Order in Freemasonry

Order in Freemasonry

Order in Freemasonry is actually a pretty big thing. I say “actually” because many consider us to be just free thinkers and philosophizers, and thus they view Freemasons as anarchists, or “against the machine.” After all, a good many of our past brothers were involved in (or instigators of) some of History’s most famous uprisings. Take, for example, the Boston Tea Party. It has been held that the meetings leading up to the actual event were in a pub that served as a Masonic meeting place, and that the chief conspirators were Masons. What many do not realize, or fail to consider, is that Freemasons are also instrumental in instigating, or developing, a number of the institutions and inventions they take for granted and the order that is derived from them.

Back to the basics. We refer to our fraternity as an Order. The very definition of which is to bring about order, or to regulate. Regulate means to govern or direct according to rule. We are admonished to act as quiet and good citizens adhering to the dictates of our government, which many of our fraternity have done, and well, over the years. As a matter-of-fact, many freemasons are involved in government to further the agenda of order.

So, in what ways can we further the agenda of order in our daily routine? I’ve already touched on the concept of scheduling in our previous article. But what about Order in our personal dogma? Freemasonry is, after all, about making good men better.

Franklin Covey is a well-known self-help guru. He’s known all over the world for his formulas for organizing and assessing one’s life. If we are to believe in his success, the man knows what he’s talking about. As such, we can use his formulas to better further our desired result.

Franklin Covey suggests writing a personal mission statement. He believes that if you have a purpose—a defined purpose—in your life then you will be better capable of manifesting and achieving it. Purpose equals Order. Freemasonry should already provide you with a great foundation, and verbiage to use to construct your personal mission statement. But writing a mission statement isn’t going to result in a sudden transformation magically. You’ve got to read it daily and endeavor to practice the meat of it daily.

Another way (and a vital one I might add) to further order in your life is to perform a self-stress test on a regular basis. Stress is unhealthy and can cause distractions that lead to chaos in your life. Covey suggests performing a stress test on a regular basis to assess better where you are at.

Think about the way that you operate on a daily basis. Do you have outlined goals? Short range, mid, and long? Do you know where you are going in life and have a clear path? Can you achieve these goals without first applying the steps as mentioned above? Life is a constant battle between chaos and order. A person cannot merely trudge along through life, expect to be successful without taking charge and eking out a shelter of order amongst the chaos.

Here’s my challenge to you, brothers. Write out your personal mission statement and carry it with you. If you’re old tech, print and laminate it the size of a credit card and keep it in your wallet. If you’re new tech, then put it on your device where you are constantly reminded to read it. Maybe even set the alarm to remind you to read it each morning.

3 responses to “Order in Freemasonry”

  1. […] By: Ed Mortensen, Secretary There are politically correct ways to provide for leaders in an organization and there are less politically correct ways. The politically correct way is to have two leaders, a man, and a woman and have them share responsibilities.  Perhaps you are familiar with the way High School clubs are administered. There are a boy and a girl that share leadership responsibilities so they are more likely to adequately represent the student body.  This can work under the close supervision and leadership of a faculty adviser but tends to fail without this supervision. Masons use the less politically correct way by having just one leader and assistants.  That leader is the Worshipful Master and his assistants are the Senior and Junior Wardens. So if Freemasonry isn’t like a school club, what is it like?  Each Lodge is organized similarly to a corporation with the equivalency of a CEO, a COO, and other C-level positions.  The ultimate responsibility for the well-being of the organization rests with the CEO in a company as the good of the Lodge does with the Worshipful Master.  His assistants are assigned specific duties and it falls to the Master to be sure planning for the year happens and that the plan is properly executed. But, you may ask, Masonry is a club, isn’t it?  True, but we have learned from hundreds of years of practice that having one leader and one united direction works best for a Lodge. So are High Schools heading for disaster, well, in my humble opinion, yes.  Without the strong leadership of a faculty adviser (one leader), the club system in High Schools will almost certainly fail if two strong-willed leaders are in contention. Thus success, in this case, means the apathy of one leader and the strong leadership of the other or, the adviser acting as a referee. With one captain and one hand on the rudder, the ship steers true. […]

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  2. […] Order, in the sense that it is a force to be introduced into your life to improve your situation and better your establishment, is a conventional method of introduction to this concept. For this article, I’m going to reference our ancient and honorable fraternity in terms of being an order. The force of order to combat chaos is fundamental, as illustrated by Bro. Benjamin Franklin‘s placement of the virtue as third on his list. Instinctively, those of us within the order of Freemasonry, and those seeking to join are drawn to the fulfillment of this desire—this desire to be a part of order and away from chaos—and thus we joined Freemasonry. Ask any active brother what value they derive from their membership, and I’m sure you’ll receive a variety of answers, but those who understand Freemasonry will likely find some affinity with the quote by M.W. Bro. Harold Richardson of New York that we cited at the start of this article. […]

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  3. […] intend this to be the final article in the Virtue of Order series. Within this article, I’m going to expand Brother Franklin’s possible meaning to include […]

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