What is Freemasonry ?

Find out the facts here.

Surrey Freemasons Boaz Pillar
Surrey Freemasons Jachin Pillar


Freemasonry is one of the world’s oldest and largest non-religious, non-political, fraternal and charitable organisations. It teaches self-knowledge through participation in a progression of ceremonies. Members are expected to be of high moral standing and are encouraged to speak openly about Freemasonry. The following information is intended to explain Freemasonry as it is practised under the United Grand Lodge of England, which administers Lodges of Freemasons in England and Wales and in many places overseas.

Freemasonry is a society of men concerned with moral and spiritual values. Its members are taught its principles (moral lessons and self-knowledge) by a series of ritual dramas – a progression of allegorical two-part plays which are learnt by heart and performed within each Lodge – which follow ancient forms, and use stonemasons’ customs and tools as allegorical guides.

Freemasonry instils in its members a moral and ethical approach to life: its values are based on integrity, kindness, honesty and fairness. Members are urged to regard the interests of the family as paramount but, importantly, Freemasonry also teaches concern for people, care for the less fortunate and help for those in need.

The Video below will give you a greater insight.



Myths & Legends

Modern Freemasonry has been around since 1717. The first concocted untruths about the Order appeared in print at almost the same time. The United States was consumed by anti-Masonic hysteria in the late 1820s, and Europe has made Mason-bashing a popular sport for two centuries, often tying it to anti-Semitic propaganda. The Internet has only served to resurrect these myths, as they get dragged out and repeated all over again. Clearly it is going to take a lot of work and time to debunk 300 years of misinformation but it is a challenge that has been taken up. 

Freemasonry as a body is more open now than probably ever before, really the only things kept private now are the passwords and tokens used to distinguish brethren and these are only used in Lodge. 

The Right Worshipful Provincial Grand Master of Devonshire gave this frank interview to aid in this process of debunking the nonsence.

A Letter from the wife of a Freemason

"So what did I expect when, many years ago, my husband took the first steps into the mysterious world of Freemasonry?
My knowledge of Freemasonry at that time was pretty sketchy and, I'm ashamed to admit, I didn't take it seriously at all. My jibes of "Off to join the rolled-up trouser leg brigade?" were met with extreme disdain.
I didn't mind him going out; it was a novelty to be in charge of the remote control. After all – grown men bearing the breasts, secret ceremonies – surely this was the stuff of childhood boys' games?
Meeting other Masons and their wives for the first time was very daunting. "What is expected of me?" I asked. "Just be yourself, but don't mention trouser legs.
On entering the function room on the first occasion, I looked round and it seemed everyone knew everyone else. There appeared to be groups all engaged in confident,  chatter. However, introductions were made and I soon became enfolded into a welcoming circle of warm, interesting people from every walk of life. After many years that circle has grown and now it is I that welcomes new people. There is a motto which is printed on Ladies' Night menus "There are no strangers here, only friends you have yet to meet" which is very apt for Freemasonry.
Over the years I have learned that there is a great deal more to Freemasonry than I had thought. I had no concept of the extent of the extreme generosity of Masons. But then, how many people are aware just how huge givers the Freemasons are to charity, and its not just to their own kind. Masons and their families give hundreds of thousands of pounds to deserving causes, here, and worldwide.
I am now full of admiration for Freemasons, both for what they stand for and what they achieve. And, okay, if they have to roll-up a trouser leg, well, so be it – they have my utmost respect and support."