Freemasonry or the Craft of the Free Masons. The fraternal order of Free and Accepted Masons is traced to the medieval and ancient builders who took up the tools of the building trade to used as metaphors. These metaphorical tools, such as the square and compasses, the plumb line, and the level, all are used to emblematically teach moral truths. It is around this system of symbols that Freemasonry has grown to become the largest worldwide brotherhood of men seeing to become better human beings.

One may ask what it means to become a better human being. We as a species of animal are unusual if not unique in being able to imagine ourselves behaving better than we do. Human beings have conscience and a sense of a higher state of spiritual being beyond the merely physical existence we have doe long associated with the body.

Today, practitioners of many healing arts and mystical paths speak of these "higher planes" of existence, and these in turn allude to higher degrees of enlightenment. The degrees of Free Masonry are degrees of learning and doing. They are lessons, dramatizations, enactments of abstract moral concepts. Yet, at the same time they are many-layered teachings about the very structure of mind, body and spirit.