All true knowledge arises in the mind and not in the intelligence. Having a mind distinguishes the Hermeticist from the layman who, as we have seen in the last chapter, is a mental cripple.

The Hermeticist has a mind he himself has formed and developed, and this enables him to reach states of higher consciousness in which he has access to absolute truth.

Physically, mind is a magnetic orb established between two poles: the brain (negative pole in man) and the sex (positive pole in man). In women, the brain is the positive pole and the sex the negative. This orb is formed exclusively by the Hermetic student's work on himself, and is the result of lengthy efforts. From a higher spiritual point of view, the mind is the philosopher's stone through which the initiate attains a continuous transformation of base metals (ignorance, lies) into gold (true knowledge) and the immortality of his own individuality.

The mind is the stomach of intelligence. Lacking this, sapiens never digests the information he possesses, which develops into undigested intelligence. A glutton for knowledge, he devours information about many things, which is incorporated into the cerebral archive without ever releasing the quintessence of its secret.


This immense mass of information possessed by a moderately cultured individual is precisely what gives him the false sensation of "knowing many things." He feels morally empowered to give all kinds of opinions, while remaining in ignorance of his mental disability, which in the end, is a lack of intelligence. The more fame or prestige an author has, or the more lessons studied by the individual, the greater will be his intellectual blindness.


If the individual has a professional title gained from long studies in university classrooms, it is practically guaranteed that his intelligence has been totally and incurably damaged by becoming stratified, or even petrified, at very low levels. The student does not assimilate his education due to an insufficient state of awareness. The student limits himself to memorizing and juggling infinite combinations of the data he possesses with acrobatics, which give him extraordinary intellectual agility, and absolute certainty of being very intelligent and extraordinarily capable in his profession.


Nevertheless, this treadmill of knowledge fails him lamentably when he is faced with practical situations in real life, except the application of mathematical concepts. It is thus that in spite of all that sapiens knows, there has been no evolution in his internal nature throughout history; nor is there any real indication that such evolution is approaching. Man has been converted into the carrier of innumerable concepts which each day are more numerous and complex; but in the individual himself there is no change.


From this we can recognize sapiens' ultimate vulnerability—his inability to apply the information he carries to his own transformation and evolution. This impossibility is so vast that the knowledge possessed does not allow him to see himself and evaluate himself impartially, effectively, objectively, and in a higher manner. It is a fact that the individual cannot see himself and, therefore, is full of false concepts about his own importance, value, and capability.


The most he can aspire to is to better the material conditions in which he lives, and guided by a subconscious impulse, endeavor to reach the stars with the secret hope of finding a superior galactic race which would teach him to live as a human being and enable him to leave his animal state.

So it is that many people live with the hope that flying saucers are real, longing to meet extraterrestrial beings who can in some way help them to better themselves. As with all things in life, sapiens clings to far off hopes or illusions created to elude the real possibilities within his reach.

It is much easier to dream of flying saucers or explore any kind of religious dogma than to dedicate oneself to the work of one's spiritual advancement. Sapiens is basically a loafer and as such, always seeks the easiest path and the least effort possible. He is fascinated by simple belief and ignorant faith, bedazzled by anything that can be acquired without effort, either by act and grace of the Holy Spirit or by chance.


Thus, sapiens creates all kinds of absurd, subjective, illogical, and arbitrary dreams. The content of the dreams is not important if he can cling to convenient illusions, just as the shipwrecked person clings to a board in order to save himself. In search of this handhold, the frustrated person is converted to a religious faith and is able to thus free himself from an undesirable "I."


This satisfies a passion for individual renunciation and allows him to disappear in the mass movement which he has entered. Eric Hoffer, the great philosopher and thinker, refers to this when he says:

"faith in a holy cause is to a considerable extent a substitute for the lost faith in ourselves."

With this strategy, the individual fully develops into a loafer, as he need not even think. He only needs to accept the religious dogma with which he has become affiliated without judgment or analysis. Only those who make efforts beyond duty and necessity are NOT loafers. People generally live dreaming of some future event which will radically change their lives. It may be the expectancy of a stroke of luck which will make them millionaires, finding a great love, or the arrival of superior forces or causes which will mold their destiny into a happier state.


Needless to say, this future illusion ruins or annuls all real and present intentions of attaining, by methodical and sustained efforts, whatever the individual desires. Sapiens is in truth a professional loafer, mainly because in his cerebral activity and in his conduct, he assiduously dopes himself with a dream drug. This drug exists, chemically speaking, but only within the human organism, where it induces somnambulistic sleep.

Undoubtedly, this laziness also extends to the boundaries of intelligence, and people do not wish to complicate their lives thinking about difficult things. It is much easier to follow those ideas which best justify the individual's temperament or way of life. For example, if a person is irresponsible, he will enthusiastically enter a religious or political movement which will free him from all responsibility through his unconditional surrender to a superior divine power; to a psychological oneness with a group in which no one is responsible for anything because it is anonymous. A cowardly person will choose a movement, which will deprive him of the largest possible quantity of vital experiences, which are a threat to his mental or physical tranquility.

Under the impulse of intellectual laziness, sapiens rapidly fills his brain with as much information as he is capable of absorbing and which he endeavors to memorize as exactly as possible. In this way, he hopes to have prefabricated solutions for every situation that arises in his life, which he falls back on with lightning speed, without making any effort to analyze the particular problem or conflict he is facing.


With this in mind, he rapidly and superficially absorbs all his studies, carrying out the process we call a dream apprenticeship (an apprenticeship in a low state of awareness; zero... from the point of view of essential truth). In this condition the individual gives great importance to the prestige of the source of his information.


The higher the source of this prestige, whether a professor, an author, or an institution, the more blindly the student will accept the concepts poured into him without taking the trouble to deeply analyze them. Also, following the same standards, he will imitate the behavior of famous people he admires and take on the ideologies of those individuals as his own.

In time, this person reaches a complete intellectual programming, which entails the death of his intellect, which is converted into mechanical or dead intelligence. No matter how brilliant the individual may be, we can be certain that if he is in this condition, he will be a mental cripple. Due to his cerebral myopia, he will be incapable of visualizing the enormous magnitude of his ignorance and be limited to living within the "egg" of his own knowledge.

Within his "mental egg" the individual is warm and comfortable, completely free from danger of arguments and facts, which may oblige him to think, and perhaps reach a complete revision of his intellectual baggage. This man has already formed his mechanism of adaptation and defense and clings blindly to the concepts he knows and understands, which constitute his cultural lineage.


At all times during his life when this individual is faced with phenomena, theories, or knowledge which are not filed in his cultural depository, he will vehemently reject them if they contradict his knowledge, or simply discredit them if they are unknown to him. If at any time he becomes aware of new or surprising topics, he will feel psychologically threatened, especially if they are in conflict with his interests and principles. We know that the psychological personality is integrated more substantially when it starts from separate behavioral units.


In practice, all experiences lived by an individual should be duly integrated into his personality. Nevertheless, the phenomenon already described in reference to intelligence also occurs with the personality. There is a very important difference between integrated experience and assimilated experience. People learn very much less than they believe from their experiences, as these are very frequently integrated into the personality in the form of clichés and empty stereotyped symbols which do not contribute beneficially to the individual's awareness.


They become fixed, empty rules for conduct, which the individual blindly follows without real discernment. The person seeks refuge in these programmed directives and hides behind them for protection, remaining comfortable and inert in reference to anything that involves real intelligence.


We call this assembly of protection and maintenance circuits the "egg." Within this, man keeps his infantilism and lack of maturity intact, avoiding any traumatic shocks, which might result from facing new realities and life challenging demands. It is for this reason that people automatically reject any new idea, which is not part of their cerebral program, no matter how valuable, or noble it may be.


On the other hand, they accept, a priori, any suggestion which is apparently in agreement with their beliefs, no matter how precarious this may be in the light of a deeper analysis. In truth, we must conclude that the art of thinking has been lost to humanity (if humanity ever possessed it) and has been supplanted by the art of imitation and informative memorization.

It is due to this that the wisest and most illustrious men, clever at solving profound scientific problems, completely fail in their attempt to solve difficulties of a vital and practical nature such as personal conflicts of an emotional nature, or understanding and wisely counseling their children.

The organization of society into institutions created for control and aid makes a civilized world where all is foreseen. The state has a solution for everyone, and even if no one is satisfied with government help, there is at least a solution, whether for medical, educational, or legal problems, etc. Everything is organized in such a way that it is difficult for an individual to have to face serious problems, or to go out and hunt for food as prehistoric man did. There are typical solutions for all. Man today knows that he may face hunger, but it is improbable he will die of starvation, which was a mass phenomenon in other ages.

This relative security is precisely that which encourages intellectual laziness, as the person is not pressured in any truly threatening manner. He never really needs to use his brain, and is content with placid mediocrity, free from intellectual conflict. There are very few individuals who seek total truth or the essential keys to all that has existed, exists, and will exist.


Wise men are content to be semi wise, reaching only the knowledge of some of the scientific disciplines, arts, or letters, remaining in total and absolute ignorance of their own human nature and the occult laws which govern life in the Universe. These men never become aware of the secret of life, limiting themselves to describing different phenomena, without ever explaining what a thing is, only stating how it is, which is not difficult to discern.

The Hermeticist proceeds inversely; he starts by studying and coming to know the vital keys of the Universe with which he then takes possession of the golden thread, which is the common nexus of all vital phenomena. It is as if in endeavoring to learn what a peach is, science proceeded to study the skin and the flesh without ever penetrating to the pit. The Hermeticist does not bother about either the skin or the flesh, as once the seed is planted it will multiply its fruits. The Hermeticist studies the rest of the books written by the semi-wise. The true sage, aware of absolute truths, has access to any of the relative truths when he so desires.

Similar to the agnostics, Hermeticists maintain that genuine knowledge cannot be manufactured. They add something more important which is the intrinsic principle of Hermetic philosophy; the fact that the impossibility for the existence of genuine knowledge is maintained only by special conditions in the consciousness of sapiens.


However, if these conditions are altered and modified by Hermetic techniques, understanding will occur in the individual. This will gradually enable him to reach true knowledge. Thus the Fraternity of Magicians has been formed, possessors of knowledge and beyond good and evil; of knowledge which transcends all polarity or partiality. Of necessity, this science must be absolutely impartial and impersonal.

The conceptual perspective of sapiens is built up to a great extent by his beliefs, for when man believes something with sufficient certainty, he confers on these beliefs the category of knowledge, which in the majority of cases are only a reflection of his opinions, hopes, likes, or dislikes.

Naively, many thinkers and men of science base all their hopes for the betterment of the human race on a major and massive development of sapiens' intelligence, believing in this way a certain kind of Paradise on Earth can be reached. These people, unaware of Hermetic science, do not realize that an intelligence which serves the beast cannot contribute anything which will ultimately be really beneficial for man.

Actually, between two beasts, one stupid and the other intelligent, which one is more dangerous? Naturally, the more intelligent one is.

Intelligence without consciousness inevitably leads man to chaos, but with the difference that this chaos is more complete, sophisticated, greater, and improved in relation to the upheaval provoked by mediocre brains.

Each individual develops inside the web of his own blindness, eagerly seeking to reinforce his position and discredit that of others. With horrible frequency, we find persons who take positions which are absolutely foolish, irrational, and spurious, but who are completely and sincerely convinced that they are right, they possess the truth, and they believe that everyone else is mistaken.


Furthermore, they suffer tremendously from the lack of understanding they receive from people. Basically, what these people wish to obtain is license and acknowledgement for their ideas, and to achieve the recognition or importance in life which Nature has denied them.

Some may say that Hermeticists believe themselves to be owners of the truth. From this point forward, we declare that no one has a monopoly on truth, but that we are the real possessors of Hermetic Art as this is ours by spiritual aristocracy and not by blood. Spiritual aristocracy begins and ends with the individual, and is inherited only from oneself, from the person one has been in previous incarnations. There are those who do not believe in reincarnation.


To them we would say that surely they will not reincarnate, as they have nothing within them which would survive death. Only Karma will have the last word, because even if they do not reincarnate, they must, in one way or another, pay their pending debts to Nature.

For a loafer it is very simple to discredit Hermeticism without taking the trouble to study and practice it. To deny Hermeticism without knowing its true dimensions is simply criticizing something unknown. Reproaching those who accept a certain idea in blind faith is justified, but at the same time it is correct to condemn those who reject an idea without rational analysis.

To illustrate this procedure so common among people, we will use the word anti-faith to describe an irrational belief in the opposite of what is being examined. This phenomenon certainly prevents all impartiality, which is the basis of deep and true reflection. It is harmful to have blind faith, but it is just as bad to have blind anti-faith.

It is true that many men are champions of faith or anti-faith, but absolutely lack true intelligence (awareness). We maintain that only a brain in a complete state of alertness can gradually establish the basis from which a conscious, awakened, and unprogrammed intelligence can be born. This intelligence, due to its acuteness, can have access to genuine knowledge.


Knowledge has many degrees, and to reach the highest degree requires a mystical process, but one which is in no way miraculous, but rather is logical and natural. This justifies the use of the term illumination, as referring to full clarification of a spiritualized intelligence. We can state in good conscience that genuine knowledge is something prohibited to sapiens, and it can only be attained when the individual achieves mutation from sapiens to Stellar Man thus acquiring the full right to knowledge.

Sapiens must be content with the relative knowledge of the semiwise which lights up the material world and obscures the internal panorama, thus making the knowledge of scientists useless; matter is meant to serve man, not the other way around.

Nevertheless, actual reality shows us a dehumanized world with imitations of men who unconditionally serve matter, which mercilessly absorbs their vital energy.

There is a strange symbiosis between matter and sapiens, in the sense that matter needs sapiens as sapiens needs matter. Thus, sapiens has, in spite of all we have said, a great difference from the all-animal; he possesses the divine spark, placing him at a higher level than the animal. Although the strength of the divine spark may be dim in an individual, the spark provokes in him an important phenomenon: the radiation of higher awareness, although in a microscopic degree.


Consciousness is the radiant energy of the divine spark or essence, and is a force which constantly surrounds and is irradiated by man, in the same way that light and heat are given off by the sun. In this way, any person will give off an energy similar to that of animal magnetism, but of a divine nature, or in other terms, this magnetism possesses a high vibration. The Hermeticist works on this small divine spark to make it grow in strength and power through the different phases of initiation.

The uninitiated is similar to the light of a candle in his awareness. On the other hand, the initiate, according to his degree of development, can reach a likeness to the sun. This illustrates the profound secret of the "Children of the Sun."

By virtue of his awareness, the individual projects this energy toward all he can touch with his hands or toward all that comes within his field of influence. An artist concentrates his awareness on his work, and this force is that which brings about a special experience and transmits an energy which impresses our psyche favorably or negatively.

A master carpenter or cabinetmaker puts his soul into his work whether he wishes to do so or not, as this is inevitable. Thus sapiens works giving consciousness to matter; that is, spiritualizing or giving subtlety to denseness. Consider who might capitalize on this force and profit from this phenomenon.

Still, as sapiens accomplishes this entirely unconsciously, it cannot be said that this is an independent voluntary act; it is more something which happens because it is thus decreed or programmed. Due to this ignorance, instead of man being owner and master of matter, matter subjugates man, extracting his conscious energy, which by impregnating the elemental bodies becomes incorporated into them.

Conscious energy has some intrinsic properties, and others that are contingent on the result of fusion with a specific person. This is explained in the following examples:

1. Conscious Energy: Is pure and chaste in itself. It constitutes the body of God. An infinitesimal fraction of this emanated from the Supreme Creator and took a body in a specific person.

2. Incarnated Awareness: Being incarnated in a certain individual, this energy, which is pure and chaste in itself, is modified according to the individual's basic vibratory tone, culture, self-control, discipline, and behavior.

On becoming incarnated, the conscious energy in Example 2 can follow two paths:

A. Superior Incarnated Awareness: This exists in an infinitesimal portion of the human race. Pure spiritual and chaste conscious energy acquires, through the intelligent experience of the individual, the notion of good and evil—the human knowledge, which exists only in a material body. This essence, therefore, reaches the human intelligence, preserving divine intelligence. In this case the higher purpose in the life of man is accomplished.

B. Inferior Incarnated Awareness: This exists in the great human mass. Conscious energy is blemished and degraded as its superior nature is corrupted by slavery to a perverted beast, due to the deviated intelligence of sapiens who is blind and ignorant, and who lives only to satisfy his own instincts. This awareness, still high in itself, becomes "inferior" in its manifestation, radiating an energy "stained" by the individual's base passions, impulses, and tendencies.

In his day-to-day existence, the individual imbues his material possessions with his conscious energy. When that energy inadvertently separates from him, it acts independently with its own intelligence, which has been taken from the individual.


This intelligence gives tone and color to pure awareness. Since each person has impulses, fears, desires, ambitions, and sentiments which manifest themselves as uncontrolled passions, this force imprints a directive onto the conscious energy and becomes an absolutely uncontrollable path for the individual from the moment this force leaves him to become incorporated into any material structure. This is the reason why a person can become completely enslaved by his material possessions, which make use of him, absorbing more and more of his awareness.

There are many science fiction stories, which cover the subject of machines, robots, or other objects, which suddenly acquire their own intelligence and consequent autonomy in their actions. Actually, these books have endeavored to hint at certain ideas in order to make their readers think and very gradually prepare them for more complex designs.


At times, reality is disguised as fiction in order that there should be no opposition from the masses, who obstinately refute all things not forming part of the orthodox cultural records of humanity. The truth is that this phenomenon exists and no one is free from it. The machine has turned into a monster that is not going to devour man, because it is already doing so.


For example, the automobile is of great use to its owner, but we must ask ourselves who drives who, who is the owner and who is the servant? Is it the automobile who carries its owner as an obedient slave, or is it the owner who must work long hours to feed and maintain his car and drive it in order to fulfill the reason for its existence: driving over the roads at great speed devouring the Earth's blood, petroleum?

As another example, let us observe those who have pets, such as a dog, and how people work to maintain and keep them like their own children. Many times a sapiens can be seen pulling a dog tied to a chain, and we can ask ourselves who is leading whom.


With domestic animals, conscious energy explains the mysterious affinity between a dog and his master and how they, due to unexplainable circumstances, acquire an amazing likeness which at times is limited only to rules of conduct, but at other times goes as far as physical likeness. The explanation is simple: the animal, just as the automobile or other objects of personal use, absorbs the conscious energy of its master which is, as we have already explained, stained or impregnated with the person's individual characteristics, and in this way shapes the animal's appearance.

On some occasions the conscious energy displaced by the individual takes body in a machine which belongs to him, and then reacts destructively against its owner because his passions are indiscriminately destructive. The story of Dr. Frankenstein is symbolic of this explanation and it must be noted that emanated awareness is a virtual child of the man from which it originated. Many times there are persons who are destroyed by their own works and not by any karmic reaction of their acts. The passionate or destructive force they generated endeavors, in its unconscious manifestation, to destroy its own father.

Something very similar occurs with children of the flesh who, from the earliest age, develop all kinds of bad habits, tantrums, whims, or hysterical crying bouts when their wishes are not immediately gratified. We cannot blame these creatures as they are only giving way to the defects incorporated in them by their sires through incarnation of their consciousness. All the defects not controlled by their parents, all hidden tendencies of an instinctive type, take form in the children.


It is due to this that the Bible says: "the sins of the fathers will be visited upon the children." Subsequently, the parents find that they cannot control or guide their children, but on the contrary, many times it is the children who exercise veritable tyranny on the authors of their days. This situation is no more than a repetition of past conditions, the impossibility of controlling internal energy, which bursts forth in the form of passion. The same then occurs with children, and in this case energy rebels against the parents from another physical body.

Continuing the commentary on machines, we can point out the extraordinary influence the operator has over a computer, which becomes very sensitive to the vital state and conditions of the operator. This occurs because the machine becomes impregnated with the conscious energy of the operator, which then acts independently, but following the basic directives of the operator's vibratory states.

We can also point out a phenomenon affecting all drivers and truck owners that is based on their close identification with the vehicle, which is a source of work and subsistence. I refer to the strange reactions these machines may have under certain circumstances, producing all kinds of absolutely illogical and incredible mechanical defects. In some cases, this reaction reaches the point where the owner of the machine is ruined. There is also the case of machines that have had an accident or collision, and when the owner or driver is changed, the accident is repeated with practically the same characteristics.

The case of doomed jewels that bring bad luck to their owners, to the extent that they inexorably suffer violent death, is well known. All this can be explained by the "invisible child" (consciousness) which inhabits material objects, and which was created by one of the owners of the object, or perhaps by the one who made it. The same thing happens with firearms, which, after having caused death, become dangerous as they are impregnated with the vibrations of the tragedy and of the person who caused it.


From this comes the saying "firearms are loaded by the devil," because a revolver, which has death vibrations, awakens similar vibrations in its owner through a process of magnetic induction. Thus, this person, without realizing it, makes use of the firearm at the least provocation or emotional disturbance.

We will conclude this subject by citing the case of plants and flowers, as it has been proven that they are extremely sensitive to the influence of their owners consciousness, caretakers, or whoever is frequently near them. Any person with love for a plant or a tree, and who talks to them as if speaking to a person, will be able to witness the extraordinary increase in the beauty, health, and vitality of the specimen.

Since this entire subject has been elaborated to explain the impossibility of real knowledge under the condition of ordinary awareness, we wish to point out the enormous power of matter upon sapiens. He cannot emancipate his intelligence from the hypnotic influence of matter, which doubly affects him:

1. By the projection of mass energy on the individual
2. By the projection of previously absorbed conscious energy on the individual

Matter has an energy of its own which strongly radiates and affects man in a certain manner. Tied to his material possessions, he becomes unable to visualize any way of being, other than the conservation and multiplication of the property or assets he possesses. On the other hand, corporeal matter has a decisive influence on intelligence, either making it acute or clouding it. If the body's matter maintains a low and dense vibration, the intelligence inexorably declines.


This is the hidden reason why Moses, possessor of certain Hermetic secrets, forbade his followers to eat pork, as this animal has a particularly dense and low vibratory state which would therefore produce a deterioration in intellectual capacity. This is also the basis for the vegetarian system, and although there is much to be said about this, anyone who has abstained from meat for some time will prove that his thoughts have become noticeably clearer.

The conscious energy radiated by the masses affects the individual in a hypnotic manner, since this imposes the influence of a different vibration on him, which then impels him to act according to its particular vibration. A gift given to us due to a social obligation by someone with evil intentions can negatively influence our health, intelligence, and destiny.

Summing up, sapiens permanently lives in a somnambulistic condition which keeps him dormant, making it impossible for him to attain real knowledge, and seriously damaging his awareness and intelligence. Each day what he knows increases at the cost of his human essence, which is reduced in direct relationship to the extent and potency of his cerebral programming.

This programming converts him into a veritable biological robot with automatic physiological, instinctive, emotional, and intellectual reactions.

The individual's ideas, opinions, or sentiments lose all human validity, and he is converted into a mere circuit activated by external influences. These external influences are thus converted into disconnected elements of the individual's internal reactions, a mere echo of the cultural concert and the emotional and instinctive tide of humanity.

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One of the most powerful illusions of Homo sapiens is that of free will.

As an argument against what has been stated in the previous pages, it could be said that "come what may, the individual does as he pleases" and that this freedom really proves he is not under control of any kind by forces outside himself. Precisely, one of the things that gives sapiens a sensation of power is the illusion of freedom. To prove this freedom, the adolescent rebels against the rules of behavior imposed by society, believing that he is proving his independence, when really the only thing he accomplishes is submission to his own unconscious impulses.

Freedom has many aspects, and we speak therefore of private or personal freedom, public freedom, social freedom, freedom of action, words, and ideas, moral freedom, and economic freedom. In everyday life we speak of economic slavery, of the emancipation of women, of oppression of the lower classes by the upper classes, of subjugation by fear and anguish, dependence on higher authorities, subordination of youth in a world created by their elders, and many other concepts which would be too lengthy to enumerate.

We are not interested in fashioning an orthodox philosophical analysis, dwelling on what has been said by so many thinkers in the past. Instead, we wish to reflect upon the vital reality of sapiens.

Sapiens believes in his personal independence due to the fact that at any moment he may, if he so desires, violently break any of the bonds which imprison him without any impediments. It is possible for him, if he so desires, to leave the work which imprisons him and live as a vagabond on other people's charity.


Or, he can abandon those studies which are so arduous and look for a job or live as he can. If he undertakes any of these measures of "freedom," he knows he will have to pay for them, but considers the price cheap for doing as he pleases. The best proof of this apparent independence can be inferred by the reader, who imagines that at any time he can, by a voluntary act, quit reading this book once and for all. All these reflections suggest the possession of a force we could call "power for doing things," something of which sapiens feels extremely proud.


Consciousness, intelligence, will power, and freedom constitute the mythological quaternary of the human race, which considers these talents as equal to the holy teaching that designates them as human beings. Not for a moment do people have any doubt that they really are the possessors of these gifts.

In order to duly illustrate this chapter on freedom, we will form a ternary with the words freedom, will power and desire, as these are intimately related to the subject of our interest.

Before continuing, it is necessary to clarify the objective of this work. In its attempt to enlighten in a clear and open manner, it could rightly be called anti-Hermetic. It was written for all those who aspire to accomplish something in a real and effective way on the path of their own spiritual development.


For this goal to be realized, it is vitally important that the individual should know, in depth, his true internal nature and his real position on the vital scale of values. To the degree that sapiens is full of illusions about himself and his life, his spiritual fulfillment becomes impossible, becoming only the beautiful dream of a well-meaning person.


The world is full of mirages of this nature which end up being nothing more than devices used by people to avoid the reality that troubles them. There is no field more likely than esotericism to generate all kinds of fantasies by intellects anxious to avoid crude reality. In facing reality, there is the great disadvantage that the individual must suffer all kinds of sacrifices and make efforts in order to attain his purpose, and this is certainly arduous and difficult.

It is much easier for the loafer to stay dreaming without making any effort or taking a risk of any kind, because in dreams everything is possible and there is no danger of facing arduous, conflicting, or traumatic situations. For these people, occultism is the real "open sesame" which enables them to drug themselves with the illusion of perfection and spiritual progress, which only exists in their imagination, stimulated by unconscious desires and fears.

Generally, the seeker of esoteric doctrines only wishes to find an ideological system which justifies his own defects and stimulates his hidden dreams, although this system may be absurd and patently subjective or childish.

We can assert that sapiens only understands what he wishes to understand, or more accurately, that which is convenient. He absolutely discredits everything that affronts his cerebral guidelines or his habits of life and conduct. This is perhaps one of the greatest obstacles facing the student of Hermeticism or the neophyte who aspires to be a disciple. To analyze objectively and without prejudice requires a flexible and open disposition so as not to limit oneself and discredit what is being studied, without a prior alert and deep reflective process.

Still, however much an individual strives, he will not be successful if he has too high an opinion of himself or his own intelligence and knowledge. It is sufficient for someone to believe he is very intelligent, cultured, or wise, to refrain from thinking impartially, limiting himself to a superficial examination of concepts and very frequently taking from these only the emotional or symbolic content. Vanity and pride are two bandages which blind sapiens, preventing him from seeing what would be evident to an awakened, impartial, or impersonal observer.

Symbolically, we could visualize sapiens as a personage who has inflated himself, and this condition impels him to float in the air toward higher regions, but only in relation to the distance from the ground. From the clouds he contemplates the world and believes himself to be the most wise and perfect being in creation. Unfortunately, while he remains in this limbo, he will also be far removed from vital and everyday reality.


The first step taken by the student of Hermeticism, or of esotericism in general, is to really put his feet on the ground and proceed, despite the pain, with his own deflation until he reaches his real level. He will hopefully reach the lowest point possible, as there is no other starting point except from zero. If one has not started from zero, it is a false start and therefore, corrupt. The student must live the experience of entirely understanding his own insignificance and incredible smallness in face of the immensity of the Universe.

As we have already stated in previous pages, the individual must "appreciate the magnitude of his ignorance," as only the immense humility caused by this experience can lead the individual, along with powerful reasoning and adequate alertness, to the psychological conditions which are necessary for him to understand what Hermeticism is and the far-reaching truths involved.


If this state of humility has not been reached and there is still pride and strong self-esteem, together with a destructive internal nature, it is improbable that an individual will ever gain any spiritual benefit from Hermetic science. It is for this reason that we are endeavoring in this book to have the individual see himself as he really is and not as he believes himself to be. The student must not accept these concepts with the blind faith of a believer or a convert.


On the contrary, such concepts must be shaken countless times in the sieve of serene and unprejudiced meditation during a state of intensified alertness. Afterwards, one must not be content with this procedure, but prove this teaching in everyday life, observing his own experience and that of others.

In the practice and study of Hermeticism there is a necessary order which must be complied with for the student to reach his goal. Regarding this process, we urge the reader to make the greatest effort to understand this book.


There are three basic stages to be fulfilled in order to be successful:

1. Motivation
2. Understanding
3. Practice

The result is evolution.

These are the three indispensable steps for the student to attain his goal. His motivation must be powerful; his understanding, deep; and his practice, intense. The result of all this is the evolution of the student. Yet what at first sight seems so simple is arduous and complex to accomplish. The student generally fails at one of the stages and evolution does not take place.


Many times the student reaches the following result:

1. Motivation
3. Practice

The result is stimulation of mass energy and there is no evolution.

In this case, the individual is carried away by his enthusiasm and skips over the second point, directly proceeding to practice. It is also possible, and this is very common, that his own inability to understand impels him to evade this stage. The result will then be a "stimulation of mass energy," that is, corporeal euphoria, but without the desired result, evolution.

We must realize the fundamental importance of profound understanding on the path of Hermeticism, as this is not a footpath of faith and self conviction. Without authentic understanding, nothing real is gained, only subjective illusions.

Frequently the following situation occurs:

1. Motivation: poor
2. Understanding: insufficient
3. Practice: scant

The result is insignificant evolution.

Occasionally a person's understanding and practice reach acceptable levels but motivation is deficient. In this case the individual lacks the fuel necessary to successfully reach his spiritual goal.

Having understood this, let us analyze the triangle of the words Freedom, Will Power, and Desire.

In the first place, sapiens is ambivalent in relation to freedom; he desires and fears it simultaneously. Generally, he desires it physically and fears it psychologically. Sapiens wants his physical, political, and economic freedom and he desires total freedom of action to accomplish his personal aims. In the end, this longing represents an immeasurable yearning for power, in that he wishes to be free enough to be able to exercise his power over people and within his environment.


Following his desire for freedom, he endeavors by all means within his reach to attain physical, ideological, and economic independence. In opposition to this, however, and obeying his ancestral fear of individual responsibility, he merges into religious, cultural, and political systems within which he dissolves his own "I," thus becoming free from the responsibility of his own decisions and actions.

From another point of view, freedom is understood as a lack of opposition to individual actions or tendencies, thus making it possible for the individual to accomplish his purposes, whatever these may be. It is for this reason that many individuals seek their freedom by means of successful economic negotiations, alleging that money makes them free and powerful.

Yet, sapiens' approach leaves out one truly important consideration in this aspect, a factor which in practice acts as a veritable jailer, and at times as the executioner of the individual. We refer to the internal nature of man; to his emotions, instincts, and passions, which are really his masters. The only possible freedom in this life is freedom from one's own passions, because as long as they dominate us, we will be mere puppets who obey the ebb and flow of the passionate states of the masses.

All independence is impossible while thinking and feeling according to the influence of the environment on our internal nature. Whatever experience of freedom we may have had will disappear in the face of the primitive force of our animal soul which dominates us.

Freedom does not depend on the individual's physical conditions; the prisoner in his cell can be more autonomous than a person who is very rich and has freedom of movement. The only true freedom is liberation of one's self and liberation from the central computer of the species. As long as this has not taken place, it is possible to be a great politician, a famous multimillionaire, have glory, honor, and power, but still be as much or more of a slave than the poorest man.

We invite the astute reader to analyze himself and establish what decisions he has made absolutely freely in his life, without being compelled by either external or internal pressures which oblige him to act in a certain way, or not solely because he had no other alternative, or not merely following the line of least resistance.


Of course, these are not decisions made freely, independently, and voluntarily, but are instead equivalent to things, which happen to the individual independently of his wishes. From the time we reach the age when we can make decisions, it will be noted that one decides to follow a certain career through imitation, qualification, or ambition. One marries due to loneliness, sexual desire, lack of love, or personal convenience, but not free will.


To choose freely implies a decision independent from internal and external pressure, behaving impartially and objectively, carefully weighing the pros and cons, then deciding what it is we really want and to what extent this may be favorable or harmful, and what degree of compatibility there is between our plan and family and social interests.

We have now arrived at the second word of our triangle: Will Power, which is ultimately the key that may shed more light on the problem under discussion. The capacity to choose and make decisions involves the possession of mature judgment manifested through will power, and this quality must be central to our lives. To be free we must be capable of voluntarily deciding our existence.


Nevertheless, it is here that will power is confused with desire, the third word of our triangle. It is necessary to recognize that the human being does not move by the impulse of his will power, but by the strength of his desire, which is in turn motivated and conceived by prevailing instincts or emotions.


To have Will Power implies the possession of a powerful, stable, and mature "Superior I." The will permits maintaining a constant line of action, which does not occur in practice, as the individual constantly changes his center of gravity or his "directing I." As Gurdjieff so aptly states,

"Man has no "I," but many "I's" which, in reality, possess him, instinctively and anarchically, in a passionate manner."

For this reason sapiens rapidly changes his mind as well as his way of thinking and feeling. From this is born enormous internal contradictions, disorientation, doubt, and instability. What stability can there be if we change every minute? As sapiens unconsciously realizes this phenomenon, he creates the most rigid intellectual plans possible in order to cling to them, thus obtaining the semblance of stability.


It does not matter that the "directing I" is acting as the master of our "biological house" (the physical body); the intellectual plan will tell us what we must do. This is one of the reasons why sapiens petrifies his intelligence, limiting himself to an assembly of fixed, stable, and permanent circuits. This has some advantages, but they are insignificant in the face of the negative factors this implies.


It may be true that petrification is useful to the individual in attaining greater emotional or intellectual stability, or adjustment to the group to which he belongs. On the other hand, petrification converts the individual, metaphorically speaking, into a "tree of stone," rigid, inflexible, and static, depriving him of the dynamics of transformation.

While the world changes, this individual clings to his worn out plan, refusing to consider the importance and far-reaching effects of these transformations.

Without a grownup and mature "Superior I," man has no real will; the force of the unknown and unexpected impels him towards a completely unknown goal which was not chosen by him. Sapiens is an eternal wanderer toward the unknown and completely ignores the happiness or tragedy of his future. A premonition of this impels him to "enjoy life" in a compulsive manner, systematically searching for today's pleasures as he is unsure about tomorrow; he is a being without a future, at least in his choices.


Under these conditions the materialistic and purely selfish attitude of sapiens is, to a certain extent, understood and forgiven. Sapiens tries by all means within his reach to make his empty and inert internal world vibrate. In this pursuit he often prefers useless suffering to internal peace.

Lacking a "Superior I," sapiens tenaciously takes refuge in a "Collective I," which is projected into the individual, directing his life. In previous chapters, we have referred to this "I" as the Collective Soul or Central Computer of the species. It is thus that customs, norms, and the collective approval or rejection of certain guidelines for conduct masters the individual, and in the end alienates him completely.


All men who seem to have an original and successful attitude toward life are rapidly imitated by the masses who, without further thought, superficially adopt their ways without looking beneath the surface. Movie stars and singers bring about an imitative mania as they project a grand image, while the "gray men" endeavor to possess that image in order to become outstanding.

There are few people who act authentically, following their own internal impulses, appearing as they really are; the majority constantly seek the approval of others to justify and reinforce their way of being. A characteristic custom of nearly everyone is to frequently observe the facial expression of people with whom they come into contact in order to verify whether their faces show approval or rejection, and to modify their attitude accordingly.

The masses, in turn, constantly seek leaders to follow. This is the real recognition of the fact that their volition is void; they need someone to follow as they lack the will power to direct themselves. The leader is always a symbol of the man who is strong, daring, free, and has the determination, which is lacking in the common man.

We definitely deny the concept of sapiens' free will, and maintain that in truth and according to the oriental concept, "all is written." Sapiens occupies a specific level within the cosmic order, and for him all is predetermined and foreseen.


Nevertheless, we must not take this concept in an absolute, blind, and definitive manner. It is indispensable to interpret the concept in the sense that a person is limited to the possibilities offered by the Lords of Destiny or Zodiacal Gods. However, these beings do not impel the individual along a one-way path, but instead there are detours on the path which present a choice, but always within the structure imposed on him.

Though it may be true that for sapiens "all is written," this is not true for the wise man who has freed himself from the collective animal soul and has been converted into a stellar man. For this individual, nothing is written, and he has in his hands the book of destiny and the pen with which he may write as he pleases, but always within the laws that govern the Universe.

Sapiens cannot direct his life to whatever he really wants; he has to limit himself to being carried away on the ocean of collective "progress" whose ebb and flow is determined by the Lords of Destiny.

So the greatest civilizations are born through much blood, sweat, and tears, just so one day the pendulum will swing to the other extreme and rapidly destroy everything, leaving only ruins, traces, and memories. The pendulum of life crushes and overcomes human creations, no matter how powerful and important; they are scattered to the winds with the passing of time, thus removing any transcendence they may have had. Only the immortal Gods survive the terrible Cronos.

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Hermeticism is the Masterly Science of the Universe, which came to the planet Earth in the times of Lemuria. According to tradition, Hermeticism was brought by extraterrestrial Masters, who by this transcendental act tried to give sapiens the possibility of higher evolution, which until that time had been denied to them.

We do not know the deepest motives of these visitors. We only know that they came to this place and stayed for a long time. The physical facts of their arrival and in what vessels they may have arrived is what least interests us. Let's say that a space vehicle is not the only way of traveling in the Universe.


It is possible that human beings or humanoids, as they may be called, can under certain circumstances, and even without a material body, fly through the Universe at speeds faster than light. It is not light that flies fastest in the Cosmos, but thought, and we truly believe that it is possible to fly on the wings of thought as symbolized by the God Mercury.

From the Hermetic point of view, we are not interested in the scientific and technical advances of the visitors from space; we are only interested in the science of the internal nature of the human being, the absolute key to all sciences. For this reason we can correctly call Hermeticism the Science of all Sciences.

From ancient times until now, Hermetic science has not been lost or weakened, but remains in all its purity, although many pseudophilosophical mystifications have arisen which have been transformed into systems based on Hermeticism, but which lack true knowledge.

In our age, Hermeticism is fully active and continues to give man the opportunity to escape from his cosmic classification and to rise to an infinitely higher level: the level of man, that is, of the creature in whom the highest human qualities are manifested, which sapiens definitely lacks. This prodigious passage requires the authentic mutation of sapiens who, if successful in the process, will forever abandon his terrestrial condition to convert himself into a Stellar Man.

This is not an abstraction or a symbol, but an absolutely real, true, concrete, and tangible possibility. However much we study the marvels of Nature, or the wonders of science and technology, there does not exist, nor will there ever exist, a marvel such as what we are pointing out: the metamorphosis of the human larva into a Stellar Man.

This occurs at present in our age, in this world, and it is not something that people are completely ignorant of, since much has been written regarding Esoteric Initiatic tradition.

However, sapiens prefers to be involved in studies which are absolutely unimportant, unproductive, and temporal, and which do not produce any benefit that will withstand the passing of time. In Santiago, Buenos Aires, Paris, Peking, New York, Moscow, or Cairo, mutants are being formed, Stellar Men who will forever abandon their terraqueous beings, although they may physically live on this planet and collaborate more than anyone else toward real progress.


It is possible to be a stranger on your own planet, but as superior beings, living a simple and anonymous life. Insignificant men continually strive to call attention to themselves; the truly important endeavor to pass unnoticed.

The "invaders" or "aliens," as the hypothetical visitors from the stars have been called, are not about to arrive; they have been here since the remote era of Lemuria, anonymous and entirely mixed with the crowd. These men have always been the light of humanity. Like Prometheus, they carry the divine flame in their hands, lighting, inspiring, and helping terrestrial men who are in a mere larval state of evolution.

What do these Stellar Men do? To what do they dedicate their time? They do the same work as ordinary men, since they must earn their daily bread, because their superior condition does not free them from the responsibility of labor. On the contrary, the more aware a man is, the greater his responsibilities will be.


Apart from their struggle to survive, they undertake intensive Hermetic activities; that is, their existence, actions, thoughts, and ideas have a transcendental superior purpose. Do not think that these beings live attempting to teach Hermeticism to terrestrial beings. On the contrary, Hermetic science is stellar knowledge prohibited to terrestrials, to whom this teaching may be transmitted only when they successfully comply with the formalities of a process which we call Initiation.


Those who do not fulfill these requirements have no right out of mere curiosity to know what is veiled by the laws of the Supreme Creator or Great Orderer of the Universe. Do not believe either that all these Stellar Men live making the process of initiation known. Only a very few of them have taken on this serious responsibility. The rest labor in other works, which in this case cannot be divulged.

Continuing this explanation, there are two kinds of Stellar Men:

  1. those who originally arrived from outer space and continued their evolution on this planet

  2. those who by Initiation were transformed into mutants and reached the qualification of Stellar Man due to the elevation of their awareness

The most recent manifestation of Hermeticism in the past occurred in Egypt with the "Master of Masters," Hermes Trismegistus (the three times great), in an era not able to be determined historically. Tradition tells us that this Master reached our planet Earth thirty thousand years ago. Hermetic philosophy derived its name from the teachings of Hermes, who was a perfect heir and follower of the early Masters.

We must understand that before Hermes, Hermetic science must have been called by another name, but this is not important as words are only symbols which can change many times while the designated object remains the same in its own nature. During the course of history, Hermetic science adopted many names but remained constant in its internal nature. The most known Hermeticists were the early Rosicrucians (not those who currently carry this name) who adopted a series of explanatory symbols in order to facilitate the transmission of the teaching to students. It must be said that if in fact a few true Rosicrucians exist today, no one knows about them.

The Hermeticists, whether they be Rosicrucians, magicians, initiates, Masters, wizards, etc., are not grouped into one "Hermetic Order" or "Rosicrucian Order," but they are scattered throughout the world, each one independent, in spite of working within a common plan. A Stellar Man may be an eminent politician, a priest, a schoolmaster, an author, a screen star, a soldier, an artisan, or any thinker. Each one of these knows exactly what he is doing in his job. These men do not act as master instructors. The Masters of wisdom are generally in charge of a school for Hermetic instruction, but as stated before, there are few of these men.

When we speak of Hermetic philosophy, many people believe that it is an abstract and theoretical discipline, a mere exercise of thought, which gives nothing practical to the individual.

Traditional philosophy offers an immense range of reflections on innumerable problems which concern sapiens. The great philosophers who existed in the history of humanity are today the pillars of civilized thinking. Apparently, there is little more to be added to what has already been stated in this respect.


For this reason, speaking of Hermetic philosophy does not disturb or stir anyone. We must state that we do not endeavor in any way to call attention to ourselves, cause sensationalism, or to proselytize; we only wish to tell something to the world so that according to its inhabitants ability to think, they may understand the rudiments of Hermetic Art, or deny them, make fun of them, or merely shrug their shoulders.


The great Hermetic sages are not interested in convincing anyone; they only fulfill their work of spiritually enlightening humanity. If their message is heard, they rejoice with the promise of a new dawn for sapiens; if they are not understood or appreciated, they will lament for those who will be deprived of such a beautiful and remarkable opportunity.

Stellar Men are not very concerned with the passage of time, as they are immortal in their intrinsic nature. They may be transformed many times, suffering the process we call death, but beyond this they retain their conscious identity and the memory of their knowledge, returning each time to physical existence as one who awakens from a health giving sleep. It is sapiens who should be concerned about time, as the brevity of his existence as a thinking identity obliges him to work rapidly if he wishes to be converted into a Stellar Man and attain immortality.

Many ask how it is that Hermeticism remains so unknown if it is really so important. Others will identify Hermetic philosophy with yoga, occultism, mentalism, parapsychology, spiritualism, demonology, or black magic, etc., believing that there is no Hermetic secret, despite the abundant literature which exists on this subject.


It should be known that Hermeticism has not spread beyond the true schools, as it is an art whose knowledge can only be attained in a special state of consciousness which, if not reached, makes all study in this respect hollow and empty talk. The wisdom of awakened men cannot be understood by sleeping beings however intelligent they may be.

It could be believed that Hermetic philosophy is some thing that must be studied constantly in spiritual retirement, sharpening the intellect to the maximum in order to fulfill the "instructional plan" as soon as possible. Conversely and distinct from traditional philosophy, Hermeticism is something deeply vital. The individual must face the different transformations through which man passes during his earthly existence in order to take advantage of the teaching in a practical manner, as Hermetic philosophy is the art of living, not taught in any university or school.


The student must take possession of Hermetic wisdom by the sweat of his brow, getting to know life at its roots, passing through as many experiences as possible, enlightened by what he has truly learned, enabling him to develop himself into a true Hermetic sage and a Stellar Man.

Hermeticism is the only living philosophy, the only knowledge which is idea, concept, flesh, blood, and spirit. As it is flesh and blood (recall Jesus at the Last Supper), it constantly renews itself; it is dynamic, flexible, and eternally young.

Hermeticism is the achievement of wisdom as a living philosophy. It is the universal and divine spirit, transubstantiated into a body of living matter.

There is no "Hermetic mold," die, or matrix which could serve as a model to produce Stellar Men according to an established pattern. On the contrary, each one of these men is truly unique. It is for this reason that Hermetic philosophy is not taught in the traditional manner which sapiens is accustomed to, for in traditional study success is guaranteed to the most studious or intelligent.

If Hermeticism was taught according to a program of subjects the student had to master, we would be creating brainwashed men; men programmed according to a plan. It would be a violation of this science itself, which simply stated, seeks freedom, independence, and the free will of man.

It is difficult for a person to understand how it is possible to "teach without teaching," how to convey knowledge without a programmed and methodical instructional process. The answer is simple. In the initiatic process the student is placed before very peculiar, vital conditions in order that he may, with a self-taught criteria, "create his own knowledge," the basis of which is given to him in oral instructions of a very special nature, and in a mystic process we could call mental osmosis.

To tell the truth, Hermeticism recognizes no other possibility of real learning aside from self-taught knowledge in which it is the subject himself who is teaching himself, having received basic information from a teacher or simply from the written word. The educational system used in schools and universities suffers from a serious defect: it programs the student according to rigid plans engraved in his brain by force of the prestige and authority of these establishments.


The intelligence of the pupil is seriously damaged and transformed into a static capacity, focused solely on the subject learned, making it practically impossible for him to take on the profound analysis of really new and different things. At a professional level, it is regrettable to observe specialists who have been modeled after a basic stereotype as if they were manufactured on an assembly line.

Hermetic science is the only science which does not cerebrally program an individual, and it frees his intelligence from established mechanical circuits. The intelligence of the Stellar Man is free and unprogrammed. The explanation of how this is achieved is beyond the reach of a programmed intellect and therefore is not a subject to be explained in this book.


As a general orientation only, the reader should reflect upon the relationship between the specific and the general, and on the popular saying that "nothing is true or untrue, all is according to the color of the glass through which it is seen." Truly, only by rising above the many facets of truth is it possible to know absolute truth, which summarizes in itself what is and what is not, truth and falsehood, good and evil, ignorance and wisdom, life and death.

We also wish to refer to the koans used in Zen Buddhism as an example of what we are saying. The koan is a type of symbolic dialogue between a Master and his disciple. The Master sets up a question which cannot be solved intellectually because it is beyond reason. This method is an attempt to destroy and surpass conceptual thought in order to reach the essential and unique nature of all things.

Hermeticism says "all is mind" (the word mind has been chosen to designate the unique energy of the Universe, but another could be used, such as spirit) and that the nature of the Universe is mental. In this way, the profound nature of all that exists would be comprised of mind energy. The atom is mind; man is mind; God is mind.

Herein lies the maximum interest of Hermetic philosophy: taking possession of the knowledge of the unique essence of all things, and this essence, being everywhere, is the master key to wisdom.

Life itself is contradictory and paradoxical; no one can explain to themselves why there is so much injustice in the world if there is a Supreme Being. In the light of Hermetic wisdom all contradictions disappear and paradoxes are reconciled, and the hidden cause of all things is thus understood.

Truth is an exaggeration of the simple, and to reach what is simple, no great wisdom or instruction in traditional matters is necessary. But, it is essential to have a minimal degree of culture, because without this, our intelligence would lack the data and material to work with in order to reach a synthesis, a state in which the individual needs no culture, at least not of the usual sort.

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The abundant esoteric mythology does not reveal the occult, but instead veils it, causing profound concern among those who seek, whether sincerely or falsely, the light of Hermetic truth. There are many schools, centers, and movements, each one with its own philosophy. Each of these currents apparently flows against the others and there is a great lack of agreement and coincidence in their teachings.


Naturally, each school proclaims that its truth is correct, and that those similar to it are imperfect or spurious. It is not our intention to criticize the different schools, but rather to guide seekers so they may find what they seek and at the same time obtain more insight into their personal motives. Each seeker has a special concept of what he desires to find, and although he may indeed find what he is seeking, he will later realize that his discovery is not leading him to anything superior, real, or positive.

Under the general context of "occult sciences" there are those who feel attracted to spiritualism, yoga, rosicrucianism, parapsychology, or mentalism. In turn, within each of these currents there are numerous schools and "pseudoschools." The candidate for initiation finds it difficult to choose appropriately.

In the first place, we may say that each individual has his own level within the general average of humanity. It is as if we all lived in a water tank, similar to an aquarium, and each person found his own level of flotation according to the density of his body. There are many kinds of sapiens; there are those who are very low and others who are very high for their species.


Under these conditions, it is natural that each person should seek an adequate movement or school appropriate to his own level; otherwise he would find it impossible to gain any benefit. In this case, it is understood that "like attracts like." As an example, let us suppose a very low or dense individual arrives at a high level school, attracted by the goal he seeks. With absolute certainty, this individual will consider this institution bad or deficient as his concept of badness will be all that is beneath or above his own level. For him, "good" will be that which is suitable to his own vibration.

Following this analogy of a level of flotation, those of dense vibration find it practically impossible to remain in high level initiatic groups, and must resign themselves to others of a lower category.

It must be stated that all schools are of use, even those of a low level, for if it were not for them, there would be none which could cope with individuals of inferior quality, who also need a light equal to their capabilities in order to see. On the other hand, if a man of high vibration enters a movement of low category, he will find it easy and comfortable to remain there, but his spiritual development will be scarce or nil.

To be a disciple of Jesus, it was necessary to attain the level of an Apostle; it was not possible any other way.

It is most important to state that true schools are very scarce, and the majority of these are only centers of study and practice of elementary principles. As an explanation we will divide these schools into three groups:

1. Study centers. These comprise the great majority.

2. Schools connected to a superior occult force. These are extremely scarce.

3. Schools of initiation. These schools teach the mystical process of initiation in a real, and not symbolic, manner. They are extremely scarce and virtually unknown.

In practice, any person can enter the study centers as mentioned in the first point. It is sufficient to pay the dues and to attend regularly, or maintain constant communication in the case of instructions by correspondence.

It is useful for a person to belong to one of these study centers as they prepare the individual for higher things, and at the same time awaken in him greater spiritual restlessness. We could say that these groups represent the exoteric or external side of Hermetic doctrine.

Under the second point, we find the schools which are actually linked to a higher power, that is, in some manner they are connected with the Stellar Men. The student can get a lot of benefit from these schools.

Under the third point, we have the initiatic schools which are the only ones that can truly lead the student through the process of initiation in a real and not symbolic manner. These schools are characterized by a leading Master, and are the bearers of the celestial fire, which is transmitted to the student during initiation. It is essential to establish that initiation is not, as some naive people believe, a ritual ceremony practiced in a temple.


The word initiation designates the entire process of mutation of the human larva into a Stellar Man, which is brought about and directed by the Masters of these schools.

Physically, where are these schools of initiation located?

Their location is not important, because in spite of the fact that their number is very small, all candidates who truly and powerfully yearn for spiritual superiority and have the capacity for it will surely find someone to guide them to one of these "workshops."

We must now speak of candidates for wisdom. We know there are individuals who have gone through every existing school searching for what they desire, but have never found it, probably because they do not know what they really want. They generally have the most fantastic ideas in this respect and honestly believe that the only true Masters are in India or in some mysterious and inaccessible place in the East. Others believe that it is necessary to communicate with flying saucers by telepathy in order to receive instructions from their hypothetical crews, who are assumed to be possessors of esoteric knowledge.

There are also those who believe only in spiritualism, parapsychology, or the teachings of Freemasonry. The more naive demand all types of credentials, secret scrolls, or material proof which attest to and establish the authority of the school. There are also those who, influenced by the publicity, fame, or prestige of some institution, believe it the best to be found.


The reality is that the candidate is not capable of choosing, and even less capable of effectively judging the goodness or defects of the institute he enters. If he was able to choose, it would be because his spiritual vision surpasses that of the instructors he is seeking, in which case there would be nothing they could teach him.


Only the illumination of his own spirit would guide the candidate in this case. Far back in antiquity, the candidates for initiation into certain esoteric brotherhoods were given two glasses of wine or liquor, and were warned that one contained a deadly poison, leaving the neophyte to choose one and drink all its contents. If he did not accept this, he was immediately rejected.


We know that sometimes it was only a trick to weigh the courage and decision of the individual, but in other cases the contents were truly toxic. The premise was that if the individual drank the toxic drink, he would have already failed, because he was not illuminated by his divine spark in the search he had embarked upon.

It is very important that the seeker should analyze the motives guiding him, for in this way he will avoid much unpleasantness and loss of time. We know that one of the most unpleasant aspects of human behavior is the fact that sapiens lies to himself with astounding frequency. His lies are so astute, subtle, and perfect, that he may waste many years of his life, only to discover that he was being cheated and he himself was the charlatan.


The object of this self-deception has been very precisely identified by psychology, and generally refers to the individual's need for a high level of self-esteem.

There are many techniques for self-deception and these are grouped under the general category of "rationalization." Professor Gordon Allport gives this definition:

"Reason fits one's impulses and beliefs to the world of reality; rationalization fits one's concept of reality to one's impulses and beliefs. Reasoning reveals the real causes of our actions, and rationalization finds good reasons, to justify them."

Here we have a treasure of psychological wisdom in a few words! Unfortunately no one makes use of this, in spite of the fact that it may give many people the key to the tragic events of their lives.

The individual lies to himself in order to avoid facing his internal conflicts, and thereby attains a momentary relief, but never a solution. This is why it is vital that anyone interested in Hermeticism or various esoteric movements should examine his motives.

  • Is there an authentic and true desire for spiritual superiority within him?

  • Does he feel true spiritual thirst?

  • Or is he only guided by the selfish desire to attain power, which will give him prestige, popularity, and recognition?

It may be that the individual is a potential convert for any collective movement, and who (as is frequently the case) seeks only to rid himself of his insignificant or undesirable "I," by merging with some mass movement. The individual may be paranoid, an extremely neurotic personality, a failure, a vain individual who requires an audience, or an intellectual impelled solely by curiosity.


It is possible that he is fleeing from himself or from the world, or that a great amorous disillusionment, or his terrible loneliness, may lead him to seek any company whatsoever. Others may claim magic powers or secrets in order to obtain money or to attract the opposite sex, or they may simply wish to open their "third eye" without really having the least idea what it means. In any of these or similar cases, it is easily inferred that the individual is not led by a genuine desire for spiritual superiority, and therefore it is preferable that he should refrain from requesting Hermetic light, as he is not prepared for it, and is not really interested in it.

This does not mean that a person in any of the above cases does not possess, in direct proportion to the problem afflicting him, a real desire for spiritual advancement.


Many times the most spiritual persons are those who encounter more than the usual amount of problems in their terrestrial life; they have more difficulty adapting their psychic vehicles, which are more subtle than usual, to the vicissitudes of our civilization. In many cases it occurs that a student enters a Hermetic brotherhood and cannot remain there because of the enormous difficulties that arise along the way.


For this reason, the majority of the candidates may be lost, as it is very simple to become part of a study group or contemplative school where there is no real initiation. If the student enters an initiatic school, he must face and overcome the phantom of himself if he desires to reach the light.


Nature will test him without mercy in order to establish his true spiritual quality. In Hermetic alchemy it is said that "to make gold there must be gold, even an infinitesimal fraction of it." So, through the tests it will be known with absolute certainty how much spiritual gold the candidate has. If he does not have this golden seed, all mutation will be impossible and the individual must be prepared to fight during this life in order to create his tiny portion of spiritual gold, which will enable him to go forward in his next incarnation.

It also happens that once within a Hermetic brotherhood, the student may remain there for several years, blind and deaf to the teaching he receives, without being able to weigh the immense value of the school and the knowledge he is receiving. This situation may last forever or be overcome one day by an illuminating experience that opens the individual's eyes forever.

The lack of progress or success is generally due to the fact that the individual does not make sufficient effort, limiting the work he does. In order not to deceive anyone, it must be stated that Hermeticism is not in any way for those who are lazy or cherish their comfort. On the contrary, it is for those who are willing to make titanic efforts toward evolution.


Here we have touched a point which we have already spoken of, but it is necessary to analyze this point many times in order to understand it. We refer to the fact that the layman always thinks of occultism, magic, or Hermeticism as a system which will permit him, by the use of magic formulae, to obtain more rapidly and without any significant effort, that which would normally be attained only after much perseverance, for example that wealth, love, work, or special favors will be gained through the intervention of higher powers.


As already stated, people always believe what they want to believe; what is convenient for their purposes. In this case, all that entails avoiding effort and obtaining things by miraculous procedures will be immediately accepted by the populace. Without doubt, the tale of Aladdin and his Magic Lamp and A Thousand and One Arabian Nights were written by a loafer, unconsciously projecting his occult dreams.


This does not mean that these marvels are not possible, but they can in no way be an "abracadabra" for obtaining things with little work or effort. One of the Hermetic Principles states that "every cause produces an effect," which would be potentially equivalent to the action that gave it origin, and will have a period of gestation or realization according to the importance of what is sought.


There is no miracle for obtaining things without effort, as if they could fall from heaven. This would be an arbitrary alienation of the cosmic order, and if this capricious act were possible, the matter integrating the Universe would break up. In the Cosmos there are neither miracles nor chance, only the Law of Cause and Effect, and the natural phenomena produced by the laws of Nature which are little known. What is called a miracle is only a natural occurrence, but of an unknown nature.

There are also those who do not find because they do not wish to find, for if they were to do so, they would be obliged to face the arduous problem of overcoming themselves in order to evolve. They know this beforehand, and it frightens them. On the other hand, to turn into an eternal seeker requires no great effort; just the opposite, it enables the individual to give free rein to his most audacious dreams without any danger of misfortune.


By surrendering himself to dreamlike fantasies, the perpetual explorer avoids facing the real opportunity of fulfilling himself in a genuine manner. It is very easy to dream for thirty years or more that one is becoming more perfect as the days go by, and that one is on the road to spiritual perfection. Naturally this fantasy, according to the degree of self-deception, makes life easier and more bearable for the individual, but one day he must face the cruel truth.

Without wishing to offend anyone and only to make known what is true, it is necessary to consider that there are as many types of schools as there are types of individuals. There are schools for those who arrive into the light of Hermetic teaching for the first time in their chain of incarnations. There are schools for the greatly evolved, for people who are very intelligent, stupid, simple, for those who have failed in their initiation in their past lives, for masters punished by the occult judges. There are schools of white magic and also of black magic.

We have already mentioned the danger of those who are psychologically sick taking refuge in Hermeticism as a means of escaping their internal problems, or using Hermeticism as an incentive for their most exalted dreams. Much more dangerous is the lamentable case of becoming a disciple of a sick master. Are there sick masters? Certainly there are, and this is explained by the ambiguity of the word "Master" and the fact that the human brain has a ceiling of resistance, and beyond that limit it may become unbalanced.

Let us take the case of an individual who has gathered much esoteric knowledge, but who has not evolved spiritually as a real Stellar Man due to insufficient internal cleanliness and not having been able to overcome his mental disturbances arising from frustrations or diverse complexes (remember that mental disturbance is not a synonym for in sanity).


This individual, at any given time, for reasons not necessary to analyze, may found a school and transmit teachings which naturally will be distorted by this master's psychological disturbances. This does not mean that the teachings transmitted by this man will be false; on the contrary, they could be entirely true in theory.


Here we must cite an aphorism of great esoteric significance which says,

"correct methods in the hands of incorrect men function incorrectly; incorrect methods used by correct men function correctly."

This refers to the fact that true knowledge in the hands of an individual who has morally, emotionally, or mentally gone astray will act deviously, and the one who receives this teaching will experience a negative reaction as a result.


On the other hand, it could happen that a man of integrity and purity could be mistaken in some of the knowledge he possesses. In this case, we have not the least doubt that magically the final result will be adequate and correct. Naturally, the ideal would be an individual of integrity with accurate knowledge. This explains why the black magicians may possess great esoteric knowledge, but their goal and true purposes are never known, as their object is always to deceive the student in their schools, to make use of him in a covert manner for their own ends. It is thus they always exploit the weaknesses of their followers, making them conceive all kinds of great illusions for the future.

Returning to the case we pointed out regarding a sick master, this individual is generally completely sincere and is convinced that he is the sole possessor of the truth and knowledge. One of the most outstanding characteristics of these disturbed individuals is their self worship, which is so overwhelming that they are completely convinced they are God himself incarnated on Earth, and naturally are infallible and omniscient.


They are never mistaken, because they are always right. The loss of a sense of self-criticism and their self glorification is easily recognized by the language they use in referring to themselves, as all their tales are always directed toward showing how they are powerful, wise, intelligent, and infallible.


Any psychiatrist would find any of these men to be classic case studies. We must realize that it is easy for a paranoid person and even a schizophrenic to have access to esoteric knowledge and adopt the role of Master. Nevertheless, it is relatively easy to recognize them: self worship, insane infallibility, self deification, self glorification, and a supposed monopoly on the truth will generally be the most outstanding characteristics of these men.


initiation may derail an individual from his purpose of spiritual perfection and lead him to a delirium of greatness and megalomania, within which he confuses the truth he has been exposed to with the dreams and illusions knit together in his unconscious state. That is, there is an "initiatic abortion."

For example, consider the case of an individual who was not able to cleanse his soul, but who attained knowledge of certain things and was converted into the shadow of light. The devil always uses inverted truth to confuse people. That which is demonic is only the divine inverted.

There are also schools whose real purpose is not initiation, but politics, and they use the organization as a screen to recruit followers. Their real purpose is not to form Stellar Men, but to enlarge the battalions of certain ideological systems.

One last warning with regard to the schools: always distrust those which praise the individual's self-esteem with repeated assurances that "he is a very evolved person," "very spiritual," or "very intelligent and prepared."

In some centers this system of flattery is used, either brazenly or subtly, as a method of using the student for purposes of which he is unaware. Lies, skillfully dosed and directed, are used there as a weapon for handling the student, exploiting his base passions with a promise that he will unfailingly attain his desires. In the same way, we must distrust those who teach without asking anything in return, like a romantic Jesus Christ. If teachings are given gratis, it is because they are of no value. That which is valuable to possess always requires something of equivalent value in return.

Many pseudomasters say that "Teachings must be free." We state something absolutely different:

true Teachings cannot be bought, as they are not for sale. But it is necessary that the student contribute something of value to those who instruct him—either to the school, or to the physical Master. This is an occult law which cannot be violated.

In conclusion, we insist that a school must always have a Master, because without one, being limited to just transmitting a legacy of the past, there can be no disciples, since in order to have students, there must be a Master. It does not matter if the instructor at the head of an esoteric brotherhood has not reached the stature of a "great Master," because not everyone can reach this.


What is important is that this individual be effectively well-oriented and be a person who is straight, healthy, and pure. The seeker has no other manner of finding the Master other than by his own internal aspiration. The stronger his desire for truth and freedom, the more certain it is that he will find what he is seeking.


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