Giordano Bruno and the Hermetic Tradition  

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"The basic difference between the attitude of the magician to the world and the attitude of the scientist to the world is that the former wants to draw the world into himself, whilst the scientist does just the opposite, he externalizes and impersonalizes the world ... Hence, may it not be supposed, when mechanics and mathematics took over from animism and magic, it was this internalisation, this intimate connection of the mens with the world, which had to be avoided at all costs. And, hence, it may be suggested, through the necessity for this strong reaction, the mistake arose of allowing the problem of mind to fall so completely out of step and so far behind the problem of matter in the external world and how it works ... This bad start of the problem of knowledge has never quite been made up."

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Giordano Bruno and the Hermetic Tradition is a 1964 non-fiction book by British historian Frances A. Yates. The book delves into the history of Hermeticism and its influence upon Renaissance philosophy and Giordano Bruno.

With the publication of Giordano Bruno and the Hermetic Tradition, Yates transformed Renaissance historiography. In it, she revealed the hermeticism with which the Renaissance was imbued, and the revived interest in mysticism, magic and Gnosticism of Late Antiquity that survived the Middle Ages. In the face of longstanding conventional interpretations, Yates suggested that the itinerant Catholic priest Giordano Bruno was burned at the stake in 1600 for espousing the Hermetic tradition rather than his affirmation of heliocentricity.

The book is cited by the bestselling British author Philip Pullman, as a central inspiration for his own writing.

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