Order of Bees
Ritual of the Second Degree - Thrift


In ante-room, one Colony Watchman, with Humble Bee—gives two raps on Colony door—answered by three raps—answered by one rap. Enters Colony Hall as door is opened.
Colony Hall and ante-room to be in complete darkness. Watchman with candidate proceeds into the hall.
Watchman, after two minutes interval:
Mighty King Bee, darkness overwhelms us, and we see no prospects of light.
King Bee:
Keep striving, Brother.
Watchman continues walking.
Mighty King Bee, we are almost exhausted in our attempts to find the light, so that our walk will be easier.
King Bee:
Never give up, Brother, remember it is always darkest just before dawn.
In a short interval the light is turned on.
Ah, the light, now our path will be easier. Conducts candidate to Noble Bee, business to be conducted personally.
After completion, watchman conducts candidate back to noble Bee.



Noble Bee:
Thrift implies frugality, economy, good management, prudence, carefulness. We should say it means these things in all the walks of life,—in regard to business, social, intellectual and religious life and personal care.
First, in regard to business life. Can a young man starting out in the world ever hope to gain a foothold, firm and sure, without constant practice of thrift? He who thoughtlessly, carelessly or willfully spends all his earnings is surely laying by for himself a time of poverty, want and despair, a time when he will see his loved ones suffer for the things he cannot provide. To spend week in and week out all that one makes, and perhaps a little more borrowed from a trusting friend He means well he fully intends paying back, but living expenses increase, Perhaps illness throws him out of work for a time; he is forced to borrow more to tide him over to better days. Debts have a wonderful way of increasing and fastening themselves around the neck of a man like a great rock He is so burdened with them that he cannot put forth his best energies; his sleep is troubled and broken and his earning capacity is steadily lessened He sees so many opportunities whereby he could make a comfortable living—he feels he has the ability, if, if, if, he was only out of debt and had just a little to start with, but he has to let it pass. He struggles hard and may, with ninny sacrifices, be able to pay off finally his just and honest debts—but his golden opportunities have passed, his ambition and strength of body are failing him.
Or if he is not able to pay off his debts, should illness, loss of position, or many other misfortunes overtake him, he goes down to his grave leaving a heritage of debts and a clouded name to those who loved him and had a right to look to him for support. He knows in his own soul that he was honest and meant well, but many would believe him dishonest and thriftless and shiftless, all because he knew not how or could not see the necessity of taking care of the pennies and living within his income.
In contrast to this man we will take one of the same age with less ability and much smaller earnings. He looks around him, he sees the men who have made a success in life and the men who have failed. Men who have started out with only their own energy, pluck and determination to aid them have made great fortunes, starting out with a mere pittance for wages or salary. He thinks the matter over and compares the lives of the men around him. Soon comes to the conclusion—‘Tis not what a man makes, but what he saves, that totals his real worth. He sees the man next to him earning far more than he—but this man s motto is live while you live, and he spends as fast as he makes. So he determines within himself to practice thrift, to live within what he makes and save a little besides. This he does faithful systematically, and in a few years an opportunity to invest wisely his savings presents itself, and soon he finds himself climbing more easily each succeeding round of the ladder of financial success.
Thrift affects our social, intellectual and religious life. Socially—by providing us with better surroundings, better homes, better clothes, etc. Intellectually—by giving us more time and more money to devote to study, self-culture, art, literature, travel—all that pertains to culture and refinement. Religiously—by giving us the means not only to be good, but to do good. Yes, thrift affects both our religious and personal life as well as social and business life.
The thrifty man practices self denial, the doing without some things he thinks are almost necessary, the curbing of appetite, the determination to give up some longed for pleasure—but all such denials repay many fold by giving great strength of character, the power to conquer one’s self. When a man masters himself, then he is able to rule others.
Thrift in regard to physical life will not permit one to waste his strength, to use up his energies by useless and frivolous use of time. It teaches that he must have proper recreation, proper food and proper rest. Thrift teaches us to become master of self instead of slave to personal desires. It teaches holding ones physical being in subjection to his better self-economy of strength, economy of time, economy of earnings.
To practice thrift, avoid the little leaks—the spending of little driblets here and there. Save the pennies, the nickels, the dimes, and succeed you must and will. Be as thrifty as the thrifty bee, laying by in the summer time of youth for the winter of old age.
You have witnessed tonight the results that generally follow perseverance, all of which go hand in hand with thrift.
Noble Bee:
Conduct Humble Bee to King Bee for further instructions.
King Bee:
Humble Bee, remember the lesson tonight. Carry it with you, and may you profit by it, I now create you a Thrifty Bee, and confer upon you the degree of Thrift.
King Bee:
Watchman, conduct the Thrifty Bee to the anteroom for further orders.