THE HERMETIC PRINCIPLES - THE SOURCE OF ALL SPIRITUAL TEACHINGS

June 28, 2018

Perhaps you know that some places on Earth are considered to have carried ancient wisdom concerning the nature of Creation such as India, Tibet, China, Japan, Ancient Greece and Rome, India being the current spiritual center of the world. Its philosophy speaks of Creation as being the product of an omnipotent and omniscient force (God), which created everything through its mind. According to this theology God began Creation with the Word (Aum) and the spirit was manifested. This spirit is considered to be the source of consciousness itself. It manifested itself into 3 distinct frequencies of vibrations which are refered to as "The Three Gunas". They represent the 3 different levels of creation - Materialistic, Mental and Spiritual (Tamas, Rajas and Satwa). Between these 3 gunas, many more different frequencies of vibrations reside, creating many more worlds, each one on a different frequency. The hindu philosophy also talks about the different aspects of the mind, as for example - buddhi, ahamkara, manas and chitta. They represent the intellectual mind, our identifications (Ego), the process of gathering information through the five senses, and our most deepest subconscious level within which all other aspects of the mind operate. Even though i'm stating these ideas and teachings from a hindu perspective, they could also be found to some extend in Persia, China, Japan, Ancient Greece, Rome, Egypt, Assyria, etc. Regardless of the place we choose to look towards for this spiritual wisdom, they all seem to be united within a single philosophy coming from Ancient Egypt, or to be more specific from Hermes Trismegistus. From this person, or spiritual being, came one of the main sources of modern spiritual philosophies and teachings - Hermeticism. The most popular modern book on hermeticism is called "Kybalion". It explains the 7 principles, or laws, which govern the Universe and all beings are subjected to them. The 7 principles being:

- The Principle of Mentalism
- The Principle of Correspondence 
- The Principle of Vibration 
- The Principle of Polarity 
- The Principle of Rhythm 
- The Principle of Causality 
- The Principle of Gender

In this article, a brief explanation about each principle will be presented and we will go deeper into the source of Creation and what is the essence of the hermetic teaching.


WHO IS HERMES TRISMEGISTUS?

Hermes Trismegistus is the author of both the Emerald Tablets and Corpus Hermeticum. He is also considered to be a combination of the Egyptian God "Thoth" and the Greek God Hermes (the son of Zeus) who were both Gods of writing and magic in their times. One of the most inlfuential people to ever write about astrology, kabbalah, masonry, metaphysics, myths, rosicrucianism, theology, hermetism, etc. - Manly P. Hall, describes Hermes Trismegistus as such:
“Master of all arts and sciences, perfect in all crafts, Ruler of the Three Worlds, Scribe of the Gods, and Keeper of the Books of Life, Thoth Hermes Trismegistus — the Three Times Greatest, the “First Intelligencer” — was regarded by the ancient Egyptians as the embodiment of the Universal Mind. While in all probability there actually existed a great sage and educator by the name of Hermes, it is impossible to extricate the historical man from the mass of legendary accounts which attempt to identify him with the Cosmic Principle of Thought.”
The escence of the Hermetic teaching is the mental transmutation through which we unite ourselves with the source. Hermeticism teaches that if one aquires mastery over his mental states, he becomes capable of everything, as the Universe itself is mental. The successful mental transmutation can be manifested only when one grasps the understanding behind the 7 hermetic principles. The Hermetic teachings on transforing the mentality seems to be the core of many meditational, self-discovery and self mind-control practices. Hermeticism also deals with astrology, alchemy and psychology, which are the building blocks of nowadays astronomy, chemistry and modern psychology.


THE PRINCIPLE OF MENTALISM

"The All is mind; The Universe is Mental."

This principle states that everything within Creation is mental. All phenomena are due to the mental power of the "ALL", which cannot be defined even by the most enlightened beings. According to this principle, everything you can think of, or imagine, is the product of the mental power of the ALL, therefore the ALL exists in everything as everything is within the ALL. This will be further explained when we get to the many failures to describing the ALL.

THE PRINCIPLE OF CORRESPONDENCE

"As above, so below; as below, so above. As within, so without; as without, so within."

This principle was used by people whom goal was to understand the existence behind the curtains of the physical world. The principle states that which is above corresponds to that which is below, and the opposite is true as well. The only difference between the "above" and "below" is the measurement of the complexity. The Principle of Correspondence therefore, is the key to tapping into the unknown, because if you know what is below, you will know what is above, and if you know what is within, you will know what is without.


THE PRINCIPLE OF VIBRATION

"Nothing rests; Everything moves; Everything vibrates."

The Principle of Vibration states that everything moves and all movement is a product of the ALL's mental power, and those movements (vibrations) create all world withiin Creation. From a physical perspective - every emotion, every action and every thought have their own correspondending vibrational frequency. The solid matter in our world is also a product of vibrations, as well as all known forces such as heat, electromagnetism, light, sound, gravity,  spin, etc. A similar example to describe that would be the following:


- Imagine that you are watching a spinning metal plate. When the frequency of vibrations increases, the spin speed increases with it. When the spin becomes so fast that our eyes sees it as being static we began to hear a very deep sound. As the frequency becomes even higher, the sound tones get higher and higher until our ears cannot hear any sounds anymore. Then we start to experience "heat" and not long after we begin seeing the plate changing colors by going from red to orange then to yellow, green, blue, indigo and finally violet. As the frequency gets even higher our eyes stop perceiving any colors whatsoever (even though they have not stopped being emitted in the x-rays and gamma rays ranges). As the frequency gets even higher, the plate begins to decompose to its fundamental particles - electrons and ions. Then the movement of the electrons create an electric current and where there is electricity, magnetism is present as well, therefore we experience the electromagnetic force. If we continue to apply this principle of rising the frequency, that plate would reach its source - THE ALL. This simple experiment demonstrates that all known forces to science are products of vibrations. You can imagine everything in Creation as a product of different vibrational frequencies, where the lowest frequency is seen as a flat line, but on the other end, the highest frequency can also be seen as a flat line with infinite amplitude.

THE PRINCIPLE OF POLARITY

“Everything is Dual; everything has poles, everything has its pair of opposites; like and unlike are the same; opposites are identical in nature, but different in degree’ extremes meet, all truths are but half-truths; all paradoxes may be reconciled.”

The core teaching of this principle is that everything in the physical, mental and the spiritual realm, has poles and pairs of opposites, which are just different sides of the same coin. For example, we have light and dark, love and hate, joy and misery, etc. - they are all considered as saparate mental states by nowadays psychology, but if you look at them with a better understanding, those pairs are not separate at all. Let's take love and hate for example, these are both feelings standing on the same measuring line. When we say that we love someone, our mental state towards that person stands on one end of that measuring line. The less we love someone, the more our mental state goes towards the other end. Hate is the lack of love, or we can also say that love is the lack of hate, but in essence they are both identical in nature but different in degree. This principle can be applied to everything in existence, because "as above, so below." What we refer to as "truth" is our own personal opinion regarding different aspects of life, but every person has a different perspectives on the same topics, therefore what is true for you is false for others. So all truths are but half-truths. And if you understand this principle all paradoxes can be reconciled.


THE PRINCIPLE OF RHYTHM

“Everything flows out and in; everything has its tides; all things rise and fall; the pendulum swing manifests in everything; the measure of the swing to the right is the measure of the wring to the left; rhythm compensates.”

According to this principle there is a constant swing between all polaritie and that swing is always with the same force for both ends. If we experience a very deep emotion, then we will experience its opposite with the same strength. If we live a life with little happiness, then we will experience little sadness. If you live a life with very joyful moments, you will experience very miserable moments as well - the swing is always with the same force. You can see this principle everywhere in our lives - everything (people, animals, plants, mountains, etc.) is born, grows, reaches its peak and then the backward process manifests - it starts losing strength, life force and dies in the end, after that they reincarnate again. Stars form, their fuel runs out and they die. This principle can also be found in the building blocks of our material world, which are in constant movement. It can also be applied to human history - different nations came and went. The most advanced people in hermeticism are able to rise their level of consciousness which gives them the ability to go "above" the swing of the pendulum. Most people have experienced this in one way or another, refusing the outside world and their emotions to influence them is an example. Though most people do that by suppressing them, the hermetic master does not suppress anything, but rather rises to his higher consciousness and let's the unwanted swings pass below him so it doesn't affect his perception or well-being. After all, life is just happening according to the 7 hermetic principles and if the pendulum swings back and forth, then it is only a matter of perception to how we react towards the swings. Life happens within us, we are the creators of our joy and suffering, of our love and hate, etc., our emotions and feelings are not sitting somewhere else waiting for us to get them, we create them based on how we react towards the outside world. A hermetic master can enjoy the pendulum swing towards one end and rise above when is going towards the other end so the pendulum misses him.

THE PRINCIPLE OF CASUALITY

“Every Cause has its Effect; every Effect has its Cause; everything happens according to Law; Chance is but a name for Law not recognized; there are many planes of causation, but nothing escapes the Law.”

This principle teaches that "accidents" do not exist, chance also does not exist. From a quantum physics perspective, without an observer, energy exist as possibilities and our act of observation is the cause for the effect of a particle being manifested. You are here because billions of years ago a dust cloud turned into a Sun in a certain point in space. It is just that our finite mind cannot track nor comprehend the immensity of this law, therefore when you win from the lottery you call it "luck", when you are thinking of someone and he calls, you call it "synchronicity" or perhaps "chance", when you ride your bicycle in the mountains and a rock falls in front of you and you bump into it, you call it "accident". If you however, are conscious of your body, emotions and actions 100% of your time, then luck, synchronicity, accident or chance will not exist for you. Most people are conscious about less than 1% of their lives. People are not aware of their body, their feelings, emotions and the sources of their desires in every given moment, let alone being aware of all those things 24 hours a day. You bumped into the mountain rock, because it fell right in front of you, but that rock fell because the soil on which it was standing was weak, it was weak because of the constant exposure to rains, etc. As you can see, nothing happens without a cause and every effect acts as a cause. Synchronicity in your personal life is caused by you alone. It is your way of living (mental and physical) that makes the effects from various causes to manifest at the same moment in your life, it's just that your mind cannot comprehend it as your own doing, therefore you see it as manifested "chance" or as a celestial being running your life.


THE PRINCIPLE OF GENDER

“Gender is in everything; everything has its Masculine and Feminine Principles; Gender manifests on all planes.”

Here it is important to understand that the word "gender" should not be described with man or a woman or associated with them alone. Gender should be looked at as a thing which gives two qualities to certain aspects of Creation which are meant to connect. A woman and a man are just manifestation of gender, protons and electrons are also manifestation of gender. Both qualities of gender attract each other in order to create all forms of existence, that's called "Tantra" in hinduism. For example, when a male and a female connect, they create a new being with both the characteristics of its "creators". When electrons interact with ions, a new particle comes into existence that has the qualities of both, and we call that particle an atom. Magnetism also has its gender qualities, being "positive" and "negative", where the names do not have anything to do with the qualities associated with them. 

It is important to understand the Principle of Mentalism, because that is the key to knowing how to be and to do what we desire.
It is important to always remember the Principle of Correspondence, because it teaches us that all other principles manifest in all levels of Creation, therefore it is the key to know what is outside of our physical experience.
It is important to know how to use the Principle of Vibrations as it is the key to being a Creator.
It is important to understand the Principle of Polairty, as it teaches you about the duality of life, which gives you wisdom and a better understanding about everything.
It is important to acknowledge and understand how the Principle of Rhythm works, otherwise you will be sitting on the pendulum swinging you back and forth.
It is important to understand the Principle of Gender, as it is through its qualities that life can be shaped in various forms.


THE NATURE OF THE ALL

The "ALL" has been given many names throughout time - God, Consciousness, Spirit, etc., and also many descriptions, but none of them are true. The reason why the "ALL" cannot be described is because everything exist within it. The ALL is absolutely everything that exist, nothing can exist outside of it, otherwise THE ALL wouldn't be THE ALL. It also has to be infinite, because nothing can set boundaries to the ALL. It has to be infinite in time and it must had always existed, as nothing else, which it could have created it, has ever existed. Nothing can exist without or outside of THE ALL and something can never came out of nothing. Everything exist within THE ALL, therefore no space exist outside of it. THE ALL cannot be divided or separated, because it wouldn't be THE ALL. It has to be unchangeable in nature, because nothing that can change its nature exist, nor it exist something that can trigger a change in THE ALL. It is not energy, it is not matter, it is not mind, THE ALL is the source of all those things. THE ALL is the Creator of the 7 hermetic laws, but it is not govern by them, whereas everything else is.


Considering all this, THE ALL has to be infinite, absolute, eternal and permanent in its nature. In order for something to be capable of giving characteristics, or describing THE ALL, it has to exist outside of it, that is the only way to examine it, but since that is impossible we reach the conclusion that THE ALL is indescribable. Regardless of who tries to describe or understand THE ALL, it would fail or go crazy. Since the Universe is mental and we are part of it, that means we exist within the mind of THE ALL. A good analogy of that would be an author writing a story. All different characters playing in his story exist only within his mind, and even though all characters are coming from and existing within the same source, they all have different personalities. Similarly, we exist within the mind of THE ALL, having our own individual experiences, personalities and characteristics, but we can never say that we are THE ALL, because that means the character states he is the author. But following the Principle of Polarity, we can look at this statement from the other side of the same coin. Since we exist within THE ALL, then THE ALL must exist in us. For example, every author has given personalities to his characters through his own mind, therefore the author's nature and identity exist within the whole story. Similarly, we, along with every other thing in Creation, are represantation of THE ALL's nature.


If you wish to learn more about Hermeticism and have a better understanding of it, you should check the following books for a start:

- "The Kybalion" by Three Initiates

- "Hermetica: The Greek Corpus Hermeticum and the Latin Asclepius" by Brian P. Copenhaver
- "Hermetica" by Walter Scott

- "The Secret Teachings of all Ages" by Manly P. Hall

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