Freemasonry is essentially a School of Values ​​and a practice of Fraternity. The Masonic method relies on symbols and allegories, contained in a RITE. The Rite is a coherent and integrated set of Rituals for the different moments in which Masonic work is structured. The first moment is INITIATION, a ritual designed to mark an effective rupture between the profane state and the path of research and improvement that the Initiate will pursue thereafter.

The path of each individual acquires possibility and full meaning when integrated into a community of Initiates, who continue the work done by their predecessors, transmitting them enriched to future generations, sedimented in a heritage of knowledge called TRADITION.

This transmission in the initiatory ceremonies operates between the Lodge and the Initiate creating an unbroken chain from Master to Disciple linking each Freemason to the beginning of Time.

The initiatory transmission is supported by a set of rules of conduct that have existed for a long time in the form of unwritten law, essential for the definition and functioning of any Masonic Jurisdiction. In the opinion of the great majority of theorists, the Landmarks are immutable and the whole Mason is obliged to keep them intact by virtue of solemn and inviolable compromises.

 

Hence the following principles:

1. A Landmark is perpetually irreplaceable;

2. No new Landmark can be created;

3. Theoretically, however, it may be made explicit;

4. Even if one conceived the possibility of meeting in a world convention all the regular Masons of the planet, and that even if this convention issued a unanimous vote, it would be stopped by the rules mentioned above;

5. A Landmark is not a symbol, not an allegory, but a rule;

6. It is not, however, a dogma, since it is of human origin;

7. Anyone who disagrees with these maxims comes "ipso facto" from the Masonic truth.

 

Landmarks

According to A. Mackey, the Landmarks are numbered 25:

1. Means of recognition;

2. The division into degrees of symbolic Masonry;

3. The legend of the third degree;

4. The government of the Fraternity by a Grand Master elected by all Masons;

5. The prerogative of the Grand Master to preside at any Masons meeting in the territory of his jurisdiction;

6. The faculty of the Grand Master to authorize dispensation to confer Degrees before the prescribed time;

7. The prerogative of the Grand Master to grant a license for the installation and operation of the Stores;

8. The prerogative of the Grand Master to initiate and exalt in sight;

9. The Masons need to be distributed in Stores;

10. The government of each Lodge by a Venerable and two Watchers;

11. The need for the Lodge to work under cover;

12. The right of all Master Mason to be represented in the general assemblies of the Order and to give instructions to his representatives;

13. The right of every Mason to seek the Grand Lodge or the General Assembly against the resolutions of his Lodge;

14. The right of all the Mason to visit and to have seat in the regular Shops;

15. That, if no one knows personally in the Lodge the Mason that visits it, it will not be entered without a rigorous control;

16. That no Store can interfere in the activities of another;

17. That every Mason is subject to the criminal laws and Masonic regulations in force in the jurisdiction in which he lives;

18. That every candidate for initiation must be a free man and of an older age;

19. That all the Mason is to believe in the existence of God as Great Architect of the Universe;

20. That all the Mason shall believe in the resurrection, and a future life;

21. That a book of the Law of God should be an indispensable part of the equipment of a Lodge;

22. That all men are equal before God and in the Lodge are on the same level;

23. That Masonry is a secret Society possessing secrets that can not be disclosed;

24. Freemasonry consists of a speculative science founded on an operative art;

25. That the Landmarks of Freemasonry are unalterable.

 

The Traditional Grand Lodge of Portugal adheres integrally to the Landmarks of A. Mackey, with the following explanations, resulting from the different semantic content of the words in the change of Language and in the passage of Time:

We understand that where Mackey wrote "Man" (Man) he meant the set of "Mankind" (Humanity), including of course the female people. GLTP considers abusive and erroneous the restricted interpretation that would limit access to the Masonic Order to the male sex.

That belief in God is a matter of conscience, absolutely inviolable, and that, therefore, the question can not be posed. It is up to each one, in the moments of his life in which he questions himself, to formulate the answer, which can vary in time or even be nontransmissible in words. Thus the GLTP enunciates to the Candidates the principles on which it is based and leaves it entirely to the conscience of each one to accept to belong to it or not, without having to formulate, directly or indirectly, an explicit answer.

Freemasonry is not a religion nor a substitute for Religion. Religious discussions are totally forbidden. References to GADU should be as scarce as possible and any religious practices such as prayers and invocations should be avoided. In the same way, any manifestation of less respect for the religion that each one adopts should be totally banished.

Freemasonry is a secret society only in the sense that its works require a sacred space because they imply a cut with the passions and temporal rhythms typical of the profane world, so that its own method can produce results. GLTP does not allow in its own way practices contrary to or in the margins of the State Laws, namely regarding concealment of the affiliation. However, GLTP will defend the right to privacy of all its members and will never reveal the identity of its affiliates, except to the legitimate Authorities in the circumstances that the Law dictates.

The secrets that Freemasonry preserves in its possession can not be divulged because they are individual and non-transferable discoveries that are reserved to its Initiates, and that even when explained to the profane they do not make any sense for him/her.

© 2017 - Grande Loja Tradicional de Portugal