodges, there are several minor officers that carry items called “staffs” or “wands”, but those staffs are always topped by emblems of pointed metal, making those tools essentially identical to spears. Furthermore, the officers carrying those staffs have an express purpose within the secret lodge rituals: to carry messages from one higher-ranking officer to another. Clearly, Britney Spears was hand-picked in order to make it clear that she was the new messenger from the higher ranking Illuminated Freemasons in Britain..
However, the case of Britney Spears points up how the conspiracy theorists often get things wrong. Generally, they seem to think that the Freemasons have unlimited, almost God-like control over all circumstances; however, it’s obvious that those who picked Ms. Spears made a mistake. A former Disney child actor (And don’t forget that Walt Disney, himself, was a high-ranking Illuminated Freemason) one would have thought that Britney Spears should have been able to handle the sudden leap into the public eye, but it seems that her private life suddenly went into a downward spiral. There’s no need to recount the reports of drug and alcohol abuse; they were simply the human failings of a very human person who was unable to handle the huge responsibility thrust upon her. Because the inability to handle celebrity is almost legend in the film and music industries, it’s impossible to know how many other messengers there may have been — or have been lost — over the decades.
Before the messages themselves could be reliably transmitted, it would be imperative to find another messenger — one that would be believable for those on the receiving end. Fortunately, the Illuminated Freemasonic cabal anticipated the need for this and had already begun grooming the next messenger: Stefani Germanotta.
While it almost goes without saying that Lady Gaga became the next messenger, it’s worth noting that she was aware of the fact that she was being groomed for the position. I haven’t figured out if the constant barrage of Illuminati symbolism in her music and videos is a “hidden in plain sight” ruse, or if she is deliberately throwing the messages in our collective faces as a display of power. Either way, there is no question that Gaga has been carefully groomed to deliver the symbolic messages for the foreseeable future. For example, her early videos were rife with Gaga making odd hand signals, easily recognizable to any initiated Freemason. However, what could not possibly be a coincidence is her making liberal use of “All Seeing Eye” symbology, ranging from wearing of dark glasses, to covering one eye, to (most importantly) the “V” sign framing one eye in various scenes. Signs regarding “The eye of Horus” or “The All Seeing Eye” are recognizable to even non-Masons; such posing goes beyond the obvious and well into the blatant. Gaga is not doing this by accident, and it is my opinion that she is intentionally signalling that not only is she the new messenger, but that she’s aware of being the messenger, and intends to carry out that office in any manner possible. Whether this is to put some level of confidence back into those on the receiving end (who had presumably been left hanging since the dark days of Britney Spears), or to signal that plans have been moved into a higher gear, or possibly, a more public arena remains to be seen.
However, this is yet another case of how the initiated conspiracy theorists get things wrong. For instance, one popular conspiracy theorist writes often on his interpretations of pop music, and frequently expresses the opinion that the artists are conveying the message that they are caught in a prison and forced to do the bidding of their Illuminated Freemason overlords. Nothing could be further from the reality, which is that most of the pop cultural icons are, indeed, pleased to have been enriched financially, and have taken full advantage of the perks offered to them. This probably offers up a clue as to why Gaga herself throws so much symbolism into her videos: she’s flaunting her wealth and power.
The question arises that if Gaga is so blatant, how could there be any certainty that she is the messenger of a secret cabal? However, the chain that links Gaga to previous messengers is simply undeniable.
- While the backstory varies somewhat, the publicly given acknowledgement of Stefani Germanotta’s stage name is that a music producer friend of hers remarked that she reminded him of the old Queen song “Radio Gaga,” and a typo or a bad autocorrect changed that title to Lady Gaga. She liked the name, and took it as a stage moniker.
- Gaga (as she is now called) has posed with Masonic backdrops.
- Gaga’s latest music single is entitled “Born This Way,” the title being a nod to her having been groomed for several years for this office. The backbeat to this song is somewhat reminiscent of a major single from a previous messenger, Madonna. If you listen closely, you can hear echoes of the 1989 tune “Express Yourself.”
- The video to “Express Yourself” had a number of references to German Filmmaker Fritz Lang’s 1927 film “Metropolis.”
- Gaga’s actual last name is Germanotta
- Madonna, herself, retired from the office and moved to Britain (!) where she became known for studying the Kaballah, which itself is closely linked with the other esoteric studies associated with the Freemasons and the Illuminati, and shows signs of a Zionist tie-in.
- Part of the lyrics in “Born This Way” are “Don’t be a drag, just be a queen,” a reference to the band which gave Gaga her stage name.
- The band Queen (a reference to Britain, the home of Illuminated Freemasonry) wrote the song “Radio Gaga” in 1985, at least a year before Stefani/Gaga was born. “Radio Gaga” contains not just references, but actual clips of the original movie “Metropolis.”
- The front man for Queen had the stage name of Freddie Mercury.
And in Roman mythology, who was Mercury? None other than the messenger of the gods.
Could anyone possibly need more proof than this?
We listen to all sorts of music in my house, and the radio stations will often flip from “classic” rock, to 80s/90s alternative, to current pop, to NPR, and even AM talk radio. So, last year when Lady Gaga was the new, hot thing over the pop airwaves, I really got to enjoy listening to her witty lyrical takes on the New York club scene, and the music business.
Okay, let’s stop here. For those of you readers who have not heard of Lady Gaga, it’s time to unplug your AOL dial-up connection, order some broadband, and spend some time on Youtube.
Oh, and welcome to the 21st century.
Yes, the millennium finally ticked over a few years ago, and trust me: it’s perfectly okay to put away your Lynyrd Skynyrd 8-tracks, your colored vinyl 33s of Sha-Na-Na, your bootleg cassette tapes of Grateful Dead concerts, and that Led Zepplin Stairway EP, at least for a little bit, and listen to some of the new music that has been made since the Beatles. Nobody will judge you, and you might even find something interesting.
Anyhow, the other day I was idly skimming some humor website, when I ran across a post claiming that Lady Gaga was the latest example of how “they” (the Masonic-Illuminati-NWO konspiracy) was using the entertainment media in an attempt to control our minds. The post linked to an article on a particular blog which promises hours of entertaining reading.
Yeah, I know. Y’all think I’m kidding.
Back when I started this blog — going on four years, which makes it a teenager in blog years — I wrote a parody of the type of thinking that we typically encounter when Anti-Masons talk about the various flavors of Masonic conspiracies. And over the last few years I’ve written a few more articles based on the conversations that I’ve had with the Antis in real life and on various web boards. And yes, I get a few blog comments, and a few people catch me at a lodge meeting to chuckle over a recent post, but I know that most of you simply don’t take any of this seriously. I mean, it’s stupid — how could anybody take this stuff seriously, right?
Some of you would be surprised — nay, astounded — at how often Masons are implicated in plots ranging from Zionism to the 9/11 World Trade Center attacks to NASA (and the secret bases on the Moon) to UFO & alien technology, to fixing the parking tickets for local politicians. Whew, we’re really busy bees, aren’t we? But naturally, all of those conspiracy theories are completely ridiculous. I mean, alien technology? Moon bases? Hah, don’t be ridiculous.
No, the real Masonic conspiracy is how we control the electronic media and how we manipulate the entertainment industry in order to engage in our mind control experiments.
Yes, that’s right: the people who believe that Masons are using Hollywood to engage in mind control actually believe that they are smart ones.
And that brings me to my case in point: the meteoric rise to fame of Lady Gaga. Her videos are supposedly filled with Masonic/Illuminati symbols, which prove the efforts of the Masonic controlled entertainment media to warp the mind of our youth.
This is the contention of The Vigilant Citizen (“Symbols rule the world, not words nor laws”) in a series of articles that he has done over the last year. Here’s an example:
My first article on Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta called “Lady Gaga, the Illuminati Puppet“ generated a great deal of interest and controversy. It got featured on many websites and I was deemed either a “genius” or “batshit crazy” depending on the point of view. I can confirm that I’m neither of those two things and that I’m just a guy who knows his symbolism. Many news sites and blogs linked to my article by deforming its original intent (probably for more sensationalism) by adding sarcastic remarks like “Oh No Lady Gaga Wants to Control our Minds!” or “The Crazy Lady Gaga Conspiracy“. I guess those reactions were to be expected. To people who are not acquainted with obscure concepts such as Monarch programming and occult symbolism, the whole thing might sound totally far fetched and ridiculous. But to those who have background knowledge and who have researched these topics (a small minority), I was simply stating the obvious.
Since this article, Gaga has released more material re-using exactly the same themes as were discussed in the first article: mind control and secret society occultism. I have to hand it to Gaga, she knows how to generate buzz and controversy around her persona and keep people guessing. The great majority of people still have no idea what her symbolism refers to. So, at the risk of being called “batshit crazy” again here’s Lady Gaga’s latest occult pictures.
Most of Mr. Vigilant’s contentions are based on MK Ultra mind control conspiracies. In case you have any doubts about the breadth of these attempts, he points out:
During their reeducation, subjects are said to be exposed to numerous symbols such as trees, spider webs, masks, mazes, butterflies, etc. They are also shown movies which contain specific symbols (or “triggers”) such as The Wizard of Oz and many Disney Movies. The same way those subjects are brainwashed and reeducated, mass media conducts a large scale mind control project, which starts at birth with Disney movies and continues with Hollywood flicks and music videos.
Yeah, I know. Conjecture and assumptions. But Mr. Vigilant drives home the point in this article:
In my articles on Lady Gaga and the 2009 VMAs, I’ve identified the use and display of elements taken from Masonic symbolism. If my previous claims were considered inconclusive or “grasping at straws” by some, I wonder if they’ll remain skeptical of the presence of Masonic symbolism in pop culture after seeing this set of photos, taken INSIDE A MASONIC LODGE,
If you have minimal knowledge of Freemasonry, you already know the great importance of the twin pillars Jachim and Boaz. They are depicted in a great number of Masonic works of art, such as this one.
Gaga is standing between both pillars, wearing Hello Kitty shoes, occultly referring to mind control programming (innocence, childhood, re-education, etc). Her eyes are closed but she has wide-open eyes painted on her eyelids, which is very symbolic: her eyes seem open but they are still wide shut.
In the picture above, Gaga is sitting on a Masonic throne, complete with the twin pillars on each side of her.
Above her head is the compass of Freemasonry:
She is wearing a Hello Kitty dress and posing in a very mannequin-like stance. Her hands are positioned in way reminiscent of iconic art which displays the hermetic maxim “as above so below”.
In the picture above, Gaga is standing next to the bust of an important Mason (easily recognizable by the collar). The “one eye” symbolism discussed in the previous article is still an intricate part of Gaga’s imagery. She is however far from being the only artist doing this (see Rihanna’s R Rated album cover). Hello Kitty is covering Gaga’s…kitty in another odd juxtaposition of Masonic symbolism with mind control, often found in entertainment photo shoots.
Wow. Just… just, wow.
Over the last year, I’ve used Youtube to watch a few of her music videos (You know, it’s too bad that there’s not some TV channel that’s devoted solely to playing music videos, in the way that radio stations play tunes. Somebody would make a fortune if they could implement that idea.), and personally I’ve been struck by how detailed they are, and how she makes excellent use of imagery ranging from modern to classical. But is she streaming symbolic Illuminati messages to the masses, or is she just a clever mash-up artist?
In my opinion, since most people simply aren’t aware of the classical meanings behind most symbols (and since meaning often changes according to the contexts), then this is a particularly ineffective way of sending a signal. Personally, I just enjoy them for the effects.
If you have the time and inclination, you might be tempted to follow the links to his other articles which list examples of the symbolism and hidden/secret messages that she is sending on behalf of our Zeta-Reticulan overlords. I rather liked the assertion that her frequent use of her fingers framing her eyes are examples of the “eye in the pyramid”, which, as everyone knows, is a Masonic symbol (finding it on the back of our money and all that).
Yeah, I know. He’s just some guy with too much time on his hands writing a blog, right? I mean, they’ll let anybody have a blog nowadays — as witnessed by the very one that you’re reading.
But more instructive is not the blog itself, but the literally several hundred comments on these posts by people who are not just agreeing, but often augmenting them with links and information and theories of their own. I’m less worried about the one blog than I am about the hundreds — perhaps thousands — of people who take it so seriously.
Sometimes I read these conspiracy theories and I marvel at the amount of effort that people put into them; the connections and inferences drawn, the hunt for the data, and the time taken to make these mental leaps. But other times I simply shake my head and wonder why they bother.
Maybe, when our lives simply aren’t going the way we’d like them to be, it’s just easier to point to some larger conspiracy that keeps us from achieving our goals and dreams, instead of simply accepting that sometimes — perhaps most of the time — we can’t always get what we want.
Connecticut may seem a long way from Haiti, both geographically and culturally, but five years ago, members of the Haitian community requested permission to form a lodge. After a year under dispensation, during which they had to learn the very different Connecticut workings, they were chartered as Universal Fraternity Lodge No. 149 in 2006.
The following article was originally written by RW Carl Ek for The Connecticut Freemason.
Universal Fraternity Lodge No. 149 – Their Strength is in Prayer
by Carl G. Ek
The sound of singing could be heard in the anteroom as the lodge opened. The brothers again joined in song as a delegation from the Grand Lodge was received – in French, of course, as this is the native language of so many of the brothers of Universal Fraternity Lodge No. 149.
Yet the music lacked the joy usually associated with the brothers of this lodge. The songs were a capella, with the organist away, dealing with personal issues. Pro-tem officers filled the West and the secretary’s chair. And while the room was well filled, the majority of brothers were almost certainly visitors.
Recently installed Worshipful Master Leslie St. Victor welcomed his visitors – RW’s Deputy Grand Master Charles A. Buck, Jr., Grand Senior Warden James T. McWain, and Grand Senior Deacon Simon R. LaPlace, plus a number of past and present District Deputies and Associate Grand Marshals. All were present to bring early support to brothers just beginning to learn the horrors of Haiti’s earthquake. Universal Fraternity Lodge No. 149, Stratford, was chartered at the Grand Lodge of 2006, but nearly all of its charter members were made Masons in their native Haiti. These good brothers bring traditions of their homeland to their new Grand Lodge, making a positive impression on those who have had the pleasure to visit their communications and celebrations.
In Haiti, it was clear there was nothing to celebrate. The poorest country in the western hemisphere, Haiti has been described as a country lacking food, clean water, medical facilities, infrastructure, or even a working government – and this was before the earthquake. On January 16, less than a week after the quake, even factual information was hard to come by.
WM St. Victor emotionally filled in some of the facts that were known concerning “the inexplicable calamity of the island of Haiti” as it affected members of his lodge. His mom was uninjured, and he was planning to go to Haiti to bring her back to Connecticut. His father-in-law had lived for a half century in Brooklyn, New York before deciding to return to his homeland. His home was flattened; his own 98 year-old mother and an infant survived, but he did not. Bro. Leslie knew of at least six of his relatives who had been taken by the quake and its aftershocks.
The sister of one brother worked for the Archdiocese of Haiti. She died in the collapse of the cathedral, as did the Archbishop. Another brother had seven relatives – including his father and father-in-law – living in the same house. What was left of the structure had been shown several times on television news, but he could get no information about his family. All that he was told was that there were “bad smells” coming from the flattened dwelling.
The Master said that he and his brothers were, as best, coping, “not understanding why, not understanding how, not understanding how much their poor little country would have to suffer.” Against that backdrop, all present took part in a program of hope. “We pray for those who survive,” said WM St. Victor, who asked all present to “learn from the devastation how merciful can be the Almighty.”
Noting that “there is strength in prayer,” the Master led the group in the reading of several psalms, some familiar, others less so. “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want… He restoreth my soul… Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.” (Psalm 23:1,3 4) “I will say unto God my rock, Why hast thou forgotten me? why go I mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?” (Psalm 42:9) “Have mercy upon me, O God…” (Psalm 51) “Make haste, O God, to deliver me; make haste to help me, O Lord… But I am poor and needy: make haste unto me, O God: thou art my help and my deliverer; O Lord, make no tarrying.” (Psalm 70:1,5) “Wilt thou not revive us again: that thy people may rejoice in thee? Shew us thy mercy, O Lord, and grant us thy salvation.” (Psalm 85:7) The readings were concluded by the singing of the “Haitian Faith Battle Song,” en Francais, certainment.
A number of visiting brothers stepped forward as early responders to MW Arthur H. Carlstrom’s request that Connecticut brothers wishing to help in Haitian relief send checks to he Universal Fraternity Lodge Relief Fund. Worshipful Master Tony Foote of Corinthian Lodge No. 104, Stamford, presented a check for $1,000, and RW Steven Bowen delivered a Temple Lodge No. 65 check for $2,120. Bro. Chris Buck, Senior Warden of Ansantawae Lodge No. 89, Milford, delivered the proceeds of a collection taken the night before at his lodge. He was startled to find exactly $149 in cash donations.
Several brothers mentioned gifts to other relief agencies, while a number noted that they have not yet met but would be making donations as soon as their lodges opened. In total, over $5,500 had already been donated by lodges and brothers present in the 5 days after the initial earthquake, with promises of far more in the upcoming days.
RW Deputy Grand Master Charles A. Buck, Jr. noted his sorrow that his first visit to Universal Fraternity Lodge was under such circumstances. He noted that Freemasons around the state share these brothers’ pain, and will do all they can to lessen it.
Worshipful Master Leslie St. Victor was eloquent in his sadness. “We are asking for prayer. We will be whole again. Please pray for us.” And, as he said quietly to one of the brothers in the Grand Lodge suite as they met in the East, “We’ll be all right. We’ll be all right.”
Sometimes internet life takes the strangest turns. Despite the fact that I have written a number of essays on various topics of interest to the 23 regular readers who frequent this blog (none of them being from my own lodge, let alone from Connecticut), the single topic search that attracts the most visitors to this blog – yes, even more than anything to do with religious Anti-Masons, Illuminati/NWO konspiracy theories, our Zeta-Reticulan overlords protectors, or even the Southington Apple Harvest Festival – is “Masonic Tattoo.”
I kid thee not.
About two and a half years ago, I ran across the Masonic Ink web site, and me being just childish enough to think the idea was cool, I wrote a small blog about it, called “Not your grandfather’s Square & Compasses.” I followed that up a year later when I discovered that some of my brother Masons right here in Connecticut had some pretty cool skin art, not the least of them being the Grand Master himself; Most Worshipful Bill Greene, who graciously allowed me to feature it in the article.
Since then, my visits from web searches on some variation of “Masonic Tattoos” have steadily increased. More impressive, though, is the growth of the Masonic Ink website. Started as an offshoot of “The Master’s Jewel,” a site that sold Masonic jewelry, it had only a few dozen pics a couple of years ago; it now rocks the body mod world with almost 700 pictures in close to 200 galleries. More interesting, though, is that the variety of pictures show a lot of members who are anything but gray-haired, moss-backed, old turtles, testifying to the resurgence of Masonry among the younger crowd.
So naturally, I was pleased when the October issue of our own state publication, The Connecticut Freemason, featured a two-page, full-color spread about the body ink amongst our own brothers, accompanied by a several page article. I was also pleasantly surprised to learn that several of our own not only wear the ink, but do the artwork: Chriss Finalis, Mark Roberts, and Michael Jay, all of whom have studios in different parts of the Nutmeg State.
Of course, they copped my shot of Grand Master Bill’s tattoo, but I guess it’s understandable, as most of the other Grand Line officers don’t have Masonic Ink. There are, however, several purple-aproned Masonically inked brothers. But you’ll have to read the article to discover who.
I could end this article right now, but that would be one-sided. Last year, I had an anonymous comment on my Grand Tattoo article that appeared to have been left by a brother Mason who objected to the idea of tattoos as intemperate and excessive. While I personally disagree, believing that – as expressed in our charges – it is the internal, and not the external qualifications of a man that is the most important, I can understand that some people grew up in an era which regarded such outward displays as unseemly. And that’s okay, we are a big fraternity, and there is room for disagreement.
Surprisingly, though, our state publication (which receives very little in the way of “Letters to the Editor”) has had some feedback to the effect that some members did not appreciate the featured tattoos, and especially not the full color front page picture. While I know this because I happen to be a member of the committee that publishes The Connecticut Freemason, I would have liked to have been able to discuss the issue with those who objected, if only to offer them equal time to present an opposing viewpoint.
Anyway, one would imagine that, having had a couple of years to think about it, I’d have my own tattoo now, perhaps even displayed in the October issue, right? Unfortunately, no. The truth is that while I’d really like one, I have not yet hit on a design that I think that I would be happy with when I’m, say, 80 years old.
Essentially, this is what has kept me from getting any tattoo; frankly, I’ve had a hard time imagining liking anything enough to want it for the next 20 or 30 years, especially not being able to get rid of the thing.
I have to stop writing now. My wife, who had been reading this over my shoulder, said that she needs to have a word with me. Something about being lucky if I live for the next 20 or 30 years. . .