What Is the Golden Circle in Masonry: Unveiling Its Secrets

The concept of the "golden circle" in Freemasonry refers to a proposed confederation of slave states in the United States during the era of abolitionism. As the movement against slavery gained momentum, members of the Knights of the Golden Circle (KGC) advocated for the secession of U.S. states located south of the Mason-Dixon line. Their ultimate goal was to establish a new alliance with potential slave-holding territories that would arise from this envisioned "golden circle." This notion, stemming from the divisive climate of the time, sought to protect and perpetuate the institution of slavery in certain regions.

Who Started the Golden Circle?

Simon Sinek, a renowned author and motivational speaker, is credited with creating the concept of the Golden Circle. Sinek first introduced this theory in his popular TED Talk titled “How Great Leaders Inspire Action.”. The Golden Circle is comprised of three concentric circles that represent the “why,” “how,” and “what” of individuals or organizations.

The innermost circle represents the “why” and is considered the driving force behind the actions of successful leaders and organizations. It delves into the purpose, beliefs, and core values that inspire and motivate people. Sinek argues that understanding the “why” is crucial for leaders because it establishes a strong emotional connection with their audience and enables them to rally support and loyalty.

Moving outward, the middle circle represents the “how” of the Golden Circle. This level encapsulates the strategies, processes, and actions that leaders or organizations undertake to fulfill their purpose and reach their goals. It focuses on the unique strengths, innovation, and approaches that differentiate them from others. Sinek emphasizes that it’s through the “how” that leaders can manifest their purpose and bring their vision to life.

The outermost circle signifies the “what” of the Golden Circle. This level encompasses the products, services, or tangible results that leaders or organizations offer. It represents the physical or material aspect of what they do or provide. While the “what” is often seen as the most visible part of an organization, Sinek argues that it’s the least influential in inspiring action or building strong relationships compared to the “why” and the “how.”

By understanding and embracing the Golden Circle, leaders and organizations can connect with their audience on a deeper level and inspire long-term loyalty. Sineks theory has gained significant popularity for it’s ability to explain why some leaders and organizations are more successful than others. It’s become a powerful tool for those seeking to create purpose-driven cultures, inspire innovation, and differentiate themselves in a crowded market.

The Order of the Golden Circle is a prestigious women’s auxiliary group that’s closely associated with the United Supreme Council, 33°, Ancient & Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry. This organization is part of the Scottish Rite, a branch of Freemasonry that allows Master Masons to delve deeper into the principles of Freemasonry. Specifically, the Order of the Golden Circle is affiliated with the Prince Hall Affiliation, Southern Jurisdiction, USA, Inc.

What Is Order of the Golden Circle?

The Order of the Golden Circle, also known as OGC, is a womens auxiliary of the United Supreme Council, 33°, Ancient & Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry in the Prince Hall Affiliation, Southern Jurisdiction, USA, Inc. This organization serves as a supportive and empowering network for women who’re affiliated with the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry.

As an auxiliary, the OGC complements the work of the United Supreme Council, 33°, by supporting it’s mission and initiatives. It serves as a vital extension of the Scottish Rite, embracing the same values and principles upheld by the Freemasons. This affiliation allows women to engage in meaningful discussions, exchange ideas, and contribute to the growth and development of the Freemasonry community.

The Order of the Golden Circle encourages active participation and involvement from it’s members. It provides opportunities for women to take on leadership roles, organize events, and contribute to various charitable initiatives.

Source: Knights of the Golden Circle

The concept of triads, or groups of three, can be found across various domains including nature, politics, and religion. In Freemasonry, the Three Great Pillars – Wisdom, Strength, and Beauty – symbolize the key values and principles that form the foundation of the Masonic tradition. Each pillar represents a distinct aspect of growth and enlightenment, making them integral to the philosophical teachings within Freemasonry. Let’s explore the significance of these pillars in more detail.

What Are the 3 Pillars of Masonry?

In Freemasonry, there are several Triads that hold great significance, with one of the most prominent being the Three Great Pillars: Wisdom, Strength, and Beauty. These pillars serve as fundamental principles within the Masonic philosophy, guiding members throughout their journey within the fraternity.

Firstly, Wisdom represents the intellectual aspect of Masonry. It emphasizes the importance of acquiring knowledge, understanding, and wisdom in order to navigate through life with virtue and integrity. Freemasons place great emphasis on the pursuit of knowledge as a means to develop oneself and contribute positively to society.

Secondly, Strength symbolizes the physical and moral strength that every Mason should strive to possess. Beyond physical prowess, this pillar signifies inner strength, resilience, and moral character. Freemasons endeavor to cultivate steadfastness and fortitude, enabling them to overcome challenges and remain steadfast in their commitment to the principles of Freemasonry.

Lastly, Beauty encompasses the spiritual and aesthetic dimensions of Freemasonry. It refers to the appreciation of beauty in the world and the recognition of the divine in all things.

The ideas of wisdom, strength, and beauty are universal virtues that have found resonance throughout human history, appearing in various cultural, philosophical, and spiritual contexts.

The Symbolism and Significance of the Three Great Pillars in Freemasonry

The Three Great Pillars in Freemasonry hold deep symbolism and significance. They represent the foundational principles of the organization: Wisdom, Strength, and Beauty. Wisdom signifies the pursuit of knowledge and truth, while Strength symbolizes inner fortitude and moral character. Beauty represents the harmony and balance achieved through the application of wisdom and strength. These pillars embody the values and virtues that Freemasons aim to cultivate within themselves and impart to society. By adhering to these principles, members aspire to contribute to the betterment of humanity and uphold the noble ideals of Freemasonry.


The "Golden Circle" in Masonry refers to a proposal put forth by members of the Knights of the Golden Circle, a secret society during the mid-19th century. As the abolitionist movement gained momentum in the United States, these individuals sought a different path. They envisioned a separate confederation of states where slavery would continue, and they aimed to create alliances with other territories that could potentially join this cause. This "golden circle" encompassed the U.S. states south of the Mason-Dixon line and held hopes of secession and the establishment of a new order based on the principles they held dear. Despite it’s secrecy and ambitious objectives, the Knights of the Golden Circle's influence and impact ultimately proved to be limited.

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