Where are you hurrying, O men, you whose minds are clouded because you are drunk with the word that lacks all Gnosis, the word of absolute ignorance that does not agree with you and that you will vomit in the end?
Stop and become sober: see again with the eyes of your heart! And if not all of you can do so, let those at least who can. The malignity of ignorance floods over the whole earth, ruins the soul which is penned up in the body and prevents it from reaching the harbours of salvation.
Therefore, do not allow yourself to be carried along by the violence of the stream, but let those among you who are able to reach the harbours of salvation make use of the counter-current to put into port.
Look for Him who will take you by the hand and lead you to the gates of the Gnosis, where the clear light shines in which there is no darkness; where no one is drunk, but all are sober and look up with their hearts to Him who wishes to be known.
But listen well: His Voice cannot be heard and His Name cannot be pronounced, nor can material eyes view Him. Only the Spirit-Soul is capable of so doing.
That is why you should first tear up the garment you are wearing: the fabric of ignorance, the basis of malignity, the fetter of corruption, the lightless prison, the living death, the corpse with sense-organs, the tomb you are carrying about with you, the robber who is lodged within you who shows his hatred by what he loves and his envy by what he hates.
Such is the hostile garment with which you have enveloped yourself, the garment which, by preventing you from breathing, drags you down to itself, so that you will not regain your sight, whereby you might behold the beauty of Truth and of the Good enclosed in it, and come to hate your garment’s malignity and see through its tricks and snares.
For it makes your sense organs insensitive by closing them off with an abundance of matter and filling them with sinful pleasures, so that you will not hear what is so necessary for you to hear and will not see what you so much need to see.
Inability to accept the mystic experience is more than an intellectual handicap. Lack of awareness of the basic unity of organism and environment is a serious and dangerous hallucination. For in a civilization equipped with immense technological power, the sense of alienation between man and nature leads to the use of technology in a hostile spirit—-to the “conquest” of nature instead of intelligent co-operation with nature.
We cannot live in a world that is not our own, in a world that is interpreted for us by others. An interpreted world is not a home. Part of the terror is to take back our own listening, to use our own voice, to see our own light.
Without consciousness there would, practically speaking, be no world, for the world exists as such only in so far as it is consciously reflected and considered by a psyche. Consciousness is a precondition of being.
Who we were before we were born was the potential of becoming.
And the source of this potential is everywhere.
Do not think that it was only this planet that was brought to life by this potential,
but that there are millions of other worlds, and an infinite number of other universes.
One of many translations of the “Emerald Tablet”