Many / One

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Hermetica
Walter Scott, translator
The ancient Greek and Latin writings which contain religious or philosophic teachings ascribed to Hermes Trismegistus. From the Introduction: "If one were to try to sum up the Hermetic teaching in one sentence, I can think of none that would serve the purpose better than the sentence, 'Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.'"

1 "God is all things; from him are all things; and all things are dependent on his will, and on his inimitable wisdom."

2 "The Good is the one thing which is the source of all things, and supplies all things at all times."

3 "All these souls which shift about from place to place throughout the Kosmos are, so to speak, parted off and portioned out from one soul, even the soul of the universe."

4 "There is not, and has never been, and never will be in the Kosmos anything that is dead. For it was the Father's will that the Kosmos, as long as it exists, should be a living being." Libellus XII:15b

5 "For all things that exist are in God, and are made by God, and are dependent on him, whether they be things that put forth activity by means of their bodies, or things that effect movement by means of soul-stuff, or things that generate life by means of vital breath, or things that receive into themselves the bodies that life has quitted. And there will never come a time when anything that exists will cease to be; for God contains all things, and there is nothing which is not in God, and nothing in which God is not. Nay, I would rather say, not that God contains all things, but that, to speak the full truth, God is all things." Libellus IX:9

6 "Then God will look on that which has come to pass and will stay the disorder by the counterworking of his will, which is the good. He will call back to the right path those who have gone astray; he will cleanse the world from evil, now washing it away with waterfloods, now burning it out with fiercest fire, or again expelling it by war and pestilence. And thus he will bring back his world to its former aspect, so that the Kosmos will once more be deemed worthy of worship and wondering reverence, and God, the maker and restorer of the mighty fabric, will be adored by the men of that day with unceasing hymns of praise and blessing. Such is the new birth of the Kosmos; it is a making again of all things good, a holy and awe-striking restoration of all nature; and it is wrought in the process of time by the eternal will of God." Asclepius III

7 "The world has been made by God's providence."

8 "It is manifest that the Maker is one; for soul is one, and life is one, and matter is one."

9 "God is the first of all things, and the universe is divine, and nature is divine."

10 "God does not ignore man, but acknowledges him to the full, and wills to be acknowledged by him. And this alone, even the knowledge of God, is man's salvation; this is the ascent to Olympus; and by this alone can a soul become good." Libellus X:15a

11 "God is of one nature with the Good."

12 "There are two images of God; the Kosmos is one, and man is another, inasmuch as he, like the Kosmos, is a single whole built up of diverse parts."

13 "All things are full of God."

14 "The Kosmos moves within the very life of eternity, and is contained in that very eternity whence all life issues."

15 "There is nothing that comes to be or has come to be, in which God is not."

16 "All things that come to pass by nature come to pass according to Providence, and there is no place destitute of Providence."

17 "Man is a being of divine nature."

18 "The movements are diverse and many, and the bodies differ one from another, but there is one ordered system which extends through all." Libellus XI:9

19 "God made a law by which he ordained that all the souls alike should be everlasting, inasmuch as they were all made of one substance."

20 "Hearken ye with attentive mind. There was and ever is one thing alone, even Mind, and beside the unity of this one thing, there was nothing else in being. This mind, ever existing in itself, ever encompasses all things with its own light and spirit….There is no god, nor angel, nor daemon, nor any other being, that is outside of Him; for He is Lord and Father of all, and all things are in Him and subject to Him."

21 "It is not difficult to contemplate God in thought, or even, if you will, to see him. Look at the order of the Kosmos; look at…the providence shown in things that have been, and in things that come to be; look at matter filled to the full with life, and see this great god in movement, with all things that are contained in him."

22 "All things are linked together, and connected one with another in a chain extending from the lowest to the highest; so that we see that they are not many, or rather, that all are one. For inasmuch as all things hang on the One and flow from the One, we think indeed that they are many when we look at them apart, but when we regard them as united, we hold them to be one." Asclepius III:19c

23 "The sky is moist and dry, cold and hot, bright and obscured by turns; these are the rapidly alternating forms included under the one ideal or universal form of the sky. The earth is ever passing through many changes of form; it generates produce, it nourishes the produce it has generated, it yields all manner of crops, with manifold differences of quality and quantity; and above all, it puts forth many sorts of trees, differing in the scent of their flowers and the taste of their fruits. Water takes different forms, now standing, and now running. Fire undergoes many changes, and assumes godlike forms;…they are like our mirrors, and reproduce the ideal or universal form in visible copies with rival brilliance."

24 "God makes all things for himself; and all things are parts of God. And inasmuch as all things are parts of him, God is all things. Therefore, in making all things, God makes himself."

25 "Be careful to remember him, the One who is all things, - him who is the creator of all things."

This body of quotes compiled by JoAnn Kite