"As above, so below" - Do you believe in that saying? How much can you see that principle operating in the world, in your life? How far and deep does it go?

The origin of the phrase is largely attributed to Hermeticism, although I really do feel that all these proverbs point to the same principle:

  • As above, so below - As below, so above
  • As within, so without - As without, so within
  • As in heaven, so on earth - As on earth, so in heaven

We can see that principle practically applied every day when statistics or surveys are made and conclusions are drawn from a subset to the whole of a population. In a more metaphysical meaning, it points to the insight that our outer world is a mirror to our inner world, and is an important basis for all of the LOA speak.

For me, it is also and especially expressing Self-similarity.

Feigenbaum zoom Koch curve animation

This principle is widely, if not exclusively, found in nature. A whole fern looks like one of its leaves, a leaf looks like one of the even smaller parts it's made of and so on:

Fractal fern Fractal fern

A neural net looks like galaxy clusters:

Galaxy clusters

Also the internet looks like a galaxy or a neural map by the way:

All the internet

(Yeah I know, but sometimes pictures are worth thousands of words. :->)

I thus hereby boldly claim that Occam's Razor is a modern rendition of the same principle. Occam's Razor ultimately states that nature is based on simplicity. The simplest explanation or formula for a thing is most probably the right one. Self-similarity is simplicity and beauty in its purest form.

Nature builds structures that look complex but are based on very simple patterns. Nature is complex, not complicated. All of this hints to Fractal cosmology to explain the true nature of the universe in my opinion. I don't know why this is still considered as too fringy by conventional science. Auxiliary quantities like the Planck's constant that essentially try to pixellate the universe are artifical and hurt Occam's Razor I believe.

So do you see any limits? Are there any areas where the principles of Self-similarity and "As above, so below" would not be applicable?

asked 13 Mar '10, 16:29

herzmeister's gravatar image


edited 10 Jan '11, 20:59

Great question!

(13 Mar '10, 19:31) Asklepios

There is a short that shows I think a leaf and the camera it keeps going up high and higher until you see the full galaxy then back down to the leaf then down until you get to quantum level.

(09 Feb '11, 06:30) Wade Casaldi

@herzmeister - yes, great question :)

(29 Jan '12, 06:57) blubird two
showing 0 of 3 show 3 more comments

It is unequivocally true that self-similarity is a fundamental feature of nature. It is also true that the simplest solution tends to be the right one.

However, a little bit of complexity makes life interesting. My view of the world changed when I read a book by James Gleik called "Chaos: The Making of a New Science."

Chaos is order within randomness. It explains how very simple math equations can produce dramatically complex behavior:

alt text

It explains phenomena such as turbulence and vortices

alt text

It explains why systems such as the stock market and the weather are inherently unpredictable:

alt text

It even explains the red spot on Jupiter.

alt text

Chaos is directly involved in the beating of your heart and the workings of your brain.

alt text

And yes, there are many structures in the body (and nature) that are self-similar. The lungs and the circulatory system are two such examples.

As above, so below?

alt text


answered 13 Mar '10, 17:13

Vesuvius's gravatar image


The "little bit of complexity" you introduce is not necessarily an additional feature outside of the fractal structure. It's like imagining the leaves of the fern playfully interacting with each other in the wind. They are seemingly separate but belong to the same plant and share the same root. To extend that model, also all other plants share the same root, which is Earth itself. More figuratively, also the mentioned wind belongs to the same eco system which we may call Gaia for now. And about that nice ice berg: it's " as above, so below", and not "above == below". :->

(13 Mar '10, 21:10) herzmeister

Festive response! I want see your over 10,000 points. Congratulations! But I would like see also your face.

(13 Mar '10, 22:11) Gleam

@herzmeister der welten. For not"above == below" +1

(13 Mar '10, 22:32) Gleam

Is chaos the same as saying "we don't know so we'll just say stuff happens for no particular reason?" It is an easy way out and quite true that every time science says "this is the way things are" years later they revise that and say "no this is the way things are." Only to repeat years later with another "fact" of discovery again.

(14 Mar '10, 06:14) Wade Casaldi

10K congratulations!!!!!!!

(14 Mar '10, 06:23) Wade Casaldi

Can we considere that the self-similarity is the hidden substrate of causal intuition, the capacity of recognizing oneself into the own innerside?

(14 Mar '10, 11:41) Gleam

@Gleam, yes I guess I came to a quite similar conclusion in the comment to Wade Casaldi's answer. ;-)

(14 Mar '10, 19:52) herzmeister

In other words everything is chaotic and has no order or need of explaining because it is a random accident?

(09 Feb '11, 06:28) Wade Casaldi
showing 2 of 8 show 6 more comments

According to the Hermetic interpretation of this saying, Human equals Universe. What applies to Human, applies to the Universe. This is something really profound and worth to think about:

  • Human is born - Universe is born with Big Bang/God/both.

  • Human dies - Universe dies by shrinking into a ball of concentrated mass, like it was before Big Bang.

  • Another Big Bang occurrs - Human reincarnates into a new body.

  • Some believe that every human soul was once united into a one entity, one big soul, God. Then it split (this matches the Big Bang theory). So basically, take one Human in the Universe, and basing on his soul you could rebuild the "big soul" - take one cell of human body and basing on it you could rebuild the whole body.

This is called the Law of Analogy. As above, so below, said Hermes Trismegistos. Microcosmos is the reflection of Macrocosmos. Every day I think using this law, it brings me more and more revelations. In fact, it could be used to solve questions that seemed to be unsolved.

  • For example the theory of multiple universes. There are almost seven billions of people on our Earth. As above, so below?

answered 06 Jul '10, 17:12

Asklepios's gravatar image


well askelepios what you said about recreation of something with only apart was done in quantum holography. you can read it in this book:http://www.peterrussell.com/SG/index.php

(17 Dec '11, 02:15) white tiger

The one thing that seems to distort all things is time. Since time is an illusion created by man (or just the nature of the human mind to experience) then...

There is no beginning/there is no end.

The Beginning is the End.



answered 08 Jan '11, 17:19

jim%2010's gravatar image

jim 10

edited 08 Jan '11, 17:29

re: beginning or end, does not apply to infinity, nor anything absolute, for the rest of us we exist in hierarchies,
and yes, nature does duplicate

(09 Feb '11, 01:37) fred

Huh? Huh? And I'm confused

(09 Feb '11, 05:02) jim 10

I can see in my head an image that goes along the pattern you have made here, but it is a picture of people as the cells of the organs and people as the organs and "members" of the body of God, (but also everything else in the universe), because whatever extent It goes out into infinity is God, and God created man in His image, and the church is the bride of Christ and the people are the members of the body of Christ. Now, interpretation of this varies, but right here, right now, I see a picture of God like a man with members that are the shape of people made of cells the shape of people.

12/15/11 I saw an image on here that I cannot find now that gave me an aha moment. Here is my thought As above so below, as below so above, as within so without, as without so within. The atoms in our bodies are units that bear a resemblance to the solar system which also bears resemlance to the galaxy physically. We also have a magnetic field as does the earth. I found a good picture to demonstrate. On a larger scale, we are moving in the heart field of God which is the universe. That is why the universe seems to expand and/or contract. The yellow lines in the picture show the path that everything flows around and around in parallel realities. It doesn't show the possible figure 8 shape that we could do in this infinite 'loop'.

As we move through life making choices, some of those choices could have different futures than others. So when we make a decision that changes our future, our conscious awarness moves to different realities in which we exist. These realities already all exist since the begining of time. Because we have free will, we make conscious choices that allow us to choose which reality to place our conscious awareness. Since this is a magnetic field in that level or dimension of the universe, we choose which reality by changing our vibration.

Also, that would explain why we have major shifts every so many thousands of years, we move from the inner to outer and/or outer to inner. This is where it appears to expand and/or contract respectively.


answered 06 Mar '11, 15:20

Fairy%20Princess's gravatar image

Fairy Princess

edited 16 Dec '11, 14:26

To see a World in a Grain of Sand and a Heaven in a Wild Flower, Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand and Eternity in an hour.”

William Blake



answered 14 Mar '10, 06:20

Wade%20Casaldi's gravatar image

Wade Casaldi

edited 14 Mar '10, 08:56

Thank you the link. You offered the opportunity of this interesting site. The central figureof the Home page is a very inspiring: #1. Starting from curvatures, it can be identifyed the Yin: cohesion, cyclicity, individuality, concreteness - as matter with mass and repose inertia, past (maybe the "roots" of gravity); #2. Starting from angles, it can be identifyed the Yang: expansion, infinity, diversity, potentiality - moving matter-field manifested by interactions of waves, future (maybe the "roots" of multiverse). See the features as couples (eg. cohesion - expansion, and so on).

(14 Mar '10, 11:17) Gleam

Artists like William Blake always keep reminding me that inspiration -> intuition -> telepathy -> channeling -> omniscience are not different but rather an increasing intense of the same thing. Diving down the fractal tree or the veins of God towards the root, towards the source of everything.

(14 Mar '10, 19:50) herzmeister

Thank you yes I know it has been pointed out an atom is like a little solar system with planets orbiting the nucleus. That is something to think on.

(15 Mar '10, 09:42) Wade Casaldi
showing 2 of 3 show 1 more comments

We are calling all soul to gather around, as above, so below.

Nothing has changed since the beginning of time, as above, as below.

We are still in the same place, while faith lends a hand, as above, as below.

No one has called you to confirm the time, as above, as below.

We cherish this moment here and now, as below, as above.

Church Bells are ringing, people are singing, as above, as below.

The Angel stroke a cord on the Trumpet a great noise to be heard, as above, as below.

Heaven doors opened up, all souls gathered around to listen to the sound of great music, as below, as above.

Now is the time to pull the curtains down, down to the ground, as above, as below.

The end is not near, but not far apart, as above, as below.

Who will believe you, when no one will see you, as above, as below?

The corner stone of life, brilliant as the day light, as above, so below.

So take heed of this day, for there is no other day, it is today, as above, as below!

Hope you like my poem!


answered 09 Jan '11, 06:54

Inactive%20User's gravatar image

Inactive User ♦♦

I absolutely Love your poem!

(09 Jan '11, 07:41) daniele

@ Daniele, thank you! I love to write freely from the spirit.

(10 Jan '11, 04:07) Inactive User ♦♦

could go well into a song ;-)

(10 Jan '11, 21:01) herzmeister
showing 2 of 3 show 1 more comments

the complete saying is 'as above so below, as below so above'
a microcosm in the image of the macrocosm and the macrocosm in the image of the microcosm
one of reasons they (ancient wisdom) postulate all is inseparable


answered 09 Jan '11, 14:08

fred's gravatar image


As above so below, as below so above, as within so without, as without so within. When our emotions on the inside are negative, it shows on the outside as pain and ailments. A plant has roots below the dirt and leaves above. When the leaves turn brown, we water the root, not the leaves. When our pain and ailments show up, we need to treat the emotion inside, not the pain and ailments on the outside. If it is the stomache, on the inside, it is still the outside compared to the emotions on the inside.


answered 08 Feb '11, 14:27

Fairy%20Princess's gravatar image

Fairy Princess

I just had a 'revelation' on this. I read the other day on here, but I can't find it, about somebody feeling connected to another person and could they be part of the same group consciousness or something. I didn't know what they meant and went on about my day. Here is what occured to me.

God, the whole universe and everything in it is one whole unit. Then within that are groups, like organs and veins and other groups of cells that make up the body. Then there are individuals, like the cells. This works physically, but also spiritually. So when people feel 'connected' to another person, they are spiritually, or consciously a part of the same subsystem. So even though we are all connected and a part of the same whole, the same collective consciousness, we are also a part of a subgroup of consciousnes. Then, even within each of us, we have subgroups of personality and individual personality traits, past experiences, etc... Sometimes we meet other people from the same subgroup and sometimes we don't. They can be anywhere, anytime.


answered 28 Jun '11, 14:22

Fairy%20Princess's gravatar image

Fairy Princess

Hello herzmeister ... for me it goes as far as we can imagine it goes ... the "above" is limitless ... in theory we are limitless ... our limits are defined ... by our own limits .

have fun :)


answered 19 Dec '11, 18:13

blubird%20two's gravatar image

blubird two

edited 29 Jan '12, 07:02

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Asked: 13 Mar '10, 16:29

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Last updated: 29 Jan '12, 07:02

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