"When the ears of the student are ready to hear, then cometh
the lips to fill them with Wisdom."--The Kybalion
If I could recommend one book to every student in every school, at any and every level, to study it would be the “THE KYBALION”. That book contains the knowledge of the Universe and teaches the foundation for all other subjects which are to be later learned.
The book is so profound that it forms the basis of our modern understanding of Reality and our Universe. If one truly learned the lessons of THE KYBALION one would be prepared to handle whatever life presents.
So let us now briefly study the basics of THE KYBALION, by studying Hermeticism, on which it is based.
In ancient Egypt dwelt the great Adepts and Masters in their Great Lodge of Lodges of the Mystics, who have never since been surpassed, and who seldom have been equaled since the days of the great Hermes Trismegistus.
At the doors of the great ancient Egyptian Temples there entered the Neophytes who afterward, as Hierophants, Adepts, and Masters (a/k/a “Magi”), traveled to the four corners of the Earth, carrying with them the precious knowledge which they were ready, anxious, and willing to pass on to those who were ready to receive the same.
Among these great Masters of Ancient Egypt was one that the other Great Masters hailed as "The Master of Masters." He was known as the great “Hermes Trismegistus” (“Hermes the Three Times Great”).
He was the father of the Occult Wisdom; the founder of Astrology and Alchemy. The details of his life story are long lost to history. His last physical appearance on Earth was in Egypt. The date of his last incarnation on this planet is not now known, but it has been fixed at the early days of the oldest dynasties of Egypt, long before the days of Moses.
Tradition has recorded that he lived three hundred years. The best authorities regard him as a contemporary of Abraham (the father of Judaism, Christianity and Islam), and some of the Jewish traditions go so far as to claim that Abraham acquired a portion of his mystic knowledge from Hermes himself.
Ancient Egyptian legends tell of “Tep Zepi”, or the “first time”. This is described as an age when “Sky Gods” came down to Earth and raised the land from mud and water. They supposedly flew through the air in flying “boats” and brought laws and wisdom to man through a royal line of Pharaohs.
The Egyptians deified Hermes –the man, and made him one of their nine principal gods and named him “Thoth”. Later, after his death, in Ancient Greece he was known as their god "Hermes” the god of wisdom. In ancient Rome he was known as the god “Mercury”.
For reference, there was a group of nine principal Gods in Egyptian mythology that were worshiped at Heliopolis. They were:
- The sun god Atum (a/k/a Ra);
- his children Shu (a/k/a Thoth) and Tefnut;
- their children Geb and Nut and
- their children Osiris, Isis, Seth, and Nephthys.
- Sometimes also included is the son of Osiris and Isis, Horus.
Thoth was depicted as a man with the head of an Ibis or Baboon. He is normally shown with a writing instrument in one hand an something to write on in the other. His wife was Ma'at and their offspring was Tut. His feminine counterpart was Seshat. His parents are not mentioned. The Egyptians did not think that their gods looked like people with animal heads .It is kind of like automobile symbolism where Mercedes-Bentz has a circle with a three lined star in it. No one thinks that a Mercedes automobile looks like its symbol , but the symbol is immediately identifiable with the make of vehicle. The same is true with the Ancient Egyptian gods and their representation of people with animal heads.
The great Grecian philosopher and mathematician, Pythagoras, traveled to Egypt and studied in their secret sacred temples whose High Priest taught the laws of the Universe as revealed by Hermes Trismegistus in the form of the Avatar of the Egyptian god Thoth. Pythagoras has been hailed as a genius of western civilization, however all of his theories and knowledge are nothing more than what he learned from the knowledge of Hermes Trismegistus, as taught in the Egyptian mystery schools.
Today the Secret Society of Freemasons teaches the basics of the Hermetic knowledge as the foundation of their Society. They teach that :
“Hermetic Philosophy is Operative Philosophy, and that means that the student of Hermeticism shall self-convert into an operator of his own reality, into a maker, into a transformer of those conditions which limit and imprison him on a daily basis.
With an elevated level of conscience, the Hermetist, helping himself with The Seven Universal Principles known in The Kybalion, can transmute the external conditions of his life, just as well as the limitations and defects of his personality, until reaching a True Liberation.”
In 1945, Hermetic texts were found near the Egyptian town Nag Hammadi. One of these texts had the form of a conversation between Hermes and Asclepius. A second text (titled On the Ogdoad and Ennead) told of the Hermetic mystery schools. It was written in the Coptic language, the latest and final form in which the Egyptian language was written.
In Hermeticism, the ultimate reality is referred to variously as God, the All, or the One. Its philosophy teaches that there is one transcendent God, or Absolute, in which we and the entire Universe participate. It also subscribes to the idea that other beings, such as Aeons, Angels and Elementals, exist within the Universe. All of which is remarkably similar to Gnosticism which adopted Hermeticism as its basic philosophy.
The Hermetists of Egypt were the original alchemists, astrologers and psychologists. Hermes was the founder of those schools of thought. From astrology has grown modern astronomy; from alchemy has grown modern chemistry; from the mystic psychology has grown the modern psychology of the schools.
To this day, we use the term "hermetic" in the sense of "secret"; "sealed so that nothing can escape";( i.e. “sealed in a hermetic jar on Funk and Wagnall’s porch” etc.), and this by reason of the fact that the followers of Hermes always observed the principle of secrecy in their teachings (i.e.- a secret doctrine). They did not believe in "casting pearls before swine," but rather held to the teaching "milk for babes"; "meat for strong men,” all of which said maxims had been used by the Egyptians for centuries before the Christian era, where those same sayings are commonly found in the Bible.
Hermeticists believe in a prisca theologia, the doctrine that there is a single, true theology exists, that it exists in all religions, and that it was given by God to man in antiquity. In order to demonstrate the truth of the prisca theologia doctrine, Christians appropriated the Hermetic teachings.
In THEOSOPHY we represent the prisca theologia doctrine by adopting as our motto:
“There is no religion higher than truth.”
THE BOOK OF THE HERMETICSTS
In the early days, there was a compilation of certain Basic Hermetic Doctrines, verbally passed on from teacher to student, which was known as "THE KYBALION," the exact significance and meaning of the term has been lost for centuries.
Its precepts had never been written down, or printed, until modern times. It was merely a collection of verbal maxims, axioms, and precepts, which were non-understandable to outsiders, but which were readily understood by students, after they had been explained and exemplified by the Hermetic Initiates to their Neophytes.
The oldest copy we have of the Emerald Tablet ( which later became a part of the Kybalion) is in Arabic, and that copy claims to be a translation of Greek. To read it in English requires translation, and deep theological, philosophical and esoteric works are often difficult to translate. Those teachings constituted the basic principles of "The Art of Hermetic Alchemy," which, contrary to the general belief, dealt in the mastery of Mental Forces, rather than the Material Elements.
The legends of the "Philosopher's Stone" which would turn base metal into Gold through transmutation , was an allegory relating to Hermetic Philosophy, readily understood by all students of true Hermeticism.
So that according to the Hermetic Teachings, the passages of this book, relayed to those ready for the instruction, will attract the attention of those ready to Teach. And, likewise, when the pupil is ready to receive the Truth, then will this little book come to him, or her.
The old saying was that the Hermetic Principle of Cause and Effect, in its aspect of The Law of Attraction, “…will bring lips and ear together--pupil and book in company”. All of which is very similar to Buddha’s teaching that “When the student is ready, the Master will find him”.
THE SEVEN HERMETIC PRINCIPLES
"The Principles of Truth are Seven; he who knows these,
understandingly, possesses the Magic Key before whose
touch all the Doors of the Temple fly open."--The Kybalion.
The Seven Hermetic Principles, upon which the entire Hermetic Philosophy is based, are as follows:
1. The Principle of Mentalism.
2. The Principle of Correspondence.
3. The Principle of Vibration.
4. The Principle of Polarity.
5. The Principle of Rhythm.
6. The Principle of Cause and Effect.
7. The Principle of Gender.
These Seven Principles will be discussed and explained as we proceed. They are:
1.The Principle of Mentalism
"THE ALL IS MIND; The Universe is Mental."--The Kybalion.
"THE ALL creates in its Infinite Mind countless Universes,
which exist for aeons of Time--and yet, to THE ALL, the
creation, development, decline and death of a million Universes
is as the time of the twinkling of an eye."--The Kybalion.
"The Infinite Mind of THE ALL is the womb of Universes."--The Kybalion.
Hermes Trismegistus taught that all of the Universe was just a “thought” (a/k/a consciousness). Today religion, philosophy and science are all coming together in the understanding that he Universe may be just a thought, an illusion of reality, but it is real because it is the only “reality” that we know.
This Principle teaches that death is not real, even in the Relative sense--it is but Birth to a new life and we shall go on, and on, and on, to higher and still higher planes of life, for Aeons upon Aeons of time. The Universe is our home, and we shall explore its farthest recesses before the end of Time. We are dwelling in the Infinite Mind of THE ALL, and our possibilities and opportunities are infinite, both in time and space. And at the end of the Grand Cycle of Aeons, when THE ALL shall draw back into itself all of its creations--we will go gladly for we will then be able to know the Whole Truth of being At One with THE ALL.
The first thought that comes to one who thinks deeply, after he realizes the Truth that the Universe is a Mental Creation of THE ALL, is that the Universe and all that it contains is a mere illusion or Maya ; an unreality; against which idea our instincts revolt. But this, like all other great Truths, must be considered both from the Absolute and the Relative points of view.
From the Absolute viewpoint the Universe is in the nature of an illusion, a dream, a phantasmagoria, as compared to THE ALL in itself. We recognize this even in our ordinary view, for we speak of the world as "a fleeting show", "a ride" that comes and goes, is born and dies--for the element of impermanence and change, finiteness and unsubstantiality, must ever be connected with the idea of a created Universe when it is contrasted with the idea of THE ALL, no matter what may be our beliefs concerning the nature of both. Philosopher, metaphysician, scientist and theologian all agree upon this idea, and the thought is found in all forms of philosophical thought and religious conceptions, as well as in the theories of the respective schools of metaphysics and theology.
We do not live in a world of dreams, but in a Universe which while relative, is real so far as our lives and actions are concerned. Our business in the Universe is not to deny its existence, or to spend all of our time trying to figure it out, but to LIVE while we are alive, using the Laws to rise from lower to higher--living on, doing the best that we can under the circumstances arising each day, and living, so far as is possible, to our biggest ideas and ideals. The true Meaning of Life is not known to men on this plane if, to any--but the highest authorities, and our own intuitions, teach us that we will make no mistake in living up to the best that is in us, so far as is possible, and realizing the Universal tendency in the same direction in spite of apparent evidence to the contrary. We are all on The Path--and the road leads upward ever, with frequent resting places.
2. The Principle of Correspondence
"That which is Below corresponds to that which is Above,
and that which is Above corresponds to that which is Below,
to accomplish the miracle of the One Thing."--The Kybalion & The Emerald Tablet
The Emerald Tablet, also known as the Smaragdine Tablet, or Tabula Smaragdina, is a compact and cryptic piece of the Hermetica reputed to contain the secret of the prima materia and its transmutation. It includes the above axiom and it was highly regarded by European alchemists as the foundation of their art and its Hermetic tradition. The original source of the Emerald Tablet is uncertain. However, as the story is told in legend, this tablet was found by Alexander the Great at Hebron in the tomb of Hermes.
The layers of meaning in the Emerald Tablet have been associated with the creation of the philosopher's stone, as well as with other esoteric ideas. Although Hermes Trismegistus is the author named in the text, its first known appearance is in a book written in Arabic between the sixth and eighth centuries. The text was first translated into Latin in the twelfth century. Numerous translations, interpretations and commentaries followed.
A translation by Sir Isaac Newton of the Hermetic Axiom is found among his alchemical papers that are currently housed in King's College Library, Cambridge University. It reads as follows:
“Tis true without lying, certain & most true.
That which is below is like that which is above & that which is above is like that which is below to do the miracles of one only thing
And as all things have been & arose from one by the meditation of one: so all things have their birth from this one thing by adaptation.
The Sun is its father, the moon its mother, the wind hath carried it in its belly, the earth is its nurse.
The father of all perfection in the whole world is here.
Its force or power is entire if it be converted into earth.
Separate thou the earth from the fire, the subtle from the gross sweetly with great industry.
It ascends from the earth to the heaven & again it descends to the earth & receives the force of things superior & inferior.
By this means you shall have the glory of the whole world
& thereby all obscurity shall fly from you.
Its force is above all force. For it vanquishes every subtle thing & penetrates every solid thing.
So was the world created.”
In Christianity the same principle appears in the Gospel of Philip from the Nag Hammadi library.
[The Lord] said, “I came to make the things below like the things above,
and the things outside like those inside.
I came to unite them in one place.” -- Gospel of Philip, 67:30-35.
In the "Secret Doctrine" Blavatsky states the Hermetic Axiom as follows"
As in the Inner, so is the Outer; as is the Great, so is the Small;
as it is above, so it is below;
there is but ONE LIFE AND LAW;
and he that worketh it is ONE.
Nothing is Inner, nothing is Outer;
nothing is GREAT, nothing is Small;
nothing is High, nothing is Low, in the Divine economy. -- "The Secret Doctrine"
The great Second Hermetic Principle embodies the truth that there is a harmony, agreement, and correspondence between the several planes of Manifestation, Life and Being. This truth is a truth because all that is included in the Universe emanates from the same source, and the same laws, principles, and characteristics apply to each unit, or combination of units, of activity, as each manifests its own phenomena upon its own plane.
For the purpose of convenience of thought and study, the Hermetic Philosophy considers that the Universe may be divided into three great classes of phenomena, known as the Three Great Planes, namely:
1. The Great Physical Plane.
2. The Great Mental Plane.
3. The Great Spiritual Plane.
The Hermetists sub-divide each of the Three Great Planes into Seven Minor Planes, and each of these latter are also sub-divided into seven sub-planes, all divisions being more or less arbitrary, shading into each other, and adopted merely for convenience of scientific study and thought.
The Great Mental Plane comprises those forms of "living things" known to us in ordinary life, as well as certain other forms not so well known except to the occultist. A classification of the Seven Minor Mental Planes is more or less arbitrary (unless accompanied by elaborate and complicated explanations which are beyond to the purpose of this particular study).
All that we can say is that the Seven Minor Planes of the Great Spiritual Plane (each Minor Plane having its seven sub-divisions) comprise Beings possessing Life, Mind and Form as far above that of Man of to-day as the latter is above the earth-worm, mineral or even certain forms of Energy or Matter. The Life of these Beings so far transcends ours, that we cannot even think of the details of the same; their minds so far transcend ours, that to them we scarcely seem to "think," and our mental processes seem almost akin to material processes; the Matter of which their forms are composed is of the highest Planes of Matter, some are even said to be "clothed in Pure Energy."
On the Seven Minor Planes of the Great Spiritual Plane exist Beings of whom we may speak as Angels; Archangels; Demi-Gods. On the lower Minor Planes dwell those great souls whom we call Masters and Adepts. Above them come the Great Hierarchies of the Angelic Hosts, unthinkable to man; and above those come those who may without irreverence be called "The Gods," so high in the scale of Being are they, their being, intelligence and power being akin to those attributed by the races of men to their conceptions of Deity.
These Beings are beyond even the highest flights of the human imagination, the word "Divine" being the only one applicable to them. Many of these Beings, as well as the Angelic Host, take the greatest interest in the affairs of the Universe and play an important part in its affairs. These Unseen Divinities and Angelic Helpers extend their influence freely and powerfully, in the process of Evolution, and Cosmic Progress. Their occasional intervention and assistance in human affairs have led to the many legends, beliefs, religions and traditions of the race, past and present. They have superimposed their knowledge and power upon the world, again and again, all under the Law of THE ALL. This latter Principle being very similar in belief to Gnosticism.
3. The Principle of Vibration
"Nothing rests; everything moves; everything vibrates."--The Kybalion.
Today in modern Physics this idea is represented by “String Theory” which holds that subatomic particles do not exist. Instead, tiny pieces of vibrating strings too small to be observed by today's instruments replace them and that all objects in our Universe are composed of these vibrating filaments (strings) and membranes (branes) of energy.
The great Third Hermetic Principle--the Principle of Vibration--embodies the truth that Motion is manifest in everything in the Universe--that nothing is at rest and that everything moves, vibrates, and circles. This Hermetic Principle was recognized by some of the early Greek philosophers who embodied it in their systems. But, then, for centuries it was lost sight of by the thinkers outside of the Hermetic ranks. But in the Nineteenth Century physical science re-discovered the truth and the Twentieth Century scientific discoveries have added additional proof of the correctness and truth of this ancient Hermetic doctrine. (i.e. string theory and relativity).
Modern science believes that everything in the Universe is made up of tiny strings that vibrate at different frequencies. It is called ‘String Theory” in modern Physics. The Hermetic Teachings are that not only is everything in constant movement and vibration, but that the "differences" between the various manifestations of the universal power are due entirely to the varying rate and mode of vibrations. Not only this, but that even THE ALL, in itself, manifests a constant vibration of such an infinite degree of intensity and rapid motion that it may be practically considered as at rest, the teachers directing the attention of the students to the fact that even on the physical plane a rapidly moving object (such as a revolving wheel) seems to be at rest. The Teachings are to the effect that Spirit is at one end of the Pole of Vibration, the other Pole being certain extremely gross forms of Matter. Between these two poles are millions upon millions of different rates and modes of vibration.
Quantum Physics has postulated that all that we call Matter and Energy are but "modes of vibratory motion," and some of the more advanced scientists are rapidly moving toward the positions of the occultists who hold that the phenomena of Mind are likewise modes of vibration or motion.
All particles of Matter are in circular movement, from corpuscle to suns. The planets revolve around suns, and many of them turn on their axes. The suns move around greater central points, and these are believed to move around still greater, and so on, ad infinitum. The molecules of which the particular kinds of Matter are composed are in a state of constant vibration and movement around each other and against each other. The molecules are composed of Atoms, which, likewise, are in a state of constant movement and vibration.
The atoms are composed of "electrons", "neutrons", "protons," "quarks", etc., which also are in a state of rapid motion, revolving around each other, and which manifest a very rapid state and mode of vibration. And, so we see that all forms of Matter manifest Vibration, in accordance with the Hermetic Principle of Vibration.
Every thought, emotion or mental state has its corresponding rate and mode of vibration. And by an effort of the will of the person, or of other persons, these mental states may be reproduced, just as a musical tone may be reproduced by causing an instrument to vibrate at a certain rate--just as color may be reproduced in the same may.
By a knowledge of the Principle of Vibration, as applied to Mental Phenomena, one may polarize his mind at any degree he wishes, thus gaining a perfect control over his mental states, moods, etc. In the same way he may affect the minds of others, producing the desired mental states in them.
A little reflection on what we have said will show that the Principle of Vibration underlies the wonderful phenomena of the power manifested by the Masters and Adepts, who are able to apparently set aside the Laws of Nature, but who, in reality, are simply using one law against another; one principle against others; and who accomplish their results by changing the vibrations of material objects, or forms of energy, and thus perform what are commonly called "miracles."
4. 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
The great Fourth Hermetic Principle--the Principle of Polarity embodies the truth that all manifested things have "two sides"; "two aspects"; "two poles"; a "pair of opposites," with manifold degrees between the two extremes. The old paradoxes, which have ever perplexed the mind of men, are explained by an understanding of this Principle. Man has always recognized something akin to this Principle, and has endeavored to express it by such sayings, maxims and aphorisms as the following: "Everything is and isn't, at the same time"; "all truths are but half-truths"; "every truth is half-false"; "there are two sides to everything"--"there is a reverse side to every shield," etc. Just think of poles of electricity as in a car battery.
The teachers claim that illustrations of this Principle may be had on every hand, and from an examination into the real nature of anything. They begin by showing that Spirit and Matter are but the two poles of the same thing, the intermediate planes being merely degrees of vibration. They show that THE ALL and The Many are the same, the difference being merely a matter of degree of Mental Manifestation. Thus the LAW and Laws are the two opposite poles of one thing.
The Hermetic Teachings are to the effect that the difference between things seemingly diametrically opposed to each other is merely a matter of degree. It teaches that "the pairs of opposites may be reconciled," and that "thesis and anti-thesis are identical in nature, but different in degree"; and that the "universal reconciliation of opposites" is effected by a recognition of this Principle of Polarity. The teachers claim that illustrations of this Principle may be had on every hand, and from an examination into the real nature of anything. They begin by showing that Spirit and Matter are but the two poles of the same thing, the intermediate planes being merely degrees of vibration. They show that THE ALL and The Many are the same, the difference being merely a matter of degree of Mental Manifestation. Thus the LAW and Laws are the two opposite poles of one thing. Likewise, PRINCIPLE and Principles. Infinite Mind and finite minds.
Light and Darkness are poles of the same thing, with many degrees between them. The musical scale is the same--starting with "C" you move circular until you reach "C" again and so on. The scale of color is the same-higher and lower vibrations being the only difference between high violet and low red. Large and Small are relative. So are Noise and Quiet; Hard and Soft follow the rule. Likewise Sharp and Dull. Positive and Negative are two poles of the same thing, with countless degrees between them.
Good and Bad are not absolute--we call one end of the scale Good and the other Bad, or one end Good and the other Evil, according to the use of the terms. A thing is "less good" than the thing higher in the scale; but that "less good" thing, in turn, is "more good" than the thing next below it--and so on, the "more or less" being regulated by the position on the scale.
Things belonging to different classes cannot be transmuted into each other, but things of the same class may be changed, that is, may have their polarity changed.
5. 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 swing to the left; rhythm compensates."--The Kybalion.
This is similar to the Universal LAW OF CYCLES.
The great Fifth Hermetic Principle--the Principle of Rhythm-embodies the truth that in everything there is manifested a measured motion; a to-and-from movement; a flow and inflow; a swing forward and backward; a pendulum-like movement; a tide-like ebb and flow; a high-tide and a low- tide; between the two-poles manifest on the physical, mental or spiritual planes. The Principle of rhythm is closely connected with the Principle of Polarity described in the preceding chapter.
There is always an action and reaction (transmutated by Sir Isaac Newton to be his Third Law of Motion-"For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction); an advance and a retreat; a rising and a sinking; manifested in all of the airs and phenomena of the Universe. Suns, worlds, men, animals, plants, minerals, forces, energy, mind and matter, yes, even Spirit, manifests this Principle. The Principle manifests in the creation and destruction of worlds; in the rise and fall of nations; in the life history of all things; and finally in the mental states of Man.
Rhythm manifests between the two poles established by the Principle of Polarity. This does not mean, however, that the pendulum of Rhythm swings to the extreme poles, for this rarely happens; in fact, it is difficult to establish the extreme polar opposites in the majority of cases. But the swing is ever "toward" first one pole and then the other. It can also be referred to as the Law of Cycles.
The man who enjoys keenly, is subject to keen suffering; while he who feels but little pain is capable of feeling but little joy. The pig suffers but little mentally, and enjoys but little--he is compensated. And on the other hand, there are other animals who enjoy keenly, but whose nervous organism and temperament cause them to suffer exquisite degrees of pain and so it is with Man. But the Hermetists go still further in this matter. They teach that before one is able to enjoy a certain degree of pleasure, he must have swung as far, proportionately, toward the other pole of feeling.
6. The Principle of Cause and Effect
"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."--The Kybalion.
NOTE: this is very similar to the Hindu and Buddhist concept of KARMA.
The great Sixth Hermetic Principle--the Principle of Cause and Effect--embodies the truth that Law pervades the Universe; that nothing happens by Chance; that Chance is merely a term indicating cause existing but not recognized or perceived; that phenomena is continuous, without break or exception.
The Principle of Cause and Effect underlies all scientific thought, ancient and modern, and was enunciated by the Hermetic Teachers in the earliest days. The underlying Principle of Cause and Effect has been accepted as correct by practically all the thinkers of the world worthy of the name. To think otherwise would be to take the phenomena of the Universe from the domain of Law and Order, and to relegate it to the control of the imaginary something which men have called "Chance" and “Chance” does not exist in Hermeticism.
The Masters, knowing the rules of the game, rise above the plane of material life, and placing themselves in touch with the higher powers of their nature, dominate their own moods, characters, qualities, and polarity, as well as the environment surrounding them and thus become Movers in the game, instead of Pawns-Causes instead of Effects. The Masters do not escape the Causation of the higher planes, but fall in with the higher laws, and thus master circumstances on the lower plane. They thus form a conscious part of the Law, instead of being mere blind instruments. While they serve on the Higher Planes, they Rule on the Material Plane.
7. The Principle of Gender
"Gender is in everything; everything has its Masculine
and Feminine Principles; Gender manifests on all
The great Seventh Hermetic Principle--the Principle of Gender--embodies the truth that there is Gender manifested in everything--that the Masculine and Feminine principles are ever present and active in all phases of phenomena, on each and every plane of life. At this point we think it well to call your attention to the fact that Gender, in its Hermetic sense, and Sex in the ordinarily accepted use of the term, are not the same.
We can rest calm and serene knowing that we are safe and protected by the Infinite Power of the FATHER-MOTHER MIND.
"Within the Father-Mother Mind, mortal children are at
"There is not one who is Fatherless, nor Motherless in the
The word "Gender" is derived from the Latin root meaning "to beget; to procreate; to generate; to create; to produce." A moment's consideration will show you that the word has a much broader and more general meaning than the term "Sex," the latter referring to the physical distinctions between male and female living things. Sex is merely a manifestation of Gender on a certain plane of the Great Physical Plane--the plane of organic life.
Something can be physically of one sex, but mentally another Gender.
If something is being classified as to type, the Gender must also be classified along with its other attributes.
A. THE LAW OF THE PARADOX
"The half-wise, recognizing the comparative unreality of
the Universe, imagine that they may defy its Laws--such
are vain and presumptuous fools, and they are broken against
the rocks and torn asunder by the elements by reason of
their folly. The truly wise, knowing the nature of the Universe,
use Law against laws; the higher against the lower; and by
the Art of Alchemy transmute that which is undesirable into
that which is worthy, and thus triumph. Mastery consists not
in abnormal dreams, visions and fantastic imaginings or
living, but in using the higher forces against the lower--escaping
the pains of the lower planes by vibrating on the higher.
Transmutation, not presumptuous denial, is the weapon of the
What Hermetists know as "the Law of Paradox" is an aspect of the Principle of Polarity. The Hermetic writings are filled with references to the appearance of the Paradox in the consideration of the problems of Life and Being. The Teachers are constantly warning their students against the error of omitting the "other side" of any question. And their warnings are particularly directed to the problems of the Absolute and the Relative, which perplex all students of philosophy, and which cause so many to think and act contrary to what is generally known as "common sense." And we caution all students to be sure to grasp the Divine Paradox of the Absolute and Relative, lest they become entangled in the mire of the Half-Truth.
B. THE LAW OF “THE ALL" IN ALL
"While All is in THE ALL, it is equally true that THE
ALL is in ALL. To him who truly understands this
truth hath come great knowledge."--The Kybalion.
There are many planes of Being--many sub-planes of Life--many degrees of existence in the Universe. And all depend upon the advancement of beings in the scale, of which scale the lowest point is the grossest matter, the highest being separated only by the thinnest division from the SPIRIT of THE ALL. And, upward and onward along this Scale of Life, everything is moving. All are on the Path, whose end is THE ALL. All progress is a Returning Home. All is Upward and Onward, in spite of all seemingly contradictory appearances. Such is the message of the Illumined.
We allude to the question which inevitably comes to the mind of all thinkers who have ventured to seek the Truth. The question is: "WHY does THE ALL create Universes" The question may be asked in different forms, but the above is the gist of the inquiry.
Strictly speaking, there cannot be said to be any "Reason" whatsoever for THE ALL to act, for a "reason" implies a "cause," and THE ALL is above Cause and Effect, except when it Wills to become a Cause, at which time the Principle is set into motion. So, you see, the matter is Unthinkable, just as THE ALL is Unknowable. Just as we say THE ALL merely "IS"--so we are compelled to say that "THE ALL ACTS BECAUSE IT ACTS." At the last, THE ALL is All Reason in Itself; All Law in Itself; All Action in Itself--and it may be said, truthfully, that THE ALL is Its Own Reason; its own Law; its own Act--or still further, that THE ALL; Its Reason; Its Act; is Law; are ONE, all being names for the same thing. In the opinion of those who are giving you these present lessons, the answer is locked up in the INNER SELF of THE ALL, along with its Secret of Being.
A LIST OF GENERAL HERMETIC AXIOMS
"The possession of Knowledge, unless accompanied by a
manifestation and expression in Action, is like the
hoarding of precious metals-a vain and foolish thing.
Knowledge, like wealth, is intended for Use. The Law of
Use is Universal, and he who violates it suffers by
reason of his conflict with natural forces."--The Kybalion.
The Hermetic Teachings, while always having been kept securely locked up in the minds of the fortunate possessors thereof, for reasons which we have already stated, were never intended to be merely stored away and secreted. The Law of Use is dwelt upon in the Teachings, as you may see by reference to the above quotation from The Kybalion, which states it forcibly.
Knowledge without Use and Expression is a vain thing, bringing no good to its possessor, or to the race. Beware of Mental Miserliness, and express into Action that which you have learned. Study the Axioms and Aphorisms, but practice them also.
Below are some of the more important Hermetic Axioms, from The Kybalion, Make these your own, and practice and use them, for they are not really your own until you have used them.
"To change your mood or mental state--change your
"Mind (as well as metals and elements) may be transmuted
from state to state; degree to degree, condition to
condition; pole to pole; vibration to vibration."--The Kybalion.
"Rhythm may be neutralized by an application of the Art
of Polarization."--The Kybalion.
“Do not make the mistake of supposing that the little world you see around you,
the Earth, which is a mere grain of dust in the Universe - is the Universe itself.
There are millions upon millions of such worlds, and greater.
And there are millions of millions of such Universes in existence
within the Infinite Mind of THE ALL”--The Kybalion.
“The present issues from the past, and the future from the present.
Everything is made one by this continuity.
Time is like a circle, where all the points are so linked that one cannot say where
it begins or ends, for all points precede and follow one another for ever.” --The Kybalion.
"Nothing escapes the Principle of Cause and Effect,
but there are many Planes of Causation,
and one may use the laws of the higher to overcome the laws of the lower." — The Kybalion.
"To destroy an undesirable rate of mental vibration,
put into operation the principle of Polarity and
concentrate upon the opposite pole to that which
you desire to suppress. Kill out the undesirable by
changing its polarity."--The Kybalion.
NOTE: You do not really destroy the Principle of Rhythm, for that is indestructible. You simply overcome one law by counter-balancing it with another and thus maintain an equilibrium. The laws of balance and counter-balance are in operation on the mental as well as on the physical planes, and an understanding of these laws enables one to seem to overthrow laws, whereas he is merely exerting a counterbalance
"Where fall the footsteps of the Master, the ears of those
ready for his Teaching open wide."--The Kybalion.
"When the ears of the student are ready to hear, then cometh
the lips to fill them with Wisdom."--The Kybalion.
"Nothing escapes the Principle of Cause and Effect,
but there are many Planes of Causation, and one may use
the laws of the higher to overcome the laws of the
“Nothing stands still - everything is being born, growing, dying -
the very instant a thing reaches its height, it begins to decline -
the law of rhythm is in constant operations....” --The Kybalion.
"The wise ones serve on the higher, but rule on the lower.
They obey the laws coming from above them, but on their own plane,
and those below them, they rule and give orders.
And, yet, in so doing, they form a part of the Principle, instead of opposing it.
The wise man falls in with the Law, and by understanding its movements
he operates it instead of being its blind slave.
Just as does the skilled swimmer turn this way and that way,
going and coming as he will, instead of being as the log which is carried here and there --
so is the wise man as compared to the ordinary man --
and yet both swimmer and log; wise man and fool, are subject to Law.
He who understands this is well on the road to Mastery." — The Kybalion.
In conclusion consider the Hermetic Axiom:
"True Hermetic Transmutation is a Mental Art."--The Kybalion.
"THE ALL is MIND; The Universe is Mental."--The Kybalion.
"In its Essence, THE ALL is UNKNOWABLE."--The Kybalion.
"But, the report of Reason must be hospitably received,
and treated with respect."--The Kybalion.
“The vice of the soul is ignorance. The virtue of soul is knowledge; for one who knows is good and revertant and already divine.” – The Kybalion.
NOTE: In order to achieve “Enlightenment” one must fully understand this principal, because:
“Everything is nothing, but nothing is everything, therefore everything is one” - Awareness of Nothing
Hermes was a man who lived during the dawn of the ancient history of humanity. He possessed incredible knowledge, which he acquired from some unknown source or teacher. Although he attained and taught this knowledge many of thousands of year ago, even before the first established civilizations, his teachings and knowledge can be found as the basis of every ancient and modern religion and also of every branch of science.
Perhaps that is why today many of the Hermetic Principles seem so "trite" or "common" , not because they are, but because the Truth of these thousands of years old teachings contain a "TRUTH" that is fundamental to all modern and ancient religions and sciences. It is simply that Hermeticism is familiar to us and we don't ever stop to think of the source of those beliefs.
Although we think of many ancient and modern philosophers as being great thinkers, we find that their theories are nothing more than the teachings of Hermes Trismegistus. In modern Physics there are theories of: Relativity, String Theory, Entanglement, Quantum Mechanics, etc. However, we can easily see that all of those theories were addressed and answered by Hermes Trismegistus thousands of years ago.
In Theosophy the book "The Secret Doctrine" by one of its principal founders , H.P. Blavatsky, is the MAGUM OPUS of all of her Theosophical works. Within it she describes the actual Secret Doctrine as:
1. "... the accumulated wisdom of the ages..." which has been passed on from civilization to civilization by higher and exalted beings.
2. The "Substance-Principle" which is present in every Atom of the Universe.(Principle becomes matter in the material Universe)
3. The Universe is neither Spirit nor Matter, but is both.
4. The Universe is illusion, but is a reality to conscious beings.
5. Everything in the Universe is conscious.
6. The Universe is constructed and guided from within, not from without.
Again Blavatsky is actually describing the teachings of Hermeticism as being the "Secret Doctrine" of Theosophy. Something which is both fitting and true.
The best way we could prepare ourselves for our journey through life, would be to learn and to fully understand and comprehend the Seven Principles of Hermeticism, along with the Theory of THE ALL and THE HERMETIC LAW OF TRANSMUTATION.
Thank you for taking the time to read this.
Scott Ramsey, January 4, 2019