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10 Disturbing Truths About the Free Masons

by Toby Oliva
fact checked by Rachel Jones

Freemasons are seen by society in a variety of ways. Some view them as a cult, a brotherhood, a secret society, or even a shadow government. It is said that there are currently millions of Freemasons currently (as many as six million, according to some reports). Due to their secret practices, finding concrete, provable information on them can be difficult.

The Freemasons are believed to have originated from stonemason guilds during the Middle Ages in England. Most major religions opposed them, but the secret brotherhood has continued to exist and evolve over the past three hundred years. This group is well known for its secrecy.

As secretive and mysterious as the Freemasons are, solid facts are known about them. And some of those are disturbing. Let’s explore 10 disturbing truths about the Freemasons.

Related: 10 Strange Societies You’ve Probably Never Heard Of

10 The Freemasons Made William Morgan Disappear

William Morgan (Part One): The Vanishing of William Morgan

William Morgan was born in America in the 1770s. After getting married late in life, moving to Canada, and returning to the United States, Morgan wished to join the Freemasons. Although there is no evidence of his association, Morgan claimed that he was previously a member of the Freemasons in Canada.

Being secretive and selective, local Freemason lodges did not want William Morgan to join. A “lodge” is not a building but a group of Freemasons in a particular area. Following repeated rejections from the local Freemasons, Morgan took to threats. He told them that he was going to publish a book sharing the secrets of the Freemasons, apparently with the title Illustrations of Masonry.

Shortly after this announcement, Morgan was harassed. He was arrested, and someone attempted to burn down his business. Then, William Morgan disappeared altogether. Some theorize that he was paid by the Freemasons to leave. Others speculate that he was killed by them. The only thing we know for sure is that Morgan was never seen again.

9 The Anti Masonic Political Party

The Birth of the U.S. Political Convention in 1831| Retro Report

American citizens are well aware of our two-party political system. Throughout the history of the nation, two parties have generally dominated political discourse. However, there have been some attempts to start third parties.

One such attempt came as a response to the fear of Freemasons. The disappearance and assumed death of William Morgan was widely associated with the Freemasons. Eventually, this led the way to the founding of the Anti-Masonic Party. The goal of this political party was to stop Freemasons from acquiring too much power and political capital. The Anti-Masonic Party is seen by historians as the first third party in United States history.

Since the party was founded on basically only one principle, it faded in popularity. Nonetheless, the fact that an entire political party was founded on stopping Freemasons is just one more disturbing truth about this secret society.

8 The Oldest Brotherhood in History

Freemasons formed from a group of stonemasons, like a guild. During the Middle Ages, there were many stonemasons, and it was seen as an important occupation due to the many buildings, such as cathedrals being built.

Incredibly, due in some part to their secretive practices, this brotherhood has lasted all the way until modern times. Reportedly, their membership numbers have suffered in recent years, which may be due to changing beliefs in society. Freemasonry is set up as a brotherhood or a fraternity. In other words, most lodges and Freemasons at large will not allow females as members. This suggests that this secret society is built on sexism.

7 The Secretive Freemason Handshake(s)

Enter the secret world of the Freemasons

A common association with Freemasons (and secret societies in general) is secret handshakes. In the early days of Freemasonry, this would have been a useful tool to connect with other Masons from different areas of the world.

This practice appears to still be in place today. In reporting from, Kate Buck was able to connect and interview Dr. David Staples, the Deputy Grand Master of Ceremonies for the United Grand Lodge of England. According to Staples, membership became more secretive during the Second World War. The practice of secret handshakes remains. According to Staples, their secret handshake is “forbidden” to use outside of Masonic circles.

Staples also referenced a disciplinary system to anyone who abused this handshake. Staples went on to say, “We do not tolerate people talking about it in any way, and in the 22 years that I have been a Mason, nobody has given me the handshake outside of their Masonic Lodges.” This society is so secretive that even a simple secret handshake can get a member “disciplined” is disturbing indeed.

6 Symbols of Freemasonry

Freemason Symbols and Secrets: Part 1

Just like their secret handshakes and secret memberships, Freemasons also make use of secretive symbols. There are a number of different symbols that are now associated with this group. One such symbol is the Masonic Blazing Star. This symbol consists of a gold, five-pointed star with a lighter gold G in the middle, all contained within a white circle.

According to, the symbol intends to “Remind us of that awful period when God delivered the two tablets of stone, containing the ten commandments to his faithful servant Moses on Mount Sinai when the rays of His divine glory shone so bright that none could behold it without fear.” This is a bleak symbol to uphold and one even more fearsome to emanate.

5 Origins of the Freemasons

Origins of the Freemasons

Because this society was started so long ago, the origins of the Freemasons remain a bit unclear. However, there are many theories as to how the secret society originated.

Some scholars claim that Freemasons descended from the builders of the First Temple. There is little evidence to back these claims, however. Another claim that is rarely supported by proof is the association of the Freemasons and the Illuminati. Despite the Illuminati and Freemasons both being elite secret societies, scholars have been unable to find a clear, provable connection.

While the exact origin of Freemasonry is as yet undermined, it is clear that they were an important political force in early America and around the same time in Europe. It appears that their influence has faded over time, but the mystery behind their origin has not. Mystery breeds the unknown, and this can be bad. A society bent on remaining secretive can accomplish all kinds of dark deeds without penalty.

4 Some Famous Freemasons

Famous Freemasons

Some of the most influential people throughout history have been associated with Freemasons. In many cases, their memberships in the Masonic society are completely confirmed. Musicians, artists, politicians, and other influential figures (even 14 United States Presidents) were all part of this secret society.

Some of the famous members include:

  • Buzz Aldrin, astronaut, second man on the moon
  • George Washington, first president of the United States of America
  • James Monroe, founding father and 5th president of United States of America
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, one of the most famous composers in history
  • Duke Ellington, famed jazz musician
  • Benjamin Franklin, noted inventor and founding father of the United States of America
  • Winston Churchill, English Prime Minister during World War II
  • Voltaire, renowned French philosopher
  • Edward VII, King of England

It is disturbing how influential some of the members of this list are. This is only a sampling of some of the important members, however. There are many other historical figures that are suspected of being Freemasons but not confirmed. We don’t know who is loyal to this society. This is scary considering our world can be negatively influenced by those we think we can trust.

3 Requirements to Become a Freemason

How Do you Become a Freemason? How to Join

The list of famous Masons above may have you thinking, how did those people have anything in common? What is required to join the Freemasons? Due to all the secrecy surrounding the fraternity, it is impossible to be completely sure what the requirements were to join hundreds of years ago. Nevertheless, there is a commonly shared group of requirements or rules established by the Freemasons.

According to Wikipedia, the most commonly shared rules are from the United Grand Lodge in England and were shared back in 1929. The rules are:

  • The candidate must be a man who comes by his own free will.
  • The candidate must believe in a “Supreme Being.”
  • The candidate must meet the age qualifications (anywhere from 18-25 years old).
  • The candidate must be judged as being of good morals and reputation.
  • The candidate needs to be of sound mind and body.
  • The candidate must be “born free.”
  • The candidate must obtain character references, including from current Freemasons.

Many of these qualifications are clearly antiquated and discriminatory. However, this is the currently shared list of requirements seen most often. The fact that the rules mention members must be a man and able-bodied is disturbing enough on their own. The mention of being “born free” just sends a chill through my bones.

2 Conspiracy Theories Associated with the Freemasons

Is Freemasonry a Cult?

Due to its secretive nature, Freemasons are regularly associated with a number of different conspiracies. They are associated with the New World Order conspiracy, which alleges a shadow government is running the entire world. Some believers in this conspiracy connect the New World Order with Freemasonry. Other conspiracies connect the Freemasons to the Illuminati or the Knights Templar, though the evidence for these conspiracies is flimsy at best.

Wikipedia states that these theories are all based on the following assumptions, which may or may not be correct. They are as follows:

  1. Freemasonry is its own religion, following a Masonic God. The religion runs contrary to many major religions, specifically Christianity.
  2. Most Freemasons are unaware of hidden, secretive ruling bodies within their organization. These ruling bodies govern not only the lodges but aspects of the government as well.
  3. Freemasons are all unified under a worldwide body. In other words, the entirety of Freemasons is unified under a single leadership.

While some of these assumptions may not be correct, it is hard to prove one way or another because of the fraternity’s ultra-secret practices. A religion that will not disclose what they fully believe in is one to be wary of.

1 Who Is Allowed to Participate in Freemasonry?

The secret world of female Freemasons – BBC News

According to tradition, Freemasons must meet all of the qualities listed above. They must be able-bodied, born free, religious, and a man. However, as time has passed and society at large has become more accepting, these rules have begun to shift. Freemason organizations still do not typically admit women or atheists of any kind. Separate branches of Freemasonry have developed to serve other populations. Women are generally not accepted as members; however, there is a separate, connected organization by the name of “The Order of the Eastern Sun.”

Similarly, as African-Americans were not traditionally admitted, instead of being accepted into “Grand Lodges,” they joined “Prince Halls.” A Maryland Mason named Paul Bessel who wrote a book on Freemasonry says, “There are, I’m sorry to say, some Masons who are racists. But the vast majority don’t feel that way,” according to

The decision of who is and who is not admitted is made at a local lodge level in most cases. also notes that Grand Lodges and Prince Hall Groups recognize each other as members in 38 states and the District of Columbia. It is unfortunate but hardly unexpected to find bigotry and discrimination at the heart of this disturbing organization based on its mysterious history.

fact checked by Rachel Jones