On The Level Podcast

Interview with R∴ W∴ Douglas Dobbs: Crafting the Future of Freemasonry with Visionary Leadership

January 27, 2024 Christopher Burns Season 2 Episode 9
On The Level Podcast
Interview with R∴ W∴ Douglas Dobbs: Crafting the Future of Freemasonry with Visionary Leadership
On The Level Podcast
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Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Embark on a journey of Masonic discovery where symbolism and life lessons intertwine, as we recount our invigorating experience at the Master Mason Association in District 23. With the wisdom of Right Worshipful Doug Dobbs as our guiding star, we moved past scripted presentations to embrace the raw power of unscripted dialogue, unveiling the deeper meanings behind the three roughians and celebrating Sarasota Lodge's achievements. Our conversation seamlessly weaves through the threads of personal development, challenging you to expand your Masonic horizons and apply these enriching lessons to your daily life.

Leadership within Freemasonry isn't just about guiding meetings; it's about shaping the future of our brotherhood, a vision passionately communicated by our guest speaker. As we dissected his fervent call to action for long-term planning, we navigated the complex landscape of Masonic care, pondering the transition from traditional facilities to at-home care models. This episode also marks the birth of 'Three Ruffians' premium cigars—a venture brimming with narrative and Masonic symbolism, promising a taste of luxury intertwined with the rich heritage of our craft.

Delving into the profound, we sift through the esoteric nuances of Freemasonry, exploring the tenets of resurrection and integrity symbolized by the all-seeing eye. My personal transformation, from a literal creationist to a seeker of empirical truths, underscores the podcast's celebration of open-mindedness and evolving beliefs. As we wrap up our Master Mason journey and look ahead to our tech odyssey at Grand Lodge, we invite you to join us on this quest, where knowledge, enlightenment, and balance take center stage in our Masonic and personal lives.

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Speaker 1:

Hey, chris, yeah, fred, what's a Mason?

Speaker 2:

That's a really good question, fred.

Speaker 1:

You've reached the internet's home for all things masonry. Join Chris and I as we plumb the depths of our ancient craft, from the common gavel to the trowel. Nothing is off the table, so grab your tools and let's get to work. This is on the level. Well, here we are again, chris. What are we doing today, the day before Grand Lodge?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, the day before Grand Lodge we're, I think we're going to talk more about the master masonry.

Speaker 1:

Say it isn't. So I think so, I think we are, so you're saying it is so.

Speaker 2:

Make it so.

Speaker 1:

Is this going to be number 10? 9.

Speaker 2:

9? 9 hours on the master masonry, 9 hours on master mason, and we have not scratched the surface. Right. And then last night at our master mason association in district 23 we did the district school of instruction for right worshipful Doug Dobbs. At his last meeting he asked us to do the education, so I think that was the first in our district. I've been going to those school of instructions for like five years and it's usually about you know, this is how you stand, this is how you walk.

Speaker 1:

Right. Is that how you hold the words?

Speaker 2:

But for the first time we talked about the master masonry. What does it mean? The roughians? How does that relate to?

Speaker 1:

our lives. Yeah, so we, we, we focused in on the, the section in the mentors manual on the three roughians, and I learned something big time. I decided to do a little outline and kind of go outside the manual and you know that was a disaster.

Speaker 2:

It wasn't a disaster, but it was.

Speaker 1:

It was a disaster. Let's go ahead and say it taught us some valuable lessons. Word of the day disaster.

Speaker 2:

It was disastrous.

Speaker 1:

And it's. It was so, not me. I quickly realized, as I was reading reading from a prewritten script, which is something we don't do, right? I quickly realized, by the look on everyone's faces and my own the the feeling that I had, that this was a mistake. So we sat down in two chairs, we pulled out the mentors manual and Chris and I just did what we do here, yeah, in front of an audience, and the crowd came alive and started participating and sharing. So keep it simple, stupid right. Keep it super simple.

Speaker 2:

I don't ever add sorry, stupid kiss, super, super simple.

Speaker 1:

There's no stupid kiss right, because stupid is complicated. So that's really an oxymoron. Keep it simple. Keep it super simple, keep it stupid, you stupid complicated weirdo. I've always done it the way Zig Ziglar, who originally came up with the idea. It's keep it super simple. Kiss, keep it super simple. It's not keep it simple, stupid. Yeah, that's how I learned it because as soon as you call someone stupid, you complicate things. So yeah it's not simple anymore. You just called me stupid.

Speaker 2:

Well, I'm not stupid, you're stupid.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, you're stupid. So if you keep it on a positive level, keep it super simple. By sitting down, chris and I next to each other with the manual in our hands and reading from it, commenting on it based on our own life experiences and our knowledge of Freemasonry, the crowd came alive, men began to share, and I thought it was a really great moment.

Speaker 2:

Yeah. It really really turned out well, yeah, yeah. I mean, I kind of instinctively knew when we were going through that that it wasn't going to work for me.

Speaker 1:

I totally agree, you know for me.

Speaker 2:

I didn't know how you felt in the moment.

Speaker 1:

Totally with you.

Speaker 2:

You were like Chris, take your turn on the script.

Speaker 1:

And I was like no, I don't think so. I think I'm going to do something else, no, no, what I was really saying is Chris, bail me out, I'm dying. Yeah, no, I know I do it all the time when we're recording.

Speaker 2:

I just look up at you like.

Speaker 1:

Talk.

Speaker 2:

Help me. Help. I don't know what I'm saying anymore.

Speaker 1:

But it was a good learning experience and it really does reaffirm what you and I have learned since we've been doing this is there is a very unscripted yeah Formula here that you and I use and it's really just based on what we want for you know, all of our brothers out there to get from this show is that sitting down and talking brother to brother about this, the Mentors manual and the basic foundation Of free masonry. What it means, what it can mean, what it does not mean is really the crux of what we do.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, and you know we got further confirmation of that. It was kind of just everything was happening last night.

Speaker 1:

It was a big night for such a small little get together. It was a big night, yeah.

Speaker 2:

I mean our OK bragging on Sarasota Lodge. We took home the broken column, which is a little game we play in our district. The lodge that brings the most members to our master Mason Association monthly meeting gets to have the broken column for the month. So that broken column is now sitting in my bedroom. I convinced my wife that I have to have it for the rest of the year.

Speaker 1:

She was looking at it this morning. She's trying.

Speaker 2:

She's so supportive. She was like, so how long is it's going to be? I was like well, probably in the 40 days I'm kidding I'm going to bring it to the lodge. She's like oh my God, thank God.

Speaker 1:

You do so many crazy things.

Speaker 2:

I was like please no, but you know that night we Sarasota Lodge is back man.

Speaker 1:

We're back.

Speaker 2:

We're finally representing again externally. I mean, we do a good job in our lodge. We have a solid lodge. Very I think our mission this year in our lodge that we spoke at our installation was we want to be the best version of ourselves as men and mason's that we can be this year and try to be an example of what can, what you can get done if you do it right. That's our mission. It sounds easy but it's not.

Speaker 1:

It's not easy. No, no, but We've tried to live that Exactly and I tell you one of the things that I just thought of while you were saying that is Chaplain Joel, at our last dated meeting stood up, we're so lucky, we're so lucky to have him. He stood up at the last meeting and I could tell, because I was sitting directly across from him, that he was waiting for the perfect moment to stand up and say what he said. And what he said was that he, he is, he's, he's having trouble with his hearing, yeah, and it's getting harder and harder for him to perform his duties. So what he did is he said he wants to turn the chaplaincy over to somebody who's new at it and teach them and mentor them in the chaplaincy work until he's satisfied, right, with their proficiency and turn it over to them, and he would even be willing to pay that person's dues the right person's dues to get this done. This is Wow. This is Masonry man. That's Masonic to the core.

Speaker 2:

I was looking at it, the audience and people were like just, is this happening?

Speaker 1:

Loving it.

Speaker 2:

They were just loving that moment, I was loving that moment. Right, because you know what you don't know about brother Joel Furman? Brother Joel is from upstate, the Northeast, so he talks a lot about what he sees up there. Masonry is just different up there.

Speaker 1:

Right Down here yeah.

Speaker 2:

And he loves it. But he loves it down here too. He's very active in multiple lodges. He's competed at the state level four times, I think. Every single time he's been flawless as the chaplain Right. He's memorized all the prayers. He embellishes them. He knows the Canadian charge, which he does for us at our master Masonry Right. He's just a consummate professional because he has so much pride in his work. So he was supposed to be chaplain in our lodge a couple years ago. The person who became master had talked to him and made promises and then changed his mind a couple weeks before installation and said sorry, I got another guy, which didn't make Joel feel great, right.

Speaker 1:

Wouldn't make anyone feel great.

Speaker 2:

And this happens, you know, when you get a little situation like that, you just stop coming. So he didn't come to our lodge for a couple years and then when I realized, oh crap, I'm actually going to be sitting in the East.

Speaker 1:

I have to get Joel. I have to get Joel.

Speaker 2:

There are certain pillars in your line that you just have to have strong people in, and the chaplain, you know, is one where I didn't want some guy that's going to sit there and read cards.

Speaker 1:

You know, just read it yeah.

Speaker 2:

I needed somebody that's a ritualist there and that really cares, because Joel really cares about people.

Speaker 1:

He does absolutely care about people and about that position.

Speaker 2:

So much, yeah. And he stood up at the meeting and he had been telling me we really need to find a protege. This is somebody who cares about his work. He won't leave that station until he's got someone he's personally trained, verified that they're very proficient, and is going to leave it better than he found it. Masonry. One on one, one on one baby. Yeah, he's the man. He is the man.

Speaker 1:

It's. It's funny because we're going to really regret not having him there. But yeah, the person that sits there in his place is is a living representation of him.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, he's passing that, he's passing it on, he's creating a legacy to the next one.

Speaker 1:

I just my hope and prayer is that whoever it is that he settles on is somebody who truly takes it in, like you know, like he has, with passion and excellence, you know an eye towards excellence. You know? Yeah, absolutely yeah. So shout out to Chaplin, joel.

Speaker 2:

Yes. We love you, brother, and in the world.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, we're. We're 100% behind you. Whatever you need from us, you already have.

Speaker 2:

Like you said, he's been losing his hearing and he's been studying sign language for the last three years, I think. So he taught me sign, to sign the words when I speak to him. So if it gets to that point, I know sign language and I can. You know, brother chaplainly does some prayer, which I think is awesome. But you know, sarah Soto Lodge represented last night and then we had the where I was going with that.

Speaker 1:

So we had a great worshipful, joe Flades who's running?

Speaker 2:

for Grand Junior Warden at Grand Lodge showed up. Yeah, and he gave a speech and a bit of his speech tied exactly into what we were doing that night, which was he was preaching our sermon in his presentation in the way that we were going to teach that night.

Speaker 1:

Right.

Speaker 2:

And he's saying we need to do more of this and if he elected he has a plan to like make a official Grand Lodge program out of kind of more of a discussion model. And thinking about that really we say esoteric work.

Speaker 1:

But you know how does it relate to our life?

Speaker 2:

and, like what is the symbolism of all this? Because in masonry we get mostly facts and you know where do you find this in the digest, which he's right about. Or it's about leadership, training and business, running a business and things like that. But the grand launch doesn't put a whole lot out about the meaning behind the work that we do right and how to relate it to your life. There is some which you and I have been covering here for a whole year now right, and this is all we have, and he's talking about really going into this. So our district instructor was like so happy because he had already selected us that night yeah so we went in, we were we'll say look, this is something everyone knows is an issue and you know our district instructor, doug Dobbs, another man in our district and it was his last meeting his district is passing the torch after two years and he chose us to talk. That was special that was special. That meant a lot to me, man, because he's done a great job as the district instructor and he worked hard to get his proficiency cards another man who cares very deeply about the craft.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, we're so blessed I say this all the time but we've got some men and I'm sure there's other districts who have who have men of equal stature. I'm not saying that we're, you know, above anybody. We're all mason's here in the state of Florida. But I'm just absolutely blown away by the dedication of these, these mason's who have, who have, you know, ben mason's, you know their entire life. The gentleman from Grand Lodge who spoke last night, yeah, the brother, his passion level for the craft and for what he's doing is absolutely off the chain, man, and he brought some base masculine in your face stuff, man like he. He quizzed us, he quizzed the room yeah and the room I'm sorry but I'm. The room didn't do great. I mean, there was a couple of guys that kind of knew it, but he brought, he brought, he brought a question, yeah, from the EA perspective and and nobody nobody could really really answer it satisfactorily and he just busted out on that and then just went into a couple of things and I just thought, man, this guy is base man, this guy is, this guy is what we need. We need a guy with some cojones, some masonic cojones, to get out there and shake it up a little bit and I maybe I'll get in trouble for for saying that, but I don't know if I care, because we need that's what we need. And he, he just brought some facts. Man, he's got the receipts on what he's talking about. He's super passionate man. If you're gonna ask him a question, you better be ready to stick around for the answer, man, because he's gonna all of it, you know he's a straight-up guy. We're hoping to interview him during Grand Lodge. He said he's gonna be super busy. We may not be able to get him but but we're definitely gonna gonna try to sit down and talk with him a little bit more about his vision for his position and for the Lodge in the future five-year plan guy.

Speaker 2:

I like that just like worshipful. Chris Burns right here a five-year plan.

Speaker 1:

Man, I tried to push that.

Speaker 2:

Before I was master, I was trying to push a five-year plan so I could be a part of it well.

Speaker 1:

His point is taken.

Speaker 2:

Very well is that when, when you have a worst-of-a-master and his administration, quote, unquote, is in for one year, that it tends to get everything set up right before they're done, right before they're done, and then it falls off and nobody's really responsible for pushing whatever it was through not because they got a new thing right, a new shiny thing, yeah, and they look at that for a year and then something else and so, yeah, then you have all these half-done, poorly done projects, you know, in the wake of, you know, past masters.

Speaker 1:

That's a problem at the Lodge level too and, and let me just say it's not necessarily a problem with people, it's a problem with process. The process is problematic and this is what he's talking about. He wants to change the process to make it more conducive to, to, to keeping the vision. A man with a vision is a powerful thing, but if that vision has a time clock of one year on it and it's an actual two and a half year vision, well you're, we're just spinning our wheels and and he's real big on that and he just he was not afraid to bring up controversial topics. He brought up the home, the Masonic home in st Petersburg, and that's a hot topic baby, that's us, that's a smoking hot topic, and he was not afraid and and non apologetic for his position on it and he brought a plan with a, with a plan that I think I don't know. I've talked to two men who are in the know so far about the Masonic home issue and he's the third one who kind of brought the same perspective. So I am, I am formulating my opinion on it and and I'm not going to share that now, but maybe after Grand Lodge we can maybe do a, do a show and get some people in here and and try to bring some shed some light, if you will, on the issue, because it doesn't matter what side of the the issue you're on, something must be done yesterday to to rectify, you know, the coming, the coming situation that's happening and everyone seems to be choosing sides, and that what that does is it, it guarantees that nothing will ever get done until it's on fire and burning down and too late if you look at the legislation that Grand Lodge is trying to pass, and right worshipful Haskell, who previous he's also running for the Grand Junior Warden here in the state of Florida right, he visited our master Mason Association and he had the same exact plan as yep Joe fleedy.

Speaker 2:

So obviously it doesn't matter who we pick, it's going in a direction Grand Lodge has set their mind to going in a certain direction here in Florida which seems to be, we're gonna sell our Masonic home and probably we'll focus more on at-home care for our brothers yeah, it's a supplemental program that takes away the brick and mortar.

Speaker 1:

And and again, I'm not, I'm not, I'm not pro or or con on this issue, because I still don't know, I know enough information about it exactly but I'm I know that if you look up and the nation as a whole, brick and mortar is giving way to more supplemental types of situations, simply because brick and mortar anything is just ridiculously ungodly expensive to pull off on a day-to-day basis and I can only imagine what elder care on any level is, is cost, you know, would cost going forward it. Health care costs are, as everybody knows, are just going right through the roof. I think the shrine is the same way with the Shriners Hospital. You know they're getting rid of the brick and mortar hospitals and they're yeah they're trying to get into hospital wings right and clinics and make them clinics and and and and. Get rid of the brick and mortar and do more to actually help the people well, this is hello and you have to go forward.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, over time you have to. We're evolving, yep, and we're doing it out of necessity, not out of foresight, which is frustrating to us on the ground, because we see the problems and we don't understand why our leadership doesn't see them until the house is already on fire right but it is what it is and I would say that they are beginning to see it, because there's voices that are are being raised that can't be ignored.

Speaker 1:

And again, it wouldn't people wouldn't be talking about it if it wasn't an actual issue and, as far as I can tell so far, there is an issue coming with regard to that home up there, and something must be done or it will the money will be losing will. Yeah, there's they're spending far, far more than they are bringing in, and it's only a matter of time before they end up that they're not the federal government. They can't print fake money and devalue you know the future generations. They have to actually deal with a budget, with hard currency that cannot be inflated to cover you know their own desires, and that's all I'll say about our federal government at this point but hey, fred, yeah, we're gonna talk.

Speaker 2:

Keep listening because we're gonna talk more about the master Mason. Agree, but before I think we do it, yes, I just keep looking at something that's like calling out for attention here in our studio now I didn't know if you wanted to talk about this not publicly. We've been thinking about it, working on it behind the scenes. Yeah, there's video here, audio. The whole world's just hanging on our words, right, all right, let's do it now, okay if we had the new system which we are going to.

Speaker 1:

This is the last time we're gonna use our old makeshift system here for doing the. We bought a new, a new board and a digital switch and a bunch of equipment to up our game for season two, so this is the last time we're gonna use this one. If we had the new system, I could hit a button right now and have a huge applause sound effect, which would be really great, where we could announce what. What's coming up, what or a drum roll and or a drum roll here's what's coming up, guys? the Chris John Schaefer, our executive producer, and myself have put together a small little LLC company that is dedicated to luxury premium items. Now we started off with pursuing a, a bourbon oh boy, that we that we tried to do, and we did the research where that's a game that we're not able to enter into yet no we're gonna work in a book the game we were able to enter into. What's this?

Speaker 2:

as he reaches into his magical bag, these are three ruffians premium cigars.

Speaker 1:

We we started our own cigar label and it's called three ruffians. And. And is the website up.

Speaker 2:

Yes, it is three ruffians, the the number three ruffians dot com.

Speaker 1:

So go to the three ruffians dot com and check out our logo, because our logo is awesome and we worked really hard on it. One to get ready what we have is we have three offerings with our premium cigar line and these are these are Cuban seed, nicaraguan, grown and and locally rolled, imported right here in Florida by by D Lopez cigars, and they are. They are a cigar company that came out of Cuba, but they were there before the revolution. When they left. With the revolution, they they ended up, you know, like so many premium cigar companies. They ended up taking their seed and reproducing it in Nicaragua, in different places all over the world. These are these are made in Nicaragua, grown in Nicaragua and and cured and everything in Nicaragua and then shipped to here locally and rolled locally. These were rolled last week by some people and we're gonna we'll get more and more into the story of it. It's a pretty amazing story and we're very fortunate to have D Lopez cigars as our you know, as our vendor, because the history and heritage and pride that go into these cigars are absolutely off the chain. We are not worthy. This was absolute divine intervention, because as newbies in the cigar game, you don't get to this level on as a startup. But we did, we were very fortunate to do so. So, yeah, this is a premium cigar and at Grand Lodge we're gonna offer all three of them. So we have, we have the three. We call them.

Speaker 2:

There it's three ruffians, three ruffians is the cigar, but the three itself is kind of genius.

Speaker 1:

So it is genius, chris you you, you started, you, you brought, you brought the idea to the table.

Speaker 2:

So go, let's hear concept of it is that there's already. You know, most people want to go for the heroes, right, you want to be the super man, you want to be the, the guy that saves the day. But when we were talking about cigars and we were talking about whiskey, I was, like you know, this seems like more for ruffian kind of a bad guy situation where it does? we're giving in to the vices and the superfluities. And then, you know, fred actually was like yeah, and what are we doing is basins for trying to overcome that, you know, but hey, until we do, people need good stuff people need premium cigars and eventually premium whiskey yeah, so we came up with that. There are three of us John Schaefer, fred Packwood and Chris Burns and there's three ruffians. So John actually came up with the concept for the logo, which everybody loves when he showed it to us, and that was it. We were off to the races and we knew we had to get the logo right because it spoke to who we want, what we wanted this brand to kind of feel right, yeah, people and so we worked real hard on getting that logo right, and I can't wait for you guys to see it, because it's really awesome. It's kind of badass it is represents the ruffians. And yeah, the ruffians were bad guys, but they were. They were just like everyone else at one point in their lives and they were master masons. Yeah, they were master masons. Well, yeah, they were master masons and they were. You know, everyone should get a second chance, and that's what Masonry is all about, right, trying to prove ourselves as men.

Speaker 1:

So there's a ruffian inside of all of us, and Fred's got some great story to kind of elaborate on this three ruffians concept yeah, we're writing coming out right, we're writing the backstory of the three ruffians and and also the history of these cigars and how they came to us and how they, how they were actually, you know they came. These, these are rolled for us, so the filler, the leaf, the filler and the wrapper are all custom made for us. This is a premium cigar, so it's it's not.

Speaker 2:

It, it's a. It's a Masonic brand. Is what we want to Masonic grow it into.

Speaker 1:

So if you look, closely, you can see, you can see the, the compass and square on there and you can also see. It's a great, it's a really good. The logo is great. I love that logo. It just speaks yeah to what we're trying to do. So and and we do we have some backstory which is gonna be fun, and we're gonna do a little bit of a little bit of radio acting. We're gonna do a little bit of writing and stuff to bring them to you.

Speaker 2:

But so you have three different kinds right so we have, we have JA yeah, we have which would be the lightest of the three which would be the lightest of the three, the JA.

Speaker 1:

Then we have the the. JO, the JO which we the meet the medium grade and I'm excited to to to enjoy that particular cigar because it is it's a long leaf Nicaraguan Cirillo. The binder is Nicaraguan Cirillo 98. If you know anything about cigars, you know that that is a absolute premium feature. That particular blend for binder, that's a real 98, is an absolute premium feature. That is that is very rare and it makes this cigar very unique and it's the rapper is a Connecticut broadleaf rapper, so it's a Connecticut shade broadleaf rapper. That cigar right there, torpedo it's a torpedo. Yeah, it's a it's a 52 ring, six inch cigar, so it's a. It's a standard torpedo type of cigar, but that cigar right there, I think is going to be just an absolutely incredible smoke well, we have smoked it, we can confirm they are right absolutely. They're absolutely awesome. But I'm just excited this, this batch that came out. I'm just really excited to give them a try, and we'll do that at Grand Lodge.

Speaker 2:

So with you, with you, oh and sorry.

Speaker 1:

But our, our Habano. On the end, there is big daddy, the JU, the JU. Is it that it's a?

Speaker 2:

that's one's gonna murder the taste in your mouth absolutely it's.

Speaker 1:

It's a, it's a traditional church hill, it's a 48 ring, six, six and a half inch and it's also got that long leaf Nicaraguan Cirillo filler with the 98 Cirillo Nicaraguan binder, you know. But the and the rapper is a Cuban seed Habano, the 2000 Cuban seed Habano, nicaraguan, which if you know anything about cigars you know that that's gonna have that pepper back flavor to it. You know that real deep, rich flavor to it is that's gonna be a really good cigar. That's gonna be my favorite cigar. I'm excited to try this one. I'm excited to try all of them. I'm excited to try this one, that one I have tried and absolutely enjoyed it. I compare that to the Hoya de Monterey, santa Cruz. I know that's a big statement if you know anything about cigars, but I'm telling you right now it is definitely comparable to that cigar. So if you're into cigars and you know your cigars, you're going to love that Churchill offering that we're doing. And then, of course, the box press. It's a smaller cigar. It's going to be kind of that after dinner cigar. It's going to be that sitting at the bar you know one and done kind of cigar for yourself. It's also real good it's got. It's real light. It's going to be a real light, smoke, a lot of smoke, and I'm just overdoing it, I know because I'm excited about this. But let me just say this as well with regard to this offering right here A percentage of everything that we sell because we're not doing this to make money, necessarily, we're doing this to cover costs but 5% or we're not sure yet somewhere between 5% and 10% of everything we sell under the three Ruffians brand is going to go to the Shriners Hospital. So that's the idea.

Speaker 2:

So for now we plan to run specials for other Masonic charities.

Speaker 1:

I've been talking to the Shrine Motor Corps which I'm a member of, and they're interested somewhat interested, and we haven't really talked about it yet of doing a special release cigar which we can totally do with a custom label ring on it for, you know, for Motor Corps, shrine Motor Corps, and then a percentage of those sales will also go to. And if you're out there and you're thinking, man, I'd like to try something like that for our fundraiser, shoot us an email because we can ship, we can produce, we've got, we spend a lot of time on this, guys. So, we have a website set up and we can ship literally nationwide any amount. So if you want to do a fundraiser with a custom cigar label on it that kind of touts your lodge, the Shrine organization in your area, just shoot us an email and let us know. We can put that together for you and everyone benefits from it. That's what it is. I think it's a great fundraiser. Look, nobody, nobody's surprised when I say that Mason's know how to have a good time. And we do like premium premium whiskeys, premium premium cigars, premium everything. We like that. Have you ever heard of the grotto? Yeah, so the shrine in the grotto, the shrine and the grotto man. We know how to have a good time, and that's what. That's what three roughies is all about.

Speaker 2:

Okay, Well, it's a brand. So if you go to the threeruffyanscom, you'll see t-shirts and coasters and shorts and shoes and pretty much everything is going to be branded three ruffians right now, and we're planning to release general Masonic items in our online store there too.

Speaker 1:

Right, that should be really cool.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, as we progress. But we're just you know, starting small, starting small, crawl, walk, run. Yep, we're going to crawl. We will be bringing these at Grand Lodge with us at the booth.

Speaker 1:

We will be having.

Speaker 2:

I think there will be some three ruffians, merch and cigars.

Speaker 1:

The cigars will be there. We're going to sell them as a three pack as an introductory three pack, so all three will be in one package. J-a-o and J-U and J-U in one package and I think the price we reduce the price for for Grand Lodge I think it's going to be $45, which, if you know anything about cigars, that one right there is a $25 cigar. He's pointing at the Jubalum. I'm pointing at the big boy, that big dark boy right there which is going to be delicious. So if you know anything about cigars, you know that that's. That's a great price. Also, set yourself up for the Grand Lodge weekend with a cigar each day. If you want more than one, we'd be more than happy to sell them to you. We should have plenty for everybody. But anyway, I'm saying this as if you you're hearing this prior to Grand Lodge. I just realized Grand Lodge is probably over when the time this thing comes out. Just over. So anyways, Chris, back to you.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, so we'll be out there Sunday. Well, it doesn't matter, we'll be there Sunday, monday, tuesday.

Speaker 1:

We were there Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. It went really great.

Speaker 2:

You're hearing this Wednesday as the installations are happening for our new Grand Master and all our new district deputies and district instructors. Congratulations to everybody, looking forward to working with as many of you as you can as we can, I think. Now let's finish off this master Mason talk and let's get to some content here. Coming up about our first interviews After this. Next week you're going to hear our first interviews with people on the show we've ever done. Yeah, we're going to start season two with people other than Fred and Chris you get to listen to finally, We'll do some interviews.

Speaker 1:

The format we think we're going to do is we'll probably interview we're hoping the new, the past Grand Master and the upcoming Grand Master have agreed to sit down and talk with us. Now these are going to be some very busy men so we may not get to sit with them. It's possible. But if we do, we'll do our best to get them and then we're going to sit down and we're going to talk a little bit about the interview as part of the show. Will pepper in there in the new season are esoteric discussions, which I think are super duper important, like we just talked about.

Speaker 2:

And never stopped that.

Speaker 1:

We're never going to stop doing that because it's just absolutely awesome. So, anyway, grand Lodge, it was awesome, it's going to be awesome. We'll talk about it next time. So what do you say? We get into a little bit of this yeah, let's do this. So I think that this has to absolutely be the last for now, for our work on Master Mason in this series, so I thought we would end with the last two. Now the five. Five point two, eight is the raising of a candidate. It's very long, it's half a page. So we'll, I think what we'll do is we'll just read a paragraph or two and then we'll talk about it and we'll read more and read more, instead of trying to Fred, trying without his glasses, which broke last night.

Speaker 2:

I'm going to read that, trying to read if you want, but I'm going to have to read it afterwards.

Speaker 1:

Oh really, yeah, because I can't go ahead, let's try it. Let's try it. Yeah, ok, I'm. I'm Chris, and Chris is Fred Go the expression raised to the sublime degree. I'm sorry, don't do that impression.

Speaker 2:

I'm sorry, I'm sorry for everybody. Ok, rewind the expression raised to the sublime degree of Master Mason and as little understood outside of fraternity, it refers, of course, to a part of the ceremony of the degree itself. Symbolically, however, it presents a resurrection after death and Masonic faith in the immortality of the soul. Sorry, brother Negi, he doesn't like to talk about resurrection.

Speaker 1:

I just, we both must have thought of that immediately.

Speaker 2:

I know I was like oh, he's not going to like, he has a differing opinion.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, which is fine. That's what we we yeah, no resurrection. Ok, ok, I'll just put the words there.

Speaker 2:

That's all I'm saying. This degree is the sublime climax of symbolic Freemasonry. If the initiate finds in it only the lying, dying and raising of a master as a literal drama which is designed to teach the virtues of inflexible fidelity and fortitude, he has received only partial light and seen nothing but a drama with a moral. This sublime degree is far more than that, for it seeks to answer the old age question uttered by Job If a man die, shall he live again? Past grandmaster Carl Cloddy aptly described some of the great lessons of and purpose of the degree in his introduction to Freemasonry. The degree delves into the deepest recesses of man's nature. While it leads the initiate into the sanctum sanctorum of the temple, it probes into the holy of holies in his heart as a whole. The degree is symbolic of that old age by the wisdom of which we may enjoy the happy reflection consequent upon the life well spent and die in the hope of a glorious immortality. It is at once the universal and yearning question of man throughout all ages, and its answer. It teaches no creed, no dogma, no religion, only that there is a hope of immortality. There is an architect by whose mercy we may live again, leaving to each brother his choice of interpretation by which he may read the great beyond. It teaches the power and the powerless of evil. For those who are happy in belief in the resurrection of the physical body, which Paul has taught, the degree assures of all that the longing heart can wish. When the lesson of the greatest hope and dearest wish of all mankind is made manifest, the sublime degree turns to this life and this brotherhood. And in the symbolism of the lion, the exposition of the five points of fellowship, the means of which by which a mason may claim all that a man may from his brother and the world, ties together the heretic legend and daily living in a manner which no thoughtful man may see or hear without a thrill Away, at once awe-inspiring and heartening. Terrible yet beautiful, sternly uncompromising yet strangely comforting. The ceremony is not of earth, earthy, but of that land of the inner life, that home of the spirit, where each man thinks the secret thoughts he tells never, never. Wow Dang, that's beautiful.

Speaker 1:

That's really beautiful man. So let's talk a little bit about resurrection. Let's start there, go back and, like I said, I know I'm going to have to read some of this again.

Speaker 2:

Certain people don't like the word resurrection, but it is used here, and it is referenced to the physical raising of the body as well as the immortality of the soul, which are two different things, obviously.

Speaker 1:

So, without giving away any secrets, why resurrection? Why, how, how does it? How does it? So I see that one dies, and I'm thinking about the actual ritual which we cannot talk about, but every mason listening knows what I'm talking about. At the ritual, one, one dies, but the new one raises up. I'm trying to be very yes, yes, right, correct Is that not resurrection.

Speaker 2:

It is.

Speaker 1:

It is.

Speaker 2:

It is Absolutely.

Speaker 1:

The new one is to carry on in instead of the old one. Am I? Am I wrong?

Speaker 2:

Am I wrong about that?

Speaker 1:

No, in other words, he it's. This is impossible. You got to go bigger. You got to go bigger, go bigger.

Speaker 2:

So the concept is that Good and truth are are destroyed by evil.

Speaker 1:

Good and truth are a terminated by evil Correct.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, but not really. You can only stop it for a little while, because evil isn't capable of sustaining itself and good will always prevail. But we have to be vigilant against evil or it will, over and over again, kill the good. And so what this? In the broadest terms, what this degree, I think is what it's saying here is that you know you have to try to live a virtuous life, you have to try to work against evil and be a soldier for good, and if you can struggle with that and do that and not succeed your whole life, but try your hardest, you will be rewarded with the divine truth, the real secret word of a master Mason, as we talked about in our last podcast you will receive the greatest gift that any soul could hope to receive, which is glorious, eternal life in a place of just goodness and love and kindness for all eternity. And that is what everyone is. We're all striving for is to find that ultimate truth of how do we achieve that and how do we, how do we use it to fight against the evil?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, man, this is, this is worthy. We're definitely coming back to this one, guys, because this is really deep and it's huge. It's probably one of the longest paragraph, one of the longest sections in the entire Mentor's Manual, and for good reason, I see. I just without you. I think every master Mason listening knows what I'm trying to do here. But see, there was a in symbolically, right, hiram Abith is the man we're talking about here, right? But then all of a sudden, it's, it's, it's me. All of a sudden, the it goes from a story about that man and what happened to him to me being pulled up and now being. Am I now to carry on? Is that what we take from that? Did I do a good job of that without blowing it? I think I did.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I think you did try it.

Speaker 1:

You get what I'm saying, though, and you guys who are listening, who are shouting at the radio right now, just send emails, and kind of help us with that.

Speaker 2:

They're saying it's so much more eloquently and simply than we are. Yeah well.

Speaker 1:

I refuse to give away any of the secrets that I'm obligated to keep. So and I'm working very hard to do that. Good man, good man, that's hard, you know it's tough.

Speaker 2:

To talk about this stuff and we honestly want to be real careful. People think we're real frivolous and just say, whatever, we're really careful to try to avoid revealing any of the secrets. We want to keep our obligation.

Speaker 1:

But I'm hoping that this might cause those who are listening to get amongst a bunch of master masons together in private and actually openly discuss this situation.

Speaker 2:

That was what was great about last night we had an open discussion and it became real personal People started to say we're talking about the roughians, the two ways you can perceive it, and one of the symbolism of the roughians is the bad parts of ourselves that we're always fighting, and people were talking about their life experience and how they were roughians 100% roughian and how they've changed over time and how different it is to live life. And you even had our district deputy who was roasted beautifully last night, beautifully roasted by.

Speaker 1:

No, I'm just kidding it wasn't beautiful.

Speaker 2:

It was probably a hot mess, but we did our best.

Speaker 1:

It was cringy yeah, it was super cringy. It went on too long, and that's what made it so cool. Yeah yeah, yeah.

Speaker 2:

Exactly, we over did it. But you know what? We did something which is more than some. So you win some, you lose some. That's right, it was awesome.

Speaker 1:

And I think that's the real right worshipful district deputy.

Speaker 2:

Kian Master. Heyber absolutely appreciated it, Because that's just the kind of guy he is, but he made a comment when we were talking about that. I hope you brothers remember this, because you're different now. Yes, but don't judge them because you were then.

Speaker 1:

Oh, right right.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, that's a great point. Don't judge those guys.

Speaker 1:

Really good point when you're looking at the 30-year-old Mason coming in, who seems clueless, who seems unable to do any of the real work, don't, don't make a judgment call on him, because that's probably the way you were. Yeah, you were that age, I know, when I was 35, I was a hot mess baby and I regret, you know, looking back, I wish I would have known about Masonry in my early 30s and I'm sure there's a lot of people out there who can say that who came into the craft late. It would have made a huge difference in my life. So when we see these young men and I think that was his point when we see these young men who are very rough, very rough Ashlars, very, very, very rough Ashlars, as you were and I was at that age come alongside them and lift them up and encourage them and help them, because they could be that next Masonic leader you know who could help the craft really take it to the next level.

Speaker 2:

And you know exactly what they need if you were in their situation.

Speaker 1:

Absolutely.

Speaker 2:

So you can be the thing for them that you didn't have for yourself make their life better through your experience. And this is what Masonry is 100% about when we say we make good men better. This is it we're talking about. Hey, this degree is all about we are going to expire and your time is limited and you better do the best you can with the time you have for as many people as you can, Because that's the highest calling we have as people is to help each other, and using all the negative and the bad in your life for good for somebody else's is that that's the meaning and that's why you're here. I think that's why we're all here. So you want to hit the next section of that Are you sure Are you ready to continue this?

Speaker 1:

conversation. This is no, we have to come back to the raising of the candidate. We'll come back to that one and we'll spend a whole show on it, because this is a good one. However, the next one is the all seeing eye, which is and I'll read it If you don't mind. Yeah, I'll read it and we'll comment on it. I have some notes here. I obviously I've studied this already because my notes are all over it, but anyway. So the all seeing eye. This is a very old symbol of deity in the religion of Egypt. The God Osaurus, osirius oh, thank you, osirius was was represented by an open eye and this symbol was placed in all his temples. Undoubtedly, the Hebrew people inherited many of their religious customs and symbols. There's a bug right there. I saw him earlier inherited many of their religious customs and symbols from the Egyptians. Reference to this particular symbol may be found in the Old Testament, where, in Psalm 34, these words are to be found the eye of Jehovah are upon the righteous, or in Psalm 121, he that keepeth Israel shall never sleep nor slumber. Thus, the idea that Jehovah watched over man was symbolized by the all seeing eye as a manifestation of his omnipresence and omniescence.

Speaker 2:

To the.

Speaker 1:

Freemason. This symbol becomes a reminder that the things which we do before the eyes of men and those which we do in secret are beheld by the eye which can explore our innermost thoughts and will witness against us in that tribunal where there are no miscarriages of justice. This is huge, yeah. And tribunal.

Speaker 2:

Hmm, what's that? Also, it's interesting that this is the first symbol they're pointing out in the Master Mason degree, and this is a symbol that you will find in all currency, all American currency, all American currency.

Speaker 1:

And I've literally been.

Speaker 2:

Notice. I pointed that out last night and another issue that, like you're like wow, this is obviously related directly to what we're talking about our First Amendment rights. First Amendment rights.

Speaker 1:

Where'd that come from?

Speaker 2:

And how JA represents that.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, right To taking away of that. Yeah, free speech, that's right.

Speaker 2:

Taking away free speech. The first symbol we're talking about is the most prominent symbol on our currency.

Speaker 1:

It's so interesting to me, being raised not raised, but being in the church for the last 30 years or so Christian church that is, the fact that the all seeing eye on the top of the rising pyramid is on our money was always this weird kind of I don't know how to explain it. Yeah, that's that Masonry stuff. The United States was evil because of Masonry, this Masonry that's like. But I never understood it Because to me if you look at it back of a dollar bill and you look at it, it doesn't look evil.

Speaker 2:

Well, what do you see? You see an unfinished pyramid, and atop it is the all seeing eye.

Speaker 1:

Right.

Speaker 2:

And now you understand it as a Mason right.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, now I get it.

Speaker 2:

The unfinished pyramid is an unfinished building. You're never going to complete it in this life.

Speaker 1:

Right, the work is ongoing and it is overseen by God himself.

Speaker 2:

It's on our currency, so the fact is, America is an unfinished pyramid. We will never be complete. We're always seeking to improve ourselves and continue to build. And, above all of it watches us, the all seeing eye which sees into our hearts, not what we say.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and there's a famous Latin phrase on there and I'm not even going to attempt it, I'm desperately thinking of do. I have a dollar bill.

Speaker 2:

The Pluribus Unum.

Speaker 1:

No well, yes, it says that, but there's another one. Or do something out of the one.

Speaker 2:

Many, many out of the one Anyway. Yeah, Masonic principles for Warshare.

Speaker 1:

To the Freemason. This symbol becomes a reminder that the things which we do before the eyes of men and those which we do in secret are beheld by the eye which can explore our innermost thoughts and will witness against us in the tribunal where there is no miscarriage of justice. So Masonic teaches that our actions here on earth do matter when we pass on to that celestial lodge you know, forward and to mind your behaviors before God. I think of any man who cries out with a pure heart to God, because since there is a God, whoever he is, some of us claim to have found knowledge in that area. Some of us claim to still be searching in that area, but if he is who he says he is, and if you cry out to a pure heart to know more, to walk in those ways, will this being not reach out to you in the way that he has prescribed? I say yes.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, and what this symbol, I think it's saying here, is that we're all going to be judged. No one has ever not been judged. It's ever been born Right. It's going to be. We're all going to have a judgment at some point and you're going to be judged based off of what the all seeing eye saw, not based on what men and women saw. So that's what integrity is right, they tell you. It's what you do when you think no one is looking. That's integrity.

Speaker 1:

Doing the right thing when no one's there to see it.

Speaker 2:

Right. And so masonry is saying just imagine that this all seeing eye is watching you all the time, it knows what you're thinking and it's recording, and that at the day of your tribunal they say or judgment. Your entire life will play out and you'll be judged based on your thoughts and your actions. Right.

Speaker 1:

Lots of legal terminology or it has a real legal feel to it. You know the tribunal and judgment and it has a real courtroom feel to it, which purports really well to the faith you know that I hold to as far as a forensic type of understanding of justice and punishment and mercy to. You know, with justice without mercy is an abomination to God. That's what you know. The scriptures that we placed our hand on it says that all over the place.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, you're not going to get. But it's not like a. It's saying don't think of this as a like a law room like we have. You're not going to get to argue your case, no one's going to represent you. Well, now, that's an interesting on your behalf. That's a great judgment that you're going to receive.

Speaker 1:

That's a great point Now there are. You have to. This is the part where you bring your faith into masonry. Right, so you come to masonry. It's not a religion. We bring our faith, or whatever it is, our spirituality, our religion into it. For me, being a Christian, you know I bring it in, I bring into it and and you're what I am, what I'm a. Christian man.

Speaker 2:

How did I not know this about you? You did know that I am, that's right.

Speaker 1:

If you, if you want to know I'm an actually a Calvinist, go look it up and send all your cards and letters to Chris.

Speaker 2:

I don't want to hear it. Send it to me. I'll read him Like what the heck is he talking?

Speaker 1:

about. But but there is, you know, in in in the courtroom scene. You know I do have an attorney, you know I do have one to represent me before this to to lay out, you know, a case that that I can't win, you know, and anyways, that's as far as I'll go with it. But whoever you are out there listening to this, I do.

Speaker 2:

The doesn't Okay, as a Christian. Let's, let's talk about it. Fine, you brought it up, hit me as a Christian, yeah, and Jesus is the person that is going to be in your intermediary to God. Is what you're saying in this kind of mock trial. We're talking about like you know, symbolically here. Okay, so wouldn't you have the same kind of relationship with Jesus that this story is saying, using the word God? But you know you're being watched and judge. Jesus is watching you and judging you kind of in the same way, isn't he in your faith?

Speaker 1:

Well, what he said was that in John, chapter seven, he says I judge no man. So he came here to lay down his life for, for the lost, okay, and he came to redeem and collect up the law. So when he was here he made no judgment. However, now that he has ascended, all judgment has been put into his hand. Christianity, let's not, let's not.

Speaker 2:

There you go, you have a judge, you still have a judge.

Speaker 1:

God is. God is our judge and God is also our advocate. Why? Because of the triune doctrine of the Trinity. Now, we're not going there today, because that one, that one's a real hot.

Speaker 2:

But that's the whole show.

Speaker 1:

Christians quick conversation when Christians irresponsibly blurred out Jesus is God. What they're talking about is the doctrine of the Trinity and the doctrine of substitutionary atonement, all in one little irresponsibly blurted out phrase that no one really understands. It requires lots of teaching and time spent with somebody who knows it to explain it clearly. So I don't ever throw around, throw out theological terminology like that, because first thing it's, it's. It's a whole new language that you have to learn and understand. Christianity is not easy to understand yeah, it's, but I don't think anything that is worth your time should be easy to understand. You should have to dig into. That's why I tell people know what you believe and know why you believe it, because it's worth it. Your eternal destiny matters. And you need to be fully convinced about what it is you believe. I am fully convinced about what I, what I believe. I am more than willing to discuss it with anybody at any time, as long as it's done with gentleness and I love it because I disagree with you.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely not 100% sure, and I don't know if I ever want to be 100% sure which is I totally respect that. You know what I'm saying. We're kind of talking about that we have. It has come up a couple times here. Yeah, talk about, like you want to and I said it last night you want to be open to like new information and be able to, like you know, progress, basically absolutely, because, as we, get older, we experience more, so we get more information and we do change our behaviors like you're not the same guy you were in your 30s.

Speaker 1:

Oh yeah. God, because you've you know, experienced things, you've made changes in your life, right.

Speaker 2:

So, and that has happened to me too, and so many times when I thought for sure that I knew something and then I was proven wrong. My worldview had to change. And that is painful, man. Every time I thought I freaking knew something right, and the carpet gets pulled out from underneath me and I'm like, damn it, it's healthy, damn it, but it's painful. So I don't want to be in that place anymore where, like I'm just so convinced, I have a strong affiliations to ideas for sure, things that I feel very confident about, but there are just things that in my wife hates this too. We talk about it all the time. She's like I'm not afraid to die, but I'm afraid not to know all this awesome stuff that I'm never going to know. You know, and as I get older I keep finding things out and I'm like, damn I wish I knew that when I was young. And that's kind of where I'm at. Like, I accept that I can't really understand this stuff and that if I have to delve into 18 years of education to for, as you say, fully understand it, 30 years, 30 years yeah. I'm willing to take that journey for sure, because I do want more understanding, but I don't believe that you know for me that I ever want to find myself in a place where I'm saying you're wrong, you're wrong, you're wrong, I'm right because I know for sure. Right, I get that, I understand here's let me give you an example.

Speaker 1:

I used to be what's known as a literal six day creationist, so this is a person who believes that never heard of that. Creationist is a person that believes the first two chapters of Genesis are talking about literal 24 hour days in succession. So on day one he did this day today, all the way up to day six, and then on day seven he rested. And what are? The universe, the earth, everything was up and running Okay.

Speaker 2:

Did they really still to this day to?

Speaker 1:

this day there are six day literal, six day creationist.

Speaker 2:

Did they like you've done more Well, let me, let me finish. Let me finish my story here first, and then we'll talk.

Speaker 1:

So what? It never sat well with me because if you, if you read it in the original language and you do the word studies on it, there's so many, there's so many options as far as interpretation goes there. First thing, the book of Genesis as a whole was not given, was not given for us to know how old the universe is. Okay, it's not. That's not what it's for. Okay, it clearly. It clearly shows everything God's interaction with mankind and the remedies that he has, he has given for our predicament. Okay so, but here's what happened. I never felt good about it as six day literal creation. I was reading a story about a supernova, sn 1984. Sn 1984 is a supernova that we've been tracking for many, many, many, many years. Mathematically speaking, okay, now this is empirical proof. On a mathematical basis, it's 275,000 years old. Okay, the light signatures that our eyes are seeing are a minimum of 275,000 years old. How do you get there that those light signatures are are extremely old? Those are 275,000 years old. We're also seeing, starting to see credible evidence with carbon dating. It was not a credible science for the longest time, but we're starting to see that the earth is clearly dad, clearly more than four or five thousand years old. Okay, guys, guys, it just is if we're seeing light signatures that can be mathematically proven to be 275,000 years old, the earth has got to be at least that old. So for me, I opened up my mind at that point to the possibility that, you know the the church was kind of putting out this six day literal creation thing, but it really wasn't based on the scriptures, it was based on people's opinion of it. As I dug into it more and more I changed my mind. I learned something new about my faith, and and that's that's it's like everything else. you know, there's a core, foundational belief in my faith that I hold to. But then there's all these peripheral issues. Don't even get me started on end of time stuff. I mean, that's just a wackiest, most embarrassing junk out there in the Christian faith that I've ever heard of. But but I, I studied it, I saw that it was not correct and I made adjustments based on what I know to be true. And it comes down to what I always say what is the most plausible idea? Because there there are no guarantees, there there's no absolutely sure that. That's why we call it faith. It's nothing is absolutely positively 100% proof.

Speaker 2:

Sure, there's a choice. You choose that I'm gonna accept this. What is more plausible? A?

Speaker 1:

six day literal creation that puts the earth at about 6000 years old, or an actual imperial mathematical fact of light signatures hitting the earth that are 275,000 years old. What? What is more plausible? Well, in my opinion, the latter is far more plausible than the former, and I made a decision based on that. The reason why I keep talking the way I talk on this podcast and in masonic circles is because I want every Mason to do exactly that. Whatever it is you're into, whatever it is that you're you're pursuing on a spiritual level, know it, know it. What is the most plausible explanation for what it is that you're trying to believe or understand?

Speaker 2:

Mm, hmm. Well, when you talk about religion with plausible explanations, it gets laws ability super fuzzy. Well I don't know, because it's, it's all. I think all of these, all the faiths, are really what you know, that it really is teaching moral morality to the people, and I think that's the purpose of any kind of like organized religion is to bring a certain standard and morality to the people.

Speaker 1:

It's what it evolved into. Correct, yeah, but what is it at its core? What is what is well?

Speaker 2:

it's giving you a path to salvation.

Speaker 1:

All, all face prior, prior to the schism in 1040, which is where we ended up with the Roman Catholic Church Church on the west and the ether Eastern Orthodox Church on the east. Okay, prior to that there was one church. What was the foundational beliefs of that church? Forget all the other stuff that prior to what the big? Giant hats and the robes and the incense and. Jewish people. No, no, this was the Christian faith coming out of Palestine, coming out of ancient Palestine up to 10, up to 1040, which was known as the Great Schism, which is where the West and the East split.

Speaker 2:

And out of that, today, protestants, is that no?

Speaker 1:

that's 500 years ago.

Speaker 2:

Try to stay with me, brother. I'm trying hard. I'm not as a great example, though. See how confusing it is.

Speaker 1:

Yes, really confusing, but the basic listening, trying to understand you, and this is because of man getting involved in in in a space where he really shouldn't try to be so technically involved. The basics of the faith have always been the same and remain the same today and if six year old can understand, as a matter of fact, all three of my children, I brought them to a place where they clearly understood it before they were in high school and all of them made professions of faith at a very young age, not because I forced it on them, not because I perfectly modeled it, Lord knows but, because I explained it to them in a way that they could understand and I let them go. And they came back years later and said yeah okay, dad, I'm willing to walk down this road with you, and, and, and. It's the most plausible idea in its basic form. As far as all the other stuff goes, I don't know how we got off and we're like 20 minutes into this thing.

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

As far as all the other stuff goes, it's it's man trying to figure out stuff that maybe he, maybe he should, maybe he shouldn't, but nobody should be super dogmatic about any of these peripheral issues. Anybody who's dogmatic about the age of the earth from a spiritual standpoint, remove yourself from them immediately, because they're they're preaching something that they don't need to be preaching.

Speaker 2:

There's no reason for it, it's not the foundation, that's the roof shingle Right. Right, it's the dressings, yeah, not the meat and potatoes.

Speaker 1:

What I'm saying to every man listening to this podcast is is what I always say, and I'm going to say it. They're going to put it on my gravestone. For goodness sakes, brother, take the time to learn what it is you believe. If you're saying to yourself I don't know what I believe, that's awesome. That's an awesome place to start. Okay, begin there.

Speaker 2:

What do you believe?

Speaker 1:

and take a step forward and verify as best you can to what is most plausible, going forward.

Speaker 2:

I'll go a step further than Fred. Take the time to understand what other people believe. Oh, absolutely, absolutely. Yeah you know what you believe. It's hard to take the time to understand what other people believe. You don't have to believe it. I saw a Facebook post you know I love these little things that people put in. It said basically that I absolutely respect your right to your belief. That doesn't mean I have to respect what you believe in any way, shape or form.

Speaker 1:

Absolutely not, absolutely not.

Speaker 2:

But you know, it's good to know. It's good to know why they believe what they believe. You might understand more of them.

Speaker 1:

I just think it's essential in human interaction and human growth. How can I sit, how can I say I have a close relationship with you and not know what it is that?

Speaker 2:

you believe or beliefs, and what your core beliefs are. Living my life by.

Speaker 1:

Right, I mean and this happens all the time People have relations, they think they have these deep, close relationships, but when it comes to matters of their spiritual belief systems or or their faith, they it's like hands off. You know, it's that dumb old bartenders rule Never talk about religion or politics.

Speaker 2:

Well, then what are you going to?

Speaker 1:

talk about the weather. I mean, come on man, those are the two teams and the two most engaging, passionate things you could talk about. Yeah, oh, that's off limits. So you need to talk about the latest Netflix thing or you need to talk about you know.

Speaker 2:

You know why they do it. They say that because people struggle. I mean, and it came up last night in our conversation, brother Tishman said you know, people tend to be around people that are like them. Right and we use the term I like you, and he was saying that kind of means I'm like you, and that's what that was a great point, wasn't it? I feel like you're not like me.

Speaker 1:

I don't want to be around you anymore.

Speaker 2:

Right, right that's.

Speaker 1:

That's anti masonry right there, absolutely Like you're, not like me.

Speaker 2:

Tell me more, right. I'm really curious. Now, that's what a Mason says.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I so agree with that concept because it's one of the things that brought me into Mason really like somebody.

Speaker 2:

Oh, we're not different. I still love you. Right, come here.

Speaker 1:

Right, come here.

Speaker 2:

Tell me why you're different. I want to know what's going on here. Are we really that different? And the more you talk, the more you're going to find out you're not.

Speaker 1:

Well, no, as far as the human experience goes, we're all looking for the same thing. We want to be accepted and loved for who we are. Yes, you know, we want to have a safe environment. We want to be able to provide and protect and care for the ones we love. We want to be in a community. That's you know we all that's. Those are the the hierarchy of human needs, man, you know it's it that the that's all the same.

Speaker 2:

It's complicated, you know a person isn't his career. I don't want to be known as the digital marketing guy.

Speaker 1:

Right Way, more than that. Yeah, you are Absolutely. I'm not that, although that's a pretty cool job.

Speaker 2:

Well, thanks.

Speaker 1:

Most of the time you build things.

Speaker 2:

I hate my job, but you don't want to be known as the guy that build things.

Speaker 1:

Right, I don't want to be the only guy that builds.

Speaker 2:

You're more than the Christian. He's Calvinist guy. Who is that Like? You're more than that. You have a family, you have passions, you have things, you have experiences that make up who you are. And if I shut off because one of those things isn't the same as my story, then we're never going to have true, yeah relationships with it.

Speaker 1:

Can you say you know well who am I, you know? Do you have a statement when? People do you know, I do, I have those things.

Speaker 2:

This is what I do for a living. This is my religion. Like that's not who you are, I didn't ask. That is not who you are Right.

Speaker 1:

And I have formulated, you know, my response to that. Oh really I have.

Speaker 2:

And I hesitate, I hesitate to share it.

Speaker 1:

No it's, it's a very common, it's a very, it's a very common one in in Calvinistic circles. I want to hear it. I am an adopted son of Abraham in Christ Okay.

Speaker 2:

I am an adopted son of Abraham in your religion.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, okay, that's, that's who I am.

Speaker 2:

That's who.

Speaker 1:

I am at my core. And something that that brother, judd, worshipful Judd, said last night, and this is off topic.

Speaker 2:

Well, this is a rabbit hole but it's all off, it's all we are. So off the range.

Speaker 1:

Um, he said. He said, remember guys, it's, it's God family work and masonry. Yeah, and I was just taken back by that. Yeah that is. That is such a great outlook. Yeah, um, where you put it? You know how you put it, I am. We're hoping to interview that brother more than once. I would be a fan of having him on once a month to give us a report on where he's at with with his role as our district instructor. I think that would be a great 10 minute segment every month to just get an update. Yeah what he's doing, how it's going, where he needs us to be. I think we, I think we need to do that. We'll talk to him at Grand Lodge about, about putting that together, but anyways, as a priority, as priorities in your life, god, family, work, masonry.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, that's right it makes sense.

Speaker 1:

It totally makes sense because masonry being the last on that list is because it's foundational in keeping those other three in line.

Speaker 2:

It's brilliant. Yeah, and that that you, you don't ever want to, and I've seen brothers like put all their attention at the bottom and they forgot about their wife and they forgot about their job and I'm pretty sure, based on what I saw, they forgot about their commitments to their creator. But they were 100% in the masonry and they you know they did amazingly well in free masonry and I kept looking around telling people. I don't think this is a good example of how we're supposed to be.

Speaker 1:

I don't think we should be lifting this individual up because he's hurting himself so visibly. Right.

Speaker 2:

And he's no longer around. I mean, he's burned himself out and and it's because the proper attention wasn't like Jud Warshawful. Jud said, you got to focus on what's most important, and masonry is important. It should be a part of our lives. Right and should inform all of the others, but not to their detriment. Right, I can only do as much as you can do in masonry. If you got to focus on the balance of your life.

Speaker 1:

But I'm taking what he said, that prioritized list, and I wrote it down in my journal. I'll be, I'll be digging deeper into that because I'm going to implement that into my life. I'm going to make sure that you know my, my work, my responsibility to my, my church is going to my responsibility before the Lord, before God, is going to become the priority because, through that. it is my, that's my ability in my mind and in my body to take care of my family, to take care of my work and to be a good mason within the lodge and I, just, I just love it. I'm going to develop that more and more.

Speaker 2:

We're going to hear more about that that go back to your inner apprentice degree in the first working tool you're presented. That's right.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, thanks for being engaged, man Right.

Speaker 2:

That's right. Yeah, service of God, and the stress where the brother your work and your family and the refreshment and sleep. Yeah, yeah.

Speaker 1:

And and I'm sure that's what brother Judd was, yeah, was referring to. I'm sure that's where he formulated you know that from, but we'll, we'll get him on and we'll talk more about that with him, because I just think that brother's just he's just like he's just this walking Encyclopedia of Masonic goodness that we need to tap into and get him to start talking. He's one of those. I feel like sorry, worstful Judd, if we're Talking, talk, gushing about you, but I'm I just feel like once we get, we want to tap into where he's at Right and get it out there for everyone to hear and I think.

Speaker 2:

I just think he's got a lot to say. Yeah, I think he's got a lot a lot to say, man. He knows his stuff, man and he was saying last night I was a major ruffian. I mean, he's covered in tattoos, gauges in his ear.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, yeah man.

Speaker 2:

He looks like a scary guy, but nice, as sweet as person, truly Genuine guy and another one of our, what I called.

Speaker 1:

You know our, our Masonic statesman comes out of the Lodge, district 23 master last year, the very first entered apprentice Degree that I witnessed apart from my own was, there was down there, while he was worth full master, I thought to self man, these guys know what they're doing.

Speaker 2:

Yeah well, he's got his gold card, he lectures, and I've seen him lecture and I he's on the same path. I am where we're just trying to Deliver emotions and not words, which is the thing that right wishful fleet us was saying Just saying words isn't doing anybody any good. Right the meaning behind it and the emotion behind it.

Speaker 1:

Oh, he would be trying to convey he was preaching our sermon. Man right big time. Yeah, that was. That was a great moment.

Speaker 2:

I felt like jumping up. You know me too right. I was like, yeah, I understand, he's running for a political appointment.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, but you can't fake that. You can't fake that passion. That is him, that's what he's about.

Speaker 2:

There was a definitely Unmistakable passion coming out of him. Yeah in the words and the energy, the way he was talking right didn't feel as, professionally put together, more like I got to get this off my chest situation, that it was a yeah, no, he's crap this, his, his rhetorical skills are tied to his heart and his passion.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and some people, for some people, that's just very natural. It just it just comes right out, you know, and that's that's basically what you're seeing there, and and I don't I probably don't agree with everything the man is is trying to do, but I don't have to you know and he doesn't need me to. So it's. This is the beauty of it, but those core things that he did speak about, I am in favor of. I have to be honest. But let's not go back down that trail. What do we do?

Speaker 2:

how we get how we gonna close out, man, because we're done we did it, master Mason.

Speaker 1:

Yes, and it was only what ten shows nine nine.

Speaker 2:

Nine shows over nine hours.

Speaker 1:

That that's a long time. I enjoyed every minute of it. I got to say me too. I've I've learned so much Along this, this journey right here, and I'm definitely looking forward to learning so much more and really Getting getting more of you guys out there to reach out to the show and to give us you know more, more content based on you know, what you see, what you hear in your life Well, you know, what is it you want us to do? Where do we go with this? I'd like to hear from people you know along those kind of lines, for sure, a lot more.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, you can impact it directly. We're here.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, that's right.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, we're here for you, we are with you, we are you so yeah, that's right. And you know, like you said, this is a divine providence. It feels like like this is supposed to be happening.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, it came together in that way we're.

Speaker 2:

We're just gonna continue doing the only thing we know to do, which is, you know, talk about Freemasonry in. The ironic thing is when you said, hey, here's the platform we're gonna use to podcast, read up on this stuff. I did read up on it. They have a huge blog network and you read all these articles and they warn you that you are gonna burn out like you're gonna plateau. Right right common happens to everybody that starts podcast. It ain't Happening it ain't happen no no, I feel like I could record all day, every day, right, and still feel like I have so much more to cover and talk about and think about and say yeah, the more we talk about it. The more we, the deeper we go, the more is unreal and revealed to us right right. And the more Content you find when you dig into this stuff on deeper levels. So we can cover this like an onion. We could spend years talking about that one layer and then peel it back and just talk about the same things over again.

Speaker 1:

Right, absolutely.

Speaker 2:

And just keep doing that over and over again. I mean, masonry is an unending ending well of philosophical Discussion that covers the breadth of human experience through all time. We're never gonna run out of content, man.

Speaker 1:

That's not an issue for us and it's in line because last night one of the other things the brother said was that the recidicism rate In Masonry is is not great and the and the reason that the exit interview, the number one reason is it's not what I thought it was gonna be. And the reason why they say that is because we're not teaching the core, yeah, of what Masonry is, and he is very passionate about that. So that's what the young man coming into Masonry is looking for. He's looking for that thing that's greater than he is. He's looking for that higher level and Masonry is is rich in that and it's indispensable I believe in a young man's life is. This is training for life and a young man coming into it if he's given the actual, the actual truths, not the administrative truths, not the business meeting truths, not not any of that stuff, but the actual, esoteric Meaning of of what's in here. It is indispensable in helping a young man discover who he isn't, where he's going. And we have a lot of young men out there who Don't know who they are and they don't know where they're going. Therefore, they don't know what to do and I think Masonry has an answer for them.

Speaker 2:

It does, it has an answer. It answers every argument.

Speaker 1:

But do we know the answers? Because do we know the question and do we know the answers. As masons, I am gonna spend my time learning that and being able to accurately Articulate it to that younger generation, to bring them up.

Speaker 2:

Because if somebody when I was 35, if somebody had a really good, good explanation and reason for me to join Masonry, I might have, and if I did I believe my life would have been very, very different much Successful yeah, much more peaceful and happy some of the like original people that I really looked up to were older men I'm talking in their 80s who had been in Masonry since they were a 30 in their 30s and when I asked them, their only regret they said literally this guy said to me the only regret I have is that I didn't find this sooner. Yeah, I wish I had found. That's me and I spent more time in it.

Speaker 1:

I was 59 years old when I came to Masonry. I wish I was 39 when I did, or even 29. It would have made all the difference. It could have made all the difference in the world, you know, and and I. I can't go back in time, but I can be a part yet. Maybe we're never going back in time. Just letting you know that.

Speaker 2:

Never seen ever.

Speaker 1:

All right, Chris is going back.

Speaker 2:

I'm going baby.

Speaker 1:

He's gonna invest in Apple stock and he has gonna come back and we're gonna quit our jobs and do this full-time.

Speaker 2:

Yes yes, nice, get on that rather Okay, string theory, here I come all right.

Speaker 1:

So anyway, I Think we've beaten this one to death. This was a great episode. I really enjoyed this.

Speaker 2:

This is me too, yeah, and I think what, what you were just talking about there at the end is what we are always gonna come back to, which is we need to give people Some reason to be here. Yeah, we're not here to give them answers to anything, and that is, I think, a reason that people don't engage or speak up because they don't feel like I have the answer. So who am I to tell these people anything?

Speaker 1:

That's a great point.

Speaker 2:

But, brother, you're not here to give me answers. You're here to give them the tools to find the answers for themselves, and you can do that. You can do that for them that's right.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, there's a pathway, and and we can show you the pathway, but you got to walk it. Yep you got to walk that thing, man, but but we'll walk it with you because you know all of us are on that, on the same journey. I don't care what your, what your faith, tradition is. We're all still here together, and we are in fact because of humanity. We are in fact required to help and love and care for each other. I am my brother's keeper. I don't care what faith you're from. I don't care where you're from. You are your brother's keeper. Masonry has a very, very foundational system for Realizing that in your own life. Let's end on that positive. You got it, man.

Speaker 2:

All right, my brother, thank you.

Speaker 1:

We will see you all at Grand Lodge, and when we get back it'll be season two. We've got a big tech Curve to get over and that journey begins as soon as we we stop this show. It's Friday, so I yeah fry, yay. So I am going to be there for a whole lot of tech stuff that we're gonna be doing at Grand Lodge, and on the other side of it We'll do another podcast, our first one of season two, and I am so looking forward to it good, bad ugly, it's, it's coming, it's it's own and we're gonna do it and we'll, we'll, just, we'll just give you guys a report on the other side of it, chris we're out forward to it. See you soon. See you, man.

Exploring Masonry and Lessons Learned
Masonic Leadership and Future Concerns
Introducing Three Ruffians Cigars
Symbolism of Resurrection in Freemasonry
All-Seeing Eye Symbolism in Freemasonry
Exploring Open-Mindedness and Evolving Beliefs
Understanding Beliefs and Building Relationships
Importance of Balance in Masonry
Tech Journey at Grand Lodge

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