One decade

A full decade has passed since the first posting on this site, the hermetic prayer Holy Art Thou.

A big thank you to all those who have visited this site, you are more than just traffic. As for me, I have been using the moniker Hermesphilus for quite a while now, the name consists of two words ‘Hermes’ and ‘philus’, so loosely translated Hermesphilus means ‘Hermes lover’.

Here is a possibly better translation of the prayer Holy Art Thou CH 01.31 from The Way of Hermes: New Translations of ‘The Corpus Hermeticum’ and The Definitions of Hermes Trismegistus to Asclepius by Clement Salaman (Author),‎ Dorine van Oyen (Author),‎ William D. Wharton (Author),‎ Jean-Pierre Mahe (Author)

Holy is God the Father of all
Holy is God who’s will is accomplished by his own powers
Holy is God who wills to be known and is known by those that are his own
Holy art thou who by the Word has united all that is
Holy art thou of whom all Nature became an image
Holy art thou whom Nature has not created
Holy art thou who is stronger than all power
Holy art thou who art higher than all pre-eminence
Holy art thou who surpasses praises

The reason for my preference for anonymity is simply because the nature of my business (that stuff that is supposed to generate income) is such that it is better for clients not to know about my personal worldview and philosophy. More specifically, the ignorant ‘knee-jerk’ reaction to things that people do not understand is not always the most conducive towards commerce.

So there you have it, know you know everything 😎

The psychedelic nature of Islamic art and architecture

Sam Woolfe is a London based freelance writer and blogger, yet this has not stopped him from sharing some interesting ideas and thoughts ;-)

Jalil Khayat Mosque

One that is certainly worth a read is The psychedelic nature of Islamic art and architecture where he takes a look at the psychedlic kaleidoscopic patterns which are found in Islamic art and architecture.

A common DMT experience is finding oneself in a vaulted dome structure. In DMT lexicon, ‘The Chrysthanemum’ is a gigantic, rotating, fractal flower that has a dome-like appearance. Terence McKenna said you could either pass through ‘The Chrysthanemum’ and enter hyperspace or stay put (if you didn’t take enough DMT). However, many DMT users also say the vaulted dome space is a revered destination and it’s where you go during a ‘breakthrough’ dose of DMT. McKenna himself called this post-Chrysthanemum place “the dome”, adding:

It’s softly lit, indirectly lit, and the walls—if such they be—are crawling with geometric hallucinations: very brightly colored, very iridescent with deep sheens and very high reflective surfaces. Everything is machine-like and polished and throbbing with energy.

Sam suggests:

It has been suggested that geometric hallucinations are a projection of the structure of our brain, stimulated in a variety of ways (e.g. drugs, conditions like migraine and epilepsy, near-death experiences, sensory deprivation, fasting, hypnagogia, and so on).

Nasir al-Mulk Mosque in Shiraz, Iran

I do agree that Islamic art and architecture are some of the finest traditional examples of this kind of aesthetic expression. Their striking similarty and resemblance to psychedelic experiences certainly suggests that they may have been inspired by entheogenics.

Graham St John (PhD) is Senior Research Fellow at the University of Fribourg, Switzerland. He is a cultural anthropologist specialising in event-cultures and entheogens. Take a few minutes and read his article The DMT Trip and the Mysteries of Hyperspace Travel on Chacruna, a Northern California group who strive to produce quality anthropological research on plant medicines and help propagate academic knowledge.

Hermetica in the World Tree of Religions

How do Hermeticism and the Hermetica feature in the global tree of religions.  Simon E Davies of Human Odyssey produces a few stunningly awesome evolutionary trees, the two that I will be referring to in this post are The Evolutionary Tree of Religion and The Evolutionary Tree of Myth & Religion.

Hermeticism, even thought not a qualified religion as such can be found mentioned on The Evolutionary Tree of Religion, while Hermetica itself is not mentioned it is shown as a dotted line connecting it to Egyptian beliefs.

The Evolutionary Tree of Religion

The Evolutionary Tree of Life Simon E Davies

Hermetica and Hermeticism are neither Myth nor Religion and again it makes sense to me why they would not feature on The Evolutionary Tree of Myth & Religion.

The Evolutionary Tree of Myth and Religion

The World Religions Tree is an awesome work that was apparently sponsored by The 40 Foundation and prepared by some pretty awesome people at Funk & Consulting if I understand correctly.

World Religions Tree

I found the line connecting Gnosticism and Hermeticism rather interesting, I cannot say that I agree with Hermeticism branching from Gnosticism I think it is possibly the other way around.  It has no branching off until the 1400 with Rosicrucianism and then 1800 for The Golden Dawn, the closest other is Zoroastrianism which has the earliest branching off in 400, 900, 1800 and 1900.  It stands alone and singular in this regard.





One decade coming up in November

In November this year a full decade will have passed since the initial posting on the current site Holy Art Thou, the site was initially started in 2007 as a free WordPress blog, it then went through a lot of change with near all of the content (95% plus) being removed with the registration of this domain and the current sites focus.

During the third year anniversary month (Nov 2011) the site received an awesome review from EC Ballard at the The HedgeMason.

Screen shot Hermesphilus Review Hedge Mason

Where Hermeticism defined the content of the first version of the site, the current focus is predominantly on Hermetica and the bit of hermeticism specific to geomance.

I am considering doing a posting in November which will explain the origin of the name Hermesphilus, its meaning and the reason for the sites level of anonymity.







Nina Paley’s Burning Bush

If you are not already familiar with her work then do yourself a massive favour and go visit Nina’s blog, here is a link Blog.NinaPaley

In the Exodus (YouTube link above) the burning bush is portrayed in a very interesting way (02:00 to 02:40), with numerous eyes.


The Hedge Mason is a fascinating blog by Eoghan Ballard who is a Folklorist and Ethnographer specializing in Afro-Caribbean traditions of Central African origin.

It has been suggested that the burning bush witnessed by Moses in the Old Testament was an Acacia Senegal tree.  This tree is still held sacred in the Middle East, and it is said that anyone who breaks off a twig will die in a year.  It has even been suggested by scholar Benny Shanon, Professor of psychology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (Israel), whose main foci of research  are the phenomenology of human consciousness and the philosophy of psychology, (His publications include The Representational and the Presentational (1993) and The Antipodes of the Mind (2002);  At present, he is working on a book devoted to a general psychological theory of human consciousness) that Moses composed an ayahuasca analog from acacia resin and syrian rue, an MAOI, and that this allowed him to see his visions of Yahweh, the burning bush, and so forth.

Article link The Buried Secrets of Freemasonry: Acacia

Many who have experienced ayahuasca will be familiar with eyes looking back, the artist Alex Grey captures it very well.

Alex Gray EYES

Is it just a coincidence that eyes were used?  Nina, drop me a line pls ;-)


Do plants possess souls?

The finest part of matter is air, of air, soul, of soul, Nous, of Nous, God. CH 6.11

We have known that plants have a respiratory system, in History of Plant Respiration Meirion Thomas tells us of Marcello Malpighi (1628 – 1694) who was an Italian Biologist and who’s theories and experiments in London in 1686 formed the basis of much of the nineteenth century work on respiration in plants. Later discoveries about the composition of air, and about gaseous exchange between plants and the surrounding atmosphere were made in the late 1700’s. Plants do breath.

… therefore nous has taken soul as a cover and the soul, being itself divine, uses breath as fire and the breath governs living things. CH 10.17

…, but all the living (beings) which are endowed with voice have breath and souls, since all that decreases and increases is a living (being). Definitions 4.1

There is a very interesting National Geographic article, Trees Call for Help—And Now Scientists Can Understand by Gabe Popkin regarding plants making noises other than growing sounds of roots and branches. “Trees and plants and the like can, in fact, talk to each othe …” IFLScience have a good read These Incredible Videos Reveal How Plants Send Distress Signals When Under Attack as do the Smithsonian with Do trees talk to each other? Plants have a voice of their own.

CBC Radio blog posting Indigenous stories lead scientist to discover plants can hear refers to a new study by Dr. Monica Gagliano, a research associate professor adjunct in Evolutionary Ecology at the University of Western Australia, who has demonstrated that plants can indeed hear. Plants can sense and move towards moisture in the soil, Dr. Gagliano tested whether they could find water using sound. What she found was that plants will send their roots towards the sound of running water, even a recording of running water. Here are a few CBC Radio hyperlinks for other interesting facts:

Therefore, the movement of the cosmos and of all living material turns out not to arise from that which comes from outside the cosmos but from what is within, which moves outward: from the soul, from the breath of life or from incorporeal being. CH 2.8

The Project Augustine theological blog have a great post Plant Theology: Do Plants Have a Soul? (Plant Neurobiology), what I liked about their experiment was the respect shown to the plants, it appeared that there was no negativity directed at the plants during the recording. Plants can sense their environment and move.

Therefore all is immortal: matter, life, spirit, soul and Nous, from which every living creature has been composed. CH12.18

.. since all that decreases and increases is a living being. DH 4.1

Czech Hermetics

I was introduced to the works of Franz Bardon in 1993 while I house-sat for a leader of a pseudo-hermetic group with claims of European roots.  The clarity and firmness of thought radiates through all Bardon’s work is something that I have only seen surpassed in the Corpus Hermetica and Asclepius.


Mathew Blankenburg, Astrid Haszprunarova, Lukas Louzecky and Vladmir Kvasvicka are behind Czech Hermetics and appear to be doing an amazing job.  Previously unavailable works are being published and a treasure trove of information, documents and photographs are being made available.

Thank you guys!