Why Do Masons Use Symbols

Masonry, also known as Freemasonry, is a fraternal organisation that dates back centuries and has members all over the world. One of the main aspects of the organisation is its use of symbols to represent its core values and beliefs. These symbols are used by Masons to help them in their journey towards self-improvement and understanding. Masonry has a rich history intertwined with symbolism, and the use of these symbols has helped to shape the organisation into what it is today. Masonic symbols are a variety of symbols that have been used in Freemasonry for centuries. These symbols are often seen on the aprons, rings, and jewelry that Freemasons wear. Some of the more popular Masonic symbols include the Square and Compass, the All-Seeing Eye, the Hourglass, and the Sun and Moon. Each symbol has its own unique meaning and is used to represent different aspects of Freemasonry.

History of Freemasonry

Freemasonry is an ancient fraternal organization founded during the late 16th and early 17th centuries. The organization was formed to promote moral and spiritual development among its members. Freemasonry has a long and illustrious history, with its earliest records dating back to the 1600s. Throughout its history, Freemasonry has been associated with many influential figures, such as George Washington and Benjamin Franklin, as well as a wide variety of symbols and rituals. Freemasonry has had a significant impact on the development of the western world, particularly in terms of its influence on politics and religion.


Freemasonry is steeped in ritualistic traditions that have been passed down through generations. These rituals are designed to teach moral lessons to those initiated into the organization, often through symbolic storytelling. The rituals include symbolic handshakes, passwords and other secret signs that identify one Mason from another. These rituals also involve elaborate ceremonies which involve swearing oaths of secrecy upon initiation into the Lodge or membership organization.


Freemasonry is well known for its use of symbolism throughout its history. These symbols are used to convey various ideas or concepts, such as unity or brotherhood. Common symbols used by Masons include the compass and square (which symbolize balance), the all-seeing eye (which symbolizes divine watchfulness), and the letter G (which stands for geometry). Other symbols used by Masons include a variety of geometric shapes such as triangles, circles, hexagons, stars, and more.

Influence on Society

Freemasonry has had an undeniable influence on society throughout its long history. Its ideals have inspired many influential figures in politics, science, literature, philosophy, and other fields. Its teachings have also provided a framework for many societies around the world to develop their own systems of morality and justice. Today Freemasonry continues to be active in many countries around the world providing charitable works for those less fortunate members of society.

Different Types of Masonic Symbols

Masonry is a society with a rich tradition and history, and its symbols are a part of that tradition. Masonic symbols are an important part of the fraternity, which has been used for centuries to convey messages of friendship, loyalty, trust, and brotherhood. Masonic symbolism is found in the Lodges, in the rituals, and in many artifacts related to Freemasonry. The most common symbols include the Square and Compass, the All-Seeing Eye, the Sun and Moon, the Pillar of Strength, and the Five Pointed Star.

The Square and Compass are probably the most recognizable symbol associated with Freemasonry. This symbol represents morality and ethical behavior as outlined by Masonry’s teachings. It also represents balance as each point on a compass is equal distance from one another. The All-Seeing Eye symbolizes God’s watchful eye over us all; it is also believed to represent spiritual enlightenment. The Sun and Moon represent dualism; they represent opposites but also signify unity in their combined form.

The Pillar of Strength symbolizes strength in numbers; it represents the power of unity between members of Masonry. The Five Pointed Star is associated with many different meanings but most commonly has five points representing faith, hope, charity, truth and justice – virtues that Masonry promotes among its members. These symbols are used throughout Masonic Lodge ceremonies as well as on rings or other items belonging to Masons.

Other symbols associated with Masonry are the Blazing Star – which signifies divine guidance – as well as various animals such as eagles or lions which represent courage or strength. These animals may be depicted holding tools such as hammers or compasses that represent skillful workmanship or good building practices. Other objects such as globes may be used to signify world peace while swords may be used to represent justice or honor among Masons.

Masonic symbolism has been used for centuries to convey messages of friendship, loyalty and brotherhood between members of freemasonry worldwide. These symbols can be seen throughout lodges around the world in various forms ranging from artwork to jewelry to architecture. Although there are many interpretations of these symbols they remain a reminder of masonry’s commitment to morality and virtue for its members.

Shapes and Colors in Masonic Symbols

Masonic symbols are composed of shapes and colors that are used to convey different meanings. The most common shapes found in Masonic symbols are the square, compass, triangle, circle, and pentagram. These shapes have a deep symbolic significance to Masons and have been used for centuries as part of their rituals and ceremonies. The colors associated with these symbols also have their own special significance. Blue is the most common color used in Masonic symbolism, representing truth, constancy, loyalty, wisdom, harmony, and trustworthiness. Red symbolizes courage and strength while white stands for purity and innocence. Green is often used as a symbol of hope and renewal. Gold symbolizes strength and power while silver stands for peace and prosperity. Each color has its own unique meaning to Masons that helps convey their beliefs in a powerful way.

Masonic symbols are also often found on clothing or jewelry worn by members of the fraternity as a way to show their allegiance to the organization. Many of these items feature intricate patterns or designs that incorporate several of the aforementioned shapes and colors in order to communicate an idea or message. By looking at these items one can gain insight into what Masons believe in and how they express it through symbolism.

How Do Masons Use Symbols?

Freemasonry is a fraternal organisation that uses ritual and symbols to teach moral and ethical lessons. Through symbols, Freemasons use allegories to explain the values of the fraternity and to illustrate moral truths. Masonic symbols are used in rituals, lectures, and other Masonic activities to convey ideas and teachings. Symbols are also used to create an atmosphere of reverence in which members can contemplate ideas of a higher nature.

The most common Masonic symbol is the square and compasses; this symbol has many interpretations, but Freemasons generally view it as a reminder of their duty to serve God and their fellow man. Other Masonic symbols include the letter G, an all-seeing eye, a sunburst surrounded by stars, an open Bible with a set of compasses on top, and the three interlaced triangles known as the Triple Tau.

Each symbol has multiple meanings that can be interpreted differently depending on perspective and context. For example, the compass can represent members’ commitment to living life within ethical boundaries while the square can represent members’ obligation to be honest with themselves and others. The letter G stands for God or geometry; it is also often interpreted as representing knowledge or perfection. The all-seeing eye is seen as a reminder of God’s watchfulness over human actions while the sunburst surrounded by stars can be seen as representing divine guidance or providence.

Symbols are powerful tools for conveying moral truths; they provide an easy way for members to remember important lessons they’ve learned through Masonic ritual or lectures. By using symbols in their rituals, Freemasons are able to convey complex concepts quickly and effectively without relying on long explanations or speeches. Symbols also help create an atmosphere of reverence that allows members time for contemplation of higher ideals during meetings or gatherings.

The Meaning Behind Masonic Symbolism

Masonic symbolism is an important part of the history and tradition of Freemasonry. Symbols are used to represent various concepts, beliefs, and values that Freemasons hold dear. The symbolism used in Freemasonry is often drawn from Biblical sources, as well as from ancient Greek and Roman mythology. The use of symbols is also an integral part of the Masonic rituals and ceremonies that take place in Masonic Lodges around the world.

Masonic symbols are used to convey a variety of meanings, including concepts such as morality, justice, truth, knowledge, wisdom, strength, loyalty, honor and integrity. These concepts are represented by a variety of symbols which include the square and compasses, the all-seeing eye, the beehive and the letter “G”. Each symbol has its own individual meaning and significance within Masonry.

The square and compasses are perhaps the most widely recognized symbols associated with Freemasonry. The two tools represent different aspects of moral development – the square representing morality and justice; while the compasses represent truth and knowledge. Together they symbolize balance between these two important virtues in life. The letter “G” which sits atop the square and compasses is believed to stand for God or Geometry – two things which were held in high regard by Masons during their formative years in England during the 1700s.

The all-seeing eye is another important Masonic symbol which has been associated with Freemasonry since its inception. It is thought to represent God’s omniscience – his all-knowing watchfulness over us – as well as his divine guidance over our lives. The beehive is also a commonly seen Masonic symbol which represents industry – one of those virtues which Masons believe should be practiced by all men so that they can build strong foundations for both their personal lives as well as their communities at large.

Apart from these four common symbols associated with Masonry there are many others such as pillars representing strength; anchors representing hope; hearts representing love; swords representing justice; eagles representing courage; torches representing enlightenment; stars representing guidance; keys representing knowledge; roses representing secrecy among others who each play a role in conveying a certain message or meaning within Masonry.

In essence, Masonic symbolism serves to remind Masons of their core values and principles while also providing them with an opportunity to reflect upon those same values each time they encounter any of these symbolic elements during their meetings or rituals at their local Lodge or other Masonic gatherings around the world.

Symbolism Important to Freemasonry

Symbolism is an integral part of Freemasonry, as it serves as a visual representation of its teachings and values. Symbols are used to convey the beliefs and principles of the fraternity, which are often difficult to express in words. Symbols can also help to remind Masons of their obligations and encourage them to strive for higher moral standards. Additionally, symbols can be used as a form of communication between Masons who may not speak the same language. By understanding and recognizing the symbols used by Freemasons, they have a common language that transcends any boundaries or differences that may exist between them.

Masonic symbols also serve as a way for members to identify one another and are often found in Masonic lodges and other places where Masons gather. These symbols may include letters, words, pictures, objects, or even handshakes. They are meant to signify membership within the fraternity and signify certain shared beliefs among members.

Furthermore, Masonic symbols provide a means for members to remember their history and important lessons from the past. The use of symbolism in rituals helps Masons recall important teachings from their past that can be applied in current situations. Additionally, some symbols offer visually appealing representations that are designed to give members a sense of pride when they see them displayed in public places such as churches or meeting halls.

Overall, symbolism plays an important role in Freemasonry as it serves both practical and spiritual purposes. By understanding these symbols, Masons can communicate more effectively with each other while also gaining insight into the history and values of the fraternity.

What Do the Square and Compasses Mean?

The Square and Compasses are probably the best-known symbol of Freemasonry. They are a reminder to Masons that they should conduct themselves with moral rectitude, follow the principles of Brotherly Love, Relief, and Truth, and strive for spiritual growth. The Square represents morality and virtue, while the Compasses signify a Mason’s commitment to intellectual development. The two symbols together represent balance between physical and spiritual pursuits.

The Square also teaches Masons to act honorably in all their dealings with others, while the Compasses remind them that religious faith is essential to a well-rounded life. In addition to these moral lessons, Masons use the tools of architecture – the Square, Compasses, Level and Plumb Rule – to build temples of virtue in their hearts. These tools also serve as reminders that while Freemasonry is not an organized religion, it nevertheless encourages its members to pursue spiritual enlightenment through faith in divine providence.

The combination of the Square and Compasses is seen on Masonic buildings throughout the world, as well as on jewelry worn by Masons as a sign of their membership. It is also found on many Masonic documents such as certificates and diplomas awarded for various accomplishments or degrees attained within Freemasonry. The symbol serves as a reminder that Masonry is based upon timeless principles which have been handed down from generation to generation since its inception in 1717.

In short, the Square and Compasses are symbols of morality, brotherhood, personal growth and spiritual enlightenment – values which Freemasonry has stood for since its founding more than three centuries ago.

Last Thoughts

Masons use symbols to convey a vast range of meanings and messages. The symbols can represent abstract ideas, such as the search for knowledge, charity, and brotherly love. They also make reference to the journey of life and the importance of moral development and growth. Symbols have been used by Freemasonry since its inception because they provide a powerful way of communicating important values and lessons.

Symbols are an important part of Freemasonry not just for their historical significance but also for their ability to capture the essence of Masonic teachings and values in a concise way. They can also be used to remind Masons to stay true to their beliefs and remain focused on their mission of making the world a better place. Through these symbols, Masons can gain insight into the history and teachings of Freemasonry as well as draw inspiration from them in their everyday lives.

In reflection, Freemasonry has always made use of symbols to convey its core values and lessons, providing insight into its history as well as guidance in living an ethical life. Symbols are a powerful tool that can be used by Masons to stay true to their beliefs and focused on making the world a better place.


Esoteric Masons