The Emerald Tablet of Hermes Trismegistus

The truth, sans untruth, most true and certain:
As below thus above, as above thus below,
these make when unified the miracles of the One.
All things are One, and all things, by Work
and Rework of the One, from the One they come.
’Tis sired and mothered by Sun and Moon,
waxed in Wind’s womb, and wet-nursed by Earth.
All the world’s works of wonder it causes;
its power is whole, complete and entire.
If to earth it is turned, then earth and fire
are separated surely, and the subtle from the gross,
when acting with care and artful wisdom.
It ascends from earth, it descends from heaven,
and united thus, ’tis naturally the lord
over the above and over the below.
You gain this way the glory of the world,
and out thus drive all of darkness.
’Tis the force o’er forces that fulfills mastery:
the subtle it subdues, the solid it penetrates.
Thus the micro accords with the macro in the cosmos,
and the world entire in this way was formed.
Wonders manifold do wax from it,
manifested hence by the means here given.
Thus here I’m called Hermes, Thrice-Greatest,
unifying the three parts of universal philosophy.
This is the sum entire of the Solar Work.

*********

This is my poetic rendering (in my usual Germanic alliterative meter) of the classic (and short) hermetic text known as the Emerald Tablet. In preparing this, I consulted the many translations and versions collected at: <https://www.sacred-texts.com/alc/emerald.htm>.

Copyright © 2020 Eirik Westcoat.
All rights reserved.

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