Hermetism is often and wrongly confused with Gnosticism, which similarly originated in Egypt in roughly the same era. For present purposes, a few salient points of contrast will suffice. Like the God of Stoicism, the Hermetic God was omnipresent and omniscient through the material cosmos. In Gnosticism, by contrast, God was transcendent, and the … Continue reading Hermetic Rebirth and the Cave of Initiation
In Arabic classifications of science and philosophy, which were adapted in the twelfth century, alchemy was defined as a sub-branch of natural philosophy (scientia naturalis), sharing this definition, above all, with medicine. Thus, about ten years after the first translation of an alchemical text into Latin (Morienus, De compositione alchimie), Dominic Gundissalinus described alchemy as … Continue reading Visualization in Medieval Alchemy – alchemy as a science and an art aimed at the transformation of species
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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..
(auto-translation from the French) Here is a large excerpt of commentary on Fulcanelli RERE RER, in his first book "The Mystery of the Cathedrals" ... The puzzle itself consists of two terms: RERE, RER, which seem to have no meaning and are both, repeated three times on the concave bottom of the niche. We already … Continue reading RERE RER – Fulcanelli
Plotinus: 'Withdraw into yourself and look; and if you do not find yourself beautiful as yet, do as does the sculptor of a statue ... cut away all that is excessive, straighten all that is crooked, bring light to all that is shadowed ... do not cease until there shall shine out on you the … Continue reading Withdraw into yourself and look..
The Tarocchi of Mantegna is one of the earliest known tarot or Tarocchi packs, "being dated to c.1465, contemporary with the Visconti-Sforza deck of the mid-fifteenth century which is recognised as the earliest tarot." In the words of Adam McLean: The symbolism of these cards, or perhaps we should say 'emblematic figures', would seem to … Continue reading The Tarocchi de Mantegna
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
"..for a lily blossoms upon the mountains and valleys in all the ends of the earth..” Jakob Bohme – Signatura Rerum (The Signature of All Things) Fig. 2. Der Kleine Morgen. Collection Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg "The painting consists of two separate parts, an interior and an exterior painting or “frame” that are connected to each … Continue reading PH Runge’s Der Kleine Morgen, 1808 and Jakob Boehme’s Aurora
"An alchemist is seen in physical form below this magnificent scene wearing a coat of stars, white one side and dark on the other. He stands in a grove of trees, each of which bears a symbol of the planetary metals and twelve fundamental substances. The alchemist holds a twin-bladed axe in either hand reinforcing … Continue reading Alchemical Psychology – Old Recipes for Living in a New World