Wednesday, August 21, 2013

One Ring In The Tree

A couple of months ago I came across a question posed in one of the Freemason groups that I belong to on LinkedIn which asked “How many of you wear a Masonic ring at your professional work place?” A very simple yes or no type question but there is much more to it than that. It has been interesting following the responses that occasionally trickle into my inbox. Not surprisingly, the majority of the answers, like mine, have been in the affirmative but there has been a variety of stories behind the answers.

Obviously, all of the answers I have read have made me think about the reasons why I chose to wear mine. By proudly displaying my affiliation on my finger I am not just representing Freemasonry, my lodge, and myself I am honoring my family as the ring I wear twenty four hours a day, seven days a week is the same one my grandfather wore from the time he became a Mason to the day he died. It is a way to connect with my grandfather who I never knew as he passed only a month after I was born.

My grandfather was not a wealthy man in a financial sense so instead of a wedding band he wore his Masonic ring. While I don’t wear it as a wedding ring as my grandfather did, it still serves as a reminder of my commitment not just to my brothers but also to my family and my heritage. It is a tactile motivation to learn more about the craft and also to learn more about my family especially the ones I never had the chance to know.

It keeps me connected to the past, hopeful for the future, and pushes me to do what I can to make sure that I do something worth remembering with my life. It doesn’t have to be anything spectacular or influence the lives of many, as long as I accomplish something worth passing down I will be happy. I guess that’s why I am so motivated to keep this blog going day after day. It is not about getting a certain amount of views (although that is nice), it is not about making a profit (I don’t make anything), it is about providing a simple record of an ordinary life.

As I wrote about yesterday, the most commonly overlooked person on a family tree is the one that is compiling the information. I guess you could consider this blog as part of my genealogical record. Whereas we have documents, newspaper articles, family stories, and heirlooms such as my ring, I have my words and, like my grandfather’s ring, I hope to pass this on to future generations not only to keep the tree alive but to make sure it flourishes.