Friday, May 23, 2014

The Three Ruffians: A Prophetic View of the Grand Master’s Annual Address of 1924

Written by Rev. John L. Hairston, Editor
The Quill and The Sword

What is “Prophetic”?
The term, “Prophetic”, commonly alludes to the FORE-TELLING of future events; there is an added dimension of the interpretation of the past to provide solutions for the present circumstances. The Great Light of the Volume of Sacred Law provides the framework to explain this “gift” of interpreting history to expose the ailments of the present circumstances, and place the present in its real context that will initiate the process of healing. According to 1 Corinthians 12:8, this prophetic gift is called the Word of Wisdom and Knowledge and differs from the gift of prophecy in that it doesn’t entail the foretelling of the future, but rather, interpreting the past and present to derive healing and CHANGE. As a Commissioned and Ordained Minister, a prophetic vessel for the Great Architect of the Universe, a historian and a disciple of the Philosophy of Freemasonry, I offer a Prophetic view of an excerpt from The Grand Master’s Annual Address of 1924; in hopes that those who have eyes to see will see, and those who have ears to hear will hear.

Grand Master’s Annual Address 1924 (M.W. C. W. Davis, GM)
“…But it is not given to every man to be eloquent in speech or rhetorical in rendition, and with full knowledge of my own shortcomings, I shall confine myself to at least two of those liberal arts: Grammar, because I intend to speak correctly and logicly, because that is a direct inquiry into Truth. I shall make no allusions to the mistakes of the head as being contrary to the intentions of the heart. I appreciate too well the God-given attribute which I possess, in common with all mankind, to express myself according to the dictates of my own conscience
“Should I fail to make mention of all the working tools of our profession, I shall endeavor to apply them. I shall not make use of the Tyler’s implement however, only as a symbol of Truth, which cuts like a two-edged sword. I bring you the truth and the “truth shall make you free.
“One year ago I was elected as your Grand Master, under circumstances rather peculiar, in a Grand Lodge of Masons. Had I aspired for the honor of that great and dignified office, and the brethren seemed willing to accord me that honor in return for long and meritorious service, I would have been happy in the thought that our Masonry was responsive to its sublime teachings in that everything must come by merit. But in this instance I had done the Grand Lodge little or no service, and I had no aspiration for office. I was selected to serve because a dire emergency existed. As one brother expressed it, I was used to “let the bars down.” How this inelegant figure of speech found its way into Masonry, I cannot say, but its application seems plain.
“These so-called “bars” represent the sum total of achievement of this Grand Lodge from the time when its founders allowed themselves to be tempted by the lure of ambition for power and place. These Masons of an earlier day, inspired by all the lofty ideals of which masonry boasts, and being desirous of propagating our Art on the Pacific Coast, and, like Prince Hall, “chaffing under the fetters” of distant Sovereign Grand Lodges, which placed certain limitations upon their endeavors, made a determined stride for freedom and sovereign rights by organizing and perfecting their own vineyard, whereby they might sow the seeds of masonry and reap the harvest of their Masonic labor unhindered by any restriction save that imposed by the Constitutions and Landmarks of the Fraternity.
“All went well until the question of leadership came up for consideration. It was there that the first ruffian “Ambition”, appeared to block the way of honest endeavor, followed closely by a second “Competition”, and by the union of these two, one more deadly and dangerous than the rest was born, “Politics”, and then and there a blow was struck at our embryo organization from which it has never recovered.
“Torn and divided by this evil thing which had crept among them, it was five years before there was any hope of union. In the meantime this lusty child Politics had assumed enormous proportions, guided and controlled by ambitious men who had acquired considerable skill in its manipulations. It was not long before a machine was built up for the purpose of holding and maintaining power and place and control; and Masonry was divided into two classes: a ruling class and a suffering class; and Aristocracy and a Democracy.
“Thus were the “Bars” raised up against every moral progress, and we find ourselves after 20 years of existence, and at the close of 6 years of successive elections to office, made possible only by the power of this political machine, on the brink of disruption, the Craft divided, hate taking the place of love; confusion and disorder; the very traditional tragedy of the Temple being enacted in our midst.
“The crucial time had arrived, the long-suffering masses had at last awakened to the fact that Masonry knows no rulers; that Masonry is ruled by Law alone. It is recorded that Moses led the children of Israel out of Egypt, he did not drive them out. The ruler keeps his subjects in ignorance lest they discover their freedom. He demands loyalty, a thing which can only be bought with love. The stupid devotion of a few followers is his only dependence for safety. Masonry has no time for such wasted devotion.
“Our bounden duty lies only in one direction, and that is fidelity to the Order and its sublime principles and not to any man’s personal ambitions.
“In sailing in the Corrupt Sea of Politics, the shoals, reefs, and storms which are ever prevalent in these dangerous waters, has left its tell-tale marks on the ship of Masonry of this jurisdiction.”
The Prophetic Perspective
Traditionally, the “three ruffians” have alluded to intolerance, ignorance and tyranny, but Grand Master C. W. Davis alluded them to Ambition, Competition and Politics. There is nothing wrong with Ambition, Competition or Politics if they are applied in their MORAL and PROPER context; when these harmless principles fall into the hearts and minds of those who have not been truly reformed by the sublime principles of Freemasonry, we find them used as weapons of disharmony and discord; a cancer to any Order or organization.
As previously defined in the opening paragraph of this article, the Prophetic is the gift or ability to divine from the past and present Wisdom and Knowledge vital to the healing and change of something or someone. As we have witnessed time again in the annals of history and scripture that when a God-ordained entity falls from the purpose for which it was intended, signs and words of prophetic warning comes as a landmark by which we may return to the path and course of destiny. There is no matter the level of justification of the culprits of the disharmony, no matter in whether the general audience approves or believes the message provided; the message is placed in the hearing of the people and the word is full of purpose that will not be denied or hindered. There is only acceptance and change/reform, or disregard and consequence.
The three “ruffians” of Ambition, Competition and Politics have never truly been apprehended in the Jurisdictions, they have only been cloaked in the hearts for a time until they deem it most profitable for their reappearance. They hide in the hearts of so-called masons who carry the burning embers of past feuds and old “customs” that have never truly been extinguished in them; they then ignite the same in other Brethren, and whisper the wind of corruption that the flames may catch fire and spread in hopes of accomplishing their personal agendas.
How can we identify the “three ruffians” of Ambition, Competition and Politics? By guide of the Volume of Sacred Law, the book of Proverbs, chapter 6, verses 16-19:
The three ruffians of Ambition, Competition and Politics operate and function most effectively in the environment created by the 7 abominations. These 7 abominations are the instruments that murder and maim the conduct and character of brothers in pursuit of vain ambitions, fueled by competition and politics. These ruffians attempt to find rest in the hearing and hearts of the unsuspecting, cloaked as whispered “words of counsel” and “wisdom of instruction”; they desire dark corners, inner circles and any means of communication to work their witchcraft; the sources of this discord never seeks direct confrontation with the object of their works, but choose to operate in the darkness, out of sight of those who carry the light of good judgment; if the substance of their actions are placed in the scale of the Master’s charge and other obligations of Freemasonry, such as, “reminding their brother of his faults in friendliest of manner” or “to defend his character”, we will find a blatant violation of these instructions; which when questioned as to the gross violation and disregard for our tenet principles for more suitable Masonic conduct, you then become the object of their works as well.
In the Legend, the three culprits are apprehended at the command of the representation of DIVINE WISDOM. It is divine wisdom that comes from the Supreme Architect of the Universe, who has stated that we operate in decency and IN ORDER. Where we find the flagrant operation of the three ruffians, we can find an organization that has become disconnected from its DIVINE SOURCE, abandoning its true purpose to become more infested with the cancer of vain AMBITIONS, trivial COMPETITIONS, and dirty POLITICS.

As we make way into another Annual Grand Communication, let us reassess whether we operate in the spirit of the three ruffians of vain ambitions, trivial competitions and dirty politics, or are we moving in the godly course of Brotherly love, Relief and TRUTH. We are accountable for decisions and conduct, even if the consequence is not immediate; think not that the arm of the Supreme Judge of all Souls has weakened. The futile whispers of Ambition, Competition and Politics cannot hinder or obstruct the course of Prophetic destiny, those whispers and subsequent operations serve only to fall upon the heads of the sources of such works. 

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Response to Fahim A. El-The Conclusion

In the name of Masonic Education, I continue this discussion with Brother Fahim A. Knight El.
My response will be in red.

Bro. Fahim's response to mine can be found here:
Bro Fahim's Response

Brother Fahim began his response:
Peace: Brother Hairston, you finally admitted openly that no one gave the United Grand Lodge of England (UGLE) a charter to function and operate as an independent and sovereign body of Masons; thus, they like all other self-determining people in history declared themselves the right to invest in the ancient and modern forms of Freemasonry by implementing and establishing their own Masonic edit and therefore laying the foundation for others to follow.

Now, Bro. Fahim, I know that the audience who follows my blog, those who know me in Masonic research circles and even those from clandestine groups whom I debate regularly will find the opening of your response amusing. You stated that I had FINALLY OPENLY ADMITTED that no one gave England a Charter. I never denied that fact at any time, in fact I have publicly stated that to clandestine groups who believe that Grand Lodges receive charters to operate, because that is a practice that is the norm among illegal masonic bodies.
Again, you show signs of one who is among the Regular lodges but your heart is clandestine. The established norm since the founding of the Grand Lodge of 1717, the merger of the rival Grand Lodges in 1813 was that no Grand Lodge would need a charter to operate. This is Freemasonry 101.
Your contention that it is perfectly legal to go out and establish a Grand Lodge at anytime is a detriment to Freemasonry and further proves that your rationale may need a bit of fine tuning.
The origins of those "grand lodges" whom you so deem them within their right to form a Grand Lodge because they just can, is spurious and they have no legitimate origin.
John G. Jones in particular started a Grand Lodge with no lodges. He just went out, one week after being expelled and incorporated a Grand Lodge. I think you are quite aware of the expulsion of John G. Jones and may be you may NOT know that he started a Grand Lodge a week AFTER the trial and had NO LODGES to start a Grand Lodge. So what gave him the right to start a Grand Lodge?
What gave IFAAM or Modern Free?
These bogus grand lodges were illegally started and have no authority whatsoever to exist, because they were either formed by illegal lodges, with illegal charters, or they were founded by expelled masons or those who had no authority to just start a Grand Lodge.
Can you name a grand lodge, that would be considered clandestine that would have the Masonic right to just form?

Secondly, can you give me the masonic precedent that would allow any group of people to form a Grand Lodge after the established custom was established on how Grand Lodges were to form? Please provide documentation and NOT OPINION. You continued:

Perhaps since no and/or 'competent Masonic Jurisdiction' issued them a Masonic Warrant, Charter or Dispensation to function in a legal Masonic capacity, then any charters and warrants that followed (meaning those issued by the UGLE) would be considered irregular.

Bro. Fahim, I think it may be time to end these discussion if you can't begin to formulate better conclusions than these, because we are beginning to go in circles. There was no precedent on how Grand Lodges were to form prior to the formation of the Grand Lodge of England. This means the precedent was set by there actions. They didn't need to have a Competent Masonic Jurisdiction, because they became the FIRST GRAND LODGE. Prior to that formation, lodges were private lodges and operate autonomous from each other, there was NO CENTRAL AUTHORITY. Any group of masons could assemble and confer the degrees and form Lodges. Although a Grand Master was existent he had no Chartering authority, as there was no CENTRAL BODY in existence to issue such charter or dispensation.
In 1717, one of the primary reasons for the formation of a Grand Lodge was to provide a CENTRAL AUTHORITY that would regulate the the formation of private lodges and how the degrees were conferred. This Body was to give structure to a chaotic system. I think rather than join Freemasonry to be nosy, it would be wise to actually research the history and get an understanding of the environment that led up to the formation of the Grand Lodge of England. It would provide an insight to the rationale of a Central Body.
Now, not all lodges were with the new Grand Lodge and Chartering authority, but the Grand Lodge of England wasn't built to control all of Masonry, just regulate how Freemasonry would operate between the four lodges and other lodges that would be formed under them, they exerted no control over the lodges outside the four.
Later, other lodges that were existing in the UK saw the benefits of a CENTRAL BODY and came under the structure of the Grand Lodge of England. there were rivals to the Grand Lodge of England up until 1813, and therefore all contentions became uniformity and harmony in the Masonic world.

So, your logic that all charters emanating from the Grand Lodge of England could be deemed irregular is weak and unsubstantial. There was no Chartering Authority or Central Body to claim them antagonistic to. They were the FIRST CENTRAL BODY and Chartering Authority that was purely Speculative, which was a distinction from the private lodges that were predominately OPERATIVE. You have to actually do the homework Brother. You are just making statements for the sake of argument and trying to keep the debate going. You continued:

Now, I think that you are smart enough to read between the lines. But I also know that our acceptance of this illegal duplicity is rooted in a much deeper psychosis, which is mis-eduction and self-hatred--this always allows us to give Europeans and their culture a free pass.

Bro. Fahim, you sound disgruntled. I don't believe that the acceptance of the standards of regularity is based on mis-education and self-hatred, it is based on acceptance of the system of freemasonry as it was established. You are the type who will paint a white lie black and then call it truth. What was done during the time of slavery is not forgotten nor is it just swept under the rug. There are reparation movements, civil and national rights movements that are fighting on those fronts. There are many grass roots organizations that are out in the community voicing these issues. The thing you can't seem to grasp is that Freemasonry isn't a CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT, IT ISN'T POLITICAL. Freemasonry isn't the forum nor platform to deal with those issues. You are asking Freemasonry to become other than what it was formed to be. We will not allow Masonic crimes to be accepted just because they were committed by Black people. Black Nationalism isn't a philosophy that asked for the acceptance of criminal and subversive conduct in the name of a "black agenda".
You are trying to paint all white masons as racist and a danger to black masons, and this is just ridiculous and shows that you you're self are a racist hiding in the ranks of Freemasonry. You want Prince Hall mason to provide a pass to John G. Jones, his masonic crimes, and the after effects of those crimes based solely that he and those who follow him are black?! That is a racist perspective. You continued:

So No other Masonic entity had the right to do exactly what the United Grand Lodge of England did, if you understand what deductive reasoning is either you would objectively conclude that England had every right to establish itself as a 'competent Masonic' jurisdiction or what they set-up by mere reasoning is illegal or legal in which affords others this same Masonic right and privilege.

Bro. Fahim, who said that no other masonic entity couldn't do what the Grand Lodge of England did?
Where are you coming up with these conclusions?
Scotland, France, Ireland, India, and the various Grand Lodges of America did so. Here is the MAJOR DIFFERENCE, they did so by legitimate means and with the framework of the established usages and customs of the day. The clandestine lodges, either have no legally chartered lodges, expelled masons, charters for Grand Lodges, grand lodges formed by "Supreme Councils", etc.
Grand Lodges can form in the same manner as the Grand Lodge of England, just NOT OUTSIDE THE ESTABLISHED USAGES AND CUSTOMS.
The deduction of why those four old lodges decided to form a Central Body and put structure into the system is more than logical, it saved Freemasonry. If Freemasonry was practiced the way that led up to the formation of the first Grand Lodge, you would not even recognize it today; it would be a chaotic stew of every man is his own Grand Master, no harmony, no uniformity, no regulation. But I guess that flawed concepts of life flourish in chaos, because it would appear normal. You continued:

But not only this, the UGLE would eventually impose their Masonic will the world over.

Do you even understand what you're saying here?
You are distorting the truth for the sake of trying to breathe life into a conceptual corpse.
Let me give you an example that will utterly dispel the above statement.

If the UGLE exerts control over the Masonic world, then why are their still Grand Lodges in America that don't recognize Prince Hall Grand Lodges?

If the UGLE controls the Masonic world, how is it that all Grand Lodges in America have OES auxiliaries?

The UGLE doesn't control any Grand Lodges or Jurisdictions. The Grand Lodges have the option to accept the standards of regularity and apply them as they deem conducive to their jurisdiction. It is a willful and lawful acceptance of the UGLE standards. ALL GRAND LODGES ARE SOVEREIGN. You just have to accept that. You are creating a straw man argument. you continued:
No, speak for yourself, I do not practice nor follow the tenets of the UGLE or any other European Masonic body; my good brother, once I accepted the knowledge of self, it was clear that what so-called African American Masons were following was distorted and a perverted version of Masonry and I truly desired to look to the East and at least investigate the Ancient schools of thought that evolved in Ancient Kemet that predated learning and initiation long before the Caucasian exited the Hills and Caves sides of Europe.

Bro. Fahim, are you a Mason in good standing with your lodge in North Carolina? If you are then by that virtue, what you have stated above is refuted by your own actions to make sure your dues are paid so that you can remain in good standing with that UGLE styled Masonry that you're covered by. You continued:
You are literally following a baby on the planet who has only been in existing a little over 6,000 years and in your response you desire to downplay the citadel of all knowledge which is Kemet. This much has been thoroughly verified by Chelkh Anta Diop and Yosef Ben Jochannan and many of our revolutionary scholars.

Bro. Fahim, I am not following anything but the Volume of Sacred Law, The Constitution of the United States, and the Code and Constitution of my Grand Lodge. I think you are exhibiting selective reading and you are reading what you want into my statements. I am well aware of all the contributions that black people have made to World Civilization. I am well aware of the abilities of Black people. I just refuse to paint all white people devil, when I learned that a devil is ANY MAN MADE WEAK AND WICKED. And there are times when one is made weak by his own delusions and flawed concepts of life.
You have no clue as to what I see through these eyes. I know how to judge what is and what is not. I see good in ALL good people, regardless of their race. I will not live life acting as if white people are the cause of every issue in my life. I refuse to paint all white people are racist. You are wasting your masonic experience harboring ideological distortions and historical revisionist theories.
So, your above statement really has NOTHING TO DO WITH THE ORIGINAL POINT, and I dismiss it because it doesn't negate the fact that Freemasonry as you joined was formed by English lodges. You still haven't provided a citation for a Grand Lodge in Egypt prior to 1717.
Don't read something that is not there in the statement. I know there were Mystery Schools and Initiatic Schools all over Africa, but they were not the system you practice in your lodge. Nor did you have the Grand Lodge system that is practiced. I believe that there are surviving mysteries from Egypt, I just don't believe that they were communicate and practiced as we do in Freemasonry.
I believe that Freemasonry is a door that will lead you into other paths, because the paths of all converge within its halls of learning. You continued:

I do give you credit we are making some baby steps the in fact that you did acknowledge and admit that no one gave the Europeans their charter in 1717 (this is huge and this admittance deflates the premise and foundation that your argument rest).

Fahim, I think that you're bit over confident with absolutely no evident reason to be. You continue to believe that England had a Charter in 1717. You see, your attempt to be sarcastic becomes the stage the public is allowed to see just how inconsistent and lacking your understanding of Freemasonry is. Please allow me to reiterate for the third time, THERE WAS NO CHARTER FOR THE GRAND LODGE OF ENGLAND in 1717. This is how I know that you may not be attending your meetings regularly, especially not study halls. You said, no one gave Europeans their Charter and this is erroneous. England did not possess a CHARTER and they never have possessed a Charter, because Grand Lodges DO NOT OPERATE BY CHARTERS. they operate by Code and Constitution and the allegiance of the Subordinate lodges that IT CHARTERS. The Grand Lodge of England ISSUED CHARTERS, they did not HAVE ONE THEMSELVES, because Grand Lodges don't need charters.
This is a tell tell sign that a Grand Lodge is bogus, if the Grand Lodge has a Charter from some body to operate. This is a clandestine practice. Again, SUBORDINATE LODGES NEED CHARTERS TO OPERATE, NOT GRAND LODGES. So, the very fact that you continue to believe that it takes a charter to form a Grand Lodge, then your above statement backfires and become the shot in your foot. You continued:

This in my opinion, is much bigger than John G. Jones and his lodges, it really sets a legal precedents for other non-Prince Hall Masons to use their own sovereign authority and power to establish and create their own Masonic reality.

Fahim, you are so far from the true concept of Freemasonry. There is no black Masonic reality to attain, there is only ONE MASONIC REALITY, and it is inclusive of ALL RACES UNDER ONE UMBRELLA. As it stands today, Prince Hall Masons operate sovereign and Independent Grand Lodges. So the above statement is the presentation of one who has a very narrow view of Freemasonry. You are trying to see a great concept through "black lenses" and it is distorting your view of truth. You continued:
Let me set the record straight because I know the mindset of zealots; it would be a total a distortion and misnomer for anyone to suggest that Brother Knight-El, a Prince Hall Mason supports clandestine Masonry (no I am given you and others a lesson in critical thinking) and it is an outright lie for anyone to leave this conversation with that assertion.

Fahim, you are making the above statement seem like a phony disclaimer. You are definitely a support of clandestine practices as it continues to leak out of your statements. I will leave the readers to decide. You continued:
I do advocate Black Masonic unity above all else and I also believe in talk diplomacy with other non-Prince Hall jurisdictions and perhaps we could find some common ground. I think it is very much immature to tell a Masonic organization such as Ancient Free and Accepted Masonry (John G. Jones this group is over 100 years old) the only option is to come before the PHA alter and be "Healed" for some they might find this to be a reasonable option and even I might in some instances a agree with this stringent mandate, but what about those who are comfortable with being an upright man in the space which now they presently occupy. I have a lot more to say.

Fahim, the space that all JGJ groups occupy now is illegal, and just because they may feel comfortable in that space doesn't mean that we call it legal. It is not immaturity to ask someone to follow the protocol that has been established for some time now. But that is neither here nor there. I am glad that YOU THINK, because that holds no weight in the Masonic world, you have make the OPINION justified by real masonic precedent and substantial masonic documentation.
I love black people and desire their unity, but I will not compromise the stability and structure of the system just to provide a space for a "unity" that isn't based on anything stable. You have to understand, that asking them to abandon their clandestine practice is the best option and at this point their ONLY option to enjoy MASONIC UNITY.
The unity of black people doesn't need Freemasonry. But Masonic Unity does, and you can post a thousand times, but it will change nothing, and the you are not presenting a good case to those of the Prince Hall Craft while you use these types of conclusions and operate under this type of delusion. For the cause that you have not legitimately presented a good cause masonically, and that you continue to post in a circle, without any real verification or substantial reasoning. I bid you peace in your hopeless quest. We have went back and forth, and you have only continue to prove that you have no clear understanding of Freemasonry, and that you choose to deviate from the root practices of Freemasonry to maintain a flawed ideology.

WB John L. Hairston, Editor
The Quill and The Sword

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Response to Fahim A. Knight-El Part 4

Well, we finally received another response from Bro. Fahim El.

My response will be in red.

You can read his response here:
Bro. Fahim's Response

Bro. Fahim began his response:
Peace: Brother Hairston: This is the fundamental question that Brother Hairston keeps avoiding. Who gave the United Grand Lodge of England (UGLE) their charter? (please answer this question for my audience)

Bro. Fahim El, the more you respond and the deeper the conversation goes, the more it is revealed that you have not thought through the questions you pose.
Firstly, there was no Charter given to the Grand Lodge of England to form a Grand Lodge. There are too many Antiquarians, Historian, and Scholars who have written on the subject to list as references, but any book on the history of Freemasonry, will render the same answer. No one gave the Grand Lodge of England a Charter to form a Grand Lodge.
Grand Lodges do not receive Charters to exist, only subordinate lodges. The Grand Lodge that you are member of does not exist by virtue of a Charter, but a Convention and Regular Constitution. Grand Lodes are vested by the authority of a Convention and their Constitution, not a Charter.
With that being stated, there is no evidence of a Speculative Grand Lodge prior to 1717. Let's refer to some Texts:

in all general meetings of the craft, and to instruct
his representatives, is a twelfth Landmark.f Formerly,
these general meetings, which were usually

held once a year, were called ' General Assemblies,' and all the fraternity, even to the youngest Entered
Apprentice, were permitted to be present. Now
they are called " Grand Lodges/
7 and only the Masters
and Wardens of the Subordinate Lodges are
summoned. But this is simply as the representatives
of their members. Originally, each Mason
represented himself ; now he is represented by his
officers. This was a concession granted by the fraternity
about 1717, and of course does not affect the
integrity of the Landmark, for the principle of
representation is still preserved. The concession
was only made for purposes of convenience.*
[A Textbook of Masonic Jurisprudence-Albert Mackey (1869)]

The above is the 12th Landmark explained by Albert Mackey, who explains that prior to 1717, there were the General Assemblies which met. In 1717, 4 Old Lodges in London formed a GRAND LODGE, and this was the first GRAND LODGE of Speculative Freemasonry.
I know that you will go to the Grand Lodge of Luxor, and state that it predates 1717, but I will then challenge you to produce a document from Luxor at that time that would prove that they were an organized Grand Lodge of Speculative Freemasonry.
There is ample documentation that will show the existence of a Grand Assembly presided by a Grand Master, and the development of said assembly of Masons into the Speculative Grand Lodge system you practice today.
So, by virtue of the law of FIRST and BEING ORIGINAL in this case, the authority to create a CONSTITUTION and ORGANIZE a Grand Lodge was well within their Masonic right. Now, after said Constitution was created, Lodges then existing had a choice to go under said organization, and they all did, except a few, and later ALL DID. So, the forms and customs practiced in America, whether practiced by white or black masons derive their origins from the 1717 system that was formed.
Now, if you don't believe or question the authority of Grand Lodge of 1717, which is the system you practice as a Prince Hall member, then why remain in the ranks of a subordinate lodge that derived its authority from a Grand Lodge, that is established according to the rules and traditions derived from the Grand Lodge of England and its modes of regularity?
If you created an organization from the ground up, and created a set of rules that governed the daily operations and set the criteria for persons or entities to be affiliated with you, wouldn't you expect those who WILLFULLY CHOSE to be affiliated with you, and practice what you practiced, to comply with the regulations and traditions you set from the very beginning? Bro. Fahim continued:
And what standards are you using to determine who should be considered ‘regular’ or ‘irregular’ Masons?

I am using the standards of Freemasonry. The standards of Regularity were set by the root of Freemasonry and the Speculative system that you practice as we speak. The system of regularity practiced by ALL MASONS who have willfully chosen to be a part of the Craft. Now, if you have those who desire to practice masonry outside the established rules of Freemasonry, then they have to be able to handle the fact that they will be considered clandestine should they choose to claim Freemasonry but practice it totally contrary to the established rules. I mean you stated in your own work:
Yet, I as a Prince Hall Mason do respect PHA efforts to not give recognition to some of these illegitimate Black Masonic Orders that have a questionable charter and their history is suspect. Many of these type clandestine orders operate under the disguise of shadiness and are duping innocent brothers out of hundreds of dollars and in some cases thousands of dollars by engaging in fraudulent and scam practices of Freemasonry (I will never support such un-Masonic conduct).

What standards are you using to claim these illegitimate Black Masonic orders as "illegitimate"?
See, you can't on the one hand use the standard of regularity to judges those whom, by your own admission, are ILLEGITIMATE; then on the other hand attempt to dispute the same standard that I use to determine who is regular and who is not by application of the same standard. Bro. Fahim continued:
This is a rhetorical question because I already know the answer; the only standard that you have at your disposal in determining a ‘competent jurisdiction’ is that which those can trace their Masonic charters back to white folk in England (Negroes always need an affirmation from master) and we allow them function and act as supreme authority and determinist over the legality of Masons to be viewed as a ‘regular’ or ‘irregular’ Masonic entity. Here is the contradiction, why weren’t the white Masons charged with un-Masonic conduct unless you consider racism and white supremacy as upstanding and acceptable principles in Masonry?

Brother Fahim, you are a Mason, in a jurisdiction that traces its lineage back to a Charter that came from England. Your lodges Charter didn't come from Egypt or Nubia, it came from a Grand Lodge that traces its lineage to African Lodge #459, whose charter was given to them by ENGLAND.
Now, let me correct something for your.
England doesn't control what happens in America. All Grand Lodges of Regular origin are SOVEREIGN and INDEPENDENT. The United Grand Lodge of England doesn't not wield any power over any Grand Lodge in America. Keep in mind in 1826, African Grand Lodge declared Independence from the Grand Lodge of England. And after the Revolutionary War, the Lodges and Provincial Grand Lodges in America did the same. So where do you get the fact that England controls anything in America?

I think that you displace honor for control. We honor the UGLE for their being the mother of the Grand Lodge system we both practice today, and we respect their understanding and wisdom in Masonic matters, for THEY ARE THE ONES WHO CREATED THE SYSTEM, but ALL Grand Lodges in America are sovereign.

Now, the system of Freemasonry and its rules in Constitution were formed in 1721, long before the first lodge of African Americans, am I correct bro Fahim?
What this says is that the rules on how lodges are constituted was determined before Prince Hall  and the 14 others were initiated. They chose to come under the system ALREADY ESTABLISHED, they did not forma new kind of Freemasonry. Even when African Grand Lodge claimed their Independence they done so by virtue of the right to form a Grand Lodge that was sovereign. They did not deviate from the usages and customs of the day. So, England isn't ALLOWED to function as a supreme authority, their standards of regularity are ACCEPTED AND ADOPTED as a means of determining who is Masonic and who is not.
If you look at the Constitutions of these clandestine groups, they are attempting to set up groups that look exactly like Grand Lodges that were formed by the same standards that they will protest against. They will use the books of white masonic authors to prove argue their legitimacy, they will fashion their doing EXACTLY LIKE they see other Grand Lodges who accept the standards of Regularity, their only problem is that they don't want to conform to the legitimate means of becoming Grand Lodges and practices of Masons. You're either PRO-BLACK or you're NOT. It seems that those who try to promote a Pro-Black form of a Europeans created system, will have a hard time trying to preach against a people and a System when they practice the same...Fahim continued:
Now, for the record within the English language and Lexicon amnesty is a form of forgiveness contrary to your assessment (I thought I would bring this to your attention).

I appreciate your reminder there, but must I also remind you of the Constitution that expelled John G. Jones. They must come through the doors of regularity to get amnesty. Fahim continued:
We as Prince Hall Masons after 200 years of being denied full Masonic rights and privileges we forgave them (let me say White Folk) and thought that it was important to be accepted and recognized by our 400 year old oppressor.

I think they were striving to practice masonry as it was given to them and they chose to participate in. I don't think they were thinking in the manner in which you attempting to propose. And, although they deemed us clandestine for the sake of not having to deal with the issues of African Americans being on the level with them, THEY WERE IN VIOLATION OF THE PRINCIPLES OF FREEMASONRY. African American Lodges operated legitimately and in due form despite the claims. And truth prevailed, WHY? because we obtained a Charter through LEGAL MEANS. When we were placed in the scale of the standards of regularity, we were found to be just and true. Clandestine groups cannot do so, and they can fix their problem all they have to do is abandon their clandestine practices and come into the fold with their brother, you protest against their unity in that form for WHAT REASON? Fahim continued:
John Jones did not commit the type of atrocities that you all forgave white Masons for, but when it comes to another Black man and Mason you would like impose a double standard. This represents the epitome of Masonic hypocrisy.

Again, please familiarize yourself with John G. Jones.

The above is a letter dated Feb. 24, 1916 citing multiple violations of John G. Jones against members of AFAM groups. He was expelled from Masonry by Illinois in 1903, and continued to perpetrate violations against groups he either formed or affiliated himself with AFTER his expulsion. He wasn't even true to the groups that claimed him after the expulsion. These are not the words of Prince Hall Masons, but members of lodges that trace themselves to his work. These are the words of those who stood beside him and believed in him AFTER the expulsion, and these are the acts he committed against them.
No, I think that John G. Jones committed WORST than the forefathers of White men. He was a BLACK MAN, who tricked, stole and duped his own people, he is worst than the slave master who we know was different in regards to society and complexion. We have one of our own whom we put faith in and trusted to betray and trick his own...Fahim, I tell you that JGJ was a traitor to his race. Fahim continued:
You also subtlety questioned whether or not I am a Prince Hall Mason, I am member Doric Lodge # 28 PHA; Durham, NC located within 24th Masonic District (my membership can be verified and I am quite sure it has already been verified by you) and for record I am not hiding or ducking I stand by every word that I have stated.

I never questioned if you were Prince Hall, but since you stated it, YOU TODAY practice a European form of Freemasonry. So for all the pro-black talk you do, you are a member of a lodge who received their charter from a Grand Lodge, who traces their lineage to a Charter that was received from England, now who is being HYPOCRITICAL? You continued:
What is bothering you, perhaps in your mind, is how in the hell a PHA Mason has learned to think for himself (for the record I have been a Free Thinker for a very long time—I do not look for the Grand Lodge to think for me). I think you alluded to notion that I have bitten off more than I can handle (perhaps you do not know me, but this is what I do). 

No, I believe that I can help you with what I am thinking...It is how can a Pro-black advocate be a Mason in a Jurisdiction that traces their existence to an English Charter, and practice a form of masonry that derives its existence from England, then attempt to protest against England and their authority to set standards when they authored the system...I know you pride yourself as a "free-thinker", but thinking is free, it doesn't cost you anything. The question is, does your thinking match what you practice?
Let's see, Pro-Black Thinking...
English Styled Mason....No I don't believe so...Fahim Continued:
Please give me some new information on the John Jones issue other than parroting what others have said (it is almost like you guys are reading from a script and are fearful of deviating from the official version).

I believe that the above letter I posted will serve to satisfy that point, and I made sure that it was from HIS OWN PEOPLE, so that you could claim bias...Let me know if I need to post more new information on John G. Jones for you. Fahim continued:
My position is and will always be rooted in Black Masonic unity and there is nothing you and no one else can do to change my perspective. Let me reiterate my position; I think Black Masonic entities such as the one founded by John G. Jones should be allowed to enter into an acceptable and agreeable covenant with Prince Hall Masonry (our U.S. Commander-in-Chief and even prior Commander-in-Chiefs engaged their foreign enemies in talk diplomacy—USSR, Cuba, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, China, North Korea, etc., and diplomatic treaties and accords are/were established).

Fahim, this is Freemasonry, a whole different set of rules apply, and the only covenant with Prince Hall Lodges that will be experienced by JGJ groups is at the Altars of Prince Hall lodges, correcting the illegalities. To be Accepted they have to go through the same doors YOU DID. Fahim continued:
Your position truly lacks logic and reasoning; we should always exemplify the best in intelligence and use our principles in Masonry to breakdown artificial barriers and not find it conveniently to erect more ideological or philosophical barriers. 

That is your OPINION my dear brother, and again, I believe that your rhetoric is empty. The barriers that keeps JGJ groups outside the Temple was created by their own admission into lodges that were illegally formed. They can corrected that in a process that is quite simple, why deprive them of their right to be a member of a Regular and legitimate lodge, YOU ARE....

WB John L. Hairston, Editor
The Quill and The Sword

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Response to Bro. Fahim A. Knight -EL Part 3

The protocol has not changed, my response will be in all red, Bro. Fahim's response can be found here:

Bro. Fahim A. Knight El's Response

Bro. Fahim began his response:
Peace: Brother Hairston all of your arguments and contentions in some form or fashion I have dealt with similar arguments within the last ten years. Most of you all echo the same exact argument, which ultimately is the official line of Prince Hall Masonry.

Brother Fahim, you are Prince Hall correct?
What you deem as the "official line" is just the basic principles and customs of Freemasonry since time immemorial. There is a method to reconcile an illegitimate group into the Compasses of Regularity. You can have an "out-of-the-box-experience" if you'd like as you're entitled to that by virtue of your own Free Will and Accord, but it has to be based on something substantial; if not it comes off as a Brother who isn't quite adept in Freemasonry trying to fit an ill-shaped concept into the perfected system of the Ancient Craft. It just doesn't fit. You continued:
I have always been an outside the box thinker, writer and research. However, I reject your subtle attack on my character relative to my ability to put forth factual information and documentation

Subtle attack?!
I beg to differ my dear Brother, I made an observation that you attempted to provide a view of history without adequate documentation or evidence to support your position masonically. You then admitted that you didn't possess all the information. I don't know you to attack your character, I just pointed out a flaw in your concepts and the ideals you based it on. You continued:
White Freemasonry has not only gone astray, it is in violation of the principled language that defines brotherhood.

This is another verifiable evidence that you are not aware of the wording that you are using. There is no such think as BLACK or WHITE Freemasonry, there is only ONE Freemasonry. Here is what I will give you. Freemasons of this age are in violation of the principled language of Freemasonry, but predominately White Lodges and Jurisdictions are not the only ones at fault, it is also so-called Prince Hall lodges and jurisdiction who also break their plates at the table of universalism for the sake of what has happened in the past. You think the "denied 9" are ALL being denied recognition by so-called white lodges? My Brother, this is why you have to take off the rose lenses of Black Nationalism and see the Masonic landscape as it is. There are Prince Hall jurisdictions that are holding up the process of recognition in their state. The mainstream Jurisdiction is at the table, it is the Prince Hall jurisdiction that is deny them recognition.
Again, it is hypocritical for you to ask Prince Hall masons to forgive JGJ groups and accept them in their clandestine state and not hold the sins of their forefather against them, then in the same breath hold modern, predominately white lodges and masons accountable for the sins of their forefather. It means you truly don't believe in mercy, you just talk it, lip service. You continued:
Webster’s Dictionary defines brother as being “One closely united with another or others by religious, political, or family bond”. What happen to the belief in the Cardinal Virtues of Temperance, Fortitude, Prudence and Justice? Perhaps in the dynamics of race these words have very little meaning to the white Masonic body when it comes to their dark skinned Masonic Brothers.

You paint with such a broad brush. Not all predominately white jurisdictions hold racist tendencies toward African American masons, you're over-exaggerating. There are "BROTHERS" within the Prince Hall Organizations who don't match with the definition of Brother, what do we say of these?
My dear Brother, you must become aware of the Masonic landscape today and how it is functioning now. We are on the cusp of a masonic renaissance occurring.
You're passion can be in the unity of all black people, but realistically speaking, Freemasonry asks the unity of ALL People, broaden your horizons bro Fahim. You continued:
This argument is not about Prince Hall Masons being classified by Ancient Free and Accepted Masons as “irregular” or “clandestine”, it is convenient to hide behind such accusations, but what truly drives this fraternal division more than anything else is racism.

Bro. Fahim, This argument isn't even about racism, that is what you have conveniently diverted it to. My argument is that JGJ groups cannot receive amnesty in the present state and structure they are in, they must abandon clandestinism and join with regular lodges in order to be accepted in the family of Regular masons. MY argument, which hasn't diverted isn't based on racism, it is based on an in depth understanding of the nature of crimes committed against the Craft and the present illegitimacy of their organizational practices. YOUR argument may be about racial division and racism, but that is where you would rather be than to defend the flawed concept of offering amnesty to clandestine groups. You continued:
Masons are taught how to communicate with a fellow Mason in darkness and light based on the language of symbolism—a word (the being able to verbalize the passwords), sign (give the due guard), token (being able to give the grip) let me stop right there; IS THERE NO HELP FOR THE POOR WIDOW'S SON?

Yes there is, but you must put yourself in the PROPER POSITION and in the RIGHT AND LEGAL PLACE to receive it. You continued:
But this social phenomenal and antagonistic contradiction between black Masons and white Masons is steeped in a perhaps much larger historical debate of race in America and the culture that evolved out of Chattel Slavery (1555-1865) impacting the political, economic and social reality of race relations and affected how institutions were originated, as well as the formulation of group dynamics ideology. Dr. Asa Hilliard who authored book titled, “Reawakening of the African Mind” stated, “mental bondage is invisible violence. Formal physical slavery has ended in the United States. Mental slavery continues to this present day.

Anyone reading the course of the debate can see that you have shifted directions. But your above statement is misleading in the FACTUAL REALITY of TODAY'S MASONIC LANDSCAPE. All but 9 States recognize Prince Hall Masons; even in the 9 States, not all deny recognition to Prince Hall Masons; All United Supreme Councils (both Northern and Southern) are in recognition. Many white masonic scholars and writer are in full acceptance of the legitimacy of Prince Hall masons and enjoy fraternal relationship with them in the State. So where is the racial division outside of the sphere of the 9 Southern States? Where does your view of racial division with Freemasonry exist?
There is one place that you can look to, it is the fact that there still exists TWO Grand Lodges in the States. And, we can begin another whole topic on that alone.
I think you're statement above is filler and an ill fitted rhetoric that is totally outside the scope of the discussion at hand. You continued:
Sherrod N. Gresham in his book titled, “Prominent Prince Hall Masons on the Philatelic Materials: Stamps, First Day Covers, and Post Cards” stated, “On March 2, 1784, African Lodge #1 petitioned the Grand Lodge of England, the Premier or Mother Grand Lodge of the world, for a warrant (ort character), to organize a regular Masonic lodge, with all the rights and privileges thereunto prescribed. The Grand Lodge of England issued a character on September 29, 1784, to African Lodge # 459, the first lodge of blacks in America.” Black Masonry, for the most part, has accepted the racist practices of white masons in a passive manner. But black Freemasonry as an institution, will be called upon to be more vocal outwardly in the black community and move away from a tradition of apolitical and a non-engagement stance while the social issues are mounting in the black community and in reality there is no room for silence.

I think that you are taking his comments out of context, the paper wasn't addressing racial division in Freemasonry, but the struggles of Prince Hall Freemasonry in becoming MORE VISIBLE IN THEIR OWN COMMUNITIES. It is truth without doubt that Prince Hall lodges must now REGAIN their voice in their community, and RESTORE themselves as pillars in the communities they live in. It doesn't not take that much research to find where Prince Hall Freemasons were at the forefront in their communities, as many of the strategically positioned community leaders were members of the Fraternity, and the lodges were quite involved in their communities. Then after the 60's and that era, membership declined, which changed the policies of how candidates were investigated and received in the lodges. This began a shift in the focus of the lodges and jurisdictions. These changes are documented in many of the proceedings and other works of notable authors. We are TALKING FREEMASONRY HERE NOT CIVIL RIGHTS. It is a known fact that Freemasonry was well connected to the Church and Social Organizations such as the NAACP. So, while I agree with Bro. Gresham on his statement that we "will be called upon to be more vocal outwardly in the black community and move away from a tradition of apolitical and a non-engagement stance while the social issues are mounting in the black community", I also add that Prince Hall Freemasons were once VERY VOCAL in the community, there was a shift in the paradigm that had everything to do with US and not what WHITE MASONS WERE DOING...They were suffering from the same membership decline. I think that the above excerpt doesn't apply to the context of the argument that you're attempting to make, he placed the responsibility on black people, not white racism...You continued:
The above historical facts should serve as evidence which to dismantle the question of whether or not Prince Hall Freemasonry should be designated and viewed by white Masons as “irregular”

Bro. Fahim, you're speaking in the microcosmic. The vast majority of white Freemasons and predominately white Jurisdictions do not view African American freemasons, who are members of Prince Hall jurisdictions as irregular. I challenge you to find a predominately white jurisdiction, outside the southern States that are not in Fraternal Relations with Prince Hall Grand Lodges, who view Prince Hall lodges as irregular. You're not being factual. You continued:
thus, there is enough historical documentation that suggest that these African-American Masons did received a legitimate and authentic charter from the Grand Lodge of England. Now! I am quite sure this argument has been presented over and over again, to the white Grand Lodges of the United States, but to little or no avail.

The above is based on a faulty premise, can you show me more Grand Lodges than the southern ones that view Prince Hall lodges as such, provide your documentation. You have to catch up with what is going on in the masonic world today my brother. You continued:

Racism is a mindset that considers black people as a group as being inferior to whites because of physical (‘genotypical’ and ‘phenotypical’) traits. The racist further believes that these physical traits are detriments of social behavior and moral or intellectual qualities, and ultimately presumes that this inferiority is a legitimate basis for inferior social treatment of black people in society.

Can you find me a Grand Lodge, predominately white, that believe this? I don't want you to "interpret" anything, I want you to provide documentation as to the above statement and allegation against white Grand Lodges. You continued:
Brother Hairston, now, you sound a bit emotional; let me take you back to my initial premise and what got us on the questing of race relative to Freemasonry and the United States and the question of Brother John G. Jones and Ancient Free and Accepted Masonry. I have said consistently and throughout this debate and have written numerous pieces on my Blog advocating Black Masonic unity.

Again, another diversionary tactic to claim I am emotional, when NO emotion was involved in any of my statements, YOU ARE ASSUMING. I have never left the initial premise, I have always stayed the course. I remained on topic, it was YOU who took the conversation to racism. Black Masonic unity is only possible AMONG MASONS. Those who are members of illegitimate groups must correct the first point which is to abandon clandestine masonic practices and join regular lodges. I have reiterated this as a solution from the beginning, you were not willing to accept the solution. You continued:
What’s hypocritical is for Prince Hall Masons to embrace the racist and white confederate Masons in the United States of America as their brothers (overlooking their past un-Masonic history and conduct towards Prince Hall Masons and we have found ways to ease the social and political tension), but will not extended an olive branch to another black man who was raised and went through all the Masonic Houses and no doubt was once a Prince Hall Affiliated Mason in good standings.

I want to you to really evaluate you above statement in light of the facts.

1. Prince Hall Masons do not embrace racist masons, even when the racist masons are BLACK.

2. Now again, you ask Prince Hall masons to overlook the past history of JGJ, but can't do the same for Good Brothers of the White race who don't hold the same sentiments as their forefathers; this is hypocritical. We don't overlook any part of history, I am a historian. But, I know how to judge a persons character based on their presentation. And the laws of masonry are JUST THAT, LAWS.

3. JGJ was indeed raised in a Prince Hall Lodge and was accepted as long as he was in good standing there, when he was expelled according to the law, that ended his acceptance as a Mason. Which of the JGJ members are members of Prince Hall lodges NOW? You see how your statement falls in on itself?

You will readily recognize the legitimacy of Prince Hall lodges and how that JGJ connection to that legitimacy is to be remembered, but shouldn't followers of JGJ do as he did? get raised in a Prince Hall lodge, go through the Houses and be in good standing? wouldn't that be more appropriate, to be as he WAS, and not what he BECAME? I appreciate you for that part there. You continued:
The history of Jones is clear and we all know that he was expelled and/or suspended for various conducts that went against our constitution and/or PHA Masonry code book (this much I agree with the argument and this history has been well documented).

If this is the case, then why ask JGJ members to remain in lodges that are products of all that you yourself have readily admitted, but enjoy the benefits of regularity yourself? I think that is selfish and not very pro black of you. You're telling JGJ members, yeah JGJ violated the law and was expelled, which consequently makes your lodges illegal masonically, but you remain in that clandestine state while I myself enjoy the benefits of Regularity and sit in the ship that once covered your founder...Bro. Fahim, in your attempt to produce "black masonic unity", you are really entombing a whole population of potential masons from being able to share in the same rights, light and benefits you have...Is this really unity? or the rhetoric of a black nationalist that has deliberately narrowed his view of Freemasonry to maintain his beliefs? You continued:
But if Negroes can forgive their former slave master’s children for committing crimes against humanity (slavery was a crime against humanity) in which there were no other crime in the Americas like the effect of the Transatlantic Slave, Middle Passage and Chattel Slavery, it lasted for 310 years. And we forgave them for these heinous or horrid crimes.

I think you believe that forgiveness and holding one accountable are the same thing. It is not. While we can forgive JGJ for his acts, there was a masonic sentence pronounced that he willfully chose to disregard to commit further acts. The lodges that descend from his illegal work must come through the proper channels to enjoy membership in the masonic brotherhood. Forgiveness has nothing to do with that, that is just the LAW. It is like one who commits a crime. The victim may forgive him as a person for the crime perpetrated against him, but it doesn't vacate the verdict and sentence pronounced, because he must be held accountable for that crime. JGJ is still to this day under Masonic sentence. members of lodges under his illegal charters must correct this by abandoning the FRUIT of his work, and come under a lawful covering, JUST AS YOU ARE NOW. This is called JUSTICE! You continued:
No, John G. Jones did kill over 100 million Africans, separated black families, unmerciful raped our women—stripe us of our God (surely the Christianity and the white Jesus that you teach and pray to were given to you by our former slave masters), took our names, culture, tradition, folkways, mores and made us into Negroes. There was nothing Brother John G. Jones did in this dispute that amounts to the crimes that the white American task makers and colonial masters put on people of African decent.

Masonically Speaking, YES!
The well documented practices where many African American masons are excluded from the fountain of Regularity and becoming part and partial of the Brotherhood of Freemasonry due to the lies taught by these groups. The money made at the expense of those who truly believe that they are legitimate. The constant dividing these unsuspecting members from their right to be regular and legal is equivalent of a Masonic death, that cries for the right hand of raising under the true legacy and legitimacy of Freemasonry. You continued:
Yet, in our Willie Lynch mindset we have forgiving those who committed, perhaps one of the greatest atrocity to found any place in human history. Yes, amnesty and exoneration, and forgiveness should be top priority in assessing and evaluating John G. Jones linage Freemasonry.

I disagree, forgiveness has happened, the amnesty isn't going to, but the option that is the most suitable and most masonic is available, they can JOIN REGULAR LODGES and enjoy freemasonry the same as you, don't deprive them Brother. You continued:
We cannot change the history that has already been written, but could objectively come to the table and reach across the aisle in spirit of brotherly love and resolve this over 100 year dispute and move forward in the spirit of black Masonic unity.

The dispute can end today, by JGJ groups joining regular Grand Lodges, which is my utmost desire for them all. Nothing else is suitable, because you will still have clandestine lodges. You cannot trace yourself to an expelled mason and then believe that it is masonic to just accept all the illegal work. You actually speak from the position who really has no regard for what is just, just what will support your position. You continued:
No, my premise is the same, I do not have to use diversionary tactics to show and demonstrate who position is flawed and it will lend itself to the real hypocrite having to stand up. I have no respect for the United Grand Lodge of England (UGLE) who we have sought for over two centuries—working and fighting to obtained recognition from European Masonic entities is a disgrace and a shame in the eyes of our ancestors. We in the 21st century, a so-called free people still seeking approval from white people, it represents a despicable act. I am will take on all the PHA Grand Masters on this issue and I will defeat all of them because my position is rooted in the universal order of good and the universe is using me as its vessel. Also, send me all the PHA scholars my way as well and I will intellectual handcuff them as well.
I had to laugh here, because I think you're getting a bit ahead of yourself. You have to do a much better job of being able to maintain a topic than this to call out all Masonic Scholars. You would have to be actually versed in Freemasonry.
I think you should grab the nearest book on Freemasonry and truly do your homework. What happens when one begins to find the fact that he has no more place to position his feet, he then become arrogant and begins to speak chaotic in hope of inciting the passions of unsuspecting, but the awakened and conscious Freemasons know that you have failed utterly in trying to fit a black nationalist ideal in a universal concept...No, you just calm down my dear brother and contemplate and use wisdom in your speech, because you have in one stroke of the keyboard lost what support you did have in the discussion.


WB John L. Hairston, Editor
The Quill and The Sword

Response to Fahim El Part 2

Bro. Fahim A. Knight-El had the opportunity to respond to my post. Again, his words will remain in Black and my response in red. Bro. Fahim A. Knight-El's full response can be read here:

Bro. Fahim A. Knight El's response

Bro Fahim began:Peace: Brother Hairston, I did read your rebuttal on your Quill and Sword Blog site. I appreciate you giving me a complete response, but your dissecting of my words left a lot to be desired. Let me first bring this much to your attention relative to the role race has played in American Freemasonry. I agree with this much of your commentary Freemasonry was founded on the universal principles of brotherhood regardless of race, color, creed and/or ones religious affiliations. But may be you unintentionally overlooked the fact that Prince Hall, the founder of Black Freemasonry who established Lodge # 459 and African Lodge # 1 was established because white Masons denied him and other Masons of African descent the right to petition and join white American style Scottish Rite Lodges within the United States of America. 

My dear Brother, I am well aware of the role race played in Freemasonry, in fact, I will giving a lecture at a Masonic College here in Washington State on May 22, entitled, Racial Division within Freemasonry in America: Addressing Masonic Segregation. So please understand that I well aware of the role race has played and is playing within Freemasonry. But, what does that have to do with how Freemasonry is SUPPOSE TO BE PRACTICED?
It doesn't make a difference how one distorts or misrepresents Freemasonry, the principles of Freemasonry are still the principles of Freemasonry.
Now, while America may have used race as a point of distinction, and all the claims that they made concerning African American Masons, how much of the claims of clandestinism was actually TRUE?

In fact many of the white Masonic scholars and writers came to the defense of Masonry practiced by those lodges that were predominantly black and denied access to the Brotherhood of Freemasonry. But the whole while, the Charter in possession of those members of African Lodge #459 was legitimate and from a Grand Body of Competent Jurisdiction.

The difference in the proposal of amnesty with the JGJ groups is that their charter is NOT legitimate and they have no legal line to any regular masonic authority. So, the claims made by regular masons that excludes them from the fold, is based on accurate and verifiable evidence.

Allow me to correct a couple things though in the above portion of your response. What Scottish Rite Lodges were African American Masons excluded from?

Secondly, what Scottish Rite Lodges did African American Masons petition?

I think you may have some information wrong or mixed up. A good research of how the Scottish Rite was established among African American may be in order.
I also recommend a review of Prince Hall Affiliated history, as it will reveal that there were 11 black men in Philadelphia Pennsylvania who received their degrees in England and Ireland when they petitioned Prince Hall and African Lodge #459 in 1797 for a warrant.
You should also find that Provincial Grand Master Joseph Warren of St. Andrew's Grand Lodge was in the process of issuing a Charter to African Lodge before he died. There is much more to the story, but I believe that your pro-black ideals causes a selective and bias approach to history. You continued:
This forced the abolitionist and freedom fighter Hall to establish an all Black Masonic Order that functioned sovereign and independent of their white Masonic counterparts (this represented black pride and stood as a symbol of Black Nationalism).

Again, we have a deficiency in providing an accurate presentation of the history. From 1775 to 1808 Prince Hall led African Lodge #459 as Worshipful Master, and was always under the Jurisdiction of Ireland and England. It wasn't until 1826, that GM John T. Hilton made the first OFFICIAL ADDRESS OF SOVEREIGNTY and INDEPENDENCE for all domestic and foreign masonic authority. So, your black nationalist theory misses the mark due to a revisionist attempt at an account of the facts. So, hopefully you can do just a bit more research on the REAL history of Prince Hall and African Lodge #459. Let me also add, that up until 1827, African Lodge continually sought recognition from Regular Lodges and Jurisdictions. There is way too much documentation to state otherwise. You continued:It actually could be looked at as one of the earliest Black separatist movement in America prior to Paul Cuffee, Martin Delaney, Marcus Garvey, Bishop Henry McNeal Turner, etc.

This statement fails by virtue of being based on a flawed premise. African Lodge #459 sought admission by recognition for many years. There was no separatist movement, the members of African Lodge #459 understood Freemasonry, which led to their continued attempts to be admitted into Fraternal relations with white Jurisdictions. Even after the establishment of the African Grand Lodge, there was always the notion that Freemasonry was universal. This is what I mean when I say that black nationalist ideals can't mix with freemasonry because it clouds the picture and taints the interpretation of the history. You continued:White racism and white supremacy had little to no respect for the universal tenets and principles in which Freemasonry was supposed to rest upon—morality, friendship and brotherly love.

I can agree with you to a certain extent. No, then, white lodges did insert racism as a means of dealing with African American masons. What do you say now that the majority f Masonic Jurisdictions actually recognize each other?
This doesn't mean it should stop there, because there is another step that should be taken...But because a populace of people chose not to practice the principles doesn't negate the fact that those principles are still the core essence of Freemasonry, and surely doesn't negate the fact that clandestine lodge are just that, clandestine-whether they are white or black lodges. You continued:
There were a number of legal court battles where white Masons sued and took Prince Hall Masons to court for daring to have the audacity to wear Masonic regalia and publically display the Masonic Square and Compass in venues.

See, as writers we are held to a high standard in the presentation of Truth. Now, I have to hold your feet to the fire. Can you name 4 Masonic court cases that you speak of where White lodges sued black lodges? You stated that there are a number of case, I would like for you to list 4 cases of such. Thank you in advance. You continued:
Moreover, Prince Hall's white Masonic brethren said Black Masons had no right to legally display any Masonic symbols because Prince Hall Masons were considered clandestine and irregular Masons and this so-called status compromised their right to exist under the banner of a Freemasonry organization and entity (just take a moment and read the history of the Shriners Jubilee Day) .

True, they did indeed state that, but the question is, WAS IT TRUE?
Now, the same question is posed to JGJ and other clandestine groups, could they actually defend themselves by documentation against such accusations?
No, because they have no legitimate paperwork or charter lineage. Big difference bro. Fahim. You continued:
So it was White Nationalism that drove this divisiveness (Jim Crow was initiated with the 1896 Supreme Court decision of Plessy vs. Ferguson where the high court ruled that it was legal to practice segregation and discrimination and it was not until 1954 with Brown vs. Board of Education decision overturned the Plessy decision and declared separate but equal as being unconstitutional). 

All of this is true, ut what does it have to do with JGJ groups being clandestine and the fact that they cannot get around it. If all racism was eliminated from the face of the earth, clandestine groups would still have the problem of being clandestine. But it can be fixed, and all it takes is for them to abandon their clandestine practices and petition a regular lodge, simple. You continued:The white Masons ignored the social consciousness of our jurisprudence system as it was litigated in the U.S. Supreme Court and continued for decades to practice institutionalized racism against so-called African American Masons.
This is an exaggeration. White masons may have been slow to recognition, but the debate on the legitimacy of PHA jurisdictions had long been settled and accepted as early as 1900, with the writing of MW William H. Upton's book, Light on a Dark Subject: Critical Examination. Not all White Masons accepted the views of racist white masons, hence the changes and progress that has been achieved in America on the masonic front. There is still work to do, but for the most part the barriers are being broken down. I mean,  the United Supreme Councils recognized their counterpart in the Southern jurisdiction, amid 9 States under their jurisdiction not recognizing Prince Hall Grand Lodges. I believe that you're exaggerating a bit and embellishing. You continued:
But you are accusing me of injecting race into the Freemasonic equation and you are conveniently overlooking the fact that for over 200 years Black Masons and White Masons could not have interchangeable lodge visitations because white Grand Lodges in the United States did not officially recognize Prince Hall Masonry. Now, this is not to say, that there have not been over the years some integrated Masonic Lodges in the United States of America where black and white Masons co-existed; these instances prior to 20 years ago were more of the exception rather than the rule.

So, in other words you admit that changes have been made and what was 20 years ago, isn't today. Today, the racism in Freemasonry is in the minority in the masonic climate of the 21st Century. You just have to accept that fact. But this in no way relieves clandestine groups of the responsibility to correct their status, because their reason for being clandestine has NOTHING to do with racism AT ALL, now does it? You continued:For example, in my Masonic Jurisdiction of North Carolina, it was just 6 years ago that after 138 years of racist segregation that North Carolina white Masons finally passed a decree recognizing Prince Hall Masonry as a regular body of Masons. So, my brother race has always played a very high and prominent role in American Freemasonry. I believe that there are still 9 states that still will not allow a black Mason to enter their Blue Lodges, Shrine Temples, consistory, etc. My position on Black Masonic unity has plenty of merit. 
How many white lodges do you visit?
See, your concepts of black masonic unity has no merit when you expect Regular masonic lodges and masons to accept the illegal nature and practices of these group for the sake of "unity". It doesn't coincide with Freemasonry. Please my brother, do more research on the subject and then let's talk.
WB John L. Hairston, Editor
The Quill and The Sword