Saturday, May 3, 2008

Agnostics and Freemasonry

by RmOlano
Sequoia Council No. 228 (AMD)

The following commentary is a reaction to a brother's question whether a decent and honorable man can continue to be a Mason if he became agnostic.

A question that deserves a worthy answer, my Brother and my hope is that my ramblings will somehow ease the burden of your journey to discover what you are trying to define. A Brother once claimed that he is already a Mason even before he was made a Mason. A pretty aggressive declaration but that was his opinion and nobody knows himself better than the speaker. On the surface, one could wonder how could that statement can be true if the Brother have not even stepped inside the tyled Lodge? How in the world he could identify himself to “one Brother to another, in the darkness as well as in the light” without going through the initiation, passing and raising process? My thought was that he defines a Mason not as a member of the Craft but one who practices the Lessons of Freemasonry. Those handgrips, tokens and passwords are not that important to him, it’s the deeds that count. A true Mason is a good man but a good man does not have to be a Mason. I disagree on the technicalities but agree on the substance.

Technicalities and substance might be something to consider in contemplating the contradiction of the notion the question posed. Our Craft never asked the Name of the candidate's Deity --- technical question, but as you already know that a belief in a Supreme Being is a requirement --- substance. Because in our geographical area is dominated by Christians therefore, the Volume of Sacred Law is always the Christian’s Holy Bible---technicalities as compared to essence of the concept of having a visible “rule and guide of our Faith” and again substance.

Man since time immemorial struggled to understand and seeks explanation of a notion that comes in multitude of forms, names, and adjectives. Savage wars were fought for the belief of the same Idea with different Names. Throughout the past, technicalities are often the cause of pains and miseries of human history. Despite of the trials and tribulations bisected with hardship, despite the long and winding rugged roads we mortals traveled, there is always a constant companion within us, a cane to help us, a light that beacon the wary travelers of time to take one more step to a place where we can rest. A place to unload our earthly baggage and be at peace at last --- a lesson of the Anchor and Ark, an emblematical description of a place where "the weary shall find rest."

My brother, without Faith is like sailing without rudder, without destination. Without Faith, the Search For That Which Was Lost is only an empty axiom, without meaning, without purpose. Our daily struggle to keep our badge of a Mason, the lamb skin apron to be spotless, is not for our Brethren or for the world to see, it is to be presented as a record of our life to the One with so many names and forms and for nobody else --- to the Absolute Truth, to the object of our journey.


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