In this second edition the title has been adapted and applied terms like 'deduction' and 'induction' have been added to replace former less suitable terms.
In many of the contemplations the words 'etymology' and 'etymosophy' are used. In some only the first is used, in others only the latter, and sometimes both words occur in the same contemplation. This mixed use may give rise to some confusion. Thus shall in this contemplation the difference between the two concepts of etymology and etymosophy be explicated.
In the English dictionary several meanings of 'etymology' are given. It is considered as "[t]he process of tracing out and describing the elements of a word with their modifications of form and sense", "[a]n instance of this process; an account of the formation and radical signification of a word", "[t]he facts relating to the formation or derivation (of a word)", "[t]hat branch of linguistic science which is concerned with determining the origin of words" and "[t]hat part of grammar which treats of individual words, the parts of speech separately, their formation and inflexions".1 In a synthesis of these meanings etymology can then be understood as the linguistic and grammatical science or process of determining, tracing out and describing the origin, modifications of form, derivations, radical sense and inflexions of individual words and their elements as parts of speech. Basically it can be said that in an etymology words are through resemblances of phonetics and semantics traced back to words from which they originated.
The word 'etymology' has on itself a very interesting etymology. Through the Latin 'etymologia' it can be traced back to the Greek 'ẻtumología', whereby both words carry similar meanings.2, 3, 4 This latter Greek word consists of the words 'ếtumon' and 'lógos'.5 Now 'ếtumon' regards on the one hand the single building element from which other words are composed (also to be understood as a root word) but on the other hand is 'ếtumon' also the noun which is derived from 'ếtumos', meaning 'true'.7 So it can be said that in ancient Greece one thought that in the root elements of words the truth about words could be found.
Now the other word of which the Greek 'ẻtumología' consists regards 'lógos'. This word refers basically to an expression or explication such as a word.8 Thus do established etymologists give 'ẻtumología' the meaning of 'the truth about words' or 'the true meaning of words'.9
Above the Greek 'lógos' was indicated as the root of the English root word (or etymon) 'logy' in 'etymology'. 'Lógos' is however not only the etymological root of 'logy' as an etymon but also of 'logy' as a postfix. For this postfix is used in many words that refer to a specific field of science.10 'Anthropology' and 'theology' are two of such words. A word like 'theology' however should then not be understood in line with the established conception of 'etymology' as 'the godliness of words' but more as 'the explication about God'. Actually this English use of 'logy' has driven away the original Greek meaning of 'the truth about words' (whereby truth is the referent of 'etymo' and words are the referents of 'logy') to make place for the meaning of 'the explication of words' (whereby words are the referents of 'etymo' and explications are the referents of 'logy').
Let us tabulate the above for clarity in figure 1.
|Truth / root word
|Explication / word
|The truth about words
|Logy (as postfix)
|The explication of (root) words
The above figure makes clear how in Greek 'ếtumon' with its semantics of 'truth' and 'lógos' with its semantics of 'word' constitute 'ẻtumología' with its semantics of 'the truth about words'. And we also see how in English 'etymo(n)' with its semantics of 'root words' and 'logy' with its semantics of 'explication' constitute 'etymology' with its semantics of 'the explication of words'. This is in line with other sciences such as theology. This latter science however was already mentioned in ancient Greek as 'theología'.11 And also did the ancient Greeks know other sciences that were named with the postfix of 'logía'. So although the semantics of 'ẻtumología' are established as 'the truth about words' is it very considerable that instead the meaning of 'the explication of words' must be attached to this word. Or perhaps the word could be understood in an ambiguous way. In that case the above table should be completed as below (at the Greek semantics of 'ẻtumología').
|Truth / root word
|Explication / word
|The truth about words / The explication of (root) words
|Logy (as postfix)
|The explication of (root) words
Above the Greek word 'lógos' was mentioned to carry the meanings of 'explication' and 'word'. This is correct but the meanings of 'lógos' go much further and deeper. It can be said that 'lógos' became to mean 'word' because it was more primarily considered as the structure underlying words, sentences and speech. Much more than words is lógos the logical structure along which expressions are build. Lógos as such is logic. It is therefore that 'lógos' is also the root of the English word 'logic'.12 In Latin 'lógos' was also translated with 'ratiō',13 (being the root of the English 'rationality').14 So the relation between ratio and logic is grounded in the Greek word 'lógos' lying at the base of both 'ratio' and 'logic'.
Now it was an ancient Greek thought that this lógos was not just the underlying structure of human expressions but also of the visible world. The essence of things was by lógos brought into manifestation.15 Essence in ancient Greece is referred to with terms like 'eĩdos,16 'idéas'17 and 'noús',18 whereby the latter is also used to refer to the universal and human intellect.19, 20 For manifestation the word 'phúsis' was often used.21 So according to ancient Greek thought brings logic as lógos the intellect or essence as noús or idéa into manifestation as phúsis. Now in the microcosm of the ageless wisdom does the noús correspond to the soul principle.22 To be more precise; the soul consists of three principles (spiritual will, intuition and higher or abstract mind)23 and of these does noús correspond with the lowest, being the higher mind.24 Lógos then is in the ageless wisdom an aspect of the threefold personality25 that brings the soul into physical manifestation. And this is basically what the lower or concrete mind does (or should do). The correspondence fits well. The abstract mind of noús is by the concrete mind or ratio of lógos being brought into the physical manifestation of phúsis. It is this movement towards expression that has given lógos also the meaning of 'word', although it more primarily must be understood as the movement towards expression and not expression itself.26 Lógos, so we shall emphasize here, is the ratio and the logic which underlies and structures expressions of a concealed idea. And in this line may etymology also be understood as 'the rationality of (root) words'.
Up till now we have been contemplating etymology. And this along etymological lines which expanded into some metaphysical considerations. In previous contemplations however was not only the word 'etymology' used but also 'etymosophy'. So where does etymosophy differ from etymology? Firstly it should be mentioned that 'etymosophy' is a neologism. It is a new word and as such it does not yet occur in the English dictionary. So it is not possible to rely on existing definitions where the word 'etymosophy' is concerned. It is possible however to analyse the word in its parts.
Now it is evident that 'etymosophy' consists of 'etymo' and 'sophy', like 'etymology' was found to consist of 'etymo' and 'logy'. This word 'etymology' was traced back to its Greek root 'ẻtumología', consisting of the two words 'ếtumon' and 'lógos'. Now this word 'ếtumon', of which 'etymo(n)' in 'etymology' and 'etymosophy' is its English sprout, was found to mean 'true' or 'root word'. When etymology is considered as the truth about words it stands for 'true' and when considered as the explication of (root) words it stands for 'root word'. 'Etymosophy' then must be regarded as either (or both) the truth of sophy (or sophies) or the sophy of (root) words.
So what does the English word 'sophy' mean? The word is (or was) in use in the English language in two senses. When written with a capital does 'Sophy' refer to a Persian ruler or Shah.27 In this case the word is etymologically rooted in the Persian word 'çafī'. When written without a capital may 'sophy' refer to a wise and learned sage.28 In this case the word is related to the meaning of 'wisdom' and 'knowledge', and more contemporary it may also refer to a science or department of study.29 In the latter cases are the etymological roots through the Latin 'sophia', meaning 'wisdom',30 found in the Greek word 'sophía'. This Greek word has again meanings pertaining to wisdom.31 The word 'etymosophy' then can basically be understood as 'the truth about wisdom' or, as we in line with the earlier proposed meaning of 'etymology' shall propose, 'the wisdom of (root) words'.
In an earlier paragraph was lógos considered in its place between noús and phúsis whereby noús corresponds to the higher or abstract mind of the ageless wisdom and lógos with the lower or concrete mind. So where in this picture does sophía fit in? Now sophía regards wisdom, as we have seen. And wisdom in the ageless wisdom is as a part of the love-wisdom aspect given a place on the level of the soul, just above the higher mind. Love-wisdom regards buddhi or intuition.32 Sophía as intuition then should be placed just above noús as the higher mind, which is again placed just above lógos as the lower mind. Intuition is (or should be) passed over through the abstract mind to the concrete mind which brings it into expression through the physical body (as speech or deeds). Etymosophy may in this line also be understood as 'the intuition of (root) words'.
In previous paragraphs were lógos and sophía considered. About lógos it was mentioned that although it should be considered primarily as the (lower mental) movement towards expression it is often also thought of as a word or a verbal expression. This is probably so due to of the move from Platonic thought to Aristotelian thought. In Plato's philosophy of characteristics it was thought that the characteristics of things exist independently from those things.33 A concrete beautiful thing for instance is beautiful because it participates in the abstract thought of beauty.34 Plato's successor Aristotle however rid himself and many others from Plato's idea of the independent abstract characteristics and held that these exist only by the grace of multiple concrete things having similar characteristics.35, 36 Such a move means for the word 'lógos' that its meaning of explicator of noús is terminated and its meaning of concrete word is established.37 Here we are not attesting that Plato himself established 'lógos' in its meaning of 'explicator of noús' and Aristotle established it in its meaning of 'concrete word', however we do consider that Platonic and Aristotelian thoughts in general did so.
In the previous paragraph it was brought to the fore how the meaning of 'lógos' moved from its primal Platonic meaning of 'explicator of noús' to its secondary Aristotelian meaning of 'concrete word'. Christian Platonic Gnostics however would again elevate its meaning, even to a higher level than it ever was assigned to under Greek Platonism. For in The New Testament, which was originally written in Greek,38 the word 'lógos' (in English translated with 'word') is used to refer to Jesus Christ.39 It is Saint John who teaches for instance that lógos was in the beginning, that it was with God and that it was God,40 and also that the lógos was made flesh and dwelt among us.41
Now interestingly does in Gnosticism Sophía (often personified and thus written with a capital) too play an important role. For in one sense she is considered as the bride of Christ.42 As such does sophía as Sophía correspond to the Holy Ghost of the Trinity, just as lógos as the Christ corresponds to the Son of the Trinity.43 Now in the ageless wisdom the male and female duality is considered as a reflection of the great duality of spirit and matter.44 To be more precise it can be said that the male pole stands to the female pole as any higher principle stands to any lower principle. So in Gnostic Christian thought stands lógos higher than sophía. And with lógos identified with Christ, which regards the intuition,45 must Sophía in Gnosticism be identified with the underlying principle of abstract mind.
Above were the conceptions of Platonism, Aristotelianism and Gnosticism placed within the divisions of the ageless wisdom. The latter however has its own use of the aforementioned terms. Let us consider the use of the term 'Christ' first. This term may refer both to a principle and to a function within the spiritual Hierarchy.46 Now the Christ as a principle refers to the threefold soul principle in general47 and in particular to the soul principle of intuition or buddhi.48 This intuition is considered as a twofold, namely that of love and of wisdom, taken together as love-wisdom.49 And in the spiritual Hierarchy it is the Buddha that in His function embodies the energy of wisdom and the Christ that in His function embodies the energy of love.50 From the above it can be deduced that in the Secret Wisdom Teaching the Christ in His function embodies the energy of lógos and the Buddha that of sophía. It does not become fully clear which of the two should be placed higher. The age of wisdom of the Buddha prepared the coming of the age of love of the Christ,51 which on the arc of evolution52 means that the Christ is to placed higher than the Buddha. At the same time however is the Buddha said to function as an intermediary between Shamballa (corresponding to the above the intuition placed spiritual will)53, 54 and the Hierarchy,55 of which Christ is the head.56 But then elsewhere both are placed again at the same level as intermediary between Shamballa and the Hierarchy.57 And where on one place wisdom is mentioned to express itself through love58 there is on another place love mentioned to express itself through wisdom.59 Thus it remains obscure whether in the ageless wisdom wisdom should be placed above love, love above wisdom, or both on the same level. We shall here opt for the latter option.
Here it must be mentioned that lógos as love and sophía as wisdom in the ageless wisdom are induced and not as such explicated in the ageless wisdom itself. The word 'Logos' (with a capital) is used there however to indicate the entity indwelling a solar system (solar Logos) or a planetary system (planetary Logos), similar to a human entity indwelling a human body.60 Now planetary Logoi are found on the monadic plane (being the second cosmic physical plane) and solar Logoi on the logoic plane (being the first cosmic physical plane).61 And since a solar causal body is found on the cosmic mental plane and a human causal body on the mental plane62 it might be induced according to the Law of Analogy63 that according to the ageless wisdom a human logos must be sought out on the first (or perhaps second) physical plane64 (being that of the first or second ether).65 Now because this latter consideration on lógos is more explicit in the ageless wisdom than the earlier consideration (where lógos was induced to regard love) we shall take lógos to be placed on the level of the first or second ether of the physical plane.
The term 'sophía' (or perhaps 'Sophia') is not found in the special terminology of the Secret Wisdom Teaching. Only indications are given of how its use by Gnostics and Greeks should be understood. But on top of our own explanations of how the terms 'lógos' and 'sophía' are used with the Gnostics and Greeks and on top of our inducements of how they are used in the ageless wisdom we shall not thematize how the ageless wisdom indicates the use of these terms with the Gnostics and Greeks. This is not needed here.
Let us tabulate our findings in a short overview in figure 3.
|1st or 2nd Ether of the physical body
In figure 3 we see that lógos is placed on the level of the concrete mind by Platonism, on the level of the physical body by Aristotelianism and the ageless wisdom and on the level of the intuition by Gnosticism. Sophía is placed on the level of the intuition by Platonism and the ageless wisdom and on the level of the abstract mind by Gnosticism. Now with the personality consisting of concrete mind, emotion and physicality and the soul consisting of spiritual will, intuition and abstract mind66 it can be said that in the aforementioned conceptions lógos occurs three times on the personality level and one time on the soul level, and also that sophía occurs three times on the soul level.
Above 'lógos' and 'sophía' were thematized as they are used in Platonism, Aristotelianism, Gnosticism and the ageless wisdom. And the question may rise what our findings there can tell us about etymology and etymosophy. Let us to answer this question first consider lógos. It was found that in the aforementioned concepts lógos is one time placed on the soul level of the intuition, one time on the personality level of the concrete mind, and twice on the personality level of one of the physical sub planes. This considered it is interesting to see that lógos stretches itself out over the domain of language and that it corresponds to three of the main elements of language. On the soul level is the world of meaning found67 so there we see lógos corresponding to the semantics of language. On the level of the concrete mind logic is found, so there does lógos correspond to the syntax of language. And on the physical level then lógos corresponds to the phonetics of language. Lógos thus understood regards the whole of linguistic expressions.
This is different with sophía. Sophía is by the aforementioned concepts only placed on the soul level of the abstract mind and the soul level of the intuition. These placements are of import when we consider their relation to the world of symbol, that of meaning and that of significance. From statements made in the ageless wisdom it can be deduced that the world of symbol corresponds to the world of the threefold personality, that the world of meaning corresponds to the understanding of the abstract mind plus the intent of the intuition and that thus the world of significance, belonging to the spiritual triad or soul,68 corresponds to the spiritual will.69 So we get an overview as in figure 4.
|Lógos / Sophía
|World of significance
|World of meaning
|World of symbol
What then can be read from this figure 4 regarding sophía and lógos? We see that sophía covers the whole world of meaning. Touching the world of significance it can be deduced that sophía brings significance into meaning. Lógos we see covering the lowest and the highest level of the world of symbol and also the lowest level of the world of meaning, and from this it can be deduced that lógos brings meaning into concrete manifestation. So to repeat shortly; sophía brings significance into meaning and lógos brings meaning into manifestation.
What does the above then mean for etymology and etymosophy? Etymology as a field of research, containing in its name etymologically the word 'lógos', can according to all of the above be understood and defined as 'the research of the meanings (semantics), logics (syntaxes) and expressions (phonetics) of words (etymons)'. And etymosophy then can be understood and defined as 'the research of the significances and meanings of words'.
Here it can be noticed that etymology and etymosophy have common and different fields of research. Both research the meanings or semantics of words, but where etymology researches the underlying syntaxes and phonetics there researches or contemplates etymosophy the above lying significances. Now in the present scientific time period70 do the empiric oriented sciences acknowledge etymology with its physical and logical based research but not etymosophy with its metaphysical and wise based contemplation. In other words does etymology (as a member of the established empiric sciences) not acknowledge or accept etymosophy. The latter however does accept the first. The physical based sciences of contemporary days deny metaphysical based sciences, but the metaphysical based sciences of the coming new age include physical based sciences.71 This means that etymology will not accept etymosophical conclusions about the meanings of words that are based upon their significances but that etymosophy may accept etymological conclusions about the meanings of words that are based upon their logics and expressions. And this is why in the contemplations of the author both words 'etymology' and 'etymosophy' are used. Mostly the significances of words are sought out, however in this often etymology is applied. Contemplations such as for instance 'An Elucidated Etymology of 'Contemplation''72 and 'An Etymological Anthropology'73 may carry a form of the word 'etymology' in their title but they are actually etymosophies making use of etymology to come to the significance of the regarded word or concept under contemplation.
In etymosophy the significance of a word is contemplated. Now in sciences of language all researchers are familiar with terms like 'phonetics', 'syntaxes' and 'semantics'. But what does the term 'significance' mean in relation to words? Generally it can be said that something which is significant serves a purpose. This seems to be acknowledged in the ageless wisdom. There not only the world of significance is related to atma or the spiritual will (as was mentioned before), but also to service (with its counterpart of sacrifice) and purpose.74, 75 So what has significance serves a purpose. Now what has significance signifies. And it can be said that what it signifies regards the purpose which it serves. Words do not only have phonetics, syntaxes, semantics and significances but also purposes. They rise up from the world of symbol through the world of meaning and the world of significance into a world of purpose.76 Now it can be said that the purpose of all words is to be expressed at the right time and place.77 As such does every word have the same purpose which in its working out however is every time different. Now when a word is rightly expressed it carries a significance. It is important here to see that the purpose and the significance of a word is not induced from below by artificially blown up semantics, cunningly applied syntaxes or exaggerated expressed phonetics. But in the contrary are the semantics of a word enhanced, its syntaxes harmoniously constructed and its phonetics powerfully expressed by the significance that a word gained by being brought forth at the right time and place. Now what etymosophy mainly does is contemplating from the significance of words onwards by which they can be more purposely expressed.
Let us give an example of what has been explicated in the previous paragraph. The contemplation 'An Elucidated Etymology of 'Contemplation'' is intended to be besides an etymology also an etymosophy. First the abstract significance of the word 'contemplation' is preconceived. This conception is brought down to an abstract meaning. Holding that meaning at the background then etymology is used to work from the phonetics of 'contemplation' towards an induction of the until then deduced preconceived meaning. This is done first by tracing the phonetics of 'contemplation' back to the Latin root words 'con' and 'templum'. Then the meanings of those originals are elaborated and brought back to the word of departure, being 'contemplation' in this case. Thus we come from the established meaning of "[t]he action of beholding"79 to the enriched and more significant meaning of 'the joint action of man and his inner gods whereby the former beholds how the latter move the elements that have been brought into the temple of his heart'.80 Etymology would only follow the phonetics of 'contemplation' to 'con' and 'templum' and point the established and concrete meanings of 'contemplation' out in the meanings of the former. This is obviously different from etymosophy which starts from a preconceived abstract meaning by which etymology can be used and directed for its explication.
All of the above can be given an overview as in figure 5.
Above we see the difference between etymosophy and etymology depicted in a strict sense. Etymosophy does nothing more than deduce semantics of words from their significances. And etymology induces phonetics of words to their syntaxes and these to their semantics. In a less strict sense we see however how the deduced semantics work through downwards to deduced syntaxes and phonetics by which the whole process of etymology is led by etymosophy. And in this less strict sense the whole of this process can be considered as etymosophy. We see this symbolized in figure 6 where etymology is contained in etymosophy.
For the sake of clarity we shall in this contemplation hold on to the strict sense of etymosophy.
Above we have considered etymology and etymosophy. This we have partly done by disconnecting the postfixes 'logy' and 'sophy' and contemplating their origins, usages and meanings. These postfixes however do not only occur in the words 'etymology' and 'etymosophy'. Especially 'logy' is used a lot to indicate one or other of the sciences.81 Here we may think of words such as for instance 'anthropology', 'theology', 'astrology', and 'psychology'. According to our found definitions of etymology may anthropology then for instance be understood as the explication of man (with 'anthropo' representing the Greek word for 'man'),82 the rationality of man or as the research of the meanings, logics and expressions of man.
Now the postfix 'sophy' is according to the dictionary also used to indicate one or other of the sciences.83 These sciences are usually however not established and academic acknowledged sciences of contemporary materialistic oriented times. They are more targeting to be sciences of the new spiritually oriented age.84 Here we may think in line of our examples of the anthroposophy of Rudolf Steiner85 and the theosophy of Helena Petrovna Blavatsky.86 And in line with our found definitions of etymosophy may anthroposophy then for instance be understood as the wisdom of man, the intuition of man or as the contemplation of the meanings and significances of man. So we see that the materialistic sciences of contemporary times of anthropology and theology find their counterpart in the spiritualistic sciences of the new age of anthroposophy and theosophy. And we may expect this to expand. The use of the word 'etymosophy' in our contemplations is only a fragment of that expected expansion. We may for instance expect the rise of astrosophy and psychosophy. It is not certain that these sciences of the new age will carry these names, but given our contemplation so far it is certainly not unlikely either.
Among the pairs of logies and sophies there is also an exceptional pair, namely that of philology and philosophy. Because this pair needs special attention it shall not be touched upon here and be left to be contemplated in a separate contemplation.
In different contemplations are the words 'etymology' and 'etymosophy' used. To clarify a possible confusion the present contemplation was undertaken. First etymology was contemplated, and this itself along etymological lines. It was found that the word 'etymology' stems from the Greek 'ẻtumología' and that like the latter consists of the Greek 'ếtumon' and 'lógos' the former consists of 'etymo(n)' and 'logy'. Against established etymology it was proposed to define etymology not as 'the truth about (root) words' but as 'the explication of (root) words'. In the following paragraph 'lógos' was contemplated as the root of 'logic', defining the former as 'the ratio and the logic which underlies and structures expressions to a concealed idea'. Thus was etymology redefined as 'the rationality of (root) words'. Then our attention was shifted towards etymosophy. With 'sophy' being rooted in the Greek 'sophía' meaning 'wisdom' was etymosophy defined as 'the wisdom of (root) words'. And where the postfix 'logy' was related to the ratio there was the postfix 'sophy' related to the intuition. This made etymosophy also understandable as 'the intuition of (root) words'. The original Greek 'lógos' and 'sophía' were then considered in the places they are given in Platonism, Aristotelianism, Gnosticism and the ageless wisdom. It was found that in Platonism lógos relates to the concrete mind and sophía to the intuition, that in Aristotelianism lógos has to do with the physical body, that in Gnosticism lógos relates to the intuition and sophía to the abstract mind and that in the ageless wisdom lógos relates to the first or second ether of the physical body and sophía to the intuition. From there further definitions were given. Etymology was further defined as 'the research of the meanings (semantics), logics (syntaxes) and expressions (phonetics) of words (etymons)' and etymosophy as 'the contemplation of the significances and meanings of words'. This significance of words was further found to be rooted in the purpose of words. Then it was elucidated that etymosophy, working from its top to its bottom, may steer etymology, working from its bottom to its top, but the latter not the former. Thus a strict sense and a loose sense of etymosophy were mentioned. Etymosophy in its strict sense is kept separate from etymology but in its loose sense does etymosophy contain etymology. Finally other logies and sophies were considered and it was concluded that logies regard the materialistic oriented sciences of the contemporary age and that sophies regard the spiritualistic oriented sciences of the new age. Thus the following overview can be given of the difference between etymology and etymosophy.
|Phonetics / syntaxes / semantics
|Significances / semantics
On base of figure 7 we then can conclude with the following, for the present contemplation, encompassing definitions: 'Etymology is the contemporary materialistic oriented logical and rational research of the induced phonetics, syntaxes and semantics of words, and 'etymosophy is the new spiritualistic oriented wise and intuitive contemplation of the deduced significances and semantics of words.
|1. Spiritual Will
|Buddhi, Love-wisdom, the Christ principle.
|3. Higher or abstract Mind
|"1. The personal physical man
|2. The ego or Christ
|3. The monad
|life or power."
|The Buddha *
|* The Christ