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Governance and management; necessary if kept in proportion; numbing if not. Control. It seduces us with the scent of predictability and power. We trade on reality, convincing ourselves freemasons have an ability to foresee the future. The way we look at history is less kind. Think about the way we drop names of great men who happen to have been freemasons to give us a certain panache'. Habit lulls us into distilling, crunching, and compressing centuries of influence and events, enough that we should all cringe at it. Don't think for a moment this obscures the truth; understand has become opaque as a result. Conformity is such a tasty ale. Too many pearls; too much science, mixed to fit known facts. Change or deepen our understanding of masonic history and the outcomes will obvioulsy change. What separates us from our impressions of what we were? Is it building a room for serious conversation without risk riducule? It is titillating to talk about the past. History can minimize complication; robust comrades facing tough entrance requirements; aristocracy rubbing shoulders with commoners. It was the time before uniformity that gives us the greatest sense of mystery. What records extant leave gaps for us to speculate creating treasures for the mind pregnant with promise that membership provides a way to nuture character development.
It is disengenuous to offer something unless we can't deliver. Unfortunately that hasn't stopped us. So the question I ask is this; given that reality is never as keen, as precise, as satisfying as anticipation, all things considered, redefining our beginnings both spiritual and philosophical has the the Masonic Order not lost footing?
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It's good to talk.