I bring you good tidings of great joy, for ALL the people.
Sunday, December 25, 2011
Friday, December 16, 2011
I now bid a fond farewell to the greatest game I ever played, Star Wars Galaxies. The servers shut down about twenty minutes ago, the end of an era -- eight long years. Just memories now. To everyone who had anything to do with that game, the developers, coders, artists, SOE, Lucas Arts, the customer service reps, community service people and above all the players, good bye and May the Force be with you. Always.
(Image: My main character, R'and Ego and his wife, Jayn Carter on Tatooine in front of Mos Eisley Cantina as the galaxies are about to go dark.)
Sunday, December 11, 2011
Tuesday, December 6, 2011
Sunday, December 4, 2011
Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Monday, November 21, 2011
Saturday, October 22, 2011
"I really think that living is the process of going from complete certainty to complete ignorance."
(Made a Mason at Sight by the Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of the District of Columbia.)
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
"In a monarchy, the king and his family are the country; in a republic it is the common voice of the people. Each of you, for himself, by himself and on his own responsibility, must speak. And it is a solemn and weighty responsibility, and not lightly to be flung aside at the bullying of pulpit, press, government, or the empty catch-phrases of politicians. Each must for h...imself alone decide what is right and what is wrong, and which course is patriotic and which isn't. You cannot shirk this and be a man. To decide it against your convictions is to be an unqualified and inexcusable traitor, both to yourself and to your country, let men label you as they may. If you alone of all the nation shall decide one way, and that way be the right way according to your convictions of the right, you have done your duty by yourself and by your country — hold up your head! You have nothing to be ashamed of.
Only when a republic's life is in danger should a man uphold his government when it is in the wrong. There is no other time."
(Polar Star Lodge No. 79, A.F.& A.M., St. Louis, Missouri.)
(Suspended for non-payment of dues and later reinstated April 24, 1867. Demitted October 1867, but recorded as having visited Carson City Lodge U.D. in February and March 1868.)
Saturday, October 8, 2011
Thursday, October 6, 2011
Wednesday, October 5, 2011
James Bruce was a Scottish traveller and travel writer who spent more than a dozen years in North Africa and Ethiopia, where he traced the origins of the Blue Nile.
Bruce also brought back to Europe a select collection of Ethiopian manuscripts. "They opened up entirely new vistas for the study of Ethiopian languages and placed this branch of Oriental scholarship on a much more secure basis," writes Ullendorff. "It is not known how many MSS. reached Europe through his endeavours, but the present writer is aware of at least twenty-seven, all of which are exquisite examples of Ethiopian manuscript art. Bruce presented a fine and specially prepared copy of the Book of Enoch to Louis XV in Paris." While most of these manuscripts are in Ge'ez, one notable exception is a version of the Song of Songs written in Gafat, a language which Ullendorff states "is known to us only from this manuscript."
Monday, October 3, 2011
Affliction's sons are brothers in distress; A brother to relieve, how exquisite the bliss!
The Master's Apron
Ther's mony a badge that's unco braw;
Wi' ribbon, lace and tape on;
Let kings an' princes wear them a' —
Gie me the Master's apron!
The honest craftsman's apron,
The jolly Freemason's apron,
Be he at hame, or roam afar,
Before his touch fa's bolt and bar,
The gates of fortune fly ajar,
`Gin he but wears the apron!
For wealth and honor, pride and power
Are crumbling stanes to base on;
Eternity suld rule the hour,
And ilka worthy Mason!
Each Free Accepted Mason,
Each Ancient Crafted Mason.
Then, brithers, let a halesome sang
Arise your friendly ranks alang!
Guidwives and bairnies blithely sing
To the ancient badge wi' the apron string
That is worn by the Master Mason!
(St. David's Lodge No. 174, Tarbolton)
"Frontiersmen good and bad, gunmen as well as inspired prophets of the future, have been my camp companions. Thus, I know the country of which I am about to write as few men now living have known it."
(Raised in Platte Valley Lodge No. 15, Nebraska)
Sunday, October 2, 2011
Saturday, October 1, 2011
"An irresistible passion that would induce me to believe in innate ideas, and the truth of prophecy, has decided my career. I have always loved liberty with the enthusiasm which actuates the religious man with the passion of a lover, and with the conviction of a geometrician. On leaving college, where nothing had displeased me more than a state of dependance, I viewed the greatness and the littleness of the court with contempt, the frivolities of society with pity, the minute pedantry of the army with disgust, and oppression of every sort with indignation. The attraction of the American revolution transported me suddenly to my place. I felt myself tranquil only when sailing between the continent whose powers I had braved, and that where, although our arrival and our ultimate success were problematical, I could, at the age of nineteen, take refuge in the alternative of conquering or perishing in the cause to which I had devoted myself.
o Letter to the Bailli de Ploën, as quoted in Recollections of the Private Life of General Lafayette (1836) by Jules Germain Cloquet, Vol. I, p. 24
Thursday, September 29, 2011
Wednesday, September 28, 2011
"Our attitudes control our lives. Attitudes are a secret power working twenty-four hours a day, for good or bad. It is of paramount importance that we know how to harness and control this great force."
(Munn Lodge No. 190, New York)
Monday, September 26, 2011
Sunday, September 25, 2011
Saturday, September 24, 2011
"Freedom to learn is the first necessity of guaranteeing that man himself shall be self-reliant enough to be free. Such things did not need as much emphasis a generation ago, but when the clock of civilization can be turned back by burning libraries, by exiling scientists, artists, musicians, writers and teachers; by disbursing universities, and by censoring news and literature and art; an added burden, an added burden is placed on those countries where the courts of free thought and free learning still burn bright. If the fires of freedom and civil liberties burn low in other lands they must be made brighter in our own. If in other lands the press and books and literature of all kinds are censored, we must redouble our efforts here to keep them free. If in other lands the eternal truths of the past are threatened by intolerance we must provide a safe place for their perpetuation."
(Holland Lodge No. 8, New York)
Friday, September 23, 2011
"A Mason’s ways are
A type of existence,
And his persistence
... Is as the days are
Of men of the world.
The future hides in it
Good hap or sorrow,
We pass through it-
Naught there abides in it
Daunting us- onward.
And silent, before us,
Veiled the dark portal,
Goal of all mortal;
Stars silent rest over us,
Graves under us silent.
But heard are the voices-
Voices of the sages
Of the world and the ages-
Choose well, your choice is
Brief, but yet endless.
Here eyes do regard you
In eternity’s stillness,
Here is all fullness,
Ye brave, to reward you,
Work and despair not."
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
(Lodge Amelie, Weimar)
Wednesday, September 21, 2011
Tuesday, September 20, 2011
"One hour of life, crowded to the full with glorious action, and filled with noble risks, is worth whole years of those mean observances of paltry decorum, in which men steal through existence, like sluggish waters through a marsh, without either honour or observation." Sir Walter Scott
Scott was the first English-language author to have a truly international career in his lifetime, with many contemporary readers in Europe, Australia, and North America. His novels and poetry are still read, and many of his works remain classics of both English-language literature and of Scottish literature. Famous titles include 'Ivanhoe,' 'Rob Roy,' 'The Lady of The Lake,' 'Waverley,' 'The Heart of Midlothian' and 'The Bride of Lammermoor.'
(Canongate Kilwinning from Leith/St. David)
Monday, September 19, 2011
"I believe in God who made of one blood all races that dwell on earth. I believe that all men, black and brown and white, are brothers, varying through Time and Opportunity, in form and gift and feature, but differing in no essential particular, and alike in soul and in the possibility of infinite development. " W. E. B. Du Bois
"William Edward Burghardt Du Bois (February 23, 1868 – August 27, 1963) was an intellectual leader in the United States as a sociologist, historian, civil rights activist, Pan-Africanist, author, and editor. Biographer David Levering Lewis wrote, "In the course of his long, turbulent career, W. E. B. Du Bois attempted virtually every possible solution to the problem of twentieth-century racism—scholarship, propaganda, integration, national self-determination, human rights, cultural and economic separatism, politics, international communism, expatriation, third world solidarity." ~wikipedia
(Bro W. E. B. DuBois was made a Prince Hall Freemason December 12, 1910 when initiated into Widow Son Lodge #1, MWPHGL of CT at New Haven. According to information gathered from "Great Black Men of Masonry: Qualitative Black Achievers who were Freemasons” by Joseph Mason Andrew Cox; 1987 ed., Dr W. E. B. DuBois was a Thirty-Third Degree Mason, Ancient & Accepted Scottish of Freemasonry, PHA, Southern Jurisdiction, USA.)
Sunday, September 18, 2011
"That's all folks!" Mel Blanc
Melvin Jerome "Mel" Blanc (May 30, 1908 – July 10, 1989) was an American voice actor and comedian. Although he began his nearly six-decade-long career performing in radio commercials, Blanc is best remembered for his work with Warner Bros. during the "Golden Age of American animation" (and later for Hanna-Barbera television productions) as the voice of such well-known characters as Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Sylvester the Cat, Tweety Bird, Foghorn Leghorn, Yosemite Sam, Wile E. Coyote, Woody Woodpecker, Barney Rubble, Mr. Spacely, Speed Buggy, Captain Caveman, Heathcliff, Speedy Gonzales, Tom Cat, and hundreds of others. Having earned the nickname “The Man of a Thousand Voices,” Blanc is regarded as one of the most influential people in the voice-acting industry.
At the time of his death, it was estimated that 20 million people heard his voice every day. ~wikipedia
Saturday, September 17, 2011
"Liberty is a word which, according as it is used, comprehends the most good and the most evil of any in the world. Justly understood it is sacred next to those which we appropriate in divine adoration; but in the mouths of some it means anything, which enervate a necessary government; excite a jealousy of the rulers who are our own choice, and keep society in confu...sion for want of a power sufficiently concentered to promote good.
Oliver Ellsworth, Reference: Essays on the Constitution of the United States, Ford, ed. (146); original The Connecticut Courant
Oliver Ellsworth was an American lawyer and politician, a revolutionary against British rule, a drafter of the United States Constitution, and the third Chief Justice of the United States. While at the Federal Convention, Ellsworth moved to strike the word National from the motion made by Edmund Randolph of Virginia. Randolph had moved successfully to call the government the National Government of United States. Ellsworth moved that the government should continue to be called the United States Government. -wikipedia
Friday, September 16, 2011
"Any composer who is gloriously conscious that he is a composer must believe that he receives his inspiration from a source higher than himself."
"Governmental aid is a drawback rather than an assistance, as, although it may facilitate in the routine of artistic production, it is an impediment to the development of true artistic genius."
John Philip Sousa
Thursday, September 15, 2011
It’s Great To Be A Freemason
by Danny Thomas, 33°
The years found me an admirer of the great work the Masonic Order has been doing in making this world a better place for all of us to live. I have, for a long time, desired to be one of you and rejoice that now I can proudly boast of my membership in one of the world’s greatest fraternal associations. I am grateful for those individuals who have in quiet ways motivated me in my work on behalf of unfortunate children. I am grateful for the high moment in my life when the doors of Freemasonry were opened to me. Since then I have had many pleasant times of fraternal fellowship and even opportunities for service in the work of many branches of Freemasonry.
Our Order, for now I can say, "our order," teaches, "the brotherhood of man under the fatherhood of God" and this is great! The world needs so desperately to discover the value of this great truth in human relationships and world affairs. It is also a truth that will motivate men and women to continue to explore avenues of service and areas of common concerns in order to restore a measure of sanity to the madness of our day and to enrich the quality of life for all peoples everywhere. Now I join hands and heart with you in all your endeavors of philanthropy and say we must not slacken our efforts "to do good to all," especially those with needs that will not be met if we fail in our common task of service to humanity.
On stage, screen, platform, and in private life I have always sought to bring a smile to the face of others and put a little joy in their lives. I am grateful now for the larger opportunity which is mine to adopt the tenets of Freemasonry as my own and hopefully be able to have a small part in spreading Masonry’s message of love and caring to a larger audience, for wherever I go, I will be proud to tell others of my work and concern in behalf of all that you are doing, unselfishly, for others.
Someone once asked me, "why did I want to be a Mason," and my reply was: "Because Masons care for those who cannot care for themselves." The Shriners have always been a favorite of mine because of their work for crippled and burned children. Also I am excited about efforts proposed at the recent Conference of Grand Masters in regard to drug abuse among young people.
It is great to be a Freemason! I am proud of what we are doing. I shall assist in every way I can our work of mercy, and it doesn't hurt to be a Brother with a "big mouth and lots of television cameras" to help get the message across. Masons are people of goodwill who want to "keep our kids alive" and we are doing this throughout the world. Our purpose is noble and humanitarian. Our labors will be crowned with success, for as Freemasons we will bring to our mission the best we have, regardless of what it demands from us in the way of sacrifice and service. We will make sure that in the tomorrows, life will be better for those who suffer today.
I was a Freemason in my heart long before I was accepted as a member in this great Fraternity. I was an outsider but now I am one of you, and the remaining years of my life will be spent in seeking in some small way to say to all: "Thank you for making me a Freemason." I want always to make you laugh but I trust that I will also make you care and that now, together, we will put melody in the heart of the world that will sing of a better life for all people. The task challenges us to larger efforts and higher goals that will demand from all of us the best we have to make a better life for others. My promise to Freemasons everywhere is that I will give the task my best!
(Reprinted from the October 1990 Fresno Scottish Rite Bulletin with credit to Kansas Masonic Bulletin.)
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
"Education makes a people easy to lead, but difficult to drive; easy to govern but impossible to enslave." Henry Brougham, 1st Baron Brougham and Vaux (1778–1868)
Abolitionist and founder of "The Edinburgh Review"
(Raised in Fortrose Lodge, Stornway, Scotland)
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
"People say we ought not to allow ourselves to be drawn into a theoretical antagonism between Nazidom and democracy; but the antagonism is here now. It is this very conflict of spiritual and moral ideas which gives the free countries a great part of their strength. You see these dictators on their pedestals, surrounded by the bayonets of their soldiers and the truncheons of their police. On all sides they are guarded by masses of armed men, cannons, aeroplanes, fortifications, and the like — they boast and vaunt themselves before the world, yet in their hearts there is unspoken fear. They are afraid of words and thoughts; words spoken abroad, thoughts stirring at home — all the more powerful because forbidden — terrify them. A little mouse of thought appears in the room, and even the mightiest potentates are thrown into panic. They make frantic efforts to bar our thoughts and words; they are afraid of the workings of the human mind. Cannons, airplanes, they can manufacture in large quantities; but how are they to quell the natural promptings of human nature, which after all these centuries of trial and progress has inherited a whole armoury of potent and indestructible knowledge? " Sir Winston Churchill
(Studholme Alliance Lodge No. 1591, Rosemary Lodge No. 2851.)
Note: The Churchill Society claims he resigned from his Lodges in 1912.)
Sunday, September 11, 2011
A day there was when a serpent struck a sleeping giant, a giant who will sleep no more. Soon shall the serpent know the wrath of the mighty, the vengeance of the just.
A day there was when Liberty lost her heart -- and found the strength within her soul." Stan Lee
Saturday, September 10, 2011
If the First Amendment means anything, it means that a state has no business telling a man, sitting alone in his house, what books he may read or what films he may watch.
Coal Creek Lodge No. 88, Tulsa, Oklahoma PHA)