Georgia – Sex, Lives and Fornication

georgia bans gay masonsFor the institution that proclaims no man speaks for Freemasonry, the Grand Lodge of Georgia (some 40,000 members strong) took a stand and made just such a proclamation. Their pronouncement, voted upon at a Grand Lodge session, was to proclaim that neither gay men not fornicators (people who have consensual sex out of wedlock) should be allowed admission to the fraternal institution.

The ironic thing is that it seems to be based on the application of an interpretation of the Moral Law which is a theme grasped closely by many who agree with this decision.

The original edict, in a document signed by the Grand Master of Georgia, states (under GEORGIA) Masonic Code 77-108 that:

Masonic Code Section 77-108 shall be hereby amended to add that: Homosexual activity with anyone is prohibited conduct subjecting the offender to Masonic discipline, so that Masonic Code Section 77-108 shall hereafter read as follows:

2015 Masonic Code Section 77-108, Adultery or Fornication

Adultery or fornication with anyone subjects the offender to discipline, but where the women in question is known by the offender to be the wife, widow, mother, daughter, or sister of a Master Mason, there is the added guilt of the breach of a Masonic obligation, and the want of chastity on her part does not excuse the offender. Homosexual activity with anyone subjects the offender to discipline. SO ORDERED and given under my hand and seal as Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons for the State of Georgia and under the seal of the said Grand Lodge, this 9th Day of September, 2015.


Douglas W. McDonald Grand Master
Joseph W. Watson, Grand Secretary

Their entry in the October edition of the Georgia Masonic Messenger (the original link since removed, but viewable here: Masonic Messenger 10 2015 ), the official publication of the Grand Lodge of Georgia (on page 3) reads:

Masonic Code Section 71-102.1 authorizes the Grand Master to issue an Edict which would apply to a significant question or issue which may be enacted as Masonic Law by the Grand Lodge. Resting upon that authority, Edict 2015-1 was issued on September 8 declaring that a Freemason is obliged to obey the moral law and Almighty God, the Grand Architect of the Universe, the Father of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob; that basic moral laws are not man-made Edicts or Decrees, but spring from the eternal justice and wisdom of Almighty God; Freemasons must constantly strive to keep their integrity intact, for it is our integrity that holds our way of life together, and when integrity is lost, all is lost; that good moral character is a pre-requisite for admission into Freemasonry and a strict observance of the moral law is essential for advancement and retention of good standing within the Fraternity; and the importance of the moral law as a fundamental principle of Freemasonry is exemplified by the fact that any act by one of its members involving a violation of the moral law is a Masonic offense, subjecting the offender to discipline; and that homosexuality is contrary to the moral law. The Edict concluded, Homosexual activity with anyone subjects the offender to discipline.” Let us not forget that Webster’s Dictionary defines “irreligious libertine”* as a person who shows a lack of religion and is morally or sexually unrestrained.

This seems to be heavily influenced by a religious rhetoric.

The argument to the text above is that it was specifically written for Georgia Freemasons and not the broader landscape of Freemasonry in other states or countries.

So, theoretically, it shouldn’t (and doesn’t) apply to anyone other than those with the misfortune of living in the state of Georgia. Yet, to make such an edict on what they see as moral or immoral activity casts a VERY long shadow on an institution that prides itself in claiming it “good men better” or spreading the light of brotherly love in an otherwise darkened world. Is this really an issue of violating some invisible or philosophically plastic moral law? Or is it a means to apply a quasi-religious edict onto a subject that was just recently accepted as the law of the land? Is that an allowable stance for an organization to make, especially when it espouses a zero tolerance for religious and political dialog? Or, is it just another form of discrimination meant to foster a “them versus us” issue as a futile attempt to stand head and shoulders in the ranks of society.

The issue of fornication is equally puzzling given we exist in a modern age where civil society has most of the morality laws under control. With that said, its apparently not enough. Whatever the reason, it’s wrong; it’s stupid and blight on anyone or anything associated with the fraternity. Who are they to put into word and rule their disdain for the personal lives of its immediate members and the broader member community around the world to exert defacto judgment on what they do and who with?

Georgia Masonry should be called to reconcile this and be put out of the fold. To NOT disown them is to say that this act of moral social engineering is acceptable and that Freemasonry, as a body, has lost its way.

*Consequently, irreligious libertine, isn’t in the on-line Merriam-Webster Dictionary.

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A devoted student of the Western Mystery Traditions, Greg is a firm believer in the Masonic connections to the Hermetic traditions of antiquity, its evolution through the ages and into its present configuration as the antecedent to all contemporary esoteric and occult traditions. He is a self-called searcher for that which was lost, a Hermetic Hermit and a believer in “that which is above is so too below.” Read more about Greg Stewart.


  1. In my obligation I swore to not be present or take part in the making of any fool ( or woman, etc.) a Freemason… If a man jumped into a vat of toxic waste I would count that as foolish. Likewise, If a man desires to insert himself into the opening where another man expels excrement I would say that is pretty foolish.

    If you have no problem with homos in the fraternity then why not ok the petitioning of those who engage in unnatural acts with animals? Or should we welcome necrophiliacs?

  2. I don’t know why people are wining and crying over this, the Gl of Georgia are well within there rights. I GUESS IT MUST COME DOWN TO A BUNCH OF SYCOPHANTS THAT THINK THEY CAN IMPOSE THEIR VISION OF HOW FREEMASONRY MUST BE ON ALL OF FREEMASONRY, ALL GL’s, & ALL FREEMASONS! And great thing is that it good example of what William Glasser calls Control Psychology, which is why they act like a bunch of histrionic sophist, which why they go on campaign of Unmasonic Conduct of cyberstalking, harassment, spaming, sock puppet profiles, ECT.. In other word, they suffer over the fact that they cannot control what others think, believe, and act, especially the GL Of Georgia.

  3. The one thing that has always drawn me into the Craft is the fact that we, as Freemasons, can agree to disagree, and go on to be loving Brothers. It’s OK to have a different position in politics, in religion, in societal mores yet remain friends and Brothers. It’s like in the old Wild West when every once in awhile you had to check your guns at the door. Entering a Lodge room is where a Freemason checks his political, economic, religious and societal ideology at the door. He can pick them back up when he leaves. But while inside the dome of Brotherly Love and Affection he is not just tolerant but also non judgmental. This tradition of acceptance is what has made Freemasons the peace makers of the world, at least for most of us. It is what has made Masonry the most inclusive not exclusive society in the world. What the Grand Lodge of Georgia has done is not just step over the line into sectarian religion, but it has also brought us back into confrontational, contentious relationships where Freemasonry emphasizes not what brings us together but what divides us. Now we can pit one Brother against another. That my Brothers, is a crying shame.

  4. This issue confirms for me that I joined the wrong fraternity, or more likely, joined with the wrong expectations. Because I agree with the Grand Lodge of Georgia.
    The understanding I had of freemasonry when I was raised, was that we stood for something. One of those “somethings” being morality…You know the parts of the Oath that deal with a brother’s wife, daughter, etc.?
    Yet the implication here is that we’re expected to “tolerate” a brother sleeping with another brother and still consider ourselves an “enlightened” organization?
    So disappointed in this fraternity.

  5. Brother Paul,

    What you expressed is an opinion. You are certainly entitled to your opinion. And you are entitled to your opinion as a Freemason. What you are not entitled to do is to make everybody else hold your opinion in Freemasonry. The Craft only requires a belief in Deity. It does not get more specific than that, and that is on purpose. It has long been decided that sectarian religion and partisan politics divide us and therefore should not be discussed or debated inside the Lodge room or at Masonic events. You expressed a sectarian religious belief, which I said you are entitled to hold, but you are not permitted to proselytize inside the Craft.

    I will remind you that Freemasonry is not a Christian Society. And also that some Christian churches accept homosexuality and even have homosexual clergy. It is not a Jewish Society or a Muslim Society either. How would you feel if a Muslim Brother insisted that Freemasonry accept Sharia Law?

    I will also remind you that acceptance of homosexuality is the law right now. Are we not taught as Freemasons to obey the civil law?

    The tradition of Freemasonry is to be tolerant of beliefs that you do not hold and to be non judgmental. During the Civil War in the United States the only society or organization not to be split by the opinion of slavery and the bitter battles of war was Freemasonry because it held to that tradition. Not even churches held together at that time. But Freemasons did.

    I am truly sorry that this was not explained to you upon your admittance into Freemasonry.

    The United States is a melting pot of many different cultures and religions. We are a very diverse society. Freemasonry stands out as a binding force that unites people that are very different.

    My hope for you, my Brother, is that you can see your way to loving those Brothers who you disagree with just as those Brothers who disagree with you love you anyway.

  6. As I have said about Georgia, it is a Grand Lodge that has a bad reputation. See: My Brother’s Keeper – Open Racism in Georgia Freemasonry –

    Now if a few Mainstream Grand Lodges would pull recognition of Georgia it would get some other rogue Grand Lodges like West Virginia and Arkansas to sit up and take notice. Plus it would give Georgia its just deserve.

  7. “The problem of toleration is remarkably difficult for most everyone because it is so easy to feel good about being intolerant. The highest price we are called upon to pay for freedom is not in taxes to defend the country, nor even on the battlefield. The highest price we must pay for freedom is to allow others to be free.”

    “Religious toleration means that we must allow others the same right to freedom of worship we demand for ourselves, even if we find their practices wrong or repugnant.
    Intellectual toleration means that we must allow the free and full exploration of every idea, even if we think it wrong or dangerous.”

    “Social toleration means that we must allow others to live lifestyles we may find strange or uncomfortable, whether in a commune or in a same sex relationship.”

    “Of all the lessons a man or a woman must learn to be truly human, toleration may well be the hardest.”

    “Tyranny is another form of intolerance. Tyranny does not equate to authority, but with attitude. We don’t call the skilled and caring teacher who maintains order and discipline in his or her class a tyrant, nor the nation which offers protection to another nation while carefully not interfering with the nation so helped, nor the husband or wife who discharges the affair of the household with authority but also love and concern.”

    “The essence of tyranny is selfishness. And if tyranny is selfish in the world of material things, fanaticism is selfishness in the world of ideas and beliefs. Fanaticism is the sort of selfishness that says “I am right. If you do not agree with me, you are wrong, and I have the right to hurt you.”

    “It is ignorance that allows both tyranny and fanaticism to flourish, for only an informed populace can form the basis of freedom. Ignorance is the primary weapon of the tyrant and the fanatic. Both can give good reason why just a little bit of censorship is needed, or why we should control what people think or what they read because otherwise they may ask questions and lose the true faith. The fanatic always wants to benefit others. All he asks in return is your mind and soul.” – Robert G. Davis

  8. as master of my masonic lodge i do not see the relevance of having a koran on my alter.
    therefore i had it disposed of while master. there were no complaints from the brethren.
    there is a difference between ignorance and respect. though i recognise muslims, i do not approve of sharia law or alot of the gibberish in the koran and i don’t care what anyone thinks-i believe what i believe and no one will ever change that.

  9. Brother Al, I agree.
    The current PC trend suggests we throw away common sense in the name of some vague notion of “tolerance”, yet the basis for our conduct, as Freemasons, remains what it has been, that book on the altar and the belief that entails. This smacks of hypocrisy.
    I thought Freemasonry was above social fads, especially those that numerous religious texts denounce as sin.
    James 4:17 “Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.”.
    If we are truly accountable to a higher power, then we must conduct ourselves accordingly, not throw away our beliefs in an effort to blend in with a corrupt society.

  10. QUOTE: ” i don’t care what anyone thinks-i believe what i believe and no one will ever change that.”

    And you take action to alter Freemasonry on the basis of what YOU believe. This is exactly what Freemasonry does not need, someone in power who will codify his own personal beliefs.

    QUOTE: “some vague notion of ‘tolerance’”, – “I thought Freemasonry was above social fads, especially those that numerous religious texts denounce as sin.”

    Again you are trying to insert into Freemasonry your own personal beliefs. This is, once again, your opinion, your interpretation of the Bible, your version of Christianity – AND FREEMASONRY IS NOT A CHRISTIAN SOCIETY.

    Brethren, this is not all about you. And it’s not about changing Freemasonry to conform to your personal beliefs. Hold those beliefs. No one wants to take them away from you. But do not force your will on others. Tolerance is not a vague concept, it is a vital ingredient in the tradition of Freemasonry. Also is not being judgmental.

    But alas that’s what you two have decided to do – to sit in judgment of others instead of leaving that judgment up to God. Freemasonry is one of the most inclusive socities in the world. what you are trying to do is make it exclusive by writing out of the Craft anybody who does not accept your personal beliefs.

    This is exactly what the Grand Master of Florida did when he forced two Brothers to resign becasue their religion was not an Abrahamic one. This is exactly what the Grand Master of West Virginia did when he expelled Past Grand Master Frank Haas.

    Leaving others who you disagree with alone and letting them live their lives without denunciation does not constitute an endorsement of their position. It’s called LIVE AND LET LIVE.

  11. Freemasonry is a private fraternity, who takes good men and makes them better. Because it is a dues paying private club they can refuse anyone for any reason membership. HOWEVER; the time, money, and devotion that are raised and donated for scholarships, needy ppl in the local community, Scottish Rite hospitals, Shriners hospitals and the world wide aid we provide to all men and women (of whatever deity, they believe in; which is not even questioned nor allowed to be brought up) would tell everyone who is speaking negative about about us to LOOK AT WHAT WE DO FOR THE PPL OF THIS WORLD, children with one mommy or two, one daddy or two, burned and maimed children, disabled children, the ppls light bills, water bills, and anything else needed that we pay when they can’t and The Georgia Masonic Children Home And Pep School (yes we have a EXTREMELY LARGE estate in Macon where orphaned and underprivileged children of all needs, race, gender etc.. are not just given a nicer home than pretty much any family know, they are given clothes,computers,
    books, but are also sent to our college preparatory college ALL FREE to them and/or family if they have a family; much like the Scottish Rite or also known as Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta and Shrine’s burn hospitals are all provided with transportation, living accommodations for family and whatever treatment is needed, AT NO CHARGE, ALL OF THESE AND SOOOO MUCH MORE INCLUDING BUILDING HOMES FOR DISABLED VETERANS AND MORE THAN I CAN LIST ARE ALL PROVIDED TO ALL PPL BY US FREEMASONS, SCOTTISH RITE MASONS AND SHRINERS (YES SHRINERS, MOST PPL DON’T REALIZE THEY ARE MASONS). But when it comes to the membership of our groups we are PRIVATE!!! and hold are standards to be members to OUR standards.

  12. Freemasonry is not a private fraternity or organization. Most every Grand Lodge is a public corporation in the state in which they operate. As such they must abide by the rules and regulations of incorporation which take precedence over the Constitution and By-Laws of that Grand Lodge. Freemasonry is a semi-public organization over which the state can make certain requirements of.

  13. I like the way many/some Freemasons are making a sows ear out of a silk purse. Some of the comments would be better placed in the ear of a fellow patron sitting on the stool next to them and not on a masonic venue. Are we entering the, “McCarthy Era” of the Craft? We meet in our Lodge Room and not their living room. Freemasonry has its roots in an intellectual men’s club of free-thinkers, circa 1645. Get with the program or, “Move on down the road”.

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