Hermetic Rebirth and the Cave of Initiation

  Hermetism is often and wrongly confused with Gnosticism, which similarly originated in Egypt in roughly the same era. For present purposes, a few salient points of contrast will suffice. Like the God of Stoicism, the Hermetic God was omnipresent and omniscient through the material cosmos. In Gnosticism, by contrast, God was transcendent, and the … Continue reading Hermetic Rebirth and the Cave of Initiation

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We are bees of the invisible… Rilke from a letter to Halewicz

"We are bees of the invisible. We wildly collect the honey of the invisible, to store it in the great golden hives of the invisible." Rilke often refers to the invisible, especially in his Duino Elegies, which he wrote during a particularly mystical period of his life. In a letter to his Polish translator Witold … Continue reading We are bees of the invisible… Rilke from a letter to Halewicz

The Turning Sky | Lapham’s Quarterly

"The god Horus is a falcon (the word for which in hieroglyphs is qhr, the falcon’s cry). In the third surviving column of text, remarkably, the falcon is marked with a triangle, the hieroglyphic designation for the star Sirius. As if it were a mathematical proof unfolding before my eyes, I saw that if the … Continue reading The Turning Sky | Lapham’s Quarterly

Visualization in Medieval Alchemy – alchemy as a science and an art aimed at the transformation of species

In Arabic classifications of science and philosophy, which were adapted in the twelfth century, alchemy was defined as a sub-branch of natural philosophy (scientia naturalis), sharing this definition, above all, with medicine. Thus, about ten years after the first translation of an alchemical text into Latin (Morienus, De compositione alchimie), Dominic Gundissalinus described alchemy as … Continue reading Visualization in Medieval Alchemy – alchemy as a science and an art aimed at the transformation of species

Gerald Massey – Wikipedia

In regard to Ancient Egypt, Massey first published The Book of the Beginnings, followed by The Natural Genesis. His most prolific work is Ancient Egypt: The Light of the World, published shortly before his death. Like Godfrey Higgins a half-century earlier, Massey believed that Western religions had Egyptian roots. Massey wrote: The human mind has … Continue reading Gerald Massey – Wikipedia

The Hermetic Papers of A. E. Waite and his idea for The Hermetic Text Society

  ‘The Hermetic Text Society was a pipe-dream of Waite’s that never proceeded further than the issuing of this breathtaking prospectus’, A.E. Waite’s bio-bibliographer R.A. Gilbert intriguingly observed with reference to a 14-page pamphlet issued by Waite in 1907.  Searching the Internet for ‘The Hermetic Text Society’ only yields a few references, all to the … Continue reading The Hermetic Papers of A. E. Waite and his idea for The Hermetic Text Society

The Vessels of Hermes – an Alchemical Album (ca.1700)

The contents of Box 14 from the Manly Palmer Hall Collection of Alchemical Manuscripts, a huge collection of esoteric works amassed by Manly Palmer Hall, a Canadian-born author and mystic, perhaps most famous for his The Secret Teachings of All Ages (1928). Most of the material in the collection was acquired from Sotheby’s auctioneers on … Continue reading The Vessels of Hermes – an Alchemical Album (ca.1700)