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Grand Lodge A.F. & A.M. of Canada in the Province of Ontario

UNIVERSE LODGE No.705 G.R.C.

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FREEMASONRY - A RELIGION?


Is freemasonry a religion? Not in the traditional sense. It does, however, require all brethren to profess a faith in a religion believing in a personal creator God or Supreme Being. It also requires that each brother be true to and practice his chosen faith and to not be a persecutor, slanderer or reviler of any religion. To be admitted into Freemasonry, a candidate must profess that he believes in the existence of a Supreme Being, that he believes that that Supreme Being will punish vice and reward virtue and that he believes that that Supreme Being has revealed his will to man. Many references using several names are made to that personal creator God or Supreme Being during the ritual of lodge meetings. Apart from this, the brethren promise to abstain from every topic of religious or political discussion while in the lodge.

V.S.L.

Brethren in Canada know the Old Testament of the Holy Bible as the Volume of the Sacred Law of both Christian and Jewish brethren, but brethren of other faiths use different books. The term V.S.L. does not, therefore, only refer to the Holy Bible. It is becoming common for Lodges in England, Scotland and many other parts of the world to place several Vs.S.L. on the Lodge altar, among which a few are:

  • 1. The Holy Bible, the Sacred Text or Holy Book of the Christians.
  • 2. The Torah, the Sacred Text or Holy Book of the Jews. (Also the Old Testament of the Holy Bible.)
  • 3. The Glorious Qur'an, the Sacred Text or Holy Book of the Moslems. (Also the Ahadith).
  • 4. The Bhagavad-Gita, the Sacred Text or Holy Book of the Hindus. (Also the Vedas comprised of the Samhita, Brahmana, Aranyaka and Upanishat, as well as the Mahabharata and the Ramayana.)
  • 5. The Guru Granth Sahib, the Sacred Text or Holy Book of the Sikhs.
  • 6. The Zend Avesta, the Sacred Text or Holy Book of the Zoroastrians and Parsis. (Also the Khordeh Avesta and Pahlavi Texts.)
  • 7. The Tripitaka, the Sacred Text or Holy Book of the Mahayana school of Buddhism found in China, Japan, Korea and Vietnam who do believe in a personal creator God or Supreme Being. (The Hinyana or Theravada school of Buddhism found in Burma, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Laos, Cambodia and Myanmar and in parts of Indonesia, Vietnam and Malaysia do not believe in a personal creator God or Supreme Being. The same applies to the Vajrayana school of Buddhism found in Himalayan countries Tibet, Nepal, Sikkim, Bhutan and also Mongolia.) There is no one single holy scripture of Buddhism but a great many and of great length. The Tripitaka alone is the size of 70 Bibles.
  • 8. The Teachings of Mahavira, the Sacred Text or Holy Book of the Jains.
Of course, there are many other sacred and semi-sacred books relating to each of these religions which cannot be listed here, especially of the eastern religions, of which only the most essential and universally accepted are shown here for simplicity.

As Canada and especially the GTA of Ontario is becoming a multicultural mosaic, it would appear appropriate that to both exemplify the universality of Freemasonry and to show due respect to religions of all the brethren, all appropriate Vs.S.L. should be placed on the Lodge altar when brethren of respective faiths are present in Lodge. As to where each of these Vs.S.L. should be opened at, the respective brethren will know.

FOR A BRIEF INTRODUCTION TO THESE RELIGIONS   click here


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thank you for your interest and patience ~ htm, stp, htma
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Free Masonry Canada Toronto East District Universe Lodge 705 Shriners York Scottish Rites Templars Demolay Rainbow Girls Job's Daughters Eastern Star