Sunday, January 13, 2008

Freemasonry in Iran

A week ago a young man by them name of Reza left a comment in my blog asking about joining Freemasonry. This isn’t all that uncommon, as I get e-mails of the same, but he said that he was living in Iran. I thought with all of the banter about regular, irregular, clandestine, co-masonry, that we need to reflect about 30 years ago when Freemasonry was banned from Iran and it’s supporters chased from the country under Islamic fascism.

For those that don’t know the 1978-79 revolution in Iran made Persian Freemasons vulnerable to the anti-Masonic sentiments and threats from the leaders of the revolution. The leaders identified Masons as American and Zionist agents, and where also greatly responsible for the woes of the country. The secretive nature of the Masonic order in Persia made it susceptible to conspiracy theories and of course their secret rule. The biggest blow to the Persian Freemasonry came when the Masonic archive and roster of members of the lodges under the jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of Iran was captured. From this point membership in Freemasonry was declared a crime and the roster was used by the Islamic Republic to persecute hundreds of Persian Masons whose names appeared on the list. After the firm establishments of the Islamic Republic Masons were executed, more were imprisoned, and a large number were purged from government offices and schools. During this time propaganda was published much like works in 1938 Germany accusing Freemasons of all kinds of conspiracies against the government and people of the Islamic faith.

Many master masons managed to leave the country legally or illegally and immigrated to Europe, Canada and the United States. In 1982 17 past masters of Persian lodges sent a petition seeking permission to continue their fraternity as members of the Grand Lodge of Iran. The request was accepted, and the meeting of the Grand Committee of the Lodge was convened later that year at the Grand Lodge of New York. In March of 1985, the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts granted approval to the Grand Lodge of Iran (in exile) to conduct Masonic activities in the City of Boston. There are now Persian lodges in Washington D.C., France and in California all under the Grand Lodge of Iran (in exile).

The current contact information for the Grand Lodge of Iran(in exile) is:

Grand Lodge of Iran (in exile)
P.O. Box 25017
Los Angeles, CA 90025, USA

e-mail: GlofI@aol.com

Many thanks to the members of the Philalethes Society for helping me out, most of the information was heavily lifted from: http://www.iranica.com/articles/v10f2/v10f235d.html

21 comments:

Reza Heydari said...

thanks for your attention to my comment.

i really surprised of your information about Iran.

I didn't have the e-mail of iran grand lodge in exile. i will contact them.

Reza said...

I'm not a liar

FD2L said...

Reza,

Who called you a liar?

Lost in translation?

-Vick

reza said...

;)

Corey_V said...

Hi
This is very interesting and thanks for the info provided. I know my grandfather was a mason in the city if abadan. I will certainly contact the lodge to see if there are any older brethren from that city who knew him.

Fatherland Almighty said...

This is great. I'm an American born to Iranian parents and also a Master Mason. I am sure some of the GLofI members are very old now and need some new members to carry the torch and the struggle. I will be contacting them via email. Thanks so much!

Bahman said...

I am a 50 year old who has returned to Iran after living in the US for the past 27 years. Having read a lot of books on FreeMasonry and not being a part of the current "revolution generation" of Iranians who were born after the revolution; I am feeling like a very small fish in a very large pond, maybe even the ocean. I am searching for some light at the end of the tunnel I am in hoping that some of the positive contributions of the freemasons of the past can continue in the future here and bring us into the 15th century "Shamsi" since we are from from the 21st AD. Hoping someone will pick this up and let me see the light.

Avalanche

tree.1 said...

Dear Bahman,
I just published an article about Freemasonry in Rahavard Journal which you might find interesting and I can email it to you if you would like. How can I find your email address?
Mitra

Kerost said...

Does the Grand Lodge of Iran in Exile in Los Angeles have a Grand Master?
If so, can he be named?

Kerost said...

Doe the Grand Lodge of Iran in Exile have a Grand Master? If so, can he be named?

Shadi said...

hi my name is shadi
every year we have to chose a project obout every thing and work on it in school . this year me and my classmates chose freemasonery .
i did many research on it .
last night i saw your weblog you know when i search in farsi more text that come about freemasonery in google are say this is a very bad group that they disagree with god and they want to Domination all the country .
but when i search it in english it is opposit .
which one can i belived .
are they good person or bad ?
where is exile ?
i love to be a Architect and i love the symbol of the freemasonery and i want to know if freemasonery is a good group that Serving people i join the goup .

The Revenger said...

cant i meet any masons in iran?

elyas said...

hi shadi
nobody can say you what is good or what is bad. it's your choice. but i think you can't be a member of freemasonry in iran.
and exile means (tabeed) somewhere out of your contry.

elyas said...

hi shadi
nobody can say you what is good or what is bad. you are alone. it's your choice. but about freemasonry you can't be a member of freemasonry in iran. it's barred in iran.
and exile means (tabeed) somewhere out of your country.
be happy
h:.

Salar Xplod said...

Hi mitra i would like to read your article. would you please email it to me.
many thanks
Philip Wilder
expatriate.xplod@gmail.com

cowanite said...

As a matter of interest the Grand Master of the Iran Grand Lodge ( albeit in exile) is the uncle of a member of our lodge here in Australia. I have spoken to him several times.

Cowanite

V said...

Shodi,
It does not surprise me that you have read somethings saying falsehoods about us Masons being irreligious, or against God, or bad; but, from my experience I can tell you it is quite the opposite. Here in the United States, all regular accepted masons must have a belief in God, be good men who come well recommended and maintain but their upright standing with society and their faith. Of the reasons some people believe masons are bad the, by far, MOST most common reason is fear of the unknown. Outsiders don't know everything we do, they see our charitable works and good role, and hear rumors of our "strange rituals" which are truly not that strange at all, because people don't know what's going on they make up stories and spread them like fire shooting from their mouths and fingertips to the ears and eyes of all who would care to listen.

TtFfAa said...

It is really hard to get information in Iran and all the things which I get is vague. I found close relation between the beliefs and rituals of masons with old Persian philosophers and of course much more ancient Greek philosophers... and the light of seeing the world with the fire that is intrinsic to the world and shines in hierarchy through members, and that is enlightenment to your capacity( intelligent and intellectual quality ) ...

Me, Myself & I said...

Are there any Farsi speaking Craft members here?
If you are one, please contact me.

Email: tr333bor@gmail.com

sean shirzadi said...

I am an iranian American who live in Austin Texas I like to know more about iranian fn group if anyone have any info please contact me at 788i887@gmail.com

Bircher Family Tree said...

As a former American military officer, my family and I had the pleasure to live in Iran twice -- the first time 1966 to 1968 and the second, 1973 to 1975. In fact, our oldest son was born in Teheran in 1967. I was honored to become a member of Lodge Light in Iran #1 which met in Saltanatabad in northern Teheran. I have a lot of information about that particular lodge and its members. I have been looking for years for one particular family with whom we were friends -- Salah and Edward Chitiyat. As a Jewish family, I hope they were lucky enough to escape prior to the revolution.