What does as above so below meaning? The phrase “As Above, So Below” is the last line of an ancient Hermetic maxim; it signifies that the human (below) can perceive and understand reality (above) only by analogy with his/her own self (or identity), the microcosm. For example, one can understand the movements of the planets in the sky only by observing oneself.
The phrase as above so below also appears in an ancient Egyptian religious tradition where, as the Wikipedia article states: “It was believed that as the heavenly Nile river flowed into Egypt from Aethiopia (i.e. Ethiopia), the earthly counterpart of this would flow from Egypt back to its source.”
According to a different Hermetic tradition, as mentioned in the Wikipedia article: “As above, so below” (alternatively phrased as “that which is above is like that which is below”) was a common form of esoteric aphorism among various ancient and medieval cultures. The concept was utilized by Hermeticists, Gnostics, and alchemists. It is often used to signify the unity and correspondence of all things, a common principle along with various metaphysical systems. It is similar to another Hermetic phrase: “as without so within”.
As above so below may have been related with what 19th-century occultist Eliphas Levi termed the systole and diastole of the Divine breath, of which he said: “The systole motion causes the descent of the seminal moisture into the conjugal vessel; from that, it rises upward to fructify the astral light in a movement of expansion and dilation.
This is followed by a diastole motion as if inhalation were produced under a pressure which then exhausts itself in a complete expiration. These two motions are the systole and diastole of that great mystery of generation which is prefigured by all creation”.
The phrase “As Above, So Below” appears in many grimoires describing evil summoning rituals, such as The Lesser Key of Solomon. This has led to the phrase being connected to Satanism and demon-summoning, due to misunderstood quotations from Aleister Crowley. In fact, the 19th degree of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry compels Masons to protect a “Brother when in danger”.
A similar phrase is found in a Latin translation of Asaph in Psalm 73:15, “Sicut supra”, which was used in a hymnal from Augsburg in 1535. It appears that the phrase is found in many magical grimoires and other works. In modern times it has been popularized by its use in various books on magic and the occult, especially those of ceremonial magician Aleister Crowley.
The phrase “as above, so below” is used in many metaphysical and spiritual teachings. The exact meaning of the saying varies depending on the source it’s attributed to.
A common definition of this phrase is that everything one experiences correspond to their internal state; what one sees around them (because they are aware of it) is a reflection of what one feels inside. Another definition suggests that the microcosm (inner self or world) is a reflection of the macrocosm (outer world).
In spiritual teachings, the saying is interpreted as applying to spiritual matters, meaning that there’s a connection between inner and outer worlds and that the human body serves as a conduit between both.
Some spiritual texts suggest that if we don’t like what we see in our outside world, we should first change our internal world; once we’ve made peace with ourselves, peace will manifest itself on the outside as well. A more spiritual definition of this phrase is as follows: to have a good understanding of the world, one should understand both the internal and external.
In this context, it’s said that all things in the sky (sun, moon, stars) are present on earth as well; we just don’t see them because they’re covered by clouds or other obstacles.
Similarly, all earthly things are said to exist in the sky as well. The exact interpretation depends on the context; some sources say that each planet has its counterpart “in heaven”, while others suggest that all living things (plants, animals) on earth correspond with something up there. It’s also suggested that minerals correspond with planets and other astral bodies.
According to the Golden Dawn, when looking at a symbol, one should look at its opposite as well; for example, when studying astrology, one should study alchemy too. The rationale is that by understanding what something is made of (and how it’s made), the true nature of the thing becomes more obvious.