Hermes to Tat: Concerning prayer and worship
The hermetic texts were written 2000 years ago or more. We know that they were written by different authors using recurring characters like Hermes Trismegistus and his students Tat and Asclepius to impart timeless wisdom to the readers. We wondered if it was possible to write a modern hermetic text in line with the ancient authentic hermetic texts. Below is our effort.
I imparted yesterday’s discourse to you, O Asclepius, so today it is right to give it to Tat, as I consider it necessary to follow up that discourse and speak in detail about the subject of prayer and worship. Let me tell you what I have heard Agathos Daimon say concerning this.
Tat – O father, I sit at your feet, attentively listening to your story about your teacher.
Hermes – My son, when Agathos Daimon was a student he was sent by his teacher to visit the ancient cemetery outside the city. When he arrived there he saw that the door was locked. He was waiting, wondering what to do, when a man arrived. The man said a short prayer, the door opened and the man went in. Agathos Daimon was surprised by what he saw happening. He wondered who that man was. As he had work to do, he was there on the order of his teacher, he went quickly inside to visit the cemetery and the people that are buried there.
Tat – O father, you have filled us with excitement and a longing to hear more.
Hermes – Then be silent and listen my son as I continue. Agathos Daimon remembered a friend of his that was buried there. He went to visit the grave. When he arrived at the grave he saw the man in front of him, already at that grave. The man said: “How young to die. Only two years old.” Agathos Daimon was surprised, he thought he was at the wrong grave. When the man left he looked at the grave and saw that it was not the grave of a two-year old child, but of his friend who died at 70 years old.
Tat – O father, He must have been very confused.
Hermes – Indeed, my son. Agathos Daimon went to another grave. He found the man already there, saying: “Such a pity, a three-year-old.” Agathos Daimon decided to follow the man. Every time he visited a grave the man stood in front of it, saying “six-month-old”, “eight month old”, “Two years old.” Nobody was more than five years old in that graveyard. Agathos Daimon was surprised and he wanted to talk to that man to learn what he was saying. He looked for him, but the man had disappeared.
Tat – What did Agathos Daimon do?
Hermes – Stay attentive, my son! He went back to his teacher. He told him about this strange man and what he was saying standing in front of the graves. His teacher said: “My son, I sent you there to learn a lesson. That man in front of you said the truth. That man in front of you was Poimandres. He was teaching you a lesson. These people that he mentioned, two years, three years, this is the amount of time they spend with God. This is the amount of time from their lives that they have spent in their worship and service of God.”
Tat. – O father, I am confused. What did he mean by this?
Hermes – My son, listen as I will explain it to you. How many times do we pray a day? Two or three times? How long do we pray? How many minutes? Maybe ten minutes each time? Maybe you pray as long as the priests in the temple. Maybe 20 minutes? Three times 20 is 60 minutes, so an hour. One hour a day. How many hours a week? Seven hours a week. Not even a full working day. That is 28 hours a month. A little bit more than a day. A year? That is 12 days a year. If you are 55 years, your worship consists of not even two years. If you become 80 years old, your worship is less than three years. O Tat, how much prayer and worship did the five-year olds at the cemetery do?
Hermes – O father, you have spoken divinely, truly, and for the benefit of all. You have taught us an important lesson. May we become old in our prayer and worship!
H. – May we indeed, my son.
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