“A peculiar system of morality, veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols.”
From: Questions leading to the Second Degree
That’s what it is … no really. Not very helpful though is it?
As the saying goes, it is also what you make of it. Each week, Freemasons assemble in Lodges all over the country to hold formal meetings or informal rehearsals. The formal meetings are followed by a meal, toasts and responses.
Yes, you’ve got it, obviously, it’s a dining club.
And yet …….. if I tilt my head just so, I can just about hear you asking.
“Why does a dining club need a rehearsal night”? Good question!
We are a fraternal organisation, pledged to self-improvement, fellowship and becoming better men. We do this partly by supporting our local communities and helping others, not just other Freemasons. Some say we are a religion, we are not. Others say we are a charity, not true either but we do raise huge amounts for charitable purposes. Really huge amounts.
The reason we hold rehearsal nights is because we are trying to improve ourselves and this improvement stems from progression through the three degrees of Craft Freemasonry and applying the principles from them to how we live our lives and interact with others. These ceremonies or degrees take a new member from Initiation, through to the Fellowcraft level, finally to become a Master Mason and receive “The Third Degree”.
We are a bunch of blokes, friends if you like, who get together regularly, try and improve ourselves as people, raise money for charity and usually end up having a meal and a few drinks. Really, what else do you need to know?