Worshipful Master's Voice - June Issue 2017
When is a Man a Mason
Last month we reflected on Brotherhood and the Fraternity in Masonry. This month’s piece is an attempt to give some thought to the individual, himself, as a Mason.
“When is a man a Mason? When he can look out over the rivers, the hills and the far horizon with a profound sense of his own littleness in the vast scheme of things and yet have faith, hope and courage, the root of every virtue. When he knows down in his heart every man is as noble, as vile, as divine, as diabolic and as lonely as himself and seeks to know and to love his fellow man. When he knows how to sympathize with men, even in their sin, knowing each man fights a hard fight against many odds and still believes in them when they do not believe in themselves. When he has learned how to make friends and to keep them and, above all, how to keep friends with himself. When he loves flowers, can hunt birds without a gun and feels the thrill of an old forgotten joy. When he hears the laugh of a little child. When he can be happy and high-minded amid the meaner drudgeries of life. When star-crowned trees and the glint of sunlight on the flowing waters subdue him like the thought of one much loved and long dead. When no voice of distress reaches his ears in vain and no hand seeks his aid without response. When he feels a social inequity as a personal sin and a human calamity as a private bereavement, sharing the guilt and sorrows of his fellows. When he finds God in every faith that helps any man to lay hold of divine things and to see majestic meanings in life, whatever the name of that faith may be. When he can look into a wayside puddle and see something beyond mud and into the face of the most forlorn fellow mortal and see something beyond his sin. When he knows how to pray, how to love, how to hope, how to meet defeat and how not to be defeated. When he has learned how to give himself, to forgive others, and to live with thanksgiving. When he has kept faith with himself, with his fellow man, with his God; in his hand a sword for evil, in his heart a bit of song, glad to live, but not afraid to die! Such a man has found the only real secret of Masonry and the one which it is trying to give to all the world.”
From The Builders by Joseph Fort Newton
This is where I am suppose to impart some words of wisdom from the East. I first read these words by Brother Newton for inspiration, worthy as a basis for the Master's Word. However, it was only as I copied it, word for word, phrase for phrase, that its significance really began to take hold. My only imparted thought would be to read it again with a little more time and diligence.
Frank R. Klapinski, WM