Tuesday, December 25, 2012

A Masonic Merry Christmas.

With thoughts, prayers and rememberances for those serving overseas and those lost this winter, that won't be home with their Loved ones on this day.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

32° – Master of the Royal Secret

We had 32° practice tonight.   I have a small part.    In Japan, I always admired the Kabuki plays that rural villages would put on as amateur  productions.   In Japan, I wished we had such a tradition.   I had no idea that I would find an American tradition of archetypal plays in the Scottish Rite and am dumbfounded that I am actually playing a part in them.

       31° is my favorite, but the 32° is one of the close runners ups!    It will be performed tomorrow at the Minneapolis Valley Scottish Rite Temple.

 32° – Master of the Royal Secret
The lessons taught in this degree are that genuine brotherhood requires mutual regard, opinion, esteem and charity. We always look for the good in all, make allowances for others’ shortcomings. We trust the Supreme Architect to lead us to friendship, morality and brotherly love. The apron worn in this degree is white, lined in black, with a double-headed eagle and a plan of the Camp of the Princes. The jewel worn is a golden Teutonic Cross. In the center are the letters XXXII, surrounded by a green wreath. The cap of a Master of the Royal Secret is black silk with a black band trimmed in gold. In the center front is a double-headed eagle emblem with a rayed equilateral triangle above in gold. The triangle is red, has 32° in its center, and is trimmed with gold.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Minnesota's Most Famous Freemason, Honored Today

H.H. Humphrey was a member of Cataract #2, the  Masonic Lodge I belong to.

The 7-foot bronze statue of Humphrey — former Minneapolis mayor, U.S. senator and then vice president under President Lyndon Johnson — will be on the southwest side of the mall, and surrounded by gardens and granite inscribed with some of his "notable quotations."
Lessons from a happy warrior for social justice By Eric P. Schwartz | 07/25/12
 "As it happens, the dedication ceremony will occur shortly after the July 15 anniversary of then-Mayor Humphrey's appeal for civil rights at the 1948 Democratic National Convention. In that historic and courageous speech in Philadelphia, Humphrey successfully urged the Democrats to adopt a landmark civil-rights plank, calling on the Party to "get out of the shadow of states' rights and walk forthrightly into the bright sunshine of human rights."

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Not A Mason, But Appreciated Masonic Values: "built level and square by craftsmen who were honest in their bones."

by Robert A. Heinlein

Robert A. Heinlein wrote this item in 1952. His wife, Virginia Heinlein, chose to read it when she accepted NASA's Distinguished Public Service Medal on October 6, 1988, on the Grand Master's behalf (it was a posthumous award).

Mrs. Heinlein received a standing ovation.
      "I am not going to talk about religious beliefs but about matters so obvious that it has gone out of style to mention them. I believe in my neighbors. I know their faults, and I know that their virtues far outweigh their faults. "Take Father Michael down our road a piece. I'm not of his creed, but I know that goodness and charity and lovingkindness shine in his daily actions. I believe in Father Mike. If I'm in trouble, I'll go to him."

      "My next-door neighbor is a veterinary doctor. Doc will get out of bed after a hard day to help a stray cat. No fee--no prospect of a fee--I believe in Doc.

      "I believe in my townspeople. You can know on any door in our town saying, 'I'm hungry,' and you will be fed. Our town is no exception. I've found the same ready charity everywhere. But for the one who says, 'To heck with you - I got mine,' there are a hundred, a thousand who will say, "Sure, pal, sit down."

      "I know that despite all warnings against hitchhikers I can step up to the highway, thumb for a ride and in a few minutes a car or a truck will stop and someone will say, 'Climb in Mac - how far you going?'

      "I believe in my fellow citizens. Our headlines are splashed with crime yet for every criminal there are 10,000 honest, decent, kindly men. If it were not so, no child would live to grow up. Business could not go on from day to day. Decency is not news. It is buried in the obituaries, but is a force stronger than crime. I believe in the patient gallentry of nurses and the tedious sacrifices of teachers. I believe in the unseen and unending fight against desperate odds that goes on quietly in almost every home in the land.

      "I believe in the honest craft of workmen. Take a look around you. There never were enough bosses to check up on all that work. From Independence Hall to the Grand Coulee Dam, these things were built level and square by craftsmen who were honest in their bones.

      "I believe that almost all politicians are honest. . .there are hundreds of politicians, low paid or not paid at all, doing their level best without thanks or glory to make our system work. If this were not true we would never have gotten past the 13 colonies.

      "I believe in Rodger Young. You and I are free today because of endless unnamed heroes from Valley Forge to the Yalu River. I believe in -- I am proud to belong to -- the United States. Despite shortcomings from lynchings to bad faith in high places, our nation has had the most decent and kindly internal practices and foreign policies to be found anywhere in history.

      "And finally, I believe in my whole race. Yellow, white, black, red, brown. In the honesty, courage, intelligence, durability, and goodness of the overwhelming majority of my brothers and sisters everywhere on this planet. I am proud to be a human being. I believe that we have come this far by the skin of our teeth. That we always make it just by the skin of our teeth, but that we will always make it. Survive. Endure. I believe that this hairless embryo with the aching, oversize brain case and the opposable thumb, this animal barely up from the apes will endure. Will endure longer than his home planet -- will spread out to the stars and beyond, carrying with him his honesty and his insatiable curiosity, his unlimited courage and his noble essential decency.

      "This I believe with all my heart."

Saturday, May 26, 2012

More from Albert Pike: "The Nobelest of Use"

Lee's note:   I always like to be aware, that I stand directly in the center of all those people who came before me in the past and all of those who will come after me when I am gone.  This idea, in no way makes me feel small, but rather, impresses upon me the importance of my life as a bridge between all the past and infinite future.
"The noblest, if not indeed the only noble use, to which we can devote our strength, our energies, our faculties, our intellect, is to labour for the benefit of others, to instruct, to guide, to enrich with physical comforts, and moral healthfulness and intellectual wealth, the less favoured of our race; not alone our children, friends, neighbors, but those remote from us and even unknown to us; separated from us even by wide spaces of time yet unelapsed' to be born hereafter; to people this earth when we have leftit; to build teir habitations and their cities, and the monuments of their ancestors, upon our unknown graves....."

Thursday, May 24, 2012

New Officers, Cataract Lodge #2 AF & AM

Left To Right:  Lee Love (Tyler), Herb Berzelius, WB Dan Starks, Conrad Jackson (Worshipful Master), Ivan Smith (Junior Warden), WB Dave Wething (Senior Warden), WB Blake English (Chaplin), Scott Wood (Senior Steward), Kevin Schwab (Senior Deacon), Allan Jensen (Junior Steward), Dave Ott (Junior Deacon) and WB Terry Henthorn (Marshal).

I jumped right into the Freemasons a year and a half ago and was caught in open arms.   It has been a perfect addition to my life, giving me balance and an explained social life as a balance to my solitary work in the studio.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Albert Pike on Temperance.

"Luxury has been the chief cuase of the downfall of every Republic.  While simple, modest and frugal habits prevail, the fortresses of Freedom are impregnable..." --Albert Pike, Some Thoughts On The Nature And Purposes Of Freemasonry.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Funny handshakes and bizarre initiation ceremonies? Myths and the Freemasons | Manchester Evening News - menmedia.co.uk

Funny handshakes and bizarre initiation ceremonies? Myths and the Freemasons | Manchester Evening News - menmedia.co.uk: "Funny handshakes and bizarre initiation ceremonies? Myths and the Freemasons
David Henry
March 05, 2012
Grand Secretary of the Freemasons UK, Nigel Brown.
Grand Secretary of the Freemasons UK, Nigel Brown.
Funny handshakes, backhanders for businessmen and bizarre initiation ceremonies. What's the truth about the Freemasons? The brotherhood is stepping out of the shadows to tell us, as David Henry discovers.

Nigel Brown doesn’t seem like a man at the head of a sinister organisation that’s secretly controlling the world. With his impeccable manners, and perfectly normal handshake, he’s somewhat of a disappointment.

Nigel is the General Secretary of the Freemasons. “It’s sort of like being the chief executive officer,” he explains with a smile. His headmaster appearance - smart suit, shiny shoes, thinning hair - and benevolent bank manager persona is not matching expectations."

Read Full Article here: Funny handshakes and bizarre initiation ceremonies? Myths and the Freemasons | Manchester Evening News - menmedia.co.uk:

Friday, February 17, 2012

Freemasons emerge from shadows following quake - AJW by The Asahi Shimbun

Freemasons emerge from shadows following quake - AJW by The Asahi Shimbun:
"The Grand Lodge of Freemasons of Japan, depicted as a feared "secret society," is engaging in relief activities in areas afflicted by the Great East Japan Earthquake. Using donations collected from members worldwide, the Freemasons are delivering food and water to disaster-stricken areas, reconstructing a temple washed away in the tsunami and giving boats to fishermen who lost theirs in the tragic events of March 11."

Last Night At the Scottish Rite: 17thº and the 18º

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Thursday, January 19, 2012

Degrees of the Scottish Rite: 10° and 11°

These were the only degrees I missed when I went through them all.    I am happy I could make them up right away.    The message about values of freedom of religion and thought are basic values that formed our unique Country.   We need to get back to the Founders' basics if we don't want to be left in the dust of history before our time.

Degrees of the Scottish Rite:

10° - Elu of the Fifteen (Illustrious Elect of the Fifteen) This degree teaches us to be tolerant and respect the opinions of others. Freedoms of political and spiritual ideologies should be shared by all. The apron of the 10th Degree is white, with a black flap with three arch-shaped gates, over each a head on a spike. The jewel of this degree is a dagger as in the 9th Degree. The duties are enlightenment of soul and mind, vigilance, tolerance and being on guard for fanaticism and persecution.

11° - Elu of the Twelve (Sublime Knight Elect of the Twelve) This degree teaches sympathy. We should be compassionate to our brother Masons and to all mankind as well. The apron of the 11th Degree is white, lined with black, with a flaming heart in the center. The jewel is a dagger suspended from a black cordon inscribed with the words "Vincere aut Mori" the pledge "that you will rather die than betray the cause of the people, or be overcome through your own fear or fault". The duties are to be earnest, true, reliable and champion of the people.

China's Three Great Religions and their Teachers

As China become more affluent, My hope is that it returns to its heritage and great traditions. It will help free their people and the occupied minorities.

China's Three Great Religions and their Teachers:

 " Albert Pike, has said in his Morals and Dogma (page 277) about Buddha and Confucius. According to him, Buddha was "the first Masonic Legislator whose memory is preserved to us by history," and he "called to the

Priesthood all men, without distinction of caste, who felt themselves inspired by God to instruct men." He declared (pages 277 and 278 ) that this Buddhist Priesthood "recognized the existence of a single uncreated God, in whose bosom everything grows, is developed and transformed," and the "worship of this God reposed upon the obedience of all the beings He created."

"According to Albert Pike (page 616), Confucius "forbade making images or representations of the Deity. He attached no idea of personality to Him; but considered Him as a Power or Principle, pervading all Nature." The doctrine of Confucius, according to Pike (page 169), was stated in the Chinese Ethics as being "simple, and easy to be understood," consisting "solely in being upright of heart, and loving our neighbour as we love ourself."

Sunday, January 8, 2012