1 "Only our holy brotherhood has the real meaning of life, all the rest is a dream," said Pierre.
2 "Yes, I belong to the Brotherhood of the Freemasons," said the stranger, looking deeper and deeper into Pierre's eyes.
3 "God, death, love, the brotherhood of man," he kept saying to himself, associating these words with vague yet joyful ideas.
4 You say: join our brotherhood and we will show you the aim of life, the destiny of man, and the laws which govern the world.
5 It seemed to me that his object in entering the Brotherhood was merely to be intimate and in favor with members of our lodge.
6 He said that Freemasonry is the teaching of Christianity freed from the bonds of State and Church, a teaching of equality, brotherhood, and love.
7 Now I must disclose to you the chief aim of our Order," he said, "and if this aim coincides with yours, you may enter our Brotherhood with profit.
8 A person of very high standing in our Brotherhood has made application for you to be received into our Order before the usual term and has proposed to me to be your sponsor.
9 He firmly believed in the possibility of the brotherhood of men united in the aim of supporting one another in the path of virtue, and that is how Freemasonry presented itself to him.
10 Soon after his admission to the masonic Brotherhood, Pierre went to the Kiev province, where he had the greatest number of serfs, taking with him full directions which he had written down for his own guidance as to what he should do on his estates.
11 But make our fundamental convictions your own, join our brotherhood, give yourself up to us, let yourself be guided, and you will at once feel yourself, as I have felt myself, a part of that vast invisible chain the beginning of which is hidden in heaven, said Pierre.
12 At the moment the door opened and the stranger came in, Pierre felt a sense of awe and veneration such as he had experienced in his boyhood at confession; he felt himself in the presence of one socially a complete stranger, yet nearer to him through the brotherhood of man.