Is Barack Obama a Freemason

Hello Readers,

Livingstone here. Since I posted the Nelson Mandela article about his Masonic history and how it worked into his fight against apartheid, the views of this blog have gone through the roof. I am honored that my blog has gotten so much attention and that people are re-posting it to other places. Considering the interest in Masonic leaders, I figured I would have the next blog be focused on the biggest leader in the world, Barack Obama.

First things first. There is a conclusion to this that will surprise you near the end of this blog entry. But I am putting it down there and not up here because you must work yourself into it. Telling someone something out of context can be damaging to their understanding and context is key. So here goes.

In the 21st century, anytime someone is newly christened a leader of a nation or organization, you will soon find YouTube videos and conspiracy blogs accusing this person of being a Freemason. And sometimes it isn’t enough to be just a Mason, but a 33 Scottish Rite Mason. As if it takes being a 33 Mason to satisfy some requirement that they are without a doubt playing Satanic puppet master over the citizens of the world. And for Obama, his journey has been no different.

Is Barack Obama a Freemason

As you can see from the above link, the question is being asked early and often. And I will go step by step and assess each claim and counter claim, along with my own personal knowledge, to show you the answer.

Section A:

We can see Barack is being presented in many photos making Masonic handshakes, wearing rings, or having some secret element prove that he’s a Mason. Let’s go into a couple of these.

You will find this photo, or some variation of it all over the internet. Newsweek ran a story back in 2008 about Obama during the election cycle when Obama was running for president. And what sparked the storm of controversy was a photo showing a pair of hands with a similar skin tone to Obama, holding up the seal of the president of the United States. And indeed, that is a Masonic ring on that finger.

As far as we know, those hands don’t belong to Obama. It’s common for the media to set up certain things for a photo to connect to an article of some sort. Barack holding up a seal of the president of the United States makes for a great shot. An even better shot would have been him in it. But no, we don’t see his face. It’s generally likely these hands were staged, probably another reporter or a friend holding up the seal, and the photo of the person’s hand were taken. To further prove it, where is Obama’s wedding ring? I don’t know about you, but Michelle Obama would have the “other” ring missing.

What is curious, and we do have to give some credit to the conspiratorial here, is this person was wearing a Masonic ring. Here the conspiratorials actually have a point about something peculiar. Why would these journalists have the stand in wear the ring? Why would they have this shown prominently? What value or loss of value would this have for Obama or Newsweek?

From a conspiratorial perspective, Obama wearing a Masonic ring is a nice way to let other powerful Masons know that Obama is one of them. As such, they will use their financial and media power to influence Obama winning the election. And in some ways, that really isn’t an out of this world idea. Politicians are trying to tell people they are “one of them” all the time. The code words they use, the phrasing, etc all point to subtly saying small things that mean big things to certain people to get votes and support. But again, these weren’t the hands of Obama. This was some stand in. So what would Newsweek’s angle be? Maybe Newsweek knows something we don’t, and having a stand in do this gives Obama some plausible deniability.

So I did some searching around to get to the answer of this. Here is what Google provided.

Interestingly enough, not a single mainstream news source had an answer to this. All that existed were articles Infowars, Godlikeproductions, and Freemasonrywatch. Not one of them credible because of a lack of accuracy. The one credible one, The Grand Lodge of British Columbia website, said that Obama is not a Mason. Yet they had no answer for the Newsweek article of why this person had a Masonic ring. What I can say, is that while they think Obama is not a Mason because no lodge has announced it as such, they do forget that as Masons, we keep secrets and don’t “out” our brothers unless they choose to reveal themselves.

So our reasonings for Newsweek has done this are as follows. 1. Obama is indeed a Freemason, and they are subtly letting the world know. 2. They let some stand in wear his ring and didn’t know it was Masonic. Or 3. They intentionally did this to generate a story, get extra site hits, get people riled up and generate controversy.

If you ask me, “2” is bunk because these photographers know very well what is going on and they proof every photo that goes into their magazine by editors and such. “3” actually has more credence than people are giving because in the world of the American news media, site hits are the only reality they care about. But Newsweek is generally pretty credible, by American standards anyways. So more questions arise…

Section B:

You will find often on many Masonic watch sites a plethora of photos showing some handshake that doesn’t look normal showing that this person must be a Freemason. Because of my obligation I can’t comment on our modes of recognition because even acknowledging they exist can be construed as violating our obligation. But these people and their obsession with the “secret in the open” of a handshake have an interesting position  which warrants an entire article in itself. However we’ll focus on this photo and let’s look at this pragmatically.

Here is the video of the picture in question. Barack Obama is a Freemason Video. When Obama went to shake the hand of Bob Schieffer, he came in, shook his hand, and then went to McCain to shake his hand. The video uploader points out how Obama’s handshake was different then the one given to McCain. But here’s the question I ask…if this is true, why didn’t Obama give the handshake to McCain? Isn’t the system rigged for a false “two choices”? Also, do you think Obama and Schieffer just met on camera, that they didn’t meet before? Of course they met before, moderators are talking to people and getting people prepped all the time. You don’t think the Masonic handshake could have been exchanged then? Obviously, this is all dependent on whether the handshake was even Masonic or not. But let’s just say this YouTuber is taking you guys for a ride. Sure you could argue the handshake was done so Masons at home could confirm Obama was a Freemason. But considering how fast it happened, many of them would miss it. The uploader even had to rewind back to it and slow it down to show you. To further hit the point home, there is no Masonic network or super site for us all to talk to each other. Hence the forms of recognition. So Obama is not doing a good job showing the world he’s a Mason if you are to believe the handshake is true.

Of course the conspiracy crowd won’t have any of this, because I’m a Mason and must be lying. So let’s move forward to see what else we got.

Section C:

British Columbia Grand Lodge says Obama is not a Freemason

The BCGL website is an extremely reputable website when it comes to figuring out if someone is a Mason or not. But as we can see here, they don’t even have Nelson Mandela listed, perhaps the most famous human rights, revolutionary activist, and statesmen in the modern era. So they only go so far. As much as their article brings up some good points, again, if Obama became a Mason and wanted to make sure his lodge kept it a secret they probably would. Now of course people talk. And word might get out. But considering how society negatively views people with conspiracy theories most individuals would be deterred from spreading word that Obama is a Mason without hard evidence. Can you imagine the conversation?

“So this Obama guy is doing really well. To well”

“I got the answer for ya. He’s a Freemason. I know someone at his lodge who told me that over drinks the other night”

“Er, ok. Who was the guy?”

“:Mention friend’s name:”

So you have that. Now imagine how this new person will deal with this information. Are they going to go around telling people a friend of a friend says Obama is a Freemason? They don’t have any hard evidence. Only a friend of a friend. Also, people really don’t bring up Freemasonry in conversations because they A: Don’t even know what it is, and B: Because it sounds like you spend too much time on conspiracy websites. And even if people do talk and spread the word this becomes a game of phone tag and the tales get larger and wilder. Also mainstream websites don’t want to look like they have lost their minds by reporting rumor. So that’s an argument for why word wouldn’t spread about Obama. And for the record Obama has never been asked if he was a Freemason.

Section D:

Our next stop is Yahoo Answers. Yahoo Answers, which seems like a great idea in theory, is brought down by people with animated cartoon characters for avatars answering serious questions on a website that looks like it would fit better in the year 1997. Also it’s packed with terrible misinformation.

Yahoo 1: Is Barack Obama a Freemason

Here is the response to the question which also asks if he is being controlled by us which tips you off to the direction this whole thing will go. The answer is almost entirely bullshit but it’s a work in mad creativity so I enjoyed that. What is sad though is it’s been voted the top answer. There aren’t any solid links and even the question itself is largely ignored by the tangental answer.

Yahoo 2: Is Obama a Freemason or some Devil Worshiper

Quick tangent. You would think it would get to me seeing all these insane posts accusing us Freemasons of horrifying evil acts and behavior. Well you’re right. It does get old. Imagine if I were Gay or Jewish going through things like this. It would be supremely painful to say the least. But for some reason, Masons have taken a different approach to stuff like this and sometimes you just have to look at it like an academic.

So here is the response to the Yahoo Answers Masonic devil worshiper question.

Barak Obama is neither a mason nor a muslim, nor a devil worshipper. As usual the republicans pedal their fear to the ignorant and easily fooled. It’s all about him being a black man in a position of power, which is every republican’s nightmare. Everyone forgets he was the member of a church prior to running for president, and they forget how the preacher of that church was famous for anti-government rhetoric. They tend to ignore facts that disprove all their bull, like the fact that his US birth certificate was produced, and the facts concerning the church he attended and the fact that he DID NOT write the health care plans the republicans have called ‘Obama-care’, which basically would bring the drug companies down off their 200% profit pedestals, thereby reducing medical insurance costs. They call it welfare, and they hate welfare – unless of course it’s corporate welfare – which helps companies move all the jobs overseas so more people can’t afford medical care.
Yeah, you guys are all about results aren’t you?
You’re just not about truth or facts.

Added fact: masons started as STONE MASONS, not blacksmiths.

This is generally true, pardon the misspellings, lack of paragraphs, and manic anti-republican tangents. The amount of level headed responses to anti-masonry are few and far between but we’ll take things like this. Anything really.

Generally the rest of the Yahoo responses say as such, saying that Obama is not a Mason. The rest of Google’s responses have the same usual conspiratorial stuff I have mentioned and not much more. So what I’ll do, is talk about famous black leaders and Masonry.

Section E:

Famous Black Freemasons

As you can see, it’s a who’s who list of people who fought for progress in the civil right movement and then attained status within the US Government. Here are a few key members.

Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Charles Rangel, Carl Stokes, Booker T Washington, W.E.B DuBois, Kweisi Mfume. Also there are many mayors and statesmen not on that list. For example the last 4 mayors of Philadelphia were Masons but they aren’t listed.

So what am I getting at from all of this? What I am saying is that Black Freemasons have dominated civic life and have lead the charge of breaking through the racal barriers in America. Obama, being an educated man who spent a lot of time in the Chicago community, must have been exposed to Masonry at one point or another. Especially the Prince Hall Lodges which are very energized and active. At some point, Obama had to have wondered about becoming a Mason and what that meant. He wasn’t someone who worried about public perception, as we can remember his pastor, Reverend Wright. So Obama worrying about turning off people by becoming a Mason seems unfounded.

However Obama’s religious nature could have had an effect on him. But there is also a polarization on this. Most can agree that Obama is largely a secular man in his attitudes, things he does and his general conversation with people. Yet as a community organizer it was a church organization that he ran. And he did attend his church in Chicago for over a decade. And Wright was the person who would give invocations for him and was the man who baptized Obama’s two children. Sounds like a very Christian man to me. Of course you could say he was thinking about politics then, but we’re not sure and history shows that generally people reveal their true colors over a long period of time. If he was thinking politics, it wouldn’t have matched what he was actually doing and mistakes would have been made to reveal himself as such.

To say Obama’s religious views are complex largely true. I can see why people aren’t quite sure what to make of the man. His history was many different experiences and there is a nuance to how he carries himself now.

Obama did have a sense of gathering community and bringing people together. Also he story shows that he did have the urge and desire to chase after high level political positions. He must have been very aware that Masonry is conducive to helping men of color attain positions of power and influence due to the connections, shared experience, and trust that comes with it. It would have been ignorant for him to have not entertained the idea or at least talked to people about it.


I have gone through enough articles and stories about whether Obama was a Mason or not. There have been many reasons given to why he’s a Mason or why he isn’t. As you can see, the Newsweek article causes the most questions to swirl but other then that, we have nothing to prove that he is a Mason. Yet I want to be clear when I say this, we have nothing to disprove that he isn’t a Mason either. No one has ever asked if he is a Freemason. If he was a Freemason there are good reasons why he didn’t reveal it. How can we say that someone is not a Freemason in a United States that is filled with conspiracy theorists. Just look at this article by Boing Boing. Half the country thinks JFK was killed by some conspiracy, 37% think global warming is a hoax, 28% thinks there is a New World Order, and 15 million Americans alone think reptiles run the government. I don’t know about you but telling people you’re a Freemason in this political climate, considering the success of it’s members and it’s secrecy, would be insane.

The conclusion. We don’t know. And the only one who should tell us is Barack Obama.

Nelson Mandela, A Freemason, and the End of Apartheid

Nelson Mandela

Hello readers,

So I have your attention. The title of this blog is 100% true. This may be news to you but it’s actually even news to many of us Masons. We do a terrible job telling each other who is a Mason and who isn’t.

Over in Redditland, a thread was created by the poster Defjamblaster.

Reddit Nelson Mandela Freemason

Just letting Brothers know that he too, was allegedly one of us (i’ll research this). He was allegedly made on sight in North Carolina at a time when there were no Prince Hall Lodges in South Africa. They later went on to charter Mandela Lodge # 843 under the PHGL of NC. As far as I know, he did not go further than the Blue house. The details of his being made are scant below, but it appears to have been done by Grand Master William Parker Jr. of the M.W. Prince Hall Grand Lodge of North Carolina.

Edit 1: i’ve added “allegedly” to the statement until we get some better info.

Update 1: I’ve left messages for 2 of the 3 grand lodge historians for the MWPHGLONC. Will report any updates received.

Update 2: just spoke with the assistant Grand Historian. He confirmed that Mandela was made on site as listed above, with this added info: ” it occurred june 28, 1990 in Georgia. his wife was made a member of OES as well.” Mandela was receiving a gift from the MWPHGLO Georgia in his hotel suite, and the GM of NC was present as well. He says that this info appears in the grand lodge proceedings of that year. He also said that the Grand Junior Warden of NC issued a statement that makes reference to his membership. He will be forwarding that to me. He also indicated that he thinks the lodge in South Africa has since dissolved.

Update 3: statement added as jpg.

Update 4: photo of Mandela Lodge # 843 info from NC proceedings

Above are two pictures to show proof that he was indeed initiated, passed, and raised as a Master Mason.

So the question I now ask, what does this mean for you. For me, I’m honored to have Nelson Mandela as part of our Fraternity. He was someone who took power in South Africa and instead of immediately turning around and crushing the Whites, he did the best he could to run South Africa peacefully. The pressure for him to turn around and punish the former apartheid regime must have been great. But he took the high road.

However, there is some interesting history about this and I want to talk about what it means to us. Here are a few quick links to get your started.

Nelson Mandela Biography Article

Nelson Mandela Wikipedia Article

So from what we have from the North Carolina Prince Hall Grand Lodge, Nelson Mandela was made a “Mason On Sight” in 1990. Because of the documentation we have from the Grand Lodge, we have to assume this is all true. North Carolina PHA has never claimed anyone else falsely and Masonry is known to take terrific records of who passed the west entrance.

In 1990, Nelson Mandela had been in prison for 27 years. When F.W. de Klerk became president, he immediately released Nelson Mandela on February 11th 1990. Now being in prison for 27 years is no small feat. I don’t think any of us can really imagine the magnitude of the suffering and abuse Mandela dealt with while in prison. I’m sure when he became free, there were a million things he wanted to do, resting for a long time being one of them.

So when it came to light that a mere four months later he came to the US and became a Mason…it raises a few eyebrows for me. I’m not raising an eyebrow of whether it happened or not, not at all as the documentation is there. What I’m intrigued about is Nelson Mandela himself and why in the world he would do this. He must had had a thousand things on his mind, apartheid was still in full swing in South Africa and the street battles/protests were still raging. The world was looking to Mandela to take the reigns. His life was in full throttle. He had no free time.

When people wonder what it takes to be made a “Mason on Sight”, it’s no small feat. The ceremony, proficiency, and work take an entire day. Usually 10 hours of ritual work and other things are involved to make it official. For someone in his position, to spend 10 hours anywhere is almost impossible unless something was extremely important to him. Obviously it was important to the South Carolina PHA Masons. Having Mandela as one of them is something to be proud of. But for Mandela to choose to be one of us…that’s something to meditate over.

But what we do know are the timelines. Let’s take a look at them to see if we can gather any clues from them.

Negotiations to end Apartheid

Informal negotiations began on May 4th 1990, and suspension of the ANC armed struggle occurred on August 6th 1990. Official negotiations to end apartheid begin on December 20th 1991.

This period of history was one of the most sensitive for South African national politics. Many of us remember how close the Israeli/Palestinian peace negotiations came and then how quickly they collapsed. To be able to pull this off without falling back into violence and bloodshed takes a super human effort, coordination and trust among all the parties competing for power and attention. Yet Mandela found a way to fit in becoming a Freemason.

My first speculation was that Mandela was using Freemasonry to help allay the fears of other leaders. By becoming a Mason, he was now “one of them”. Also Masonry makes it very natural to meet other leaders in a non-hostile environment. Also in Mandela’s case by being a Mason it shows his psychological mentality was of the moderation that Masonry espouses. Mandela did have a terrorist and Communist history. For some, the perception of Mandela as this peaceful dove who wanted to end the struggle and nothing more seemed like a false narrative created for the media. Considering the suffering he faced, it would be hard for anyone to believe he didn’t want vengeance. Becoming a Freemason can do wonders to change that perception of you.

Now I did speculate that Mandela became a Mason to be able to use it as a way to quietly talk to other leaders. Looking at the people involved, the information on other Masonic leaders is scarce. Of the world players, we do know US President Ronald Reagan was also a “Mason on Sight” but his was more of the unofficial variety and the rituals he went through didn’t fully fulfill the typical Mason on Sight requirements. But he stopped being a president in 1988. George Bush Sr. was Skull and Bones and while the Bonesmen do have some Masonic DNA elements, they aren’t Masonic in origin or affiliation. Bill Clinton’s father was a Freemason and he was a Demolay (Youth Freemason) as a kid. Margaret Thatcher was a women so it’s highly unlikely she was a Freemason, but GODF Masonry does have a foothold in England so there is a slight chance she was a member. As for South African politicians, not much is known for SA Masonic leaders, if any of them were. Botha Pik is listed as a Freemason on a few Masonic websites. Also the founder of the South African nation Piet Retief is one of us as well. Now it’s common for people affiliating with Masonry to never have their Masonic affiliation know. The World Wide web doesn’t find out everything, especially because of Masonry’s long history before the internet. And while Masons have a long record of proudly trumpeting famous Masons, many Masons keep their Masonic identity religiously guarded as to not interfere with their personal lives. Another reason is that many Masons choose not to be remembered as Masons. For Masons, how you choose to be known is just as important as whether to join or not.

So looking through this, it still isn’t clear to how or why he decided to become a Mason. Becoming a Mason is not always a plus as anti-Masonry among the ignorant and disturbed is high. Considering the various factional elements in the Black population of South Africa, becoming a Freemason would have made him a target for those who wanted to take control.  Mandela never really advertised his affiliation, possibly because of the reasons stated above. I could speculate that Mandela became a Freemason for a reason other Masons join, to be part of something special. But Mandela was already a part of something special heading the ANC and was doing miraculous things for human rights and equality. Or maybe he wanted to become a Mason because he wanted to build a society and country in a constructive way as many past Masonic revolutionaries and leaders have done. But he could have done that without becoming a Mason. Why he became a Mason is similar to Masonry’s ancient history, we’ll never know what caused it to be.

So what does this mean to you? Nelson Mandela chose to become a Mason but not to have it as part of his public identity. We remember him for his great accomplishments, his dedication to South Africa, and his super human ability to remain resolute in the face of incomprehensible suffering and anguish.  So while I have told you that he is indeed a Freemason, he chose not to be remembered as one. Fair enough. He’s a Freemason, but he should be remembered the way he wanted to be remembered. As a man of peace and nothing more.