The teachings of Hermetica provide insight into how the Cosmos evolves physically, non-physically, and how consciousness affects the evolution of everything. These teachings reveal humankind’s role in the evolutionary process, and provide the steps one must take in order to grow into comprehension of the Truth of the Light. Once the student of the Hermetica masters its teachings and principles, they will be adept at living life wisely, and masterful at living in accordance with the natural laws of the Cosmos. The laws that govern all that exists both in light and in matter.
– Carol Ritberger
The Hermetica is a collection of writings believed to be written around 3000BCE by Thoth also known as the Egyptian God Hermes. The Hermetica reveals how this mythical ancient Egyptian sage was transformed into a god because he freed his human mind of its limitations making it possible for him to access the wisdom and knowledge of the Divine Mind. Thoth/Hermes is credited with the invention of sacred hieroglyphic writing, and is said to be the dispatcher of divine messages, and the recorder of all human deeds. He is also credited for teaching the Egyptians all knowledge about astronomy, architecture, geometry, medicine, and religion.
Thoth/Hermes was believed by the ancient Greeks to be the architect of the pyramids. The Greeks, who were in awe of his knowledge identified him with their own god Hermes, who is the messenger of the gods, and the guider of souls into the realm of the dead. However, to distinguish the Egyptian Hermes from their own, the Greeks gave him the title of Trismegistus, meaning Thrice Great to honor his knowledge.
The teachings of Hermetica are based on one simple truth. Everything that exists is a thought within the Divine Mind. There are three primary pillars of truths shared in the Hermetica. They are: 1) the Soul is both the Creator and the Created, 2) the Divine Mind is the Oneness, which unites everything, and 3) the Divine Mind and the Human Mind are one. They are inseparable. At the heart of the Hermetic teachings is the knowledge the soul is immortal, and that it’s through the raising of human consciousness the immortal soul is capable of being spiritually reborn in the matter of the physical body.
Hermetica isn’t a dogma or a doctrine. It isn’t intended to be followed or worshiped as one would a religion. Instead, Hermetica is primarily a philosophy of life. A philosophy that offers guidance and direction as to how one should conduct their lives if they’re to achieve union with the Divine Source and experience immortality. The teachings of Hermetica are offered as a gift from the Divine Source, and are intended to assist souls move from ignorance (lack of awareness) to enlightenment (embodiment of the Divine Mind.) The teachings reveal that in doing so, the human mind will come to know the soul’s purpose. Therefore, one will find meaning in the experience’s life offers.
Hermetica teaches that earthly existence is the opportunity to train the human mind how to rise above itself, meaning to transcend itself so, it can rise from the torments of life. The rising above itself makes it possible for it to free itself from its shortcomings and weaknesses, and will lead to the development of its inner vision. The teachings reveal that only then can the human mind use its divine powers to experience earthly reality without limitations, and can access the abundance offered by the Divine Source and the Cosmos.
The collection of books attributed to Thoth/Hermes are known as the Corpus Hermeticum. They’re a total of eighteen books. Seventeen survived throughout the rise and falls of many civilizations. Book Fifteen is still missing. While the writings are dense and somewhat impenetrable the student of Hermetica can uncover the essential wisdom they contain.
Hermetica…The Wisdom of Antiquity
History shows that wherever the teachings of the Hermetica were studied and revered, civilizations flourished. Its teachings have influenced many cultures; Greeks, Jews, Egyptians, Buddhists, Muslims, Hindus, Sufis, and Christians. It’s the cornerstone of Western Culture. Its teachings and their importance are equal to other well-known Eastern teachings like the Upanishads, the Dhammapada, the Bhagavad Gita, and the Tao Te Ching. Yet, unlike these teachings, which are readily available and widely read, the teachings of Hermetica continue to be shrouded in mystic occultism, and the wisdom it contains has been obscured in religious and academic translations.
Hermetica is considered to be the Wisdom of Antiquity because the knowledge it offers transcends time. The principles of these sacred writings are as applicable today as they were thousands of years ago when Thoth/Hermes first wrote them. This is because the teachings provide the foundational understanding of the creation and operation of the Cosmos. They also provide a foundational understanding of the creation and operation of humankind. The Hermetica reveals the Truth of the Light, and provides the steps and the processes necessary for the spiritual evolution of human consciousness. Therefore, the knowledge of the Hermetica aligns with the duality of the Cosmos. It is two-fold. It’s both a science and an art. The science teaches the fundamentals and absolutes of the Cosmos. The art teaches the philosophic approach to life, and reveals how a human can attain the state of spiritual enlightenment.
Throughout the ages there have always been the truth seekers who were willing to acknowledge the sovereignty of the ethereal over the earthly. Seekers who sought to understand the science that doesn’t follow the fundamentals of traditional science. Seekers who desired to gain a deeper understanding into the workings of the Cosmos, and who used the knowledge of this supreme science as the foundation for metaphysics, chemistry, physics, astronomy, astrology, theurgy, cosmology, alchemy, and hermetic medicine.
Hermetic Science is the study of the relationships. The relationship between the intangible and the tangible, cause and the effect, thought and mind, and the relationship between the Cosmos and humankind. Its intent isn’t to discredit what traditional science has discovered, but to offer a broader and a more all-inclusive perspective of who we are, and our relationship with all that exists. The wisdom found in the principles of Hermetic Science addresses seven different aspects of life. These seven aspects are:
- Esoteric Cosmology – the study of the relationship between humankind, animals, plants and minerals, and the Cosmos
- Metaphysics – the study of the intangible aspect of all that exists
- Philosophy – the study of estimating values, and the desire to establish that it’s the intangible aspects of life and who we are that have the greatest value
- Psychology – the study of mental and emotional elements of humankind
- Epistemology – the study of consciousness itself, and seeks to answer the question whether consciousness exists without the human mind
- Aesthetics – the study of natural surroundings, and how they affect the ability for humankind to connect to the Divine Mind
- Physiology – the study between the relationship of function (physiology) and form (anatomy) of the physical body
There are other reasons why Hermetica is considered the supreme science.
- It’s the science of things both divine and human
- It’s the science of things plausible, and explains the connection between thought and manifestation
- It reveals the fundamentals of evolution, as well as the steps in the process
- It reveals the Universal Principles, the absolutes concerning the hierarchical attributes of the Cosmos, and the workings of the Cosmos
- It provides a foundational understanding of the creation and the function of the Cosmos
- It reveals that the Divine Source is everything and contains everything, and that the Cosmos and humankind are holograms of the Divine Source
- It explains the relationships between the Divine Source, the Cosmos, and all that exists.
- It discloses the steps of the alchemical process
- It reminds humankind of the importance of growing into the comprehension of the Truth of the Light, and teaches how to live the Truth of the Light in order to live a meaningful, purposeful, and spiritual life that’s in alignment with the workings of the Cosmos
Hermetic philosophy is a spiritual approach to living life. It’s about learning to live a quality of life that’s not possible through the constraints of human thinking. The purity of this philosophic approach reveals how to rise above mere opinions to experience the Divine Mind. When the Divine Mind rules human thinking we’re able to live a life free of confusion, and abundant with insight and clarity. We’re able to live a life rich with mystical understanding, and experience a profound sense of awe and wonderment of what being human means and offers.
The principles of Hermetica are intended to expand consciousness by teaching how to transform, transmute, and transcend thoughts and beliefs that create the false perceptions about ourselves and about life. Its principles reveal the steps that must be taken if the human mind is to move its thinking from ordinary consciousness (concerned only with earthly affairs), to non-ordinary consciousness (concerned primarily with the physical expression of the soul), to collective consciousness (the consciousness of the Divine Mind.) Hermetica refers to this collective consciousness as the Hermes Consciousness, and states it produces a heightened state of awareness, which allows the human mind to access the consciousness free of limitations, misconceptions, worries, and the minutiae of everyday life. The consciousness which lacks the struggles and suffering that are so common with earthly thinking.
According to Hermetica, Hermes Consciousness is a supranatural way of thinking that integrates the expressions of intuition, empathy, physical sensations, physical senses, words, images and symbols. Expressions supportive of heightened states of awareness, and shifts in consciousness. The teachings disclose how Hermes Consciousness hermetically seals the human mind from thoughts that keep it stagnant in limiting thinking, and that cause it to believe it’s separate from the Divine Mind.
The wisdom of Hermetica reminds us that without union with the Divine Mind:
- The human mind will remain a servant of the ego
- The inability to heighten mental awareness will keep the human mind trapped in earthly concerns
- The earthly reality will remain distorted and will be full of false illusions
- The ability to spiritually evolve will be difficult, hindered, and blocked
- The meaning of life and the understanding of human experiences will remain a mystery
- The Truth of the Light will remain hidden and buried within human fears and insecurities
Hermes Consciousness makes it possible for thoughts to flow at lightning speed from the mind to
the body, from the body to the soul, and the soul to the Divine Mind. Like the chemical element Mercury, Hermes Consciousness can’t be controlled or isolated once it merges with the Divine Mind. Thoughts will flow wherever the Divine Mind directs them. Small human thoughts will join with higher consciousness thoughts, and ultimately morph into thoughts of the Divine Mind.
It’s easy to recognize when the human mind is in the state of Hermes Consciousness because it’ll experience a sense of peace and gratification. The heart will fill with feelings of joy. A lighthearted perspective will drive thinking, increase awareness, and the mind will produce thoughts of growth and change. Imagination is activated, insights of intuition fill the mind, and both reveal possibilities and new ideas. The mind will quiet itself so, it can experience the deep appreciation for the connection and reverence with the Divine Mind. Hermetica calls this state of reverent connection the Hermes’ Silence.
The Student of Hermetica
The secret principles of the Hermetica have been passed down from generation to generation by teachers referred to as Ascended Masters. The Ascended Masters were mortal souls who attained mastery over their mind, and who had proven their worthiness in using the knowledge and wisdom of the Divine Mind for the good of humankind. These Ascended Masters would form secret societies and create Mystery Schools where students desiring to live their lives in alignment with the Universal Principles, and embody the Truth of the Light could learn how. These teachers would create rituals and initiations (rites of passage) that would prepare the students mentally, emotionally, physically, energetically, and spiritually for the responsibility of becoming custodians of such great and sacred work.
The student of its teachings was constantly cautioned to proceed slowly, and with patience as they moved forward in the alchemical process of forming union with the Divine Mind. They were tested when they completed each step in the process. This initiation (rite of passage) would measure their ability to move beyond the fears and limitations of the human mind, and their worthiness to serve the Divine Mind. If they passed the initiation they moved to the next step. If they failed, they would continue on that step until mastery over it was achieved. As stated in the Hermetica, complete embodiment and integration of the wisdom was the only way to transcend the limitations of the human mind so, it would become the Divine Mind.
The students of Hermetica took an oath of secrecy to not divulge its knowledge to those who weren’t ready to hear its truths. The sharing of the truths to the masses was punishable by exile or death. In addition to pledging their lives to the study of Hermetica, they also made a commitment to live the processes they learned, and to adhere to the four Hermetic tenets before they could embark on the study of this supreme science and philosophy. The four tenets are:
- Commitment of the time to study in-depth its contents, so they may look beyond the words, and uncover the philosophic truths buried within its words.
- The profound desire to learn and understand its principles because it’s only through the understanding of the principles could they integrate the wisdom of its teachings into their earthly way of thinking.
- The willingness to experiment and experience the alchemical steps taught in its principles because without experimentation they wouldn’t find the truths held inside the teachings nor would they be able to form union with the Divine Mind.
- Proving through the rites of passage their dedication to the study of Hermetica. Their openness to be shown the true nature of reality, and their devotion to the Divine Mind.
Once the student passed all of the twelve initiations, and proved their heart was free of ego and their mind free of human thinking, the student became an Adept. As an Adept, they received their divine mission, which was to share the Hermetic truths only with those who were open and ready to embark on their own path of spiritual enlightenment. For the Adepts, whose heart was pure and their mind the Divine Mind, they were invited to become spiritual teachers of Hermetica, and ultimately would become Ascended Masters.
Not All Will Come to Know and Understand Its Wisdom
The early origins of Hermetica are shrouded in mystery, and it’s written that only those who were awakened, and who were willing to dedicate their lives to the study of the Hermetica were invited to attend the Great Mystery Schools. Others were turned away, or would leave because they didn’t pass the initiations.
The basic teachings of Hermetica are amazingly simple, and its truths are available to all who read and study it. Yet, very few will come to discover the wisdom it contains or uncover the greatest truths offered to humankind. The teachings disclose that all humans have the capacity to form union with the Divine Mind, and to become an Adept. Yet, many will choose to remain limited and trapped in the world of earthly reality. Throughout the Hermetica, there are reminders and even warnings that there’s no greater mistake made by humans than to have the wisdom of the Divine Mind, and to not use it.
If this wisdom is so readily available why don’t more people come to know and live its truths? As written in the teachings it’s because that’s the way the Divine Source has dictated it. It isn’t meant to be easy. The Divine Source understands how comfortable it is for the human mind to fall into ignorance thinking, and how the confusion it creates can be a major stumbling block to the commitment required to live the truths of Hermetica. The Divine Source also understands that not all hearts will choose to be free of ego. Therefore, as history has shown, the human mind driven by ego will use the wisdom of the Hermetica for its own personal gain and power.
The Divine Source wants humans to learn how to move beyond their mortal selves. Learn how to find their answers within their own divine nature. The Divine Source knows that like attracts like, and if a soul is to become its immortal self in the physical body, then it must accept, embrace, and live its Godlikeness.
Hermetica reminds humankind that the path of spiritual enlightenment requires dedication, devotion, unwavering commitment, experimentation, releasing the demands and opinions of the ego, and banishing the fears and insecurities that mislead the human mind. Fears and insecurities that keep it stuck in limited thinking. Transcending human thinking requires practice and perseverance, and the ability to relinquish all the mind thinks is truth and reality. It requires trusting the Divine Mind to guide thinking to the truths, and the reality of the invisible and intangible.
When the Hermetica states not all will come to know and understand its wisdom, it isn’t implying that its wisdom is available only to the souls who have been prechosen by the Divine Source to study it. It also isn’t guaranteeing that all students who study the Hermetica will become Adepts. Its teachings remind us that becoming an Adept is based on the choices made, and what’s done with those choices. Not all will come to know its truths because they must make a vow to know it, be it, and live it. They must understand the great responsibility that comes with it.
The knowers of this wisdom are bound by the truths of Hermetica to serve as its earthly foundation, and to be of service to their fellow humans by bringing expression to its wisdom. The Ascended Masters are bound by the truths to create the sacred temples of learning, and to teach those who have proven their commitment to live its principles. Not an easy feat, especially in a world of naysayers and non-believers. Not easy in a reality that choses the needs of the one over the needs of the many.
This information is an extraction from Module Two – Hermetic Science…The Science of the Cosmos. It was created and written by Carol Ritberger PhD as part of the curriculum for the Advanced Studies Program for the Ritberger Institute of Esoteric Studies.