One of the most blatant similarities with Masonry is the whole "Brother" thing. While other churches do use this, notably monks for example, it's one of those things in the LDS which still sticks out. I don't attend anymore but I had a couple of missionaries at my door calling me "Brother ----" which must have sounded so odd to my neighbors. Freemasons use the term "brother" in their lodges and amongst themselves...
An informative, but respectful and balanced, discussion of Masonic parallels in the endowment can be found at www.ldsendowment.org. While the parallels are undeniable, some of the comments that appear on this page exaggerate the similarity. Even if one believes that Joseph Smith created the ceremony (as opposed to the notion that the ceremony is an ancient rite restored by revelation), it isn't really accurate to say that the endowment is "plagiarized" from Masonry. The endowment is more helpfully understood as a Masonic-style ceremony, built around a very different narrative and reflecting a very different theology
The short article dated 8/2/03 about the Mormon Temple Cap and the Scottish Balmoral Bonnet is interesting. The resemblence is definitely there, but Scottish Rite Masonry does not use the Balmoral Bonnet anywhere in its ceremonies, at least not in North America. I don't know about Scotland, but Scottish Rite Masonry started right here in the United States with the Southern Jurisdiction.
It is also my understanding that Scottish Rite Masonry had not yet moved into the geographical regions occupied by the early Church during the time of Joseph Smith. He and the other early Church leaders would have been more familiar with York Rite Masonry.
The Grand Lodge of Texas, located in Waco, has a scale model of a Masonic Lodge Room set up for work in the York Rite ceremony. Should you ever see one like it, you will immediately note the veils separating the room into three sections. Does this sound at all familiar?
I have not yet gone through the York Rite ceremony, so I cannot comment further, but I am planning on doing so. That model has piqued my interest.
32nd degree Scottish Rite Mason.
Past Master of my local Masonic Lodge.
Past District Deputy Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Texas.
Returned Missionary (that was some experience!).
Deacons' Quorum Advisor.
Of course its possible to be both. Just have to learn when to keep your mouth shut. The Masons will readily welcome you into their midst. - 12/20/2003 - K.J.Long, P.M.
I think the temple and all its associated rigamarole is just as ridiculous as everyone else who's commented here thinks it is. But I can't believe no one else has picked up on this point before. Guess none of you are Celtophiles!
Yes, the men's temple headgear resembles a baker's hat, BUT, remember that all the temple ceremonial was cribbed from Freemasonry. In particular, it was taken from Scottish Rite Freemasonry. Sooooooo, use your imagination. The hat is simply a lame, very low-quality copy of a Tam O'Shanter (or, more properly, a Balmoral Bonnet).
Hmmm. So, the temple endowment is a "restoration" of things from ancient Israel??? OH, REALLY! Then why are the male participants arrayed like 1800's Highlanders in their bonnets and green fig-leaf kilt-aprons?
For even more details on the Balmoral Bonnets/Cap click on the image below.
I am a Master Mason and I was just writing to say that there are no books that reveal the secrets of Masonry anywhere. I have read all that claimed to do so but that don't exist. You won't find the secrets of Masonry in books, only in the heart of man can the true secrets of Masonry be discovered. - 06/14/2003 - anon
Wow. That's all I can really say. Or in the words of Neo: "Woah."
On Saturday, a group of us apostates converged on a Masonic center in Los Angeles primarily for a tour. But we were hoping to get some answers. Just how deep was the connection between Masonic rites and the Mormon endowment? What parts of the temple ceremony were Masonic in origin? Did they bear any resemblance to Masonry today?
Ladies and gentlemen, I can tell you that the Mormon temple ceremony was practically plagiarized from the Masonic rites. Every single sign, token, and penalty was taken from Masonry. The True Order of Prayer, the rapping of the mallet, and the Five Points of Fellowship are all Masonic in origin. The compass and the square placed over the breasts, the temple sash, the robes, the apron and even the cap are all from Masonry. And the name of the Sure Sign of the Nail, "Health in the navel, marrow in the bones..." contains the most important keyword in the Masonic rites.
Ladies and gentlemen, in the Lodge room in Santa Monica, seven ExMormons had our all of our burning questions answered. And they were confirmed by a 32nd degree Mason. For me, personally, three hours in the Masonic temple proved more enlightening than all of the time I had spent in the LDS temples.
I left the temple with questions. I left the Masonic center with the answers.
When I discovered this exmormon.org 4 years ago, I went straight to the temple ceremony script. As I was reading the endowment ceremony, my husband walked behind me and took a peek at the screen. In a cautious voice, he asked "What are you reading?". I told him that it was the Mormon temple endowment ceremony. A little upset, he said "No it isn't! That's a Masonic ceremony!". I assured him that it was a temple ceremony and he continued to read with a look of "Holy Shit!!!!" on his face. It was then that he knew that the cult I escaped from was a crock because it was completely plagarized from a group that he is very familiar with.
I may not fully understand this site, but oh well.
I am just writing to all of you , who are blind to reality. Both of these people are awesom people in different ways. They both help people in their community, and others.
I am a Past Honored Queen, of Jobs Daughters.I also was baptized LDS I was babtized at age 8 way before I ever joined Jobs Daughters. Does that make me a hypocrite, no it just shows that I can make choices on my own and be supported by those who really care.
For all the mormons out there who have said or are saying bad things about the masons, and their affliated organizations, and I know you are out there, think twice before you open up your mouths, and speak a wicked tongue, how you feel when people bad mouth you. Vice Versa for any masonic affliates
For those of you who believe in God, which should be everyone who is masonic affliates, or mormons, his teaching is loud and clear " Love One As I have Loved You, also DO Unto others as you would hav ethem do unto you..
I believe that is respect each other, dont speak unkindly of each other, because we all have hearts, and like to be treated fairly, even if we believe in different things, or choose to be part of things others may not.
Exactly, everything I have read here tonight is true, and this is all new to me. I accidently took a 100 mile ride with a family of masons, who have family members who are mormons. They really did talk about it the whole way there, and all the whole way back. Even their sixteen year old son. He was reciting lines of things he had memorized for me. It was a little bit like a ride with ailiens. - 11/09/2002 - from Doniorski
Does anyone know the "secret word" of the International Order of the Rainbow for Girls?????? - 06/16/2002 - from email@example.com
01/30/2002 - Ed
The history of the temple of Solomon is cool.
The LDS temples are horrible. They have mis-interpreted everything.
I still do like Mormonism, its a cool combination of free masonry, Egypticism, business like prophecies, and almost every doctrine right and wrong of 1800's.
I am not surprised by they reactions when somebody leaves Mormonism, after all they have the restoration of "everything".
Unfortunately having all together doesn't mean you have the right thing.....It's like sleeping with your wife, a prostitute and your children, and also sharing bed with your best friend. You just don't do that.....but that's exactly Mormonism.
07/05/2001 - anon
I wish that the Mormons around here could find a decent mason. The bricks on our church are crumbling and falling apart. And they are not all that level, straight or plumb either.
12/06/1999 - A. Grant
The temple ceremonies Joseph Smith Developed for the Nauvoo temple borrow liberally from Masonic initiation ceremonies for the first three degrees, or steps in Masonry. There is a great difference however. You need to understand Masonry a little to appreciate the differences. Rising up from the craft guilds of the Reniasance in Europe, the three degrees in Masonry originally marked the acceptance into apprenticeship, elevation to a Fellow Craft, after one year and then being raised to a Master Mason after seven years. Master Masons were also called "Free Masons", as they were skilled workers who were free to travel whereever jobs needed them. The Masons taught values beside teaching building skills. They are not a religion, but are a religious organization, requiring a belief in God as a condition of membership. Masons frequently use the term "Grand Archiect of the Universe" which was coined by non other than John Calvin. Because of the education Masons provided, they began accepting among them non-operative members who joined for the education. Masons are strong believers in personal freedom. They decry both political and secular despots that would deny individuals the freedom to even ask reasonable questions. Because of this aversion to those who restricted intellectual & personal freedom, the Cathloic church issued a papal bull, or prohibition against membership that stands to this day! Political dictators fear the message of freedom enough that Masons have been among the first individuals despots have tried to eradicate. Being a Mason has been a death sentence in Russia, Germany, Japan, Iraq, Iran and other countries in this century. Needless to say Masons were among the fomenters of the American revolution to escape British tyranny. The constitution is a blend of Masonic idead of personal freedom and the Iriquois Confederacy's design for government. Masons put great importance in trust and individual integrity. The initiation ceremonies emphasized this. There are obligations one commits to and there are penalties. While at one time they may have been more than allegorical, ever since social Masonry was formalized in 1717 they have been allegorical and this is so stated. The initiation ceremonies are set in the un-finished Temple of King Solomon during its construction.This is not understood by many. The ceremonies have nothing to do with worship. They are stories emphasizing loyalty among workers. Joseph Smith had been aware of Masonry since 1826, His brothers were Masons. If Joseph had a reputation that was marred, it is not surprising he was denied membership until Nauvoo as one vote against, or blackball would deny him membership. Masonic "secrets" were not so secret even in 1830. Between 1750 and 1825, no less than ten books were published purporting to reveal Masonic "secrets". One of the more notible publication was that of Morgan in New York. He vanished under mysterious circumstances and some Masons of the period attempted to inhibit prosecution.
Immediately after Joseph was raised to the third degree, or Master Mason, Masonic elements were being used in the temple ceremonies. Many of the church leaders including Brigham Young were also Masons. What is most obviously "borrowed" was word for word sections from the penalty phase of each degree, complete with hand gestures. The Five Points of Fellowship used at the veil until 1991 is also Masonic as are the aprons, sashes and caps. Much symbolism used in the Church came directly from Masonry, including the square and compass on garments, the beehive as a symbol for industry and many more. After Joseph's death the goverining Masonic organization for Illinois pulled the charters of all Masonic lodges in Nauvoo area. Over 1500 members lost their Masonic affilation. Documents suggest that Joseph and others were not abiding by membership requirements to get into Masonry beyond making sure the member has his fees! I believe Herber C. Kimbal was asked about the Mormon connection with Masonry and knowing little about it simply stated it was not surprising they were similar since both originated in King Solomon's temple, but the Mormon's had the "real" version. He was unaware the Masonic ceremonies were only set in the temple and had nothing to do with worship, or that they were written after 1717! While a breech of trust among Masons could result in death of other members by the hands of tyrants, I fail to understand how the same oaths are warranted in a relationship with God. An interesting final note is that there is no open prohibition against Mormons becoming Masons except one reference in the Church's General Handbook of Instruction. "Members should be discouraged from participating in organizations that mimic Temple ceremonies." Now That is a lot of cheek! Steal something, then accuse the people you stole from of mimicing you!
04/11/1999 - source prefers anonymity - LDS Masons
My dad is both a Mormon and a Mason. He asked permission to join the Masons about 7 years ago. It was no problem.
I was a Worthy Advisor (chapter president) for the Rainbow Girls, an organization which is Masonic sponsored. It is less religious than the other Masonic girls' organization, Jobs' Daughters. My bishop attended my installation, along with my first councilor in the Laurel's presidency.
I was Laurel's pres and WA at the same time for a while. A few people made comments to me, on both sides, but it wasn't too bad. Stuff like "Joseph Smith gave Masonic secrets to outsiders!" from the Rainbow Girls, and then "There were Masons in the mob that martyred JS!" from the Mormons.
I totally fell for the Temple of Soloman thing, and patiently explained it over and over when asked. Adults, while they did not tease, were very curious about Mormons, and asked that kind of thing all the time.
No, Masons are NOT Satanic, and they are NOT a religion. They are not, however, anything I would like to be involved with at this point in my life. They are just too creepily like the church in some ways -- think in sync, inc. We LOVE this organization. This organization is so wonderful, blah, blah, blah. Boring. If the organization is so great, why do we have to repeat it every five minutes?
You may want to add a blurb on what the Temple of Soloman explanation is. Basically, the Mormons explain away the similarities between the Masons and themeselves by saying that Masonry came from the temple of Soloman, which was a "real" temple, like the Mormon temples of today. Therefore, the Masonic ceremonies are a corrupted version of the "real" endowment ceremony. That's pretty far-fetched, considering that the Masonic story of how the brotherhood originated from workers building the Temple of Soloman is a myth, and the Temple of Soloman was nothing whatsoever like the Mormon temples in design, ceremonies, exclusivity, etc. Women never entered the T of S., so I'm curious to see how temple weddings per performed there. Ha ha ha!