bITS 'N CHUNKS
And now we get to the good stuff.
Hermeticism is very, very, very big. If you feel like you want to get into it or learn about its teachings, there are so many texts -- collectively referred to as Hermetica -- to go through, so many teachings, so many branches, just so much damn material!
Where do you start?
With the short version.
Most of the texts available on Hermeticism all do the same thing, and that is distill the original teachings of Hermes Trismegistus. Like so many figures in the esoteric path, Hermes Trismegistus likely isn't a real single person if he's a person at all; Hermeticism itself usually refers to him as a prophet and the messenger/son of a combination of old pagan gods. To that end, Hermeticism states that all religions are basically united and granted to mankind by a single god. So for example, pagan religions with multiple gods are a reflection of aspects of a single god.
You've probably heard this theory kicked around before, especially when discussing tension between Abrahamic religions ("they all worship the same god!"). This concept is actually very ancient and pre-dates the dates given for the general start of any Hermetic offshoots.
Hermeticism is fascinating but since it's intentionally very broad and encompasses quite a few spin offs it can be difficult to know where the hell to start with it. There's two texts to recommend: the Corpus Hermeticism which forms the base of Hermeticism, and the Kybalion which distills the principles of Hermetic thought.
I go to The Kybalion first because it's easily digestible, set up to be read more like Proverbs than Corpus Hermeticism, which is a much older text and greatly influenced by spiritual thought and the writings of Plato. What really separates them is brevity -- Corpus Hermeticism is exhaustive and The Kybalion is literally the Cliff Notes version.
The Kybalion feels very mystical as well. It is credited to "three initiates" who have never been satisfactorily identified so there is an air of mystery. The principles are fascinating and read as very contemporary, especially the gender shifting, almost nonbinary nature of the Principle of Gender. Most influential to me was the section Cause & Effect and Causation, which are as good a case against any evidence of Meritocracy as I've ever seen.
Ideally you would read both books side by side but I would reach for the Kybalion first to even figure out if you want to go any deeper into the gaping crater that is Hermetic thought.
Ia! If you've come this far, you're either looking for weird or you know you've found it...