What is Freemasonry?

What is Freemasonry? It is an important question for you to ponder. There have been a great number of definitions put forth throughout the years and there are nearly as many definitions of Freemasonry as there are Masons. One common definition is: “Freemasonry is a system of morality, veiled in allegory, and illustrated by symbols.” The system of morality to which we refer as Freemasonry is that which every Mason is bound to profess and practice. The elementary principles of Freemasonry are exemplified in the three degrees of the lodge. In joining a local lodge you become a part of the world’s largest Fraternity with a membership of approximately 4,000,000 worldwide, nearly 2,000,000 men in the United States, and 25,000 in Iowa. Each lodge in the State of Iowa operates by authority of a Charter granted by the State organization called “The Grand Lodge.” There is no international or national organization of Symbolic Masonry nor is there a single spokesman for Freemasonry. While we cannot categorically define what Masonry is, we can say with assurance what it is not. It is NOT a cult, a religion, a secret society, or a political group. While Masonry is not a religion it is religious in nature. Belief in a Supreme Being is a fundamental requirement for becoming a Mason. Masonry is a charitable organization, an organization dedicated to strengthening a man’s character, improving his moral and spiritual outlook, and broadening his mental horizons. Masonry seeks to make good men better; not better than others, but better than themselves.