A Bardo Chat with: Hermes, Greek God of Travel, Thievery & Trickery

Author (A): Hello there, Hermes. Are you there?

Hermes (H): (shuffling noise) Ahoy there. Hermes is indeed here!

A: Great, I wasn’t sure if you’d turn up. I heard you are hard to get hold of.

H: (laughs) Ah, you’ve been listening to my detractors! I’m always around. You know, I don’t think there is ever a still moment.

A: Well, you are the messenger for the gods; and you are the god for travellers and for boundaries. I guess that means you are always on the move.

H: So true, so true. I’m always zipping here or there. There are really no boundaries where I go. And if there are, well, I just cross over all of them! I must confess I don’t get these boundaries everyone talks about. All worlds are mixed, whether under or over! (laughs).

A: Actually, that’s something I wanted to talk with you about. Our world here is full of boundaries, and many of them are invented. I refer to it as a simulation. Someone, or let’s say a nation, comes over and draws a boundary on a map. Then you have a new space. But it’s just a story that becomes his-story.

H: Yeah, sure, tell me about it. I see you people doing this all the time! We give you an open, clean slate and then you go drawing all over it, inventing your new rules for each game. You literally take out a pen and then it’s line here, line there. You keep changing the lines and then changing the rules. We all thought you were a schizophrenic lot until we came to realize it was an infantile learning process. You expel a lot of energy in these territorial games.

A: Do you think it is all a simulation?

H: What does that really mean? Everything is a simulation in one way or another. A simulation is just something that is a copy or reflection from the Real. So, sure it is. But that doesn’t take its validity away. I deal with what you call simulations all the time, and it’s real enough for many intelligences. It is what you have made from your slice of reality. You make the simulations within the bigger simulation. It’s a kind of trickery really, but it can also take you further away from where you need to be.

A: And I suppose trickery is your game, isn’t it? You are Hermes the Trickster, right?

H: (laughs) Sure thing! But all the trickery I do is for a purpose. And much of it has been to help you guys out. Did you know that? I’ve done lots of trickery but for your well-being. But now many of you are enjoying what you call sleight-of-hand for your own selfish ends. This is not real trickery, sorry to say. It is manipulation, and there are many of you who love this game.

A: And how do you see this type of trickery – this manipulation?

H: Like I said, it’s infantile from where we see things. It is more thievery than trickery. Everyone seems to be telling lies to each other, and you are building up a reality that steals the truth away. Every layer of lies that you put out takes your further from your Source. You are putting veils over yourselves and smiling while you do it. It’s not clever, whatever you may think.

A: No, not clever at all. Manipulations and lies are never clever. But there are those people who think it is. I think they feel it gives them power.

H: Power, perhaps. Yet power is only a game. And like I said, this game takes you further from yourselves. I think maybe you’re getting lost in your own game.

A: That’s interesting. Do you think we are also creating borders for ourselves?

H: Without a doubt! In the early days you had Heaven and Hell. Now you have everything in-between too. Borders are made real by your imaginings. Your world exists first in your head; then you make it into something real outside of your heads. Your borders are your power lines. There are no borders from where I’m seeing. I see a bunch of children playing in their schoolyard. You are sitting in your sandpits building fake castles and walls that are soon to fall. If you build with the wrong intention, then such things will never last. And what’s more, they will collapse on top of you. You’ll be a bunch of children submerged by your sand games!

A: What a thought. What an image!

H: Yes, and here’s another thought. I may come again to play some tricks on you! (laughs).

A: Please do. Some fun would be good. One last question – how can we know what is real and what is not?

H: You have to play the game without cheating! As a messenger of the gods I could give you some helping hints, but that would take away from your own achievement. Even the gods have to achieve, you know. You must find that distinction for yourselves. You must discover your own achievements; otherwise, why be human?

A: Yes, indeed – why be human. Thank you, Hermes, for the chat.

H: You’re most welcome. Remember to play the game well! Bye.

A: Goodbye.