As the universe

“As within, so without.” In 2017, a surprisingly wise physical therapist said this to me. Just a random remark, during a therapy session, while she was tugging on my arm or something. Who would have ever thought I would get philosophical input during a physical therapy session. Sometimes, I really love people. 

I liked this quote enough to feel the urge to capture it in a quick drawing. While googling (well, ‘duck-duck-going‘) the origin of this quote in 2021, I come across even more wonderful things. Goodreads tells me this quote might be related to the quote below, by Hermes Trismegistus. I’m sticking with the word ‘might’, because as a [former] historian, I know how difficult it is to determine with absolute certainty what some dude said in the xth century B.C. This quote is supposed to be found in the so-called Emerald Tablet [*curiosity and imagination instantly triggered to the max*] [excuse me while I disappear into Wikipedia].

“As above, so below.
As within, so without.
As the universe, so the soul."
Hermes Trismegistus

Wikipedia says: “According to another common interpretation, the verse refers to the structural similarities (…) between the macrocosm (from Greek makros kosmos, “the great world”; the universe as a whole, understood as a great living being) and the microcosm (from Greek mikros kosmos, “the small world”; the human being, understood as a miniature universe.”

Apparently, Hermes Trismegistus was ‘stolen’ later on by the occultists and New Age peoples (no offense, I’m becoming a hippie myself). Worth noting is that apparently, the Arabic texts that are probably the basis for the whole thing have a slightly different phrasing. English translation of the Arabic (according to Wikipedia):

"That which is above, is from that which is below,
and that which is below, is from that which is above."

Original Arabic of the verse in the Emerald Tablet

(image used in the first quote is from Goodreads)