Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Times and Seasons, Years and Cycles

Masonic bloggers across the U.S. are announcing the arrival of the upcoming year with a mix of exitement and wistfulness at how fleeting our summer hiatus was.

As I get ready for what is sure to be a busy Masonic year (I'll be installed as Senior Deacon and Historian of my Lodge in October) I'm feeling much the same; July and August provided a much-needed break from the weekly rehearsals, Lodges of Instruction, and stated meetings, but I'm looking forward to seeing my Brothers again and going back to the quarries. It's a feeling that is dimly familiar, and I realize that it's very similar to what I used to feel when returning to school after summer vacation.

One of the best things about Masonry is that it provides a context in which to meet men from a very broad swath of the social fabric of our communities, something I haven't enjoyed since my college years ended in 1996. In college, a student is typically thrown into a dormitory building with other students from all different majors and all different parts of the country, united by your choice of school.

When you join a Masonic lodge, you're typically thrown into a group of men of all different ages and backgrounds, united by the community you live in and the tenets of Freemasonry. The Masonic summer break restores that sense of renewal that we all used to enjoy as students... when we go out into the real world, life often turns into a 365-day-a-year grind. While you still don't get a summer break from your day job (unless you happen to be a teacher,) taking a couple of months away from the Lodge gives you a nice opportunity to reflect on the proceedings of the preceding year, and contemplate the upcoming one.

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