Ironically, Freemasonry today is a fraternity deserving of fame as a huge charity source, as opposed to its unfortunate and more common ‘darker’ image as a "secret society." While the "Craft" employs the element of intrigue, by emulating a variety of supposed secrecy, city libraries and the Internet are quite clear as to the lack of secrecy. Approximately 60,000 books have been written on Freemasonry; what ‘secrecy’ could be possible?
The vast range of charitable activities from children's hospitals, charity funds and retirement homes attest to the essence of this society.
It’s necessary to mention that while Freemasons were key to the formation of the USA and its prideful evolution; that aspect of the Craft is no longer worth considering as any kind of political force, except in a historical perspective. If one wants high level political intrigue, the elements of the infamous "New World Order" are the appropriate focus.
The core of Freemasonry is what is known as the "Master Mason’s Lodge," commonly referred to as a "Blue Lodge," the color ‘blue,’ being said to be "Masonically" symbolic of fidelity, loyalty and friendship. However, the ‘expanse’ of Masonic organizations is huge; attempting to be a "family" fraternity, in sum.
The "Craft" includes a host of "appendant" bodies, such as the ‘male’ Scottish Rite, the York Rite and the Shriners, as well as ‘mixed’ bodies such as the Order of the Eastern Star and the Order of the Amaranth. There are also uniquely female Masonic groups, such as the Daughters of the Nile, and the Ladies Oriental Shrine. There is also a variety of ‘youth’ groups such as Demolay for boys, and the Order of the Rainbow for girls, as well as Job’s Daughters.