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The Legacy of Thoth in the West (part 3)

"...in the 3rd century AD, the Greeks adopted Thoth, giving him the name of Hermes, and describing him as 'Trismegistus' - Thrice-greatest.
 
As Thoth was the teacher of speech and writing, it was natural that the Greeks made him the father of Homer, their greatest poet.  Heliodorus indicated that Homer was the son of Hermes and an Egyptian priest's daughter, and little by little was forged the concept which stated that Egypt was the source of wisdom and knowledge.
 
With the conquest of Egypt by Alexander the Great in 333 BC, the assimilation of Egypt-
ian culture by the Greek world was accelerated.  The focus of this activity occured in the city of Alexandria, founded in 331 BC...Alexandria was also the crucible where Greco-Egyptian alchemy flourished.
 
The city gave birth to a new science in the form of alchemy, a continuation of ancient
Egyptian practices...Its originality consisted of offering a concrete and universal
discipline free from the grasp of religion.  Hermes Trismegistus, represented by Alexandrian alchemists as being the founder of this art, became the new transmitter of the ancient tradition...Three centuries before the Christian era, texts which are now called the "Hermetica' - because their authorship is attributed to Hermes, began to take shape.  Among its variously attributed 42, or 20,000, or 36,525 books is the 'Asclepius', an important text as it describes the religion of the Egyptians and the magical rites they practiced for attracting cosmic powers meant to animate the statues of the gods.  Finally, the fragments of 'Stobaeus' ...are composed of 39 texts and consist of dialogues between Isis and Horus regarding the creation of the world and the origin of souls...
 
In 30 BC, Alexandria became the capital of the Roman province of Egypt.  The Romans assimilated the Greco-Egyptian Hermes with Mercury, their god of commerce and travelers.  Mercury-Hermes was the messenger of the gods, the conductor or guide of souls.  Rome rapidly adopted Egypt and its cults."
 
 
"Rosicrucian History and Mysteries"  Christian Rebisse

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