UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF

THE LIBERAL GRAND LODGE OFFREEMASONS IN TURKEY

 

 

 

 

 

As the Liberal Grand Lodge of Freemasons in Turkey, we favour a masonic understanding that is contemporary, humanitarian, supporting freedom, peaceful, evolutionary and universal.

 

We don't deem any distinction or special privilege among masonic bodies, institutions, rites and systems, as long as they strive for achieving the universal aims of Freemasonry.

 

We adhere to the ideal of humanity that will be a means of peace and happiness for all humans and for all communities. This goal unites all masonic bodies throughout the world such as obediences, jurisdictions, federations, councils, chapters, ateliers, lodges or any others that are named differently. In this context, we disregard their preferred method of installation, their current mode of organisation and administration, and the rite or system that they choose.

 

As far as we're concerned, our mutual universal objective requires all masonic bodies to strive for achieving this ideal. Their members should consolidate individual efforts in this respect as well. Masonic bodies that contemplate likewise, perform endeavours conforming to this universal aim, and observe the prominent rules from time immemorial in getting constituted and organised are genuine and regular institutions of Universal Freemasonry. We keep our doors and hearts open to all of them and to their members.

 

As the Liberal Grand Lodge of Freemasons in Turkey, we work in the three symbolic degrees of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite by the guidance of our fundamental principles as LIBERTY, EQUALITY and FRATERNITY.

 

We acknowledge that masonic societies may have principles and working methods of their own. We believe that variety of these add affluence to Freemasonry in the universal extent. However we detest any behaviour presuming self-principles and working methods as being unique and unchangeable, thus alleging these on others.

 

We consider every masonic lodge working in the symbolic degrees of Freemasonry as equal to one another. Similarly, we consider obediences consisting of lodges also as being equal. We believe that the political, economical, cultural and historical differences between countries will not abolish this equality.

 

In order for a person to become a freemason, we find it a prerequisite as well as being sufficient to be

 

-         of mature age, having free-thought, earnest, sincere, and holding good moral conduct,

-         possessing adequate basic education in order to comprehend the tenets and teachings of Freemasonry, and

-         having a personality revealed to self-improvement.

 

We allow necessitating any further requirements in persons who may become a freemason to the self-perception of each institution that is concerned.

 

As the Liberal Grand Lodge of Freemasons in Turkey, we adjudge the attitude of considering discrimination among people due to their nation, race, language, religion, denomination, belief, sex, economical status, cultural characteristics and similar factors as being against the universal principles of Freemasonry.

 

We believe that, the way leading towards the universal ideal of humanity that purposes peace, happiness and fraternity of all human beings and all communities is the one that is apart from every sort of discrimination.

 

We think that this route passes through embracing each other with love and respect, and through perfection attained by uniting with tolerance. We look forward to seeing the reflections of such perfection in every activity that provides benefits to humanity.

As the Liberal Grand Lodge of Freemasons in Turkey, we regard it as one of the natural and inevitable requisites of human rights and obligations that everyone, whether man or woman, are equal with respect to the right of becoming a freemason. On behalf of the honour of humanity, we wish that contrary approaches in this respect change.

 

We consider it as imperative not to intervene in one’s religion, faith, belief peculiar to oneself or disbelief. We assert that intolerant approaches in this matter will cause quarrel, combat and hostility among persons and communities.

 

Therefore, during the meetings of our lodges, we place on the altar an open white book having empty sheets throughout.

 

We perceive that religions, beliefs, ethics, political and economical regimes or doctrines can be deliberated in lodges by an unprejudiced scientific and rational approach. We consider this as useful to us all in expanding our horizons of culture, as well as improving our knowledge, notions, and capabilities. However, in our lodges, we oppose assertion of biased opinions that are illogical, that deny scientific approach, and that hinder the evolutionary development of humanity.

 

Whatever the subject matter is, we look upon the action of alleging certain definite opinions or tendencies to individuals and communities as being against Freemasonry. We regard free transmission of freely generated thoughts to all people as an inevitable principle to be followed for the individual improvement of our brethren and sisters, as well as the institutional improvement of Freemasonry. Whatever is the subject matter, we disagree any concept or judgment as being definite, final or the absolute truth.

 

As the Liberal Grand Lodge of Freemasons in Turkey, we are aware of the fact that Freemasonry survived by protecting its genuine procedures and traditions perpetuated for centuries. Yet, we conceive its versatility in adopting itself to the present era that provided it to be always up-to-date. Therefore, the most basic tradition of Freemasonry is its ability to be in compliance with the current circumstances in the future as it was in the past and it is today. We believe that, all other traditions should be interpreted with respect to this basic one.

 

Instead of preserving those methods and traditions that had erosion in their meanings and validity, we are in favour of creative and progressive outlooks that don't conflict with our universal aims and principles. We regard the approach of trying these, putting those found as convenient into practice, giving chance to transform themselves into traditions as a necessity of the characteristics of Freemasonry for being up-to-date. We think that, partial or full resolution of any past method or tradition into a historical reminiscence depends on time as well as on the laws of evolution.

 

As the Liberal Grand Lodge of Freemasons in Turkey, we interpret "a freemason" as synonymous to "an exemplar human being who cross-examines oneself, improves continuously, tries to advance towards perfection, is useful to the entire humanity in addition to one's own family and nation, acts considerately for and protects the natural environment as much as the social milieu". We wish to share this understanding with all masonic institutions throughout the world.