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Something Older Than Myself

July 15, 2021

My therapist said that I value things that represent a connection. Talismans or tokens. I carry a watch my son gave me. I have a ring my uncle gave me. I own another watch that belonged to my great grandfather. A lapel pin that was my grandfathers.

Until she pointed it out, I didn’t really consider it. It probably has to do with my very dysfunctional childhood. I’ll probably need therapy to explore that.

I make aquintences easily, but friends not as much. I value loyalty and consider it the most cherished characteristic of my friends.

It is little wonder then, that one of the organizations I chose to join was the Freemasons. It’s the oldest fraternal organization in the world. The history of America is replete with the influence of Masons. Eight of the fifty-six signers of the Declaration of Independence were Masons. Presidents from Washington to Ford were Masons. Not all of them, of course, but many.

The history of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints of which I count myself a member is also intertwined with Masons. The early leaders of the church were Masons. But, the Masonic Lodges kicked them out in the 1840s. In Utah it wasn’t until 1983 that the Masons agreed that members of the church could join. Masons and Mormons both have long memories.

Tonight was a Masons meeting. A Lodge meeting, if you will. We passed two brothers to the degree of Fellowcraft. It’s the second degree in Masonry.

Masonry is making a resurgence in the US. Perhaps it’s because men are looking for something to belong to, something that is bigger than themselves and their social media presence. Something older than themselves.

Stay safe

Rodney M Bliss is an author, columnist and IT Consultant. His blog updates every weekday. He lives in Pleasant Grove, UT with his lovely wife, thirteen children and grandchildren.

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