John W. Bizzack, Ph.D.

Shooting Ourselves In The Foot – American Freemasonry: A Tumbled House

By John W. Bizzack, Ph.D. / May 8, 2023 /

The first time American Freemasonry shot itself in the foot was in the final decades of the 18th century. A December 1779 document tells us the state and condition of the Fraternity and offered a bold recommendation to address the condition. The failure of existing Grand Lodges to act on the recommendation cocked the pistol. The failure to do anything about the condition of the Fraternity that led to the recommendation pulled the trigger that led to the limp. The call for Grand Lodges to examine the 1779 recommendation would be made thirteen more times before the end of 1860. Each call was rejected. The indifference and failure to recognize and acknowledge the serious underlying issues that caused the recommendations to resurface for decades led to an aggravating, lasting limp.

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Carnivalization Of Freemasonry John Bizzack

The Carnivalization Of American Culture And Its Effect On Freemasonry

By John W. Bizzack, Ph.D. / May 7, 2023 /

If you sense there is much less rigorous analysis about so many things today, trust your senses. We skim a lot. And details surrounding complicated problems get in the way of skimmers. We do not seem to have a society-wide interest in engaging in historical thinking these days, even though such thinking offers the opportunity to think and reason in more sophisticated ways. Few seem to devote much time or demonstrate personal inspiration to mine truth from the quicksand of inference and innuendo in which our technology engulfs us. Notwithstanding the positives from the fact that we have a repository of the world’s information at our fingertips more than at any time in history, the Internet gives millions of people the opportunity to pioneer, hone, and to largely advance their skimming skills.

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Masonic Mavericks John Bizzack

Masonic Mavericks – A Spotting Guide For Freemasons

By John W. Bizzack, Ph.D. / May 7, 2023 /

When we hear someone referred to as a “maverick” we might first think of the American Western dramatic television series with comedic overtones that aired from 1957-1962, or the 1996 American Western comedy film based on the same story line. Some may know the word because it is the name of a professional basketball team based in Dallas, a hockey team in New York, the call sign of a fighter pilot in a popular 1986 film, or the name of the model of a 1970 Ford automobile. The meaning of many words in our language may change over time with popular usage and slang. The evolution of the meaning for words and even phrases is known as semantic change or drift. That semantic drift gives us several meanings for maverick.

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Masonic Ignorance

By John W. Bizzack, Ph.D. and Dan M. Kemble / May 7, 2023 /

Judging from the number of times we find references to Masonic ignorance in books, essays, articles, and Grand Lodge Proceedings from the mid-1800s through the 1900s, one can reasonably conclude that there was much of it. The same conclusion may be drawn with respect to the first two decades of the 2000s. Some voice a concern that the term Masonic ignorance is offensive, inappropriate, and unacceptable language today, which sounds like an affirmation to others that there is an ignorance about what it is that the term itself actually refers and describes.

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It’s Always A Question Of Leadership And In Freemasonry, It Is No Different

By John W. Bizzack, Ph.D. / May 7, 2023 /

Scottish philosopher and essayist Thomas Carlyle gave a series of lectures on heroism in 1840, and later published his work under the title of, On Heroes, Hero-Worship, and The Heroic in History. He argued that the actions of the “Great Man” play a key role in history, claiming that “the history of the world is but the biography of great men.” His book led to what is called The Great Man Theory. He believed heroes shape history through both their personal attributes and divine inspiration. According to Carlyle, history is influenced by extraordinary leaders. This ability to lead is something with which certain people are simply born, Carlyle believed, and not something that could be developed.

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Canker Worm John Bizzack

The Canker Worm On The Rose – The Story Of The Struggle In Kentucky From 1800-2020 To Develop A Consistent Approach To The Observance Of Freemasonry

By John W. Bizzack, Ph.D. and Dan M. Kemble / May 7, 2023 /

In The Canker Worm On the Rose – The Story of the Struggle in Kentucky From 1800-2020 to Develop a Consistent Approach in the Observance of Freemasonry, John W. Bizzack, Ph.D., Past Master of Lexington Lodge No. 1, traces the explosive growth of the Grand Lodge of Kentucky and explores the ensuing issues that the Grand Lodge, and all of Kentucky Freemasonry, faced as a result of unplanned and unrestrained growth. Such a study is not necessarily new. Other Masonic writers have addressed similar aspects of this subject at different times. What is new about Worshipful Brother Bizzack’s work, however, is that he allows the story of Kentucky Freemasonry to be narrated by those who actually made it.

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The Age Of Unreason Dissecting The Infamy Of The Morgan Affair And Its Aftermath

By John W. Bizzack, Ph.D. / May 6, 2023 /

This paper is an excerpt from The Age of Unreason: Dissecting the Infamy of the Morgan Affair And Its Aftermath The Age of Unreason is a 21st century investigation into the contradictions, deceit, and hysteria surrounding the scandal that almost destroyed American Freemasonry. In contrast to many past writings about the Morgan Affair, The Age of Unreason puts the writings, events, and circumstances of the era in factual context, bringing to light of the motives of many who were involved on both sides of the scandal leading to much of the hysteria surrounding it for more than a decade.

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Seed Sowing

By John W. Bizzack, Ph.D. / May 6, 2023 /

If there is an allegory bursting with parallels to Freemasonry and the Fraternity that surrounds it, The Parable of the Sower is it. The Parable of the Sower concerns a sower who scatters seed, which falls on four different types of ground. The hard ground by the wayside prevents the seed from sprouting at all, and the seed becomes nothing more than bird food. The stony ground provides enough soil for the seeds to germinate and begin to grow, but because there is “no deepness of earth,” the plants do not take root and are soon withered in the sun. The thorny ground allows the seed to grow, but the competing thorns choke the life out of the beneficial plants. The good ground receives the seed and produces much fruit. How does this agricultural parable apply to Freemasonry?

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Ode To The Way It Was – American Freemasonry And Operational Planning – Commentary

By John W. Bizzack, Ph.D. / April 28, 2023 /

Since at least March of this year, we have learned just how incompatible Masonic assemblies are with the new practice of social distancing. As the alarm increased across throughout the nation about the spread of the coronavirus, the Institution of Freemasonry was unceremoniously introduced to the true extent of the long- standing but often ignored reality that the culture and society of our nation does indeed directly affect the attitudes of existing and future generations of Freemasons as well as our practices. While our philosophies – the features that make up the Doctrine of Freemasonry – are not in jeopardy of changing because of the pandemic, it appears that, for some time to come, the delivery side of our Doctrine will not be able to build on the fraternal aspects of Freemasonry in the way it always has. We know this will seed change in our operations.

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