Livingstone here to give you your daily Masonology experience. I have been extremely humbled by all of those new (and old) people who have chosen to follow me and my little blog. To build something great that stands the test of time, it must start somewhere. And it will always start small. But it is our vision of what it will become in our minds, and our hearts, that allows us to know the path we must take to build it. And that path will only work with you great readers. I hope to serve you well as I build this blog. Please contribute anytime.
So today’s conversation is abut the creation of Masonry as the 3rd Society. This is something to think about for those who consider to become Freemasons. I’ll explain what this means.
Becoming a Freemason is the ultimate physical manifestation of one’s choice to step out from the crowd. Those who choose to step out in life are either A: Pulled back in by the powerless crowd, or B: Pushed back in by the powerful rulers. To put it plainly, those in power don’t want people to step out and take their power. Those without power don’t want anymore people to step out and eventually be in power over them. I’ll give you a quick philosophical explanation and then connect it with a historical Masonic one as I dive into this.
Those people who are famous, well-known, or influential today always have people trying to tear them down. Take a stroll through the comments section of a Youtube comments section about a video related to them. It’s ugly. Same for the comments sections of newspaper articles, message boards, blog posts, etc. If you stand out, people shred you all the time. No one is universally loved. Even Opera has her detractors.
Those people who step out of the crowd are routinely torn apart by those in power those who aren’t. The new person who challenges the common ways of thinking is a threat. They must be crushed and pushed back into the crowd. Or they will become a new ruler and must be destroyed and dragged back into the crowd. Think of all the movie stars, musicians, athletes and politicians who were told by friends, family, coaches, people in power, and so forth that they were wrong/failure/obscene. When Obama ran for president for the first time, those who had been in Washington for a long time did everything they could to make sure you were convinced he couldn’t cut it. And regular people thought he was going to become a dictator and suppress them. When South Park first ran critics ripped the show for being a part of the degradation of society while regular people were offended or scared by its themes that were sometimes very revealing. When members of the scientific community revealed that cigarettes were dangerous, thousands of well known scientists and thinkers talked about how they were perfectly fine. And many people thought they were up to no good and were inventing false information to push their agenda. In conclusion, those who stand out face it from both sides.
So again, “Becoming a Freemason is the ultimate physical manifestation of one’s choice to step out from the crowd.” I say this because of anti-Masonry’s history and how the critics of Freemasonry have reacted toward Masonry in general. Freemasonry is routinely accused of plotting to overthrow the government. Overthrow the church. Subvert the media and film industry. Etc. Those in power fear Freemasonry for a multitude of reasons. It’s secrecy. It’s belief in God when many of them secretly have rejected God. Masonry’s dedication to Truth, Relief, and Brotherly Love. Justice. The fear that Freemasons will rig things to push them out of power. People in power are threatened by this organization that, in their mind, can have it’s members exist within the power structure. And then ultimately become the defining power. Conversely the crowd is threatened by Masonry because they feel it controls everything. It has secretly infiltrated the church. It controls the government. It controls industry, banking, higher education. You name it. People feel that they will be forever trapped where they are because of a Masonic power structure that denies them their rightful place in society, whatever that may be.
So for you who are thinking abut becoming a Mason, there is a lot that comes with that because of how society has reacted. Going to my historical discussion about Masonry, from the beginning Masons were the first “3rd Degree” of society. In the beginning, there were the masters and the slaves. The Pharaohs were the “1st Degree” and ruled all of Egypt, the first real civilization of humanity. They comprised the ruling class, and held enormous power. And then there was the “2nd Degree”, the slave-society. Or the rest of humanity as we know it. There were only two groups of people, those who has power and ruled and those who didn’t and obeyed. Until something happened. I like to think life has a funny way of working things out, but there was one thing many of the Egyptians believed in and that was a higher power. Gods of all types ruled them. That was how they saw the world. And this belief, combined with the Pharaohs obsession of immortality, created the first physical manifestation of humanity. The pyramids. And something happened during that construction. And I have a theory about that. First, something to consider about the pyramids.
The logistics of construction at the Giza site are staggering when you think that the ancient Egyptians had no pulleys, no wheels, and no iron tools. Yet, the dimensions of the pyramid are extremely accurate and the site was leveled within a fraction of an inch over the entire 13.1-acre base. This is comparable to the accuracy possible with modern construction methods and laser leveling. That’s astounding. With their ‘rudimentary tools,’ the pyramid builders of ancient Egypt were about as accurate as we are today with 20th century technology.
Something happened then, and my theory is that we saw the creation of the “3rd Degree” of humanity. The Mason. The people who built the pyramids were NOT slaves as you can see from this article, but Architects, Stone Builders and Masons. For 50 years they built the great pyramids to a form and function that was beyond anything possible in the world. And through that, they became something different. They were neither slave nor ruler. Their knowledge of construction and building made it so they were invaluable. While they would never be rulers they would never be slaves either. Their importance gave them a wealth and status that was never seen before. They had the power. And through that they became a society of their own. Yet they still reported to the rulers and created structures for them. What they created were eternal physical and psychological manifestations of the ruler’s existence in the world till the end of time.
Because of that they soon grew to have a power over their rulers. For they would not be treated like a slave any longer. They could choose who history remembered and who it forget, who society saw as king and who society saw as fraud. For the first time in human history, the rulers were now ruled. For this, Masons were also a threat to them. And as we can speculate, that fear most likely caused the Pharaohs to do everything in their power to keep the Masons as weak as possible. The best possible way to break them would be to have their knowledge of Masonry well know. So Masons obviously did everything in their power to keep it secret. If that didn’t work, most likely violence and deception to break them. The Pharaohs knew what they were doing to their slaves. They must have known how the slaves would love to tear them down if they could. Conspiracy of a Mason lead upheaval must have been on their minds often.
Now for the slave-society, Masons were a threat to them as well. They were another set of rulers, who could tell them what to do. Not much is known where the Masons who built the pyramids came from. We could assume they were from educated wealthy rulers and their families. Or we could also assume they were from a long line of slaves who passed on knowledge to their offspring that eventually reached a critical mass knowledge point. That critical mass knowledge point turned them from men who just knew how to build things, to Master Builders. But to build the pyramids with the precision, beauty and strength that they did…not something any group of mere mortals could do alone. But we can speculate that they also felt a certain kinship with those slaves. They were workers too. They had their aprons and working tools and they stood and built side by side with the slave-society. An interesting collaboration For so much of human thought is binary thinking. Good or bad, yes or no, up or down, forward or back. To have this third element must have thrown their minds for a loop. The “conspiracy theory” crowd tries to do as much as they can to make Masonry and the power structure one and the same. They want things to be binary. They don’t know how to handle a world that does not work in a them vs. us sense. Slaves were threatened by Masons, conspiracy of a Mason secret control over them must have drove many of them mad. It’s not unconventional to think that many slaves tried to kill Masons out of fear, or torture them for information so they too could break out of their bonds.
So here we are, a society that exists between the black and white. A society that has a power that is not physical but mental. They build structures that are the physical manifestation of an empire or people. But their power to do it is completely invisible. As their knowledge exists in the words from their lips, the words to their ears and the synapse of the mind.
I will leave you with this. The Masons for a very long time worked for those rulers. Creating towering buildings for them to be remembered forever. I can imagine it must have been exhausting to watch as a Mason. To see people who look and work just like you living as prisoners to a system and society that planned to keep it that way. Lucky for us, a day came along when the people became the rulers as well. The post-American revolution world saw for the first time societies defined and ruled by people. The very “slaves” were now rising up and becoming the rulers of their people. And the Freemasons found themselves for the first time building great structures not for Pharaohs or kings, but for the people.
This was around the time Freemasonry revealed itself to the world. I like to think they did this because the world had finally built itself into a structure that could really stand the test of time. A world not of three societies, but of one.