5 Reasons Why (Most) Blogs About Freemasonry Suck

Most Masonic blogs leave much to be desired. This isn’t a bold statement; most blogs suck. Some will say that this one does too. That’s fine. A wise woman once said, “…the haters gonna hate hate hate. But why are they so reliably bad? I can think of a few possible reasons. 

  1. Ahead of their time – a lot of our brethren are old. How many brothers in your Lodge have AOL or Roadrunner email addresses? Maybe all of our good writers aren’t good with WordPress. Maybe it will change with time. This is being kind though. I suspect most of the reasons fall under the following category…
  2. They’re Boring – there’s no getting around this one. What to write about? “My Masonic Journey.” Please. If you put it out there for everyone to read, it should be more than just a diary of how you felt after your degree or being installed as Jr. Steward for the first time. Talk to me about the Craft. How have you applied your lessons? 
  3. Politically correct – file under boring. But also dangerous to the vitality of the Craft. I hope to change all this. No topic is taboo here, and I don’t mind shining lights in those darkened corners where we have allowed, by misguided, benign neglect, insalubrious attitudes and factions to flourish. 
  4. Virtue signaling – that is, an obsession with showing the world how wonderful we are. We’re so tolerant, so righteous. George Washington was a Mason, you know. You want us to throw our brethren in flyover country under the bus? Okay! As long as you don’t call us bigots! Want us to waste spend our money on politically-driven public schools? Sure! We will even talk about how a free public education is the basis for everything we hold dear!       S-M-R-T. It’s amazing Washington has survived. He owned slaves you know. He probably would have discriminated against gays too. 
  1. No RealTalk – rarely will you find a Masonic blog that has anything worth saying (until this one). Just the facts; nothing more. A Masonic aggregator. It’s like they set out to be the Masonic version of Drudge, without the catchy headlines. Then some drive-by commenter throws out something unMasonic sounding, and the the hands get to wringing! Friday night fun! Gawd – ask your wife to service you. 

What to do about it?

This, the Last Redoubt of what I like to think of as traditional Freemasonry in California, will

  • Always cast a critical and reactionary eye upon our betters in the Grand Lodge cabal. 
  • Work to sound the alarm on ONOB, for more and more Lodges are falling to them. 
  • Call out Masons who cower before the shrieking mobs of SJWs, who will never be appeased. Remember brother: you’re too old, straight and white for the New World being built here in California. 
  • Offer our advice on moving the pendulum back, not in a folksy- racist way. I live in a city too; I’m not a hick. But we will no longer swallow the poison pill that teaches (and is not Monitorial) that to be a good and tolerant Mason, you must accept invasion of your country and the subversion of your Nation. America is not its  government, and the State is not the Nation. 
  • Never accept that meeting on the level means never favoring one culture over another. We will not remove Shakespeare from the classroom of life to make way for savagery. 
  • Connect the dots between Masonry and its lingering allegiance to Progressivism, which, despite Steve Doan’s belief that it has been a tool for good, has been the source of even greater evil. 

So we will press on, at least until the last Lodged is fully converged to the message of Social Justice. Then I might find something better to do. Know when to hold ’em; know when to fold ’em. 

Grand Master of California Bows to SJWs

So the Grand Master did this 6 weeks ago. We’re a little late.

Always eager to demonstrate how right-thinking and Progressive we are, GM M. David Perry, likely with much input from the executive committee, has wrung a self-righteous hand at our brethren in Tennessee and Georgia.

As a result of the suspension of recognition of The Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of the State of Georgia and the Grand Lodge of Tennessee F. & A. M., a Georgia or Tennessee Mason may not attend a tiled meeting of a California Lodge, and a California Mason may not attend a tiled meeting of a lodge under the jurisdiction of one of these two Grand Lodges.

What do you think our Persian brothers would do with a homosexual applicant to a lodge chartered by the Grand Lodge of Iran in exile?

How about African Masons?

Do you think that these Masons, raised by non-Westrons, should reflect our liberal, Western values? And if they instead cling to values held by American Masons as recently as 20 years ago, will we disown them?

The Grand Lodge of California must not apologize for anything done by our brothers outside of California. But it must bow to the alter of political correctness. It is a converged institution. What is that? Why, dear brother, have you not read SJWs Always Lie?

The Saints de-Canonized 

Past Grand Master Nagel, who is a true leader of men, if not always a popular one (one cannot often be both), used to say something about it being a great time to be a Mason.  He is right, but perhaps not in the way he intended. These are certainly interesting times.

Your Grand Lodge is currently trying to figure out how to square openness and inclusivity with the numerous Biblical references. This will reach its zenith at Annual Communication.  This arose after our GM exercised his privilege to recommend a change in the law. No doubt he has the highest ideals of equality and inclusiveness when he recommended that we excise any mention of the Holy Bible from our ceremonies and instead adopt the term Holy Writings. One wonders how the lecture of the third degree will sound afterward. Much shorter perhaps.

But this is a troublesome task, for there are so many references to strike. One of the greatest examples: we are reliably informed that some of the saints, who are described as being patrons of our Craft, are included in our teachings by virtue of their eminent patronage, rather than for the deeds which lead to their original canonization.


We are tying ourselves in knots, and I fear that once so tied, those bonds will be hard to break. When the GL goes around spouting revised history, it is similar to the way in which we are told that a man is really a woman, Y chromosomes notwithstanding. Black is white, war is peace, slavery is freedom. But you know the Truth; it is a divine attribute they say. Do you believe that there are certain universal truths? Steer clear of these liars. Eventually Solomon himself will be found to be too ethnocentric for our Lodges. After all, he is mentioned in only three(?) holy works. That doesn’t sound inclusive at all.

And when our beautiful ritual is rewritten for the sake of political correctness, will there be anything special remaining?

Suicide by Virtue-Signaling

If this is not your first visit to MR, you are doubtless already aware that we are here to express concerns about the unfortunate and reflexive tendency of modern Masons to bend to common leftist narratives, mostly revolving around abstractions such as tolerance and equality. 
Regrettably, equality does not exist, unless we are equal before the law. But everyone equally capable? Rubbish. Tolerance does exist, but we do not think it means what you think it means.
The Founders of my country were quite explicit that they established their government to secure the blessings of liberty for themselves and their posterity, not for the poor and wretched the world over. That was a Gallic trick, from which we have yet to fully recover. But the good news is we are finally beginning to recover, and Masonic Reaction is here to spread the news to our brethren of the new, Alternative Right. The Neoreactionary Right. The purpose is not to exclude, but to appreciate the subtleties that differentiate the classical understanding of tolerance within an English, Christian nation, and the modern, Progressive notion that being tolerant denies the existence of a common stock, a shared language, and shared traditions or that the preceding exist only inasmuch as they are enforced through racism and oppression.  

We are here to remind our brothers that this land is more than an idea; it is a nation, forged and tempered from the nations of Europe, but in the English mold. While we have allowed others to join us in the past, we owe no debt payable by allowing further immigration, which would further divide us. It is enough to note that immigration in the last 50 years has given us 50 million foreigners. The next time someone says to you we must allow more foreigners to live here, ask them why? Do we owe someone? Do they have a right to live here? 

Allowing such large scale immigration is not particularly American.

Allowing it is not particularly Masonic. 

It is suicide. Germany is experiencing this now. Watch as the Saxon begins to hate. 

Being tolerant is not the same thing as allowing vast hordes into your neighborhood, city, county or state. 

My duty to my country guides my thinking here. I am a steward of this nation. It is not mine to give away. Nor is it American to do so. It is my duty to preserve the blessings of liberty for myself, my countrymen, and our posterity. Not for Russians, Mexicans or Syrians. How do we square this patriotic duty with our Masonic teachings?

If I meet a Syrian man in Lodge, I greet him as a friend and brother. I do not, however, work to settle thousands (or even hundreds) of refugees from Syria in America, my home country. Neither do I passively watch as these things are done. This is an important distinction. We can simultaneously be accepting of a brother, while politely declining his extended family and friends residency in our nation. But how? Isn’t America a “nation of immigrants”? Sure it is.

Even if true, does that mean that we must always, at all times, continue to bring in more and more people? In a word, no. How to keep them out though?

Let’s discuss property rights for a moment. This concept is well established in our law. Any person may morally and legally bar anyone from entering his home, at any time and for any reason. This is an individual right. Similarly, a group of individuals who own adjacent properties or homes may do the same, restricting entry to any and all. Admittedly, this sort of explicit covenant agreement is less recognized today. But the theory holds up; a group of individual landowners come together and decide that only certain persons are welcome on that land. 

The people in power, whether Democrat or Republican (except Trump) disagree. If you disagree with them, or their agenda of Third World Uber Alles, you are a hater, a bigot, and they will destroy you if they can. 

Why then cannot a larger group of people decide the same for their town, state or (distinct from state) nation? Where is the line drawn? Most Americans are solid on the concept of private property, but where do we draw the line between an individual’s right to his property and the community’s rights to the same? Do Americans have a collective right (ownership, in other words) to these United States? Your answer to that question is very important, and it likely informs your worldview. 

Examine this belief. Where does it come from? Whether you admit it or not, you would not want to live in a neighborhood full of Somalis or Syrians. Ponder this, my brother. Where does it lead you?

The New Cardinal Virtues

This is our first encounter with  Edward Feser, but he will likely become a regular read. 

My brother – do you remember your four Cardinal Virtues, described by Masons as Wisdom, Fortitude, Prudence and Justice? We hear a lot of talk lately, particularly out of the Grand Lodge, about Tolerance, and it seems to eclipse everything else? Do these new “virtues,” when uncontrolled, reveal a disordered mind? If we ever need to update the ritual (aside from removing references to the Holy Bible, which is about “inclusiveness”) Feser should write it. It is well worth you time. 

Assimilation

Vox Day has a pair of posts that should interest the contemplative Mason. We will divide them into two posts as well, mostly because the second is a re-post. We will link the original. 

Day often refers to the “Magic Dirt Theory,” which is the belief that good, old fashioned American values are magically transferred to foreigners when they land on our shores. It seems it isn’t working, at least as it relates to the right to bear arms. Read the whole thing. 

Resolution 15-09: the countdown begins

The Grand Lodge convened yesterday, don’t you know.  It’s always good to be back.  It’s Annual Communication and time for the GL members to vote on all the good things they want to do for the Constituent Lodges. 

We here at MR have long been of the opinion that the GL ought to be frequently reminded that it is the creation of the Lodges, and not the other way around. 

  
Normally the GL occupies itself with dull, yet necessary things like clearing up the Code.  This is also the time when our Grand Progressive brethren occasionally float a trial balloon, to see just how Progressive (or Reactionary) the rest of the brethren are.  This year does not disappoint!  For they have proposed a step toward making the Lodge more inclusive by doing away with…the Holy Bible.  

RESOLUTION NO. 15-09: ELIMINATES REQUIREMENT TO HAVE HOLY BIBLE ON THE ALTAR IN ADDITION TO THE CANDIDATE’S HOLY BOOK OF CHOICE

To the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge, F. & A. M. of California:
WHEREAS, Freemasonry is open to men of all religions, so long as they express a belief in a Supreme Being and the Immortality of the soul; and
WHEREAS, Section 402.060, Paragraph E of the California Masonic Code requires that if a candidate takes his obligation on a sacred book other than the Holy Bible, a small Holy Bible must also be present upon the altar; and…
WHEREAS, requiring the presence of the Holy Bible in addition to a candidate’s choice of sacred book implies the superiority of the Holy Bible over the candidate’s chosen book, an implication incompatible with the universality of Freemasonry.

Along with this, our own Grand Master, MW Russ Charvonia, has recommended a thorough scrubbing of the ritual, removing specific references to the Bible.  He has shown himself to be an Entryist. Too bad; I really do like the guy.  But there is a difference in admitting a foreigner, allowing his book to share the alter with yours, and removing yours to make him feel more welcome.  I’m sure MW supports #openbordersforIsrael too. 
My brothers, whatever America may be today, it was founded by English Christians, for English Christians. All of our Lodges trace their ancestry to the GL of England. There is a place where the Torah is the only book on the alter; it is called Israel. A lodge in Turkey most likely adorns their alter with the Quran. In America, the Bible belongs on the alter. 

This is the political correctness that infects our Grand Lodge.  A brother commented today that he thought both would pass with supermajorities. My guess is more than a few brothers will voice support, but will secretly vote no.  A few years back, when Californians had had enough of paying for the upkeep of their Nuevo Americanos and passed prop 187, the exit polls predicted a sound defeat. When the votes were counted, it had passed 2-1.  We will find out tomorrow. 

Levantine Refugees, Pathological Altruism and the Earl of Grantham

In one of the early episodes of Downton Abbey, there is a scene in which Robert, Earl of Grantham, explains to his daughter Mary that his estate and fortune cannot pass to her.  The complex legal arrangements, combined with the fortune from Cora (Robert’s wife and Mary’s mother) that had saved the (bankrupt) estate, and the tradition of the inheritance going to the eldest male successor, prevented him from naming Mary as his successor.

Those details aside, what gives us a glimpse into his character is how he is torn between his love for his daughter and his duty to both his forebears and his descendants.  He explains that he is a steward, not an owner (though he is the legal owner of the estate).  He has a duty to pass on the estate, in its entirety, to the next Earl of Grantham.   British law, at that time, was a bit biased in favor of the preservation of the aristocracy and those great estates.  Despite a century of Progressivism, California Masonic Law is similar, favoring the status quo over new and barbarous innovations.  If his Lordship were to divest Cora’s money and give it to Mary, the estate would surely fall.  Giving in to his compassion would be the death knell for all that his forbears had worked for.  Men and Masons in the West find themselves in a similar role now.

Actually we can’t do what we like with this country. We inherited it from our parents and grandparents and we have a duty to hand it on to our children and grandchildren, preferably improved and certainly undamaged.It is one of the heaviest responsibilities we will ever have. We cannot just give it away to complete strangers on an impulse because it makes us feel good about ourselves.

This quote is from Peter Hitchens, and it pertains to the invasion refugee crisis in Europe.  His audience is mainstream Britons.  But there is a lesson here for us as well my brothers.

Hitchens points out, though he does not use these words, the pathological altruism that infects many of our fellows in the West.  Guilt driven by our affluence drives us to give away our inheritance.  Resting upon our laurels, we feel very high and noble, yet if we would only raise our eyes to the distance, we would see that the estate will not last.  Continuing on this course is a dereliction of our duty to pass on to our posterity the results of our forefathers’ work and sacrifice.

But tell that to Finland’s PM, who has offered his neighbors some new “Finns” to make their community more vibrant.  How many refugees can Finland accommodate?  A better question may be: how many refugees can Finland accept while remaining predominately Finnish?  How about Europe?  How about America?  It isn’t just Mexico these days supplying us with all the new “Americans.”  Why do you think the ONOB phenomenon exists?

We at MR have no doubt that the brethren have a great deal of sympathy for these refugees.  We do too.  But we also don’t take issue with delineating very clear and rigid lines when it comes to which foreigners we welcome, and how many.  I fear that many of our fellow Westrons tend to feel first and think later.  Masons are particularly susceptible to this sort of thing.  We like to pat ourselves on the back for our tolerance, even as we avert our eyes to the consequences of leaving the door wide open.  American Masons are even more prone to this pathological altruism, since we have each been taught, since elementary school that we are the “melting pot,” and that it is right and just and proper that any oppressed person (and all of his extended family) should be admitted.

But do we have an obligation to admit anyone?  Think on this for a minute.  We doubt anyone has ever posed this question to you.  Do we, as Americans, have a duty to admit and accept any foreign person (legally or not)?  If you answer “yes,” whence came this obligation?  We cannot find it in the Constitution.  If it does not exist, why do agents of the government, reporters and academics all start from this premise?

The well-read Mason will likely have encountered related questions, if not the one just posed.  If there are now in excess of 10 million Mexican nationals (probably far more since MR does not recognize the children of foreigners as citizens), and 100 million more would like to come, is that a problem?  This thought experiment always ends the same way.  Eventually we reach a number of proposed “new Americans” that even the most left-wing, Cheap Chalupas type will ultimately agree is too high.  But they will only admit that when pressed into the corner.  Your job, secret NeoReactionary Mason that you are, is to point this out when you can, until the cognitive dissonance heats up enough that your brothers feel the burn (just a little).

The meaning of all this, my brothers, is that there comes a point at which your lodge will no longer be your lodge.  When your city will no longer be your city.  When your nation will no longer be your nation.  Listen to his Lorship, Robert, Earl of Grantham.  You are a steward of this nation, not an owner.  It was bequeathed to you by your fathers, that you might enjoy its blessings, and in turn, pass them on to your children.  You may not give it away, and you may not burn it down.  So it is with your Lodge.  Culture matters brethren.  Act only from altruism, and the estate will fall.

Provident Three Pillars #609 and Entryism

After a long break, we are back.  We will take a break from our ceremonial and well-deserved thumping of MW Doan to mourn the passing of some of our old lodges.  A friend of MR and brother in the Sacramento region recently informed us that the members of a well-established lodge in a nearby town recently voted to surrender their charter.  We also heard recently that the lodge in Patterson, CA (#488) was considering the same.  We are told, but cannot confirm, that both lodges are flush with cash.  Meanwhile, the membership of Valley Lodge #135 is booming.  Valley #135 is in Linden, CA (pop. <10,000; think Charming if you’re a fan of Sons of Anarchy).  Patterson seems to lack for members.  They should consolidate.  They should not surrender their charter (and their money) to the Grand Lodge (which, my brothers, is what happens when a Lodge surrenders the charter – a story for another day).

What killed Provident #609? Why is #135 booming? In a word, Entryism.

This is not a new concept; we have borrowed it from others.  But it is not in common conversation.  In short, it describes the tendency of subversive groups to play nice when first introduced, until they achieve dominance and take control.  Then the Entryists begin to implement their agenda, whether feminist, SJW, political or tribal.  You can see the results of Entryism in old clubs that change their rules to include women.  You can see this when people with a political agenda begin to influence organizations, bringing their political agendas with them.  This describes Our Newly Obligated Brothers (ONOB) perfectly.  The factions within #609 finally got tired of the standoff, and they mutually agreed to burn it down to keep the other from getting the prize.  Valley #135 will soon find themselves in a similar position as #609, which is a standoff between the old guard and the new faction.  It is as foreseeable as it is avoidable.  Hopefully they too will kill it, rather than surrender to the Entryists.  Here comes the worst part:

The Grand Lodge is well aware of what is happening.  They are watching, but they can’t do anything.  They are constrained by:

  1. A belief in “equality,” which they interpret as sameness (and not as equal in God’s eyes).
  2. A belief that simply living in America will be enough for foreigners to eschew tribal/racial politics.
  3. A belief that failing to believe 1 and 2 makes them racist.

But this began as a lament. A moment of silence for the lost lodge.

Ends vs. Means vs. Motives; Natural Rights vs. R. Stephen Doan

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Today we continue our examination of Most Worshipful Doan’s enthusiasm for Masonry’s wholehearted embrace of Progressivism. I should note that Doan is not alone here. He is merely the messenger. Many brothers share his view, even if not with the same historical and intellectual vigor. And why not? Everyone is Progressive these days, though most don’t know their own history; it was simply handed to them. All good people believe these things, after all. Most Republicans and Democrats would agree with Doan.

And what is wrong with public education? Or equal opportunity? Universal healthcare? All of these wonderful things for which Progressives like Doan so fervently advocate?

My objections are moral ones. I object to these things being provided through the use of force, and force is exactly how they are provided. But what is the alternative? For that we must look to the past. A brief overview on the topic of rights is in order.

Positive and negative rights

These days we hear about “rights” to everything: health care, education, a mortgage, etc. Classical Liberals – these days called libertarians in America – talk a lot about rights. John Locke, an inspiration to many of our Founding Fathers, did too, but in a different way. You may never have heard the term “Negative Rights,” or Natural Rights (from Lockean Natural Law), but in a nutshell, these are protections you have from others. Life, liberty and property. They exist independently of any ruler or government. The only obligation is to refrain from acting against another person’s life, liberty or property. Refrain=negative.

When you claim a “right” to education, medicine, welfare, etc., you are placing a (positive) demand on another person: someone must treat me, someone must teach me, someone must give me money. Positive=obligation. So-called rights such as these have no place in our Constitution and no place in Masonry, or in a Masonic publication.

Ends: does it work? Means: is it moral? Intent: are my motives pure?

Good intentions don’t matter. We briefly touched on the ends vs. means test in the last post. Allow me to quote myself (Rand would approve):

Nor is there consideration of the ends vs. the means. This is unsurprising and deliberate, for Progressive policies routinely fail both the ends test and the means test. In other words, the problem we set out to solve isn’t fixed, and the means were immoral, but hey, our motives were pure! For Progressives, the (hoped for) ends always trump the means, and we are encouraged to ignore what Bastiat called “that which is not seen” (meaning the unseen consequences of these policies).

But your motives don’t matter. Intent matters in determining whether someone has committed a crime; it is not a basis for good social policy, particularly when that policy is proved to be ineffectual. Why then is the Craft so committed to Progressive ideals, rather than simple charity?

Of course, the teachings of Masonry leave much for the individual Mason to contemplate for himself. Doan is not alone in seeing his own Progressive values reflected in Masonry. I often see some of my anti-Progressive values as well. The question, dear reader, is whose interpretation do you think is closer to reality? Reality will always outsmart ideology in the end. A century of Progressive policies is slowly coming to a close, as it comes home to us that all of those policies (despite the ideals behind them), education as the great panacea, stealing wealth from some for the benefit of others and forcibly leveling society, have not worked, and in many cases have exacerbated the original problems.

Doanian Rights

Doan goes further still, and with all the skill of a Supreme Court Justice “discovering” some heretofore unknown right in the Constitution, gives to us some new dimensions of Masonic teachings. As you read, ask yourself, “is it within the power of one man to make innovations in Masonry?”

The right to improve yourself – I have never heard of this in any philosophy including Masonry. We will call this a Doanism. I hear in our lessons a moral obligation to improve ourselves, to constantly chip away at our own rough ashlars, but nothing about rights. Doan is blending these related, but distinct concepts. If you must have a “right” to improve yourself, it stands to reason that someone has denied you improvement (probably by failing to provide public schools – what else can this mean?). We can only hope to hear more on this groundbreaking topic as the Doanian corpus is more fully developed.

Next up: equality. Is the ideal of “equality” the same thing as “equality of opportunity”?

Don’t equivocate. Yes or no?

Are they related? To a degree. Are they the same? No. It is not the same thing to 1) acknowledge another as equally deserving of the dignity as a child of God, and 2) crafting means of ensuring that A has the exact same opportunity as B. Do you see the difference here? Can you point me to the Masonic lessons on equality of opportunity? I may have missed them.

Equality of opportunity vs equality of outcome

Equal opportunity sounds great, but it didn’t work as intended, so further measures were needed by our Social Planners (who probably agree with Doan on most things). What they really want is equality of outcome, though they never admit this. Progressive, almost punitive tax rates, forced bussing of school kids, racial quotas or handicaps on college admissions, keeping a smart kid in class with the below average, handouts to the able who choose not to work, favoring immigrant children over your native-born son or daughter, and refusing to clean up our streets are all the result of our attempts to guarantee outcomes for all.

Why is this important?

Masonry is important to me. It is an institution that was influential in America’s founding. Yet, so much of that original America has been lost. This is not about immigration, though that hasn’t helped. This is about Masons jumping on the bandwagon of Progressivism, when there is no need. We can still be a force for good without supplicating to the State.

Masons support education. That’s a good thing. But public education is poor, and it is not because we don’t spend enough money on it (spending has risen five-fold (when adjusted for inflation) in 60 years. Something isn’t working. Why do we prop up a failing system? Why not redesign the system?

Masons teach equality, but only the Classical Liberal equality before the law. Equality of ability? Rubbish. Equality of Opportunity? Impossible in a free society. Equality of outcome? Take a guess.

In the end

We must cultivate a culture that encourages charity – not theft from the capable to the incapable – but true charity as taught by Masonry. Stay tuned; Most Worshipful Doan is against immigration!