Some believe this esoteric work contains the knowledge of real magic. Is it possible that all the great Sages were teachers of this knowledge? Is it available? If so, where can we find it?
History tempts us with glimpses of Hermetics. There are hints about this ancient body of esoteric and mystical knowledge. Sages talk in riddles about it. Many teachers and sects claim to hold the secrets to this wisdom.
There are hints of this ancient wisdom in the traditions of many cultures. So is this a type of universal knowledge? Could it have been discovered independently by many cultures? Or does it result from one significant discovery that later made its way to the elite thinkers to preserve the knowledge?
The Teachers of Hermetics
This is an esoteric tradition based upon Hermes Trismegistus’s writings (“Thrice Great”). These ancient writings are a powerful influence in all Western esoteric traditions. These esoteric teachings became prominent during both the Renaissance and the Reformation.
Furthermore, this knowledge claims to trace its genesis to Prisca Theologia. This is a doctrine that asserts a single, true theology. And which is supposedly the basis for all true religions inspired by the Creator. Hence, the question. Is it possible all the great sages were teachers of Hermetics?
This prompts us to look for similarities in the ancient sages’ teachings. This tread leads us back further in ancient history to Egyptian, Babylonian, Persian, and Assyrian. These religions are the bedrock of mythological superstition in Western culture. The thread of philosophy and superstition is there. However, the public versions lack any substance of methods that would achieve their mystical aims. If these traditions hold Hermetic knowledge, it is not in the public versions of their holy texts.
So, was the Jesus of the Bible a conglomeration of earlier Sages? What about Buddha, Krishna, and Lao Tzu? Is it possible that all the great sages were teachers of Hermetics? The philosophical principles of the public texts contain a similar theme. They all claim that having this knowledge is the only way to go beyond philosophy and religion. The popular versions of their texts are absent any processes or methods to apply these principles.
That means, if this knowledge exists in written form, they are not available to the public. But it is more probable, as these traditions suggest, the knowledge communicated orally from teacher to student.
What Are Hermetics?
This knowledge must be more than a philosophy, and it must contain methods that affect change. The philosophical elements point to the goal or results. The core of Heremtics must be more concrete. Some believe it must be methods and processes which affect a change in reality. Tradition says that this knowledge is the essence of alchemy and the home of real magic. Could this knowledge be more prolific than we think? We find methods of altering and changing consciousness all over the world.
We find the philosophy of Hermetics in Gnosticism and Neoplatonism. And its namesake Hermeticism. Interestingly, this thread is found in the earlier mystery religions of Egypt, Persia, Assyria, Summaria, and Babylon.
The fundamental process for salvation comes from the dying-god cult sects of Egypt and Persia. Here we see the process for salvation in Christianity is the shadow of a more productive model known as “mystical mental appropriation.” This is an esoteric process whereby one reaches out mystically and mentally with the mind’s power and appropriates a mystical membership.
It is membership in an exclusive club that the Christians landed on as its main tenant. Selling the afterlife became more important, the knowledge of altering consciousness perhaps because they did not know or kept it for the elite.
The practice of restricting this kind of powerful knowledge is common. In this way, only those who are “worthy and ready” can learn the secret knowledge. This makes sense on several levels. One of the first principles of learning theory is making sure you are the learner is “ready to learn.”
If you are not ready, then trying to learn any powerful technology is ineffective. It can be harmful. This, too, is a common element found in many cultures. Additionally, if you have this type of powerful knowledge, you want to limit it to those who will not misuse it. One of the best ways to limit access is to disguise it and then hide them in plain sight—more about this technique in a moment.
You can trace the philosophical remnants to many cults and religions. All the great sages spoke of the importance of keeping the knowledge pure. They warned against allowing the Secret Doctrine to become part of religious dogma. When we study history, the wisdom of this caution is clear. w
Questions about the Esoteric Knowledge
When poses the question, what are Hermetics? We know for sure what it is not. It is not the philosophical remnants we find in the mythology of religion. It must be more. It must because mythology and religion lead us nowhere. It must be something more concrete. If it is a real form of magic, it must produce results. This is the actionable part of the knowledge missing from the texts? What happened to the actionable part of the knowledge? It exists but not in texts of religious mythology.
When people ask, what is Hermetics theory? They are asking, how does this stuff work? It’s a good question. The theory behind this technology gave rise to the principle of alchemy. What is needed is something that connects the dots between philosophy and the fragments of data we find in documents like the Kybalion. This is the information you need to reach the philosophical goals.
Dilution of Knowledge
India and Persia were once gardens of this knowledge. However, most of the Hermetic wisdom from these cultures are lost. Many of the ancient teachers became priests and prefects of religions. They mixed religious mythology with Hermetic wisdom to preserve the knowledge. Unfortunately, this dilution made the knowledge ineffectual. Those that still possess it are much more selective and secretive in teaching this knowledge.
We see the same dilution in Greece and Rome cultures. The Hermetic Teachings of the Gnostics from Persia were sacrificed to create the Roman Church. The masterful social architect Constantine is responsible for this loss. His unification strategy combines the mythologies of the dying-god cults into one religion. He could achieve higher cash flows with religion and lower cost than keeping an army in the field. Thus, reducing any risk of an insurgency while ensuring control of the region through religion.
The result of this dilution was the loss of the alchemy. They replaced effectual knowledge with mythological, religious superstition, cults, creeds, and gods. This became the universal religion, the Christian Church. Its blunder set back humankind on many levels. Its mythology blotting out the very essence and spirit of the knowledge that could have elevated humankind. This was necessary to make its customers dependent upon the Church.
The Abrahamic religions’ counterfeit teachings do not provide tools for the path of enlightenment. It does not satisfy the individual’s hunger for spiritual knowledge. But, it provides these regions with control and cash flow. They will defend their position through increasing fear.
Requires Personal Instruction
There are always a few faithful teachers who keep alive the Flame. They are tending it carefully. The ancient knowledge is still with us thanks to a few teachers.
Most interesting is that attempts to document this esoteric knowledge always seem to fail. What we find is nothing more than philosophical ramblings. Perhaps this is why all the great sages teach their students through personal instruction. A knowledgeable teacher is necessary to assess the student’s readiness. This is the only way to provide the correct teaching at the right time. It requires the right Mantra, the right Sutra, at precisely the right time.
The meaning of this knowledge is powerful and dangerous in the hands of the person who is not ready to handle it. So, instruction is often shrouded in parable and analogy. In this way, only those who understand can use esoteric knowledge. It is the difference between seeing a picture of someone kissing and kissing someone you love.
Maintaining the secrecy of the oral tradition is a practical necessity. It is required to avoid the persecutions of the dying-god worshipers. The god worshipers seek to destroy the Secret Doctrine by any means. It is hard to find any reliable books on Hermetic Philosophy. Even though there are countless references to these works, it seems probable that it is being passed through personal instruction.
Kybalion Principles and Meaning
The Kybalion is the name given to one of the early oral traditions of Hermetics. We have lost the exact significance and meaning of the term. The writings that exist contain a collection of mantras, sutras, maxims, axioms and precepts, and parables.
These writings contain analogies that are guideposts for those who understand them. It requires a level of understanding of someone already familiar with the underlying knowledge. The esoteric and poetic form of the Kybalion principles and meaning is not clear. The writings are absent the key that would allow us to understand them.
The work, “The Art of Hermetic Alchemy,” is a part of this tradition. But, it does not talk about the transformation of Material Elements. It deals with the mastery of Mental Forces and Opening Doors of Consciousness.
Likewise, the legends of the “Philosopher’s Stone” is understood as an analogy. It does not refer to turning base metal into Gold. Rather, it is an allegory relating to Hermetic Philosophy. All students of true Hermeticism would understand this. Many of the ancient parables and allegory find their roots here.
The later writers of the Abrahamic texts plagiarize these works to bolster their credibility. The Church appropriates these stories and parables to bolster its authenticity. Even the Abrahamic tell that authentic spirituality is not available in any religion. Jesus was not a Christan. He was raised Jewish. His enlightenment was appropriated by going into the wilderness.
Common Knowledge of all the Great Sages
Are the secrets closer than we think? Is this a universal body of knowledge? Is it available from other sources? Or, can we reveal these secrets in some way? Perhaps the key to solving the mystery of Hermetics lies in processes rather than philosophy. Some believe this is so. That means this ancient knowledge is hiding in plain sight.
Everyone has their way of awakening. And, each of us has spiritual gifts to aid in this quest. These gifts are sleeping in our DNA. So, waking these gifts is the key. It sets our spiritual walk into motion. It opens our minds to new potentials.
Finding ways to access these gifts was the central goal of many ancient cultures. And so, we benefit from generations of research. The results are a set of powerful tools anyone can use. We call these tools spiritual technologies. These are sound methods for expanding awareness and exploring consciousness.
Above all, these tools stand up to the test of science. They are repeatable experiential phenomena. And, higher states of awareness also have unique, measurable physiological signatures. They differ from the basic states of consciousness (waking, sleeping, and dreaming). These processes do not require belief in a religion. All you need to do is follow the process. For the most part, these tools come from Eastern traditions. This probably due to the fact their focus is on developing human potential.
Other schools of thought have a similarly eclectic approach. For example, Gurdjieff’s approach was to adopt what has already proven effective. After all, human physiology hasn’t changed in thousands of years. So, the work of the ancient pioneers stands the test of time. All you need to do is follow the process correctly; perhaps these processes are the secrets of Hermetics? These techniques are what we call spiritual technologies.
Spiritual technologies are tools for exploring consciousness. They result from generations of research by cultures around the world. These processes stand up to the test of science. They are repeatable and measurable. Everyone who can follow a process can use these tools. We call the practice of these processes spiritual exploration.
You can list these tools in several ways. Some fall into more than one group. We like this simple method of grouping.
The first group is several analytical tools to enhance critical thinking. The Enneagram Personality Profile is the first tool of our blended learning process. This tool provides insight into the mechanisms of ego, personality, and instinct.
The second group is the tools of logical reasoning. These tools help you to think logically and assess information using common sense. These tools are Logical reasoning, spotting logical fallacies, and logical axioms.
Next, a research tool we call Comparative Analysis. This is a process to help us explore and compare belief systems. This process is a scientific process form of comparative religious studies. Together these analytical tools give a solid foundation of common sense thinking. They sharpen your ability to discern facts from fiction.
Seated meditation is the heart of most spiritual practices. This includes a wide range of meditation techniques. It starts with Beginning Meditation and Mindfulness Meditation. It progresses to more advanced forms like Japa Meditation the Siddhis of Patanjali.
This is another foundational element that strengthens the mind-body connection. Moving meditation is another tool key to our health and wellness. This progression includes several methods of energy collection. Here we teach Forest Bathing, Qigong, and Tai Chi. It also includes more contemporary processes for Grounding. This includes techniques like Tree Grounding and Sun Gazing.
Pathways for expanding awareness include a variety of tools. This group includes practical tools like a Spiritual Journal and Automatic Writing. Here we introduce Lucid Dreaming, the Shamanic Journey, or Guided Meditation. There are also techniques for Third-Eye Awakening and soul memory awareness.
Healing practices are the last group. This branch includes Pe Jeut, Reiki, and Shiatsu. Self-care is an important element of this group. It is vital to normalize our inner work and maintain our health and wellness.
What are Hermetics? Our investigation leads us to the methods and processes of spiritual exploration. That means the esoteric knowledge of the ancients is hiding in plain sight. You can find it if you know what you are looking for. It leads us through the virtues of the spirit to our truth. Learn as many of the spiritual technologies as possible. You’ll find the right one which will open these doors. So, were all the great sages teachers of Hermetics? You decide.
Interested in spiritual exploration? Check out the blended learning process at the core of our teaching process. It reflects what Joseph Campbell called the Hero’s Journey. Our learning options include both face-to-face and virtual learning sessions. Please consider donating and supporting our mission. This helps others learn the knowledge for developing their path.
Esoteric Traditions, Wikipedia
Hermes Trismegistus, Wikipedia
The Reformation, Wikipedia
The Renaissance, Wikipedia
Prisca Theologia, Wikipedia
Joseph Campbell & Joseph Campbell’s book The Hero’s Journey, Wikipedia
Western Esotericism, Wikipedia
hermetic knowledge, hermetics.org