The Hermetica are a body of theological-philosophical texts written in late antiquity, but long believed to be much older. Their supposed author, Hermes Trismegistus, was thought to be a contemporary of Moses, and the Hermetic philosophy was regarded as an ancient theology, parallel to the received wisdom of the Bible.
Excerpt from Corpus Hermeticum:
The First Book.
O my Son, write this first Book, both for Humanity’s sake, and for Piety towards God.
For there can be no Religion more true or just, than to know the things that are; and to acknowledge thanks
for all things, to him that made them, which thing I shall not cease continually to do.
What then should a man do, O Father, to lead his life well, seeing there is nothing here true ?
Be Pious and Religious, O my Son, for he that doth so, is the best and highest Philosopher; and with− out
Philosophy, it is impossible ever to attain to the height and exactness of Piety or Religion.
But he that shall learn and study the things that are, and how they are ordered and governed, and by whom and for what cause, or to what end, will acknowledge thanks to the Workman as to a good Father, an
excellent Nurse and a faithful Steward, and he that gives thanks shall be Pious or Religious, and he that is
Religious shall know both where the truth is, and what it is, and learning that, he will be yet more and more Religious […]