Pagan Blog Project: M is for Masonry (Co-Masonry)

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Co-masonry is a fraternal organisation which admits men and women as its members and also allows men who are part of male only Freemasonry, whom we term “malecraft”,  the ability to attend meetings and join a Lodge if they choose.

To be able to become a co-mason you have to believe in a higher power whom we call “The Great Architect” and it doesn’t matter what religion you are.  In my lodge there has been Christian, Catholic, Buddhist, Jewish and Pagan members.  You also have to live life on the “level” ie have no criminal records or have participated in anything untoward which could besmirch your reputation.  Lastly you have to keep your vows and retain the secret lore imparted to you in Lodge.

The order I belong to is part of the global fraternity “Le Droit Humain” here in Australia.  The teachings and traditions of Freemasonry is the basis of the order, whilst using masonic ritual and symbolism as its focus with respects to searching for the truth.  On a personal level, members are encouraged to raise their personal value without dogma and as a whole, members are encouraged to unite together to converse about theosophy and spirituality whilst respecting each other’s personal differences.

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Maria Desraismes

Le Droit Humain was founded in France in the late nineteenth century by Maria Deraismes and Georges Martin.  Maria was an advocate for the rights of women and children whilst also being a journalist.  Georges was a senator and councillor of Paris who also was very much involved in the campaigning rights of women and children.

Maria was the first female Freemason to be initiated on 14th January 1882 into the malecraft Lodge “Les Libres Penseurs” (The Freethinkers) in Pecq just west of Paris which was quite scandalous in Freemasonry at the time.  It wasn’t until 11 years later when she and Georges created the first co-masonic lodge in order to establish equality for men and women in masonry.  The two were key players during women’s suffrage and children’s rights and as such worked tirelessly for their equality of rights in French society. Le Droit Humain was the first Co-Masonic Order as well as the first international Masonic Order.  The order spread through Europe and then moved throughout other continents, establishing lodges throughout the world. Notable co-masons connected to Le Droit Humain include social activist Annie Besant who brought co-masonry to the English speaking world.

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Annie Besant

I personally discovered co-masonry when I attended the Tarot Conference which the ATS (Association of Tarot Studies) held back in 2005.  A few years later I was an initiated master mason of co-masonry.

In my lectures I have given in lodge, I have compared masonry to the magickal and spiritual pursuits I have a deep interest in.  The ones which I am most proud of was the connection of Ancient Egypt to Masonry, Cleopatra as Master Mason and comparing rituals in traditional initiation style Wicca (Gardnerian) to Masonry (none of which can be shared due to my masonic vows).

Comasonry’s main focus is theosophy through ceremonial style rituals and that is what drew me to it.  One thing I did find quite intriguing is that I had been seeing visions and dreams of the “All Seeing Eye” ever since I can remember and it didn’t really click why, until I entered the lodge room as a guest visitor and conversed with a 33rd degree member.  I can also honestly say that my 3rd degree was the most significantly powerful and life changing initiation I have ever gone through in my life and considering I have gone through a few initiations, this only highlighted that I was on the right path.

More information on Le Droit Humain can be found here:

http://www.droit-humain.org/en/

Semper fidelis

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2 comments on “Pagan Blog Project: M is for Masonry (Co-Masonry)

  1. Wow, not only are you a fellow FOI member, but a fellow Co-Mason as well? I’m not currently a member of any body but I was a member of EOIC.

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