Sunday, August 16, 2009

Orthodox Masons?

Is it allowed by Halacha for an Orthodox Jew to become a Freemason? I know that there is nothing that prohibits it from the Masonic perspective, but what about the other way? Are there any rabbinic rulings that anyone knows about?


Blogger evanstonjew said...

I guess the former rabbi Jackie Mason doesn't count.

I know that Prof. Katz the great Jewish historian has a book on the topic. In the 18th century left over Shabsai Tzvi people joined, from which some of the masonic mysteries came..

Remember The Honeymooners, maybe not.

The book is "Jews and Freemasons in Europe 1723-1939" BY Jacob Katz.

August 18, 2009 12:18 PM  
Blogger -suitepotato- said...

I know of nothing myself but it is likely not a good idea given that members must profess a belief in a supreme being but not elaborate further so there's an inherent assumption that whatever each member believes to be that supreme being is equal to what any other believes. We engage in a silent live and let live in the larger society, but it's getting too close to saying that the Christian Trinity is on the same level as my belief in G-d, the substance of which Maimonides covered and the two are not remotely the same.

Not being paranoid or anything but it treads very dangerously to providing its own halacha and that's not something to engage in, as far as I'm concerned. If you will have no other gods besides Him, then you should have no other laws besides his where the subjects his laws specifically cover are concerned.

We all understand secular governmental laws and we deal with that as a matter of realpolitik and I doubt G-d doesn't allow for that, but Masonry is an optional way that you are not forced by situation to obey, but have to pursue it. Pursuing something that comes with its own path that crosses the first one from He to whom I owe ultimate allegiance sounds wrong.

August 19, 2009 2:21 PM  

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