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Freemasonry and women

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The subject of women and Freemasonry is complex and without an easy 

explanation. Traditionally, only men can be made Freemasons in Regular 

Freemasonry.   Many Grand Lodges do not admit women because they believe

 it would break the ancient Masonic Landmarks. However, there are many 

non-mainstream Masonic bodies that do admit both men and women or exclusively

 women. Furthermore, there are many female orders associated with regular 

Freemasonry, such as the Order of the Eastern Star, the Order of the Amaranth,

 the White Shrine of Jerusalem, the Social Order of Beauceant and the Daughters

 of the Nile.


The United Grand Lodge of England (UGLE), and others concordant in what the

Malecraft call regular tradition (Mixed-Gender and Women-only bodies consider 

themselves as "regular" as do the Men-only bodies), do not formally recognize 

any Masonic body that accepts women. The UGLE has stated since 1998 that 

two English women's jurisdictions are regular in practice (The Order of Women 

Freemasons and The Honourable Fraternity of Ancient Freemasons), except for 

their inclusion of women, and has indicated that, while not formally recognized, 

these bodies may be regarded as part of Freemasonry, when describing 

Freemasonry in general. In North America, neither so-called "mainstream" 

Freemasonry nor Prince Hall Freemasonry accept women, but rather have 

associated separate bodies, which are "Masonic" in character, but not Masonic 

in their content.

Honourable Fraternity of Ancient Freemasons

The history of the Honourable Fraternity of Ancient Freemasons in particular 

cannot be described without reference to the history of the Women’s movement

 in Masonry in general. Quoted from a pamphlet published in 1988 by Enid Scott

 a former Assistant Grand Master of the Order, entitled "Women in Freemasonry:"

"It was in 1902 that the first lodge of Co-Masons was formed in London and that

 importation from France soon snowballed. But within a few years some of its 

members became uneasy regarding the course being taken by the governing 

body in Paris. They felt that their ancient forms were in jeopardy and a departure

 from their traditional style was taking place; history was being repeated, for it 

was a similar state that had arisen in regular Freemasonry in the mid-18th 

century. Various members resigned from the Order and formed themselves into

 a Society from which was to emerge the Honourable Fraternity of Antient 

Masonry, but still as an association for men and women. On 5 June 1908 a 

Grand Lodge was formed with a Reverend Brother as Grand Master. He was 

the first and only male Grand Master and held that office for four years before 

retiring through ill health. His successor commenced the continuing line of 

female Grand Masters. Approximately ten years later it was decided to restrict 

admission to women only but to allow existing male members to remain. Within

 a very short period the title was changed to the Order of Women Freemasons 

but the form of address as ‘Brother’ remained, the term ‘Sister’ having been 

discontinued soon after the formation in 1908 as it was deemed unfitting for 

members of a universal Brotherhood of Freemasons. It is also of some interest

 to note that history was repeated again , in that the Royal Arch became the 

subject of a division in their ranks, rather on the lines of the Antients and 

Moderns years before the Union in 1813. A group of its members wished to

 include the Royal Arch in the system but failed to obtain authority from their 

Grand Lodge , which caused them to secede and form the first Lodge of yet 

another Order - The Honourable Fraternity of Ancient Freemasons, two Grand 

Lodges running in parallel was almost a carbon copy performance, but in this 

case the time for a Union, similar to that which took place in 1813, is yet to come."

The Honourable Fraternity of Ancient Freemasons was founded in 1913 and the

 first Grand Master was Mrs Elizabeth Boswell-Reid who held that Office from 

1913 to 1933 ; she was succeeded by her daughter Mrs Seton Challen.

Justification for exclusion

Mainstream Masonic Grand Lodges justify the exclusion of women from 

Freemasonry for several reasons. The structure and traditions of modern day 

Freemasonry is based from the operative medieval stonemasons of Europe. 

These operative masonic guilds did allow women to join, though they were few

 in number (See "Haunted Chambers: the Lives of Early Women Freemasons", 

by Karen Kidd, Cornerstone Book Publishers, 2009). Many Grand Lodges are of

 the opinion that altering this structure would completely change Freemasonry.

 Furthermore, the so-called mainstream Grand Lodges adhere to the masonic 

landmarks by a number of sources, beginning in early 18th century (there is no

 universal agreement on a list of these Landmarks), which are considered 

unchangeable. One of these landmarks, in many Male-only Obediences, 

specifies that a woman is not to be made a mason.  Finally, in many Male-onl

 jurisdictionsm most of them in the United States, Masons swear "not to be 

present at the making of a woman a Mason" in their obligations.  Many 

masons believe that regardless of their opinions of women in masonry, they 

cannot break their obligation.

Female Masons in Regular Masonic Bodies

There have been a few reported cases of a woman joining a regular masonic 

lodge. These cases are exceptions and are debated by masonic historians.

One account of a woman being admitted to Freemasonry in the 18th century is 

the case of Elizabeth Aldworth (born St Leger), who is reported to have 

surreptitiously viewed the proceedings of a Lodge meeting held at Doneraile 

House, the private house of her father, first Viscount Doneraile, a resident of 

DoneraileCounty CorkIreland. Upon discovering the breach of their secrecy, 

the Lodge resolved to admit and obligate her, and thereafter she proudly 

appeared in public in Masonic clothing.  In the early part of the 18th century, 

it was quite customary for Lodges to be held in private houses. This Lodge was

 duly warranted as Lodge number 150 on the register of the Grand Lodge of Ireland.

Women as Operative Masons

It is not generally known, but researchers have shown that records do exist 

which confirm that women were in fact operative masons, and even presided 

over Lodges of Operative Masons.

The Regius Manuscript, dating from about 1390, is the oldest manuscript yet 

discovered relating to Masonry. Two extracts are of particular interest:

Yn that onest craft to be parfytte; And so uchon schulle techyn othur, And

 love together as sister and brother In that honest craft to be perfect; And so

 each one shall teach the other, And love together as sister and brother. 

Articulus decimus. The thenthe artycul ys for to knowe, Amongst the craft, 

to hye and lowe, There schal no mayster supplante other, But be togeder as

 systur and brother, Yn that curyus craft, alle and som, That longuth to a

 maystur mason. Tenth article. The tenth article is for to know, Among the

 craft, to high and low, There shall no master supplant another, But be 

together as sister and brother, In this curious craft, all and some, that 

belongeth to a master mason.

However, it should be noted that not everyone agrees with these interpretations

 of the Regius Manuscript. The following examples were recorded by Enid Scott

 in her pamphlet, "Women and Freemasonry:"

It is on record that a woman mason was responsible for the carving of the 

porch on the tower of Strasbourg Cathedral. It was begun in 1277 by the 

Architect, Erwin of Steinbach, and his daughter Sabina, who was a skilful 

mason, executed this part of the work herself In the records of Corpus 

Christi Guild at York, it is noted in 1408 that an apprentice had to swear to

 obey "the Master, or Dame, or any other Freemason." Women members 

were recorded in the Masons’ Company in the 17th century as being 

non-operative. Of course at this time ‘non-operative’ meant not being

 engaged in the physical work, but acting in the capacity of accepting 

orders for assignments, and not what we would now refer to as

 ‘speculative masonry’. Such women were called ‘Dames’ to distinguish 

them from Master Masons. Margaret Wild, a mason’s widow, was such a 

one and was made a member of the Masons’ Company in 1663 A minute 

dated 16th April 1683, from the Lodge of Edinburgh refers to agreement

 that a widow may, with the assistance of a competent freeman, receive the

 benefit of any orders which may be offered her by customers of her late 

husband, such freeman being prohibited from taking any share of the profits

 from such assignments. One day later on 17th April, the records of St Mary's

 Chapel Lodge give an instance of the legality of a female occupying the 

position of 'Dame' or 'Mistress in a masonic sense. But it was only to a very

 limited extent that widows of master masons could benefit by the privilege.

 From the manuscripts which make up the Old Charges, the York MS no 4

(Grand Lodge of York) dated 1693 refers to the "Apprentice charge" and 

instructs that, "One of the elders taking the Booke and hee or shee that is 

to be made mason, shall lay their hands thereon, and the charge shall be 

given". Of course this has been disputed by some masonic historians who

 claim that the "shee" is a mistranslation of "they", but others including 

the Rev. A. F. A. Woodford, accept it as evidence of the admission of 

females into masonic fellowship, especially as many of the other guilds 

at this time were comprised of women as well as men.[citation needed]

The Masons’ Court Book records the names of two widows in 1696.

In 1713-14, we find the unusual instance of Mary Bannister, the daughter of a 

Barking barber, being appointed to a mason for a term of seven years, the fee

 of five shillings having been paid to the Company.

Several instances of male apprentices being assigned to work under female 

masters during the period 1713-1715 appear in the records of the "Worshipful

 Company of Masons" in MS 5984 of the Guildhall Library in London.

It should be remembered that all these instances occurred before the formation 

of the first Grand Lodge in London in 1717. In 1723 the Rev. James Anderson

 was given the task of issuing a set of Constitutions, which were revised in 

1738, when he introduced the idea that women were prohibited

 from becoming masons



The systematic admission of women into International Co-Freemasonry began 

in France in 1882 with the initiation of Maria Deraismes into the Loge Libre 

Penseurs (Freethinkers Lodge), under the Grande Loge Symbolique de 

France.  In 1893, along with activist Georges Martin, Maria Deraismes

 oversaw the initiation of sixteen women into the first Lodge in the world to have

 both men and women as members, from inception, creating the jurisdiction 

Le Droit Humain (LDH)

Again, these are regarded by most of Malecraft Freemasonry

 as "irregular" bodies, though all Masonic Orders consider 

themselves to be "regular". The Malecraft bodies long have 

claimed the right to say which Masons (usually themselves) 

are "regular" and which are "irregular".

However, Since no Masonic body has any authority whatsoever over any other

 Masonic bodies, each Freemason is as "regular" within his/her own order as is

 every other Freemason in their Order.

Le Droit Humain and a number of other masonic organisations, referred to as

 "irregular" by most Malecraft bodies, have a presence in North America which

 are open to women either in an androgynous or wholly feminine manner. These

 orders work similar rituals to the larger Malecraft Freemasonic Orders and their

 work contains similar moral and philosophical content as is found in Malecraft


In the Netherlands, there is a completely separate, although Masonically allied,

 sorority for women, the Order of Weavers (OOW), which uses symbols from 

weaving rather than stonemasonry.

The rite of adoption for female lodges originated in France. 

The Grand Orient of France and other Masonic bodies in the Continental 

European tradition fully recognize Co-Freemasonry and women's Freemasonry.


by catherine yronwode

Can women be Freemasons?

The answer is YES.

To understand the role of women in Freemasonry, it is necessary to go back

 into the history of the fraternity. It has been said that exclusion of women from

 the craft forms one of the "ancient landmarks" of the order. Is this true?

The question is answered in five parts:

17th Century: 


Proof that women were made Masons in ancient operative lodges

Let us begin with the historical record. The following was sent to me by 

Brother Bill Edwards in 1995. It consists of a short excerpt from a long talk 

that the Very Worshipful and Reverend Neville B. Cryer, Past Provincial 

Grand Master of Surrey, Past Grand Chaplain of the Grand Lodge of England, 

Chairman of the Heritage Committee of York, and member of the Quator 

Coronati Lodge of Research, gave to the Finger Lakes Chapter of the 

Philalethes Society in March, 1995.

BY V:. W.: and Rev. NEVILLE B. CRYER 
MASONIC TIMES, May, 1995, Rochester, New York

In 1693 we have the York Manuscript No. 4, belonging to the 

Grand Lodge of York, which relates how when an Apprentice is admitted

 the 'elders taking the Booke, he or _shee_ [sic] that is to be made Mason

 shall lay their hands thereon, and the charge shall be given.' Now I have to

 tell you, that my predecessors in Masonic Research in England from 

Hughen and Vibert and from all the rest onward, have all tried to pretend 

that the 'shee' is merely a misprint for 'they.' I now am the Chairman of the 

Heritage Committee of York. I know these documents; I've examined them,

 and I'm telling you, they say 'she,' without any question.

Of course, we have a problem, haven't we; to try to explain that. 

My predecessors would not try to explain this; they were too male oriented.

 The fact remains that, there it is, in an ancient document of a 17th century 

date. That this could have been the case seems all the more likely as that in

 1696 two widows are named as members in the Operative masons Court.

 Away in the South of England, we read in 1714 -- that's before the 

Grand Lodge of England -- of Mary Bannister, the daughter of a barber 

in the town of Barking, being apprenticed as a Mason for 7 years with a 

fee of 5/- which she paid to the Company.


18th Century: 

Women Freemasons prior to the formation of the Grand Lodge of England

Turning next to the subject of actual cases of women who were made Masons

 in speculative rather than operative lodges, there is quite a bit of evidence to 

support the contention that this was at one time permitted. The most famous

 (and best-documented) of these women Masons was Mrs. Aldworth, made a 

Mason in the 1700s. Here is a brief account of her Masonic career, as written 

in 1920 by Dudley Wright and posted to the internet in 1994 by William Maddox.

THE BUILDER, August 1920

Although the Antient Charges forbid the admission or initiation of women

 into the Order of Free and Accepted Masons, there are known instances 

where as the result of accident or sometimes design the rule has been 

broken and women have been duly initiated. The most prominent instance

 is that of the Hon. Elizabeth St. Leger, or, as she afterwards became, on 

marriage, the Hon. Mrs. Aldworth, who is referred to sometimes, though 

erroneously, as the "only woman who over obtained the honour of initiation

 into the sublime mysteries of Freemasonry."

The Hon. Elizabeth St. Leger was a daughter of the first Viscount Doneraile,

 a resident of Cork. Her father was a very zealous Freemason and, as was

 the custom in his time -- the early part of the eighteenth century - held an 

occasional lodge in his own house, when he was assisted by members of 

his own family and any brethren in the immediate neighbourhood and 

visitors to Doneraile House. This lodge was duly warranted and held the 

number 150 on the Register of the Grand Lodge of Ireland.

The story runs that one evening previous to the initiation of a gentleman

 named Coppinger, Miss St. Leger hid herself in the room adjoining the one

 used as a lodgeroom. This room was at that time undergoing some 

alterations and Miss St. Leger is said to have removed a brick from the 

partition with her scissors and through the aperture thus created witnessed

 the ceremony of initiation. What she saw appears to have disturbed her so

 thoroughly that she at once determined upon making her escape, but failed

 to elude the vigilance of the tyler, who, armed with a sword stood barring 

her exit. Her shrieks alarmed the members of the lodge, who came rushing

 to the spot, when they learned that she had witnessed the whole of the 

ceremony which had just been enacted. After a considerable discussion 

and yielding to the entreaties of her brother it was decided to admit her 

into the Order and she was duly initiated, and, in course of time, became 

the Master of the lodge.

According to Milliken, the Irish Masonic historian, she was initiated in 

Lodge No. 95, which still meets at Cork, but there is no record extant of her

 reception into the Order. It is, however, on record that she was a subscriber

 to the Irish Book of Constitutions, which appeared in 1744 and that she 

frequently attended, wearing her Masonic regalia, entertainments that were

 given under Masonic auspices for the benefit of the poor and distressed.

 She afterwards married Mr. Richard Aldworth of Newmarket and when she

 died she was accorded the honour of a Masonic burial. She was cousin to

 General Antony St. Leger, of Park Hill, near Doncaster, who, in 1776, 

instituted the celebrated Doncaster St. Leger races and stakes.

This picture of Elizabeth Aldworth dressed in her Masonic regalia was published

 in Robert Freke Gould's "Concise History of Freemasonry." The original from 

which the engraving was made is said to be a portrait painting in the possession

 of her descendents. The image was scanned and sent to me by Sandra Hesse.

In his talk to the chapter of the Philalethes Society, cited above, Neville B. Cryer

 described the well-known particulars of the initiation of Elizabeth St. Ledger

 (later Elizabeth Aldworth) as a Speculative Mason -- and he noted that this 

occurred in 1712, before the Grand Lodge of England was formed -- and thus

 before it was declared that the exclusion of women was an "ancient landmark,"

 and a stop was put to female participation in the Craft.

Numerous other examples of females joining Masonic lodges could be given

 here (Cryer and Wright cite several each), but lack of space forbids. The pattern

 set by Elizabeth Aldworth -- of rare and exceptional cases of women being made

 Masons -- was the norm from the time of the establishment of the GLoE until

 the 19th century advent of Co-Masonry, a mixed-gender order of the Craft. 

19th Century: 

A brief history of mixed-gender orders of Freemasonry

Here is a history of the Co-Masonic fraternity as supplied by Brother Wright 

and posted to the internet by Brother Maddox:

THE BUILDER, November 1920

In 1879 several Chapters owning allegiance to the Supreme Council of 

France of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, at the instigation of the 

Grand Orient, seceded from that allegience and reconstituted themselves

 as La Grande Loge Symbolique de France. One of these Chapters, bearing

 the name of Les Libres Penseurs, meeting at Pecq, a village of Seine et 

Oise, in November 1881, proposed to initiate into Freemasonry, Mlle. 

Maria Desraimes, a well-known writer on Humanitarian and women suffrage

 questions, which they did on 14th January, 1882, for which act the Lodge

 or Chapter was suspended. Mlle. Desraimes was instrumental in bringing

 into the ranks of Freemasonry several other well-known women in France, 

with the result that an Androgynous Masonic body, known as 

La Grande Loge Symbolique Ecossaise was formed on 4th April, 1893

 although its jurisdiction at that time extended over only one lodge, that 

known as Le Droit Humain, which came into being on the same day, and 

which, in 1900, adopted the thirty degrees of the Ancient and Accepted 

Scottish Rite.

One of the principal workers in the formation of this new Grand lodge was

 Dr. Georges Martin, at one time a member of the Lodge Les Libres Penseurs. 

The schismatic movement spread to Paris and Benares and afterwards to 

London, at which last-named place, in September, 1902, the Lodge

 "Human Duty," now No. 6 on the Co- Masonry Register, was consecrated. 

The title "Co-Masonry" in lieu of the earlier term "Joint Masonry" was 

adopted in 1905.


20th Century: 

Mixed-gender and all-female Masonry around the world

In 1903, Co-Masonry came to the United States. In 1918, according to Neville 

Cryer, Elizabeth St. Leger Aldworth's direct descendent, Alicia St. Leger 

Aldworth, joined the mixed-gender order. By 1922, there were more than 

450 Co-Masonic lodges around the world, according to Masonic historian 

Arthur Edward Waite, writing in "The New Enclyclopedia of Freemasonry."

Here are some 20th century female Masons in full regalia. These photos were

 printed in the Regina (Canada) Leader-Post newspaper on January 6, 1939. 

Thanks to Ray Salmon of Swift Current, Saskatchewan, Canada, for the scan.

The original newspaper caption was as follows [with my comments in brackets]:

With old appropriate ritual and formality, Mrs. Seton Challen (left) was
 recently enthroned for life as the most worshipful, the Grand Master of
 the Honourable Fraternity of Ancient Freemasons, at the Masonic temple
 in London. [It is unclear from context whether this is London, England, 
or London, Ontario, Canada.] This 25-year-old organization
 [founded in 1914] works from the first to the 33rd degree, and claims to
 give women Masonry in its pure form and in its entirety.

Mrs. Challen is a daughter of the organizer of the lodge, and is herself the

 last of the founders. At the right is the lodge's grand sword bearer

 [i.e. Tyler], Mrs. Phylis Sutton Vane, during the installation ceremony, 

which lasted three hours.

There are at present Co-Masonic lodges in at least 50 nations, including the 

U.S., Canada, Britain, Australia, Greece, Holland, Brazil, Chile, Peru, Mexico,

 Belgium, and Venezuela. Androgynous jurisdictions worldwide include 

Le Droit

Humain, based in France, and the American Federation of Human Rights, based

 in the U.S.A. All-female jurisdictions include the Grand Loge Feminine de France

 and the Lady Masons of Great Britain.

Although official "recognition" does not exist between bodies such as the 

United Grand Lodge of England and The American Federation of Human Rights,

 there are cordial relationships and mutual respect between Masons and 

Co-Masons, particularly on the internet.

Neville Cryer ended his talk to the Finger Lakes Chapter of the Philalethes 

Society with a call for male Masonry to recognize female Masonry. "After all," 

he said, "if a woman is good enough to be the wife, mother, sister, or daughter

 of a Mason, she ought to be good enough to be his 'Brother.' The Men's order

 recognizes the coloured races, but refuses recognition to their own kith and kin."

 Until such recognition comes, women who wish to become Masons -- and men

 who wish to work "on the level" with women -- are encouraged to seek out a 

Co-Masonic lodge.


And where you may enquire with further questions

Here are the answers to the most frequently asked questions about 


A) Do Co-Masons believe in a Supreme Being?/Do they have an open VSL 

in lodge?/Do they operate clandestine lodges?/Do they allow men to join?

The answers to these and similar questions are contained in the Principles 

of Co-Freemasonry, as listed by Brother Dudley Wright and posted to the 

internet in 1994 by William Maddox:

THE BUILDER, February 1921

1. Co-Freemasonry asserts, in accordance with the ancient declarations 
of Freemasonry, the existence of a Creative Principle, or Supreme Being,
 under the title of "The Great Architect of the Universe."

2. It maintains an open "Volume of the Sacred Law" in every lodge, when

 duly formed for Masonic purposes.

3. It maintains the ancient landmarks of Freemasonry.

4. It withholds recognition from all irregular and clandestine meetings,

 or lodges not holding proper charter.

5. It imposes no restrictions on the free search for Truth, and to secure 

that freedom exacts tolerance from all its members.

6. It is open to men and women, without distinction of race or religion, 

who are free, of good report, and abide by strict morals.

7. It pledges its members to obedience to the laws of the country, loyalty

 to their nation or national sovreign, silence with regard to Masonic 

secrets, a high standard of honour, and ceaseless endeavour to promote

 the welfare of humanity.

8. Every Freemason is bound faithfully to observe the decisions of the

 Supreme Council to which he or she owes allegiance.

B) Why was Co-Freemasonry started?

Those who do not fully appreciate the seriousness of purpose that links the 

origins of Co-Masonry to the Female Suffrage movement of the late 19th and 

early 20th centuries may enjoy this quote from the August 7, 1907 Certificate 

of Incorporation of The American Federation of Human Rights in 

Washington, D.C. (and as such on file as a matter of public record):

"The particular business and objects of this society are to demand equal 
rights for both sexes before the law, to labor according to the Constitution
 and General By-Laws to be made and adopted by the society for the 
mutual improvement of its members by combating ignorance under all its
 forms, the building of human character, the pratice of solidarity, the 
upholding of high standards of honor and of social justice with a kindly 
feeling towards all, and a ceaseless endeavor to promote the moral and 
material welfare of the human race, and to that end, to organize and to 
conduct throughout the United States of America, branches or Lodges 
of Co-Masonry..."

(Similar language persists in modern AFHR articles of incorporation, all of them

 also on file as matters of public record.)

C) Are Co-Masonic rites the same as American male Masonic rites?

According to Masonic historian Arthur Edward Waite, writing in

 "The New Encyclopedia of Freemasonry" (1922), American and British male 

Masons would recognize and follow Co-Masonic work with ease, for the allegories

 and symbols are universal throughout Freemasonry. However, in keeping with 

its European origin, Co-Masonry makes use of a European-style Chamber of 

Reflection prior to initiaiton -- which the majority of British and American male 

Masonic lodges do not.

The Three Degrees of Craft Masonry

Below is a brief examination of the three degrees and what the candidate for admission can expect to learn by partaking in them.

1st� Entered Apprentice
The first degree of Craft Masonry, the Entered Apprentice Degree is symbolic of birth. The candidate in a state of darkness is brought into the lodge not knowing what will follow but trusting in his guide to lead him along the way in his quest for light (knowledge). While little of an historical sense is revealed to him, he is instructed about the inner workings and principles of the craft and during the Junior Warden's lecture is taught the antiquity of the society as well as the symbolism of King Solomon's Temple and its building, completion and dedication.

2nd� Fellowcraft Degree
The second degree of Craft Masonry, the Fellowcraft Degree is symbolic of life. The candidate begins by proving that he is in possession of the lessons learned in the former degree. He is instructed in the advancement of the operative workmen of biblical and medieval times and how they were paid for their labors. The lecture presented by the Senior Warden furthers the Fellowcraft's understanding of the completion of King Solomon's Temple and the importance therein.

3rd� Master Mason
The third degree of Craft Masonry, the Master Mason Degree is symbolic of death. Like the Fellowcraft degree the candidate begins by proving that he is in possession of the lessons learned in the former degree. He is taught the legend of Hiram Abiff the Grand Master of the Masons who built Solomon's Temple and how he was slain for not betraying the secret of a Master Mason. The candidate is then made to represent the fallen Master Mason as a lesson in preparing for the life that lies beyond this one. The lecture presented by the Master furthers the newly raised Master Mason's understanding of the legendary history, symbolism and inherent philosophies of Freemasonry.





"Women" redirects here. For other uses, see Woman (disambiguation). For other uses, see Women (disambiguation).


woman (pl: women) is a female human. The term woman is usually reserved for an adult, with

the term girl being the usual term for a female child or adolescent. However, the term woman is also sometimes used to identify a female human, regardless of age, as in phrases such as "Women's rights".


The Old English wifman meant "female human" (man or mann had a default meaning of "male human," but could also be used generically to refer to a person of unspecified gender, corresponding to Modern English "one" or "someone").  The medial labial consonants coalesced to create the modern form "woman"; the initial element, which meant "female," underwent semantic narrowing to the sense of a married woman ("wife").

A very common Indo-European root for woman, *gwen-, is the source of English queen (Old English cwēn primarily meant woman, highborn or not; this is still the case in Danish, with the modern spelling kvinde, as well as in Swedish kvinna), as well as gynaecology (from Greek gynē), banshee fairy woman (from Irish bean woman,  fairy) and zenana (from Persian zan). The Latin fēmina, whence female, is likely from the root in fellāre (to suck), referring to breastfeeding.

The symbol for the planet Venus is the sign also used in biology for the female sex. It is a stylized representation of the goddess Venus's hand mirror or an abstract symbol for the goddess: a circle with a small equilateral cross underneath (Unicode: ♀). The Venus symbol also represented femininity, and in ancient alchemy stood for copper. Alchemists constructed the symbol from a circle (representing spirit) above an equilateral cross (representing matter).


Further information: girlladymotherwifegoodwifewidowmaidmaiden, and virgin

Womanhood is the period in a female's life after she has transitioned through childhood and adolescence, generally age 18. Puberty generally begins at about age 10, followed by menarche at age 12 to 13. Many cultures have rites of passage to symbolize a girl's coming of age, such as confirmation in some branches ofChristianitybat mitzvah in Judaism, or even just the custom of a special celebration for a certain birthday (generally between 12 and 21), like theQuinceañera of Latin America. The word woman can be used generally, to mean any female human, or specifically, to mean an adult female human as contrasted with girl. The word girl originally meant "young person of either sex" in English; it was only around the beginning of the 16th century that it came to mean specifically a female child. The term girl is sometimes used colloquially to refer to a young or unmarried woman, however during the early 1970s feminists challenged such use because the use of the word to refer to a fully grown woman may cause offence. In particular, previously common terms such as office girl are no longer used.

Conversely, in certain cultures which link family honor with female virginity, the word girl is still used to refer to a never-married woman; in this sense it is used in a fashion roughly analogous to the obsolete English maid or maiden. Referring to an unmarried female as a woman may, in such a culture, imply that she is sexually experienced, which would be an insult to her family.

In some settings, the use of girl to refer to an adult female is a common practice (such as girls' night out), even among some elderly women. In this sense, girl may be considered to be the analogue to the British word bloke for a man, although it again fails to meet the parallel status as an adult. Some feminists cite this lack of an informal yet respectful term for women as misogynistic; they regard non-parallel usages, such as men and girls, assexist.[citation needed]

There are various words used to refer to the quality of being a woman. The term "womanhood" merely means the state of being a woman, having passed the menarche; "femininity" is used to refer to a set of supposedly typical female qualities associated with a certain attitude to gender roles; "womanliness" is like "femininity", but is usually associated with a different view of gender roles; "femaleness" is a general term, but is often used as shorthand for "human femaleness"; "distaff" is an archaic adjective derived from women's conventional role as a spinner, now used only as a deliberatearchaism; "muliebrity" is a neologism (derived from the Latin) meant to provide a female counterpart of "virility", but used very loosely, sometimes to mean merely "womanhood", sometimes "femininity" and sometimes even as a collective term for women. END OF WIKIPEDIA INFORMATION.


Women Priests — No Chance



There is a general assumption, especially in North America and Europe, that the Catholic Church’s insistence on a male priesthood is an obscure anomaly, which endures only because a Polish pope has refused to move with the times.

But everyone agrees that the Catholic Church will one day ordain women. Surely it’s just this pope who is holding things back? The next one is bound to change the rule!”

The point is made frequently and always with the same confidence. There is a general assumption, at least in Europe and North America, that the Catholic Church’s insistence on a male priesthood is an obscure anomaly, which endures only because a Polish pope has, in the 1990s, refused to move with the times.

Yet the times have often favored a female priesthood and never more so than when Christ ordained His first priests, nearly 2,000 years ago. Virtually all the pagan religions of His day had priestesses, and it would have been entirely normal and natural for Him to choose women for this task. He had, moreover, a number of excellent potential candidates, from His own Mother, who accompanied Him at His first miracle and stood with Him as He suffered on the cross, to Mary Magdalene or the women of Bethany. Instead, He chose only men, and He remained immovable on this, continuing right to the end to exhort and train them all, leaving thus a Church which turned out to be safely founded on a rock. From those twelve men a direct line of apostolic succession has given the Catholic Church the bishops and priests it has today.

In the Church’s latest statement on this matter, Pope John Paul II, using his full authority as the successor of Peter, states categorically that the Church cannot — not will not, but cannot — ordain women, now or in the future. The Catechism of the Catholic Church sets it out clearly, quoting the decree Inter insigniores:

Only a baptized man (vir) receives sacred ordination. The Lord Jesus chose men (viri) to form the college of the twelve apostles, and the apostles did the same when they chose collaborators to succeed them in their ministry. The college of bishops, with whom the priests are united in the priesthood, makes the college of the twelve an ever-present and ever-active reality until Christ’s return. The Church recognizes herself to be bound by this choice made by the Lord Himself. For this reason the ordination of women is not possible.

We need to understand that Christians believe God to be the essence of divine omnipotence. To put it crudely, He doesn’t make mistakes. When He became Incarnate as a human being, He did so at a precise and exact moment in human history, which has been planned from all eternity. From the beginning, God had chosen that there would be a Jewish people, among whom His divine Son would be born. Their own priestly traditions would form part of the background and culture which would help them — and others — to see and know Him. Every detail about the Incarnation was known in the mind of God. He was born into the fullness of time.

He didn’t say: “Oops, sorry — I made a terrible mistake! I should have been born into the latter half of the twentieth century, so as to have benefited from the We are Church movement in Germany, or the feminist workshop sessions of America, or the Equal Opportunities legislation in Britain.” On the contrary, He was and remains omnipotent. He knew exactly what He was doing.

It is worth pointing out that, in choosing His apostles, Christ was not awarding them the priesthood as a reward for good behavior: courage, intelligence, or skill. On the contrary. One — the rock on which the Church was to be founded — denied Him, another doubted His Resurrection, and one even betrayed Him. The priesthood is not a badge of good-conduct (although, like eleven out of the first twelve, millions of Christ’s priests down the centuries have led heroic and noble lives). Rather, just as bread and wine are the essential “matter” of the Eucharist, so are men the “matter” of the priesthood.

If we wish to explore fully this question of the Church and the priesthood, we can start with Christ’s actions when on earth. But in a sense we must go further back to see the covenant bond that was established right at the beginning, and the male/female imagery and nuptial meaning that goes right through salvation history.

At every Catholic wedding you will hear the beautiful, scriptural, and profound statement that the relationship of a bridegroom and his bride is like that of Christ and His Church. Of course, we are mostly not listening. We are looking at the bridesmaids and reflecting that they look charming in blue, or admiring the graceful way in which the bride has managed her train, and soon we’ll be enjoying the cake and the confetti and the champagne.

But the words nevertheless convey a profound truth. Notice the order of things. Christ and His Church came first. They were an idea in the mind of God from the very beginning. And we, as human beings, when we unite together and marry, are an image of the ultimate Bridegroom and Bride.

Catholics are used to this imagery. The Church is often described as being the Bride of Christ. We also speak of her as being our Holy Mother Church. She is indeed a Bride who has become a mother — and we are all her children, the fruit of that union she has with Christ. Perhaps because we are so used to this notion, we do not think about it very deeply. But it is all part of the nuptial imagery that goes all through Scripture and explains much to us.

Christ began His public ministry at a wedding. Perhaps many of us think this is not very important. We are intrigued by the story of water turning into wine, but we think it could have been a birthday party or just a local harvest supper. But no — the wedding is a central part of the event. It was a genuine wedding. We don’t know the names of the young couple getting married, but they had invited Jesus and Mary, and it was evidently a happy and important occasion with food and drink and plenty of guests. But it was more. The whole story was a great significance. When Mary told Jesus that the wine was running out, He answered, “My time is not yet come.” Whenever Christ mentions His “time,” He means His passion and death. Already, we can hear the drumbeats of that event in the distance. And Mary told the waiting servants, “Do whatever He tells you.” That word “do” also will be heard again, when Christ’s time indeed has come. At Cana, they do as He tells them, and water is turned into wine. At the Last Supper, once again there is a commandment to “do,” and this commandment also has been obeyed down the centuries, with another transformation — wine into Christ’s own blood. The nuptial message from Cana is not an optional extra; it is central to the event. Pope John Paul II echoes this link between Cana and Calvary when he speaks of the “nuptial meaning” in the Eucharist.

We see this male/female imagery going right through our redemption history. It is at the heart of Christ’s being born among us as a man. When He founded His Church, it was with the love of a bridegroom for a bride, and when He gave us the Eucharist, it was as a nuptial banquet. This nuptial imagery was completed on Calvary. We are speaking here of holy things at the very heart of our faith. Paul speaks of this as being “a great mystery.” It gives a meaning — and a great dignity — to the human reality of male and female. It is in this context that we can see not only the significance of a male priesthood, but also the importance and beauty that the Church attaches to purity, to fidelity in marriage, and to the fruitfulness of married love.

There is an important sense in which the current debate about the ordination of women, even if it is sometimes couched in terms which Catholics find offensive, is going to be useful in the development of our understanding these things. Invariably, in the history of the Church, it is only when a doctrine is seriously challenged that its truth is proclaimed in greater fullness. Only when a heresy arises does it become necessary to proclaim truth to end the heresy.

Thus we will not find the word “Trinity” in the New Testament. Yet Catholics and most Protestants unite in professing that there are three Persons in one God and that God the Son walked this earth and was present among us and told us that God the Holy Spirit would descend upon His Church. It was only when the Arian heresy arose, effectively denying Christ’s divinity, that it became necessary to defend and explain the Trinity in authoritative and definitive terms. The Council of Nicæa gave us the Nicene Creed, which we say Sunday by Sunday at Mass, proclaiming Christ’s divinity in unmistakable terms: “God from God, light from light, true God from true God.”

Tree of the knowledge of good and evil

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Tree of Knowledge, painting by Lucas Cranach the Elder

THE Book of Genesis, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil or the tree of knowledge(occasionally, the tree of conscience

Hebrew:עֵץ הַדַּעַת טוֹב וָרָעEtz haDaat tov V'ra) was a tree in the middle of the Garden of Eden. (Genesis 2:9). God directly forbade Adam (Eve having not yet been created) to eat the fruit of this tree. A serpent tempted Eve, who was aware of the prohibition against eating the forbidden fruit of the tree of knowledge (Genesis 3:1-6). The serpent had suggested to Eve that eating the fruit would bestow wisdom upon them. Eve and then Adam ate the forbidden fruit, and they became aware of their nakedness (Genesis 3:6-7). After discovering their disobedience, God banished the couple from the garden in order to deny them access to the Tree of Life, which would have bestowed immortality onto them. God cursed both the snake and the ground, obliging Adam to survive through agriculture "by the sweat of his brow." 

He told the woman that her childbirth pains would be greatly increased and that the man would rule over her. God set guards (Cherubim) at the east side of the garden to protect the way to the tree of life from Adam, Eve, and their descendants. (Genesis 3:14-24)


The Holy Bible: King James Version. 2000.

The First Book of Moses, Called

Man's Disobedience

1 Now the serpent Rev. 12.9 ; 20.2 was more subtile than any beast of the field which the LORDGod had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:
3 but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:
5 for God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.
7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.
8 ¶ And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden.
9 And the LORD God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?
10 And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.
11 And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?
12 And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.
13 And the LORD God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, 2 Cor. 11.3 and I did eat.
14 ¶ And the LORD God said unto the serpent,
Because thou hast done this,
thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field;
upon thy belly shalt thou go,
and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life:
15 and I will put enmity between thee and the woman,
and between thy seed and her seed;
it shall bruise thy head,
and thou shalt bruise his heel.
16 Unto the woman he said,
I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception;
in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children;
and thy desire shall be to thy husband,
and he shall rule over thee.
17 And unto Adam he said,
Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife,
and hast eaten of the tree,
of which I commanded thee, saying,
Thou shalt not eat of it:
cursed is the ground for thy sake;
in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;
18 thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; Heb. 6.8 
and thou shalt eat the herb of the field:
19 in the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread,
till thou return unto the ground;
for out of it wast thou taken:
for dust thou art,and unto dust shalt thou return.

20 ¶ And Adam called his wife's name Eve; 3 because she was the mother of all living.
21 Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.
22 ¶ And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, Rev. 22.14 and eat, and live for ever:
23 therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken.
24 So he drove out the man: and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden cherubim, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.



"The number of muslims in Canada and around the world will rise substantially over the next 20 years, It is expected to increase by 35 percent, rising to 2.2 billion by 2030 and increasing at about twice the rate of the non-muslim population.  If the current trends continue, Muslims will make up 26.4 percent of the world's total projected population of 8.3 billion in 2030, up from 23.4 percent of the estimated 2010 world population of 6.9 billion.  By 2030, Pakistan with 256.1 milion people will likely surpass Indonesia as the country with the single largest Muslim population. In Europe, the number of Muslims is projected to exceed 58 million by 2030, up from 44.1 million in 2010.  The biggest increases will likely occur in France, Germany, and the Netherlands.  In Canada, Muslims are expected to make 6.6 percent of the total population in 2030, up from 2.8 percent today.  In the United States, the Muslim share of the population will rise to 1.7 percent in 2030 from 0.8 per cent in 2010.  The sudden increase is partly explained by a higher fertility rate among Muslim Canadians, and the large percentage who are approaching their child-bearing years.  Median age in Canada was 28, compared to 37 for the general population. However, many countries with a majority Muslim population are aging rapidly. Hence the growth worldwide of the Muslim population is noticeably slowing" Globe and Mail, January 27, 2011

10 countries with the largest number of Muslims:   Indonesia, India, Bangladesh, Aghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Turkey, Egypt, Nigeria, Algeria, Morocco



The term Mongoloid (also Mongolic[1]) is a word used to describe people of East Asian and North Asian origin. Its use originated from a variation of the word Mongol, a people who are considered one of its main proto-populations.

Major Mongloid Aisan populations:

BulletSoutheast Asian

  Mongoloid race

Carleton S. Coon in his 1939 The Races of Europe classified the populations of Central and North Asia as Caucasian rather than Mongoloid).

The three great races according to Meyers Konversationslexikon of 1885-90. The subtypes of the Mongoloid race are shown in yellow and orange tones, those of the Europid race in light and medium grayish spring green-cyan tones and those of the Negroid race in browntones. Dravidians and Sinhalese are in olive green and their classification is described as uncertain. The Mongoloid race sees the widest geographic distribution, including all of theAmericasNorth AsiaEast Asia and Southeast Asia, the entire inhabited Arctic.


Bhavan identifies Northeast India Mongoloids to be a subrace called the "Paleo-Mongoloid", being the "dominant element in the tribes living in Assam and the Indo-Burmese frontiers... SikkimMizoramBhutanNepalBangladesh... [and] Tibetan mongoloids".[15]

In 1900, Joseph Deniker said, the "Mongol race admits two varieties or subraces: Tunguse or Northern Mongolian... and Southern Mongolian".[5] The people of East Asia are called "Northern Mongoloids".[16] Archaeologist Peter Bellwood claims that the "vast majority" of people in Southeast Asia, the region he calls the "clinal Mongoloid-Australoid zone", are "Southern Mongoloids" but have a "high degree" of Australoid admixture.[17] Ainus are considered Southern Mongoloids even though they live in East Asia.[16] Sinodonty and Sundadonty are dentition patterns that correspond to the Northern Mongoloid vs. Southern Mongoloid distinction.

By the mid-20th century, what were called the subraces of the Mongolian race were usually classified by language groups: The Uralic race, the Altaic race, the Sino-Tibetan race, the Tai race, the Austroasiatic race, the Malayan race (those people now called Austronesians), the Paleosiberian race, the Eskimo race, and the American Indian race.

Religious law

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

In some religionslaw can be thought of as the ordering principle of reality

knowledge as revealed by a God defining and governing all human affairs. 

Law, in the religious sense, also includes codes of ethics and morality which 

are upheld and required by the God. Examples include customary

 Halakha (Jewish law) and Hindu law, and to an extent, Sharia (Islamic law)

 and Canon law (Christian law).[1]

Sharia and Canon law differ from other religious laws in that Canon law is the 

codification of CatholicAnglican and Orthodox law (like in a civil law tradition),

 while Sharia law derives many of its laws from juristic precedent and reasoning

 by analogy (like in a common law tradition).



Fiqh classifies behavior into the following types or grades

fard (obligatory), mustahabb(recommended), mubah (neutral), makruh (discouraged), and haraam (forbidden). Every human action belongs in one of these five categories.

Actions in the fard category are those required of all Muslims. They include the five daily prayers, fasting, articles of faith, obligatory charity, and the hajj pilgrimage to Mecca.
The mustahabb category includes proper behavior in matters such as marriage, funeral rites and family life. As such, it covers many of the same areas as civil law in the West. Sharia courts attempt to reconcile parties to disputes in this area using the recommended behavior as their guide. A person whose behavior is not mustahabb can be ruled against by the judge.
All behavior which is neither discouraged nor recommended, neither forbidden nor required is of the Mubah; it is permissible.
Makruh behavior, while it is not sinful of itself, is considered undesirable among Muslims. It may also make a Muslim liable to criminal penalties under certain circumstances.
Haraam behavior is explicitly forbidden. It is both sinful and criminal. It includes all actions expressly forbidden in both the Old Testament and the Qur'an. Violating any of the Ten Commandments is considered haraam. Certain Muslim dietary and clothing restrictions also fall into this category.

The recommended, permissible and discouraged categories are drawn largely from accounts of the life of the Islamic Prophet Muhammad. To say a behavior is sunnah is to say it is recommended as an example from the life and sayings of Muhammad. These categories form the basis for proper behavior in matters such as courtesy and manners, interpersonal relations, generosity, personal habits and hygiene.

The Christian Bible

The Bible contains many other examples in which God provided for His will to be accomplished.

Wicked people were destroyed by flood, yet Noah saved.

Joseph, deserted as a lad in a foreign land, became governor to save Abraham's descendants.

Moses led Israel from Egyptian slavery to Canaan.

Likewise, God promises to provide for our needs today so we can do His will.

Like Mordecai and Esther, we may face much hindrance and opposition. God has not promised to remove all our problems. He has promised to provide everything we need to be faithful and receive eternal life, IF we are determined to serve Him faithfully at all costs.

* Do you face hardship, temptation, and discouragement? Are you tempted to go back to the world and give up serving God? God will provide a way of escape

 (1 Cor. 10:13).

* Do you sorrow because of poor health, the death of a loved one, or mistreatment by others? God does not promise to remove the problem, but He promises peace and strength to endure (Phil. 4:6,7).

* Are you burdened by the guilt of sin and fear of eternal torment? God is able to save to the uttermost and give the hope of eternal life (Heb. 7:25).







Why does the mom hamster eat her babies?

They can eat their babies for several reasons. 

1. They feel threatened and the only way they know to survive is to eat the babies. When I bred hamsters I would throw a little dish towel over half of the cage so that they had their area of privacy. Do not handle them too much ... they will feel threatened and eat their babies.
2. They can feel threatened by several different ways 
a. If the nest is disturbed they will feel threatened. If it is a first litter they may move the babies from one corner to another for the first couple of days .. this is normal. Do not attempt to clean the cage. at this point.
b. If they feel they do not have a hiding place they will feel threatened then eat their young.
C. If the male is left in there he will eat the young .. to eliminate competition for food
D. IF the mothers diet is inadequate she will eat the young to make milk for some of the stronger ones.




It appears the reasons are similar to the Hamster's



(Aired Feb 28, 2011)


Star Trek's Beautiful Alien Women

Star Trek Video: Women of the Mirror Universe


Star Trek -  Orion Slave Girls Dance


Percy Sledge- When a Man Loves A Woman


Every Breath You Take - Sting & The Police


StarTrek: Enterprise - Only Time







Harj Gill Jan 23, 2010

Bible, King James Version (KJV)

2 Corinthians


[1] This is the third time I am coming to you. In the mouth of two or three witnesses shall every word be established.

[2] I told you before, and foretell you, as if I were present, the second time; and being absent now I write to them which heretofore have sinned, and to all other, that, if I come again, I will not spare:

[3] Since ye seek a proof of Christ speaking in me, which to you-ward is not weak, but is mighty in you.

[4] For though he was crucified through weakness, yet he liveth by the power of God. For we also are weak in him, but we shall live with him by the power of God toward you.

[5] Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?

[6] But I trust that ye shall know that we are not reprobates.

[7] Now I pray to God that ye do no evil; not that we should appear approved, but that ye should do that which is honest, though we be as reprobates.

[8] For we can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth.

[9] For we are glad, when we are weak, and ye are strong: and this also we wish, even your perfection.

[10] Therefore I write these things being absent, lest being present I should use sharpness, according to the power which the Lord hath given me to edification, and not to destruction.

[11] Finally, brethren, farewell. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you.

[12] Greet one another with an holy kiss.

[13] All the saints salute you.

[14] The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen.


 Picture can be obtained from :,whiteeyes7.jpg/


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