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This is just a few thoughts to kick start a general discussion on Theurgy. If possible can we stick to the subject and help each other develop a shared understanding of this important theme in the Hermetica. I am not claiming any exclusive knowledge or understanding so feel free to disagree with what I say if you wish :)





If the best description of reality given in the Hermetica is Spirit which is 'one and all' … then we can say that the Hermetic view is that all is Spirit which is unified (one) in the sense that there is nothing other than Spirit and all in the sense that everything is a precipitate of Spirit.


Spirit itself is a word connected with breath (as in aspiration) and denotes energy or power which is its own 'prime mover' … energy which does work, which changes, develops, transforms. The connection with breath is important and well known to anyone who practices qi gong.


So perhaps we can best describe reality as a field of Spirit, a field of energy, which precipitates the sense objects we perceive and is thus that which 'lies beneath (or above)" our ordinary experience of life. We can say that things, objects, trees, houses, people and so on are nothing but Spirit in a certain place and behaving in a particular manner.


Of course Spirit itself exists in ways far more subtle than the sense world and so we we can think of 'levels' at which Spirit is more a more closely attuned to itself. That is more freely responsive to its own inner movements than in its grossest expression in the form of sense objects.


At a high level Spirit exhibits its own essential qualities as what can be seen as intelligences or the essential energies which arise from it and thence pervade the cosmos. These are the gods. Here we can find a link from Hermeticism to the pagan Ancient World.


The pagan philosophy of the ancient world, far from being the superstitious nonsense that it is sometimes characterised as was actually what some have now called Polycentric Polytheism. That is the idea that the universe is actually composed of many powers (gods) all arising from and linked by the Spirit which is "one and all' or 'one and many'.


The Ancient Egyptians for instance saw the world as being composed of gods, or the souls of gods (which they called Neter - a word which means concealed power). So the sky is the soul (ba) of the goddess Nut. In the same way we could say that the universe is the product of and suffused by the field of Spirit and that the primary vibrational functions of that Spirit are the gods. In addition there are a myriad of actual and potential spiritual entities which the Spirit in its pure creativity pours forth. Deities of place, natural features such as trees, lakes and so on, as well as a hierarchy of possible vibrational activity between the 'highest' or most subtle and the 'lowest' and most gross.


By the rule 'as above so below' it is possible to invoke through correspondences these entities and intelligences. As with the other rule 'as without so within' to activate potentials within oneself for greater wisdom, abilities and powers in harmony with the Spirit.


Obviously there are dangers in invoking disharmony and harm. Hence the focus on proper preparation and procedure in all the works of the masters.

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