Frequently Asked Questions
“Wherever Freemasonry flourishes there will be found the highest type of citizenship and the best standard of living.” – Albert Pike, 33°
Why Become a 32° Scottish Rite Mason?
Although there is no higher degree than that of a Master Mason, the 29 degrees of the Scottish Rite serve to enrich the philosophy of the Symbolic Lodge. A Mason who chooses to further his Masonic experience by becoming a 32° Scottish Rite Mason will be expanding upon the fundamental principles of Freemasonry. In the Scottish Rite, you will indeed find an untold wealth of knowledge. It will teach you more about Masonry. In fact, it aids, supplements and reinforces the blue lodge in every way. By joining Scottish Rite, you have an opportunity to expand upon your knowledge of Freemasonry, to widen your circle of friends, and to serve humanity in unique ways. Degree Structure Whereas a Symbolic Lodge appears in almost every community in the United States, the Scottish Rite units tend to be regional and are called “Valleys.”
Most Valleys have four distinct parts; although, in some areas, a candidate may be required to continue his degrees in a neighboring Valley. The Lodge of Perfection confers the 4° through 14°. These are commonly referred to as the Ineffable degrees. In the 11 lessons, the candidate will observe many references, scenes and characters, which recall and amplify the three Symbolic degrees. The Council of Princes of Jerusalem confers the 15° and 16°, which teach lessons using the settings based on the Babylonian captivity of the Hebrews and the building of the second Temple. The Chapter of Rose Croix confers the 17° and 18°, and is the spiritual heart of the Scottish Rite. These degrees teach that the only lasting Temple is in the soul of man. The Consistory confers the 19° through 32°. These degrees portray many memorable lessons that range in settings from the days of chivalry through to the 20th century. A Scottish Rite degree can offer a new reflection each time it is performed or observed. The lessons are taught through parables in the form of plays, allowing Masons the opportunity to bond through theater, stage work, costuming, makeup, set design and musical activities. Cast members present the lessons, which are taken from Biblical and modern historical events to candidates who learn from observing the performances.
How long will it take?
A Master Mason may become a 32° Scottish Rite Mason in one day, or he may take each body of degrees separately over a period of time. Each degree requires elaborate preparation, so not every degree is presented in a degree-conferring session.
Is memorization required?
A candidate is not required to commit to memory the Scottish Rite degrees, signs, passwords, tokens or grips. No examinations are given either during the degree work or for admission to the meetings of other Valleys. Following initiation, a member gains entrance to the meetings of any Scottish Rite Valley by presenting a current dues card. A new member receives a 32° passport which is used to record the date that each degree is witnessed.
How do I get started?
Step 1. You can get started by being a Master Mason in good standing with your Lodge. Step 2. Go to aasrdanville.org, print a petition, fill it out and send it to the Valley Office with required fees. Step 3. Witness the 4th Degree. This makes you a Scottish Rite Mason. You will need 3 more Degrees after the 4th Degree and before the 32nd Degree to become a 32nd Degree Mason. You can start on the road or witness all required degrees at a Valley Reunion. Unlike in Blue Lodge, Scottish Rite degrees are conferred as allegories or plays, each teaching an important moral lesson.
What are the fees?
Candidate Fees are $200.00. This fee includes all 29 Degrees. $100.00 must be paid before the 4th Degree is witnessed. There are payment plans available. Annual dues are $90.00. This breaks down into monthly payments of $7.50 a month if you would rather budget it monthly.