A lodge is the community of brothers, but often also the physical meeting place (or lodge temple) of a ritual assembly of a mystery society. Several Lodges in a group are combined to form a Grand Lodge and are more or less autonomously managed by it.
Lodges – The individual lodges are run by “masters” – the exact designation of these persons varies depending on the order and society. These Lodge Masters are subordinate to the so-called Grand Master of the Grand Lodge.
The members of a Lodge call each other brother or sister. This brotherhood is also an essential characteristic of the Lodge, which is intended to train a fraternal relationship with fellow human beings – regardless of their origin, status, experience or knowledge. This is also why the brothers come from different social classes and professions. Mostly, however, fraternal orders are divided into male and female lodges. This separation of sexes enables the respective lodges to be refuges of special value.
Entry to a lodge begins with an interview in which the qualification of the candidate is determined. If the candidate proves to be worthy, he or she is initiated into the order in an initiation ritual. The path leads from apprentice to fellow craft to master. Depending on the order or society, there may be different degrees and levels.
A lodge is structured similarly to an association in administrative terms: that is, in addition to the lodge master, there are also other positions that perform administrative or ceremonial tasks. These persons have different names and assignments depending on the society.
The Lodge meets at frequent intervals for ritual work. These meetings can take place weekly, fortnightly, monthly or, under certain circumstances, quarterly or annually – this can differ greatly depending on the order or society. The participation of the brothers in these lodge convocations is generally obligatory.
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