To become a member of the Masons, you must contact your local Lodge and ask for a petition. Depending on the jurisdiction, you can be invited to join by a current member or you can ask to join independently. Prior to acceptance, you must undergo an investigation and be balloted upon by your prospective Lodge brethren. Once you complete three degree ceremonies, Entered Apprentice, Fellow Craft and Master Mason, you are a full member.
Freemasonry has several requirements for new members. These include, with some variations between jurisdictions and countries, that you must be a man of good repute, that you believe in a Supreme Being, and that you live an ethical and moral life. You must also be able to support yourself and your family and have a strong desire to make a positive impact on your community and the world. In the United States, most states require new applicants to be at least 21 years old.
The degree ceremonies correspond to stages of Masonic education. Masonic education encourages morality, brotherhood, charity and personal integrity. Many Masonic lessons include symbols and ceremonies with roots in Mason tradition and Scripture. The stated objective of Freemasonry is to foster brotherhood between men and goodwill toward all of mankind. While Freemasonry is not a religion, the organization places great significance on the Fatherhood of God, who is often referred to as the Supreme Architect of the Universe.