View Full Version : psychological prima materia

solomon levi
11-29-2009, 03:25 AM
When we analyse the qualities and properties of the first matter through a
psychological perspective, we have something dark, saturnian, foul and
rejected, as in practical alchemy. But considering all the qualities, it seems
that we are to look within ourselves at our shadow nature - the dark side
that we each reject or don't want to look at, nor want others to see. Saturn
is black, heavy and slow, like the inertia in oneself - those "bad" habits that
are difficult to change and more comfortable to ignore. Saturn is also "time"
and one should look at those items from the past that we are still holding onto,
that don't allow us to enjoy the present as it is.

These are the starting material of spiritual work, and the first process is
calcination by a strong fire. Personally, I liken this fire to attention and
self-observation. When we stop ignoring these items, and stop not wanting
to see them, then we hold them under our firey gaze and really look at
them, down to the roots, and find out if anything in them can survive this
fire. Most will not, and this is the dissolution and the separation of the
gross (false) from the fine (true).

11-29-2009, 09:55 AM
Hello Solomon,

Yes first matter can be as you describe, Saturnian and Black, crude, but also of a "solar" nature like the Red Earth "Adamah" that is used to describe it.

Psychologically it means that the individual, or human ego, even equilibrated is a perfect subject for inner alchemy. This is more the social mask, personna, than the shadow self. But in this Red matter, even the shadow aspect is considered. Look at a person realizing a good therapy, solving (what a good word) it's inner problems, there is nonetheless an ego.

The most part of the time, people like that never go so far in the inner exploration, because they are in a rest phase, a kind of maturity -no disturbing thing pushing them to move, search and ask profund questions. Mostly, they fall back into a saturnian aspect when something in their life goes bad and crumble, and then it goes ... "is there a God " "why does it happens to me" etc etc and when answers are found, an integration happens, and a new maturity rise. Until another big challenge happening.

It's called a multiplication in practical alchemy in my point of view.


solomon levi
12-01-2009, 02:05 AM
Greetings Salazius.
Yes, I had given some thought to sol and its relationship to ego.
I thought it odd that, when the path is described using planets,
sol comes into the picture kind of late, seemingly, if we are to believe it
represents ego/personality.

I find it sad that people often turn to god only in times of need/crisis. It
shows that people do not understand what god truly is, nor their relationship
to it. I suppose that's why there's so much pain in the world, since people
seem to require it in order to seek the presence. Pain and sorrow are good
teachers for that, but no more so than joy if people could recognise/utilise it.
Why not, when everything seems to be going right, say "Why me, God?
What did I do to deserve this?" :D
It's funny the things people take credit for, and the things that they give
credit to god instead.

Humans are a funny lot.


12-01-2009, 08:00 AM
Interesting Topic.

I would say the materia prima actually is invisible, it's just an aspect of permanent change. People actually can't deal with with changes anyway, maybe it's because they seek for constancy (which for me symbolizes for example the rose in the middle of the four elements, the middle of the materia chaotica), it's just a naturally way of acting.

For me the black color also symbolizes the saturnian aspect, as well as our deepest fears. Maybe it's the fear of total unconsciousness. It's funny, cause the last days i was thinking about it, and then i came to the conclusion that for example it's possible to see deep sleep as an analaogy, cause in this moment you don't have any form of consciousness, but everything is regenerating again ... a change.

And it's the same with depression and pain. The same process, experienced differently.

On the other hand everything seems to be stored inside the materia prima, our passions, our longings, our past, even our thoughts, and from a different view also the matter, but everything still unmanifasted.
So, yes, it symbolizes as well our ego, but this is just cause everyone identificates oneself with their passions and longings, which actually in my opinion is a good thing, but i think, it would be important to see a little bit further.

But, yes, i also think that even if the matter comes into a state of perfect unity (again), the ego will still be present, the materia prima will always be part of that unity.


solomon levi
12-01-2009, 06:20 PM
I love the phrase "permanent change".
Your english is just fine, Agni.

I've heard that depression actually brings one closer to,
let's call it the subconscious mind for sake of communication.
In other words, depression is a good place to be in, relative to
touching the hem of god (again, pardon the phrasing). But
unfortunately, most people are coming to this place thinking
"what's wrong with me?" or such thoughts which then places more
seeds of the past in this fertile ground of depression/near silence.
If, in such instances, they would contemplate what they'd like their
life to be like, something new, magical things could happen - like
the caterpillar in a cocoon.

03-10-2010, 03:30 AM
Great discussion, thank you. I do think of suffering as the raw material for psychological and spiritual advancement. You may be interested in this book: Marlan S "The Black Sun. The Alchemy and Art of Darkness". Texas A&M University Press, 2005