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Masonic Trial of Secular Freemasonry in Boise

On August 2, 2010, Boise Lodge #2, Ancient Free & Accepted Masons, of the Grand Lodge of Idaho, summoned Krispen Hartung to appear at a Masonic Trial on Friday, August 13 at 10am. The summons included an explanation of charges made against him, which had been submitted to the Worshipful Master of the Lodge on December 29, 2009.

The summons and explanation of charges are viewable or downloadable here, but in summary, Brother Hartung was charged for "unmasonic conduct", specifically that he had built and was a member of an "irregular" lodge, namely Praxis Lodge, a "Modern" lodge of the Grand Orient of the United States, who is in amity and regular communication with the Grand Orient of France.

The charges further state that Praxis Lodge is "irregular" because a) it does not require members to belief in God, b) it does not require the "Volume of the Sacred Law" (normally a Holy Bible) as an "indispensable part of the Furniture of the Lodge", and c) that it allows discussion of religion and politics in the Lodge. These three practices are described as in violation of the "Ancient Landmarks" of Freemasonry and of the Masonic Idaho Code and Digest.

In short, Praxis Lodge was deemed "irregular" because of its secular nature. This irregularity is based on the standards of the Grand Lodge of Idaho in opposition to the to the principle of Freedom of Conscience, which is a key principle of the Grand Orient of the United States and the Grand Orient of France, allowing freedom of speech, expression, and thought by all Freemasons.

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Comments

  • Greg 3 years ago

    And what was the outcome of the summons and trial?

  • Kris Hartung 3 years ago

    The trial is in the morning. I will provide a full report on teh outcome with my formal response to the charges.

  • Paul Roberts 3 years ago

    An interesting fork in the Masonic Road.

    It seems that Krispen requested a simple demit that was accepted. He then withdrew his request only to later reapply with a detailed justification that defaced the Ancient Landmarks. His 2nd request was was not answered, whereby he then sought support form the GL and was answered with these charges...(via http://praxislodge-gousa.blogspot.com/ )

    I don't know the outcome of the trail but it seems that the GL of ID would rather kick-out a member than let him leave gracefully... thereby setting an example.

    Virtually no Man knows what he is getting into when he knocks on The Crafts door and the belabored process of leaving a lodge usually reinforces the decision to leave (stated from experience). Here that dramatic reinforcement seems to be shame-by-trail.

    The most learned of lecturers prance and coach mid-degree negating their impact and Grand Masters play on their digital devices during our Work. IMHO there are profound reasons for these Landmarks that are never addressed. Masons everywhere are scrabbling to create an environment that offers Enlightenment, in part because routine has shuddered the fullness of Ancient Craft ritual. Routine has replaced ritual and virtually negated the profundity of The Work.

    Putting myself in the GL officers shoes, I assume that the Constitution and By-laws say that sufficient grounds to issue the demit were not offered but a burden a proof for excommunication was; therefore jurisprudence demands a trail.

    The Ancient Landmarks defaced by Praxis are the reason in themselves that this man seeks dis association. Lets face it, there are a few GL that don’t recognize PH Masonry.. I’m waving my shameful finger at YOU GL of LA, MS, AL, FL, GA, SC, TN, KY, AR, WV (via http://bessel.org/masrec/phamap.htm) So with or without pomp and circumstance.. a new era of Masonry is sprouting in ID and by definition it is at odds with the cherished customs of the GL of ID. The trail is just part of the ancient custom.

  • Anonymous 3 years ago

    The Secular Humanism was not the issue. At all. The fact Krispen broke the oaths he agreed to of his own free will and accord was the only real issue, as was read to him at the trial. He broke his word, and he was removed for his lack of integrity. He was removed at the trial for that lack of integrity.

  • Anonymous 3 years ago

    Krispen did appear to break the oaths, as they are written. But he did so, based on his argument, because those oaths are morally bankrupt and a breach of the freedom of conscience. What good is an oath it is violates a fundamental human right, namely freedom of thought? Grand Lodges have a history full of morally suspect behavior, including discriminating against blacks and Jews. If Krispen had been a black man, before the GL of Idaho recognized Prince Hall Freemasonry, and he had created a lodge without the GL consent, he could have very well been put on trial for unmasonic conduct. Th Grand Orient of France allows members regardless of race, religion, or creed. They have the moral upper hand here. GL lodges are in the dark ages and it is only a matter of time before they go instinct and are replaced by more progressive orders of Freemasonry.

  • Anonymous 3 years ago

    Now you are creating an argument different than Krispen's initial claims. The Grand Orient is known to discriminate against candidates based on their religious beliefs to this day, and is accused by some to display morally suspect behavior. This is all irrelevant to the claims Krispen is attempting here to make.

    Did Krispen say that he felt the GL displayed prejudice against people because they were Black or Jewish? No. If there was such a display, I am quite sure Crispen would not have missed the opportunity to take advantage of the information. There is nothing in the above article about racism or ill feelings toward people of the Hebrew faith. His claim that it is because of his Secular Humanism is simply a falsehood, and the records of the trail will display as much. To claim a falsehood to support a viewpoint is quite obviously morally bankrupt, as is attempting to misdirect away from what Crispen claims in the above article. It's all in black and white and in the accompanying charges.

    Krispen clearly knew what he was doing went against the rules of the GL. Period. If he had established a lodge considered regular in its operations he still would be violating the codes of the GL to which he agreed to. Krispen knew what the rules were. He chose to ignore them and go against his word. That is morally bankrupt and dishonest.

    The charges include questions of 'legitimacy of origin' concerning Praxis. A body created without the knowledge of the GL would be of questionable origin no matter how much the work agreed with the GL. Agree or disagree, those are the rules that Krispen agreed to on joining. If he changed his mind, he is freely within his rights to do so. It does not give him the right to continue being a member in a group whose rules he so apparently blatantly and dishonestly flouted for his own egotistical means.

  • Profile picture of bc
    bc 3 years ago

    I don't understand the desire to remain a member of the GL of iIaho or the Shrine. Itf something no longer works for you and you have found or founded something that is better (for you and those of like mind) why not just walk away and move on?

    It kind of reminds me of someone trying to maintain two jobs when one of the jobs really isn't paying the bills or worth getting up for in the morning anyway/

  • Profile picture of bc
    bc 3 years ago

    i agree that this has little or nothing to do with Bro. hartung's secular humanist worldview. It does have to do with the GL of Idaho and their requirements for membership.

    Like it or not as a private organization they are by law able to set their own standards for membership. Weather they be backwards and out of touch with today's humanity notwithstanding. Now, i have no reason to defend the mainstream nor do i have any reason to cheerlead for Modern Freemasonry as I am neither. Just point out the facts here folks.

  • Anonymous 3 years ago

    irregularity and the breaking of our oaths. what more does the GL need?
    "so mote it be"

  • Krispen Hartung 3 years ago

    I'll step in here. Yes, I joined a lodge of the GL of Idaho. It was not what I expected it to be, nor what it was communicated to me. So, rather than complaining about it and continuing to attend meetings, I did something about it. I joined a different order of Freemasonry that represented what I believed depicts the ideals of 18th century Freemasonry, and I started my own lodge, which is now thriving. I also requested a demit so that I could gracefully step out of the "Blue Lodge". I was talked out of it, because of the Shriners and other issues. Later, I requested the demit again, and this time I told them why. I meant no ill, I just wanted out. I stated this and was very civil and candid. My request was never acknowledge, but instead, after being in the dark for 7 months, I get a notice that I was being brought to trial for "unmasonic conduct", less than 2 weeks before the trial. Again, I wanted out long before this and was already doing my own thing, with no interest in the GL of Idaho. So I attend the trial and defended myself. And I remain steadfast in my defense, namely that there is a contradiction between an fraternity claiming a moral high ground and promoting the so-called betterment of humanity and of the character of men, while at the same time restricting freedom of conscience (thought and expression), which more or less teaches people to judge others for their beliefs and not their upright character. I find that puzzling to say the least. I used this argument against their definition of regularity, but also cited historical issues with the concept of regularity. Of course, I did not expect to convince them, as changing the concept of regularity with the GL is a long term prospect, not something that can be addressed in a 2 hour trial. But my main point was to provoke thought around the ethical implications and historical basis of the concept of regularity, based on the requirement for belief in God, the immortality of the soul, and use of the Bible in the lodge. I achieved my objective, as my case is being discussed by hundreds of masons all over the world (given how fast the word spread).

  • Anonymous 3 years ago

    You held membership in two Grand Bodies that did not hold recognition for each other. A house divided shall not stand. Your being, quote, "talked into it" by a fellow Brother belies the falsehood of your claim of thinking for yourself. You took an obligation to adhear to the cpnciets of the Fraternity, only to think that they in actuality didn't apply to yourself. I am 'Brotherly' to members of multiple jurisdictions, but we all recognize that we are not able, at this time, to sit in a closed Lodge together. This is not about anything but sour grapes, and the tar you are attempting to heap upon your 'former' Brothers is shameful. Better to reflect why you visited this upon yourself than to blame others. That would be a true sign of your 'spiritual' and 'intellectual' superiority. A shame really. You did yourself the greatest dis-service.

    {Are you are Thelemite, by any chance? They often defend their duplicitous nature in any cause to "gain knowledge" as well. In reality, the argument of moral relativity will do you more damage than good.}

    P.S. The Grand Lodge is ALSO secular thus the ban on discussion of politics and religion within the Lodge Room.

  • Anonymous 3 years ago

    The moral high ground is clear here. Brother Krispen holds it firmly in his grasp.

  • Anonymous 6 months ago

    This is nothing particularly special. Narcissists will always be narcissists. Guys like this will always think they have some new knowledge to offer that's superior to hundreds of years of collective knowledge. Big deal! Its just another guy who doesn't get it and has a platform! I like the Examiner, but if they keep giving dishonest butt-munches like this a platform, I may have to leave! Just saying. Just another guy who couldn't live with the rules of an organization, ranting. If you want to join an organization that lets you change everything about that organization to suite you personally, don't join an organization! Geeze! Disseminating patently false information certainly isn't an intellectual pursuit. It's an exercise in idiocy!

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