Hermetica as a Religious Philosophy

Something I’ve been giving a lot thought to lately is the idea of Hermetica, or maybe better phrased the Hermetic philosophy, as a religious practice. Does this foundation of the western mystery tradition hold-up as a practice of religious devotion or in some ritual practice?

On the outside, i think I’ve wanted to think it does. That, at it’s core, one could utilize the ideas of the mysterious emerald tablet as a set of ideals that promote some kind of philosophical religious ideation. And, like the Christian Bible, the Hermetic texts could offer some degree of direction or ethos to inform and guide religious decision making. But, the more and more I’ve considered this, the more often I’ve come back to the decision that it doesn’t, or that it can’t.

As a teaching, Hermetica offers an interesting philosophical take on approaching the world. That it offers a syncretic zest to elevating above the fray of dogmatism, while itself establishing it’s own set of dogmas and thou shalt and shalt-nots.

It’s in these dogmas that, perhaps, the religion exists.

So then, should hermetic be re-imagined? Take the good, reject the bad and construct a new ethic of what it means to be Hermetic? It could keep the teachings of the Kybalion, and still layer in with the Rosicrucian or masonic ideas (it is, after all about initiation and seeing things from a different perspective not considered before). And why can’t it retain the syncretism of a trans polytheism as being adoptable under all faiths constructing a new layer or dynamic to understanding the god of Judaism, the god of Islam and the path if the Buddha.

It’s under this key aspect that always bring me back to the conclusion that Hermetica is, itself, the religion of religions. That it is the underlying philosophical bones of modernism itself in that while it’s teachings come from great antiquity, the ideas themselves find newer relevance the smaller the world gets — a condition we find the further along we get in the path of history. Hermeticism, then, is that closed loop of time, without beginning or end, looping back upon itself in a way that seems to be without beginning or end. It simply is.

And yet, all things start and stop, and start again as the forward motion of the universe continues. It is all and nothing at the same time. This is where my head is at in considering the place of Hermetica in the grand cosmic scheme of things. This is how I find validation in my ideas of it having fingers and thought in all aspects of religion, all aspects of life. Hermetic isn’t this, or that, it just is.And by being, it continues on to be re-imagined, changed and evolved into some other construct of it’s former self.

Which brings me back around full circle.

Lvx E Tenebris

I write this on the eve of the May Day pronouncement. Having just finished a final compilation of those who have chosen to be included as a Founder of this first circle, the count, excluding myself, stands at 33.

Concluding my tabulation, I took a moment to recount and affirm that number. Needless to say, it spoke to me, affirming for me the years of mental preparation that has lead up to this association.

First and foremost, welcome to this first loop of the Hermetic Circle.

In the days, weeks and months before us, this Circle will begin to take shape, providing greater illumination on its purpose and imparting some measure of wisdom for those who wish to receive it. Ultimately, this needs be an experiential group, one in which we work together to reach our aims.

So then, what are those aims?

As it was conceived, this Circle is bound by all traditions under the uniform acknowledgement that:

  • No one faith is absolute
  • All faiths are as one greater universal concept of the divine

With that in mind, I conceive the Hermetic Circle to be:

…an open society – open to all for the preservation and communication of the wisdom of the Emerald Tablet, Hermetica, the Kybalion, and the other Great Works of this philosophical tradition.

That it be a trans-polytheistic society, which is one that sees all faiths as ONE faith, where each is as valuable as any other, worthy of veneration and respect…

The outcome of this is a universal faith – A Hermetic Faith – that is the union of form and function of the wisdom traditions.

In preparation, your part at the start of this Great Work is simply to prepare a biographical statement about yourself by way of an introduction. It may be of whatever length you feel best suits an introduction of yourself, your journey to this destination, or the philosophical ethos that fuels your amity to the Hermetic tradition. Keep in mind; this is a correspondence circle of a sort so any energy you contribute this way will be returned in kind. Once written and received, our introductions will be published, with your permission, under your chosen name, in an on-line forum accessible only to us, the founding members of the Hermetic Circle. The home of this body of work will exist online at HermeticCircle.com

Moving forward, I propose we embark upon a series of group exercises that involve the study of certain texts and traditions that will frame this circle.

More details on this initial assignment will follow soon, but in the meantime I ask that you mentally (and perhaps literally) begin to pen your introduction.

Welcome to the Hermetic Circle.

Greg Stewart
Fiat LvX