A Secret Society, Spilling a Few Secrets - New York Times
From NY Times...
For more than two centuries, the Freemasons and their grandiose rituals have played a secretive, mysterious role in American life. One of the Masons’ symbols looks a lot like the all-seeing eye on the back of every $1 bill. And look whose picture is on the other side.
George Washington was not the first Mason, and not the only famous one. Mozart worked thinly disguised touches of Masonry into operas. Fourteen presidents and everyone from the Rev. Norman Vincent Peale to the comedian Red Skelton belonged. Masons presided when the cornerstone was laid at the Statue of Liberty.
Wow! I don't know about you guys. But that is really cool. I always love hearing about these secret societies. Apparently this one does a whole lot of community service too. I wonder how they select their members.
54,000 in New York, down from a high of 346,413 in 1929. Membership rose again after World War II, rising to 307,323 in 1957 before beginning a long slide.
As Mr. Bidnick explains it, New York’s Masons are heavily involved in community service, underwriting medical research and supplying 29,000 American flags,one for every public school classroom in the city. But still there are the secret rooms where Masons gather.
Anyway....reading on....The Masons are giving tours of their New York Lodge and also recruiting members!
So people can see the gilded ceiling, the marble walls, the benches along the sides for the rank and file and, at either end, the thronelike chairs for high-ranking Masons. And, in a conference room next door, there is more gold, though it is only paint on a copy of a larger-than-life statue of George Washington.
The lodge also hired a public relations firm to spread the word about its 225th anniversary, which was last month. And the Masons have run advertisements in movie theaters and run one-day classes to award the first three Masonic degrees in a single session. Until then, would-be Masons had to spend months learning what they needed to know to rise from Entered Apprentice to Fellowcraft to Master Mason.
It's like World of Warcraft all over again. Another world that to play/work in. Master Mason. I wonder what they do besides this community service....I hope its not a cult or something.
If a Mason Master reads my blog, I hope he doesn't track me down and perform experiments on me or something.
Anyway, I am very intrigued by this society. Maybe I'll get that book which I have pictured above and learn more about it...
Anyone know anything about these folks?