When we speak of regeneration it’s nearly always about the physical transformation of the built environment, adding transport and communication links, boosting the economy, encouraging yet more technological innovation or improving public services It’s much rarer to speak about the inner regeneration of people themselves – especially in a spiritual sense. And this is why we’ve decided to explore this important question in this issue of Hermes. We’ve attempted a broad approach to this.
Now more than ever it’s crucial to understand that humans are primarily spiritual beings inhabiting physical bodies not flesh and blood entities who happen to have a spirit. The deep imperative of spiritual evolution is the very reason we’re all here now in physical bodies. But many people neither understand nor accept this. Our many attempts to improve our physical bodies, material conditions and environment dwarf our efforts to explore and enhance our spiritual identities.
At the very core of all spiritual regeneration are notions of responsibility, conscience and above all a morality which rises above the separative values of crass greed and narrow self-interest. These days morality is often regarded as one of those quaint and straightlaced values reminiscent of the nineteenth century but entirely obsolescent in our modern era. And yet our deeply unethical and inequitable modern world urgently requires a much more acute individual and collective sense of responsibility. The absence of a coherent moral code is constantly displayed in all its unalloyed horror all around us. We’ve never needed morality as we do right now.
Spiritual progress also requires truth. It means understanding that there are timeless cosmic verities which usually transcend the transient, fluid and often flawed notions of truth in any given age. This Ageless Wisdom is incorruptible and refuses to be flayed by fleeting social, political or religious bigotries. It survives – often dormant or disfigured – but ultimately its core messages are resuscitated and resurrected.
We need truth to understand ourselves and the world. But when this planet is fogged by a choking miasma of lies, uncertainties, deception, propaganda and misinformation the truth is becoming an increasingly rare commodity. No one is certain who or what to believe or trust any more. This itself is a stark illustration of how little we really understand our eternal natures. And re-establishing truth and honesty is the very bedrock of any human uplift.
Among the innovations in this issue is the introduction of a humour section. We feel that humour is one of the vital antidotes to the despair and negativities being churned out as we negotiate the unremitting turmoil of a decaying, chaotic and imprisoned world.
Humour can often be a strange and elusive concept for some so-called ‘spiritual’ people. But as always during times of conflict, the ability to laugh at ourselves and each other is both an essential resource and a weapon in the spiritual war in which we’re all engaged. Had God not wanted us to laugh he wouldn’t have given us the capacity to crack jokes.
We live in a time when nonsensical ‘woke’ attitudes, cancel culture, mass censorship and a New Puritanism are in ascendency. The Thought Police are on permanent over-time patrolling our minds to ensure we think the ‘correct’ thoughts and utter only words deemed appropriate. We strongly believe that humour can help to counteract some of these toxic trends and help to readjust the rigid and fundamentalist mind-sets.
Here at Hermes we enshrine freedom of thought, expression and action as essential tools for spiritual growth. Humour lies at the very heart of this. Why? Because humour is energising and liberating. Like prana, it’s a vital life-source. Down the long corridors of history, humour has been proved as a well-tried and tested survival tool. But we need more than survival. We need to regenerate the human spirit itself and this means firstly, recognising it and secondly, setting it free.