The Kabalion is a study of the Hermetic philosophy of ancient Egypt and Greece. Written by three initiates the Kabalion contains The Seven Hermetic Principles. These secret doctrines based on world old hermetic teachings, help us to understand the nature of reality and of self.
In this summary, I offer my understanding of each of The Seven Hermetic Principles of the Kabalion. All seven principles are interrelated with great interplay between them.
The Seven Hermetic Principles of the Kabalion Explained
The Hermetic Principle Of Mentalism
“The All is Mind; The Universe is Mental.”—The Kybalion.
The truth that all is mind manifests itself when we realize that all outward manifestations of our reality are effectively within the mind or created by the mind. Our material and seemingly solid surroundings have been shown by science to be made up of particles of energy and empty space, which too is energy or information. Even our bodies are comprised of these particles of energy yet all appears and feels seemingly solid. Perhaps the solidity and tangibility of reality is merely our interpretation of the information that we receive through our five senses, fooling our consciousness into believing our world is as we perceive it, when really it's our interpretation of the information.
Perhaps we are each mind/consciousnesses within a sea of energy and information living in a sort of manifested dream. Your experience of your life is still valid and meaningful though of course. Potentially with this knowledge, we can realize the extent to which our mental processes create our experiences, empowering us to create the life we desire.
Another aspect of the Hermetic Principle of Mentalism is the extent to which our own perceptions, beliefs and attitudes color our experience of reality. One person may perceive a rainy day as terrible because they are unable to enjoy a country walk, and another person perceive rain as great for watering the plants. Two people will perceive a painting differently, an event, a book, a view out of a window, even the meaning of a word. Therefore, the programming of the mind alters reality for each of us. Perhaps trying to find the objective truth in what we perceive might help.
The Hermetic Principle of Correspondence
“As above, so below; as below, so above.”—The Kybalion.
The Hermetic Principle of Correspondence can describe the nature of our reality and all realities, both outwardly and inside ourselves. We draw from this that the laws of our reality are the same no matter what plane of existence we're in. 'As above, so below; in all layers of existence. For example, 'the law of freewill'; that all beings, no matter the dimension, density or universe, all have freewill. We have free will to choose and manifest, therefore we're not merely a set of automatons controlled by any higher power. 'As above, so below' with regards to the law of attraction, as in, we each manifest our personal, and together, our collective reality.
We see the same patterns in reality on all levels. The macro is created very much like the micro; the very large looks similar to the very small. It's a formula for creating all that there is, for example, a solar system looks very much like an atom, a helix nebula looks like an eye, a galaxy looks like a hurricane, and the Fibonacci sequence can be seen in many areas of life.
What about our personal reality? Rather than 'as above, so below', we can say 'as within, so without'. That which is within each of us is reflected on the outside. This ties in very nicely with The Hermetic Principle of Mentalism; your reality is how you've manifested it all along. Everything on the outside corresponds with your inner world. Reality is also rather subjective and subject to our own perceptions and points of view, creating our reality in various ways. For example, if we have developed a distrust of people due to unfavorable past experiences, then our outer world will be filled with untrustworthy people. The next person's inner world is full of trust, therefore their outer world seems to be filled with trustworthy people. Therefore, you can work on your inner world to improve your outer world.
Question your perceptions, beliefs and programming, and perform healing. 'As above, so below' and 'as within, so without'; this pattern is present on all levels.
The Hermetic Principle of Vibration
“Nothing rests; everything moves; everything vibrates.”—The Kybalion.
Movement is everywhere, it is a law of our reality that everything is constantly in motion, nothing stays still. Tesla was quoted as saying; “If you wish to understand the universe, think in terms of energy, frequency and vibration”.
The principle of vibration also applies to us and our own energies and emotions. Our reality also manifests according to our vibration. The one infinite being of creation knows our thoughts, the vibration of our emotions and our feelings, and brings us experience to match; all for our learning and experience.
Nothing is at rest, take an atom and its fundamental particles; it's constantly vibrating. Looking at The Kinetic Theory of Matter, the molecules within a solid vibrate, in a liquid they too vibrate, moving and sliding around each other. The molecules in a gas have space between them and move around even more. Heat something up and the atoms vibrate even faster.
Entropy describes how, given time, everything declines gradually into disorder through movement. A statue for example, will eventually wear away into dust. An abandoned city will ultimately return to nature. Perhaps this is disorder from our point of view but in reality, things return to their natural state through constant movement and change.
The Unified Field, the one energetic information field of our reality, is said to consist of waves of probability, waves that vibrate at a certain frequency. The electromagnetic spectrum too involves vibration of certain wavelengths, some we can perceive for example visible light, and others we can't such as UV light and radio waves. Regarding our emotions and our own vibrational state, The Kabalion says;
“They teach that all manifestation of thought, emotion, reason, will or desire, or any mental state or condition, are accompanied by vibrations, a portion of which are thrown off and which tend to affect the minds of other persons by “induction.” This is the principle which produces the phenomena of “telepathy”; mental influence, and other forms of the action and power of mind over mind”.
Therefore, an awareness of our own vibrational state is key to self-awareness, self-realization, finding happiness and peace, and these vibrations are thrown off and affect others who influence us too. In being aware of our own vibration, we can attempt to stabilize or tune it to a desired frequency for optimal experience.
The Hermetic Principle of Polarity
“Everything is Dual; everything has poles; everything has its pair of opposites; like and unlike are the same; opposites are identical in nature, but different in degree; extremes meet; all truths are but half‑truths; all paradoxes may be reconciled.”—The Kybalion.
Another law, The Principle of Polarity, explains a lot about the shifts and swings in our reality. Polarity implies opposites, for example, north and south, big and small, happy or sad, and hot or cold. In fact opposites are extremes is the same thing. Happy or sad describes extremes of how we are feeling, it's one concept if you bring them together. Intuitive and logical describe a way of thinking, to ignore or to respond describes the amount of attention paid, and fast and slow describe speed. So you see, poles are an illusion of the mind. The duality we experience in this reality is something that we can recognize for what it is; extremes of one concept.
We can see the oneness in all things therefore and recognize when we are choosing, preferring or judging based on a pole. We can also become aware of the swinging of our moods from pole to pole and attempt to stabilize this. In addition, the measure of the swing in one direction is the measure of the swing to the other, and we can reduce the swings and settle them down.
Our own interpretations of polarity differ between people. One person might perceive the enjoyability of an event as boring and another person perceive it as exciting. Perceiving polarity is often therefore subjective. Where does fast end and slow begin? I might perceive my friend is driving fast, and she might believe she's going quite slow. We can make judgments of others based on this subjectivity and unfairly pigeonhole them. One person might perceive another as reckless when they perceive themselves as adventurous.
The Kabalion states that all paradoxes may be reconciled, so we can't speak in absolutes nor make assumptions. We can attempt to combine our perceptions of poles and polarity on our journey towards oneness. By being aware of polarity, it's possible to choose a pole, that's definitely fine to do. I choose to be kind rather than unkind. Awareness of our emotions is also key, and when we're swinging between them, working on settling on contentment perhaps and changing our vibration in this way. The Kybalion states that it is possible to change the vibrations of hate into the vibrations of love in one's own mind and in the minds of others.
The Hermetic Principle of Rhythm
“Everything flows, out and in; everything has its tides; all things rise and fall; the pendulum‑swing manifests in everything; the measure of the swing to the right is the measure of the swing to the left; rhythm compensates.”—The Kybalion.
This describes a fundamental trait of our reality and of our own experiences, and is therefore useful to know. Everything tends to repeat itself in rhythmic cycles as if reality or the code of reality is operating on an algorithm. If our reality is one infinite being that we are each all part of, it may be creating repeating rhythmic cycles with variation for all beings to experience, and therefore itself to experience. Then the one infinite being or creation, can experience every variation of every event and circumstance possible. Examples are as follows; civilizations rise and fall, as do world powers and governments, then there's weather cycles, the seasons, lunar cycles, day and night, the tides, and birth and death.
Rhythmic cycles repeat within the parameters of the laws of this reality but with variation, like The Principle of Polarity. We have rhythms of the poles, like rainy and sunny, economic growth and decline, our moods seem to not only swing from pole to pole but do so with rhythm. Therefore, we can learn to accept and work with our natural rhythms with a view to reducing the swing of the poles, release resistance to unpleasant emotion and working with it to heal. Take comfort that due to The Hermetic Principle of Rhythm, bad times will end and good times will begin. Without the bad times we wouldn't know how to appreciate the good times anyway. Fashion trends, political opinion, action and inaction, are more examples of rhythmic cycles. We need not believe we will always be poor or always be lonely.
So when applying The Principle of Rhythm to the mental states of people, we can learn to use them rather than be used by them, for example, when feeling active and motivated, we can use this time to create. When we inevitably feel tired and worn out, instead of pushing oneself on, we can accept this feeling and take time to recharge. By amending our lives to take advantage of these natural rhythms and not fighting them, we release much resistance.
The Hermetic Principle of Cause and Effect
“Every Cause has its Effect; every Effect has its Cause; everything happens according to Law; Chance is but a name for Law not recognized; there are many planes of causation, but nothing escapes the Law.”—The Kybalion.
When something happens, anything at all, there's a cause for it, according to The Kybalion. The Kybalion says that things don't just happen by chance however small, there's always a cause. A mere thought can cause us to take action several days later, a tree grows better because the land was fertilized by rotting leaves blown from another tree, I choose blue curtains instead of green because I saw a picture of some curtains in a magazine three years ago which I don't consciously remember but it had an effect on me. Even when you roll dice, it falls on a certain number because you picked it up and threw it a certain way, it started off on a certain other number, the surface friction of the table and the bounce all factored in and made it land a certain way up. Even tiny things, tiny causes, create effects, such as smiling at someone; you could change their day and how they feel, resulting in them taking a completely different set of actions.
Circumstances and events attract to us due to our beliefs and the vibration we're holding. This causes all manner of effects in our reality. We can have better control over our reality by perceiving ourselves as a 'causer' rather than being at the mercy of effects. This eliminates bad luck and a sense of futility, that what we're doing will have no effect. It will, it always does. So do some causing.
The Kybalion tells us that 'They (masters) help to play the game of life, instead of being played and moved about by other wills and environment'. So we need not be at the mercy of those with stronger wills and positions of power, not be swept along by circumstances. We can put up boundaries, stop things if necessary or take action. The causes you initiate do have effects. Also, becoming aware of The Hermetic Principle of Cause and Effect, we can decide to not be affected by others' moods, unfair opinions and actions, limiting beliefs, time and stress pressures, and we understand that there are causes for how we feel.
The Hermetic Principle of Gender
“Gender is in everything; everything has its Masculine and Feminine Principles; Gender manifests on all planes.”—The Kybalion
Gender is in everything, in all planes of existence. We're not just talking about sex here, and when I speak about 'the masculine', I'm talking about masculine energies, and about the feminine, I'm talking about feminine energies.
The masculine and feminine genders catalyze each other, always generating and regenerating, not only in reproduction but the energies are required in the creation of movement, actions and the vibrations of everything. We see every Hermetic Principle of The Kybalion coming together.
Every biological male has feminine elements and every biological female has masculine elements, each to varying degrees. On the level of mind, The Hermetic Principle of Gender can apply thusly:
The masculine can represent; reason, logic, analytical thought, drive, power and will.
The feminine can represent; creativity, intuition, imagination, feeling, emotion, empathy and nurturing.
In addition, the logical left brain is characterized by masculine energies, and the intuitive creative right brain, the feminine energies. Now, we all have both a left brain and a right brain, but rely on each to varying degrees. Imagine a person (male or female) who is highly logical and analytical, driven and motivated. They are very much in masculine energies. Now imagine someone (male or female) who's a bit of a dreamer, perhaps lacking drive, but very creative and caring of other people. They are high in feminine energies. Most people are a mixture of these traits and you might therefore identify with some of them.
So in work, the masculine energies would provide the drive and will to work, but the feminine energies create the output and nurture its growth with feeling. The Hermetic Principle of Polarity applies here too as the masculine and feminine are each poles of the same thing; gender. We can become aware of where we may lie on this spectrum, and choose to balance between or towards one pole depending on what feels right to us and makes us happy.
Recognizing these energies in other people and seeing their own personal balance, helps us to understand them. An architect for example, is a good balance of the masculine and feminine in work because they need creativity to create designs, and emotion to make them beautiful and inspiring. Yet an analytical and logical mind is necessary to plan and structure the designs and do the math. Socially one might seem rather cold if relying on logic with little emotion, but this is not required to become a great mathematician. No two beings are the same, but we can become aware of The Hermetic Principle of Gender, enhancing our perception of ourselves and reality, and create better social and organizational systems with both the masculine and feminine touch intertwined.
The Kybalion is in print and you can purchase it here.
I hope you found this summary and explanation of The Seven Hermetic Principles of The Kybalion useful. I have created a video on each of the hermetic principles individually and in greater depth, here is the playlist.
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