The word brother has many definitions according to dictionary.com. One thing they all have in common, however, is that there is a bond between these people, a common relationship. The bond of fraternal brotherhood is a very strong one; some even say it is stronger than the bond of genetic brotherhood. This is largely contributed to the process of becoming a brother.
Pledgeship is where this transformation takes place. Pledges are working to gain the respect and trust of the brothers in the house. This takes time and a very large commitment. By putting yourself out there and talking to the brothers, helping them with odd jobs, and demonstrating that you have the best interest of the house in mind you are forging a relationship and bond with these guys.
Secrets are another thing that make the fraternal bond so strong. Every fraternity has secrets that only initiated brothers in the house know. This is something that every brother has in common. They know that the rest of the guys around them have all gone through the same experiences, which allows a higher level of trust and appreciation to form.
Recently I went on a weekend to trip to a cabin on the ohio river with some of the brothers in the house. At first I was confused at the selection of the group of people that were going. I didn't see these people hanging out on a regular basis nor did I feel like they were the closest to eachother. It didn't take much time though until I realized that it didn't matter who went on this trip; it was a great time because it was time with your brothers. It was a great weekend with no drama. That can rarely be said with trips of any other group.
Brotherhood is real. It's not something to be scoffed at nor taken lightly. It is a journey to achieve it, but once that journey has been traveled the rewards are tremendous and the lifelong family of brothers will stay with you forever.