Answer: It’s pretty simple, really. You ask any member of the fraternity for an application, fill it out, and return it. That’s it.
If you don’t know anyone who’s a member, then do this:
- Go to the Grand Lodge website for your jurisdiction (every state in the United States has one, almost every country (besides the United States) has one.
- Use the Lodge Locator tool found on most Grand Lodge websites to find a Lodge near you. if the Grand Lodge doesn’t have a tool or list of Lodges on the website, then go to your local phonebook and look up Masonic Lodge. if that still doesn’t work (or you can’t find a phonebook) google Masonic Lodge and your city.
- Once you’ve found a Lodge, contact the Secretary. Ask to attend the next public event or Lodge dinner, and go down and meet the members. Talk with them. See if the Lodge is a “good fit” for you. Every Lodge has a different flavor; if you don’t feel comfortable in the first Lodge, find another one and do the same thing: go meet the members.
- Once you’re comfortable, ask for an application. Fill it out and return it.
- You’ll talk to three members – they’re interviewing you – and then your application will be voted on at the next Stated Meeting. This process can go quickly or slowly depending on how often the Lodge meets, and how quick they are to assign an investigative committee to you.
- You’ll receive notification after the vote about scheduling your degrees. There are three of them; Entered Apprentice, Fellowcraft, and Master Mason.
There are some requirements to joining:
- You must be a man.
- You must not have a criminal past.
- You must believe in a Supreme Being.
To correct some misconceptions:
- You don’t have to have “a good and respectful character among fellow peers.”
- You don’t have to be “at least 21” to join; different jurisdictions have different requirements – some require a man to be 18, others require them to be 21. Check with your Lodge secretary to find out the minimum age.
- There’s no such thing as “Masonic age.”
- Freemasonry isn’t a “brotherhood.” It’s a fraternity.
- Freemasonry isn’t an “order.” It’s a fraternity.
- Before you join, you don’t have to read anything. You certainly don’t need to read Manly P. Hall, Albert Pike, or (shudder) John Robinson.
- Do not read “The Lost Keys of Freemasonry.”
- Do not read “Born in Blood.”
- Do not read “Morals & Dogma.”
- Do not read “What the Ancient Wisdom Expects of its Disciples.”
- “The Lost Keys of Freemasonry,” “Born in Blood,” and “What the Ancient Wisdom Expects of its Disciples” will mean nothing at all to you until you’re a member of the fraternity. Even then it’s questionable as to whether they’re useful books that will help you understand the fraternity.
- “Morals & Dogma” is an old book, written by Albert Pike, that is very, very, very dry reading. It’s specific to the Scottish Rite and has nothing at all to do with joining Freemasonry or the Blue Lodge. Don’t read it. If you join the Scottish Rite, read “A Bridge to Light.”
- If you want to read an EXCELLENT book on Freemasonry, I recommend “Freemasons for Dummies” by Chris Hodapp. It’s the best book out there.
If you have any other questions, feel free to ask a Freemason.