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S0LiPS1ST
09-10-2011, 01:16 AM
Humankind cannot gain anything without first giving something in return. To obtain,
something of equal value must be lost. That is alchemy's First Law of Equivalent
Exchange. In those days, we really believed that to be the world's one, and only, truth.
But the world isn't perfect, and the law is incomplete. Equivalent Exchange doesn't
encompass everything that goes on here. But I still choose to believe in its principle: that
all things do come at a price. That there's an ebb, and a flow, a cycle. That the pain we
went through did have a reward and that anyone who's determined and perseveres will
get something of value in return, even if it's not what they expected. I don't think of
Equivalent Exchange as a law of the world anymore. I think of it as a promise between
my brother and me - a promise that someday, we'll see each other again.

Alphonse
Elric, Fullmetal Alchemist

Seth-Ra
09-10-2011, 02:33 AM
From the old FMA - though just as important a rule in FMA 2: Brotherhood. (Brotherhood was better)

Its simply an equation, it always balances out, even if unseen for a time. Then call into question the Stone itself - how much is required to balance that? Something simple, or something complex - where is the line? "Stone of immeasurable sacrifice" - this initially would seem to be that it is of great magnitude, unfathomably so. But in a more balanced view of that title for the Stone, one can see it is both the smallest (immeasurable because its unfathomably small) all the way to the infinitely large. All balance creates a catalyst for change, within its respective kingdom, or all kingdoms - depending. The Stone is physical, and a principle - an object of use, and a mindset to walk in. All and One - equivalently balanced through and through, no matter the size, ratio, goal or magnitude of the change/transmutation one causes.

Equivalence - Balance - Rebis - Stone.


:)

~Seth-Ra

solomon levi
09-12-2011, 06:29 PM
"A man may be born, but in order to be born he must first die, and in order to die he must first awake." - Gurdjieff

There is another quote from Carlos that I can't find. It went something like this:
Carlos is telling don Juan that he can never repay him for the gift/knowledge he has learned.
Don Juan says something like, "You don't need to pay me. Make your payment to the soul of man."


The law is definitely not limited to "equal value".
We can give up our illusions for reality. :)

Awani
09-14-2011, 10:29 PM
Humankind cannot gain anything without first giving something in return. To obtain,
something of equal value must be lost. That is alchemy's First Law of Equivalent
Exchange.

Gospel of Philip:
Most things in the world, as long as their inner parts are hidden, stand upright and live. If they are revealed, they die, as is illustrated by the visible man: as long as the intestines of the man are hidden, the man is alive; when his intestines are exposed and come out of him, the man will die. So also with the tree: while its root is hidden, it sprouts and grows. If its root is exposed, the tree dries up. So it is with every birth that is in the world, not only with the revealed but with the hidden. For so long as the root of wickedness is hidden, it is strong. But when it is recognized, it is dissolved. When it is revealed, it perishes.



"A man may be born, but in order to be born he must first die, and in order to die he must first awake." - Gurdjieff

This brings to mind another Gospel of Philip quote: "Those who say they will die first and then rise are in error. If they do not first receive the resurrection while they live, when they die they will receive nothing. So also when speaking about baptism they say, "Baptism is a great thing," because if people receive it they will live."

I see Baptism as Initiation into the Mysteries... rather than some old guy in a robe pouring water on your head.

And from the Gospel of Thomas:
Jesus said, "This heaven will pass away, and the one above it will pass away. The dead are not alive, and the living will not die. In the days when you consumed what is dead, you made it what is alive. When you come to dwell in the light, what will you do? On the day when you were one you became two. But when you become two, what will you do?"

Which brings us back to First Law of Equivalent Exchange... which in alchemy is always about opposites, and the union of them. So I guess the Gnostics would have loved FMA. LOL! A POPular idea;) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDNkmg1QlrU.

I moved this thread to Pop-Culture (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/forumdisplay.php?66-Pop-Culture), but it doesn't make it any less valuable in terms of "truth"... alchemy is after all an art form! Maybe we should leave the boxed in scientific mind at the door?

:cool:

solomon levi
01-24-2012, 06:10 PM
I think equivalent exchange is really important. I guess it has become such a
part of my normal behavoir that I don't notice it so much though. It was really big
when I first matured from being a teen-ager and accepted this responsibility.
I saw how much my parents gave and I wanted to give back instead of just expecting
it and taking for granted that that was "their job" to take care of me.

I called it "reciprocating". Someone cooks me dinner, I do the dishes. It's simple
things like that often.

Then, on a larger scale/frame, there is the balance of life. Those who really want to
evolve move from reciprocating to giving, giving more. The "idea" is that one gives
in surplus to receive more from spirit, from life. Give and give and give, try to create
a vaccuum which the unknown must fill. Now we're not just maintaining a balance -
we're moving forward, we're driving evolution.

Andro
01-24-2012, 06:22 PM
Re-quoting Mr. Philip:


Most things in the world, as long as their inner parts are hidden, stand upright and live.
If they are revealed, they die, as is illustrated by the visible man: as long as the intestines of the man are hidden, the man is alive; when his intestines are exposed and come out of him, the man will die.
So also with the tree: while its root is hidden, it sprouts and grows. If its root is exposed, the tree dries up.

Maybe this is another possible explanation (among others) for how 'staying hidden' (secret) is what actually keeps Alchemy alive?