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Message From The East

Brethren,
 As My time passes in the East, I often find inspiration from others. Mostly I find it within the world directly around me, but every so often I find it from website dedicated to our craft. So is the case with this month’s message. I found this short poem on midnightfreemasons.org:
Untitled
By Brother Brett Thomas

The Master stands, chisel in hand
His canvas is a living stone, his canvas is a man.
Shaving here, honing there, the Master perfects the stone
As time continues onward, the perfect ashlar is shown.

Intemperance, pride, greed and the like
The Master quells with every strike.
The living stones, imperfections all
Fall as dust with the hammer's fall.

The rough stone, chisel, and circumstance are furnished by the Master
My choices are the hammer's strikes, making the perfect ashlar

Within the simple verse, Our Brother from Florida has eloquently summed up our pursuit.
We are always working upon ourselves, it is probably the one facet that sets Masonry apart from all the other “Mutual Aid” organizations that people tend to lump us into. Self-improvement and reflection are at the core of American Freemasonry, that is part of “Making Good Men Better”. We are constantly smoothing and chipping at our ashlar; in fact, I suspect that no man has ever realized his perfect form while confined to this mortal coil.
The second verse shows many of the obstacles we face. It is hard to be a freemason without beaming with pride, but we must find the balance with our humility of being an imperfect soul. We sometimes show an intemperance for younger men as we look upon them as they are now, but must remember that we were also like them once. It took a lot of living to get where we are now, we should keep that in mind when we meet them. We should also be there for them, as others have been there for us. Greed takes many forms from money to glory, fame to love. We as men must keep our passions within bounds. Each of these lessons have been learned, or more precise, are constantly challenged as we walk through our lives. We are Blessed because we have each other to stand with.
I thank Brother Thomas for his words. The hammer falls often and without respite, may they never become silent.

Fraternally,
Robert Cross, WM
Monmouth Lodge No. 172