It’s been kind of a crazy period of time. Lately, I’ve been really stretching the limits of my 24-inch gauge. I am really enjoying it, but it’s not easy. I love pouring my efforts into all things, especially Masonry, but I definitely need to make sure I take personal time now and then.
I’ve done a less than stellar job of balancing friend groups. There’s more than a few friends who I think about every once in a while and realize, "wow, [X] and I haven’t hung out in a while." I’ve been pretty good about keeping the vast majority of my commitments, but the problem, I feel, now lies in actually arranging those commitments to begin with.
It’s very easy to keep commitments when they’re at lodge. That’s where I’m expected to be, and where I enjoy being. It is a breeze to be there! Having a central location to do stuff makes things very easy. I feel like right now we are also in a huge busy season right now. We’ve had a bunch of raisings and plan on having another one soon, followed by at least one passing, and at least two initiations. There are many brothers in need of instruction, and many ritual parts to be learned.
I feel like I arguably don’t sleep enough. I usually feel like I’m super busy, and that’s why I go to bed so late even though I have to wake up early. That also seems like a ridiculous excuse to try and cover up a severe lack of discipline. Maybe one of these days, I’ll figure it out.
On a more positive note, the Commandery Orders were incredible. This was last month, on the 15th. We had/were a bunch of candidates. I really enjoyed the Order of the Red Cross. The story behind it was really entertaining in both a serious and a light-hearted way. The Order of Malta kind of threw me for a loop, though. It felt like it was super-packed with information that just flew by at astronomical speeds. I will have to sit down with a copy of the ritual and a highlighter in order to properly "unpack" all of that.
I was privileged enough to be the exemplar candidate for the Order of the Temple. I have never experienced anything quite so mind-blowing in terms of ritual. There were parts where I had to keep myself from laughing, parts where I was deeply moved, and parts where my heart was pounding, ready to leap out of my chest in excitement and awe. I once heard the OOT described as "everything you ever thought a Masonic degree would ever be," and I have to say, that’s not wrong. Oddly, I wouldn’t describe it as "life-changing," as I have heard before. This experience profoundly resonated with emotions and convictions that I have held for a while now. There is no course in direction - if anything, there is now only fuel added to the fire in the engine. IN HOC.