"More than a school of thought, alchemy is a gnosis, a "way" of knowing. It is a deliberate attempt to grasp immortality in which the process is paramount. We all embody the archetypal journey of life, consciously or unconsciously. We are born in our essential nature but it quickly becomes covered with a hard-shelled core … Continue reading Working through Depression with Alchemy
"We are bees of the invisible. We wildly collect the honey of the invisible, to store it in the great golden hives of the invisible." Rilke often refers to the invisible, especially in his Duino Elegies, which he wrote during a particularly mystical period of his life. In a letter to his Polish translator Witold … Continue reading We are bees of the invisible… Rilke from a letter to Halewicz
"The god Horus is a falcon (the word for which in hieroglyphs is qhr, the falcon’s cry). In the third surviving column of text, remarkably, the falcon is marked with a triangle, the hieroglyphic designation for the star Sirius. As if it were a mathematical proof unfolding before my eyes, I saw that if the … Continue reading The Turning Sky | Lapham’s Quarterly
I feel that the more perfect the art the most simple it is; so the authors [of alchemy] most unanimously agree that the ‘primordial material’ [prima materia] of the [philosopher’s] stone is something vile [base] and not bought with money, but easy to find. Moreover, the manner of work must imitate nature, which in order … Continue reading Conciatore: Primordial Matter
The contents of Box 14 from the Manly Palmer Hall Collection of Alchemical Manuscripts, a huge collection of esoteric works amassed by Manly Palmer Hall, a Canadian-born author and mystic, perhaps most famous for his The Secret Teachings of All Ages (1928). Most of the material in the collection was acquired from Sotheby’s auctioneers on … Continue reading The Vessels of Hermes – an Alchemical Album (ca.1700)
I'm re-posting this old nugget as it is directly related to the 2 most recent that I have posted; Know Thyself: self-observation for the purpose of understanding ourselves "both as Individuals and Part of the Whole." This was Tavaglione's introduction to his tarot deck. In creating the Stairs of Gold Tarot, he was inspired by … Continue reading Those heights are not conceivable or comprehensible by minds not completely free
I can’t recommend this post highly enough.. wonderful, wonderful x
White and silver share a lot of the same qualities but Hillman breaks up the next chapter into two parts starting with silver; all things lunar and reflective. Silver allows reflection and is the means by which we mediate between psyche and the physical. The risk here is one of identifying with depersonalized images, becoming cold and detached from human life rather than using images as a bridge beween the psychic and physical worlds.
“The cool, silver psyche, though seemingly “unrelated,” can establish relations between the most burning issues and hold them together, yet without fusing them into a false compromise (amalgam). It mediates, attaching molten factions by means of its own detachment.”
Hillman begins the chapter with a very startling idea that may be difficult for many moderns to hear. Particularly those who prefer to stave off pathological states by avoiding the black and blue stages whenever and however possible, but without…
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When you make the two into one, and when you make the inner like the outer and the outer like the inner, and the upper like the lower, and when you make male and female into a single one, so that the male will not be male nor the female be female, when you make … Continue reading Rosarium Philosophorum; when you make the two into one..
The Curious Case of Hermetic Graffiti in Valladolid Cathedral - Eric W. Vogt "Turning now to closely examine the frontispiece of Valladolid ms. 40/8 (Figure A), the investigator meets a wonderful confluence of related hermetic symbols. The total number of sides (twelve), the interpretation of the two symbols, the title and lyrics, form a complete … Continue reading The Curious Case of Hermetic Graffiti in Valladolid Cathedral
The Black Sophia, Aurora Consurgens The black figure represents the LUNAR Sophia, who has decended into matter and become caught in it. "The black depths have covered my face and the earth is corrupt and sullied in my works, and darkness has fallen upon it, as I am sunk in the mire of the depths, … Continue reading The Black Sophia and the Black Madonna