The other day I thought there must be some videos on YouTube that provided information about Freemasonry. There is a part of fringe fundamentalist Christianity that believes Freemasonry is a Satanic cult snd rails against it and Masonson the Internet.
Right away I found a number that proclaimed Freemasonry as the work of the Devil or as a plot to take over the world. But down in the search results was a link to a video by history.com that purported to reveal the secrets of Masonry, named Secret History of Freemasonry. In an hour and a half I saw the long sweep of historical developments in which Freemasonry had developed a unique framework of brotherhood and equality seasoned with individual freedom, which was unknown to most people of their time - and highly discouraged by the ruling monarchs and religious potentates.
The video explored the relationship between the practicing stonemasons and the developing ideals of the Enlightenment - emphasis on the scientific method, growing desire for democratic decisions and freedom of the individual to explore the the logical ramifications of these ideals. While the video couldn’t get over calling Freemasonry a “secret society” (instead of a society with some secrets), I could forgive this because of its objective and wide-ranging exploration of the beginnings, the traditions, and the relationships that developed from Freemasonry through the Enlightenment and continuing through the American Revolution.
I confirmed again that I am in the right place. Even though the novelty of the ideas of Freemasonry has diminished, it’s principles forged in antiquity and refined by both intellectual and practical experience over centuries are relevant and important today as centralized government and corporate powers attempt more and more to disallow and disparage the value of individual initiative and uniqueness.