(Article by Livekindly)
Scottish vegans can become freemasons now. The Grand Lodge of Scotland has updated its centuries-old traditions to allow vegans entry to the fraternal organization.
Scottish freemasons have traditionally worn lambskin aprons during certain ceremonies and rituals. But now, the Grand Lodge of Scotland will allow the use of vinyl alternatives instead.
Freemasons favor the lamb as a symbol of purity, and the organization’s aprons serve as both practical and symbolic shields. Freemasons including Robert Burns and Arthur Conan Doyle have all worn lambskin aprons at the lodge during its 280-year history.
In a social media post seen by The Times, the freemasons spokesperson explained that “many lodges now use vinyl [aprons],” and added, “please remember that it [the lambskin apron] is symbolic and does not need to be real.”
The United Grand Lodge of England, sister organization to the Grand Lodge of Scotland, has permitted animal-free alternatives for decades.
Sam Calvert, a spokesperson for The Vegan Society, says it’s “good to see” the freemasons include vegan members.
“This is in line with the Equality Act,” he said. The act should protect people against discrimination for their protected beliefs—including vegans, explained Calvert.