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You have great morals and values. Why such weird rituals?
Posted: 09 October 2011 01:23 PM   [ Ignore ]  
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The Skull and Bones Yale fraternity that George Bush Jr. and John Kerry both belonged to have a ritual were the initiate lays naked in a coffin and has a ribbon tied around their genitals as they describe their s*****ll experiences.  I have heard of other rituals where initiates are spanked with paddles and have to wear nooses tide around their necks.  How is this a reflection of an organization based on enlightenment and virtues?

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Posted: 09 October 2011 01:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]  
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mguiler - 09 October 2011 01:23 PM

The Skull and Bones Yale fraternity that George Bush Jr. and John Kerry both belonged to have a ritual were the initiate lays naked in a coffin and has a ribbon tied around their genitals as they describe their s****l experiences.  I have heard of other rituals where initiates are spanked with paddles and have to wear nooses tide around their necks.  How is this a reflection of an organization based on enlightenment and virtues?

You just made a very erroneous assumption.  You assumed that Skull and Bones has even the slightest connection to Freemasonry.
You just described rituals from an organization that is no way affiliated with Freemasonry.  Why would you think that has anything to do with us?  There is nothing done in Masonic ritual that I wouldn’t do in front of my own mother, and if there was anything sinister about it, I would have quit at that very moment.

If you have questions about Masonic ritual and how it pertains to enlightenment and virtues, try Freemasons for Dummies to start with, and there is more reading for non-Masons.  However, the best way to understand how our ritual pertains to virtue is to see it first hand.  Then you would understand.

However, it in no way involves nudity, genitals, or sexual discussion of any kind.

We are happy to answer any questions you have about Freemasonry, but if your questions are about Skull and bones, or any other fraternal society, we cannot assist you.

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Dan

Past Master, Columbian Lodge A.F.&A.M. - Boston, MA
Senior Deacon, Friendship Lodge A.F.&A.M. - Wilmington, MA
32° Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, Valley of Boston
Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine, Aleppo Temple

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Posted: 09 October 2011 01:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]  
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isn’t the skull and crossbones a masonic symbol?

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Posted: 09 October 2011 02:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]  
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mguiler - 09 October 2011 01:53 PM

isn’t the skull and crossbones a masonic symbol?

Not particularly.  It is sometimes used to symbolize death, which is an important part of life (in that we all must face our maker at some point), but no, the skull and crossbones is not a purely Masonic symbol.

I think the error you are making here is assuming that if you see one symbol in one place, it means the exact same thing everywhere you see it.

Please don’t make the mistake of assuming that a symbol means the same thing everywhere you see it.  I like to use the example of the letter X when explaining this common mistake.  People assume that every time they see an eye or a pyramid or a pentagram, that it must be the Freemasons.  Symbols are just representative of something else in a certain situation.  Take the letter X.  Every time you see an X, do you assume it means the same thing?

Example: You approach a railroad crossing and see a yellow sign with an X on it.  Someone tells you that the sign means railroad crossing. 
Now….someone writes you a letter and signs in with Xs and Os at the bottom.  Does this mean that they are siging the letter with a railroad crossing? 
Or how about if you look at a buried treasure map.  Does it mean that there is a railroad crossing on the map, or does this X in this case mean that is where the treasure is? 
Or how about an adult video, rated X.  Does this mean that the video is about railroad crossings?
Was the movie X-men about a group of railroad workers? 
In the Roman number system, did they mean one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, railroad crossing, eleven, twelve?

Are you getting my point?  It is a common mistake to think that a symbol means the same thing every time you see it.  Whatever the skull and crossbones means or symbolizes to the Skull and Bones Fraternity, it almost assuredly doesn’t mean the same thing to me.

If the skull and bones meant the same thing everywhere, wouldn’t that mean that the Masons and the Skull and bones were all really just pirates?  ;)

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Dan

Past Master, Columbian Lodge A.F.&A.M. - Boston, MA
Senior Deacon, Friendship Lodge A.F.&A.M. - Wilmington, MA
32° Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, Valley of Boston
Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine, Aleppo Temple

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Posted: 09 October 2011 02:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]  
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mguiler - 09 October 2011 01:53 PM

isn’t the skull and crossbones a masonic symbol?

I’ve seen movies about pirates that use the skull and crossbones on flags, but that doesn’t mean George Bush is a pirate. 

Symbols can stand for a number of things, and these things can often be unrelated. 

You may find that some of the symbols found in Masonry are similar to symbols associated with other groups or fraternities, but a similarity isn’t a direct tie.

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Mike Kelly
Stevensville Lodge #28
EA 9/15/11

“My most brilliant achievement was my ability to be able to persuade my wife to marry me.”
-Winston Churchill

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Posted: 09 October 2011 02:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]  
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The Masons and The Skull and Bones are both secret societies.  They both call themselves Fraternities.  They both use the Skull and Crossbones symbolism.  They both have numerous members who gain positions of power in the political system such as president.  I am sure you can see this can be confusing for young people.  This is understandably a little bit stronger of a correlation then the link between railroad crossing signs and pornographic labels.

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Posted: 09 October 2011 02:30 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]  
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mguiler - 09 October 2011 02:24 PM

The Masons and The Skull and Bones are both secret societies.  They both call themselves Fraternities.  They both use the Skull and Crossbones symbolism.  They both have numerous members who gain positions of power in the political system such as president.  I am sure you can see this can be confusing for young people.  This is understandably a little bit stronger of a correlation then the link between railroad crossing signs and pornographic labels.

Doctors and vets both have surgical tools, call their place of business a clinic, and give medical treatment to patients, but a doctor is not a vet and a vet is not a doctor.  The things that make these people the same isn’t the issue… it’s the things that make them different.

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Mike Kelly
Stevensville Lodge #28
EA 9/15/11

“My most brilliant achievement was my ability to be able to persuade my wife to marry me.”
-Winston Churchill

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Posted: 09 October 2011 02:30 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]  
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mguiler - 09 October 2011 02:24 PM

The Masons and The Skull and Bones are both secret societies.  They both call themselves Fraternities.  They both use the Skull and Crossbones symbolism.  They both have numerous members who gain positions of power in the political system such as president.  I am sure you can see this can be confusing for young people.  This is understandably a little bit stronger of a correlation then the link between railroad crossing signs and pornographic labels.

No…no different.  In the end it is an incorrect assumption that some people make that the same symbol means the same thing to different people.

In the end, the skull and bones is BARELY a Masonic symbol at all.  Most lodges don’t even use it.  The only place I’ve ever seen it used is in some 3rd degree ceremonies to refer to the death of a legendary figure.  When we talk about masonic symbols, most often we are referring to the square, compasses, plumb, level, 24 inch guage, gavel, etc.  The skull and crossbones is not technically a Masonic symbol at all, at least not in blue lodge Masonry.

Also, to correct another incorrect assumption of yours…Freemasonry is not a secret society.  If we were, we wouldn’t be having this conversation.  I would not be admitting I was a member, or that we even exist!

As for the Skull and Bones at Yale…there is no connection between them and us.

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Dan

Past Master, Columbian Lodge A.F.&A.M. - Boston, MA
Senior Deacon, Friendship Lodge A.F.&A.M. - Wilmington, MA
32° Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, Valley of Boston
Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine, Aleppo Temple

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Posted: 09 October 2011 02:37 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]  
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You do take oaths of Secrecy do you not?

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Posted: 09 October 2011 02:40 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]  
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mguiler - 09 October 2011 02:37 PM

You do takes oaths of Secrecy do you not?

We take an obligation to uphold the secrets of Freemasonry, yes.

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Dan

Past Master, Columbian Lodge A.F.&A.M. - Boston, MA
Senior Deacon, Friendship Lodge A.F.&A.M. - Wilmington, MA
32° Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, Valley of Boston
Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine, Aleppo Temple

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Posted: 09 October 2011 02:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]  
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So your a society with secrets.

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Posted: 09 October 2011 02:45 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]  
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mguiler - 09 October 2011 02:41 PM

So your a society with secrets.

Yeah, we do have some secrets.  These secrets are not anything groundbreaking or damning in any way.  It isn’t like we secretly know who killed JFK or know how to turn old ipods into gold.  The things we keep secret are the ways one Masons knows another man to be a Mason.  By not telling these secret things to non-Masons, it is a good way to know whether or not a man is really a Mason.

It is essentially certainly words and grips that identify us, and these - as well as some of the meanings of some of our words, that we keep secret.

This comes from the historic tradition of operative Masonry where stone Masons would not share the secrets of their trade with non-Masons.

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Dan

Past Master, Columbian Lodge A.F.&A.M. - Boston, MA
Senior Deacon, Friendship Lodge A.F.&A.M. - Wilmington, MA
32° Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, Valley of Boston
Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine, Aleppo Temple

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Posted: 09 October 2011 02:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]  
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Do you think that it is frustrating for the American people to know that the people they have elected into political office have taken a secret oath to an organization that the general public knows little about.  Couldn’t that be considered a possible conflict of interest?

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Posted: 09 October 2011 02:58 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]  
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mguiler - 09 October 2011 02:53 PM

Do you think that it is frustrating for the American people to know that the people they have elected into political office have taken a secret oath to an organization that the general public knows little about.  Couldn’t that be considered a possible conflict of interest?

No, not a conflict of interests, considering Freemasonry requires it’s members to obey the laws of the land in which they live.

Furthermore, you maybe be under the impression that Freemasonry is a Fraternity for high ranking officials or national politicians.  The last president who was a Mason was Ford, and only 13 presidents have been Freemasons.

It is part of our ritual that no obligation you take will interfere with the duty you owe to God, your country, your neighbor, or yourself.  If people are worried or concerned about the possible influence of Freemasons in public office, it is because they have never known a masons or actually understood Freemasonry.  We are not allowed to discuss politics in lodge, and we have no greater agenda except for our members to become better men and help others in the process.

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Dan

Past Master, Columbian Lodge A.F.&A.M. - Boston, MA
Senior Deacon, Friendship Lodge A.F.&A.M. - Wilmington, MA
32° Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, Valley of Boston
Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine, Aleppo Temple

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Posted: 09 October 2011 03:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]  
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Do the Masons have knowledge that they in part on members as they climb the degrees of the pyramid?

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Posted: 09 October 2011 03:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]  
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Dan Madore - 09 October 2011 02:58 PM
mguiler - 09 October 2011 02:53 PM

Do you think that it is frustrating for the American people to know that the people they have elected into political office have taken a secret oath to an organization that the general public knows little about.  Couldn’t that be considered a possible conflict of interest?

No, not a conflict of interests, considering Freemasonry requires it’s members to obey the laws of the land in which they live.

Furthermore, you maybe be under the impression that Freemasonry is a Fraternity for high ranking officials or national politicians.  The last president who was a Mason was Ford, and only 13 presidents have been Freemasons.

It is part of our ritual that no obligation you take will interfere with the duty you owe to God, your country, your neighbor, or yourself.  If people are worried or concerned about the possible influence of Freemasons in public office, it is because they have never known a masons or actually understood Freemasonry.  We are not allowed to discuss politics in lodge, and we have no greater agenda except for our members to become better men and help others in the process.


I can assure you that none of the secrets of Masonry would conflict with another person’s obligations to his work or to his country.  Also as Brother Dan has stated, discussion of politics is simply not allowed. 

Those that are members of the fraternity run the gamut from police officers, bartenders, car mechanics, and retirees.  I’d think that if the membership of high ranking officials was the only one that mattered, the rest of us wouldn’t be bothered with.

Also, between you and me… if I found out that a man running for office wasn’t a Mason but still had some good ideas… I’d probably still vote for him ;)

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Mike Kelly
Stevensville Lodge #28
EA 9/15/11

“My most brilliant achievement was my ability to be able to persuade my wife to marry me.”
-Winston Churchill

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