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Thread: "The Divine Pymander"

  1. #1
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    "The Divine Pymander"

    No other text has contributed more to my understanding of the universe than "The Divine Pymander". Not an alchemical text per se, but a work very relevant to Alchemy and furthering one's understanding Nature.

    I was surprised to search the forum (especially the Hermetics section) and not find a thread on this! In fact, only two times on this entire forum is "The Divine Pymander" even mentioned, and that was over 4 years ago by one member, Seeker of Truth.

    Has anyone else besides us read this? For those who have not gotten a chance to study this incredibly wonderful piece of literature overflowing with Truth, I recommend you do so right now!

    Read here: http://www.sacred-texts.com/eso/pym/

  2. #2
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    The whole corpus is beautiful.
    I assume that every person here has read it.

    I am making a lexicon for myself (by using 5 different academic translations in different languages)... because I never found a GOOD lexicon for the Corpus and the translations are very unclear without a good lexicon (I am making it for Spanish readers -friends, no intention of publishing it because it's quite informal and simply a "guide" to understand some issues which are VERY unclear in the translations).

    With a good lexicon, it is VERY interesting to compare it with the Chaldean Oracles, Plotinus and the Christian Gnostic texts... because these sources have a similar logic (a neo-platonic logic), but the use of the terms is very different. It is very interesting to compare the idea of "Hen" (one), "Nous" (Intellect), Logos (Word, Sense, Reason), Chora (Matter), Soma (Body) in all these sources... because they may look as if it was "the same thing with a different symbolism", but they involve very different perspectives.

    I.e, I would say that Hermeticism is a Religion of the Nous... Whilst in Christian Gnosticism the Nous was somehow *replaced* by the Logos... whilst some ideas of the Corpus are very confusing in the translations and with a proper Lexicon it becomes amazing (i.e, most translators decided to say that there is no void and everything is filled with Air, whilst other say that everything is filled with "soul"... which is quite confusing until you realize that the idea is that everything is filled with "psyche").

    A GOOD study of the corpus leads to a very interesting way of understanding some alchemical texts and even some texts that repeat mistakes due to bad translations.
    (the example I posted above is just an example, but a lot of authors confused the "air" with the "psyche").

    I still have not finished my lexicon and it involves some speculation and even some "betrayals" to the text, since I'm taking everything to Greek... and finding where each terms appear and how it "works" in the text.

    Or it's interesting to compare it with other texts, like the Gospel of John: " In the beginning was the Word (Logos), and the Word (Logos) was with God (Theos), and the Word (Logos) was God (Theos). 2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life (Zoe), and that life was the light (Fos) of all mankind."... An *Hermeticist* would NOT agree... and the issue is not Christ or Jesus, but that the Logos does not have that role in the "Cosmogenesis" of the Corpus Hermeticum (which gets closer to some ideas of Philo of Alexandria in that sense).

  3. #3
    I love "the mind to Hermes", one of my favorite texts. I forget which one it is, but Hermes tells a man to look inside a barrel and to tell him whats inside of it. The man sees nothing inside and says "there is nothing inside the barrel", Hermes then tells him "is air not a thing?" or something a long those lines. He was proving to the man that there was no such thing as nothing. Something has existed and always will exist.
    Last edited by ArcherSage; 10-28-2016 at 12:00 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ArcherSage View Post
    I love "the mind to Hermes", one of my favorite texts. I forget which one it is, but a Hermes tells a man to look inside a barrel and to tell him whats inside of it. The man sees nothing inside and says "there is nothing inside the barrel", Hermes then tells him "is air not a thing?" or something a long those lines. He was proving to the man that there was no such thing as nothing. Something has existed and always will exist.
    EXACTLY... and that's what I was talking about in the previous post. The "barrel" is NOT filled with "air", but with "Psyche"... that's one of the problems of the translations... and why I am doing (slowly) my own lexicon.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by zoas23 View Post
    The "barrel" is NOT filled with "air", but with "Psyche"...
    There is no barrel... The barrel is a Knowable Nothing

    But this 'Nothing' is filled with Something, with Something Real, Something UN-Knowable to perception - until rendered Knowable by the Alchemist who is awakening from The Dream.

    Quoth 'Number Two' (from 'The Prisoner' TV series remake):

    It's a Nothing

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andro View Post
    There is no barrel... The barrel is a Knowable Nothing

    But this 'Nothing' is filled with Something, with Something Real, Something UN-Knowable to perception - until rendered Knowable by the Alchemist who is awakening from The Dream.

    Quoth 'Number Two' (from 'The Prisoner' TV series remake):
    Yes, you are right... and yet my comment still stands.
    Your interpretation of the Corpus Hermeticum (though I know that this is your interpretation of life itself) is correct. The Corpus has a strong influence of Plato and thus the matter is not considered exactly as a "reality".

    HOWEVER the Corpus contains a very nice "chain"

    What you call "Un-created", "un-knowable", etc in different threads is called "Nous Authentikos" (The Authentic Intellect)... but the word "Authentikos" is VERY interesting, because it's the opposite of fake, but it is the prefix "auto" ("self", but in the sense of "self-taught", "self-love", etc... as a prefix... not "the Self") + "Hentes" ("Being")...

    Thus it's the "Intellect that is a Self-Being"... or a better translation would be that it's "un-created", that it exists by itself.

    This "Un-created Intellect" has a vehicle, which is the "LOGOS" (sense, reason, word)...

    The "LOGOS" has a vehicle too: the "Psyche" (Soul... and not "air")

    And the "Psyche" has a vehicle too: Chora (matter) and Soma (body)

    So there is a "chain" that transmits the "un-created intellect" (or mind) to the "Sense / Reason"... and the "Sense" to the "Soul"... and the "Sould" to the "matter".

    The theory of the "vehicles" is VERY important in the CH... and yet the translators often make it very hard to understand.

    This specific passage of the book that I was talking with ArcherSage doesn't stress the point of the "unreality" of matter, but focuses on the idea of the things that seem "empty" and Hermes explains that it's a bad perception, that they are filled with Psyche (Soul)... and then explains how the Psyche carries the Logos and how the Logos carries the Nous. In some way it is similar to the Golden Chain of Homer... and gives the idea that even the matter contains some "Nous" (a small amount) because of this "chain" in which each "link" carries some of the previous one. That idea, I like it a lot.

    Your interpretation is correct, but somehow UN-related to this specific part of the Corpus (though it's correct with the idea that the Corpus offers, since the influence of Plato and Gnosticism is very obvious in it and what you explained condenses its meaning as a whole, but I also like to analyze it, as to use a modern expression, in an Hermeneutical way).

    Then again, reading your interpretations is always very revealing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by zoas23 View Post
    Yes, you are right... and yet my comment still stands.
    We can both be right

    Quote Originally Posted by zoas23 View Post
    Your interpretation is correct, but somehow UN-related to this specific part of the Corpus
    I was talking about the VR Corpus of the barrel

    And yes, the translation/interpretation as 'Air' is philosophically unsettling - with 'Air', we are still in the realm of commonly knowable 'matter'.

    Quote Originally Posted by zoas23 View Post
    Then again, reading your interpretations is always very revealing.
    Of course it is

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andro View Post
    We can both be right
    Two Leos can't get along, you know it!!! hahaha...

    Quote Originally Posted by Andro View Post
    I was talking about the VR Corpus of the barrel

    And yes, the translation/interpretation as 'Air' is philosophically unsettling - with 'Air', we are still in the realm of commonly knowable 'matter'.
    Yeah, that's the overall sense... but this specific part doesn't deal with that idea so much, as it deals with the idea of the "chain", which is "the other side of the coin".

    It would be like a "BUT" (though I know you know this "BUT")... i.e, "The barrel isn't real, BUT through the chains of Nous-Logos-Psyche-Matter, it contains a *bit* of Nous (the un-created ultimate reality)". I feel this "BUT" is also important in the CH.

    And, yeah, I would personally slap in the face those who translated "Psyche" as "Air" and created a lot of confusion. It's funny that sometime we go back to the language in which a text was written and it says something 100% different than what we we have always read in our "usual" translation (I know a great example of it, but I can't say it here as to avoid offending the translator, who may be here).

    Quote Originally Posted by Andro View Post
    Of course it is
    Hahahahaa... You handsome devil!

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