The principle of mentalism

Hermetic principles and geometry 2/8


« The Whole is Spirit ; the Universe is Mental. » [1]

The prin­ciple of men­ta­lism was the first of the seven prin­ciples sta­ted by Hermes Trismegistus. It is the Kybalion, pre­sen­ted in the intro­duc­to­ry article of this series, which divulges its tea­ching and wis­dom. Or at least that touches the bark, because it must be reco­gni­zed that this book remains above all in the image of the Hermetists : mys­te­rious !

Is it even pos­sible to unra­vel this mys­te­ry ? I do not know. In any case, it seems to me that it is pos­sible to illu­mi­nate it with other tea­chings. Thus, crea­ting bridges bet­ween the her­me­tic prin­ciples and the theo­ry of the connec­ted uni­verse of Nassim Haramein brings an addi­tio­nal key to unders­tan­ding, in this case through geo­me­try.

Let’s not get car­ried away, howe­ver, because even from this point of view, the prin­ciple of men­ta­lism is far from obvious ! Its geo­me­tri­cal repre­sen­ta­tion mani­fests itself in the sim­plest, most pecu­liar and most enig­ma­tic form : the point. Paradoxically, this is what makes men­ta­lism a prin­ciple that can­not be igno­red. It is the foun­da­tion of our uni­verse, and the exis­tence of the other six prin­ciples is based on it. So much so that the one can­not be stu­died and inter­pre­ted without the other. Throughout this series of articles, one prin­ciple may be found to reso­nate with ano­ther.

But for now, let’s dis­co­ver the prin­ciple of men­ta­lism and its tea­ching : « The Whole is Spirit ; the Universe is Mental ».


Understand the basics of the principle of mentalism

The Whole is Spirit

The Whole is the fun­da­men­tal truth. Now « that which is the fun­da­men­tal truth, the sub­stan­tial rea­li­ty, needs no spe­cial name, but enligh­te­ned men call it The Whole. And « in its essence, the Whole is unk­no­wable ».

Is trying to unders­tand the Whole would be a sen­se­less chal­lenge ? There are chances, because an intel­lec­tual approach would pass by the men­tal, but the Whole is not Mental, it is Spirit.

forces-de-creationSo, if we can­not define the Whole, per­haps can we define Spirit ? For Hermetists, Spirit is the living power, the ani­ma­ted force, or the essence of life. If we can­not appre­hend it direct­ly, we can use the prin­ciple of cor­res­pon­dence [2] to see its mani­fes­ta­tion on a human scale. Perhaps the best com­pa­ri­son is the forces that ani­mate a woman when she gives birth. Even if the ori­gin of these forces pro­ba­bly remains an abso­lute mys­te­ry for her… And for good rea­son, it is the Whole ! What might confuse you more, howe­ver, is that the cause of the mys­te­ry itself has no cause…

« The Whole is above all Cause and Effect, except when it Wants to become a Cause. It is then that the Principle mani­fests itself. »


Finally, The Whole is its own rea­son, its own law and its own actions. From the Whole, which is « One » with its rea­son, its law and its actions, derive all other laws. Notably the laws of our uni­verse. But how did the Whole create them ?

The prin­ciple of cor­res­pon­dence, once again, allows us to think that the Whole creates [3] the uni­verse men­tal­ly by a pro­cess iden­ti­cal to the one that allows man to create men­tal images. The Whole can­not create other­wise than mentally.


The Universe is Mental

« The Universe is Mental ; it is contai­ned in the soul of the Whole. »


If the uni­verse crea­ted by the Whole is men­tal, its ulti­mate rea­li­ty is Spirit. Hermeticists argue that the uni­verse is and is not at the same time. This is the divine para­dox brought to light by the prin­ciple of pola­ri­ty, which we will explore later. Let us sim­ply say here that the uni­verse, and a for­tio­ri our world, have a rea­li­ty from our point of view, and more par­ti­cu­lar­ly from the point of view of our senses. At the same time, the uni­verse is only a men­tal crea­tion of the Whole, and in this sense, it is an illu­sion.

The prin­ciple of men­ta­lism also teaches us that the uni­verse is both visible and invi­sible. Better still, the visible exists first in the invi­sible because the mind is first, the mani­fes­ta­tion second.

That is the theory.


Practice, in this case human expe­rience, can blur the lines somew­hat… Having spo­ken about the mind on seve­ral occa­sions on this blog [4], I know some­thing about it ! In various ways, my articles have tried to show how and to what extent we can lose our­selves in the mind, with a more or less pro­noun­ced awa­re­ness of this phe­no­me­non [5]. Too often, the mind is our pri­vi­le­ged tool of unders­tan­ding, pro­cee­ding by default to the ana­ly­sis of our inner life and of our envi­ron­ment, even to the ana­ly­sis of itself.

The prin­ciple of men­ta­lism brings a dif­ferent pers­pec­tive. It teaches us that the pri­ma­ry func­tion of the mind is to create. This is its spi­ri­tual dimen­sion, so to speak. Not reco­gni­zing it implies a use of the mind limi­ted to its ana­ly­ti­cal and intel­lec­tual aspects. However, since we have to imple­ment its rea­li­ty any­way, this also implies an uncons­cious use of its real crea­tive poten­tialn [6].


The principle of mentalism or creative thinking

The prin­ciple of men­ta­lism embo­dies the unders­tan­ding that eve­ry­thing in the uni­verse — and thus in our own expe­rience — is crea­ted by thought. There is nothing in the mate­rial uni­verse that is crea­ted by any other pro­cess. « Thoughts are things » said Albert Einstein [7].

What we think becomes a mate­rial rea­li­ty… and we think a lot ! We send and receive thoughts 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. In this pro­cess, our own thoughts are invol­ved, but also those of others, because we often uncons­cious­ly accept them as our own. The Hermetists say that « only spi­rits are active and pene­tra­ting » while « bodies have no action on bodies ».

Divine atten­tion is at the cen­ter of the men­tal dyna­mics of crea­tion. Although it is sup­por­ted by the ener­gy of the Whole, it has deve­lo­ped its own ener­gy, which is men­tal, in order to exist and mani­fest. We live and inter­act within this men­tal ener­gy [8]. We are constant­ly evol­ving, just like the crea­tion of the Spirit of the Whole, which is itself in constant evolution.

This dyna­mic finds a remar­kable echo in the theo­ry of Nassim Haramein, who also des­cribes a lear­ning pro­cess conti­nuous­ly at work in the uni­verse. The prin­ciple of cor­res­pon­dence allows me to sug­gest that you read the article How do we learn ? which explains this pro­cess from the human scale to the scale of the universe.

The notion of crea­tive thought also trans­lates in the Hermeticists’ view into our abi­li­ty — as human beings — to trans­mute our own men­tal states in order to improve them. This is per­haps the most impor­tant tea­ching of the Kybalion. It is up to us to become aware of our men­tal capa­ci­ties in order to bet­ter mas­ter the 7 prin­ciples rather than being sub­jec­ted to them.


Mental transmutation



Mental trans­mu­ta­tion is also cal­led « men­tal alche­my ». As I men­tio­ned in the pre­vious article, behind the phi­lo­so­pher’s stone sought by the alche­mists would hide nothing more or less than a men­tal pro­cess. Nothing sur­pri­sing since the uni­verse is men­tal you say ? Of course it is. I just want to empha­size the fun­da­men­tal dif­fe­rence bet­ween the inner action that men­tal trans­mu­ta­tion repre­sents and the « gold rush » indu­ced by the quest for the phi­lo­so­pher’s stone in the phy­si­cal universe.

For Hermetists, men­tal trans­mu­ta­tion is the « art of pola­ri­za­tion ». The lat­ter is mani­fes­ted by the exis­tence or appea­rance of anta­go­nis­tic poles during a phe­no­me­non. The prin­ciple of pola­ri­ty teaches us that these poles, appa­rent­ly oppo­sed, are in rea­li­ty of the same nature. They are vibra­to­ry, and only a dif­fe­rence of degrees sepa­rates them. Mental trans­mu­ta­tion then consists of chan­ging one’s level of vibra­tion to pass from one degree to ano­ther [9]. This is why the Hermetists give us the fol­lo­wing advice :

« To des­troy a bad per­iod of vibra­tion, put into acti­vi­ty the prin­ciple of pola­ri­ty and concen­trate your thought on the oppo­site pole of the one you want to anni­hi­late. Kill the unde­si­rable by chan­ging its polarity. »

Hermetic tea­ching consi­ders vibra­tion - not time — as the fourth dimen­sion of our uni­verse, as I men­tio­ned in the pre­vious article. We can see a direct appli­ca­tion here, which would be, when we go through a bad per­iod of vibra­tion, to find a way to feel bet­ter right away. The idea is not to enter the tem­po­ral dimen­sion. This is one of the keys to a cor­rect appli­ca­tion of the law of attraction.


The law of attraction

This law is not strict­ly spea­king part of the Hermetic tea­ching. Although the authors of the Kybalion speak sibyl­line about the ener­gy of attrac­tion, they only men­tion the law of attrac­tion as an aspect of the prin­ciple of cause and effect. However, the law of attrac­tion can be seen in the back­ground of each of the seven prin­ciples, star­ting with the prin­ciple of mentalism.

In popu­lar thought, it is based on the fact that the mind is crea­tive : we attract what we think. It is up to us to think posi­ti­ve­ly in order to attract favou­rable people and events. Because the oppo­site will also hap­pen and will lead us into a nega­tive spiral.

Mental trans­mu­ta­tion invites us not to put a time limit on what we want. Thus, it is pre­fe­rable to think of our desires in terms of vibra­to­ry change rather than in terms of a tem­po­ral dimen­sion. We can mea­sure the conse­quences of a vibra­to­ry change in time, but the best way to induce this change is to act as if it were alrea­dy there.

The law of attrac­tion teaches that what we expe­rience in our phy­si­cal world ori­gi­nates in the invi­sible world, in our mind. However, what we think about without giving it much impor­tance, posi­ti­ve­ly or nega­ti­ve­ly, will have very lit­tle chance of mani­fes­ting. In order to mate­ria­lize a thought, it is neces­sa­ry to think about it long enough and with enough inten­si­ty. Moreover, the men­tal being com­po­sed of thoughts AND emo­tions, we must also feel good about the thoughts we emit if we want them to mate­ria­lize. Otherwise, our efforts will be counterproductive.

Beyond men­tal trans­mu­ta­tion and the law of attrac­tion, the prin­ciple of men­ta­lism explains the true nature of ener­gy. This is what I pro­pose to explore now.


Principle of mentalism and physical phenomena

The Spirit precedes the energy

To begin with, and in order to bet­ter unders­tand the nature of the Whole and of the uni­verse, a lit­tle voca­bu­la­ry cla­ri­fi­ca­tion is nee­ded. Until the wri­ting of this article, I have not used the term « Spirit » on this blog, but I have often spo­ken of « conscious­ness ». The term « awa­re­ness » allows us to bridge these two terms. This is what I explai­ned, without kno­wing it at the time, in the article on conscious experience :

gradient-conscience-univers« Pure awa­re­ness is stil­l­ness, pre­sence. It is not of the order of expe­rience. However, as pre­sence, awa­re­ness sup­ports the expe­rience of the uni­verse. In other words, it sus­tains the move­ment present eve­ryw­here. This is crea­ted by a dif­fe­ren­tial of conscious­ness, a pola­ri­za­tion from the conscious to the uncons­cious. And this pola­ri­za­tion, as well as the resul­ting move­ment, represent the pre­con­di­tions for the mani­fes­ta­tion of conscious­ness. » [10]

Thus, the Whole, which is spi­rit or awa­re­ness, is alrea­dy conscious of itself. The same is not true of the uni­verse, which is a men­tal crea­tion of the Whole. The uni­verse is in the pro­cess of beco­ming, it becomes aware of itself lit­tle by little.

The Whole is the sub­stan­tial rea­li­ty behind phy­si­cal phe­no­me­na. The Whole is the­re­fore not the mecha­ni­cal ener­gy devoid of Intelligence and Life that scien­tists des­cribe. On the contra­ry, it is the infi­nite living intel­li­gence that the Hermetists call Spirit. It always pre­cedes ener­gy and matter.

This is how it explains the true nature of ener­gy and mat­ter and the way in which we can act on them, par­ti­cu­lar­ly through men­tal trans­mu­ta­tion.


Energy is the basis of matter

The authors of the Kybalion men­tion that by the time the book was publi­shed — in 1908 — science had alrea­dy dis­co­ve­red that mat­ter is ener­gy. Precisely, mat­ter is ener­gy with a very low degree of vibra­tion. At the fun­da­men­tal level, eve­ry­thing is vibra­tion, nothing is solid :

« Atoms are com­po­sed of cor­puscles (…) in a state of acce­le­ra­ted motion, revol­ving around each other, and mani­fes­ting an excee­din­gly rapid state and mode of vibration. »

According to Nassim Haramein, 99.99999% of the mate­rial world is com­po­sed of vacuum ener­gy. There is per­ma­nent feed­back bet­ween vacuum and mat­ter, which allows mat­ter to constant­ly inform itself in order to conti­nue evol­ving. This does not contra­dict the fact that Hermetists consi­der mat­ter to be « ener­gy or inter­rup­ted force ». They are sim­ply two aspects of the same dyna­mic : mat­ter constant­ly alter­nates bet­ween inter­rup­tion and evolution.

The phy­si­cist was par­ti­cu­lar­ly inter­es­ted in cer­tain par­ticles present in the nucleus of atoms : pro­tons. Why ? Because pro­tons are the most stable par­ticles. We know that a pro­ton has been spin­ning at the speed of light at least since the begin­ning of the uni­verse… 13.7 bil­lion years !


The singularity : a physical and philosophical reality

Nassim Haramein also demons­trates that the pro­ton is a black hole, i.e. an object — and more pre­ci­se­ly a geo­me­tric struc­ture — with a sin­gu­la­ri­ty at its cen­ter. This sin­gu­la­ri­ty is like an « infi­nite point », from which mat­ter mani­fests and returns to the unma­ni­fes­ted, accor­ding to the dyna­mics pre­vious­ly des­cri­bed. As the phy­si­cist reminds us, the point is ulti­ma­te­ly the only thing that exists :




Finally, it is as if the black hole were to the cen­ter of the pro­ton what the prin­ciple of men­ta­lism is to the other 6 prin­ciples : a sin­gu­la­ri­ty from which the divi­sions of uni­ty gene­ra­ted by the mind are deployed.

From the point of view of phy­sics, the sin­gu­la­ri­ty repre­sents the can­cel­la­tion of all spins, that is to say the can­cel­la­tion of all the rota­tio­nal move­ments of the par­ticles on them­selves. From the point of view of the Hermetic phi­lo­so­phy, there is nothing out­side the Whole. Therefore, all finite things must be zero in rea­li­ty. Which is just ano­ther way of defi­ning the singularity.

Thus, « the prin­ciple of men­ta­lism alone encom­passes the other six prin­ciples. We will see in the next few articles how the theo­ry of the connec­ted uni­verse echoes this tea­ching, conti­nuing this series with the prin­ciple of cor­res­pon­dence.


Key points


  • Spirit is the living power, the ani­ma­ted force, or the essence of life. The Whole can­not create except mentally.

  • The uni­verse is and is not at the same time, it is a rea­li­ty and an illu­sion ; it is both visible and invisible.

  • The spi­ri­tual dimen­sion of the mind is to create. Its human dimen­sion is often redu­ced to crea­ting pro­blems in order to solve them later !

  • The best way to induce a change is to act as if it were alrea­dy there, in other words to use men­tal trans­mu­ta­tion to act on our own vibra­to­ry state out­side of any tem­po­ral dimension.

  • All finite things must be zero in rea­li­ty, which is equi­va­lent in phy­sics to the can­cel­la­tion of all spins pre­dic­ted by the connec­ted uni­verse theory.




Notes and references


[1] Unless other­wise indi­ca­ted, all quotes are from the Kybalion.
[2] « What is above is like what is below ; what is below is like what is above. The prin­ciple of cor­res­pon­dence allows us to deduce from the dyna­mics obser­ved on our scale how the Whole ope­rates..
[3] I deli­be­ra­te­ly use the present tense to empha­size that the uni­verse was not crea­ted « once and for all » , but that it is in per­pe­tual crea­tion.
[4] You can consult the article Thoughts + emo­tions = men­tal.
[5] On this sub­ject, read the article Does free will exist ?
[6] If the men­tal allows to create, it is not crea­tive. True ins­pi­ra­tion comes from the Spirit.
[7] This sen­tence is some­times attri­bu­ted to Edgar Cayce.
[8] See the article thoughts + emo­tions = men­tal, op.cit.
[9] Note that if it is pos­sible to trans­mute one’s own men­tal states, it is also pos­sible to modi­fy the states of others. In my opi­nion, Madeleine mas­ters this art and put it into prac­tice when I found myself in the emer­gen­cy room : read part 3 of my tes­ti­mo­ny.
[10] To learn more, you can consult the sec­tion dedi­ca­ted to this in the article The conscious expe­rience.



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