Museum of Freemasonry - Masonic Library

Respect for the law:

Freemasonry demands from its members a respect for the law of any country in which a man may work and live.


The principles of Freemasonry do not in any way conflict with

its members' duties as citizens, whether at work or at home or in public life, but on the contrary should strengthen them in fulfilling their private and public responsibilities.

Use of Membership:

A Freemason must not use his membership to promote his own or anyone else's business, professional or personal interests. This is made clear directly or by inference several times during a Freemason's early career so that no Freemason can pretend to be ignorant of it. A Freemason who transgresses this rule may be suspended from Masonic activities or even expelled.


Freemasonry should not be allowed to harm a man's family or other connections by taking too much of his time or his money or causing him to act in any other way against their interests.

Duty as a citizen:

A Freemason's duty as a citizen must always prevail over any obligation to other Freemasons, and any attempt to shield a Freemason who has acted dishonourably or unlawfully or to confer an unfair advantage on another Freemason is contrary to this prime duty.

Personal or business difficulties:

If it could be proved by evidence that any personal failure or business difficulty was attributable to 'Masonic influence', Masonic authority would take a serious view of the fact, as it would be contrary to the principles of Freemasonry.


* Freemasonry is not a secret society.

* Like many other societies, it regards some of its internal affairs as private matters for its members.

* There is no secret about its aims and principles. Copies of the constitutions and rules can be obtained from Masonic Centre by interested members of the public.

* The secrets of Freemasonry are concerned with its traditional modes of recognition. Its ceremonies are private.

* In ordinary conversation there is very little about Freemasonry which may not be discussed.

* On inquiry for acceptable reasons, Freemsons are free and will be proud to acknowledge their own membership.

This is the text of a leaflet published by the Board of General Purposes of the United Grand Lodge of England in 1987.