What is a Freemason's duty?

by jackie

what is a Freemasons duty?

Note from Tim:

When I first came across this question I started to give it a pass. It seemed too brief and so simple a question. But then I remembered, no one speaks for Freemasonry; we all interpret things in different ways, and no two people think exactly the same. I began to examine my own perspective on my duties as a Freemason and wondered how it might differ from the perspective of others.

Are our duties contained within the Charges we receive with each degree? Is our duty fulfilled by earnestly striving, even unsuccessfully, to live our lives according to the moral obligations we take upon ourselves as Freemasons? Is it more complicated than that? Can the duties of a Freemason be enumerated? Delineated? Should they be? Can they be properly communicated, or can they only be experienced by the heart and consciousness like true Masonic secrets?

I'm interested in your perspective on the duties of a Freemason.

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Jan 29, 2015
Oh, my..
by: Lant

It's a bit of a koan, isn't it?

I would think that our duty is indeed spelled out in the three charges and those things are certainly explicit and reducible to words - obey the laws of the nation you are living in, be honest and upright in behaviour, be generous and benevolent to all, honour God as you perceive that Being to be, learn more about the Craft on a regular basis, do what is right for the sole reason that it is right and so forth.

Those are however, I think, just the skeleton on which we can start to build. Perhaps another way of stating it is that they are the rules of the road all new drivers are required to learn and one cannot drive (at least not for long) without knowing them. Yet by themselves they are not enough. Experience in using those rules is absolutely necessary to be a good driver. Moreover, once a driver has that experience, he is not going to need to constantly think about them; they will have become part of his character, so to speak, things to be done automatically, without having to remember.

The book aim of Masonry is to make good men better. By using those specifics in the charges, we grow to see how we can indeed better our characters and, in the process, the world around us. If even one man follows that path, then to some extent, however small, the universe is made a better place.

Does that make any sense?

Jan 29, 2015
by: Fred

This is a good one, and both you and Lant are dead on.
Freemasonry is what it is to each of us. It's different for each mason.
Nice job guys

Mar 02, 2015
The unconscious competence of Freemasonry
by: Tim

Thank you Fred, I'm glad you like this one. It is something to ponder and hopefully we'll hear from other brethren, as well.

And, thank you Lant for your considered thoughts on the subject. It is a bit of a koan, isn't it? Yes, your analogy of driving makes excellent sense. In fact, in looking back over my years as a Mason I can see that that's exactly how it was for me. I wasn't a bad guy before I became a Mason, but in earnestly striving to follow the moral teachings of Freemasonry I have become more naturally inclined to make the moral choice and to take a charitable position.

Thanks for your input Brothers. It's a true pleasure to make your acquaintance.



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