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  1. ni3f

    Are black people allowed?

    The parallel to the two paths of Freemasonry, "mainstream" and PHL might be compared to the existence of African American churches. The original division was doubtlessly because of segregation. Today, most "mainstream" denominations will welcome African American members -- but Black churches...
  2. ni3f

    Joining the Craft

    I have heard about this happening and it grieves me terribly -- but I want you to know that this is widely regarded as unmasonic in most places. If they don't accept you because they are bigots, they don't deserve you. If the bigotry becomes a demonstrable pattern, it needs to be reported to...
  3. ni3f

    Original Bible translation

    Bialik said that anybody who reads the Bible in translation is like somebody who kisses his mother through a veil. Not everybody can master original languages but they should be wary of the limits of translation and, if they are serious, use multiple translations and read translator's notes...
  4. ni3f

    My petition was accepted

    If you had a good feeling about the interview, it is likely you did just fine. Most of these are really pleasant experiences and most lodges want to grow -- if you are rejected, which is not likely, be philosophic about it and try another lodge. As Groucho Marx said "I would never want to belong...
  5. ni3f

    why did you join the freemasons?

    I wanted to have the same experience of my late father -- I wanted to "connect" with him in some way. Besides, I had a "favorable impression of the institution." I confess to having been attracted by all the secrecy. I am very, very glad I became a mason -- I could never have imagined how...
  6. ni3f

    Chamber of Reflection

    In Washington, DC we have a lodge, La France, which conducts the first three degrees in accordance with the Scottish Rite blue lodge ritual. This is done with the full blessing of the DC GL. I've been to that lodge and can tell you that it is *very* interesting. I think you would have to go to...
  7. ni3f

    Are black people allowed?

    The very fact that there is PH at all is because of racism. Black people weren't welcome in the mainstream. This is akin to the existence of African American churches; most mainstream churches today would be thrilled to have black members, but African Americans have developed their own religious...
  8. ni3f

    Are black people allowed?

    Masons have always been a step or two ahead of the general society -- which is not to say that there haven't been prejudices and discrimination. Freemasonry has been ahead of the curve but hasn't utterly transcended the values of the culture in which it exists. Of course there has been bigotry...
  9. ni3f

    A question of my Jewish brothers

    This is an interesting question -- I'm a rabbi, by the way. I appreciate your desire to identify with the Jewish people and to immerse yourself in our spiritual practices. One can't have too many friends! That being said, there are commandments that are intended for everybody and commandments...
  10. ni3f

    What is the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry?

    Lots of puzzling things is the world of Freemasonry. Secrets that aren't secret. The "ancients" were newer than the "moderns." The Scottish Rite is French and the first time you meet at the SR, they call it a "reunion." Confusing, no? I'll address the last paradox. Brothers might wonder why...
  11. ni3f

    raised today

    Bravo, brother ! Freemason Connect Mobile
  12. ni3f

    German Masonic Home of Tappan, New York

    A magnificent building. If it is not to be restored to Masonic purposes, the stain glass and fitting out to be salvaged -- some lodge might be able to use them. Freemason Connect Premium App
  13. ni3f

    The light bulb joke

    love cigars