On The Level Podcast

Reflections from the Lodge Illuminating the Masonic Pursuit of Truth

January 27, 2024 Christopher Burns Season 2 Episode 22
On The Level Podcast
Reflections from the Lodge Illuminating the Masonic Pursuit of Truth
On The Level Podcast
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Embark on a masonic voyage with us as we reflect on a week steeped in ritual precision and the anticipation of future fraternity events. Picture yourself in the Sarasota area, cigars in hand, engaging in thought-provoking, esoteric discussions; this episode is an invitation to that unique camaraderie. Through a tapestry of stories and insights, we examine the weighty role of a Worshipful Master, the humility required to lead, and the art of conflict resolution within our ranks. As we congregate in lodge rooms or over the airwaves, it becomes evident: our dedication to the craft extends beyond regalia and gavels—it's about nurturing a culture of self-improvement and shared values.

Our dialogue traverses the rich heritage of Freemasonry, from its enigmatic oral traditions to the influence of Masonic precepts on historical luminaries like George Washington. We grapple with the responsibilities that accompany our oaths and the reverence due to the name of the Divine, tying in personal experiences that underscore the intersection of faith and fraternity. As we consider the evolution from eloquent orators to written edicts, we're reminded of the power of words, the sanctity of promises, and the lessons embedded in ancient Masonic charges—a testament to the unbroken lineage of wisdom we uphold.

In the whirlpool of political discourse, we advocate for a return to humility and education as cornerstones for meaningful conversation. Through the lens of Masonic tenets, we explore the dynamics of community involvement, the importance of upholding integrity in government, and the need for neighborly kindness above partisan divides. As our episode unfolds, we're not just recounting a week in the life of a modern Mason; we're building bridges, confronting challenges, and fostering understanding in an age where these actions matter more than ever. Join us for this intimate serial of fraternity, history, and the unwavering pursuit of enlightenment.

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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, alright, alright, love that intro.

Speaker 2:

Love it.

Speaker 1:

Gotta remember it's live. Can't talk till it's over.

Speaker 2:

I'm just so into it.

Speaker 1:

I was over here going ba-doo ba-doo, ba-doo, ba-doo.

Speaker 2:

Like uh, oh, they can hear that. They can hear that. I'm sorry.

Speaker 1:

New, it's just new, this is all new. And again, to reinforce what we always say, we have no idea what we're doing. So this works out well. I'm hearing a little echo on me. I don't know if that's actually coming through, so let me adjust. Hopefully it went away. Oh, I'm coming through, you Me, I'm echoing. Yeah, no, I am, I am echoing through your microphone. There we go. That's probably a little better. That's a really good, echo, fred, echo, echo. Now there's just no rabbit trail on echo. We're going, we're moving on, we're moving on. Ba-doo, ba-doo, ba-doo ba-doo, yeah right, shout out to Jimmy C who created that intro for us.

Speaker 2:

It's catchy man, it is catchy.

Speaker 1:

I'm always over, I'm liking it. I'm trying my best to rework the outro part so that it can just play seamlessly and then we can kind of go out in a almost professional sounding way. I don't know.

Speaker 2:

A bit of a pipe dream on my part, I suppose, long as we don't get fully professional, I'm fine with it.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, right, yeah Must remain amateurs for life Must remain our dedication to remain amateurish.

Speaker 2:

We'll be ignorant and foolish for all our days.

Speaker 1:

So what's going on, brother? I've had a busy week, man, I feel like you. Yeah, it's been crazy, crazy.

Speaker 2:

I was in three lodges this week already and we have a degree coming up tomorrow morning in another lodge. We have fourth lodge in less than a week. The district competition team, state competition team will be putting on an E8 degree at Liberty Lodge tomorrow.

Speaker 1:

Right, that's right.

Speaker 2:

If you can make it to Bradenton, well, it won't matter. It'll be over by the time you hear this. We did great Good job, Fred.

Speaker 1:

Awesome man. Wow, I only messed up like three of my four parts. I did it Perfect. No, it's not real. Positive affirmation.

Speaker 2:

I did it great. I nailed it. I've never worked with a team quite so dedicated, so I'm really excited about it, yeah.

Speaker 1:

I agree, I agree, it was, I was. I know this to be true because I was really disappointed when we had to cancel our team practice on. Was that Wednesday night? Yeah, wednesday night.

Speaker 2:

We now have people coming to learn as we practice, so there was a lot of disappointed people that we canceled that. Oh, bummer but that's how it goes. When you got like eight people, it's hard to coordinate schedules on a very consistent basis.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

But we've we're getting started early. We have a great head start on this, yeah.

Speaker 1:

I agree.

Speaker 2:

Then we have. Well we we missed the table lodge at Hillsboro Lodge, unfortunately.

Speaker 1:

I know, yeah, that just couldn't make it, could not pull it off. Shout out to to to Carol out there.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, our bad Sorry brother, great Missing that, but that's what being busy looks like. So we have our district, our district, 23 fundraiser coming up Uh, which is going to be a cornhole tournament at Saheb Shrine.

Speaker 1:

Yep, yep.

Speaker 2:

Uh, that's in a couple of weeks now and, yeah, our district picnics coming up. We actually get to go participate in a master Mason degree at Hillsboro Lodge later this month.

Speaker 1:

Nice. That I'm looking forward to.

Speaker 2:

Man, I can't wait to do ritual in that lodge.

Speaker 1:

Right, right With those brothers. I can't wait to witness it and sit.

Speaker 2:

It's just sitting on the sidelines. Good luck with that. You know you're not going to be sitting on the sidelines.

Speaker 1:

I'm going to be sitting on the side. I will not be roped into anything.

Speaker 2:

I don't know anything.

Speaker 1:

I don't know anything, all right.

Speaker 2:

So none of us do. That doesn't stop us.

Speaker 1:

We still do the work. I would be mortified to mess up as badly as I'm capable of doing in that beautiful lodge building. I would it would be like that would be like going to Carnegie Hall as a musician and totally like dropping your clarinet on your foot, you know yeah.

Speaker 2:

And cursing out loud Get this clown out here. Yeah.

Speaker 1:

No, no, that's not going to happen, but I will be there on the sidelines cheering on my brethren as they perform perfectly Well. I shouldn't call it performance, because it's not really a performance.

Speaker 2:

No, we have another esoteric discussion coming up at my house this month. Yeah, that's right.

Speaker 1:

I was going to ask you where it was.

Speaker 2:

I didn't put it anywhere, yet I've been a little busy, so I got to figure out when that is and post that online. If you're anywhere in the area near Sarasota, email Chris at on the level of Fred and Chriscom, or Fred on the level of Fred and Chriscom. Come out to one of our esoteric discussion group nights. We do it. It's part of our district 23 commitment. All the masters have made this year to do more things together. This is one of the awesome ones. Where we get together, there is cigar smoking and there is a drink of choice having. But the main point is to talk about how we can relate Freemasonry to our life in a positive way, and we do talk about very specific esoteric things. Depending on who shows up, we always seem to have at least an enter apprentice.

Speaker 1:

So right, so usually go past that level. Yeah, yeah.

Speaker 2:

With the esoteric, specific things.

Speaker 1:

Because it's a closed group. Right, we can, we can we have, we can talk openly about, you know, the Masonry which cannot be spoken of here, like on the podcast. So if our lowest degree yeah Is where we're, we're stuck and of course, we're always glad when he is come. Love it so far so far, all of the esoteric discussions have been based in have not gone past the degree Right Right, not in any kind of detail detail yeah.

Speaker 2:

But it was cool because at the last one we met an EA from Manatee Lodge who then we got to go.

Speaker 1:

Shout out to brother Booth. Wait, he's a fellow craft, sorry, he is a fellow craft, my bad.

Speaker 2:

He was a fellow craft. When we met him he came to an esoteric discussion group and became friends and yeah, william Booth and his his brother actually are all did a fellow craft give back just this past. That was one of the lodges, I think Monday night Right, we got to go sit and watch and watch him do that and forgot to speak publicly. That was a total. I crashed.

Speaker 1:

I crashed Not one of my better, I don't know why I did. I've done that presentation about our our cigar fundraiser through three Ruffians, you know, a couple of times and it went great, man, and I don't know what happened. I just stepped up to the plate and that ball went whizzing by me and I swung so hard I missed it.

Speaker 2:

Well, and that lodge that night had 11 past masters. That's right, so it was a lot of bit. There's a bit more heat in that room than you're probably used to, and and that was the first.

Speaker 1:

Was that the first meeting, the first?

Speaker 2:

with their new Warsaw master, with the new with the whole new everything. Yeah, the new environment there. I think that this is their second meeting, but the first one was total chaos, so this is their first real meeting.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and that was great, and everybody said it was just the weight was lifted and there was just well it was. There was masonry going on there, which was pretty cool.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I mean, people probably generally have no idea what we're talking about, but this lodge had some issues, as we all have some issues in our lodges.

Speaker 1:

Correct.

Speaker 2:

And it was just a little more difficult than ours. There were some issues with their worst master, who was removed, and a new master was appointed by the grand master, so who happens to be a past master, and just so much going on there. You just, it's such a great feeling to sit with a group of guys who are all coming together for a common purpose, which is the betterment of their brothers in the lodge, which is our home, our home away from home. That's what they kept saying. This is our home.

Speaker 1:

We treat it like our home. Yeah, that's right.

Speaker 2:

We have to fix it up.

Speaker 1:

We got to clean it we got to take care of it like it's our home. Yeah, and, and you know just my appreciation to our leadership for doing the hard work.

Speaker 2:

It's so refreshing.

Speaker 1:

They did the hard thing, which is the unpopular thing, the hard thing but the very necessary thing, and they did it, and we were able to witness the fruit of that.

Speaker 2:

Yes.

Speaker 1:

Meeting where there was some brotherly love such positive some positive stuff going on.

Speaker 2:

So thank you to, to our grand master and we're doing the hard work from us, the gladiators and the pit, for your entertainment, when we see the leadership doing accountability right it's really encouraging to us in the pits. Yeah, we feel wow, ok, we're part of an organization that takes some pride in itself.

Speaker 1:

Right, because, like I've always said, you know, if we don't take ourselves seriously, why should anybody else? You know, why should anybody from the outside look at us in a serious way if we don't take ourselves seriously? So yeah, that was, that was. That was a great day for Masonry in Florida.

Speaker 2:

It is great because, while there were problems, apparently I don't know the details, so I can't speak to them and we wouldn't. Yeah, I mean, it's not my place, but everyone knows the master who was removed and everyone likes him. I mean generally you know it isn't Masonry, no, but not. It's hard to find anyone that everybody likes.

Speaker 1:

Right, right, but he's. He's still a brother and we still love him.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, highly have been talk well about him and who. He's very welcome there, as he would be in our lodge.

Speaker 1:

We all yeah, that's right.

Speaker 2:

He's actually awesome, fun, rich list to do work with too. But for whatever reason, this happened and so it's. It's a struggle on a group of officers for that kind of change in situation and the leadership switching that late in the game. It's stressful, but to every everybody else in the outside you look at a situation like that and you say this is good, at least we have some standards.

Speaker 1:

I don't know what the situation is.

Speaker 2:

But I imagine for the Grand Master to take some action that he took, he had to feel very confident in the decisions he was making.

Speaker 1:

Yep.

Speaker 2:

I'm sure everybody listening has been in situations where you see people in a situation of leadership and you're just wondering how are they just getting away with this?

Speaker 1:

Right, how is nobody doing anything about this? And nobody's doing anything.

Speaker 2:

I mean, and maybe they are, but to you in the pits, who don't know anything and just see what you see, it looks a lot like you could do anything. No one will touch you.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

And that's a discouraging, disheartening thing to deal with. So when you see action being taken, it's it does really make you perk up a little and walk a little taller. When you wear a masonic pen in public and feel like, yeah, I'm a Mason, we have standards.

Speaker 1:

We have standards and and we're and we're living by them. You know, and and our hope, this show on the level of Fred and Chris, our hope I know I speak for you, chris, when I say that our hope is that all will be restored to brotherly love, yes, relief and truth.

Speaker 2:

It's in our hands to make it happen.

Speaker 1:

That's right we want, we want all to pass the past master, the lodge itself, everybody to to come to terms and let's be stronger over this and move forward. And you know it, things like this are going to happen in the future and because we're men, we're flawed. You know we are. We're chipping away on on those things. We're chipping away on those corners, man, but you know we're. A perfect ashlar does not mean flawless. A flawless ashlar is useless for a building because it's too smooth and concrete doesn't stick to it. But a perfect ashlar and we said this on the show before refers to being useful to the master, and that's what we want to do. Chipping away, chip away, man, chip it away every day. Work on those things in your life that you could do better to help your fellow man, a brother, a brother Mason, and anybody in this world. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you and circumscribe those, those vices and super fluidities of of this life, and square. Square your work, man. You know that's my favorite saying. I want to say that to everybody, dude square your work, man. Come on, I've been a square my whole life. Well, now you're. Now you're the fourth part of a square brother the fourth part of the circle.

Speaker 2:

Well, you know I mean just. The last thing I'll say about that particular topic is it is sends a good message to all leadership in masonry in Florida. When you're in a position of leadership, you are presumed to have done a lot of work on yourself to get to that point.

Speaker 1:

Right.

Speaker 2:

And you're in a position where you're an example for others to follow. We literally say that the master of the lodge is giving light to the craft and the structure them, and work, and so, as a worship master of the lodge, you're a servant of the lodge in the craft you are not a king, right that is not a throne you sit upon, that is a chair that you're warming for the next guy and that chair belongs to the craft right, not to you. You're the person lucky enough to occupy time in the space for a time. Your name will go in those books that the secretary is writing in for all the future of your lodge to see what you did and I know I mean I myself had on masonic conduct when I was sitting in the east one day early on. One of my first meetings met have been my second meeting. I wrote to make an honorary member of past district deputy and there was a black ball situation which I'm probably not supposed to talk about in detail. Yeah, but at all that's not too detail but you know, there was a situation that arose that I lost my temper enough to kind of scold my own lodge.

Speaker 1:

Right.

Speaker 2:

And what are you guys doing here? Okay, okay, well, it wasn't so much. What I said is my attitude and you know all that stuff matters. I think when you're in leadership, especially in a volunteer organization, people are here because they love it. They're not here because they're getting paid. They're not right here because they're getting any kind of credit and their their wife's not going to look at them any Any better because they're doing this stuff. It really is out of passion and love, and you have to remember that, that you're dealing with people that are really passionate about something and they love it and that means it's theirs and their mind and you're the leader. It's not yours, the Freemasonry isn't yours. And your lodge, when you're the master, to tell everybody to do it your way, it's supposed to be a group of guys working together, trying to find common ground. Work together, right Harmony. How many times do we hear it over and over again in ritual? We hear it every time we open a lodge and every time we close a lodge. It's about harmony. Yeah, that's right being focused on that. If you're a master or if you're thinking about becoming a master or you're working in the line, spend your time in the line to work on yourself and learn the systems of Freemasonry better so you can be the best master possible when you get into the East.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and I think that if you're a past Wordful Master who can look back on his year and say that it was that the lodge benefited from it and others could say that you had a good year you did well, then you're a special person. Because it is challenging, you must balance, like you were just saying, chris. You must be able to balance a need to get things done, a need to be disciplined, with the ability to inspire men to follow you down this road, even though they're not required to.

Speaker 2:

There's no you know it's a volunteer organization.

Speaker 1:

They are not required to follow you.

Speaker 2:

They can vote with their feet and they will yeah and they will and they will.

Speaker 1:

But if you can inspire men through your own conduct and through your rhetoric you know your words and your inspiration then you're good at it. Man, you're a good leader and your year will prove that you know. And anybody who's been a past master can look back on their year and reflect on hey, what kind of a leader was I? You know and make the appropriate changes if necessary, and or?

Speaker 2:

That's the key. If make the appropriate, that's the key it really is. You have to be ready to adapt and change, even when you're in the East. You have work to do still on yourself, right.

Speaker 1:

Absolutely.

Speaker 2:

That mistake I made could have been it was so early on in my careers the Warshville Master of the Lodge. It could have really set the tone for the whole year.

Speaker 1:

Right.

Speaker 2:

So my first thought immediately as I was driving home is how am I going to fix this? So, I apologized to everybody that was there that night personally and at the next dated meeting I apologized again and talked about how I realized that that wasn't the best way to behave and I hope no one follows my example. And you know, I think that's the best thing you can do. If you fall, you get back on the wagon.

Speaker 1:

You know, just keep dragging. No, that's right. But what you did was a true sign of real leadership, see, because everybody in the Lodge who saw and heard that entire thing realized that if the Warshville Master is willing to humble himself, admit he was wrong in front of everybody and work to move forward and better himself and the Lodge, then what's my excuse? Right, I'm sitting on the, I'm sitting in the sidelines, you know I'm attending Lodge. But what's what's my excuse? I'm holding some, some grudge against a brother from a hundred years ago and it's affecting. it's affecting my Lodge brothers, it's affecting other Lodges. Yeah, you know what?

Speaker 2:

probably affecting you personally too, and totally, I'm sure, affecting you personally.

Speaker 1:

You know, and, and, and, it's just unmasonic.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, it is.

Speaker 1:

Humility. I'm sorry, guys, but this, this is a fraternity where some, some humility and self reflection is in fact required. You won't survive. You'll end up with a reputation like so many, like many men have in masonry that you, you really don't want.

Speaker 2:

There's nothing wrong with drive and ambition.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, oh, we got to have it. We're men, of course, yeah.

Speaker 2:

But you have to temper that with some kind of humbleness.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, absolutely.

Speaker 2:

And correct yourself as much as possible.

Speaker 1:

Right, right, I love it, I love it, that's what it's all about, and we're always doing it.

Speaker 2:

I'm sure even in the grand line, those brothers are making mistakes too, probably, and I hope they're doing the same thing we're trying to do here, which is just correct yourself and be an example of how to handle yourself when you do, maybe do something that's not as misonic as you wish you would have done it. Don't leave it alone. Go back and apologize. Be an example for people. I'm able to do it because I saw someone do it and I was so impressed that I said I will always try to behave like this person, because I think it's an avatar of masonry to me when I see someone do like what Doug Dobbs did.

Speaker 1:

Uh-huh.

Speaker 2:

Right, worshipal, worshipal.

Speaker 1:

Right, worshipal, worshipal.

Speaker 2:

Stand up at a master mason association meeting and say some uncomfortable private things that is not easy to say about his lodge in front of other lodges and try to use it for learning so that everyone else can learn lessons Like there you go. Now we're doing masonry. We take a negative and we try to turn it into a learning experience and grow. Yeah, that's right Because we all will fall, we will all make mistakes. And we will all let the emotions get the best of us. Sooner or later it will happen to you, whoever you are.

Speaker 1:

Right, and you set the tone for mercy and grace. So and grace is one of the most powerful forces, when understood correctly, there is you set the tone for mercy and grace. Therefore, mistakes can be made.

Speaker 2:

Yes.

Speaker 1:

Without fear of, you know, of detrimental, reprisal, and in that is where creativity lives and breathes and grows, within an environment of grace and forgiveness and love. To put yourself out there as a person who thinks he's an artist, that remains to be seen. But when you put yourself out there creatively, with creativity, you're putting a piece of your heart out into the world. And when you do that in an environment where there is love and grace and mercy, creativity just flourishes and grows. And from creativity comes great things. And you know, even even in our lodge, you can see it like the our charitable, our charity committee.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, they're trying a lot, they're trying all kinds of different stuff.

Speaker 1:

And it's you know and you know they're, they're trial and error and and just working through stuff and everybody's just like giving each other, you know, a break in love to grow and to create and to be be creative. You know, I think, the movie night between the two lodges started started that way.

Speaker 2:

It was just an idea. It was a big letdown to everybody. That first one we I was anticipating four times more people, probably six times more money being made and in reality we had like 60 people show up, which I guess you could say is a good number.

Speaker 1:

but I was expecting like 200.

Speaker 2:

And we sold some stuff and we basically just paid for the costs of the thing, all the expenses. Nobody made any money and the wind was let out of people sales. But did we let that? We're never doing this again. It was a failure. No, we saw how many kids were playing in the park with each other that didn't know each other before. We saw couples coming out with bottles of wine and food and sit and have a picnic outside and watch a movie.

Speaker 1:

Wow.

Speaker 2:

And you know, our, our brothers and sisters were there with their families, parked in trucks, sitting in the back of the you know the bed, watching the movie with pillows, and you're like, okay, this is something we're, this is something that, even if we're not making money, is doing good right Doing good for our lodges, doing good for our brothers to work together, doing good for the community. This has to continue and we have every month since.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I would love to see people take this idea which is not a new idea with us, but but maybe take away from the show today that thought. You know, the humility and self reflection leads to just a huge, a huge bounty of good ideas, of just a culture of creativity that creates these ideas and and flourishes and and and brotherly love prevails and grows, and this is what makes Masonry very unique, you know, and I think it's, it's, it's what's going to bring us into, you know, the future. You know as we grow, because it, like it says in our promo, if Fred and Chris have anything to say about it, well then, masonry will be on the ascendancy, it will.

Speaker 2:

it will grow but it will become that's right, it will come back. I still think of Seinfeld every time I hear it, I don't know why. Or friends, I don't know, I get both in there.

Speaker 1:

Anyways, listen. If you've been inspired by listening to us, then then then go be the change, go to your lodge and affect some change. Some small thing, some great thing, whatever it is, it's your lodge, it's your Masonic career. Get out there and build something strong man.

Speaker 2:

If you start making suggestions and trying things, other people will feel more inclined to do the same.

Speaker 1:

That's right.

Speaker 2:

And failure is a part of success. I don't, people don't talk about that enough.

Speaker 1:

Right, yeah, it's it's because we don't have that, that drive, that long suffering. I love that word Long suffering. We, we don't as soon as some. We try something, it fails one time and then we give up. Don't give up.

Speaker 2:

But don't give up. Learn. That's a learning opportunity, that's right. Why did we fail? What went wrong there?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, that's right.

Speaker 2:

You come back and do something else and don't make those mistakes again. Right You'll, you'll get to success.

Speaker 1:

And that only survives in that, in that environment of love and grace where you're allowed to make a mistake and we're allowed to come back together and say, all right, this work, that didn't. Let's move on, let's be creative, let's make something great happen. So enough of that. What do we? What are we working on this episode? We've gone through. We've gone through a lot. We've gone through the master Mason, Sorry. We've gone through the mentors manual.

Speaker 2:

Yes, all three degrees.

Speaker 1:

And then we've gone through the lectures, all three degrees, what we could, what we could, what we could do and some day we'll go back to different. we're going to cherry pick out some of our favorite concepts in the mentors manual and dig deeper into them and and do shows based on that stuff, deeper and deeper. So if you got any particular pieces of the mentors manual that you really like maybe you know you, you really like the teachings about the square you know, or the working tools of a particular degree or whatever, just shout out to us, email us and let us know and we'll dig into it as best we can. Or maybe bring on guests who know it better than we do and and we'll we'll put that out there.

Speaker 2:

But for today we are going to go through the Well, once you go through the A degree in free Masonry and you receive your lecture, it's not over. The last thing that will happen is you're going to receive a charge and somebody's going to stand there and talk to you and basically give you a charge, which are the last things you're going to hear about that degree before you go home.

Speaker 1:

That's right.

Speaker 2:

So we thought we would do the entered apprentice charge.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I like it. Now there's charges for all three degrees.

Speaker 2:

They are written out in the blue monitor book in the state of Florida that is correct, completely written out. There are no secrets here. There are no but secrets it actually could. It can be read from during the A lot of lodges they do read it because they don't have someone who's. They're not lucky enough to have someone have memorized it.

Speaker 1:

Well, and I think it's. It says that it may be read, I think maybe because it's so important.

Speaker 2:

It does say in the mentors manual that it should always be done and it should always be done by memory, if you, if you're lucky enough to have a brother in the room, that that has a memorized, but it is okay as a lacer's or to read it.

Speaker 1:

Understood.

Speaker 2:

That actually says that in the mentors manual.

Speaker 1:

I'm assuming that you do have it memorized.

Speaker 2:

I have at some point in my life.

Speaker 1:

Yes, so I have it here in front of me. We can so. Do you want to do? You want to recite it or do you want me to read it? That's the question. And don't feel All right, all right, go and, and I I will correct you if necessary as you as you go. The entered apprentice charge, as recited by Worshiful Chris Burns.

Speaker 2:

See that first sense, my brother, as you are now introduced into the first principles of free masonry. I congratulate you on being accepted into this ancient and honorable fraternity. Darn close, not even close.

Speaker 1:

Darn close. I congratulate you on your admission into this ancient and honorable order. Keep going Ancient, as having existed from time. Immorial.

Speaker 2:

Honorable. Honorable as Standing in every particular, so to render all men who will be conformable to its precepts.

Speaker 1:

You know, this is the same but different, and I'm desperately searching this page to find the word Florida Grand Lodge. I'm not finding it and I'm just hoping. I'm hoping that this is a Florida document in front of me. Gosh, we really are not professionals All right, so Florida document. Well, it it's very close, but there are. The words are a little bit different, so I don't know if you're.

Speaker 2:

You're never this off. No, I think what I'm saying is correct.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, yeah, all right, all right, all right. Generally entertain as I grab the monitor.

Speaker 2:

Oh, entertain, yes, the monitor. Oh, you have a monitor with you. There you go. So what you're saying is you had brought, you had printed this out and brought it, and you're not entirely sure you got this from Florida.

Speaker 1:

I when I first became amazing in the Enter to Prentice degree, we were not my group that came through, we were. We were pushed through. We've talked about this on the show. We were pushed through pretty, pretty quickly. So my I endeavored to go back and and research and learn everything myself, and this is the first document I got offline and the Enter to Prentice charge. But I went back shortly after and realized a bunch of the documents that I did download were from Texas and I'm just wondering if this is the Enter to Prentice charge from the fair state, once great state of Texas. So let me do this. I'm going to look up as Chris entertains you Doing a great job there too, brother. Thanks, man Appreciate that Page 61 of the monitor. Oh boy, this is great. Love it.

Speaker 2:

So in the first paragraph we're saying it's ancient as having existed from time and memorial.

Speaker 1:

Well, keep in mind that Texas free masonry is ancient and accepted masonry.

Speaker 2:

Well, I'm for sure that that's in our Florida ritual.

Speaker 1:

No, I mean it's not free and accepted masonry.

Speaker 2:

It's ancient, it's ancient. Whatever the difference is Colorado as well.

Speaker 1:

I just found out, all right, so I'm going to put this away and I'm going to read it directly from our little blue book, the Florida Masonic Monitor. Let's start again, brother. What do you say Now?

Speaker 2:

read it from the blue monitor Brothers, as you are now introduced into the first principles of free masonry.

Speaker 1:

I congratulate you on being accepted into this ancient and honorable order.

Speaker 2:

Very different, All right, go Ancient as having existed from time and memorial honorable, is tending, in every particular so, to render all men who will be conformable to its precepts. No institution was ever raised on a better principle or on a more solid foundation, nor were ever more excellent rules and useful maxims laid down as they're inculcated in the several masonic lectures. The greatest and best of men in all ages have been encouragers and supporters of the art and have never deemed it derogatory to their dignity to level themselves with the fraternity, extend their privileges and patronize its assemblies. There are three great duties, which is the Mason you are charged to inculcate. So I'm really surprised at how similar yeah, when I looked at it I said yeah, that looks right. Yeah, the details are wrong.

Speaker 1:

Well, it's just the words and structure is different, but the intent is exactly the same. Yeah, isn't that amazing.

Speaker 2:

Yeah. So right at the beginning we're saying Freemasonry is ancient as having existed from time and immemorial, right. So what does time, immemorial mean? Ancient as having existed from time immemorial, and honorable as tending in every particular time immemorial, according to the Oxford language dictionary, means used to refer to a point in of time in the past that was so long ago that people have no knowledge or memory of it. So we're saying Freemasonry has existed from before recorded history.

Speaker 1:

Right Now. We talked last show, or the show before, about how Pythagoras was a Mason.

Speaker 2:

Well, his ideas are part of Masonry. I don't know if he was a Mason, oh, okay, okay, I don't think we said that that would be from time, that would be from a long time. But it would be.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, but I think, even though we can clearly track Masonry to about 350 years ago, where you have actual empirical evidence 1717.

Speaker 2:

1717. I believe from the Grand Lodge officially became a public thing in England. Right, right so that's not time immemorial.

Speaker 1:

Well, based on that definition it could be, because it's tough. It's hard to know 200 years ago what was on the minds and intentions of people. I mean, it's tough to go 200 years back. So I think it is having existed from time immemorial. In other words, it's ancient, having existed from time immemorial. The explanation of ancient is it's not 8,000 years old, but it's ancient in that it goes back far enough to where it's been memorialized in what it is. So I know, for instance, the degree that I went through here in Florida is basically the same degree that General George Washington went through when he did his.

Speaker 2:

Right, yeah, and the one he did, but that was in the 1700s.

Speaker 1:

Well, when he was a young man. I know that, that he did it 1776, he was an old man, so probably, yeah, probably, very early from 17 in the early 1700s is when he would have done that and I'm sure he was able to look back on Mason's if had he looked into the craft, you know he was able to look back to the brothers in Scotland and and and other places. You see them online all the time. These, these things that pop up about Mason's from long, long ago. So, I think that's what it's. It's it's, it's memorialized and that's what we mean by ancient. We don't mean. I don't think anybody says that King Solomon was a Mason. Okay, Maybe there are some people who say that, but we use the, you know, king Solomon and Solomon's temple and the teachings of King Solomon In masonry very. You know, we use it a lot. I mean it's a, it's a huge part of our teaching.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, a lot of moral lessons. The moral lessons and the allegories characters in the.

Speaker 1:

Old Testament, correct, correct, but nobody is saying that. You know that. Hire him a Biff.

Speaker 2:

The King of Tyre were were masons who went through the same a degree that I went. Yeah, right, nobody's saying that took obligation. Right, heard these charges.

Speaker 1:

So I think what that's doing is it's explaining what they mean by ancient.

Speaker 2:

Well, what's interesting? I just looked on Wikipedia. Oh good time immemorial, there's actually a date, for according to English law, they've assigned a date and said after that date is, it's a memorial and after this date it's common law. So time immemorial is frequently used to describe the time required for a custom to mature into common law. Medieval Historians describe this as the watershed between a primarily oral culture and a world where writing was common.

Speaker 1:

Oh.

Speaker 2:

So in English law time immemorial ends and legal memory begins at 1189. Why?

Speaker 1:

1189 does it say?

Speaker 2:

it's the end of the reign of King Henry II. Okay who was associated with the invention of the English common law. Okay so common law, so oral law, oral tradition, common written law. Okay apparently in England that's the delineation 1189 and I don't know, I don't know no Well they're that specific in their reference here to time immemorial. But well, he's been curious about it.

Speaker 1:

Well, you know the, the, the classic education through Aristotle, which is, you know, plato and and Socrates and and all of them, there was. There was no writing as a matter of fact. That's why Socrates was rejected and ultimately, ultimately, he has. He lost his life over the fact that he was teaching children how to read Right and because everything was oral tradition. It was all handed down, just like we do in masonry. We hand these things down through oral tradition. You memorize your parts that you do from somebody else who's done them before you. This is oral tradition. But but when? When there was a shift, it was a major shift in society in the world regarding education, when we went from those oral traditions that were handed down by orators. These were great men who came to your town and spoke these words and you took them home in your memory and taught them to your Children and the people in your community, to where now we had scribes Writing these things down. Yeah and then passing them down through through writing and, of course, the scribe was taken from. You know, from Jewish history is where the scribe scribes came from, and and that becoming so, it makes sense that around 1100 ish according to 1189, according to 1189, but it's all tied to law.

Speaker 2:

So they're saying that's the year where we had our first Law that was produced by a leader and written down and recorded as a law Right prior to that, all laws were just based on society and oral tradition. You know common law. So, we have common law marriage which is like oh, you live together long enough, you're married, yeah that's a, that's a modern definition of of it. But yeah, yeah, you know what I'm saying. It's different than the law where you've got to go fill out a document, because Somebody said this is the procedure that has to happen in order for a marriage to take place. So that's interesting. 1189, I have an answer.

Speaker 1:

No institution was ever raised on better principles or more solid foundations, hmm, nor were ever more excellent rules, and useful maxims laid down then are inculcated in the several Masonic lectures which we just went through very true. Yeah, very true, and it if, again, we just admonish everyone out there to To open up your your books and read the the lectures and study them and understand. If you want to understand masonry and what it's trying to do for you and what it, what you should be doing for your lodge and your community and your faith, then that's where you'll find most of it. You'll find it in those lectures.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, you want to be the best mason possible. Learn the lectures.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and it's. It's like I would say know what you believe and why you believe it. Well, that's where you go to find that out. So, and and the why is the really important part of that. Why do I believe that? Why am I a mason?

Speaker 2:

not willing to learn the lectures. Don't fall asleep when you go see them in degrees.

Speaker 1:

Listen, yeah well, that's, you'll learn something. Well, that's what I'm doing. Every time I hear a lecture the next day, I read it so that it just comes right back into my mind and I'm finding that just by by being exposed to this and then and then Exposing myself to reading it afterwards, I'm I'm just it's just becoming part of my memory. Yeah, I'm not one. I'm not real good at sitting down and Purposely memorizing stuff. I'm just not good at that but not either. Yeah, that's, that's not me, but the more I'm exposed to it being done in front of me and then reading it. You know those two gates, the, the ear gate. And the eye and mind gate which is reading right you get, you get better and better, and I don't know why we went down that particular rabbit hole. These great the greatest and best of men in all ages have have been in courageers and promoters of the art. What art.

Speaker 2:

We call free masonry our art.

Speaker 1:

It's a craft that we perfect artesians yeah, and I, yeah, I like that because I Loved it when I first came to masonry and they called it the craft that really resonated with me. You know that it's a. It's a craft in my mind.

Speaker 2:

I heard witchcraft. Oh really when I, when they would say craft and it was kind of like a Turned me off. When they said craft, I was like, hmm, that seems weird. Huh but I've learned it does has nothing to do with witchcraft. No, it's a skill, it's a learned skill, it's a skill you continue to learn and use art and crafts right, it doesn't mean witchcraft, it means crafts that you do with skill.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, absolutely. Have encouraged a photo of the art and have never deemed it derogatory to their dignity To level themselves with the fraternity, extend their privileges and patronize their assemblies.

Speaker 2:

So they're saying the greatest men in all ages have been free masons and they didn't find it a Bad thing to sit in lodge with brothers and not be held to the titles and privileges they had in the world outside the lodge. They had no problem sitting with their brothers as just a brother, and If they had time and money, they gave it, and if they could make it to the meetings, they went, because that's the. That's what we do. That's how we show our love for the fraternity. We do things that maybe aren't the most fun and exciting things to do, but we do it for the lodge, yeah, for a lodge for the craft. That's how we can give back.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I love that they never deemed it derogatory to their dignity to level themselves with the fraternity that's right. Whoever you are, whoever you were, Washington's great example.

Speaker 2:

One of the greatest men in all ages, and he had no problem sitting in lodge with brothers. Whether he was the master or an officer or just a past master on the sidelines. I'm sure it was tough to sit in lodge with George Washington, not feel like, wow, look at this guy.

Speaker 1:

Well, I think he was. Well. I don't know the exact dates and I'm sure this is a Point of contention amongst Masons, but from what I understand he was, he was raised to. He was introduced to Masonry as a young man. Hmm, yeah, and, and then would have been a master Mason. As he went into his career, his military career would have brought Masonry in with him.

Speaker 2:

We should do a whole podcast on the creation of our country and the players. Oh, that would love that or Masonic, and where some of the key things happened, which there's some great books out there, yeah there's some really great books out there too, and guys that have have done some of the research.

Speaker 1:

Maybe we'll get with them and try to put together a series about this Masonic experiment that was put together by these men. We know their names and some of us know of their history and their, their lives and stuff, but Do we do we know Truly about you know why they? Why were they Masons? You know what? What was the importance of Masonry in the lives of Patrick Henry and and these, you know these men who risked everything. They lost everything.

Speaker 2:

Imagine if somebody would have everything over what they did, sat down with them, spent some time interviewing them.

Speaker 1:

Right in questions, right it's joy.

Speaker 2:

How did you learn about this as a child? Like, wow, that would be incredible to be able to hear read that interview. Yeah, that's right, it's why you're gonna hear us interviewing leaders. That's right so that we can learn about their history and why they're here and maybe we should once in a while.

Speaker 1:

You know the inspiring young Mason. We should interview them in case they go on to be a great that's your leader, right? They can look back and bear an embarrassment at the early and embarrassment like why on earth did I ever get hooked up with those two knucklehead? There are three great duties which, as a Mason, you are charged to inculcate.

Speaker 2:

To God, your neighbor and yourself To God, and never mentioning his name, but with that reverential, all which is due from a creature to its creator, to implore his aid in all your laudable undertakings and to esteem him as the chief. Good that's so good. There's a lot there.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, well, let me confess something. So you know, everyone knows my, my particular religious background and you know, taking the Lord's name in vain is an interesting, an interesting concept. You know, and this is what it's talking about using God's name needlessly or disrespectfully Is never a good idea and and it's, it's been a struggle of mine for my whole life, christian life, and it's really been, you know, and it's it's something that you know, the, the Jews, they, they had a Custom where they would not pronounce God's word fully, god's name fully, which is Yahweh, which means I am, or the great I am.

Speaker 2:

But they, they would pronounce it. Yeah, just speak of God's name. In that time period was Especially like it was uncommon, right, like you didn't say the name because it had such a power to it.

Speaker 1:

Well, they they. They would not speak his name because of his greatness, in honor of him, they would not Speak his full name. So instead of Yahweh, they would say here Yahweh is the the name that that they would use because they held it in such high esteem, and and we're encouraged as well not to use that name In any way. That is dishonoring, you know, and and as Americans, in my mind, for me, this is, this is my opinion I was using that name in all the wrong ways, you know. And then the funny thing is is that when I saw this in masonry, I Don't get it, but it was coming to masonry and reading this and seeing this charge and having that charge read to me, I guess, and my obligation, you know, to uphold the precepts and concepts of masonry, it has, it has made the difference for me and I have found my language to be much different With regard to, you know my, the way I want to honor God's name in my life, you know.

Speaker 2:

And.

Speaker 1:

I just think that's it's, that's a testimony to. You know how the the concepts and precepts of masonry will make you a better Fill in the blank husband, you know, father, and for me, churchmen, you know, it's making me a better Christian, because the concepts that I see in here are are easily applied to one's life, or easily understood maybe not easily applied, but certainly easily understood in their concepts, so that one who wants to apply these concepts to their life can do so fairly easily.

Speaker 2:

I was just reading about taking the Lord's name in vain that you were talking about yes again on Wikipedia, and what it does say is that the most common interpretation, from the biblical perspective, yeah of one of the Ten Commandments, right, second the second of the Ten Commandments.

Speaker 1:

Yes, I believe so. First or second, you really put yourself out there. Second, it's the second. Do not. Do not take the Lord's name of a. He will not hold him guiltless.

Speaker 2:

Well, what they're? The most common interpretation is that it's invoking God's name in an oath was considered a guarantee of statement or a promise, correct? So they're saying don't like, swear on God's name and lie, because that's really right, right using right, getting angry and using the phrase Gd is Certainly not.

Speaker 1:

it's not appropriate. Okay, I'm not saying that, but what you're talking about is the true definition of it, yeah, which is that it was a. It was a guarantee of truthfulness, if you right spoke his name Right and the Lord said in the Beatitudes that you have heard it said oh Boy, now I can't even remember it anyways, at that in the book I think what you're talking about is the book in the books of Daniel and revelation Include instances where angels actually swore using God's name To invoke the truth of apocalyptic revelations.

Speaker 2:

So they would say God said something, and then they'd say that, and so that was like a qualifier of truth on what they said. God himself is presented swearing by his own name.

Speaker 1:

Surely there's no other name higher for him to swear by by his own.

Speaker 2:

It's a guarantee, certain, the certainty of certain events that were foretold by the Prophet. So even in, even from God and angels, they use his name as as we do when we swear an oath that what we're about to say is truthful and you can take it to the bank. But I think what you referenced was more of what the Hebrew passages refer to and God's name being profaned by hypocritical behavior of people and false Representation of God's word or character. So in that sense they're saying Taking the Lord's name in vain means you're saying it, presenting yourself to be a true and correct follower, but you're not acting like a true and correct follower of the God that he was named.

Speaker 1:

You used to try to convince people You're a good person right, I found it, let me, let me, let me read it. So it's on oaths and it says again you have heard it said of old, and this is talking about the second commandment. You shall not swear falsely, and that's the interpretation of you, won't, you shall not swear falsely, because that is taking the Lord's name in vain.

Speaker 2:

That's an interpretation of the.

Speaker 1:

I say to you do not take an oath at all, either by heaven, for it is the throne of God, or by the earth, for it is the footstool, it is his footstool, or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of a great king. Do not take an oath by your head, for you cannot make one hair white or black. Let let what you say Simply be yes or no. Anything more than that comes from evil. So in other words, don't make oaths. I'll swear, I'll do this. I'll swear just yes or no, and mean it be truth, be honest and truthful you know and and there's no reason for an oath, because you know, you know as well as I do. When somebody's really swearing it up, oh man, I will do it, I promise I'll get it done, I'll do it. You know, the chances are pretty good they're not gonna because they're just over saying it. But when someone says, hey, I need you to do this, and they say, yeah, yeah, I'll do it, and they do it right, that's because it was. There's no reason to say, have an oath. There's no reason to make a big deal of it.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I'm gonna take it. Yeah, okay, sure, but it was common. It still is common to use the utterance of Aditi's name as a guarantee of truthfulness.

Speaker 1:

And what happens over time which is what happened at this time when these words were said is that the oath was meaningless, because over time it becomes just a meaningless phrase. I swear by the God of all this, that and the other, that I will do this, and then you don't do it and nobody cares. Well, that's yeah, Because it's ancient, and this is what people always say and it doesn't mean a thing, and I think that's what this statement is saying Don't get involved in that. Do what you say.

Speaker 2:

He's an interesting bit from Wikipedia about the Temple of Solomon's dedication in this topic.

Speaker 1:

Nice.

Speaker 2:

Such elements may have been used in civil claims regarding supposed theft, for example on the commandment, is repeated in the context, to be honest, dealings with people Between the people. In Leviticus 1912, at one point of the account of the dedication of the Temple of Solomon, solomon praised Yahweh, asking him to hear and act upon curses uttered in a dispute that are then brought before his altar to distinguish between the person in the right and the one in the wrong. So even Solomon was employing these tactics in his court, which is fascinating. But you do hear a lot taking Lord's name in vain, and I think most people that I grew up with and that I know take it to mean don't curse, like you said, see.

Speaker 1:

GD Right, don't use it and it's just. In general, don't use God's name for anything, is what the charge is saying. That doesn't honor him right, and using his name as a cuss word doesn't honor him. Using his name as a guarantee that you probably will not complete is dishonoring.

Speaker 2:

I think and people don't think about what they're saying. When you say damn something or damn someone, that's pretty rough, Like what you're using.

Speaker 1:

And that came from the. In the revolutionary time it was GD the king, because the saying was God saved the king. Oh, I see, See and they're discussed with King George and they were done with King George and his abuses and insurpations, or erps.

Speaker 2:

What word is it Usurping?

Speaker 1:

Usurpations. It's in the Constitution. They were sick and tired of him. So their response to that statement God saved the king or God blessed the king was God.

Speaker 2:

Damn that king Right right.

Speaker 1:

So and that's where that comes from Interesting, but it's still all of it. Is not taking a moment to think? Well, I'm not gonna use God's name in that way. He is the grand architect of all things. He sustains me and blesses me every day with all the good things that I have in my life. Why would I do that?

Speaker 2:

That's the consideration that one should have, in my opinion, listen to us sinners talking about God in the Bible and trying to act right Dang us, I know right. Well, it's horrible people.

Speaker 1:

We're masons and masonry is a works-based idea. We work to do good, we want to do good and depending on where you come from, from your faith, there's all kinds of cool conversations you can have about that. But we'll save those for next time. To God, in never mentioning his name, but with that reverential all which is due from a creature to his creator, to implore his aid in all your laudable undertakings and to esteem him as the chief good to your neighbor and acting upon the square and doing unto him as he would he should do unto you and to yourself, and avoiding all irregularity and intemperance which may impair your faculties and debase the dignity of your profession.

Speaker 2:

As Ellis, attachment to these duties will lead to public and private esteem.

Speaker 1:

That's great. That's just so good, right, isn't that?

Speaker 2:

another one of the 10 commandments doing unto those as he would. They.

Speaker 1:

Well, that's what it's in, Matthew.

Speaker 2:

It's in what's known as the Beatitudes. It is. That's not a commandment.

Speaker 1:

Well, it's part of the Shema, I think. Hero, israel. Love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, strength, mind and yourself, and love your neighbor as yourself.

Speaker 2:

Yes.

Speaker 1:

So it's part of what's known as the Shema Hero Israel. The Lord, your God, is one. You shall serve the Lord with all your heart, with all your strength, with all your mind and with all your will, and love your neighbor as yourself. Now the Lord took that in the New Testament and took it I don't know if you want to say it to the next level, but certainly emphasized it that you are to love your neighbor as yourself, which is just such a perfect saying.

Speaker 2:

And, in general, do unto others as you would want them to do unto you Same concept.

Speaker 1:

that's right.

Speaker 2:

Don't screw somebody over if you don't want to get screwed over yourself.

Speaker 1:

And what does it say about you, right? If you don't love your neighbor, well then you don't love yourself, right? So, on the negative side, love your neighbor as yourself. Well, if you can't love your neighbor, you got a problem with yourself first and foremost. You know, do unto others as you would have them do unto you. How do you want? Are you always getting ripped off by people? Are you always being lied to? Is there always some kind of drama in your life? Well, I don't know, maybe you ought to take a look in the mirror, maybe some self reflection might be a course of action for you, brother, or? I'm saying this to myself. I'm literally looking in the mirror as I say this to myself as well. Self reflection, that should be the word of the day, that could be the word of this show self reflection.

Speaker 2:

Well, there you go. There are three great duties, which is masons we are charged to inculcate. Honor our God, honor our neighbor, honor our self.

Speaker 1:

Right, yeah. And in avoiding all irregularities and intemperance which may impair your faculties or debase the dignity of your profession.

Speaker 2:

Here we are with the superfluities of life gambling, drinking, smoking, extramarital activities these are all things that can impair your faculties and debase the dignity of your profession.

Speaker 1:

And the profession being that, hey, I'm a Mason.

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

And really you're a Mason, but I saw you online doing this. Yeah, I saw you at the casino last night for about 18 hours yeah so, and that is, you know, we could go down that road and step on a lot of toes, but we would suffice it to say, brother, if you're listening to this, if you're a Mason, and you're listening to this, and you have, and things are coming up in your mind that maybe negative things that are going on in your life, there's a reason for that, and maybe you need to explore that a little deeper and have some self reflection regarding these issues, because you know Masonry is it's a men's club if we don't actually work to change our lives.

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

And that's what it does. It changes our lives. For me this is all academic, because all of this is part of, has been a part of my life for the last 35 years Is working to do that which is in my heart to do. I want to be the most honest man I can be. I want to treat my brothers with respect. I want to love my neighbor as myself I desire to do. I can't always do it. I have to struggle through and rely on God for his favor, his grace and his empowerment. But if you're sitting there thinking to yourself, if we're saying that, let's see let me read that again Some of the things that you're doing could in fact debase the dignity of your profession. Brother, if that's, if something's coming up in your head right now, well then I think maybe it's something that God would have you review and maybe make some changes in your life. Sorry, man, but that's just, that's Masonry, man.

Speaker 2:

You see how awesome these charges are.

Speaker 1:

Right, oh, I know right.

Speaker 2:

It's like here we go, we're laying out the core of it for you. This is gonna be the last thing you hear. We want you to have a concise view of free Masonry when you leave the building here as an entered apprentice. Great men have done this before you. Any man who's willing to act like a Mason can be a Mason. And hey, respect your God, respect your neighbor and, most importantly, you need to respect yourself.

Speaker 1:

You need to respect yourself. Show right, and that's a great saying. Man, respect yourself. What's wrong with you? Man? Respect yourself Before you wreck yourself. It's like the kid that's always getting bullied, you know, and there's no excuse for bullies. Every bully should have his day, and there's people should have bullies, eventually get stood up to by somebody who's bigger than them and then they go away. But the man or even more- respectful.

Speaker 2:

Somebody smaller than them stands up to.

Speaker 1:

Right, the man that allows himself to be bullied year after year, over and over again. The admonishment is man, respect yourself. Show some where's your self-respect. Okay well if I stand up to him, he'll hurt me. It's like, yeah, all right, but where's your self-respect? You know you might have to take it.

Speaker 2:

But where's?

Speaker 1:

your self-respect, man, you know, right is right.

Speaker 2:

Stand up.

Speaker 1:

stand up, brother, it's true.

Speaker 2:

You know what we talked about this. My dad wasn't around, no men were around, and I got most of my values from Star Trek.

Speaker 1:

Right, oh yeah right, I love this story. Sounds ridiculous, but it's not. No, it's totally cool.

Speaker 2:

Like I rewatched and rewatched and rewatched these men and it really formed in my mind at a young age this is how people, real men, act. So when I was in high school, I was going to St Cloud High School and I'm from New York, I'm from Buffalo and I'm in St Cloud, Florida and I moved around a lot. I don't know if we were in witness protection or what I mean. I moved at least once a year. So I was always a new guy. I had no friends and you learn to watch people and observe, and every day I'd ride home on the bus and there was this mentally challenged kid who'd sit in the front. We called them retarded back in the day.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, that's right.

Speaker 2:

Which you don't do today. But it has a negative connotation but it is, I think, an actual medical term.

Speaker 1:

It is Retardation, mental retardation, that's correct.

Speaker 2:

And so this little kid used to sit next to him and mess with him every day, poke at him, you know, steal his stuff, and no one ever said anything and I don't know why that was To me. I was like this can't stand. So I smacked this kid in the back of the head one day. I was sitting behind him and I said why don't you pick on somebody your own size? And now I said a little guy okay.

Speaker 1:

I was bigger than him.

Speaker 2:

Uh-huh, right I wasn't a big guy either. I was skinny, very skinny, and he said I'm gonna get you. I'm gonna get you. I said you know where I am. I'm right here every day and we're talking about like seventh grade.

Speaker 1:

Okay, okay.

Speaker 2:

And the next day this kid comes on with his two big cousins. Of course, sit right behind me and you know it's not long before they're all punching me from behind the back of the seat and I don't know what to do. I'm not a fighter, I'm not an aggressive person, so I just threw a punch because I thought I'm in a fight. I better punch, right.

Speaker 1:

Right right.

Speaker 2:

And I get one guy in the gut.

Speaker 1:

Oh.

Speaker 2:

And the other two are coming at me so hard I just cover my head and kind of ball up like a turtle, and that was my first fight. I think I threw one punch, I think I hit a guy maybe, and we all get pulled off the bus and into the principal's office and I am expelled from the school. Oh, no, no conversation, everyone saw that I was in a fight Everyone was expelled. The three of us were Okay, okay, Four of us. There were three of them.

Speaker 1:

That was back in the day when everyone got expelled, oh there was no discussion.

Speaker 2:

I was just expelled and I said wait, I was defending myself. And the guy said that's not how you defend yourself. You're supposed to try to subdue the combatant. I said there's three of them. How do you subdue three guys? And they don't wanna hear that stuff. I just got expelled. But I got expelled from that school because I tried to do the right thing.

Speaker 1:

Right, yeah.

Speaker 2:

My mother never saw that, obviously. She couldn't understand that, but in my mind I always saw that as a point of pride for myself.

Speaker 1:

It is a point of pride, brother.

Speaker 2:

I wish I would have fought harder, because I was a big bitch and I went out like a little. I got my ass beat. Actually, one of the guys broke his hand on my head.

Speaker 1:

Dude, you broke his hand with your head. He kind of did it for me, Heads tend to be hard.

Speaker 2:

It's not hard to break something on it, yeah right. But yeah, I mean you need to stand up for what's right, regardless of the consequences. Sometimes and the consequences aren't high at that age Like how bad could it be?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, you gotta, you gotta school man.

Speaker 2:

People wanna carry guns and knives back then. You know it wasn't like that, we just fought each other.

Speaker 1:

Right, no, it's so true, Like real men we just punched each other in the face.

Speaker 2:

Now it's like you gotta worry that somebody's gonna have a gun or a semi-automatic weapon or a knife or whatever the hell they've got on them these days. I don't think any kid should probably do that, because it's far more dangerous today than it was when we were a kid. But you still gotta try to find a way to stand up for what's right. You have to Correct and probably the right thing is to tell on them to the superiors. That's probably the right thing to do. Not take it into your own hands.

Speaker 1:

Correct. And just a side note unless it's a bolt action or a revolver, it's a semi-automatic. All guns, almost all guns, are semi-automatic.

Speaker 2:

I should have said automatic. Those are illegal right.

Speaker 1:

Depends on who you are, but yes, Ah okay, let's continue. We're doing really good here. Now we're an hour and seven minutes in. What do you say, Chris? You wanna park? This till next week, or you wanna keep going.

Speaker 2:

No, there's only a few more good points here, and the next one is one of them. So we talked about Freemasonry, we talked about yourself, and now we're talking about what about the government? How are you supposed to behave towards your government?

Speaker 1:

In the state you are to be.

Speaker 2:

Go for it.

Speaker 1:

Okay, in the state, you are to be a quiet and peaceful citizen, true to your government and just to your country. You are not to Pally it. You are not to condensate. Oh, do you know that word I can't pronounce at this point.

Speaker 2:

You are not to countenance disloyalty Count thank you.

Speaker 1:

You are not to countenance disloyalty or rebellion, but patiently submit to legal authority and confirm with cheerfulness to the government of the country in which you live. In your outward demeanor, be particularly careful to avoid censure and reproach.

Speaker 2:

So this is an interesting idea here the. Premissary is very concerned with being a good citizen of your country.

Speaker 1:

Or loyalty to the government, to the governmental system as it was designed. So in other words, we have a constitutional republic or had a constitutional republic. I am loyal to the concept of the Constitution of the United States under a constitutional republic. We don't currently have one.

Speaker 2:

We don't. It says to conform to the government of the country in which you live, whatever it is. I think it's talking about necessarily only America and our system of government.

Speaker 1:

Well, that's true, I guess. If you live in Scotland you're subject to the crown and parliament Sure, and you have no right to free speech. But here we have a right to free speech and we also have an obligation to hold to the principles of our founding documents. So for me, loyalty to this country is my resistance to any authority that assumes it can take apart the Constitution of the United States, especially the concept of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, and that all laws are granted to us by God. All laws and all privileges don't come from us, from government, they come to us from God. So my rights to pursue life, liberty and happiness don't come from the government. They don't grant those rights to me. Those rights are given to me because I was born here and that God is the one granting them that concept.

Speaker 2:

That's a very Masonic idea. That's in our Constitution.

Speaker 1:

It's a very very Masonic idea and it is part of it, it is the crux of the Constitution of the United States. So the argument, if you will, would be OK. So we are, as Masons, to be loyal and true to our government, to be quiet and peaceful citizens. And true to the government. Which government?

Speaker 2:

The one that we were granted by our Masonic brothers Of the country in which you live.

Speaker 1:

it says or the one that has been taken apart for the destruction of our country and as a Mason, I'm supposed to sit back.

Speaker 2:

That is our government right now.

Speaker 1:

It is, it is absolutely.

Speaker 2:

I don't think you're supposed to sit back. I think that we are encouraged to participate in a positive change. Getting involved and doing everything within your legal rights to try to fix things is an obligation I think we have as citizens and as Masons.

Speaker 1:

Well, when the government is the chief lawbreaker of the land, then what do you do? What happens when plunder becomes legal, government plunder of the citizenry becomes legal?

Speaker 2:

I'm just asking this kind of hypothetically, so we can have the conversation.

Speaker 1:

I'm not trying to force my opinion on anything here.

Speaker 2:

It does open up some interesting doors, because people are able to justify almost anything by interpreting things right.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, that's true.

Speaker 2:

I've seen it in everything from church to Masonry. In Masonry we have this digest that you could spend that thing nine ways to Sunday depending on how you want to look at it. And here's another good example. We're supposed to be true to our government and just to our country. Be quiet, peaceful citizens, right. But you're right. How far do you go with that? Because our founding fathers intended our government to be run in a certain way and we continually change it over time. But that makes it a legal change and technically it is the law of the land that they can plunder us and do all this stuff to us. So how far do we go in being quiet and cheerful?

Speaker 1:

Well, I think that the way they set it up is that the Supreme Court can interpret everything based on the Constitution. So the highest court in the land has to go back to the constitutional precepts that were originally laid down. That's kind of the same thing in.

Speaker 2:

Masonry.

Speaker 1:

If you look at Masonry, we hand down, through memory and through proficiencies, these concepts that we hand down. And if, by chance, we get off along the way, we have open books every other weekend at a lodge where the actual books are there, and those books don't change. They're old, they've been around forever and ever and they don't change. So if we, as a lodge, get off track, we go back to our documents which clearly show us how to get back on track. The same thing as the Constitution of the United States is the same thing. It's a compact, an agreement between states that this is the way things will be. This is the concepts and ideas, and individual liberty is the crux of the entire idea. So you can make up all these laws, you can come with all these amendments, but as soon as the average citizen no longer has the right to live his life, apart from some government plunder, then we have to go back, just like in masonry, to open books and find out where we went wrong and make those corrections. Is that not right?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I mean we kind of do a light version of that. We have a pledge of allegiance that we force kids to pass through time and memorize and they learn and recite which says we're one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all, but then we go out and do the opposite of that.

Speaker 1:

Well, there's a phrase in there.

Speaker 2:

To limit people's liberties. We seek to limit justice for others in favor of liberties for us and justice for us.

Speaker 1:

Right because Not for all Right. Well, we don't focus on all. No, because we've gone from a constitutional representative republic to a democracy and, of course, as Plato said in his writings on republics, that every democracy has built within it its own demise.

Speaker 2:

And that is that.

Speaker 1:

Well, yeah, people, Well, eventually a smaller and smaller group of people will gather more and more money and power to themselves until they become a tyrannical leadership.

Speaker 2:

Well, that's the answer. Sound familiar? Anybody Be involved, get educated, participate, because if you do those things, they can't take it from you.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I hold to the doctrine of the lesser magistrate anymore. So the lesser magistrate would be your local government, that thing that you can actually control, and what I mean by local government is you and I sitting here together, and maybe Schaefer and Cooney. We have a little group of people that were starting the cigar and whiskey unit at the shrine. That's a small little government, and that little government, that little magistrate, governs itself and creates its own bylaws and rules, and one of the things that it's dedicated to is taking care of each other, making sure that we always take care of each other. So, to me, the lesser magistrate, no matter how small, or maybe all the way up to the county seat, is really where I want to focus, Because that's something I can change. I cannot change the direction of this insane globalized government system. It is out of control and it is crashing and burning before our very eyes. I've removed myself from any real work in that area only because my time, in my opinion, is better spent loving and caring for the brother sitting right across from me. I'm prepared to help any of my brothers whom I know and know me in any way I possibly can, and that's really where it begins for me as far as being a good citizen.

Speaker 2:

Sure, I would agree with that. And if you're going to participate in politics and you're a Mason, maybe come back and read the charges and listen to the lectures a little bit before you make decisions about things you're going to support, things you're going to support on Facebook.

Speaker 1:

please read them first before you go out there. We had a conversation in Open Lodge the other couple months ago about that and a brother stood up trying to defend his right to say bad things on Facebook. And it's like, brother, you just don't have a right to.

Speaker 2:

Well, he's saying it's a free speech thing and you do have the right to say whatever you want, but you don't have the right to be a Mason. That's something that's granted you from Grand Lodge.

Speaker 1:

And I like the saying that you have a right to speak, but you don't have a right to be heard. So just because you're speaking, it doesn't mean I'm required to listen to it. The thing is.

Speaker 2:

I like to hear different points of view.

Speaker 1:

Me too. I love it. I like to hear other sides. It's what makes life great.

Speaker 2:

When I see a news article, I go look at sources that I intentionally know a lot of people are looking at that I don't look at to see what they're saying about it, so I can understand. When I have a conversation I want to be intelligent and hear what they're going to think about it. But here's the thing we cannot, as Masons, go out and say derogatory, negative things about people we don't know.

Speaker 1:

No, that's right.

Speaker 2:

That's the issue I think you're raising is to express your ideas masonically. It's good to have an idea about politics, it's good to have ideas about your country, it's good to have these about your enemy, but as Masons, we have to express them in intelligent, eloquent, with a lot of good rhetoric and grammar. Yeah you're right and be influential in the way we say it and not lower ourselves and debase ourselves to just calling people names or making them less than human.

Speaker 1:

I totally agree. That's where the issue comes in for me, and I think we already read it right In avoiding all irregularities and intemperance which may impair your faculties or this is the point debase the dignity of your profession as a mason. If you're on your Facebook ranting about how lefties are this and lefties are that, or righties are this and righties are that, and you're making all of these assertions about other people, then you're not understanding what it means to be a mason in society. You're not getting it and you need to get it because that has to stop and it's real prevalent from the right side. I am finding I find brothers.

Speaker 2:

Well, I've unfriended left side brothers that just are not kind.

Speaker 1:

Oh, I know they're saying stuff. It's on both sides yeah.

Speaker 2:

I agree. It's definitely way more predominant, for some reason, on the right than the left. But it is definitely happening on the left too.

Speaker 1:

And well, I hear the big mantra now is God bless Florida. And whenever you hear that word, oh, god bless Florida. What they mean is that somehow Florida is this great front for right politics.

Speaker 2:

One nation under God Indivisible.

Speaker 1:

Right, right. And Florida is a red state. It's always been a very red state. I understand that. But there's a lot of diversity here, man, and we could talk about Florida politics all day long, but at the end of the day I'm just going to go back to what I said earlier. For me, florida politics, that's state. There's not a lot I can do about state politics, but Sarasota County, I can do something there. My politics, my local politics, I can do something about that. I can go to the HOA meeting as much as I hate those things in my neighborhood, which is a form of government, and I can offer myself as a friend. I live in a community, a 55-plus community, where nobody's 55. Everybody's 75. And I could offer myself to help people who need help. During the hurricane last year I was walking out in the hurricane in my rain gear making sure that everybody was OK.

Speaker 2:

All the shut-ins were good. Were you checking voter ID cards before you gave any assistance?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I checked to make sure that. No see, and that's a great point, right? You're using humor to explain a very real thing. I did not check anyone, I didn't care, it doesn't matter to me, that's someone in need.

Speaker 2:

You know they can help them.

Speaker 1:

Right. They had a person who was left leaning on the HOA, who was complaining about all the American flags that were flying out there, and you know that's an interesting argument to make. Right and he was very upset. What's?

Speaker 2:

the logic behind that argument. He was very upset. He's it's America. Right, right Like how can you have too many American flags?

Speaker 1:

But here's the problem. You know he has a right to OK. Fine, you don't appreciate it. You've made your voice known.

Speaker 2:

What was he saying. It's ugly like.

Speaker 1:

No, he's saying that it's. This kind of patriotic behavior is toxic. Toxic yeah because he's from the left side and he's not a. He said he's not a flag. Anyway, interesting.

Speaker 2:

I don't think that's a left side thing, that's a nut job thing For him. It is For him, it was.

Speaker 1:

He presented it as such and in doing so made himself a bit of a pariah. But now those from the right, because everybody's been taught hate the right hate the left. The left versus right lie that the uniparty above us has caused us to be left and right so we can fight with each other while they rip us off.

Speaker 2:

Let's just keep that part in mind.

Speaker 1:

Take power back, and that's exactly what happened in this HOA situation. People started hating him literally bitterly.

Speaker 2:

He did that to himself. He did it to himself.

Speaker 1:

He did it to himself. But where's the guy that says, hey, man, I don't really care about either of that. You're my neighbor and I don't fly a flag just because my wife does?

Speaker 2:

My wife flies the flag frequently On the federal holidays my wife puts that flag out and you see a lot of people do that.

Speaker 1:

She does that regularly and I admire her for it, but where's the guy that goes to this man who's now been? He started off spewing his incorrect from the left view and now the incorrect view from the right comes back at him and now we have this battle going on.

Speaker 2:

Not a left view. I have to say, Left right, I don't care, I've been living on the left a little while and that is not a left view I've ever heard.

Speaker 1:

Well, he portrays himself as a very leftist. It's a poor example that guy is. But from the right and left, poor examples exist. They're out there. They're out there, man. They're out there. But that's part of the lie, oh you don't like flags, don't look at them.

Speaker 2:

I'm sorry, I don't know what to tell you. They have a right to do what they want with their house.

Speaker 1:

It's a little weird. On my street there's 12.

Speaker 2:

They're very Nazi-ish, it's like you can't Only this kind of plant, only that colored thing. It's like she's OK.

Speaker 1:

And that was. I think that was his gist. He wanted to become the HOA guy that tells everybody they can't fly flags except on national holidays, whatever. It is crazy. Some days you go down my neighborhood and every house has a flag on the mailbox.

Speaker 2:

I pick you up and I'm like, wow, there are a lot of flags out here.

Speaker 1:

Well, there's a lot of ex-military and cops and stuff that live in my neighborhood.

Speaker 2:

So that's the reason why it's true. It's very true, but I never was offended by it. I couldn't even imagine somebody being offended by it Right, but let me finish the point.

Speaker 1:

The point is that where's the guy not the left versus right, right versus left guy, but where's the guy that goes to either side of this equation and says, hey, put a flag up, don't put a flag up, but if anybody needs anything you're going to have to go to. Can we just help each other?

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

If you're a shut-in. Mrs Jones down over in 4B has been shut in. Has anybody gone over to see her to make sure she's OK? She's by herself and her kids are up north. Have you done that? While you're fighting over the flag and you're left versus right ruse, ok, mrs Jones, over here your neighbor is like who knows. Nobody's been over there. So let's go over there and do that. Let's put this aside, ok, and let's do what is right. That would be a Masonic thing to do. That would be a very Christian thing to do, obviously, because I am a Christian, but it's also very clear that that is a Masonic idea and concept and we should be those peacemakers and that's a rabbit hole that I'm kind of glad I went down.

Speaker 2:

So there's a new documentary out about blue zones. You're familiar with blue zones.

Speaker 1:

Wait, I watched that last night. Is that the food, the longevity, being 100 years old?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, the centenarians.

Speaker 1:

Centenarians. That thing was very interesting.

Speaker 2:

There are places around the world where people, more often than not, live over 100 years old.

Speaker 1:

Yes.

Speaker 2:

And not just live in a wheelchair on oxygen. Oh no, Riding horses, corralling sheep. Did you see the?

Speaker 1:

lady from Okinawa, 102 years old, working in the garden, playing, throwing those rings and stuff, and working in the garden and laughing out loud. Oh, and she put a bottle on her head and was dancing. And it was a Tai Chi dance that she was doing. It was beautiful. I would love to meet that woman.

Speaker 2:

She is over 100 years old, 102. And there are a few. They start out thinking what kind of food is it? It's got to be the diet it has to be right, right no. Because in China they're eating a lot of rice. It's a lot of carbs.

Speaker 1:

Rice and the purple sweet potato. Yeah, yep Right.

Speaker 2:

So, yeah, there are some common things with the food, but not a lot. The food doesn't really make the biggest difference in how long you're going to eat.

Speaker 1:

I think his conclusion about food was is that they don't eat a lot of it. It's about portions. Yeah, their portion size is very small.

Speaker 2:

Yes, and they have a saying in the Eastern philosophy only eat till you're 80% full.

Speaker 1:

Right, right.

Speaker 2:

So they say that right before they eat with a family. It's almost like a little prayer.

Speaker 1:

Like only 80% of the food. Really cool Asian sounding words. And the last one is bo. But I don't know what the first two are. But yes it's very cool concept.

Speaker 2:

Well, the common thread that they found in all blue zones is the sense of community that they have.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

That they stay engaged with people their age, people older than them and little kids younger than them. On a daily basis, they engage as a community and that sense of community has a real impact on your quality of life and the length of your life.

Speaker 1:

Yep.

Speaker 2:

It just does something to our mental and physical bodies to be connected with other humans.

Speaker 1:

We were created to be in community. We absolutely were.

Speaker 2:

And this idea of picking enemies out of people you don't know gets in the way of that. It destroys it you won't be able to live that kind of a life if you immediately identify half the people around you as an evil.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, no, that's right, that's right.

Speaker 2:

So, for your own benefit, maybe try to reduce the hate that you have for somebody you don't know and give it a shot. Try to spark up a conversation. Hey, ask some questions of somebody you know are one of your friend who's crazy with his ideas. I'd be really curious to sit down and figure out where this is coming from, and I bet it's some kind of personal issue he's dealing with. Something happened to him in his childhood and he's trying to come out in the world and fix all the rights that he perceives.

Speaker 1:

I think the left versus right ruse has been bred into us Our earliest memories If you're from a left family, then you hate the right. If you're from a right family, then you hate the right. And it's bred into us. But all the while all the while, for my entire lifetime, the uniparty above us has been getting richer and richer and richer.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, and because we let them it's in our power to stop this. If we get together and stop this, we good.

Speaker 1:

We got to wake up and we got to stop arguing with each other over national global politics which doesn't do anything for us but make us poor and separate us and harm us. And Masonry has an avenue. Masonry has something to say about that.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, wonderful, we're talking about it, that's right. Right now, this episode is telling you.

Speaker 1:

Absolutely right. That's absolutely right. We could be the guy who goes over to Mrs Jones to find out if she's OK, as opposed to arguing over whether we should or shouldn't have too many flags, because the left versus right lie is going, you know, is alive and well in our midst.

Speaker 2:

So it's just an odd thing. It really is.

Speaker 1:

I think we started this rabbit hole, talking about Mason's, who are posting all of these things. The right versus left garbage on their social feeds and then coming to Lodge and acting like it's normal or like it doesn't exist. But we know because we see it. We see it. You post it out there and it comes through our feed and stuff and I got to tell you. If you're out there and you put that stuff on your Facebook page and it comes across mine, I immediately take you off because I don't care what side you're on, I don't participate in it. I've said this 100 times. Man, people think I'm this political animal left side, right side, whatever. I am not, I don't put up with it. I don't allow it in my life and I will immediately take you off of my feed as soon as I see it.

Speaker 2:

You do educate yourself. I know that you do have strong opinions. I do I do, and that's how it's supposed to be Right. If you're an educated man, you will have strong opinions on what you learn.

Speaker 1:

And the reason you have them is to benefit others. How do you benefit others? By calling them names and idiots and making hateful speech and words.

Speaker 2:

No, that's where we're failing.

Speaker 1:

That's where we're failing. And if you're educated and you have something to share and something to say that are words of life, the best way to do that is to be humble and to love all men, to treat all men before they give you a reason. To treat all men with respect and with kindness and gentleness, desiring to know what's in their heart, so that they might be willing to hear what is in your heart, and that's it. Yeah, that's really it, and you're right, I do have strong opinions, but I have no need to display my strong opinions over and above anybody else, because I know what I believe and I know why I believe them. And that's it. I'm good with it, I'm fine.

Speaker 2:

Well, here's a great example of that. There is another documentary out of a black man who has made a career out of friending Klansman. Is that right? Have you seen this?

Speaker 1:

one. No, what's it called? I have to check.

Speaker 2:

I'll look it up. I've seen it twice now because it was that good. He was shunned from his own community for even reaching out to Klansman and the Klan obviously didn't think highly of him trying to talk to them.

Speaker 1:

This is a perfect analogy, right?

Speaker 2:

This is perfect, but he didn't give up. He's like if I just show them that I'm a normal guy, maybe I can change one freaking guy's mind. This guy has a collection of Klan robes, honor regalia of people that have given him this stuff and friendship and have renounced the Klan.

Speaker 1:

He's the guy, Because they're like oh, they lied to me.

Speaker 2:

Like this is a good guy, I don't want to hate this guy. Like they learned to befriend him and they learned that they were wrong in their thinking and he's actually changing hearts and minds. Imagine that he's not out there preaching on a pulpit being like you're bad for saying I'm bad. He's like why do you think I'm bad man?

Speaker 1:

I love my wife.

Speaker 2:

Like you love your wife, Like sitting down breaking bread, having a conversation. That's how you change things.

Speaker 1:

That's exactly right. You change heart and minds that way he's the guy.

Speaker 2:

He's putting himself at great risk to do that.

Speaker 1:

Big time.

Speaker 2:

Big time Because his own community doesn't understand what he's doing Exactly. He has no home, he has no home.

Speaker 1:

He stepped out and he left his country, and they abandoned him. And he moved into a country that hates him Right, exactly All because of love.

Speaker 2:

He's not trying to be a Klansman. He just wants to say hey, you're a person just like me and I'm sorry that you're not educated about me and my people, so let me help you with that.

Speaker 1:

Wow, I love it. I got to watch, I'll find it and I'll watch it.

Speaker 2:

It's a great example of what you're talking about. That's how we change things. We talk to each other.

Speaker 1:

Talk to each other and, with gentleness and respect and again, I keep saying it to you and I'll always say it to you Know what you believe and why you believe it. And the reason why is because, once you know why you believe something, the particulars of and the reason behind it, you don't need to go out and push your agenda on anybody. I don't need you to know my beliefs. If it's going to cause a rift between you and I, I don't need it. I know why I believe them. I'm comfortable with them. I will educate myself if I'm wrong on something and I'll come to the truth. I seek truth. That's just what I do. So if you're out there from the left side, the right side, the center side, the upside, the downside, and you don't really know why you believe the things you believe, I would encourage you to educate yourself on that fact. It's worthy of your time because it will make you a better man. It'll make you that guy. You'll be that guy.

Speaker 2:

Darrell Davis.

Speaker 1:

Darrell, You'll be Darrell Davis. Be a Darrell Davis man.

Speaker 2:

Darrell Davis. He's an African-American musician. He's going out of his way to befriend Klansman. It's great. For more than 20 years he's been doing that, so he's done a lot, and your mind will be blown when you see what real courage looks like, which is the pacifist way, the way of talking and loving, leading with love.

Speaker 1:

I would say it's the way of truth. That's the way of truth because truth? Look at that picture.

Speaker 2:

If you Google his name, you'll find articles all over the internet.

Speaker 1:

I'm going to save it. Yeah, we're definitely going to get into him. Darrell Davis, a little bit. Darrell Davis is living. Darrell Davis is doing the work Boy. I tell you there's some of that here in Masonry here in. Florida some of that. We need a Darrell Davis in Masonry to step up and start educating people, because God created man in his own image and in his own image did he create he and them. And if you have a problem with a human being because of their birth color or their birth heritage, you got a problem with God, their creator, man.

Speaker 2:

Well, you can extrapolate that out to anything. You have an issue with someone about that you don't know personally, it's kind of the same deal, no matter what the issue is, unless you know them as a person, you don't have a right to hate on them.

Speaker 1:

That's so true.

Speaker 2:

Once you know them as a person, you probably have every right to hate on them. Well, that's another show, that's another thing.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, that's a different show. So, brother, this has been a great conversation. Once again, I have been half of the charge was covered. Half of the charge was covered. I guess we're going to have to do next week. We'll have to jump to the other half of the charge and go through it. And we'll just keep going forward. I just want to go over maybe some takeaways here for the show. Guys, if you're out there listening, I think it's worthy of repeating the self-reflection we started with. Talking about humility and self-reflection. If that speaks to you today, there's a reason for that. And take some time. Whoever you are, from anybody, any walk of life, take a minute and look in the mirror, either literally or figuratively, and ask yourself some important questions about are you happy with the way your life is? Are you happy with the way you deal with your brothers and your family? Are you unhappy with things in your life? And then effect change. Masonry offers you tools.

Speaker 2:

Is your haircut complimenting the shape of your face? Yes, is your haircut complimenting the shape of your face? The things we need to reflect on.

Speaker 1:

Yes, don't reflect on that.

Speaker 2:

No, don't do that.

Speaker 1:

Worry about that. Later it says the guy with no hair.

Speaker 2:

I was in Phoenix Lodge, as you were on Tuesday night.

Speaker 1:

Tuesday night.

Speaker 2:

They gave us their really kind. They gave us this gift, a traveling gavel. Really kind to them they didn't have to do that.

Speaker 1:

Oh, so kind. Yeah, thank you, brothers.

Speaker 2:

Actually they did have to, and we got it, but I was asked to help with a fellcraft efficiency. So, I went out into the secretary's office to work with those guys while you were opening Lodge and guess what's hanging on the wall? A little mirror that says chamber of reflection over it.

Speaker 1:

Oh no.

Speaker 2:

Apparently the secretary has a little chamber of reflection over there at Phoenix Lodge.

Speaker 1:

I love it.

Speaker 2:

And I didn't say anything, but in my mind I was like ooh chamber of reflection.

Speaker 1:

We love it. We need the chamber of reflection, man, we just need it. I don't know why it's not, I don't know why it's gone, but this show is dedicated to possibly someday making it. Well, bring it back, guys, bringing it back, bringing it back Because, memento mori, my brothers, memento moris, remember, someday you must die. Therefore live your life accordingly.

Speaker 2:

Live your life accordingly. If you're out there as a mason and you have any experience writing law for masonry, let us know, because I'm interested in finding out how we can get some laws passed to bring the chamber of reflection back into our ritual work.

Speaker 1:

Oh, that would be awesome, that would be great. Yeah, and let this show. Maybe that could be one more.

Speaker 2:

I don't know how to do that. One of our little hobby horses.

Speaker 1:

I'm interested in it though that would be fun. That would be fun to get that done and to bring that back Because in my opinion and most other states still do it this is kind of a Florida thing, so it would be great to bring that back to reflect upon your mortality, brother.

Speaker 2:

Even other countries. Warsaw Fogarcio was in Puerto Rico and they show us. They have a beautiful chamber of reflection over there. It's everywhere. But here, come on. Why are we robbed? We want our reflection chamber.

Speaker 1:

Well, brother, I am once again. I'm just absolutely blessed by all that we do here and by the people listening and everybody who gives us encouraging words and more and more people. Everywhere I go, people are giving me high fives and shouting out to me and I'm just blown away by it. We do this to serve the national team and it is our joy. It's not always easy to get it, it's super early on a Friday morning, but we love it. We absolutely love it. I love sitting across from my worshipful master, my brother Chris Burns, and I'm just absolutely privileged. Chris, what do you got? And send them off with time. We love you. That'll do it. We'll see you next time, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you.

Exploring Masonry and Lodge Activities
The Importance of Leadership in Masonry
Embracing Failure, Learning From Mistakes
Ancient Origins and Importance of Freemasonry
The Importance of Honoring God's Name
Oaths and Honoring God and Others
Respect and Stand Up for Right
Citizenship and Loyalty in Government
Community and Politics in Florida
The Importance of Humility and Education

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